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A California Winery Wedding with a Mountaintop Ceremony

For this sweet Bride, a wedding at her family’s winery was a dream come to life. The rolling vineyards and sweeping landscape made the perfect backdrop for a day designed with a “less is more” approach while still every bit as beautiful. Details like the seasonal floral arrangements by EV Floral Design and romantic invitation by Bella Figura quickly stole my wedding blogger heart, and thanks to This Love Of Yours Photography and Paperweight Films, you can see every bit for yourself.

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Colors
Seasons
Summer
Styles
Al Fresco

From The Bride…The vision for our wedding was an intimate gathering with the most beloved people in our lives at my family’s winery. We wanted to get married on a full moon at the height of the growing season before harvest, so we picked Saturday August 29th for these reasons. Simplicity was key and we embraced a less is more attitude. We wanted the floral arrangements to be seasonal from the Napa area or gathered from the property, the food to reflect all the bounty that this region of California has to offer, and to drink the wine grown from the land right outside. There were three things we wanted: a mountain top ceremony, a cave dinner, and an afterglow with a campfire under the stars. We wanted to wear outfits in light colors to reflect the casual attitude of the ranch and the airiness of the mountain setting. The overall feelings were warm, intimate, wild, gathered, elegant, simple, and homemade.

I remember the whole week in such detail, and basically every moment would be worthy to write about here! If I had to pick just one from the wedding day itself it would be riding in the horse carriage with my dad from the barn to the ceremony site, coming over the hill, and seeing all of the most important people in my life sitting on the top of the mountain, and Scott at the end of the aisle. It was the culmination of so many emotions and I wasn’t expecting it to hit me so hard. You get caught up in all the planning but there are moments like this that you just can’t plan for. From sharing that special last moment alone with my dad and seeing him tear up as we approached, to riding with the draft horse and thinking so much about my grandpa Jim (no longer with us) who founded the winery and how much he would absolutely love Scott and how much I miss him. Thinking about my personal history with the ranch and what the property means to me, realizing that everyone was there to celebrate our wedding day, and finally seeing Scott waiting for me down the aisle…You could say that I “lost it” in that moment which I was not expecting to do. It didn’t help that my dad was crying too, but I pulled myself together and didn’t cry during the ceremony, which I also did not expect to be able to do!

I love our venue because I grew up there, felt totally comfortable and relaxed, and I was so happy to share it with everyone! The winery staff went out of their way to help make our day special. I love everyone who works there a lot. And I really, really, really love the views from the ceremony site (a.k.a the picnic site), too.

One of the most important things was food and wine. Scott is a chef and my parents own the winery, so it was essential that the formal dinner (four courses with wine pairings) be excellent. We also paired a special cremant with the cake course and it was amazing! Scott helped collaborate on the menu and wine pairings and created two cocktails for the evening, one sparkling vodka, grapefruit and rosemary to kick off the reception and one Manhattan whiskey for after dinner with campfire and cigars.

My advice to planning Brides is to edit, and be OK with letting things go. Especially if you do not have a planner (like we didn’t), you have to accept some things will not go as planned. If you set your mind to think this way you will feel happy and free regardless of what happens on the big day. Remember, no matter what: it will be amazing, it will be the best day of your life, and you get to MARRY the love of your life! Also, unless your man is SUPER into all of the details, don’t burden your groom with a ton of wedding stuff. Have date nights where you focus on him, not the wedding. And lastly you don’t need to add a hashtag or a custom font/logo to every little thing – you can go crazy with personalization to the point where you feel like you are advertising your own wedding! If the venue and vibe is designed to represent you as a couple then personalization will shine through regardless, and you will save time and money.

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Photography: This Love Of Yours Photography | Cinematography: Paperweight Films | Floral Design: EV Floral Design | Wedding Dress: Saja Wedding | Cake: Forget Me Not | Invitations: Bella Figura | Bride's Shoes: Ancient Greek Sandals - Chrysso | Groom's Attire: Freemans Sporting Club | Venue: Pride Mountain Vineyards | Golden Fig Vases: Roost | Groom's Shoes + Tie: Suit Supply | Hairpiece: Hushed Commotion | Place Cards: Smock | Programs: Bella Figura | Vendor: The Bride's Aunt & Grandmother

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here

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Colorful Spring Garden Wedding in Sonoma Valley

You might assume today is just another Thursday, but you’d be sorely mistaken. Because today is a parade of pretty like never before, all thanks to Brett Heidebrecht. He’s sharing not one, not two, but three incredible weddings from his portfolio and each one has a style all it’s own. First up, a peony-filled garden soiree with florals by Poppy Lane Design. Go find your happy place right here in The Vault.

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Colors
Seasons
Spring
Settings
GardenWinery
Styles
Al Fresco

From the Bride… Kellen and I met in Spanish class in 7th grade and after 2 years of coy smiles, blushing cheeks and a wonderful friendship, we finally started dating freshman year of high school. Fast forward through high school, 5 years of long distance, and a big move to Oklahoma, and we finally make it to our long awaited engagement. During an afternoon stroll in my parent’s beautiful, tree-lined neighborhood in California he popped the question, and of course I said yes!

I worked in San Francisco for a wedding planner right out of college so I’d been dreaming and prepping for my wedding day for years. When I moved to Oklahoma City, after a few years working in a flower shop, I got back to wedding planning just in time to plan my own. Thankfully I had known about Annadel Estate Winery from my time in San Francisco and after one site visit with Kellen and my parents it was obvious this was the place for us. From a ceremony in the ruins, to cocktail hour under oak trees and a reception on the lawn surrounded by views of mountains and vineyards…it was the perfect setting for our day.

Kellen and I we wanted a wedding that would represent us–fun-loving foodies who enjoy the company of our loved ones and dancing the night away! Our vision for our wedding day was a cozy farm-to-table dinner party dining al fresco under bistro lights with our closest friends and family. We wanted our wedding to be bright, colorful and full of life…just like us! It really brought an element of warmth & joy to the entire day. We decided to bring the color in through the flowers. Working in a flower shop for two years made me a bit of a flower snob (I have to admit) so naturally I had to have them all! I decided on a mix of bright, citrus colored flowers to pop off the subtle white, blush pink and navy undertones.

What made our wedding special to us and our guests were the personal details. From day one we knew my big brother Matthew would be the perfect person to officiate our wedding. He is compassionate, loving, feels so deeply, and has an amazing sense of humor. It was important to to have someone marry us who knew us separately and together, and someone who grew up with us, watching our relationship grow. Boy was I right! Choosing Matthew as our officiant was the best decision we made and one that we will treasure forever.

Another important personal detail for us was including my gramma. She passed away 8 years ago and I wish more than anything she could have been there on the day of our wedding. My gramma had a love for hummingbirds and since the day she passed hummingbirds have come to represent and remind us of her. To include her I decided to add a little gold hummingbird to several elements in the wedding including our invitation, menu, and customized stir sticks. It was the perfect way to have her there with us – for the guests who knew her, when they looked down at their menus that hummingbird had a little extra meaning, and for those who didn’t know her.. well, who doesn’t love a hummingbird?

My advice for future brides would be to trust the team you hire. Do the leg work to find the perfect vendors for you, but once you hire them, let them do their thing :) With creative freedom comes unexpected and wonderful creations.

Photography: Brett Heidebrecht | Cinematography: Lovespun Handmade Wedding Films | Videography: Lovespun Films | Floral Design: Poppy Lane Design | Wedding Dress: Enzoani | Cake: Patisserie Angelica | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J. Crew | Catering: The Girl And The Fig Caters | Calligraphy: Blue Eye Brown Eye | Lighting: Creative Lighting Design | Band: Pop Rocks | Groom's Attire: J. Crew | Groomsmen Attire: Zara | Accessories: BHLDN | Ceremony & Cocktail Music: Jeff Campbell & Megan Slankard | Ceremony & Reception: Annadel Estate Winery | Design Consultant: Yelena Johnson | Design, Styling & Coordination: Gibson Events | Espresso Bar: Sweet Springs Rental | Getaway Car: Napa Valley Tours | Hair & Makeup Artist: The Glamourist | Invitations, Menus & Programs: Chirps & Cheers | Laser Cut Names: Sofia Invitations | Linens: La Tavola Linen | Lounge Furniture: One True Love Vintage Rentals | Rentals: Bright Event Rentals | Rentals: Blue Print Studios | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Shuttles: California Wine Tours | Tabletop Rentals: Frances Lane | Vendor: The Bride's Aunt & Grandmother

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
Romantic Fall Wedding

This wedding right here?  It’s exactly the reason why fall is my favorite time of year for weddings.  Soft and romantic with rich burgundy hues, it’s the kind of day that is equal parts pretty + cozy with a whole lot of DIY craftiness thrown in for good measure.  Planned by the oh-so-talented Lovely Day Events, I’m calling this “autumn perfection.”  See it all captured by Stephanie Court right here.  

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Settings
Lodge
Styles
Rustic

From the Bride… I always wanted to have a fall wedding because I love everything about the nostalgic season; from apple pie to tall leather boots to changing leaves. So when Ralph and I got engaged last July, I immediately began to scramble to pull together a wedding before the year’s end. In roughly four months, I managed to pull together a classy, rustic, fig-inspired wedding with a guest list of 75.

We were on a pretty tight budget for the wedding, so I decided to go the DIY route. We handmade and assembled nearly everything including the invitations and envelopes, the bouquets and centerpieces, the place cards, escort cards, and wine charms. Ralph even hand-cut and built the ceremonial arbor, which we now plan to build into the entryway of our front garden.

Rancho Wikiup was a magical place to throw a wedding. It is a 1920’s racehorse stable turned vacation rental. We were able to host the entire wedding party on site for two nights, giving us plenty of time for setting up and taking down the decorations. Ralph’s family and friends are from England, while mine are from Maryland and California. It was nice for everyone to have a chance to get to know each other better.

The wedding day was true to the typical northern California October, the leaves were beginning to change, but it was mostly overcast and there were also scattered rain showers. Fortunately, the sun made an appearance during the afternoon ceremony and the reception was held under the stable roof, so everyone managed to stay dry. I’m sure everyone always says this, but it was truly the most beautiful day of my life, weather included.

Photography: Stephanie Court Photography | Event Design: DIY | Event Planning: Lovely Day Events | Floral Design: DIY | Floral Design: Blooms By The Box | Cake: Oakland Bakes | Ceremony Venue: Rancho Wickiup | Reception Venue: Rancho Wickiup | Catering: Barbarian Gourment | Hair And Makeup: Rock Paper Scissors Salon | Officiant: Helen Emberly | Ceremony Music: Devon McClive And Sons | Rentals: Party Tents And Events | Vendor: The Bride's Aunt & Grandmother

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here