An Antique English Country Wedding in Philadelphia

Laura Breckenridge and Benjamin Savage

Photographed by: Asya PhotographyLocation: Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States

The inspiration for Laura Breckenridge and Benjamin Savage’s Philadelphia wedding came as naturally as their decision to marry in Laura’s childhood home. Towering trees and green lawns surrounding the charming house were perfect starting points for their “vintage English garden” theme. “We didn’t want the décor to take away from the trees and woods I loved playing in while I was growing up, but to add to it,” she explains.

A chuppah – constructed of exposed wood and adorned with loose arrangements of greenery, branches, and white and blue flowers – was placed on a backyard lawn bordered by trees. As the sun began to set, Laura walked down the rose-petal-covered aisle in the same lace wedding gown her grandmother and mother had worn for their nuptials. Her bouquet of vanilla peonies, ivory garden roses, freesia, and pale blue tweedia was wrapped with pearls gifted to her by her late grandmother. The multifaith ceremony included handwritten vows and prayers that reflected Laura’s Episcopalian and Ben’s Jewish faith. 

The English garden theme carried through to the reception, held at a local country club that was built in 1884. After the cocktail hour on the property’s patio and lawn (which also included games such as chess and croquet), guests made their way into the club’s historic ballroom for dinner and dancing. To reflect the “vintage” motif, the room was outfitted in a color palette of gold and ivory. Gilded mercury votive candleholders and urns filled with white and blue flowers adorned each table, and eggshell linens topped the place settings. A mocha-raspberry and lemon-flavored cake featured a lace design, inspired by Laura’s dress, along with a cascading peony in an antique rose hue.

Reflecting on their wedding day, “we had so much fun celebrating with our loved ones that the only thing we’d have wanted more of was time together with them,” Ben notes. Laura prompts other brides to remember what the day really means to them; for her and Ben, the goal was to provide as much joy as possible to their guests as a way of thanking them for their encouragement. “For us, it was about standing up in front of the people who have always and will continue to support us through our lives, and say, ‘This is who we are and the family we are choosing to build together,’” Laura affirms. “We wanted a day filled with love, joy, laughter, and fun.”