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A Cottage Core Wildflower Garden Wedding | Andrea & Jesse from Toledo, Ohio

Friday, August 18, 2023

bride and groom walking at sunset at northwest ohio wedding venue
Bride and groom walking at sunset at Arlington Acres

How they met

Jesse and Andrea met when they were 8 years old. They went to school together from 2nd-8th grade and Jesse was Andrea’s secret crush for years. In middle school their families became close and started spending more time together. They started dating as soon as they started high school and have never looked back!

The Proposal

They took a trip to the upper peninsula in Michigan. Throughout the day almost everything went wrong, their kayaking trip was canceled, they took a wrong turn while hiking, were eaten alive by mosquitos, and still managed to have so much fun together. When they were finally back to the cabin settling down for a campfire, Jesse proposed! They "kept it a secret" till they got home, then told their families and seeing everyone share in our happiness and excitement was something they will hold onto forever. 

Their Cottage Core Wildflower Decor

Andrea works at Levi & Lilacs, a restaurant and whiskey room that houses the largest whiskey collection in Northwest Ohio. There are over 300 different whiskeys on their shelves and while talking to coworkers about all things wedding planning, Andrea had the idea to use the unique bottles the bar had in ample supply as bud vases throughout the venue. Throughout the year leading up to their wedding Andrea went through the empty bottles at the end of every shift taking home bottles that had interesting shapes, logos, or stories. It became a restaurant-wide affair as co-workers started setting aside bottles that they knew she would love, or even recommending certain whiskeys so that she could take home the empty bottles before the wedding. It started out as a unique way to save some money and ended up being such a fun process. It was the perfect touch to their cottage core wildflower garden wedding theme. 

Budgeting for a Wildflower Garden Wedding

Andrew and Jesse stuck to a budget and had few steps to help get the wedding they dreamed of while avoiding the guilt of a huge bill. The first thing they did was TONS of research. For every vendor they hired they looked at probably 50 others. There is a vendor out there that can get you what you want at a price you're comfortable with. You have to be patient and keep looking for them!  


The next thing they did was think long and hard about the guest list. They both have big families that mean the world to us. In the end, they kept their guest list to just family and about 25 close friends. They also decided early on to only focus on what things they valued the most and to adjust their budget for unimportant things.  For example, Andrea was willing to pay for a great photographer because that was important to her (and paid off! Look at the amazing job Brooke Michele did), but they bought their cake from Costco because it wasn't a big priority for them. (it was still delicious though!) 


The other way they saved money was by being creative. They looked at their skills, resources, and connections and used those in the ways we could. The bottles for their centerpieces were all free from Andrea’s job (see above). The flowers were from a local flower farm. Andrea and her bridesmaids took the day before the wedding to make all the bouquets, boutonnieres and centerpieces with help from a teacher they had in elementary school. Andrea designed all the signs and had them printed at office max. Think outside the box and do what you can using what you have!  

First Look

Andrea and Jesse chose to do a private personal vow reading and first look. This allowed them a few moments to themselves in the midst of a crazy day.

The Ceremony - The Favorite Moment of the Day

“It was truly the most magical and memorable day of my life, but I have to say when I walked down the aisle. I thought I could keep my cool, but I was so overcome with emotion in the best way. When I saw everyone there it was so overwhelming to realize that all the people that I care so much about were in the same room just for this. I have never felt so surrounded by love and support. I walked down the aisle (way faster than I should have) half laughing, half crying and so filled with love. When I got to the end of the aisle and got to hold Jesse’s hand I just felt so overcome with gratitude that I was about to marry my best friend in a room that was so full of love." ~ Andrea, AA Bride from Toledo, Ohio

Why They Chose Arlington Acres

"Seeing the space in person and meeting Sarah really sealed the deal! The space is so gorgeous and well taken care of and Sarah is so organized and on top of everything! I knew if we worked with Arlington Acres they would make sure we were prepared and ready to have the perfect wedding for us. " ~ Andrea, AA Bride from Toledo, Ohio

Advice to Future Couples

“I planned our wedding while being a full time college student, working part time, and buying a home. I recommend picking a venue that's already gorgeous. Arlington Acres is so beautiful it hardly needs any decor! I heavily relied on the recommended vendor list that's provided on the website! It was so helpful because I didn't have time to research every vendor and I knew if Arlington Acres was recommending them, they must do a fantastic job. 

Don't be afraid to ask for help! I thought we could do everything on our own but half the fun is letting the project be something that brings people closer together. And remember that at the end of the day, your wedding is a big party where the people you love celebrate with you. It should feel like a party, don't get wrapped up in details. “ ~ Andrea, AA Bride from Toledo, Ohio

Kind Words 

“We got married at Arlington Acres and would highly recommend!!  Arlington Acres was so organized, communicative, and on top of things, it took so much off my plate to be able to trust them so much. Having everything in the same location made logistics a breeze and having an open-air venue was absolutely beautiful. Our families and friends had nothing but compliments about the venue! If you're worried about getting married in the August heat, our wedding day was 75 degrees and sunny!” ~ Andrea, AA Bride from Toledo, Ohio

The Wedding Details

Jesse and Andrea's Cottage Core Garden Summer Wedding wasn't about perfection; it was about authenticity, creativity, and love.  They successfully had their dream wedding while sticking to their budget, had the sweetest details and altogether the most gorgeous summer wildflower wedding.

Bride and groom walking at sunset to their wedding reception at Arlington Acres a white barn wedding venue in Tiffin Ohio
Bride and groom walking

The Wedding Vendor Team

Guest Count: 130

Bar Service: Bartenders Elite

Cake: Costco

Caterer: Moreno's

DJ: T-Town DJ 

Photographer: Brooke Michele Photo

Stationary: Truly Engaging


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