Forget everything you know about ranch weddings. This gem is bringing a fresh twist on rustic incorporating warm copper tones and the prettiest emerald hues crafted by Vanessa Noel Events along with blooms by Precious and Blooming Floral Design. And the #1 rule? Nothing stuffy allowed. We think they nailed it. Sneak a peek at the full celebration so beautifully captured by Anna Delores Photography and Etch Films.
From the photographer… Sammie and Dave had few requirements for their wedding: excellent live music, an intimate setting that would bring their geographically-scattered guests together, fun cocktails, ice cream sandwiches, and, most importantly, nothing stuffy. They also checked every wedding planning decision against their “nothing stuffy” rule, which kept the entire weekend authentic to their personalities and their relationship. The bride’s favorite color is green, so the decision to start with Greengate Ranch & Vineyard to craft an intimate weekend escape made perfect sense. With a canvas of rolling hills of vineyards, a vintage barn, and serene pond, the couple worked with Vanessa Noel Events to build a design around the natural beauty of the venue with seasonal inspirations and modern lines.
Photography: Anna Delores Photography | Videography: Etch Films | Event Design: Vanessa Noel Events | Floral Design: Precious and Blooming Floral Design | Stationery: Prim & Pixie | Catering: Field To Table Events | Hair & makeup: Blushing Beauty | Band: Dart Collective | Transportation: SLO Safe Ride | Wedding Venue: Greengate Ranch & Vineyard | Additional rentals: Central Coast Tent & Party | Bar trailer: Whiskey & June | Ceremony musicians: Vince Cimo | Decor (himmeli): Elbow Grease Design | Dessert: Negranti's Ice Cream | Lighting & draping: Islay Events | Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Rentals: All About Events | Specialty rentals: Scout Rental Co. | Tabletop rentals: borrowed BLU | Wine supplier: Central Coast Wine
As a Creative Director turned real bride, it dawned on me pretty early in the process that planning a wedding isn’t so different from the branding work I do every day. In the branding world, we’re trying to ensure that there’s a certain level of visual cohesiveness at every touchpoint – or a visual strategy if you will. Today I’m going to walk you through those same principles and how to apply them when curating your own wedding style!
Don’t worry — I’m not going to deprive you of Pinterest. In fact, consider this your permission slip to go ahead and go wild on the platform. Create a new board, and start pinning anything and everything you love as it relates to your wedding, keeping in mind your personal style and the story that you and your partner want to tell during the big day.
This might show up in a color palette you’re drawn to, a feeling that an image evokes, or a specific styling detail that resonates with you that you’d like to see incorporated. One thing to keep in mind as you’re going through this step is that you don’t need to limit yourself to only pinning wedding-related content. Inspiration can come in many forms, so think about pulling typography samples from a magazine spread that mimics the modern vibe you might be attracted to, color palette inspiration from an interior decor image, and texture references for your tablescape from an outfit detail, for example.
Once I feel like I’ve pinned a decent number of images that represent a wide range of content, I like to go back through the board, reevaluating the pins and making notes on each photo. We want to eliminate any images that don’t feel 100% right, so ask yourself what each image represents for your brand and why you’re drawn to it, eliminating it if it doesn’t make the cut. For the images that remain, we want to make actual notes in the caption of each photo, noting what you like about it and what it represents in relation to your wedding. It’s important in order to capture these thoughts to refer back to and also to communicate them with others who may be involved in some capacity down the line.
The next stage is one of my favorites, when I actually start to print out my inspiration images, starting to look for themes, similarities in content, and natural groupings that occur. You’ll likely have already started to notice these in the inspiration gathering stage, but now it’s time to pinpoint exactly what they are, giving each grouping a name and also jotting down any other tone words and details that feel relevant and help to bring the theme to life.
The main theme that emerged for me after going through this process was what I’ve started to think of as “enchanted disco forest”. Knowing that our wedding is taking place at our family cottage in an outdoor setting, it’s important to us that we complement the venue instead of fighting it, while still incorporating that dreamy, whimsical style that I love.
I have a longstanding love affair with disco balls, and alongside the silvery hints that I started to notice in my inspiration, it seemed like a natural detail to incorporate. I love contradictions in styling details, so the idea of incorporating the sparkly, celebratory disco balls in an outdoor setting with a tangle of wild greenery is totally up my alley, and a DIY challenge that I can’t wait to take on. Early on in this process, I had also found a set of vintage, hand-painted swan favors that felt like a nod to the enchanted forest theme with their fairytale-worthy quality, so those will also be making an appearance, likely as part of the table design.
As these details start to take shape, this is also around the time when I start to collect color swatches (if you don’t have access to a Pantone book, a quick trip to your local paint store for colour chips will work just fine!) and any other little pieces that will give you a sense of the styling details, colors, textures and finishes you want to include as part of the design for your day. I love ribbons for an inexpensive and flat lay-friendly addition to your inspiration board, and depending on the fabric, they can give you a nice hint of color while also pulling in a texture. Think sheer silk vs. rich velvet or gold trimmed lace vs. a solid pop of color. Other ideas are fabric swatches, like the lace I chose for my dress design, sequins or other embellishment that you’re planning to incorporate, or even jewelry and accessories that start to tie together some of your other styling accents.
Keep everything in a folder along with a selection of your final inspiration images, and you’ll have an easy-to-reference collection of all the details as they start to come together, ensuring that everything is going to work together and bring your vision to life exactly how you picture it. And if you’re one for sharing little hints on social media (guilty!), these little treasures also make for the perfect behind-the-scenes post as you lead up to the big day.
It’s always a special treat when you get not only a wildly gorgeous wedding but its equally as pretty rehearsal dinner. There’s a whole lot to inspire packed inside this Ojai Valley Inn & Spa celebration crafted by All You Need Is Love Events along with layers of all white blooms by JL Designs, stationery in the loveliest shades of blue by Copper Willow Paper Studio and Erich McVey’s beautiful imagery. Pore through the collection and don’t forget to hit play on the sweetest film by Hoo Films below.
Now have a look at the prettiest of rehearsal dinners that kicked off this wedding weekend. With layers of peach and coral blooms and long al fresco tables, it’s just as pretty as they come.
From the bride… My vision of my wedding prior to planning was pretty simple. I wanted it to be elegant but still casual and relaxed. We wanted the setting to be jaw-droppingly beautiful, but still make sure people felt comfortable in just a sun dress or button down shirt.
We went with neutrals, as I do with most things in my life! Our invitation suite (Copper Willow) and other paper items were a beautiful ash grey with gold pressed calligraphy. Our florals (JL Designs) were an elegant assortment of whites and greens, including natural accents like thistle and pampas grass. I wanted the style to be slightly undone: loose florals, draping greenery, mismatched bouquets, and a naked cake. We also included a lot of natural wood elements, like signage and seating, as well as rustic terra cotta and stone vessels.
We had some amazing natural wood signs created for our main menu board and I really wanted to mimic those and have signs for the welcome, guestbook, hashtag, etc. I purchased raw wood signs from the local craft store and stained them to match. Then my sister is law, who has beautiful hand writing, painted them! They turned out really well and it almost made me wish we had tried to do more DIY things!
Of course the entire day was packed with incredible moments, but one moment that stands out was being able to tell all our loved ones a big secret we had been keeping. My father passed away exactly six months before our wedding day. When we got engaged we already knew he probably wouldn’t make it to our wedding. So just a few weeks into our engagement we had a private ceremony in my childhood backyard, and he walked me down the aisle. We kept it a secret for almost a year and revealed it at the ceremony by sharing photos that were inside an envelope on everyone’s seat with “please wait to open” on the seal. It was a really special moment to share and a meaningful opportunity to remember and honor my dad.
I saw my Mira Zwillinger gown online and from that day forward no other dress stood a chance! The second I put it on I knew it would be the one. I did my due diligence an tried some others on but to me, nothing else came close. I found the dress online because before my first appointment I literally looked at the websites of every designer that boutique carried. I am so glad I did that because you can really focus once you get there and narrow down your choices to what you already know you like. Plus, it’s really hard to tell what the dresses look like on a hanger, so if you have seen them on models already it is really helpful!
My first piece of advice is, if budget allows, get a wedding planner! Trust me, I am the type of person that likes to be in control but having a planner doesn’t mean you have to relinquish that. It just makes it hundred times less stressful! My planners (All You Need Is Love Events) immediately understood my vision and provided me with a few great options for all our vendors. They were there to make every step of the process as easy as possible. They had also worked with many of vendors before which made planning, communication, and the big day all run extremely smoothly. There were a couple things that went wrong on the day, but I never knew of about any of them until it had already all been resolved!
My other piece of advice is to start a scrap book! There will be so many fun events leading up to your wedding and so much you will want to remember. From bachelorette parties to showers, your friends and family will put so much thought and effort into all the beautiful little details at your events. I saved things like invitations, menus, sashes, and cards and along with a couple photos from the event put it all in a scrapbook! I couldn’t stand the idea of all of it living in a box in the closet never to be seen again. I absolutely love showing it to people and it was so much fun to put together.
Photography: Erich McVey Photography | Videography: Hoo Films | Event Planning: All You Need Is Love Events | Floral Design: JL Designs | Wedding Dress: Mira Zwillinger | Invitations: copper willow paper studio | Catering: Ojai Valley Inn & Spa | Hair & Makeup: 10.11 Makeup | Venue: Ojai Valley Inn & Spa | Ceremony & Cocktail Music: Teahouse Company | Photo Booth: Bosco | Reception Music: Red Shoe LA | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Rentals: Pretty Vintage Rentals