A Ranch Wedding that Blends Rustic with Sweet Personalized Touches

Blending rustic details with the prettiest pastel color palette, this San Diego ranch wedding coordinated by Bliss Events is not only gorgeous but chock full of personal touches. From a “first look touch” before the ceremony to an adorable balloon ritual, there are so many moments captured by Aga Jones that truly pull at the heart strings. Get lost in all the beauty right here.


From the Bride… Danny and I met over 7 years ago in a local Ann Arbor bar when I was studying business at the University of Michigan and he was coaching youth club soccer. After just coming back from studying in Paris for the summer and deciding that I had a definite preference for European men over American college boys, I was in luck – Danny was English and still had his adorable accent! We lived in Ann Arbor for several years together and just before moving out west to sunny San Diego, he proposed mid-mountain while on a ski holiday in Breckenridge, CO. It was the most romantic setting in the midst of doing something together that we both loved.

We settled on having the wedding in our new home of San Diego since we eventually wanted everyone to visit. Since our guests would be traveling from 9 different states and as far as England, Danny and I wanted to make it a special, memorable weekend that made it worth their journey here. We wanted a venue where we could have the ceremony and reception outside and house all of our guests onsite in our own private space to take advantage of our time together – all of which led us to The Ranch at Bandy Canyon. The weekend could not have been more perfect with (almost) everyone we loved in one place and many special personal touches that reflected our personalities and relationship.

The personal touches Danny and I incorporated started with an intimate ‘first touch’ rather than ‘first look’ where we exchanged handwritten love letters from opposite sides of a door. We both love live music so we had a singer songwriter (who could also DJ!) play the guitar and sing some of our favorite songs during the ceremony and cocktail hour and then DJ at the reception. One of our favorite parts of the evening was when he pulled out his guitar again to play a few live songs for our first dance as well as spontaneously for the last song of the evening. During the ceremony itself we did a unique balloon ritual where our bridal party, parents, and grandparents wrote one word describing each of us on a small piece of paper. The officiant then read them off during her reading, after which Danny and I tied them (along with secret messages we wrote for one another’s eyes only) to two large balloons and released them. After processing out of the ceremony we spotted the balloons way up in the sky and they were still close to one another, which we took as a good sign of things to come. For the reception we did ‘sip and search’ champagne glass escort cards where each guest picked up a glass of champagne with their name and the outline of a state or country on it, which matched table numbers that had the state or country outlines instead of actual numbers. The idea was for them to sip their champagne while they searched for their table and along the way read at each table why that place was significant to us. Everyone enjoyed this unique and personal twist. The best men also surprised us with their own personal touch during their speech, which was a handmade scrapbook of Danny’s memories from grade school through the present.

Our intimate group of approximately sixty guests dined on sea bass, short ribs or a mushroom risotto and sipped on the signature Blueberry Vodka Soda and Moscow Mule cocktails. We danced our first dance to a live version of One Republic’s Something I Need and welcomed our guests onto the dance floor to dance the night away under the stars. It was an intimate and magical evening for all the guests that traveled the world to celebrate our love.

Photography: Aga Jones Photography | Coordination: Bliss Events | Florist: Bespoke Custom Floral and Event Design | Cake: Cute Cakes | Hair and Makeup: Beauty By Stacey | Rentals: Love Notes Stationery | WEdding : The Ranch At Bandy Canyon