Our Vintage Vows

11/17/2011 02:52 am ET | Updated Jan 16, 2012

My wife Natalie and I met at The University of Michigan, where she was studying art history, and I was enrolled in the School of Art and Design. From early in our relationship, it was established that the way things looked mattered to us both. So, it didn't take long into our engagement for the sketchpads to come out, the color swatches to start flying, and the visual themes of our wedding to begin to take shape.

While I'd like to claim that our involvement in designing the wedding was 50/50, that wasn't entirely the case. It's true that we put in about equal parts work, but we also had a secret weapon. Our friend Lauren had experience rendering elaborate merchandising displays for a very creative, high-end retailer, and she agreed to help us out. Without her, we never could've achieved our vision.

Our goal was to meld two seemingly opposing aesthetics: A DIY indie feel, appropriate for two artsy young lovebirds, intertwined with preppy nautical sensibilities, well-suited for the yacht club backdrop that was to serve as our reception venue. "The preppy hipster"--like something out of a John Hughes movie or Wes Anderson, ahem, film.

The wedding party's mismatched attire set the tone, while sticking to a few repeated colors and patterns for the sake of unity. The look was tied together with classic Motor City elements, from vintage Detroit postcards, to locally-produced glass Faygo Redpop bottles and bags of Better-Maid Potato Chips offered as favors. These playful references to "Old Detroit" managed to feel somehow both traditional and distinct all at once.

Below, photos from our Big Day.

Adam Morath