It’s hard not to love a Napa Valley wedding. This is a proven fact. But it’s impossible not to love a wedding captured by What Shanni Saw and designed by Brilliant Event Planning. Impossible I tell you. Because that’s when you get this perfect mix of stunning Napa and serious style all captured so beautifully you just can’t help but smile, and you can see just what I mean right here.
From the Bride… We chose the Napa Valley for its location; having friends and family flying in from all over Australia and New York, we wanted to pick a halfway point for them, and also to ensure that they could make a vacation from the trip.
We went to Napa with a few locations in mind, Solage Calistoga was the hotel we stayed at, and we fell in love with the property. While it isn’t the traditional vineyard location that everyone expects from a Napa Valley wedding, the elegant casual feel of the Solage won us over, and was ideal for our wedding celebration.
The inspiration for our day was something I worked closely with Sarah to achieve. The key themes I wanted to work with were classic, elegant and very, very minimalistic. I wanted our guests to feel like they weren’t at a stuffy wedding – just at a nice lunch where they can relax and enjoy themselves, dance and have a great time.
As for the special touches that made our day extra lovely? While the beautiful and understated flowers and décor added to the laid-back atmosphere, I have to say that the one thing we and all our guests will never forget was the food – I still dream of the suckling pig we had as appetizer, and Hayden will never forget the coconut wedding cake he helped design.
From Sarah of Brilliant Event Planning… One of the first things on Julie’s mind when planning this wedding was location, location, location …and food. Julie and Hayden are not just Australians, they are New Yorkers as well, so picking a location that was accessible to both their Australian and New York friends was important, which led her to Napa Valley.
To accentuate the relaxed yet cosmopolitan feel of the resort, we decided on an all-white color palette for their elegant, afternoon ceremony and chic lunch.
Julie is a die-hard foodie and knew right away that she wanted only the best foods at her wedding. Upon arrival at the resort, each guest received a custom-made welcome basket by Woods & Co filled with locally-sourced items like salami, chips, tapanade and a bottle of Cakebread Cellars’ cabernet sauvignon, one of Napa’s finest wineries.
And, no wedding reception is complete without champagne and dancing! Julie and Hayden toasted to a bright and love-filled future with Julie’s favorite champagne, Billecart-Salmon, shipped to Napa especially for their big day, and shared their first dance to the song “Everything” by Michael Buble.
Wedding Photography: What Shanni Saw | Wedding Venue: Solage Calistoga in Calistoga, California | Event Planning + Design: Brilliant Event Planning | Floral Design: Julie Stevens Design | Officiant: Wine Country Minister | Private Chef: Ashton Keefe | Wedding Cake: Patisserie Angelica | Welcome Gifts: Woods & Co. | Day-Of Stationery: Abigail Hancock | Shoes: Ferragamo + Christian Louboutin | Beauty: It’s a Date