Texas and rustic elegance go hand in hand. They’re like campfires and s’mores; both equally awesome on their own but so much better together. And while we’re at it, another great combo can be found in the peachy florals of  Unexpected Elements, the vineyard filled backdrop of Driftwood Estate Winery and all the lovely imagery captured by A L Collective. It’s an ode to the perfect Texas wedding and you can see it all unfold right here.

From the Groom… It didn’t take long for me to realize Jennifer was the woman I wanted to spend the rest of my life with. I began looking at engagement rings after having been together for only four months. I know it sounds crazy (believe me, I still can’t believe it myself sometimes), but I had never felt happiness like this in my entire life and had every intention of keeping it that way. As much as I wanted to propose as quickly as possible I was trying my hardest to wait for the perfect opportunity to present itself. For our six-month anniversary I was able to plan an amazing trip to the Georgia mountains. At first, I was planning to pop the question while we were there, but as chance would have it Jennifer received some very exciting news just three weeks before we were to depart for the mountains: a job offer in Austin, Texas. With only a few weeks to get our lives together and set up living arrangements in Austin, it was stressful enough without a ring burning a hole in my pocket. After we had both informed our current employers of our plans to explore new horizons, we started throwing our lives into boxes and getting travel plans set in stone. Two weeks later we embarked on a 900 mile, 18 hour journey to Austin – our new home.

We spent the next four days unpacking and preparing Jenn for her first day at work. When Jenn left for work bright and early Monday morning, I hit the streets as well, visiting companies whom I had contacted while in Tallahassee. I was contacted only two days into my job search by a company that I had reached out to via Craigslist. After two interviews I was offered a position, which I quickly accepted. Now that we were secure financially and comfortable in this new city, I felt like I could finally begin looking for a place to propose. During my job search, I had covered a lot of ground and conveniently worked a few special locations into my daily job-hunt routes. In particular was a beautiful little park only a few miles from our apartment called Mt. Bonnell. Mt. Bonnell is a picturesque cliff on the banks of the Colorado River (also known as Lake Austin) that offers breath-taking views of the city and surrounding hill country. While there for my first visit, I told two women on a walk that I was a recent addition to the city and looking for a place to propose to my girlfriend. They informed me of a small, community park that was much more private and just up the road. When I finally found it (which was not easy due to winding roads and not having an exact address), I knew it would be the place where I’d propose. The views were amazing and there wasn’t a soul in sight.

Being young and very much in love, Jennifer and I had made a point to celebrate our month-iversary (lame, I know) on the 25th of every month. Our seven-month anniversary was rapidly approaching, and I saw this as the perfect opportunity to pop the question (this way she knew I would plan something, but would hopefully have no idea how big that something was). With only a few days to go I had to act quickly to get everything set up. Fortunately, my new boss was really excited for me so he let me leave work early on the big day to gather all of the goodies necessary to execute my plan. The hardest part was waiting for her to get home from work. The suspense was killing me. She arrived at 5:15 and I told her we had dinner plans somewhere and needed to hurry (I was trying to get there before sunset, so the atmosphere would be perfect). We jumped in the car and started the short journey to the park. As we pulled up to it, Jennifer was just as impressed with the views and overall vibe as I first was. Initially, she thought we were going to a restaurant, but when I opened my trunk and pulled out the cooler and blanket she started to realize dinner was here for just the two of us with the beautiful hills of our new city. After a delicious meal, I knew it was go time. The sun had started to set, and painted the sky a beautiful shade of pink. Jenn snapped pictures while I packed all of the plates and trash up in the cooler and told her I was going back to the car to drop it all off so we could enjoy the sunset. This was true, but I also wanted to grab the ring that had been locked in my glove box since we left Tallahassee. I walked back to her slowly, trying to conceal the ring box in my pocket and asked her to please stand up and watch the sunset with me. She had the sweetest smile on her face while I explained to her how much she means to me and how much I love who we are together. Then I dropped to one knee and asked her to make me the happiest man in the world and spend the rest of her life with me. Through teary eyes, she finally said the word I’d been hoping to hear: yes. The rest, as they say, is history…

Wedding Photography: A L Collective / Wedding Venue: Driftwood Estate Winery in Dripping Springs, Texas / Floral Design: Unexpected Elements / Wedding Consultant: Kristi Treadwell of Joyful Details / Catering: Carino’s Italian / Wedding Cake: Central Market / Wedding Invitations: Twig & Lily / Décor + Rentals: Marquee Rents / Entertainment: Austin Party Machine / Transportation: Star Shuttle / Wedding Dress: Oleg Cassini via RecycledBride.com / Bride’s Earrings: Urban Posh / Bride’s Shoes: Steven by Steve Madden / Hair + Makeup: Stephanie Goldsmith of Haute Facade / Rings: Blue Nile / Bridesmaids’ + Mother of the Bride’s Dresses: Forever 21, J.Crew + Nordstrom / Men’s Suits: Jos A. Bank / Rehearsal Dinner: Casa Chapala

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