Fall wedding planning: All you need for the big day

Table of Contents

XO Life Celebrations: Photo Source – Tracy Richards

Is there a better time for a wedding than the autumn? Fall foliage provides the perfect backdrop, you won’t melt or freeze, and your guests won’t have to work around busy summer vacation plans. Add in the charm and wildness of Hastings County as the destination, and you have the ingredients for a wedding you’ll remember forever. As I’ve written before here, the area has plenty of venue options for a unique fall celebration. But what about caterers, photographers, florists, and other wedding suppliers? Here are a few options to put on your list.

Catering: Barn and Country BBQ Catering

Barn and Country: Photo Source: Barn and Country Facebook

Serving up deep, smoky barbecue flavours is a good way to create those warm, intimate vibes fall weddings are all about. In Hastings, the family owned and operated Barn and Country should be your go-to on this front. Based out of a barn-turned-commercial-kitchen near Stirling, the chefs are masters of pulled pork, brisket, roasted chicken, ribs, and all the sides you can think of. All of it’s made with the freshest ingredients and from scratch. Don’t have a kitchen at your venue? No worries. Barn and Country has a food truck as well as mobile kitchen units they can bring with them. Just remember to book at least 8 to 10 months in advance; this is one of the busiest catering companies in the area.    


Photography: Wryghte Photography

Wryghte Photography: Photo Source – Wryghte Photography Facebook

Photographs allow you to return again and again to one of the most important days of your life. That means you need a photographer like Mackenzie Wryghte who can fade into the background and allow you to be present for each moment of that day. Her process is all about minimizing stress and maximizing enjoyment of your wedding, she says. The results are photographs that authentically capture so many of those little moments. As one couple put it: “Mac was amazing at capturing candids — almost to the point where I was shocked at the photos, because I didn’t even recall her being there. . . . This is a woman of creative stealth.”


Makeup: Brooke Mullett Beauty

Brooke Mullet Beauty: Photo Source – Brooke Mullet Website

Of course, you have to look your best for those photos. Better turn to one of the top makeup artists in the area, Brooke Mullett. Brooke’s focus is not only on ensuring that brides and their entire parties look their best but also have fun throughout the entire process. She prides herself on giving professional and comfortable service, and using only the finest products on the market. She also specializes in mature skin application, eyebrow shaping and filling, full face contouring, and highlighting. And if you’re looking for a fun wedding shower or bachelorette party activity, Brooke offers group makeup lessons.           


Flowers: Begonia Moon Flower Studio

Begonia Moon Flower Studio: Photo Source – Alysia McMenomy

Just like the food and foliage, flowers are key to a stunning fall wedding. Just ask Alysia McMenomy, the owner of Begonia Moon Flower Studio. For years, she has been combining all of those burnt oranges, rich reds, and deep yellows into unique arrangements and bouquets that bring autumn ceremonies to life. Environmental sustainability is big for Alysia, so most of her flowers are grown on Begonia Moon’s small-scale flower farm near Madoc. She also has recycling and compost programs in place, and she carefully chooses her materials to ensure her ecological footprint is small. “I’m a traditionalist at heart,” she writes. “Each oil infused, flower grown, bouquet made, or fabric sewn is a joyful labour of love, an enjoyment of taking the long road home.”  


Planning: XO Life Celebrations

XO Life Celebrations: Photo Source – Tracy Richards

Let’s face it: choosing all of these wedding vendors can be exhausting. So, if you’d rather have someone else take care of the details, give Tracy Richards a call at XO Life Celebrations. Since 2015, the officiant and life celebration specialist has been organizing simple marriage signings, intimate elopements, and elegant all-inclusive weddings throughout Toronto and southeastern Ontario. Soon, she’ll even be offering casual, country-style elopements at her pastoral Centre Hastings property overlooking Deer Creek. Tracy prides herself on making the entire planning process straightforward while also creating personalized ceremonies for every couple. As one new bride wrote: “We had the most beautiful ceremony that our guests are still talking about. Tracy listened to us, was patient with us, and spoke the most beautiful words about our love. We couldn’t have asked for anything more.”xolifecelebrations.com

Honeymoon: Black River Retreat

Black River Retreat: Photo Source – Black River Retreat Website

The last thing on the wedding to-do list is usually picking a place to honeymoon. If you want to keep those Hastings autumn vibes going, check out Black River Retreat just north of Tweed. Nestled along the Black River on six acres of woodland trails, this private luxury resort caters to just one couple at a time. It’s all about fairy tales here, including the woodland suite with its fireplace and log bed, the private dining room with its king chairs and four-course meals, and the bucolic surroundings offering kayaking, hiking, and lounging in a cedar hot tub. Before you go, find the love lock in your suite. Legend has it that if you lock it in the garden and throw the key in the pond your love is guaranteed to last a lifetime.   


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Quinn's of Tweed

345 Victoria St. North Tweed, Ontario K0K 3J0

Visitors often ask about the building and it’s name, Quinn’s of Tweed. In fact, tradition dictates that we keep, with honour,  the name Quinn’s of Tweed, the original name of the store and building. The Quinn’s of Tweed building is one of the town’s oldest and most beautiful historic stone structures, dating back to the 1880s. The twelve foot walls allow us to hang paintings in the traditional French salon style. You’ll marvel at the craftmanship of the ash and maple staircase, the old bookeeper’s office, and the stained glass that brings one back to an era when a handshake and promise were as good as gold – today, we still believe in those principles.

gaylord hardwood flooring

228 Victoria St N, Tweed, ON K0K 3J0

Charles Frederick McGowan sold the lot in 1907 to William James Lawrence for $600.00. Shortly thereafter Mr. Lawrence erected the building which still stands there today. He conducted a furniture business until 1912, when he sold the property to the Traders’ Bank of Canada, which within the year, was taken over by the Royal Bank of Canada. It operated out of the building until 1942, when the war forced consolidations and closures due to a lack of tellers (men). The property changed hands a couple more times before local Tweed family, Gaylord Forest Products secured the property in 2003. Since then, they have evolved every inch of the interior into an experience. Each room throughout the building is a real life ‘showroom’ from top to bottom; you simply have to see it to believe it. The stairwell in particular holds a lot of history!

Marmora and Lake Inn

Come as strangers. Leave as friends.

29 Bursthall St, Marmora, ON K0K 2M0

Experience the charm of our 1906 mansion, nestled in the village of Marmora, Ontario, an historic town celebrating 200 years in 2021. The large and stately home was built by Ed Shannon for lumber baron Henry Reginald Pearce (known as “Reginald”) and his family, who purchased the lot for $200. It remained a private family dwelling for many decades and eventually was converted to a Bed and Breakfast by Chris and Lilly Boldly.

It now operates as Marmora And Lake Inn B&B and boasts beautiful, spacious bedrooms with quaint old-world craftsmanship for a luxurious stay. Onsite amenities include an exceptional indoor swimming pool, bubbler tub, infrared sauna, large screen SMART TV’s in each room, wireless internet access throughout, and generous sized gathering rooms. And being a small town, the pool is open to the community and friends for a nominal fee (pre-booking is required).

Our guests enjoy a complimentary continental breakfast including locally baked breads and pastries, yogurt and fresh fruit, an extensive beverage and tea/coffee bar featuring a wide variety of flavours and blends. Great outdoor patio area for fair-weather relaxation and large private events.

Whether planning a romantic weekend for two, a small wedding, a family reunion or a week-long visit to bask in the natural beauty of the region, the Marmora And Lake Inn B&B will help make it a time to remember. (Please note that all bedrooms are on the upper levels and we don’t yet have accessibility assist.)