A New Direction – Farewell to A Northwoods Wedding

Hi lovelies, it’s Jenna, I’m here to share a bittersweet message with everyone. This has been something I have been thinking about for a long time, something I have questioned and toiled with but something that I am finally sharing. It is with a little sadness and a lot of dreaming that I am closing up shop over here at A Northwoods Wedding for the time being. This blog started almost three years ago when I teamed up with the amazing Britt, a girl I met via Twitter who shared the same passion for spreading the Midwest wedding love. It was something we thought the wedding industry was lacking and a void we wanted to fill together. Over the last three years ANW has posted blogs daily covering hundreds of incredible Midwest wedding vendors and sharing the love for north woods weddings. We have published over 750 posts filled with true love, beautiful details, and couples who are head over heels for one another. This has been a project that I have been working on for over a year on my own and something that will be hard to let go of because at the end of the day, I truly believe in the Midwest is best and it has something special to offer. 


Why am I stopping this beautiful thing? Time. They say time is money but to me, time is life and I have spent countless hours building up this very blog to be something remarkable, time that I could be spending with my little family, working with clients, or napping (we all know I love naps.) We are the top Midwest, Minnesota, and Wisconsin wedding blog and I am so darn proud of the fact that we have represented my “home” on the web so well. I have been publishing three posts a day for various blogs over the last year and my life has been run by this extensive blogging schedule on top of building my photography business and my print shop. All of these endeavors are near and dear to my heart but they have stretched me too thin and my dreams are way too big! It’s an incredible problem when you have too many good things in your life but sometimes that puts you in a place of choosing what you can say “yes” to. This year my goal was to find balance and instead I took on more projects, more work, and more time working. Some nights I just yearn to stop staring at a computer screen, sometimes I would rather sit and paint than go through submissions. Unfortunately, it is this corner of the web that needs change. Life is a juggling act, of this I am certain and maybe someday I can return to this project and give it the love and attention it desires. 

This blog post is a tough one – truly this space has been one that has connected me to so many incredible Midwest people, it has helped me see the industry as something beautiful, and has formed bonds over the last three years, that I wouldn’t trade for the world. We have celebrated so many weddings – big and small, detailed and DIY, from every spectrum of the wedding realm and for this I am so happy. When I look through the features we have shared, I am in awe of the amount of artists we have helped promote, the stories we have told, and the love we have brought to all ends of this world. We have stuck to our original vision of sharing what sets us Midwestern brides apart and have continued to share love stories that are truly beautiful. Your support has created friends out of followers, something I wouldn’t trade for the world. The truth is, this last year was a whirlwind. I captured over 30 weddings all over the Midwest and a few sunny destinations, I enjoyed personal projects from video to painting, we bought a home, adopted another pup, started a print stop and continued to dream about what is to come. At the end of the day, spending so much time behind a computer screen was not at the top of the priority list and being more present in life was a goal of mine. 

I want to thank you for all of your support, submissions, encouragement, and friendship over the last three years. A Northwoods Wedding was able to display gorgeous Midwest love stories because of you. Thank you for believing in our mission of focusing on moments, not details and for always reminding us that it’s love that makes a wedding gorgeous (not mason jars.) This has been something that has made my heart beat for the last three years and I tearfully say goodbye to this project that started with two wedding lovers dreaming and evolved into the most popular Midwest wedding blog on the web. We did it, Britt, we really did. I can’t wait to see what my future has in store, I can’t wait to focus my efforts on my family and life beyond ANW and I hope that you continue to follow along in a journey that is sure to hold many twists and turns. Forever in my heart, A Northwoods Wedding, you are mine. 

I’d love for you to follow my journey beyond ANW, there are a million ways to stay in touch and see the other crazy projects I’ve been working on. So feel free to follow along!

Website: www.photosbyjennaleigh.com // Personal Blog: www.photosbyjennaleigh.com/blog

Print Shop // Facebook // Twitter: @jennakutcher // Instagram: @jennakutcher // Pinterest 



AmyApril 25, 2014 - 9:09 am

This makes me sad as ANW has been a wonderful place for midwest inspiration and love!! I applaud you ladies for the work that you have done to share how really great the midwest is! Makes me miss home so much! But I am excited for the new life-living adventures you will be having. There is nothing wrong with saying no and I love that you know that you have bigger dreams ahead! All my best to you!

CathleenApril 25, 2014 - 2:11 pm

I think it is safe to say that we will all miss you. Good luck with your endeavors and if you ever decide to bring ANW back to life, we will welcome you back!

ChelseyApril 25, 2014 - 5:27 pm

Would you be open to have someone take it over?

MandieApril 25, 2014 - 9:27 pm

Whatever you do next, you’ll be amazing at. I have spent countless hours of my life dreaming of awesome projects, blogs, companies, and ideas that would be so much fun- but when weighed against time with my favorite people and my little fur family, they always lose. You will not regret choosing your loved ones over work, even when the work is so much fun. XoXo, and best of the best wishes to you in your future endeavors!

Campfire Engagement from Nicole Spangler Photography

The bride and groom are getting married at a vineyard in Wisconsin this fall. They wanted to incorporate wine into their engagement session. Why not enjoy a bottle around a campfire with roasted marshmallows. They wanted a warm, cozy vibe to show off the beautiful Minnesota fall days. After the campfire, they headed to downtown Stillwater with Nicole Spangler Photography and did some urban shots, including stopping traffic to get an epic shot of the couple dipping in the middle of the Stillwater lift bride (which is being demolished soon).


Photographer:  Nicole Spangler Photography // Other: Villa Bellezza

Rainy Chicago Engagement from Artistrie Co.

Not only did these Florida natives get up at the crack of dawn for their engagement shoot, they battled the cold Chicago weather and rain. When a down pour is on the forecast, most couples would want to reschedule, but Liz and Phil battle the elements. The pouring rain was unrelenting, and didn’t stop for even a second during this shoot. Luckily, we found a few semi-rain free spots where we were able to stay dry…for a little while at least! At the very end of the session Liz and Phil abandoned the umbrella and decided to just go for it, running out into the wide open. They danced, they kissed, they laughed while Artistrie Co. caught every moment for them to remember. While the conditions and weather for this shoot weren’t ideal, we were still able to get great photos of this loving couple and now they have a great story to share!
2014-04-10_0021.jpg2014-04-10_0022.jpg2014-04-10_0023.jpg2014-04-10_0025.jpg2014-04-10_0024.jpg2014-04-10_0026.jpg2014-04-10_0028.jpg2014-04-10_0027.jpg2014-04-10_0029.jpg2014-04-10_0030.jpgPhotographer:  Artistrie Co.


Laid Back Farm Wedding from laurie marie photography

Caitilin & Tommy currently live in Hawaii and about a year ago they married at the courthouse. So this past November they wanted to have a celebration at home for friends and family. Tommy is in Naval Special Operations so his schedule is a bit tight so they wed on Black Friday. We took photos at Tommy’s parents hobby farm “Cherry Hill Farm”. The farm provided the perfect country living vibe for their laid back wedding day, captured beautifully by laurie marie photography. We can’t get enough of the beautiful florals (including the brides perfect floral crown) and the infinity scarves paired with the boots! Talk about making a Midwest winter feel fresh and colorful. 


Photographer:  laurie marie photography//Shoes: Aldo//Dress Designer: Anjolique//Cake Designer:Delicately Delicious//Band:General B and The Wiz//Other:Memories Ballroom//Event Venue:St. Francis Borgia- Catholic Church//

Cragun’s Resort Wedding from Jody Savage Photography

Josh and Kelsie wed at Craguns Resort near Brainerd Minnesota and it was absolute perfection. Not only are they both gorgeous, they allowed the day to unfold as if they no one was around and they were in the precious moments together. From the pops of color in Josh’s awesome attire to the blooming florals, each and every detail told a line in their story.  Jody Savage Photography was there to capture each and every moment of their stunning day. During the ceremony they branded a bench that Josh had made for them, Josh had found a way to make a custom brand for their special moment. It had started to rain during their ceremony but right before the branding and big kiss the rain stopped and the sun came out. Talk about beautiful timing and perfection, we absolutely love this beautiful Minnesota wedding.

Photographer:  Jody Savage Photography // Reception Venue: Cragun’s Resort & Legacy Courses

jody savageApril 16, 2014 - 10:08 am

So appreciate the feature today! This was such a great wedding for so many reasons and I love seeing it featured on your great blog today! Thank you!

Rachel MayApril 16, 2014 - 10:20 am

Congrats Jody! Such a lovely feature!

Kelsy McCartneyApril 16, 2014 - 10:25 am

Such an adorable couple and beautiful wedding!! Love the images by the willow tree… they always get me! :) Congrats on the feature, Jody!

Kati DeckerApril 16, 2014 - 2:55 pm

Such a sweet wedding! And that location is AMAZING!

Lindsay MaddenApril 16, 2014 - 4:49 pm

What a beautiful wedding! Congrats on the feature Jody!

wendy laurelApril 17, 2014 - 11:01 am

just pure gorgeousness!!!

victoria o'learyApril 17, 2014 - 12:47 pm

what a beautiful wedding! LOVE the emotion you caputured! :)

Lisa O'DwyerApril 17, 2014 - 1:16 pm

What a beautiful setting for a wedding!