When we set out planning the wedding, I knew there were some things I just didn't want to "mess" with. Most of these things were details that the wedding industry and tradition seemed to say must be done: a slew of bridesmaids, pew bows, a full mass, a gigantic and ornate wedding cake, lots of kitschy group dances (the bridal party dance, the macarena, etc.), favors, etc. One of these little things was an aisle runner. Long story short -- my mother really believed I needed an aisle runner.
The subject repeatedly came up. I tried to explain to her: "If I have one, I don't want a cheap paper one, and it's just not something I want to invest time or money in. But if you realllly want me to have one, go for it." It became a joke. I'd get home from work, and (since I always talked wedding with mom on the way home from work), Patrick would ask if I won the aisle runner debate yet. Well, I lost. But not in the end.
Taking matters into their own hands, my mom and wonderful friend and neighbor Marty crafted the beautiful aisle runner above from about 100 ft. of simple ivory muslin. In its center, they hand-stenciled the gorgeous "Sarah Jeanne and Patrick Dale" from our invitations.
It was stunning in the church, and I was glad she did it. Interestingly, it is one of the things about the wedding that guests have mentioned the most. "Oh I loved your aisle runner!" or "The whole day was so beautiful and lovely, especially the aisle runner." Mom's even had requests from others for homemade runners. This is hilariously ironic, but so sweet.
I like to think that piece of muslin took on the generous and loving hearts of its makers and that's why it was so adored.