In Feature, Style

Sophisticated DIY elements and vintage touches make for an original way to tie the knot.


The Couple:
Ellen Fitzsimmons, 25, Clinical Psychology PhD Student & Tim Craft, 27, Video Editor and Motion Graphics Designer

When Ellen and Tim Craft began planning their wedding, they were sure to have a hand in every element. The couple’s playful mix of handmade décor with carefully selected vintage items made for a warm and charming ceremony that made their guests feel right at home.

Although the story of their courtship has taken them across continents, it all started right here in St. Louis. Ellen and Tim first met as teenagers while working together at Ted Drewes. The pair quickly became good friends, but it wasn’t until years later (and one serendipitous midnight walk in the park) that they realized they were destined to be together. Eventually, the adventurous young couple indulged in a fun-filled trip to Ireland, where Tim popped the question. They began planning immediately and decided to get married in front of family and friends, where they could display their artistic talents in the form of heartfelt wedding décor.

The bride and groom began collecting vintage pieces for their wedding almost immediately after getting engaged. In lieu of traditional centerpieces, antique vases made of milk glass mingled with vintage books and functioned as lovely and unique wedding décor. Local florist Bloomin’ Buckets brought the vintage look to life with a splash of peonies, dahlias and billy balls. A vintage suitcase (a reminder of their fateful trip to Ireland) was chosen to hold wedding cards and served as a romantic departure from the traditional decorated box.

Handmade poufs made of tissue paper and fabric in washed-out shades of pink and cream hung on satin ribbon throughout the venue. Ellen crafted each one months before the wedding—a labor of love. A huge banner, also made by the bride, provided the perfect backdrop to wedding party photos, and lent a definite air of nostalgia to the event. Handmade invitations (which rightfully garnered much pre-wedding attention) were a family affair. Ellen, Tim and Ellen’s sister, Jane, all played a part in their design and creation.

Although it took Ellen and Tim a while to realize they were destined to be together, it wasn’t so with the dress. Ellen was clicking her way through a wedding blog when she stumbled upon the dress of her dreams. Simple, with an A-line cut and strapless neckline, it was exactly what Ellen was looking for. She was even more delighted to find out that the dress was made mostly of cotton, which fi t in nicely with her easy but elegant aesthetic.

Although the St. Louis couple is currently living away from home in Carraboro, NC, it was important for them to get married in their hometown, and to incorporate as much of St. Louis as possible. They took photos at many of their favorite local landmarks, including Forest Park and the Muny, and their last photo opp was at Ted Drewes (where they fi rst met). It was there that the entire wedding party commenced to indulge in a sweet treat—on the house, of course—as is the tradition at the St. Louis frozen custard staple.

The bride and groom went out of their way to avoid being too matchy-matchy, especially where wedding attire was concerned. As an alternative to stiff tuxedos, the men wore gingham dress shirts with suits. In addition to traditional ivory, a wash of muted pink and peach fl oral detail enhanced the back of Ellen’s dress. Her shoes, from the Anthropologie Bridal Collection, spoke to her classic, yet eclectic sense of personal style.

From the rehearsal dinner (held in a backyard tent) to Ellen and Tim’s elegant plated wedding dinner at the Forest Park Visitor Center, everything was 100 percent vegetarian. By the time the delicious wedding meal was over, any misgivings about vegetarian dining were quietly put to rest as guests were busy enjoying fresh salads topped with gouda-fi lled beggar’s purses and sumptuous butternut squash ravioli. Ultimately, to Ellen and Tim’s delight, most guests raved about the “amazing” food, and truly enjoyed the departure from the standard wedding fare.



Ellen Fitzsimmons, 25 & Tim Craft, 27

Ellen Fitzsimmons, 25 & Tim Craft, 27







Photo credit: Photos by Jessica Priest / Brea Photography

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