Interview with Jamey Ritter of Bemused Design & Photography
Many people cannot wait to begin wedding planning, but not everyone realizes how much work goes into planning a wedding or how to plan a wedding! That is where wedding planners come in! A wedding planner is your guide, planner, designer, organizer, budget-keeper, inspiration, and so much more, from the very beginning through the entire process.
We spoke with Sharon, owner of As You Wish Events here in Bayfield, Wisconsin to learn all about her business and her advice for couples planning a wedding!
Photographer: Focus Photography
Tell us a little bit about yourself and As You Wish Events.
Hi! My name is Sharon Zanto, owner and lead event planner of, “As You Wish Events”, which is a full-service event design and wedding-planning company offering a variety of packages to fit your wedding or event-specific needs. Our collaborative approach of producing cohesive events that are inspired by you, allows us to make each wedding or event unique and distinctive. It is our belief that events are defined by the personalized details that share the story of the couple or host with all of the guests. Our services combine planning and execution with distinctive design and styling to create a once-in-a-lifetime celebration.
Photographer: Focus Photography
How did you get into wedding planning?
I have worked in the world of corporate events for years, and loved to create beautiful events for friends and family as well. I decided to open my own business due to my love of event planning, and the satisfaction I receive in seeing my clients delighted with the outcome of their special event!
What is your favorite thing to do during the wedding off-season?
My favorite thing to do in the wedding off-season are more events!! I love to plan Holiday parties, Birthday, and Anniversary, and many more! Doing a different type of event is refreshing after the wedding season. I am also an avid reader, walker, and foodie…so that is always lovely to do on my down time!
My favorite part of the wedding to plan, is working with the couple on what the vision is for their special day! Each wedding has such a different look and feel to it, so it’s exciting to see the individual outcome!
My advice for couples in the midst of planning their wedding is to stay true to their vision, budget, and remember the reason for getting married!! In the end, if you leave the details to your wedding planner, and relax and enjoy the day, you will be a married couple, and that is the most important thing!
Wild Hollow Farm is a local flower farm and florist that can cover all of the floral needs for your wedding, from seed to vase! Whether you are looking to purchase buckets of field cut flowers to DIY your arrangements or for all of your bouquets and centerpieces to be made, Melissa with Wild Hollow Farm is your perfect resource!
Read our interview with Melissa, who has a love for biology, farming, the outdoors and flowers!
Wild Hollow Farm’s Bouquets
Tell us a little bit about yourself and Wild Hollow Farm.
The natural world and plants in particular have always been a central focus throughout my life. I grew up making forts and flower crowns, and pursued my interests in school with a bachelor’s degree in biology and master’s degree in horticulture. After marrying a fellow plant geek, we lived in Sweden for a year and worked on an organic vegetable and sheep farm. Living and working in the outdoors, and farming in particular, was something that was clearly in the DNA of our hearts, and we jumped right in and bought our 40-acre property in 2004. We grew our farm business along with our family, raising 4 children who know how to plant dahlia tubers, harvest and bunch radishes, and enjoy a good mud puddle.
Wild Hollow Farm is a family farm located ten miles south of Ashland. Our main focus is fresh-cut flowers, but we also grow vegetables, pastured poultry, currants, and hazelnuts. We grow over one hundred annual and perennial flower varieties, each carefully chosen to offer our customers a unique array of colors, textures, scents, and forms throughout the growing season. We offer fresh-cut seasonal flowers for weddings, events and everyday.
How did you get into the flower business?
Flowers have always been a part of our farm, but as we experimented with all sorts of crops over the years, it became clear that cut flowers were a good fit for our family, lifestyle, interests and vision for our farm business. The design aspect of flower farming grew naturally, as I quickly got requests for special bouquets, events, weddings, etc. Through farm tours, floral design classes, conferences, lots of reading, and many hours of practice, I grew and developed my skill set and confidence in floral design. I am a member of the Association of Specialty Cut Flower Growers, which is an incredible resource for learning and connecting with other growers. There is always more to learn and experiment with, and I love the challenge that this provides!
What can Wild Hollow Farm provide for weddings in the area?
We offer full and partial service for any or all of our customer’s wedding flower needs. From a few bouquets or table arrangements, to bulk buckets of flowers for those who want to DIY their arrangements, all the way to providing every piece for a wedding – we accommodate a wide range of needs for weddings in the area.
Our arrangements reflect the seasonal flow of what is blooming on the farm. We put extensive work into planning our crop cycles to ensure a continuous assortment and array of colors, textures, scents and forms throughout the season. We work closely with our customers to provide the design style and color palette they are looking for. If there is a particular flower variety or color that a customer wants in their wedding, we are able to custom grow. We do need plenty of advance notice, however, since our planning and seed ordering takes place in the winter.
What is your favorite aspect of being a farmer and florist?.
I think my favorite part about my job is the balance between art and science that flower farming requires. You not only have to know how to be able to grow the flowers, but arrange and work with them as well. My degrees in biology and horticulture, plus 12 years of farming experience have given me a solid foundation in production, being able to research and implement different growing techniques, learn and understand different growing systems, and solve problems. My heart has always been in art, and I have always given space in my life for creative pursuits. My grandma was an amazing artist who had a big impact on me and gave me the gift of seeing art and beauty in the everyday. Flowers and plant material are definitely my “medium” and I find deep satisfaction, passion, and humility in being able to share that with our community.
I love the full circle of production and design that the farmer and florist occupation offers. We are a true seed to vase operation and nothing is more satisfying to me than selecting varieties, planting, caring for, designing, and finally handing over the finished product directly to the customer. My heart is so entwined throughout this whole process – I am so grateful to have found my life’s passion and to be able to connect with our customers and community through flowers.
What advice would you offer to couples looking to get married in the Bayfield area?
Schedule in a little extra time to enjoy this incredible event in your life! If you are from out of the area, come a few days early and stay a few days later. There will inevitably be so much to do and so many things to take care of, so do yourself a favor and allow extra time to enjoy yourself. We always invite our customers to come to our farm and see for themselves what we have growing. This is a chance for you to take in the colors, forms, and scents and see just what your bouquet flowers look like growing in the field. Whether it is the food, wedding favors, or flowers, having a direct connection with the grower or source of those products is an invaluable experience that will only enhance your overall event.
Get your keys and wallet ready because after reading about all of these amazing desserts you’re going to want to head over to Ashland Baking Company, Cafe Coco and/or Landmark Restaurant at Old Rittenhouse Inn!
Tiered wedding cakes, dessert tables, tortes, cupcakes and are just a few of the fantastic options for your wedding dessert! We spoke with a few local bakeries to hear about their favorite desserts to serve, their specialities and if they have any recommendations for those getting married. Enjoy!
Ashland Baking Company
Located in a neighboring Chequamegon Bay city, Ashland Baking Company is an artisanal bakery that offers an array of high quality, handmade products. Wedding cake designer, Kealy White, says traditional stacked wedding cakes are her passion. She really enjoys collaborating with couples to create the perfect cake for their special day. She also loves making French macarons!
Chocolate cake is Kealy’s favorite, which she thinks pairs well with so many great flavors: raspberry, vanilla, coffee and fresh local berries! Wedding guests tend to get very excited once a cake is cut and they discover that the inside is decadent chocolate. She also loves their coconut cake with passion-fruit filling!
What is Kealy’s recommendation for couples planning a Bayfield wedding? She says planning a wedding can be stressful but she always tells her couples that choosing your wedding desserts should be part of the planning that is lighthearted and fun. Wedding trends are really allowing for a lot of creativity and expressions when it comes to desserts. The sky is the limit!
Ashland Baking Company‘s Cake & French Macarons
Cafe Coco- Artisan Bakery and Good Eats
Located in the neighboring town of Washburn, Cafe Coco serves breakfast and lunch, and also features a delicious deli and bakery. They pride themselves on using local ingredients and offering a variety of gluten-free, vegan and vegetarian options. In addition to making your wedding cake, they also offer catering services.
Cake made by Cafe Coco
The owner of Cafe Coco, Noreen, says her absolute favorite dessert presentation is an assortment of pastries- baklava, cheesecake danish, bobka, hazelnut cream tarts all delivered to tables for guests to make their selections. Her favorite cake is an almond cake with mascarpone and fresh raspberry filling and dulce cream frosting.
Cafe Coco‘s specialty ranges from challenging croquembouche and kransekake to a simple valrhona chocolate ganache cake. Their top recommendation for those getting married is to book your wedding desserts as early as possible!
Dessert made by Cafe Coco
Landmark Restaurant at Old Rittenhouse Inn
Located inside the Old Rittenhouse Inn, Landmark Restaurant offers upscale American and French cuisine all year long in Bayfield, Wisconsin. Landmark Restaurant offers many dining and bakery options for small weddings and intimate celebrations.
We spoke with the owners about their favorite dessert to provide for weddings, which they said are Old Rittenhouse Inn Tortes! Their tortes are multi-layered (4-7 layers) in house-baked cakes that are sliced thin and brushed with liqueur/preserves/filling and alternately frosted with buttercream icing. The exterior is simple, yet elegant, and sometimes garnished with flowers or berries/nuts/icing that complements the chosen flavor.
The orange blossom torte and white chocolate raspberry torte are among staff and guest favorites. The orange blossom offers a vanilla cake sliced into thin layers that are brushed with Cointreau and alternately layered with orange butter cream icing. White chocolate raspberry offers white chocolate cake sliced into thin layers that are brushed with Chambord and alternately layered with raspberry preserves, which chocolate butter cream and fresh raspberries.
Old Rittenhouse Inn’s Landmark Restaurant Blackberry Torte
Let’s be honest, if you are getting married in the Bayfield area you have a love for Lake Superior and the beautiful outdoors! What better way to celebrate her beauty than by incoporating Lake Superior throughout your wedding!
We have gathered some of our favorite ways to do just that. Whether you are getting married in Bayfield or on Madeline Island, or up on the north shore of Lake Superior, you can take advantage of the beauty of the lake! Read ahead to hear and see our ideas.
One of the many things visitors love about Bayfield is the fresh fish you can enjoy at every restaurant in the area. Many couples choose to include fresh whitefish or trout somewhere on their menu- whether it’s smoked trout as an appetizer or whitefish tacos for dinner.
Lake Superior Whitefish Provençal made by Good Thyme Catering, Events & Lodging
Getting married on the shores of Lake Superior offers many possibilities. Whether you’d like sand under your toes, to be in a grassy area beneath a stand of willow trees or standing on a cliff overlooking the water, we have all these options right here. Or, you could even get married on Lake Superior in a sailboat!
Take a look at our Bayfield Weddings Venue Chart to find all of the traditional venues along with beach/ primitive spots!
Rocks and driftwood gathered from the shores of Lake Superior make perfect decorations for your lakeside wedding! Whether you are going for a more natural look or getting crafty, you can gather materials right here where you are getting married.
Spend some time on the shores of Lake Superior for your engagement session. Not only will it provide a gorgeous setting for your photos but you could use them for your Save the Dates. Your Bayfield wedding will mean that much more to you and your guests when they see your beautiful photos inviting them to join in on the fun.
Looking for jewelry or rings that are a little different than the norm? Bayfield is home to a number of incredibly talented artists who could custom make your wedding day jewelry and/or wedding rings! How beautiful would it be to have have your earrings, necklace or ring be made with a Lake Superior agate?!
Lake Superior Agate Ring made by Silverwaves Jewelry
Many couples who get married in the Bayfied area fully embrace the local charm of this community – and that includes purchasing locally handmade favors!
Stone’s Throw is an upbeat gallery where you’ll find a wide variety of eclectic items ranging from handmade porcelain pottery to jewelry, sculpture, functional home decor and more. We interviewed Andrea (Andy) Falconer, the owner of Stone’s Throw, to hear what she has to offer for those getting married in the area!
Tell us about yourself and Stone’s Throw.
In 1979 I came to the Lake Superior area. Not having an idea what to do with my Bachelor of Arts degree from St. Louis’ Webster University, I decided to mooch off my sister Leslie and accepted a clerking job at Karlyn’s Gallery in Washburn, Wisconsin. Karlyn soon had me working the front desk, mixing clay and glazes, throwing, taking orders, and packing and shipping—before I knew it, I was hooked. A new love affair was born. Not just with clay, but with the business of running a gallery and making it seem fun. I’ve owned Stone’s Throw in Bayfield for 21 years now. I don’t produce in the store anymore, I rent a studio space from a friend in the apple orchard area….I get way more done!
What type of gifts at your store would interest engaged couples?
Most of the items that may be of interest include pottery, always a big wedding seller. Stone’s Throw also sells jewelry, scarves, carvings, lotions, mobiles, garden decor, books and paintings.
Can couples order favors through you?
Of course! I’ve made recipe rox for wedding parties, 450 of them for the last wedding. Couples use them as name placecards on the table, showing people where to sit and then they can take them home as their favor. I’ve had couples order little heart shaped bowls. Yes, I do special orders….a good lead time works, depending on the number. It’s best to order during the off-season when I have more time.
Do you have any recommendations for couples looking to get married in Bayfield?
Enjoy the beautiful outdoors! Some of my top recommendations on things to do in the area are:
1. Watch the sun set on Little Sand Bay beach with a bottle of wine.
2. Have a romantic dinner at Old Rittenhouse Inn.
3. Rent kayaks, bikes, mopeds or a sailboat with a captain to show you the Aposlte Islands!
4. Walk the Brownstone Trail.
5. Get a couples massage!
Here in Bayfield, Wisconsin we don’t hibernate inside all winter waiting for summer to come. We embrace the beautiful snow, cold, ice caves and the many outdoor activities and sports. Mollie + Isaac did not disappoint with their outdoor January wedding.
Read more about this beautiful winter wedding along with their advice for planning a winter wedding of your own!
Photo by JaneCane Photography
Isaac is a full time fire fighter and EMT in Burnsville, MN . I own my own hair and makeup business and do lots and lots of weddings! Isaac and I met a few years before we started dating at our CrossFit gym in the cities, we quickly become best of friends and didn’t see anything beyond that. All of our friends thought a little bit different and asked when we were going to start dating! Once we finally decided to go for it we never looked back, and each day was better than the last! We now have a perfect little baby boy Axel and couldn’t be more thrilled for our little family! We can’t wait for forever!
We had a very laid back casual outdoor January wedding! I was on Madeline Island with family and a few close friends getting really at a family home, took the ferry across bright and early so I could be able to style Isaac’s hair… he had strict orders of keeping his eyes shut.
We then traveled to Isaac’s family’s dock on Lake Superior to do our first look, we couldn’t have picked a better location! Then off to Good Thyme for our ceremony where my brother officiated our big “I Dos.” Someone was definitely watching out for us- gave us 40 degree weather in January! We then ate a wonderful brunch and our perfect day was complete.
Isaac was born and raised in Bayfield and I have family connections to the area, having traveled there a lot growing up. It seemed the perfect place, and not far for the majority of our family.
The advice I tell all of my brides – Don’t worry and stress about the small things, no one is going to notice besides you. Think about the big picture and the outcome of the day: getting to marry your best friend!
There is no doubt that planning a wedding takes a lot of work! With many moving pieces, a professional may be needed to assist with planning, coordinating or designing your big day. We spoke with Brittany Sneed, owner of Simply Gypsy Events, to learn more about her business and insight into the modern wedding.
Simply Gypsy Events is a boutique event and wedding planner based in Northern Wisconsin and Denver, Colorado. Some of their services include wedding coordination, destination elopements, luxury planning and design.
Keep reading to learn more about Simply Gypsy Events and Brittany’s advice for couples currently planning their wedding!
Photo Credit: Mad Chicken Studio
Tell us a little bit about yourself and your business.
I’m Brittany from Simply Gypsy Events. I love being behind the scenes, planning and styling. I love pulling together all the little elements that create a bigger picture. I love love; I am so passionate about kindness, happiness, and all-encompassing love. Simply Gypsy Events is a full service wedding planning company based in Northern Wisconsin. We specialize in curating bespoke and authentic events for adventurous couples.
How did you get into wedding planning?
I’ve always been a party planner. From holidays and birthdays to friend gatherings and just because parties. I love putting together details and being a host, I love to see people enjoying something I’ve created or put together. Wedding planning had crossed my mind once or twice when I was gypsying around the world searching for my calling, but it wasn’t until I started planning my own wedding that I was reminded why I love planning events. During that time I also realized my desire to help other couples in the process because I know it is hard to work, have a real life and try to plan a wedding.
What is your favorite part of a wedding to plan?
There are so many parts and pieces that come with planning a wedding. I love the initial meeting and beginning stages of learning a new couple and their desires for their wedding day – it really gets you excited for the process. I also, of course, LOVE the result – it is a wonderful moment seeing the dream wedding come to life.
Photo Credit: Mad Chicken Studio
Are there any wedding trends you love or would love to see brides leave behind?
Trends are continuously changing, not just with fashion or decor elements, but in the way couples decide to do things too. Elopements and small ceremonies are very popular now. I see couples looking for more ways to create their own wedding with elements that are unique to their style and relationships, which creates a more memorable experience.
How would you describe your dream wedding client?
It definitely makes my job easier to work with couples who are immensely happily in love. Their relationship is the muse and inspiration to create something beautiful. We definitely love working with clients who want to to have a unique wedding, rather than recreating something they’ve seen online.
Photo Credit: Mad Chicken Studio
What advice would you give to couples who are in the midst of planning their wedding?
Stay true to you and your relationship. You are the ones who will be looking back on this day for the rest of your lives, trends will change but you want to remember it being exactly perfect.
Don’t be afraid to ask for help in the planning process. Wedding planning is like a second job. If you need help, ask for it. People LOVE helping with wedding stuff. Your fiance, your friends, your bridal party, your family – they want to help you! No use getting stressed over something by thinking you have to do it by yourself.
Photo Credit: Mad Chicken Studio
As the wedding season is wrapping up, we took a look back at our #BayfieldWeddings Instagram favorites of the summer! There is no doubt that those getting married here in Bayfield love Lake Superior and the beautiful land around it!
Getting married here in Bayfield or a wedding vendor getting ready for 2017? Make sure you use the hashtag #BayfieldWeddings to catch our attention, your wedding could be featured on our inspiration page and/or social media! We picked some of our favorite #BayfieldWeddings pictures that are on Instagram so far. Enjoy!
Top 6 #BayfieldWeddings Instagram Favorites
I was given the privilege of photographing my fiends wedding a few weeks ago. It was a beautiful out door wedding at a running fruit farm that was once owned by my grandfather. . . . . #discoverwisconsin #TravelWI #bayfieldweddings #bayfield_wi #bayfield #wedding #outdoors #summer #sun #farm #wisconsin #upnorth #thenorth #photography #photographer #appleorchard
When most people think of beach weddings, they imagine a beautiful lake, sand between their toes and a quick, simple ceremony. Although all of these statements can be true, there is much more that goes into having your ceremony on a beach, a Lake Superior beach especially! We have spoken with local photographer Jamey Ritter of Bemused Design & Photography to hear her perspective on beach weddings – Enjoy!
Photo Taken By Bemused Design & Photography
From a photographer’s standpoint, what are a few great reasons to have a beach wedding?
Beaches don’t need any decoration. The setting itself is gorgeous. Sunshine and a light lake breeze are a great combination May-October on Lake Superior. It also gives you many different options for photos. Trees, the lake, docks, boathouses, are all fair game for couples and wedding party group photos.
What are some obstacles you have seen that come with having a beach wedding?
Nearly every beach wedding I’ve shot has been in full sun. “Great!” you say. Full sun makes everyone squint, lots of shadows, not to mention a beautiful bride typically in a white dress that is now as easy to look at as it is to stare at the sun. Do your photographer a favor and make a mental note of some shady and beautiful sites nearby.
Photo Taken by Bemused Design & Photography
Have a back up site
Rain seems to be especially difficult to predict here. A light mist is tolerable, but our summer storms can bring lots of rain, wind and big surf. Always have a backup plan.
Do you have any recommendations for couples planning a beach wedding?
The beach is a beautiful, romantic place to get hitched. Just plan for the contingencies and have a wonderful wedding day!