Southern-Inspired California Summer Wedding
February 19, 2015
United States
Classic WeddingsHotels + Resorts WeddingsSummer Weddings
Continuing our Jessica Burke pretty party is a wedding that'll shoot to the top of your "favorites" list in about five seconds flat. In an effort to pay homage to the Groom's Southern upbringing, this sweet couple brought a little taste of Mississippi to Park Winters in sunny California. Studio MSV filmed the day to perfection and the gallery is one beautiful moment after another.
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From The Bride... The inspiration of our wedding was based on the foundation of our love, and our love for our families. Lee and I wanted the wedding to be a direct representation of our upbringing; therefore we delicately weaved remembrances of our childhood, small town traditions and elegant family heirlooms into our special day. Our wedding celebration began with our engagement day in Lee’s hometown of Oxford, Mississippi, on the steps of William Faulkner’s home of over 40 years, Rowan Oak. Here, he asked me to be his bride; with his family in the distance capturing the moment through timeless photos and joyous celebration. It was a day of pure Southern Hospitality from sunrise to sunset; a day we will cherish forever.

As news of our engagement arrived to our friends and family, Lee and I made the commitment to one another that our wedding day wasn’t about one day, rather. it was an unfolding of a journey with the help of our friends and family. We wanted to prepare a celebration by keeping perspective, tasking out our needs and being mindful of those around us. We realized it was okay to ask for support and input, as the perfect gift was what unfolded in those who helped us.

With the blessing of our parents, we selected Park Winters - in my hometown of Winters, CA - as our venue. The location encompassed our vision of chic Southern charm and vintage plantation feel. Located just outside of the Capay Valley, the property is situated on ten acres with unobstructed views of the Blue Ridge Mountain Range, vast farmland, sunflower fields and hosts an 1865 Victorian Mansion, which was the perfect complement to our classic taste. We wanted to host a celebration that would create a memorable day for our friends and family from start to finish. Every moment of our wedding day was spent at Park Winters.

Park Winters is one of the most incredible venues imaginable for a wedding. The venue offers many different areas that are special in their own way. From the magnificent pool, to the rustic Koi pond, to the sprawling landscape of lush green, to the event barn there is little about the estate that leaves a person wanting. On our special day, they included a personal chef for morning breakfast and brunch; open use of the Victorian Mansion for hair and make-up, individual rooms for our bridal party to stay, tables and chairs, and all of the appropriate lighting.

As an employee of La Tavola Fine Linen Company and weekend freelance wedding planners assistant, I had a vision from the outset of a classic, romantic, and timeless looking wedding. With Lee’s input, we decided on ivory and gold with pops of fuchsia and true greens as our wedding colors. For the cocktail hour, we had a little bit of bling with brass sequin linens. And, for the reception, we went with different patterns of ivory linens to provide texture while keeping it simple and elegant. It was important to us that our main tables (head, welcome, and cake) stood out during the reception. At the head table, we had a tulle skirt with gorgeous overlays, mixed chairs, and the most beautiful floral runner put together by Dixon Florist. Speaking of flowers, we could not have been more impressed by the flower arrangements for the wedding. They were all absolutely stunning.

The caterer for the reception was never a question. We always knew that we were going to have Buckhorn Catering for our reception. The owners, John and Melanie Pickerel, are very close family friends. Lucky for us, their food service is better than any we could have possibly hoped for. All of our guests loved the hors d’oeuvres during cocktail hour, as well as the steak, salmon, salad, and vegetables at the reception. At the last second, my mom had the genius idea of a churros stand from El Pueblo Meat Market. They were a hit! And, we’d recommend it to anyone as a simple, unexpected handheld desert. It was important to us that the wines come from Berryessa Gap and Turkovich Family Wines, also local to Winters, and both wine makers are close family friends. Napa gets a lot of attention for their wines but the wines being made 30 miles east of there are damn good too!

The rumors are true that your wedding day is a blur. The best decision that we made was hiring Jessica Burke as our photographer. As you can see in these pictures, she captured the day in a style and feel that we could never have even dreamed of. On top of that, it felt like we had a close friend handling it for us. She was so calm, compassionate, and efficient. We never had a question about how the photos were going to come out, and they were even better than we could have ever imagined. Our videographer, Andrew Wu from MSV, was the perfect complement to Jessica. He seemed to blend in perfectly. We hardly noticed that he was there yet he caught every moment that we could have possibly asked for. His video has caused about as many happy tears as Hallmark!

Everything on our wedding day was meticulously reviewed and coordinated by our wedding planner, Whitney Werts, who did an amazing job. Having our planner at an arms-reach throughout the day was calming and invaluable. As is with most weddings, we fully expected there to be unforeseen moments that took away from the celebration, but were pleasantly surprised. This would not have been possible without Whitney’s support.

As we look back on our wedding day we are so proud of all the “little things” that our friends and family did to make the event so very special. We can’t thank them enough for being so inspirational, loving, and dedicated to our special day during our engagement and our wedding day. It truly was the best day of our lives!