Rachel and Chase celebrated their love in a winter wedding that went off without a hitch. When you see their stunning photos in the snow, you just might be convinced to plan your own winter wedding!
The Early Days
The couple met on Tinder in 2015 while Rachel was in school at Iowa State. Chase, however, lived in Atkins, so they decided to meet halfway when they were ready to meet in person. They played a round of golf in Marshalltown with high stakes: whoever lost had to buy dinner afterward. (Fun fact: Chase played golf in high school with our Ariel!) Of course, Chase lost and had the honor of getting their dinner that night. The next time they got together, Chase introduced her to his twin girls, and they had a blast!
In the winter of 2018, Chase asked Rachel to marry him. He had his mom and daughters help him pick out the ring, and he wanted the twins to be there when he proposed. “I could tell he was super anxious about something because he got all dressed up and ready to go several hours before we were going to leave. So, I decided to get ready myself and when I came out, there all three of them were. It was absolutely perfect,” Rachel remembers. They then headed out to celebrate with his family!
Winter Wedding Planning
They began planning their wedding for February 16th, 2019. Rachel says, “Winter weddings. Think about it. We got SOOOO many deals having a winter wedding. Yes, you have to worry about cold, and bad weather and all that, but if you are looking to save, definitely add it to your options. Plus, our pictures turned out AWESOME!!!”
She advises other brides to get started with their planning right away. “It’s never too early. Don’t be afraid to be ‘too’ on the ball. I got told by a few vendors when I called that they don’t do reservations that early. And if I got told that, I called someone else. Vendors book up fast no matter what your wedding date is.”
Rachel found her Stella York wedding gown and Dessy bridesmaids at Hope’s. “All the girls there are so helpful and relatable,” she says. We felt the same about her and hit Rachel and her sister Nicole up to model in our bridal show in January! It was so fun for us to get to know them even better through that.
We love how REAL Rachel is about the stress that comes with wedding planning. “If you have something you need to get off your chest to your fiancé, do it. Get that fight out of the way before the big day,” she advises. Rachel remembers that two weeks before their wedding, she was worried that Chase didn’t want the “big wedding” they were planning. She confronted him, and while it turned into some tears and yelling, they needed to work through that together. “Weddings are not all fun, there is a LOT of stress. But don’t let it bottle up. You have to talk about it.”
Rachel and Chase also made sure they took time to have some fun together and stay connected through the wedding planning. One way the couple bonded before the wedding was taking dance lessons. “If you’re thinking of taking lessons for your first dance, do it!” she says.
Rachel & Chase’s Wedding Day
“It was the most perfect day. Nothing was forgotten, we weren’t rushed, we had enough food, people showed up on time, I looked and felt fantastic, the weather was chilly, but the sky was clear. Everyone I loved was there and it was the best day of my life,” Rachel says of their wedding day.
The couple had many special touches that made their wedding personal. They honored Rachel’s grandma who had passed away 18 months before the wedding with things such as an Aladdin (their favorite Disney movie) locket with her picture on Rachel’s bouquet and a pew blocked off for her.
Their wedding favors were decks of cards with their name and wedding date on it because they love to play cards, and Rachel chose two different shades of purple for her bridesmaids, so her sisters were recognized in some way.
As perfect as the day was, the end of the night and next morning brought some comical mishaps. “Chase forgot an extra pair of shoes, and one of my bridesmaids went home with my overnight bag. So, the next morning Chase was barefoot in the hotel lobby in a t-shirt, and I was in his sweats and sweatshirt and my wedding shoes outside in six inches of fresh snow brushing off his car. It made a fantastic story.”
The newlyweds enjoyed a dream honeymoon to Italy they planned with Trips to Italy, LLC. “Every detail was taken care of. Each hotel had a bottle of wine or champagne waiting for us. All of our arrangements were seamless with plenty of time to do our own thing,” Rachel raves.
They started off in Venice, where they woke to church bells and water splashing. Then they took a train ride to Bologna (Rachel’s favorite), where they went on a personal food tour. From there, they headed to Florence, where they took in the art, more good food, and a tour to ancient San Gimignano. Their next stop was Siena, where Rachel had the best panini of her life and found her new favorite wine when they visited a winery in a castle. They finally headed to Rome, where they spent the next three days touring the Colosseum, Vatican City with the Sistine Chapel and St. Mark’s Cathedral. “It was quite possibly the best vacation ever and so very needed after the long, stressful wedding planning year we had before that,” Rachel remembers.
Rachel says that their transition to married life has been wonderful. She recommends that couples take time right away to figure out their plan for finances. Besides the pain of switching health insurance, cell phones, and her name, it has been fantastic! “I love coming home to my best friend every night and getting to unwind. I wouldn’t trade it for anything.”
Rachel and Chase, thank you for sharing your beautiful winter wedding with us and allowing Hope’s Bridal to be a part of your special day! We really enjoyed working with you and wish you a lifetime of happiness!
Iowa Winter Wedding Vendors:
Ceremony: St. Paul’s Lutheran Church, Williamsburg
Reception: Bella Sala Reception and Banquet Hall, Tiffin
Photographer: Simply Radiant Weddings
Food: Dostal Catering
Florist: House of Flowers, Williamsburg
DJ: Unique Events
Limo Service: Diamond Limousine, Fairfax
Wedding Cake: Renee Krueger
Sheet Cakes: Costco
Reception Decor: Nancy Jacoby
Make-up: Mackenzie Waughop
Bridal Party Hair: Kelly Wilson
Flower girls and Mothers’ Hair: Michelle Jones
First Dance Choreography: Dance New York, Cedar Rapids
Belt: Perry Bridal