Ashley & Hope


"I can't pinpoint the moment I fell in love with her or knew I wanted to marry her, but my love for her wasn't a spontaneous combustion of feelings, but a bunch of moments that turned into this big one."

Tell us about your wedding!

Our ceremony and reception were both held at Skylight, and open concept art studio venue in the Santa Fe arts district of Denver, featuring 4000 square feet of brick walls, ceiling wood beams and market lighting.

My now-wife (Hope) and I decided to have breakfast for dinner, as brunch is our favorite meal, and we told each other we loved each other for the first time over French toast. We had appetizers of avocado crostinis, French toast sticks, and chicken and waffles. Dinner consisted of breakfast tacos, a pancake bar, breakfast potatoes, bacon, fruit, and dessert was a beautiful wall of donuts! Drinks consisted of all Denver craft beer, wine, and mimosas!

Our wedding theme was elevated bohemian with a touch of literature. Hope is an English teacher and literary buff, so we did vintage books as center pieces and had stacks of books throughout. Ashley and her mom made slate rock table numbers and signs. Unfortunately, her mom unexpectedly passed away 6 months before our wedding day. 

For florals, we did all greenery. Wild greenery + eucalyptus. We added touches of blues and burgundy throughout! We had greenery chandeliers and gold geometrics hanging from the ceiling, as well as numerous empty picture frames with greenery. Our wedding program was a newspaper, including a crossword puzzle, itinerary, etc. all with a play on baseball/softball throughout. The paper was titled the Daily Diamond, and inside we listed our bridal party under Rosters, with Team Ashley/Team Hope, pinch hitters included attendants, usher, etc. It was such a creative and wonderful representation of us!

We wrote our own vows, which ended up being quite the hit! We also played the “shoe game” during the reception, except we replaced shoes with mini basketballs and softballs. Hope is a high school softball coach and Ashley played college basketball. If you haven’t heard of the shoe game, the maids of honor wrote questions like “Who is the better driver? “Who is more likely to fall asleep in front of the tv?” etc. and we had our backs to each other and would have to lift either a basketball (for Ashley) or a softball (for Hope). People really got a kick out of the game, especially when we disagreed!

What was the most important lesson you learned while planning your wedding?

The most important lesson we learned was that although wedding planning can seem monstrous and a bit overwhelming, that at the end of the day, no matter what happens, you’ll be married.The day is to bring two people together, and as long as that happens, then that’s all the truly matters. My now wife, Hope, was far more relaxed than I, and anytime I was feeling overwhelmed, she’d say, “At the end of the day, you get to be my wife, and that’s the best thing in the world.” Having this mindset really allowed us to embrace the day and relax.

What advice would you like to give our QB readers?

Figure out what matters to you most, and prioritize. Do you really want breakfast for dinner (hint hint, that’s what we did), then make sure you budget accordingly. It was really important to us to have a videographer. Although the price was steep, we would do it again in a heartbeat. Don’t skimp on photography and videography. This was the most important investment we made, and it was so worth it. Even if you want to elope or keep it small and simple, we’d highly recommend investing in a photographer and/or videography that you feel represents your style and listens to you. We were so blessed to find two vendors that did so and more. 

We were initially against a wedding coordinator/planner, as we did a lot of DIY (do it yourself) things, in an effort to save money and really allow our personalities to shine. Ashley is quite creative, and really took on creating the day what we wanted. We thought it was something we wouldn’t need. We passed on having a wedding planner, and instead hired a day of coordinator. She was unreal! You would be surprised how many little things are involved in piecing together the perfect day. Our coordinator really handled everything well, and even took care of minor issues without bothering us, so we could focus on being present and in the moment on our big day. Our coordinator helped in the timing of the ceremony, set-up, tear down, table dismissal and ensuring vendors set up in the correct location, correct time, etc. She made the day an absolute breeze for us and we are so glad we decided on a day of coordinator. We would recommend our day of coordinator a thousand times over.


Photographer: Maggie Gulling (Based in Des Moines, IA and Kansas City, MO)


Videography: Chris Bramley of Majestik Wedding Films (Denver, CO)


Hope’s dress: A and Be bridal (Denver, CO)


Ashley’s dress: All My Heart Bridal (Kansas City, MO) Custom margo gown by Studio Levana


Catering: Syrup Denver (breakfast for dinner) & donuts by City Donuts (Denver, CO)


DJ: George Quiroga of Encore Professional Disc Jockeys (Colorado)


Greenery backdrop, hanging greenery chandeliers, and bridal party bouquets/boutonnieres by The Frugal Florist (Aurora, CO)


Guestbook artwork of the supreme court ruling allowing gay marriage: custom made by Kaius & Co (Des Moines, IA) 


Day of Coordinator: Lynn Berry of Simply Exquisite Events (Denver, CO)


Brides’ dress alterations: Donna Beth Creations (Denver, CO)


Custom newspaper program: The Wedding Press


Brides’ hair and makeup: Liz Yeager of Envision Salon (Ankeny, IA)


Bridal party hair and makeup: Demi Moore, April Franklin, and Ginny Thacker (Loveland, CO)


Custom wedding rings by Miro Jewelers (Centennial, CO)


Custom ring containing Ashley’s mother’s ashes, diamonds and leaves from her mother’s rings- Blown glass with ashes by Tiffany Koehn of Red ManX studio (Greeley, CO) and assembled by Miro Jewelers


Limo bus transportation: Denver Limo Express