Intimate Cathedral Wedding

December 18, 2022

Originally posted on Intimate on March 14, 2014 by Gaelan. I loved working with Eleanor & Max on their wedding and wanted to share a little of their day.

Living continents apart – the bride in England and the groom in the United States – Eleanor and Max reunited in Portland for a foggy wedding ceremony under the St. John’s bride in the stunningly beautiful Cathedral Park. Surrounded by their immediate family members and their photographer Kim Smith-Miller, the couple radiated pure joy as they exchanged their vows and spent their fist afternoon as husband and wife wandering through the park and the streets of Portland. These two and their beaming smiles will seriously warm your heart!


Eleanor, 28 & Max, 42

Portland, OR

Wedding Date: October 19, 2013

Number of Guests: 4 (Max’s Dad was unable to attend the ceremony due to health problems but we were able to spend time with him after the ceremony)

Wedding Ceremony Location: Cathedral Park, Portland

Wedding Reception Location: We didn’t have a conventional reception but we went for brunch at a really nice place called Accanto after our morning ceremony. We kept the afternoon free for a bit of wandering and a celebratory slice of pie before an evening meal at Laurelhurst Market Restaurant.


Why did you have an intimate wedding?  

We’re both quite private and it just felt right to have a small ceremony with immediate family.


What are some of the challenges that you faced planning an intimate wedding?

I don’t think we came up against any major challenges! We felt very similarly about how we wanted our wedding to be so making decisions about the ceremony and how we would spend our day felt very easy. As Max and I are currently in separate countries (he’s in America and I’m in England), I got a little anxious about organizing the trip over to America for myself and my family. Silly as it sounds, I think I was at my most stressed-out when packing my suitcase!


Was it difficult to pare down the guest list?

No – we had decided that we would only have immediate family at our wedding day.

Did you have any ‘issues’ with the small guest list from friends and family? If so, how did you address them?

No, we did not encounter any issues, but I think having such lovely photographs of the day has helped – it means that we have been able to share memories of the day with other people who are important to us, like family members in England.


What were the highlights of the ceremony?

The whole ceremony felt special. The weather created a very distinct and memorable atmosphere. The St. John’s Bridge was shrouded in fog as we made our vows (interrupted by the odd foghorn from the river) and then the sun burst through as we walked around the park down to the water.


What were the highlights of the reception?

I really enjoyed the spontaneity of not having a conventional reception. At the time, I was worried that we didn’t have a particular plan for the afternoon (aside from brunch and an evening meal) but meandering through the Portland streets was a lovely way to spend the day.


What was the best thing about having an intimate wedding?

The best thing was not having to worry too much about coordinating and organizing so we could enjoy the day and focus on what was important to us.

What advice do you have for couples who are considering an intimate wedding?

Go for it!



Photography: Kim Smith-Miller

Flowers: Botanica

Hair: Bliss Spa and Salon

Officiant: Reverend Maureen Haley

Dress: Vacation Vintage on Etsy