Robyn and Ben were married in Tofino, British Columbia, in a beautiful seaside ceremony. I was really excited to hear from Robyn about their décor and heartfelt vow exchange. Their wedding decorations are less flower-forward and more focused on macramé and shibori details. For couples who are currently on the hunt for décor ideas that aren’t just like, tons of flower petals, this video is for you. Robyn hand dyed many of the shibori details herself (!) and leaned on her best friend Jolynn of Saige and Skye for the fibre pieces. Robyn and Ben also gave us a sneaky tip for writing great vows that I’m really obsessed with. 🙂 Read on for Robyn’s best advice (along with some stellar input from Ben!) and watch their full video by Evergreen & Bound Films below.
Your film did such a great job capturing the natural beauty of your ceremony venue. I loved the pretty macramé ceremony arch! Where did you find your wedding decor? What tips do you have for couples looking for a similar look and feel at their wedding?
We never wanted to take away from the natural beauty of Mackenzie Beach (ceremony) or the Tofino Botanical Gardens (reception) and thus, we wanted to add natural and organic elements such as the woven rope of macramé and indigo died shibori details.
I have to be honest, when searching for inspiration for our wedding I found that everything looked the same (hello, Pinterest). And it wasn’t until we visited our ceremony and reception site a few months after booking the venue when it dawned on me that it didn’t matter if we ate on blankets on the ground with paper plates, or stood against the vast and natural backdrop of the ocean – all of the elements we added were just to complement the spectacular beauty of Tofino. I had previously become interested in dying with indigo and my best friend Jolynn (Saige and Skye, @saigeandskye) is an incredible fibre artist, so these seemed like the perfect details for the wedding. Many of the shibori details around the reception site were hand dyed by me! Jolynn is a genius, and she hand made the beautiful wedding arbor. We also brought the carpet from our living room to the beach for our ceremony. We worked with the amazingly talented Aranza Grant (White Events Studio, @whiteeventsstudio) and she hand made a few of the centre pieces from drift wood collected on the beach and pulled the entire look together effortlessly.
It was truly beyond what I could have imagined and although we contributed as much as possible to the décor, we couldn’t have done it without our vendors! My advice for couples is not to get sucked too far into the Pinterest rabbit hole because what is possible for one venue (and season) might not be realistic for recreating at another venue. Each wedding is as unique as the couple, so have fun and remember that your guests might not remember if the table linens were a certain color or not. They certainly will remember the energy, love and emotion that filled the day!
Your vow exchange is amazing. It was so heartfelt (and funny!). Do you have any advice for writing A+ vows?
To be honest, Ben and I didn’t begin writing our vows until the final days before our wedding. I hadn’t planned for that to happen, but every time I sat down to write something it just didn’t feel right. Maybe it was inexplicable feelings that one has in those final days before the wedding that really got the creative juices and emotions flowing. It also helps that Ben is a professional writer and has an absolute knack for speech writing. I, on the other hand, just led with the heart and wanted to keep it light.
Your reception looked SO FUN. How did you decide on Tofino Brewing Co.? Would you recommend the venue to other couples?
We actually made a pit stop at the Brewery after taking our first look photos and heading to the ceremony site. Tofino Brewery an obligatory hang out spot every day that we spend in Tofino, so it only made sense that we hung out there with our incredible videographers (Love you Bre and Grady! @evergreenandboundfilms) and photographs (You too, Kristy and Ken! @blushwedphotos). We even ran into a few friends and snuck in some candid moments before we tied the knot. In terms of our actual venue, Tofino Botanical Gardens, I hands down would recommend it to any couple who wants to get married in Tofino. Our particular reasons for choosing the Gardens was because we wanted to show our guests the contrasting beauty of the big, expansive, never-ending beach and then to tuck into the lush and cozy rainforest which gave our out of town guests the perfect west coast introduction. We also chose the gardens because we could offer a ‘Grazing in the garden’ champagne cocktail hour. We took our guests on a tour of the Gardens with a few pit stops and offered champagne and canapés at each station along the winding forest trail. And on the west coast, it is often very wet, so the fact that there is an indoor space to dance was a great backup plan! We got to set up our photo booth on the patio which was perfect, AND (the best part of all!), we were able to take the resident sheep and goat out for a spin and to mix and mingle with our guests!
I loved the goat cameo! I also saw an amazing goat card, so I feel like I’m starting to sense a theme here… Can you tell us if there’s a special story behind all this goat love?!
I (Robyn) am a goat person. And many of our early dates were spent at the Beacon Hill Petting Zoo here in Victoria cuddling with the newborn and baby goats. There is something so sweet and charming about goats, and I can’t really give you any other reason as to why we love them – but we are obsessed with goats! One day we plan on having enough property (and weeds!) to keep goats.
What elements of your wedding day were most important to you and how did you plan for them?
Truthfully, the number one element of our wedding day was just being in community with all of the friends and family who were able to join us. We knew that the flowers, décor and extras weren’t really the be all and end all of the wedding. In fact, we decided to forgo on a head table, and just sit in the middle of the tent with our family surrounding us. It was the most important part of our experience, and I am honored to say that we were able to have intimate and memorable moments with each and every one of our beloved guests.
What is your favorite moment from your wedding video?
My grandmother was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer within a week of our wedding, and she passed away three months later. So I would be remiss to say that our favorite moment from the wedding video is seeing her beautiful face, full of love.
How did you find Evergreen & Bound and why did you choose them to shoot your wedding?
Instagram! A friend of mine had posted her wedding video that Bre and Grady had shot and I think I watched it three times in a row and cried each and every time. I was so moved by what they captured, that I knew they were meant to be a part of our journey and document our special day. Once I met with Bre in person, I had no doubts that it was meant to be! Not only are Bre and Grady insanely talented and bring all of the feels to their work, they are also two of the most amazingly generous, honest, hilarious, nerdy, beautiful, carefree, intelligent people that we know. And if anyone out there is wavering on whether they should spend the money on a videographer: DO IT! To see and hear all of the small and subtle moments of the day is priceless.
How did you meet and fall in love?
We met through mutual friends in a boozy Friday night, and danced the night away as ‘friends’, but one thing let to another and we began a long distance relationship that slowly built and built. Our love was a slow burn, which was very special because we were long distance, so it effectively allowed us to continue focusing on ourselves in the early days. I tried to convince myself that I wasn’t falling in love with Ben, but it was undeniable, and our connection was strong. Ben and I compliment one another, and our love still continues to grow to this day.
What do you think the ~secret sauce~ to your relationship is?
We are absolute goof balls and we are absolute opposites (Ben is an introvert, and I am an extrovert), but we always respect one another and honour who the other one is. Even when we can’t see eye to eye, we always come back to honouring one another’s perspective.
Describe your favorite date night.
It isn’t extravagant at all, in fact it is staying home! Fireplace burning, candles glowing, wine or beer and our favorite take out. We are simple people who enjoy relaxing in our comfortable home with our three kitties. We are total homebodies once the work week is done, and our Friday night tradition is perfect. We look forward to this night of the week because we can kick back in our space and really truly unwind together.
What do you think is the most inspiring thing about each other?
Ben: I am inspired by Robyn’s commitment to always working to improve herself.
Robyn: I am inspired by Ben’s ability to remain calm, cool and collected, even in the most stressful times. He always has the ability to remain level headed. This is something I am working on myself, and Ben is a perfect example.
If you were to guess, where will you be and what will you be doing when you celebrate your 10-year wedding anniversary?
Herding our goats.