After spending a few months planning a vintage/bohemian/farm-style wedding, Natalie found herself wishing they could just elope and was finally able to talk John into it. Their rustic bohemian wedding in Tennessee turned into a rustic bohemian elopement in Hawaii.
While you would typically think that a couple flying all the way to Hawaii to elope would do so in a beautiful ceremony on the beach, this is not your typical couple. Natalie and John were still dreaming of a farm wedding and found the perfect venue on their island getaway, Puakea Ranch, where they were able to tie the knot in a rustic setting in the near proximity to farm animals. With Brandon Chesbro behind the camera to capture every moment, this is one wedding that you seriously don’t want to miss! Make sure you see every gorgeous detail by visiting the full gallery here.
From the Bride:
We’d been planning a DIY, vintage with a touch of bohemian whimsy – style, farm wedding when I finally convinced John to elope instead. When we decided on Hawaii, I started searching for ranch and farm venues and stumbled upon the most magical place I’d ever seen… Puakea Ranch, a historic Cattle Ranch turned Bed and Breakfast with magnificent ocean views. It was perfect.
The minute we arrived at the ranch, we knew we’d made the right choice. We spent a few days exploring the Big Island, and wrapping up last minute details. Our ceremony was planned for Wednesday and by Tuesday the forecast was calling for all day rain. Since we wanted our photos to be incredible, we made the decision to do our First Look and Wedding Portraits on Tuesday.
I hurriedly put my bouquet and floral headpiece together, did my hair and make-up, and got my dress on with some help from head wrangler, Jana. John got ready while I did my Bridal Portraits and we met at the beautiful lava rock pool. That moment when we first saw each other was so special.
Of course, Wednesday ended up being a gorgeous day… not a drop of rain. But I’m glad we did our First Look and some of our photos the day before. It made for a very relaxing wedding day. John and I spent the morning at the beach and got ready together. Completely stress free! Our ceremony was beautiful… traditional with a touch of Hawaii with the blowing of the Conch Shell. We exchanged vows through our tears. It was wildly romantic.
If we had to change anything I think we’d both say we would have loved to have had family there on our big day. BUT at the same time, sharing that moment, just the two of us, was beyond special. One of my favorite things about our day was the intimacy of our ceremony.
I set up a styled picnic reception for our toast using props I’d collected and brought from Nashville. We finished our night off with dinner at Napua at Mauna Lani Beach Club and had our first dance under the stars by the tiki torches. Our day was a fairytale. Everything turned out better than we could have dreamed and Brandon captured it all beautifully.
What is a Hawaiian wedding without a few gorgeous photos of the coastline.
Photographer: Brandon Chesbro
Venue: Puakea Ranch
Dress Designer: Pronovias
Groom's Attire: J.Crew & Etsy
Jewelry: Custom & Gordan's Jewelers
Officiant: Kevin Eng
Flowers: No Ka Oi Protea
Event Designer, Makeup, Hair, Flowers & Veil or Hair Accessories: The Bride | Cupcakes: Local Grocer | Shoe Designer: Vintage Lucchese found at thrift store | Stationery: Friend of The Bride
Read on to see how much this rustic bohemian elopement in Hawaii cost. Please note that costs change as the years go by, and prices are subject to change. This is just one couple’s breakdown to give you a rough estimate on how much a wedding like this may cost you.
We limited our wedding budget to $15k (mainly because I think spending a fortune on ONE day is pure insanity) and eloping meant we were able to have a dream wedding AND honeymoon in Hawaii for two weeks for less than what we would have spent for a "real wedding." I'm so thankful for my Mom who didn't push me to have a big wedding. She even gave us the extra cash that we didn't spend on the wedding/accommodations so that we could have some fun on our honeymoon. She's pretty amazing!
The bulk of our budget was spent on flights and accommodations in Hawaii. Puakea Ranch was worth every dime! I think we'd move in there if we could. Cannot say enough good things about this incredible place!
One area I was willing to splurge was for a great Photographer. Brandon is incredible!! He was able to work within our budget, even when we changed plans and asked him to fly to Hawaii! And the photos he took really captured the magic of our day. He's the best in my book!
I did save in the following ways...
My Dress... I bought it off the rack at a sample sale for $800. It did need A LOT of alterations but I still ended up less than $1400 total. Not bad for a lace dress! My boots were a $13 thrift store score... I've had them for years.
Hair/Makeup... I did this myself so that saved a lot of money.
Styling... Most of the props I brought along for our picnic reception were decor items from our home. Anything I did purchase is now decor in our home:)
Flowers... I spent less than $150 and did them myself. I ordered a large box of assorted tropicals and used just the protea to make my bouquet. John helped me cut them (those suckers are thick!). The flowers in my crown did come from a local grocery store because the flowers I had shipped from a wholesaler on the mainland never arrived:(
Cake... I think we spent around $20 for cupcakes from a local grocery store.
Obviously we saved a TON of money too by not having any guests... no food or bar bill:)