Private Residence, Killingworth

October 1, 2016

Photography by Meg Bisson for Katie Slater Photography

It started with a dining room table made of barnwood.When Samantha Martone (call her “Sam”) and George Gerard V (call him “G”) bought their circa-1831 home in Deep River in 2014, Sam’s dad made them a table out of wood they found in the barn on their property. Such a table deserved chairs with character, so the happy homeowners, a self-described “quirky couple,” who are “into the unexpected,” decided that a mix of mismatched antique chairs would be just the thing. And so, when it came time to plan their Oct. 1, 2016, wedding on a family friend’s 21 acres in Killingworth, renting the usual plastic folding chairs was just not going to cut it. Instead, the intrepid pair, who grew up in Madison and began dating in 2008, spent more than a year searching tag sales, auctions and flea markets for the perfectly imperfect combination of mismatched chairs and benches for their outdoor ceremony and barn reception — they bought 130 in all (and attention brides-to-be: they now rent them out for others’ weddings)!

Luckily, “we work well together,” says Sam, “and share the same vision.” That vision for their wedding also included celebrating the season. “Fall and October are very important to us,” says Sam. “We wanted to have very seasonal decor that embraced nature and the Gothic elements of Halloween, which I’ve always loved.” Sam and G grew most of the pumpkins and gourds used for centerpieces in their own Deep River garden. Squash vines from their garden were used in the boutonnieres, as were orange mums and fresh thyme. The arbor under which vows were exchanged was built by filling planters with curly willow branches and live ivy. “We planted the ivy months ahead of time, so it had time to grow up the willow,” explains Sam. 

Black-lace bridesmaids’ dresses, dim lighting and a plethora of candlelit lanterns delivered elements of Halloween — as did the weather. Sam and G woke up to pouring rain on their wedding day, but, despite the fact that the rain was supposed to continue all day, it was gone by

9 a.m. The gray sky that remained added what Sam describes as a “spooky, ethereal element to the day that we really enjoyed.”

Since being comfortable and having fun were also top priorities, the bride wore fringed moccasins with a lace dress she calls “raw,” “elegant” and almost “spider-webesque;” instead of a formal sit-down dinner, Old World Pizza Truck of New Haven served up pizza pie after pie (hello, peanut butter with bacon, caramelized walnuts and a cranberry drizzle); and Bishop’s Orchards in Guilford (with some help from Sam’s grandma) provided the dessert pies — apple, pumpkin, blueberry and Sam’s beloved ricotta. The newlyweds and many guests even brought tents to camp overnight.

“Our goal was to create the unpredictable fantasy wedding that existed in our heads,” says Sam. “It came to life before our eyes and was, in every way, a reflection of us.”

Dress: With Hearts in My Eyes, Wisconsin

Suits: StudioSuits

Hair/makeup: Allure Traveling Beauty,Glastonbury

Chairs: Connecticut Field Re

Dress: With Hearts in My Eyes, Wisconsin

Suits: StudioSuits

Hair/makeup: Allure Traveling Beauty,Glastonbury

Chairs: Connecticut Field Rentals, Deep River

Tables: Abbey Tent and Party Rentals,Fairfield

Pizza: Old World Pizza Truck, New Haven

Pies: Bishop’s Orchards, Guilford

Flowers: Steffie Raymond, North Franklin ntals, Deep River

Tables: Abbey Tent and Party Rentals,Fairfield

Pizza: Old World Pizza Truck, New Haven

Pies: Bishop’s Orchards, Guilford

Flowers: Steffie Raymond, North Franklin