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Magical Woodland Wedding in Black River Falls

Valerie & Brandon's whimsical woodsy wedding at Burlap & Bells.
Sydney Stevens

Brandon Tarbet knew Valerie Iehl was a catch when they met in 2011 through an ultimate Frisbee competition in Chicago. After a getting to know each other, the couple began their romance the following year. The next eight years were filled with hikes, backpacking adventures and adopting their dog, Brix. Brandon wanted to propose in the mountains, but COVID derailed his plans, so, he opted for a walk around the Windy City, stopping at all their favorite patios until reaching Lake Michigan, where he asked Val to marry him. The couple’s love of the outdoors was on full display at their wedding, as loved ones gathered in the serene forest at Burlap & Bells, where they exchanged “I do’s” in front of a macramé backdrop made by the bride and her mother. Val’s mother and grandmother thrifted the candelabras that adorned the tables and the champagne glasses guests raised in toasts. “The whole décor process was a labor of love,” Val says. Despite some rainy weather, their wedding day was bright, with a multi-color palette featuring yellows, oranges, blues and purples. As the rain cleared, everyone headed to the dance floor to celebrate the newlyweds — nothing could rain on the newlyweds’ parade.  

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