Motif Motivation: Inspiration for Rustic-Chic Weddings

Idyllic elements to include in your rustic-chic nuptials from real weddings and styled shoots.

Motif Motivation: Inspiration for Rustic-Chic Weddings

Photo: Images by Berit, Inc.

For many couples, nothing could be more romantic than getting back to nature for their special day. Though these pairs desire a more natural wedding, this doesn’t mean they’re seeking to eschew formality and upscale elements – these brides and grooms often select a rustic-chic motif for their nuptials, as it represents the perfect balance. There are slight variances within this concept – for example, some like a more farm- or barn-centered design while others lean toward a vineyard-based affair – but overall, it’s about organic details. In recent years, this idea has become increasingly popular in weddings, which means couples and wedding planners alike have been masterminding incredible new details to accent the motif.

If you’ve been toying with the idea of adopting this concept, but don’t know quite where to start, we’ve compiled some of our favorite elements from recent rustic-chic vow exchanges to share with you. From wine barrels holding up lush floral arrangements, to a wooden swing set acting as a food display, to sweet and simple flower crowns for your flower girl, you’ll swoon over our selections. Scroll through the photos from real weddings – and a styled wedding event – below.

Sara & Bret's Wedding in California
After first connecting at the wedding of mutual friends, Sara and Bret designed their own nuptials in Sonoma County, California. The event was entirely alfresco and offered up an "elevated, outdoorsy" feel with long reception tables and plenty of foliage throughout. Guests were entertained with polaroid cameras and lawn games until finding their seats and enjoying delicious fare while taking in the scenery. Photos by Katie Shuler Photographer; Planning & Design by Tessa Lyn Events

A Farmhouse Styled Event
Planner Ilana Rosenberg designed a styled event for wedding professionals with pastoral elegance in mind. Upon selecting a farmhouse venue in Malibu, California, Ilana and her creative partners used their innovative minds to bring together a simple engagement party feel with wood tables, lace runners, outdoor lounge spaces, and one of our most favorite food and drink displays for this celebration. Photos by Brian Leahy; Planning & Design by Ilana Ashley Events

Aarin & David's Wedding in Santa Barbara
When you first meet during your years at a childhood summer camp, it seems only right that your wedding be a nod to your origin story as a couple. Aarin and David went campground-chic for their special day, designing both outdoor and indoor spaces, while adding just a touch of boho-glam style. After saying their "I dos" underneath a canopy of trees, guests retreated inside the barn reception where they dined on a "naked" cake. Photos by Samuel Lippke Studios; Bridal Stylist: Dear Maradee

Kate & Shaun's Wedding in San Luis Obispo
"We met at a bar [...] in New York City in October of [2011], as winter was just stretching its legs," says Shaun of the day he first laid eyes on Kate. Years later, the pair planned an inspired marriage celebration to share with their friends and family in San Luis Obispo, California. The bride carried a cluster of wild and eclectic blossoms as natural elements were the perfect highlight for the rustic-chic occasion. Photos by Matt Kennedy Photography; Bridal Salon: Carine's Bridal Atelier; Calligraphy by Laura Hooper Calligraphy

Katrina & Brian's Wedding in New Jersey
Sharing a love of horses, it's no surprise that Katrina and Brian hit it off right away. For their wedding, they wanted to incorporate their passion and the groom's equestrian family history into their vow exchange. Electing to host their nuptials at Brian's family estate, the event included a horse-drawn carriage, rustic planter boxes, and the sweethearts' initials comprised of fresh verdure to match the striking shade of green all around them. Photos by Images by Berit, Inc.; Bridal Salon: Mark Ingram Atelier

Discover lovely song lyrics and how to include them in your décor, view some of our favorite green wedding elements, and find out how to include your fraternity or sorority in your nuptials.