Handmade Travel-Inspired Wedding at Holman Ranch
June 13, 2014
Classic WeddingsRustic WeddingsFall Weddings
Holman Ranch is known around these parts for hosting gorgeous weddings, and this beauty designed by Paper & Plumes and coordinated by Engaged & Inspired proves that theory in the prettiest of ways. With bespoke handmade details around every corner, and a couple so in love you can almost feel it through the screen - this gallery is just as gorgeous as they get.
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From the Bride...Our relationship started one warm and sunny Christmas day in Southern California 13 years ago. Both of our families gathered together for Christmas, and we were introduced to each other. I was 14 years old. This yearly tradition continued but it wasn’t until seven years later that our real story began... Google chat had EVERYTHING to do with it. Joel was sent alone on business to Dublin, and I was finishing up my final year of college in Utah. We would chat all morning and evening long about everything and anything from our favorite foods and bucket list items to our past relationships and thoughts on love as well as personal aspirations. We grew closer and closer each day, instantly becoming the best of friends. I knew I was going to marry Joel.

After I graduated from college a year later, I moved back to California and decided to visit Joel in San Diego. It was during this visit that we realized we were made for each other. For a few months, we spent almost every weekend flying to and from San Francisco and San Diego. Then Joel finally moved to San Francisco. Our friendship turned into love.

For three years, we visited the most beautiful places, ate the best SF has to offer, and continuously inspired each other with more and more love. We were lucky in life and lucky in love...and we still are.

From the Groom...On September 2, 2012, I had the honor of asking Sariah to marry me. After a day exploring Angel Island, solitary confinement at Alcatraz and getting hands-on with science exhibits in the Exploratorium, we ended our "tourist day" under the dome at the Palace of Fine Arts, our favorite place in San Francisco. I had suggested on our way out that we should take some self-portraits under the dome. Despite her positive response, I could tell she was onto me. It made for a very awkward and nerve-wracking 200 steps to the pre-determined area. Little did she know that I also had 20 of our closest friends hiding in the bushes and a couple photographers across the pond to capture the moment. I set up my SLR camera on the ground for a "timer" shot, but really I was shooting video the entire time. This, including my initial fumbling into my lens bag for the ring box, is what ensued:

Inspiration Behind the Day...Joel and I envisioned our wedding to be a fun, relaxed and magical day about everything we love in life. We wanted it to be unique with a lot of heart. From our save the dates until the last dance of our wedding, we wanted the whole experience to be special not only for us but for our family and friends as well.

Even before Joel and I became friends, we had a common passion for traveling. Now, our relationship thrives from new adventures in beautiful places. We also appreciate the labor of love put into anything handmade and beautifully aged/vintage so it was a simple and perfect decision to theme our celebration into a lovingly handmade, travel-inspired wedding.

Because we love nature, we really wanted to have our wedding outdoors, and Holman Ranch was the perfect place. When Joel and I first set foot on the property, it was love at first sight. The gorgeous grassy ceremony location overlooks their vineyards and olives trees with a breathtaking backdrop of the mountains. The romantic rose patio leads perfectly back to the rustic barn house and the last thing you see before leaving is that magical oak tree. We just knew it would set the perfect scene for the best day of our lives.

Paper and Plumes, an event planning venture with my best friend /maid of honor, with the help of some family and friends, was behind the design and every handmade detail of the wedding. From the 40-foot lace burlap runners, chevron napkins, luggage tag escort cards, hand-typed and folded paper airplane name cards, to the rustic wood framed world map guest book, customized chalkboard and wooden signs, travel straws and wood crate tables, we did it all…and we loved every second of it.

Favorite Memories of the Day...Per the advice of our wonderfully talented photographer and friend, Stacey, we took a few moments to have a private moment right after the ceremony. Sitting alone with my new husband immediately after we vowed to love each other for the rest of our lives was truly priceless. I felt very lucky and grateful to have such an amazing man and partner with whom I can share forever.

Another unforgettable moment was our first dance. Our talented and dear friends, Chris and Laura Stephens, performed an acoustic medley of two of our favorite songs: “You are the Best Thing” by Ray LaMontagne and “Better Together” by Jack Johnson. Their beautiful voices, the positive energy surrounding us from all of our friends and family and our love...it was one of the best moments of my life!

Noteworthy Items...Shoes. Christian Louboutin from Paris. It is our favorite city in the world, and I wanted to have a piece of it with me for the wedding. 

Photographer. After talking with Stacey over the phone, I knew she would be the perfect photographer. I loved her style and her personality. However, she was above what we had budgeted, so we talked about it and decided to look for other options. A couple weeks later, Joel suggested that I call Stacey to tell her our final decision. Inside, I was dreading making the phone call because I just loved her so much, so I kept putting it off. Joel kept checking in with me to see if I had called. When I finally called, Stacey mentioned that she had just been booked for a wedding on the day we wanted to reserve. My heart dropped, as I had secretly hoped we would be able to book her somehow. She then said, “Do you know a Joel Gutierrez?" Best. Wedding. Surprise. Ever. I was ecstatic! Not only was I about to marry the sweetest and most thoughtful man, but we will also have Stacey Pentland Photography there to capture it. :)

Carriage Lawn. This was one of my favorite areas at the wedding. We created a lounge area for our guests using haybales from the ranch and custom-designed wood crate tables (thanks, Dad!). We also set up a scotch library for Joel and all of our whiskey-loving friends using a vintage wheeled cart from India. It was a hit! At night, the cafe string lights courtesy of our wedding coordinator, Engaged & Inspired, framed the area just perfectly.

Wedding Website and Invitation Suite. Inspired by rossplusjess.com, I learned how to use Adobe Illustrator and Squarespace to create a custom wedding website for us (www.luckyinlifeluckyinlove.com). I also worked with Mary Rauzi, an amazing graphic designer, to create a custom save the date and invitation suite to get our guests excited for the wedding!

Vendors...We're very thankful to the best vendors ever. The day wouldn't have been so perfect if it weren't for each of them. Joel and I will be forever grateful.