Travis and Jenna’s Canadian Lake Wedding by Dawn Sparks Photography

The bride and groom share a kiss as they waterski across a lake by the mountains.

Travis and Jenna’s wedding is the perfect way to kick of the weekend! Filled with sweet DIY details, rustic lake charm, and, of course, a girl in a wedding dress water skiing, this wedding is just about as carefree and cool as a wedding can get. Is anyone else wishing they were invited? Read below for the list of DIY projects Jenna and her family put together for this wedding! Thanks to the lovely Dawn Sparks for sending us this memorable event.

Rustic, earthy birdhouse made of tree bark and a "welcome" rock along with a patch of flowers.The outdoor wedding venue by the lake, along with the couple's wedding rings resting on a leaf.The bride's bouquet of purple, green and white flowers rests alongside a tree stump.The bride's accessories, including her wedding dress, jewelry and floral garter. The bride is helped into her wedding dress by her bridesmaids. The bride poses in her wedding dress as she stands by the lake near a forest of trees. Bridal party accessories, including their purple dresses bouquets and rustic, earthy footwear.The bride sits on a roped swing in her wedding dress as she holds her bouquet.The flower girls, dressed in purple dresses and earthy footwear, holding rustic, grassy baskets.The bridal party and guests pose in their purple dresses together by a house.Wedding guests begin to arrive to the ceremony by a boat across the lake.The groom poses by the lake in a bright blue shirt and tan pants as he stands on a rock.The bride walks with her bouquet by a wedding welcome sign written on a chalkboard.The bride and her father stand together by the edge of a lake by the mountains.The bride and her father walk arm in arm by the edge of the lake by the mountains.The flower girls dressed in purple dressed and blue headbands begin to drop the petals.The bride is walked down the aisle by her father who is wearing a grey suit. Rustic wedding decor, including wide, dark vases resting on a tree stump.View of the entire wedding party as they stand together by the water's edge.The bride and groom share a kiss in front of their guests as they hold hands at the altar.Wedding guests watch as the bride and groom walk down the aisle. The groom carries his bride down the aisle as guests target them with Nerf guns.A case full of Nerf guns and various water guns rests on the ground for guests.The couple walk together on a path in a forest surrounded by greenery.The couple stand together by the edge of the lake as the bride holds her bouquet.The couple smile with each other as they stand alongside a tree in a forest.The entire wedding party pose together among the rocks by the lake.The reception head table decor, including purple covered tables and chairs and blue drinks.Wedding reception decor, including purple tables and chairs and blue drinks and leafy centerpieces.A photo of the couple in a rustic, wooden picture frame alongside a pinecone and tree stump.Various photos of the couple hung on strings held by clothespins.A green wedding cake featuring figurines of the couple riding a bike down a path down the side of the cake.A close up of the wire figurines of the couple riding a bicycle together as the cake topper.A rustic wedding candy bar sign, and one of the flower girls enjoying a large purple lollipop.The wedding reception candy bar, including various treats and a large, floral centerpiece.Rustic, earthy DIY wedding favors and candy bar signs.The bride and groom sit together on large rock overlooking the lake.The bride paddles down the river in a rustic, metallic canoe by the trees.The couple hold hands as they sit together in a canoe in a lake by the trees.The couple, along with the rest of the wedding party, set off across the lake in a boat.The bride, wearing her wedding dress, and the groom water ski across the lake.The bride rocks her wedding dress as she water skis across the lake.The entire wedding party take a leap off of a giant inflatable trampoline into the lake.The couple's initials written together in the sand enclosed within a heart.The couple stand together at the end of a dock by the lake. Other guests arrive alongside the couple carrying various items.A vintage sailboat sails across the picturesque lake by the mountains.The couple share a kiss among the trees, silhouetted by the setting sun.

What DIY projects did you do?

My vision for the wedding was a more natural and casual wedding.  We had a ton of DIY projects.  Here is a list of things we made ourselves:
Shoes- The whole wedding party went barefoot.  For the bachelorette party the bridesmaids and I got together and made “barefoot sandals”.  They are beaded things that wrap around one of your toes and then go around your ankle. We spent hours making them!
Bridesmaids Jewelry- I made all of the girls’ necklaces and then I had a friend make all of their earrings.
Garter- My mom and my sister made that.
Invitations- I designed them and then had them printed.  Once they came, my family helped to put them all together. They were designed to look like a passport since our wedding was in Canada and we needed a passport to cross the border.
Centerpieces-  I love white birch trees, so my dad and brother cut down some trees and then we drilled holes down them and planted moss and flowers in them and also put candles in them.
Flower Girl Baskets- We cut up some white birch trees and then my dad hollowed them out. I glued moss around the top of them and braided hemp string to make the handles.
Candy Table- We peeled white birch bark to wrap around containers and then also made some bowls out of the tree.
Program- I didn’t want to spend a lot of money on programs, so my dad had some big pieces of stone slate that we brought up and then my cousin used chalk to write out the program on the slates and we leaned them up against trees so everyone could see them during the ceremony.
Stage- My dad cut a huge log in half and then laid them near the lake for the whole wedding party to stand on.
Cake topper- Our cake topper was made by my brother and sister who welded and used wire to make two people sitting on a tandem bike.
Cake- My cousin made our mountain cake. We used a huge log bark and all for the base of the cake to sit on. She used candy stones for the path. We cut the cake with a machete!!
Pictures displayed- We used three big sticks that we tied together and then I used hemp string and little clothes pins to hang different pictures of Travis and me.

Did your wedding location hold a specific significance to you?
My husband and I got married at my parent’s lake house on Aylen Lake in Barry’s Bay, Ontario, Canada.  My grandfather was one of the first people to have a cabin on that lake and I have gone up there multiple times a year ever since I was born.  A lot of my family goes up every summer and we are usually there for about a month.

Did anything funny or out of the ordinary happen?
I always like to be different and do something unexpected.  One of the fun and different things we did for entertainment for our guests, was my husband Travis and I went water skiing in our wedding attire. Yes, I skiied in my actual wedding dress. You only wear it once anyways!  After that, our whole wedding party was brought out to the water trampoline in boats where we posed for a picture and then the whole wedding party, including my mom, jumped off into the water.
Also, when Travis and I walked back down the aisle after the ceremony, everyone shot Nerf gun darts at us instead of doing the traditional bubbles or bird seed. Travis scooped me up in his arms and ran me off to protect me from the darts!!

What issues did you have with planning a destination wedding?

My family was a huge help in helping me get the wedding together.  Since it was a destination wedding we had to make everything at home and then find a way to transport it. We had a 30′ trailer that we loaded and took up with everything from food, grills, large canopy tent, picnic tables, chairs and more.  I was able to go to Canada a few times to meet with the company who did my flowers and to take some of the wedding decorations up.  For our invitations, I made it look like it was a passport, so my whole family got together to make an assembly line to put them together.  My family also helped a lot with the crafts and detail I was making too.
Also, since our cabin was kind of far from any big city, we decided to do a small wedding, with just family and close friends.  We were able to squeeze everyone into our cabins and our friends’ cabins on the lake. We had fun being able to hang out with everyone the days before the wedding and my family and friends on the lake all came to help set everything up.

How did you know your partner was “the one”?

I could just tell that my husband was “the one.”  I could always picture us together and couldn’t imagine being with anyone else.  He was and still is my brother’s best friend and our families get along really well, which was important to me.  His mom had always wanted us to be together.  I just always loved being around him and I could be myself.  I never opened up to any one else as much as I opened up to him.  I could tell him absolutely everything.  He is my best friend. We met at church when we were in the 4th grade, and it was important to me that whoever I married was a Christian.

Any advice you’d give new brides who are just getting started?
I would say stay calm.  If something goes wrong on the wedding day just think of it as a fun memory.  I didn’t stress about much of anything and was really laid back.  I looked online for lots of ideas, and I wanted to make my wedding more natural.  I spent hours on www.etsy.com for inspiration.  Family is great for helping you get things together.

Vendors:

Photographer: Dawn Sparks (Her husband Noy was the assistant.  They are AMAZING photographers!)
Venue: Family cottage, Aylen Lake in Barry’s Bay, Ontario, Canada
Dress: Galina
Flowers: Killaloe Flowers

Check out more venues, photographers and vendors in Canada.

about the author
Sarah Sarah has been editing the blog at mywedding for four years. She enjoys watching classic movies, spending money on eyeliner that she never wears, and convincing brides to write thank you notes.

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