Where's the party at?
Venue | Mustard Seed Gardens
Florals | Lauren Brown, Indy Urban Acres
Rentals | Violet Vintage
Top & bottom photos | Jackie Santana Photography
The venue is arguably the most important (and possibly most difficult) decision of wedding planning. Picking a location and date sets everything else in motion--and often sets the rest of the budget, too.
My husband and I absolutely love fall, and we wanted to subtly incorporate the season in our wedding with natural elements and colors like burnt orange, navy and cream. I personally don't like the feel of most hotel weddings, so that left us with garden and barn-based wedding sites. After looking through spreadsheets of price comparisons and visiting our top three venues in person, we chose Mustard Seed Gardens in Noblesville.
Why we chose it: Mustard Seed Gardens is family-owned property with a lot of history. (The original deed for the land signed by Andrew Jackson is framed and hanging on the wall in the property's Metsker House.) It had beautiful options for both outdoor and indoor weddings, which gave us a satisfactory plan B for inclement weather. (Turns out, we needed it, but more on that later.) The pricing plan included most items we needed, such as tables and chairs, and we had the flexibility of choosing a caterer from a list of preferred vendors. Mustard Seed also was starting its on-site wedding bar service last year, so we took advantage of their competitive pricing.
Other perks of the venue:
Outdoor cocktail hour area with hanging lights and stone-paved seating area enclosed by trees
Outdoor fireplace with an area to serve hors d'oeuvres
Vintage-style bridal and groom suites
Do yourself a favor: Don't pick a venue simply because the site rental fee is the lowest.
I can't stress this enough. At first glance Mustard Seed Gardens had the highest rental fee of our top choices, but because it included most of our item rentals and a day-of coordinator (by the way, Bethany Cavenaile is the absolute BEST) and because the preferred vendors didn't have any food or drink minimums, we ended up saving money. A LOT of money. For the cost of food and drink and venue at one of our other choices (say, an average of $3,000 for venue and $15,000 for food and drink minimums), we got our venue, food/drinks for 100 people, day-of coordinator, first-choice photographer AND both of my wedding dresses. Boom.