When I was a little girl, I read The Secret Garden over and over, always imagining how beautiful it’d be to walk through the garden. And today, I’m getting something even better. Its a ridiculously beautiful winery wedding from Elisabeth Millay (does it get any better??) and it’s made my day – no, year.
From the stunning bride… Joel’s Aunt and Uncle own a vineyard in Calistoga, so the town has become our Napa Valley home away from home since we began dating. We wanted a venue that would capitalize on the region’s famous weather and natural scenery and wouldn’t require much additional work since it was a destination wedding. Hans Fahden did this tremendously well with a mix of vineyards, gardens, lilly ponds, wisteria covered terrace, and mountains – it literally made us gasp. Although we initially wanted a venue that was 100% outside, when we saw the Hans Fahden wine cave, we knew it was the perfect balance and an authentic nod to our love of wine.
Instead of focusing on all the details, we focused on the most simple aspect of a wedding – proclaiming our love for each other in front of the most important people in our lives in a naturally beautiful setting. We kept all the wedding details very simple, which was easy at Hans Fahden (no extra ceremony decor, the only extra florals were small bouquets, which were simple baby’s breath, wine cave dinner centerpieces were only candles.)
My favorite moment of the day was the ceremony. Those 30 minutes were the happiest of our lives. We created it from scratch with our officiant, which resulted in a beautiful mix of tradition and personality. The ceremony included vows that were 1/2 tradition, 1/2 written by ourselves, a wine sharing ceremony, a violin solo by Casey’s uncle, and a beautifully written speech from our officiant, which shared insights and stories from conversations with both of us. Also, our dog/ring bearer, totally stole the show.
The below is an excerpt from a HuffPo article and it was our mantra for a simple, love-focused wedding. “If you’re planning your wedding right now, please just close the magazine. Log out of Pinterest. And look at the person you want to grow old with. Remind yourself of why you’re doing this. And really CELEBRATE when that day comes. Don’t stress about your shoes or your cake or your flowers. Don’t stress about anything. When it’s all over, you will be married, and surrounded by the people who know you and love you most in the whole wide world.”
Photographer: Elisabeth Millay | Videography: David Bettencourt | Wedding Dress: David Fielden | Stationery: Twin Ravens Press | Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids Dresses: J.Crew | Catering: Alex's Catering | Calligraphy: Michelle Clarke | DJ: AMS | Grooms Attire: Jiwani | Bowties And Cumberbunds: Vineyard Vines | Hair + Makeup: Susie Chhuor Studios | Signature Drinks: Vineyard511 | Wedding Venue: Hans Fahden Vineyards