They say the way to someone's heart is through their stomach, and for Kevin Stover that turned out to be true. In September of 2013, a friend introduced him to travel blogger Marina Goldi, and he bought her a corn dog. "We spent the entire night after that talking about life and our travels," she recalls.
In April of 2017, the couple was on one of the many trips they had taken together, this one to Paris before heading to Marina's family's hometown of San Marino, Italy. "A broken-down train led to a missed flight, so we wound up stuck in Paris, which could definitely have been worse!" says Marina with a laugh. That evening, they went up to a rooftop bar to watch the sun set over the city. "Kevin got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife," she says. "Those were the words he used, and that was the very best part!"
The bride, who also is the branding liaison for Soho House in Detroit and collaborates with local brands and companies as an influencer and photographer, has always adored Zingerman's Cornman Farms. "They've become a second family to Kevin and me, and it only made sense to have our wedding at a place that is an extension of our lives in Detroit," Marina explains. "I've been a part of many events there, and we knew we were in the very best hands!" With food and wine as their priorities, the couple got to work putting together a modern, minimalist wedding in a natural farm setting.
"We wanted to create a big and welcoming dinner party," says Marina. She turned to longtime friend Haley Letrola, owner of Detroit Cultivated, and essentially chose a venue and bridesmaids dresses before handing over the reins. "I knew I could let Haley really run with it," Marina adds enthusiastically.
On June 8, 2018, the couple gathered with 115 guests, a killer team of vendors, and the farm's resident lambs and baby goats (seriously!) to make it official. Whether you're marrying in the city or tying the knot in a barn, the photos by Jill DeVries Photography are loaded with inspiration you'll love!
Marina was torn between two gowns, but her mother and grandmother made the final decision easy. "They knew which one was the One, and I really could wear my dress every day, I love it so much," says Marina. She chose a Rue de Seine gown with a plunging V-neck and a geometric lace train. "My Nonna is an incredible seamstress, so she did all of my alterations and even made my veil," the bride says.
The boutonnieres and corsages were all accented with dried grasses. Instead of traditional corsages, the mothers and grandmothers wore white roses affixed to brass cuffs.
"Cornman Farms' baby goats and lambs wore flower necklaces with hand-dyed silk ribbons, and made their way into a lot of our photos," says Marina. "We even brought them to cocktail hour! Guests joked that our wedding really was the GOAT!"
Kevin wore a light gray suit for the summer celebration, choosing a subtle plaid pattern to make it feel unique. "He and his groomsmen all wore brown loafers without socks—we've spotted them doing the same at a bunch of other weddings since then!" says Marina.
The bride fell in love with a form-fitting dusty rose dress from BHLDN for her bridesmaids. "They all hated me and immediately bought Spanx, but everyone looked amazing in that dress—even my eight-months-pregnant cousin!" the bride raves.
The couple exchanged vows on the farmhouse lawn, with acrylic chairs leading to an altar flanked by lush arrangements in modern Grecian-style vases.
"I'm terrified of public speaking, so we decided to use traditional vows and then exchange cards with personal vows to one another," says Marina. To personalize their ceremony, they asked one of Kevin's groomsmen to officiate. "He's the funniest person we know, and did such a beautiful job of commemorating our story," says the bride.
Escort cards were hung on hand-dyed silk draped from handmade dogwood branches. "Dogwoods are my mom's favorite flowers, but they weren't in season," says Marina. "We hired the Striped Petal, who make handmade paper flowers, to create nearly identical artificial blooms to add to the branches."
The couple reused the acrylic chairs from the ceremony in their dinner tent, where long tables were set and covered in white linens. Pops of color were added in the form of pillar candles and small floral arrangements in bud vases.
Marina was thrilled to have the farm's executive chef provide the catering, even though their guest list was on the larger side. "Our guests raved that it wasn't only the best wedding food they'd ever had, but some of the best food they'd eaten in general," she says. "We had a family-style feast with some of our childhood favorites, as well as plenty of vegetarian and vegan options." The meal included a tomato and basil soup, pasta stuffed with bolognese, chicken piccata finished with Laurent Perrier rosé, and mushroom and basil risotto.
"Our band, Bluewater Kings, was amazing!" says Marina. "They played for our ceremony, led a second line from dinner to the barn for dancing, and then kept everyone on the dance floor all night." After an evening surrounded by their closest friends and families, the newlyweds made their getaway beneath an arch of sparklers.
"Don't get hung up on the things you can't control," Marina advises. "Be in the big moments, but also in the little ones, because those will be come some of your favorite memories."
Wedding Planner: Detroit Cultivated || Venue: Zingerman's Cornman Farms || Bride's Dress: Rue de Seine || Bride's Shoes: Steve Madden || Bride's Jewelry: BHLDN || Hair & Makeup: Elle Studio || Bridesmaids' Dresses: BHLDN || Engagement Ring: Jared || Wedding Bands: Simmons and Clark || Floral Design: Loden Floral || Paper Flowers: The Striped Petal || Catering & Cake: Zingerman's Cornman Farms || Music: Bluewater Kings Band || Transportation: Metro Cars || Accommodations: The Graduate Hotel, Weber's Boutique Hotel || Photography: Jill DeVries Photography