Dawn Ranch Lodge Wedding from First Comes Love Photo
October 19, 2012
United States
If you are more Earthy than city ballroom, more at home in a pair of boots + cozy sweater and if a weekend spent outdoors sounds like pure perfection then this wedding has your name written all over it. An affair celebrated amongst the greenery of Dawn Ranch Lodge with alfresco dining followed by pie eating and open air dancing. Church Street Flowers (a.k.a the gorgeous Bride!) whipped up all those outdoor friendly details, crafted every last centerpiece and found some time to design the invitations as well. Pretty impressive and made even more so at the hands of First Comes Love Photo. See all the gorgeous snapshots of this beautiful day right here.
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From the Bride... People would ask me what my theme was for the wedding, and I would respond, "Pretty." Being a florist, I have seen all color schemes and styles, and instead of choosing one, I just went with what was pretty. It was more a feeling than a style that I envisioned, which was warmth, softness,and happiness. We chose the venue because we loved the idea of having a two-day event. Since it was the only time we would get all of our favorite friends and family together in one spot, we wanted to spread out the occasion to a weekend-long event. We also love being outside, and the venue has beautiful outdoor spaces.

My favorite part of the day was during dinner when speeches were happening. The light was gorgeous at that time of day, shining through the heirloom apple trees. Everyone was so happy, eating good food and drinking good wine in celebration of the beautiful ceremony that had just happened. We had four speeches; one each from our mothers, one from the maid of honor and one from the best man. Each one of the speeches were clever and sweet. At that moment, I was thankful and content for everything around me, and I felt relief that all the hard parts were over, and it was then the time to celebrate!

My advice for brides: First, no one ever tells you that being engaged is the most stressful time of your relationship. It's like every problem that you ever had with your fiance comes to the forefront. Just know that it all passes as soon as you say "I do." Remember that you chose this person to marry, and you chose well. Second, along with the stress of your relationship — and there will be stress — there will be more pressure and stress on you from your friends and your family. My advice is to take your time planning your wedding (at least 8 months), and deal with each issue, one at a time. Don't overdo it on tiny details — no one is going to notice that the same ribbon that is on your bouquet was on your invitations. And be sure to stand your ground. Third, have fun. You only get to do this once. Enjoy every moment!

Wedding Photography: First Comes Love Photo / Wedding Venue + Catering: Dawn Ranch Lodge in Guerneville, California / Floral Design + Wedding Invitations: Stephanie Skuse of Church Street Flowers (The Bride) / Music: DJ Terry Stewart / Photo Booth: The Magnolia Photo Booth Co. / Pre-Marital Counseling: Sarah Jenks / Wedding Dress: Casablanca Bridal / Bride's Shoes: Kate Spade / Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew / Groom's Attire: Brooks Brothers / Groom's Tie: Salvatore Ferragamo / Groomsmen's Attire: Calvin Klein