al fresco family style dinner tables setup and styled on the terrace at villa terrace in Milwaukee

Emily and Caleb’s water-inspired al fresco wedding at Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum.

Al Fresco Wedding at Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum


Emily and Caleb wanted a wedding that was genuine and expressive of who they are as a couple. They envisioned an organic, semi-formal event with eclectic touches. Incorporating water into the day was also important to Emly and Caleb since they spent a lot of time fishing together. Villa Terrace’s view of Lake Michigan was the perfect backdrop for their event.

To achieve this look in their decor, we mixed shades of blue with creamy whites and a few subtle pops of yellow and gold. To add an eclectic touch, we used vintage furniture pieces, antique plate table numbers, hand-died ribbons, and deckle-edged watercolor invitations.

Emily and Caleb loved that Villa Terrace was such a picturesque location. Highlighting the natural beauty of the space guided our design decisions. We used floral installations to accentuate their favorite architectural elements. For the ceremony, florals organically crawled up the pillars that frame Lake Michigan on the terrace.

Creating a wedding day timeline is such a custom process. For Emily and Caleb, making sure they got some alone time after their ceremony was of utmost importance. Being on the water and enjoying lake activities is a big part of their relationship, so a sailboat ride on Lake Michigan was the perfect mini-getaway.

Along with the stunning photos from Justin Salem Meyer, I’m excited to share some of Emily’s thoughts on the planning process and wedding day!




“We were so thankful we chose to spend some quality time right after being married. We went on a relaxing sailboat ride on Lake Michigan. This was the same boat and captain that we rode with on the day we got engaged. We were able to just relax and soak in our marriage.”




“Due to the number of life challenges that hit it was hard at times to continue to plan the wedding. Kristin was the most amazing, positive, and supportive wedding planner. Without her, we would have been way off track. I (Emily), being in the wedding industry had some things that I was more particular about. My expectations were high but the vendor team chosen was perfect. Caleb was the quintessential fiancé and helped with every single decision. He was such an involved groom and was present for every meeting.”




“Make sure to take some time right after the ceremony for just you two. Even if it is only 10 minutes. The wedding day is so busy and it is nice to just have a little alone time with one another. Remember what the day is about. Don’t get too caught up in the little things. Make sure to stay true to yourself. It doesn’t need to be a glam wedding if that isn’t you. It could be an intimate wedding and still be fabulous. There are no rules so just have fun!”


The Vendor Team:

Venue: Villa Terrace Decorative Arts Museum

Planning + Design: Natural Elegance Events

Catering: Gracious Events

Photography: Justin Salem Meyer

Videography: David Schulta Films

Floral: Bird & Bumble

Stationery: Coqui Paperie

Day-of Paper Goods: Minted Weddings

Hair + Makeup: The Hitching Post

DJ + Lighting: Sound by Design

Linens: BBJ La Tavola

Rentals: Relics Rentals

Wood Cross-Back Chairs: Collins Custom Creations

Shuttle Service: THINKLimo

Rings: Bowman Jewelers

Bride’s Dress: Schaffers

Bridesmaid’s Dresses: Miss Ruby’s Boutique

Live Painter: Katie Geis Fine Art

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