Summer Garden Wedding at Inn at Park Winters
April 21, 2015
RusticVintageHotels + Resorts Weddings
Two Northern California farming families results in one gorgeous garden wedding, complete with peaches, apricots and more perfect produce adding a whimsical, rustic vibe. As a major fan of the French blue stripe, this wedding is already a winner in my eyes but with the beautiful Bride's story, these blooms captured by Amy Jensen, and film by Kevin Thome, this is my new happy place.
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From The Bride... My husband and I are both products of Northern California farming families. My grandfather grew peaches and my husband’s grandfather grows apricots. We wanted to create a wedding aesthetic that celebrated our mutual farm heritage and the joining of our two families in a subtle and graceful way.

Executing our perfect day was definitely a family affair, as we enlisted the help of some of our ridiculously talented family and friends to round out our team of vendors, including: our photographer and friend Amy Jensen; my chef brother Matthew Masera who made our dreamy cake; our cousin-by-marriage Kevin Thome, a talented film student who created our wedding video; my godsister Abigail Trent who styled my hair; and my mother Michelle Masera, a trained artist, who designed our custom monogram, drew up signs and a chalk menu board, and calligraphed the placecards.

As fate would have it, due to scheduling conflicts with our jobs, family vacations and the venue, we ended up being married on the first day of summer, which is, coincidentally, the start of peach and apricot harvest season, and my birthday.

We picked the Inn at Park Winters as our venue because it fit our vision perfectly. The Inn at Park Winters is an old and beautifully preserved Victorian home surrounded by lush, gorgeous gardens. Beyond the grounds, the Inn is completely surrounded by farmland as far as you can see. When my father first saw it, he said that he felt like he was back home, because it reminded him so much of where he grew up. We decided that was how we wanted all of our guests to feel – like they were home.

From the time the guest stepped onto the property until the moment they left, we wanted them to feel cherished, happy, and nourished with comfort food. As guests arrived at the wedding, they walked past the original road sign from my family’s peach orchard, and were welcomed with a cocktail.

We wanted our ceremony to be personal and intimate, and we wanted our guests to feel like they were a part of, and partly responsible for, a very private and special moment in our lives. To this end, we decided to be married in the early evening in the small garden at the front Park Winters on the steps of the Inn. I wore the same hat that my mother wore more than 30 years earlier when she married my dad. A friend officiated the ceremony and my husband and I exchanged vows that we had written for each other. Apparently, there wasn’t a dry eye in the house – particularly mine.

To create the vintage country garden aesthetic we were aiming for, we used a mix of blue and white ceramic vases and bowls (from secondhand and antique stores) and old apricot crates from my husband’s family farm in San Jose for many of the floral and fruit tablescapes and arrangements. We also used an assortment of long walnut farm tables lined with white and indigo French striped runners and round tables covered in indigo and navy floral print floor-length linens coupled with dark walnut chairs.

The escort cards were displayed on two large cork boards that my mom and I covered with print upholstery fabric and framed with reclaimed wood. The cards were attached to the board using silver upholstery tacks.

As a small token of our appreciation to our friends and family, we set a thank you note at each place setting, that was written by Matt and me and graphically designed by John Douglas, who also designed all of the signs (“Please Sign Our Guestbook,” etc.), tables numbers and ceremony programs. My mom and I worked with John to create a custom monogram for the signs, thank you notes and programs. For the monogram, my mom (an artist by training) hand drew a wreath that includes a peach flanked by two apricots and encompassed by olive branches and garden flowers. Inside of the wreath, John created an “R” for Rose, my new last name.

Our wonderfully talented florist Monica Lynn created tablescapes and arrangements using gorgeous locally grown peaches and apricots and a wide variety of flowers and greenery that looked as though they were picked fresh from the garden. I wanted the arrangements to look organic and natural, and not too uniform or neat. To this end, my bridal bouquet had long stems of varied lengths and loose greenery. My bouquet was tied with a blue and white striped ribbon (an ode to our antique blue and white ceramics and French-country linens) and finished with an old art deco period brooch, once belonging to my maternal grandmother, which echoed the look of my vintage deco engagement ring, and the beading on my gown.

The bridesmaids wore flower crowns instead of carrying bouquets which helped to unify their appearance as they each wore a dress of their own choosing that fell within a color palette consisting of rose, pink, peach and gold. I encouraged the bridesmaids to wear something fun – beaded, embroidered, brocade, metallic – and they ran with it.

My brother, Matthew Masera, is a well-known local chef who started his career working as a pastry chef. He created our wedding cake, using hundreds of handmade gumpaste petals. Inside the fondant exterior, was carrot cake, a family recipe, and the same recipe my mom makes every year for my birthday.

Some of the smaller details of the wedding represented our families and our life together. We had antique English bulldog paperweights holding down cocktail napkins at the bar to represent our bulldog Seven. At the guest book table, there were photos of our parents’ and grandparents’ weddings, as well as a picture of me at two years-old, wearing my mother’s wedding hat. Inside the main house, there was a portrait of me at the same age wearing the wedding hat that was drawn by my mom and has hung in my parents’ house for most of my life.

As day turned to night, the café lights strung in the trees above the lawn and the candles on the tables lit the reception with a romantic glow. During his welcome speech, my dad led our guests in a surprise rendition of “Happy Birthday” for me. As we ate, we heard hilarious and touching toasts from our fathers, best men and maids of honor. Later, after our first dance, my husband and I dedicated a song to our parents, and particularly my mom, the creative brain behind the wedding and my best friend, who is celebrating her 15th breast-cancer-free-year.

After the cake was cleared, there was a cookie bar for the guests. The cookies were made by a handful of family members who we asked to make their favorite recipes. For favors, we gave guests 4” peach and apricot pies, packed in craft paper boxes and wrapped with baker’s twine and displayed in old wooden apricot crates from Matt’s grandfather’s orchard.

After the last dance, a sparkler-lit farewell, and the last guest had left, my husband and I did what undoubtedly everyone had thought about that hot summer day… we jumped into the pool.

Photography: Amy Jensen Photography | Coordinator: Aubrey White, Alluring Events And Design | Florist: Monica Lynn, In Full Bloom By MJL | Videography: Kevin Thome Bridal Boutique: Miosa Couture | Bride's Earrings: Sukran Kirtis Jewelry | Bride's Hair: Abigail Trent | Bride's Hat: Family Heirloom | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids' Hair: Krystle Tanton, The Garage Hair And Skin Lounge | Catering: Buckhorn Catering | Entertainment: Kevin Issertell, Extreme Productions | Graphic Designer: John Douglas, Serenity Now Studio | Groom's Attire: J. Crew | Groom's Shoes: Cole Haan | Invitations: Smitten On Paper | Linens (except Table Runners): La Tavola | Makeup: Jill Briggs, Beauty Box Makeup Arts | Officiant: Chett Garcia | Rentals: Inn At Park Winters | Table Runners: Pottery Barn | Wedding Dress: Pronovias, Orel | Wedding Venue: Inn At Park Winters