If I could plan the ultimate rustic wedding, this is where I’d start. Intimate, cozy and set among the mountains with scenery so pretty, it almost doesn’t seem real. Of course I’d have Orange Girl there to capture every second, and with any luck my day would turn out exactly like this.
From the Bride… Doug and I met seven years ago at Murdoch University, in the most isolated city on earth: Perth, Australia. He was an exchange student while I was down there for my full education—we were flatmates for a semester and the rest is history!
Doug is American while I am Canadian and with immigration policies keeping us apart for any significant amount of time, we wanted to tie the knot sooner rather than later. We were engaged in March, 2013 and quickly booked our wedding in October, 2013—on the same day as my parent’s wedding anniversary!
We had a few very important considerations when planning our wedding: we wanted a small, intimate event, we wanted to get married in the Rocky Mountains where I’m from and we wanted to be relaxed and have fun. Most of our guests had to travel to be with us and many of them made a weekend of it. The venue that we chose, Buffalo Mountain Lodge, is a small, rustic resort, slightly removed from the Town of Banff. Each hotel room had its own wood burning fireplace and incredible views of the Rockies. With most of our guests staying at the resort, we couldn’t take five steps without running into someone that we loved. It was perfect!
With only seven months to plan, and recognizing how important it was to us that we be relaxed and able to enjoy our big day, we delegated some tasks to our family members. They were eager to be involved and so we leaned on their individual areas of expertise. Both Doug’s and my parents were invaluable in the planning process. For example, I explained my vision to my mother and let her run with the décor and Doug’s father is a wine enthusiast and he worked with the resort’s sommelier to choose the wine. This allowed Doug and I focus on other larger details, like the flow of the weekend and smaller touches that we felt were important.
Advice to future Brides: 1. Find a dress that is beautiful, represents you and is comfortable. I danced the night away in mine! 2. Delegate, if you can. It avoids stress and confusion on the day of the wedding. 3. Don’t forget to brief your wedding party on all the minute details (give them a guidebook with vendor details and contact information if you can) so that they know the plan and if there is any confusion, they can jump in and help. 4. Only focus on the small details that matter to you. We hand-made some small items to add a personal touch to the décor, but recognized that it was a slippery slope and were better off keeping things simple. We ditched some traditions like cutting the cake. 5. It’s not for everyone, but we loved having a small wedding. Sure, the guest list was challenging, but in the end we were so surrounded by love that nothing else mattered.
Photography: Orange Girl Photographs | Floral Design: Kelly's Mother + Doug's Cousin | Wedding Dress: Notte by Marchesa | Wedding Cake: Sunterra Market | Invitations: Sugar Paper Los Angeles | Bride's Shoes: Pour La Victorie | Bridesmaid's Dresses: J.Crew | Makeup: DIY | Hair: Sylvia At Jerome Salon | Groom's Suit: John Varvatos | Venue: Buffalo Mountain Lodge | Cocktail Reception Music: Werner Frey | Groom's Shoes: Banana Republic | Music: Kelly's Brother | Tie: The Tie Bar