Friday, May 04, 2007
and the rain wins...
In my three years of wedding planning, I have never had a wedding rained out. I have had plenty scares. For an outdoor Laguna Beach wedding last October, it rained up until 30 minutes before the invite time, only to stop, opening up to sunny blue skies for the ceremony. (We stashed away the 40 umbrellas we had bought at Target that morning!) I always suggest having a back-up plan for outdoor weddings when there is even a slight chance it may rain. However, none of my brides have actually had to use them.
Because I have had such great luck with this, I guess I became a bit cocky about it. When talking to Jess, my April 21st bride, I quickly tried to ease her fears about the forecast by telling her about my track record with the rain- none of my weddings had been rained out. Well, I guess the rain got mad at me for my comments and decided to fight back.
Jess & Brian (our amazing graphic & web designer) had planned a beautiful wedding at a rustic winery up near Sacramento. The grounds of the vineyard were incredible- there was a creek, a huge beautiful oak tree framing the ceremony area, lots of gorgeous flowers & plants, and birds chirping. It was the perfect ceremony site. Until the clouds rolled in. It was not supposed to start raining until 8:00 that evening, so we planned on keeping the ceremony outside and moving the party inside the big barn just in time to escape the rain. The sky had other plans. It started raining at 2:00 while we were setting up and it never stopped. The whole time I was waiting for a miraculous parting of the skies, beaming down sunshine, but it never came. Luckily, we did have a back-up plan. Sort of.
The reception was to be held in an awesome rustic barn. With 225 guests, there was only just enough room for the tables, dance floor & food stations. With no choice left, we packed the 225 guests into one side of the barn and had them crowd around the dance floor area, which became an impromptu alter. We set up seats for the family in the front and dressed up the area a bit with candles and hydrangeas. It ended up being a very memorable and romantic ceremony. The sides of the barn were open, so we could see & hear the rain while staying dry inside. The intimacy and closeness of the space transferred into the very personal and fun ceremony. It was beautiful. And, in the end, they got married. That's what matters!
Jess & Brian are amazing people and I could not be happier for them! It was a blast to be a part of their wedding weekend, including a fun sangria party the night before (none for me & my baby though!). Thanks for bringing us up & we hope & pray that your marriage is an incredible and beautiful thing.
Here are some fun pics from the wedding. Some were taken by the Bride's cousin, John and others were taken off of a friend's myspace page :)
The beautiful bride in front of our make-shift altar. The barn had these amazing vineyard branches on the wall, so we decided to make that the centerpiece for the ceremony. Add some hydrangeas and wa-la!
The communion wine barrel. The flowers in the back were also the centerpieces for all of the tables. Jess ordered the tulips wholesale and that morning, I put them into mason jars. This is a super cute & affordable centerpiece idea. Mason jars are great- they have a lot of character & fit well with a rustic, vintage, or winery wedding. Add a bit of ribbon in the color of your wedding and you've got a cute arrangement for dollars.
The bride & her parents squeezing through the "aisle". It was nice and cozy!
The bride & groom share a laugh during the ceremony. A little planning note: Brian selected all of the music played throughout the entire wedding himself. It was fun & personal and reflected their style. He organized all of the music into playlists in his itunes folder and had a trusted friend man the computer all night. He also had another friend MC. This is a great way to get good music when on a budget. However- it is very important to do this right. Get a good sound system, have someone you trust running it (who know a lot about music & sound), have a good MC, and always have back-ups of your music in case something happens. It is also important to be very meticulous in picking your songs and setting them up. Music can make or break the flow of a reception. With all of Brian's planning & expertise, the night went smoothly without a hitch. Guests wanted to keep dancing well after the bride & groom had left the reception.
The bridal party braves the rain!
A sweet moment before the reception. Aren't they a cute couple? Also, notice the fun lanterns hung all over the barn. We found these lanterns a year ago and Jess knew she had to have them. They matched their wedding color perfectly and added a really fun touch to the rustic barn.
The bridesmaids & groomsmen wait to enter the reception during the grand entrance. The girl's bouquets were simple clutches of tulips & the bride's bouquet was a mix of hydrangeas and tulips. They were simple & beautiful!
How cute is this little cake? In addition to the cake, the bride & her bridesmaids made cupcakes for the guests and the bride's grandmother baked up some delicious cookies.
A big thank you to all of their vendors:
Wilson Vineyards- Sandy, the site coordinator, was great! She also reminds me of Martha Stewart a bit :)
Randy Peters Catering