Thompson & Johannsen

Thompson Johannsen ImagineatPhotography 160716 Thomas Stacy Wedding 1133 Low

Thompson & Johannsen

Thomas and Stacy met in Wisconsin, moved to California, traveled the world, and eventually got married in the city where they met. The photos in the bar are actually taken at the exact table they met at, drinking the exact same drink – an Old Fashioned.

Q: Tell us about your wedding! What was the inspiration behind your day? Did you have a specific theme, style or color palette? Did you incorporate any cultural or religious traditions in any part of your day?
A: I was never one of those people who dreamed about their wedding day, so I was a bit overwhelmed with the planning at first! We were living in Los Angeles and wanted to get married back in Madison, Wisconsin, where we both grew up. Thankfully, my husband has very good taste and he actually designed the color palette. One piece we wanted to make sure we included was a recognition of marriage equality, so we asked the officiant to include some of the language from Obergefell v. Hodges in the ceremony. We wanted to keep the ceremony short and sweet, and true to us.

Q: Let’s talk wedding decor. How did you decorate your space for the ceremony and the reception? Was any part of the decor DIY?
A: This was another area where I had no idea what I wanted. My mother-in-law is a graphic designer, so she created our save the dates, invitations, programs, name cards, and even the design for the pint glasses we gave out as favors. My mom and dad went to the space multiple times (since we were still out in LA) to meet with the coordinator to make a plan for lights, set up, and dinner choices. Our families stepped up big time to help make the spaces beautiful! Our ceremony was in a church designed by Frank Lloyd Wright, so the structure was very unique. The reception was in a banquet hall that opened up to a lakeside grassy space, which was such a great vibe to have for a summer wedding.

Q: What were the florals like in your wedding? Did you use flowers in any of your design elements like the bridal bouquets, centerpieces or ceremony backdrop? Did they play an important part in the overall style of your wedding?
A: This was one of the only areas I had a specific vision; I really wanted red roses for myself and Thomas, and white roses for the bridesmaids and groomsmen. My amazing mother-in-law and sister-in-law had a lot of experience working with flowers, and put the bouquets together themselves. They were absolutely gorgeous, and it was so meaningful to have them made by family! My father-in-law and his wife did the tabletop decorations, which were absolutely lovely, and guests were able to take them home at the end of the night.

Q: Did you personalize the day in any way (food trucks, guest entertainment etc.)? What were some of your favorite parts of your wedding?
A: We wanted to make sure we stopped by The Old Fashioned for pictures on the capitol square in Madison, because it’s where we met! My brother-in-law bought a round of old fashioneds for the entire wedding party while we waited for “our booth” to open up. That was a really fun break in the day! Music was another one of the ways we personalized the day. My childhood friend’s dad played guitar for the ceremony. During the recessional, two of our best friends sang a duet beautifully (You and I by Ingrid Michelson). My husband really wanted a unique entrance to the reception, and settled on The Alan Parsons Project (think 1990 Chicago Bulls). He had a good friend announce all of the wedding party members as they entered with made up stats, it was pretty funny! Thomas also made the entire playlist (in a specific order) for the reception – we loved it, and it was a hit with the guests. It was wonderful to have it so personalized; we were able to add some songs that were really meaningful to us.

Q: Let’s talk fashion. How did you choose your wedding day look? How did the groom? Describe both looks in detail.
A: Thomas knew he wanted to wear a suit and a vest, and he didn’t want to go with traditional black. He ended up going with a gray/green vest and navy suit combo that went wonderfully with our color pallet. The red rose he wore really popped! I hunted around for a dress without any idea of what I wanted, and thankfully fell in love with one pretty quickly. Thomas bought a pair of beautiful diamond earrings for me as a wedding gift! I’ve been going to the same hair stylist since I was 16, so there was no question in my mind who would be doing my hair. I gave her a vague sense of what I wanted (updo, incorporate some flowers). She came up with a beautiful style that stayed put and was quite unique! As far as the standbys go…Something old: Grandmother’s wedding ringSomething new: Dress & earringsSomething borrowed: Flowers for hair (from bridesmaid)Something blue: Shoes

Q: How did you meet? Tell us about the proposal.
A: Thomas and I met at a supper club called The Old Fashioned in Madison, Wisconsin. Thomas approached the group I was sitting with because he knew the man my roommate was dating at the time. The roommate’s boyfriend was not the most social person, so he didn’t introduce Thomas to the table (it was apparently a little awkward), and I didn’t even notice what was happening, so Thomas walked away. Later that night, I went up to the bar to get another drink and he came up and said hello! We started dating almost immediately. A couple of years later, he received a job offer out in sunny Los Angeles, so I moved out with him. We quickly found our favorite beach in Malibu, and Thomas proposed a couple of years later on the bluffs above Point Dume in Malibu (at sunset, of course, after a wonderful day at the beach).

Q: What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?
A: I’m not much of an in-the-spotlight-gal, so a lot of the big moments were special, but also a little stressful for me. One of my best friends came up to me once the dance party was going (when I could finally relax a bit) and told me that the moon was up over the lake. She suggested Thomas and I head out to the dock and and get a picture together, and I’m so glad she did! Getting a quiet moment like that captured was so meaningful – a little bit of quiet bliss on a crazy day!

Q: Do you have any wedding planning or marriage advice that you’d like to share with other couples planning their day?
A: Make sure you are surrounded by people who make you happy and calm so you can really find moments to relax and enjoy the day. Everyone tries to tell you this day is all about you… listen to them! Do what makes you comfortable and brings you joy. My only regret is that we did not hire a videographer!

Photographer: Imagine’at Photography Reception Venue: Madison Elk’s Lodge Ceremony Location: First Unitarian Society Church
Photos Courtesy:
Imagine’at Photography