My Favorite Creative Touches From Our Big Day

Updated: Jul 16

Hunter and I got married years before Pinterest was a thing. At a time when wedding planning took the form of a 5-inch binder and cutouts from Martha Stewart Wedding Magazine (which only came out quarterly, mind you). Nowadays, one can have endless online vision boards that can be updated by the minute. And while I love Pinterest, I thank God my wedding took place in 2008. As a super detailed person who tends to micromanage just a little too much (cue a side smirk from Hunter) if I had Pinterest back when I was engaged, I would still be planning my wedding today.

In all seriousness though, I loved our wedding! While there are a few details I would change today, I still believe July 26, 2008 was near perfect in so many ways. With our 12thanniversary just a few weeks away, I’ve been spending a lot of time reminiscing on old photos and memories with our kids. (I like to think they are completely interested and impressed, but deep down I know better.) Still, it’s been fun, and has slightly inspired me to get creative again, Pinterest aside. So today I thought I’d take over Hunter’s email and share with you four of my favorite creative touches from our big day, 12 years ago.

Side note: Pay attention to the idea behind the out-of-focused, off-centered pictures here. These are the kind of pictures you get when you invite an aspiring photographer family friend to take pictures at your wedding.

Creative touch #1: Popcorn and a Movie

Following our ceremony, we knew we wanted to take our time with pictures, and not feel pressured to hurry to the reception. Still, we didn’t want everyone just sitting around and waiting on us. So we entertained them! Using our mad Windows Movie Maker skills we had just acquired in college, we created the most precious slideshow of our relationship and served freshly popped popcorn and soda in old fashion bottles for them to enjoy while watching. and waiting on us.

Creative touch #2: Family Tables

I am all about family heirlooms and antiques. Plus, I was going through a super shabby chic phase back in my early 20’s. To celebrate the marriages that had gone before us in our families, Hunter and I collected wedding pictures from all our ancestors and used them as centerpieces on each table, complete with heirlooms from that family. It was so fun watching our guests walk around from table to table to admire all the old wedding pictures and learn a little bit about our families from the treasures they left behind.  

Creative Touch #3: Borrowed Details

With the exception of flowers and linens, almost all of our reception decorations were borrowed items we repurposed from family and friends. We borrowed an old, antique bed as a gift table. We had a friend who collected vintage games and borrowed a cricket set, old checkerboard table, and more to set around the lawn for the kids to enjoy. And we decorated the walls with handmade quilts from Hunter’s grandmother. These special touches made our wedding both unique and personal, and were completely free! So my advice to you…start rummaging around the houses of your family and friends! You never know what you will find.

Creative Touch #4: A Touch of How We Met

Hunter and I met a Christian summer camp back when we were in middle school. (We will skip the fact that he dated two of my best friends from that camp before he made his rounds to me…minor detail.) Both Hunter and I wanted a piece of our wedding to share how our story all began. At the camp, there was always a clothesline hanging outside of the cafeteria for campers to share notes with each other. So, of course, we hung a clothesline at our wedding and asked our guests to write and hang up their best marriage advice. We still have a box of these precious notes today! Perhaps we will read through them on our anniversary.

These touches may be just your style or not at all. Either is fine. Point is, find creative ways to make this day your own. Your wedding should reflect you as a couple. Dig deep into your story, your personalities, and your style. Don’t be afraid to step out of the box and get creative. THIS DAY IS ALL YOURS!!! Also…creativity doesn’t always equal costly either. Remember that. Pinterest may try to tell you otherwise, but with a little work, it doesn’t have to be true.

Now if you are in the middle of planning your wedding and have some fun, creative ideas you can’t wait to share, my last piece of advice is to hire a photographer who you know can capture them for you. Trust me, in 12 years when you look back on your wedding pictures with your kids, you will be so happy you did.

P.S. I realized I’m biased, but I do believe Hunter is the best photographer who can do this for you! ;-)

Jillian Kittrell

A.K.A. Hunter’s wife and occasional second-shooter

Based in Johnson City, TN

@2020 by Hunter Kittrell Photography