An Alter or an Arbor is the pivotal point of the ceremony, with one quick passing of the hand, the Mother and Father’s duty to their daughter is handed over to her Love. It’s where one phase of a Bride’s life comes to an end, and where a new one begins. In this spot she succumbs to many responsibilities. She becomes the woman of the house, the caretaker of his heart, the foundation of their newly made family. This too is a place where two families become one, as their children are united at the Altar. So with this being said, wouldn’t you want your ceremony site to be one that creates a memorable moment in the lives of your guests as well as family? So do we! So here are some wonderful examples of how you can DIY all the way to the Altar! Brides are letting their personalities show this season with some out of the ordinary ceremony sites! Brides this season are proving that the traditional Arbor is not always the way you have to go!  Let us begin shall we!


altar octo

We want to begin with one of our very own weddings! This was from a wedding at the Octagon House last December. This was our Bride Blakely’s Altar, the old southern live oak stood at the edge of the water, and hung from the tree were sweet signs and candle lit lanterns, which added a rusticly romantic touch to her ceremony.

altar rustic

We  love this romantic rustic alter, if you have a carpenter in the family they just might come in handy for this one! If you are a bargain hunter this dresser could easily be found at your local flea mall or antique store, and with a little love and some paint it could be your centerpiece for your altar!


 This altar is simple and sweet, the hanging lanterns creates a glowing warmth of light, which sets the perfect ambience as well as great lighting for photographs! These lanterns are an easy find, all you need is a ladder and some luminaries. And viola! Instant romantic setting!


This little table altar is both cheerful and easy peasy lemon squeezy to do! All you need is a perfect little table find, some recycled old bottles and a few fabulous florals! Sweet and simple.

altar sat

This picture was taken last weekend from another one of our Weddings in Emerald Isle. This Bride chose to use driftwood and standing lanterns as her altar. We think this was both creative and crafty, considering that she and her Groom scooped the driftwood up from our local waters! (we apologize for the not so wonderful pic, we were working with an iPhone not a pro camera) 😉


Two words. Vintage Doors. We LOVE them! It creates a symbol of opening the door to your future as husband and wife.  


The naturalists in me is gushing over this simple rustic set up! If you have an amazing backdrop to work with, i.e. the mountains, the beach, or garden.  We would suggest creating something simple and romantic like this that will not take away from the beauty of your surroundings, but simply add to it.


Many Brides are going in the direction of utilizing Mother Nature, she’s all around us, so why not? With low-lying trees you can hang lanterns, bunting, market lights, ribbon streamers, flower balls, and crafty decorations like the folks pictured here! The possibilities are endless! So let’s embrace Mother Nature shall we?


This altar sets the “stage” for the perfect ceremony! We love how the curtains draped resembles a stage set for love! This too can be an easy DIY project, all you need is some reclaimed wood, a hammer, some nails, the perfect fabric and there ya go! Instant backdrop. 🙂



Now that you have gotten some inspiration, get out there and starting building your Altar for your Sensational Ceremony Site! Let us know what you think, we love to hear opinions!

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  1. Cathy Cook says:

    LOVE the tree with hanging lanterns!! Beautiful!

  2. meloberry says:

    We do too Cathy! It’s suuuuuper simple for anyone to do but yet it creates SUCH a beautiful back drop for an evening wedding.

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Amazing photos courtesy of Casey Futrell Photography, Common Dove Photography, Cynthia Rose Photography, Love by Serena, Chad Winstead Photography, Jim Colman Photography