Inspiration behind the day From The Bride
Greg and I are avid snowboarders and although we both grew up in Southern California, we have a love for the winter season and all of the comforts it brings. When it came to setting a theme for our wedding, the idea of a relaxed, rustic yet romantic winter-themed affair with lots of unique elements really fit our personalities. We searched high and low for a venue that was vintage and rustic yet different (even quirky) but finding a spot that had an indoor ceremony and reception space and lodge-type feel proved more of a challenge than anticipated. On a whim, we headed out to a historic lemon ranch set in Santa Paula, California and the rest was history – our “Winter Day at the Lemon Ranch” theme came to life with inspiration from every corner of the ranch – from our charcoal, frosty yellow and ivory color scheme to our vintage/rustic centerpieces and décor.
Our wedding was a true labor of love which started as a vision and was pulled together with the help of our amazing family, friends and vendors. It was a very DIY affair with centerpieces created with milk bottles, mason jars and other miscellaneous containers, pewter pieces, lace and dollies collected from antique stores and garage sales; burlap runners and candy bags hand sewn by my mother; bridesmaid necklaces designed by Greg’s aunt; lemonade stand turned candy table (also the highlight of our engagement shoot) and chalkboard signs built by Greg himself and print pieces crafted by myself, including the programs and wishing tree guides for the table settings.
We set out to create a day filled with love and celebration but also a day that our guests would enjoy and remember. The day turned out to be more than Greg and I could have ever imagined, with only one small hitch - a last minute wind storm that halted our outdoor activities planned for cocktail hour – bocce ball, games and tethered air balloon rides for guests. But with a quick ceremony switch, we made “lemons into lemonade” with bites and sips enjoyed indoors by the four sided fireplace.
Processional- Parents (Hallelujah/ The Vitamin String Quartet), Bridal Party (Wonderful Tonight/The Vitamin String Quartet), Bride (Christmas Canon). Recessional: Good Life by One Republic. First Dance: I Will Follow You Into the Dark by Death Cab for Cuties
Favorite memory of the day:
There was nothing like the feeling of heading to the ceremony and watching each of my bridesmaids exit the trolley. Standing by myself for one last moment, than taking my dads hand and heading into the hall towards Greg. It was also truly amazing to see everything I had envisioned leading up to the wedding day come to life and to see our guests really enjoying themselves and their surroundings.
Advice you have for brides planning now:
Don’t Be Afraid to Dream – That unique venue you’ve dreamt about or your dream photographer that actually fits within your budget does exist, it just might take a bit more effort to find them. Greg and I are very lucky to have worked with so many amazing vendors, a number of which were small, or just starting out. They shared such a passion for what they do and the vision that we had for the day. It took some extra research but we found the perfect vendors who fit our budget and our style and we couldn’t be happier.
Make Your Wedding Your Own – Your wedding is about you and your style, don’t be afraid to go outside the box. Sometimes you can get swamped down with so many great ideas and inspirations – make an inspiration board of your must have ideas and get crafting (the more time you have, the better)! Creating your own décor and props can help save on your budget too!
Don’t Stress the Weather – There is one thing you can’t control the day of your wedding – the weather. I had a daily alert the week leading up to the big day that showed everything from rain to sun to rain and than we had a wind storm. Try not to stress, just make sure you have a backup plan just in case the weather decides to go awry.