Bride: Lelia Woodley, 26 – Portfolio Strategist
Groom: Patrick Coggins, 28 – Logistics Coordinator
Date: August 19, 2012
Location: V3 Ranch, Breckenridge
Lelia and Patrick’s wedding won me over with beautiful mountain details. A lot of these elements were DIY and many yet were through the help of a friend and planner. The overall effect is effortless class and a modern rustic vibe. Better yet, you get a twofer because their rehearsal dinner was so beautiful that those photos made their way to me as well (at the end of the post). Can you imagine essentially having two gorgeous receptions? I’m dead jealous here. And then to cap off all the awesome, further research into their venue has me lusting over their location as well! AND they have a cute engagement story? Get out of here!
Editorial Note: V3 Ranch in Breckenridge is an incredible gem that I had no idea existed until I started writing this post. Part of a group of privately owned villas (cabins) that are rented out by Paragon Lodging, it has everything one would need for a wedding. A private mountain view? Check. A gourmet kitchen for your caterer? Check. Lodging for the wedding party? You betcha! I could go on and on but seriously, check out their site. There are other locations in their collective that also offer weddings with different pricing sizes, pricing, and amenities. Now I’m super jealous we didn’t go this route because it looks incredible (that woodwork, the view, that entryway chandelier!) and it seems to be as affordable as our choice because of how much we paid for family lodging. Can you imagine having your space available to decorate for days in advance if you wanted because you rented the cabin? Jealous! Just incredible!
Our house was built in the 1950′s with the mail slot opening inside the house. Everyday when I get home from work I always check the mail, so when I opened up the slot I found a small wrapped box addressed Lelia. I turned and asked Pat who it was from and he acted like he didn’t know, once I opened it and saw it was a ring he was on one knee and asked me to marry him. – Lelia
The Best Part:
Venue: Aloft at V3 Ranch | Photography: Taylor Rae Photography | Event Coordinators: Lindsey Shanks, A Charleston Bride (South Carolina) and All Events & Catering | Bridal Gown: Pronovias | Shoes: Seychelles | Bridesmaid Dresses: Dessy | Hair and Makeup: Jessie Montgomery (Friend) | Groom(smen) Attire: Banana Republic | Rings: Diamond Brokers of Memphis | Cake: Monica Seward (Cousin) | Catering: All Events & Catering | Rentals: Colorado Tents and Events | DJ: Hampton Entertainment
The favorite part of the wedding was having family and friends travel from all over and celebrate our union over 3 days filled with wedding events, from welcome drinks and appetizers, continued the next day for full seating of guests at rehearsal dinner and then concluding with the wedding and reception Sunday. We are truly blessed to have such wonderful people in our lives making the wedding experience special. – Lelia
And now for those rehearsal dinner pictures I promised. They used a fishing theme with their place cards and table names. The fish names were on chalkboard bottles. They kept the rustic and earth toned going (or I guess rather started it off) with grey tables, simple flowers, and antlers. A lot of style at this wedding!
I think it’s been made clear by me in the past that peplum dresses aren’t high on my list for fashion choices in wedding dresses. But if you need three very good reasons not to wear this look, I have them for you today! Despite the fact that anyone above the age of 8 should not wear a tutu/skirt sewn to another outfit, it’s not always flattering from the back or the front. Too much of a mini-bustle in the back looks like Donald Duck shaking a tail feather (you have to picture the model with that duck swagger too). But the worst is actually the first thought I had while looking through Spring 2014′s wedding gowns with peplum: evoking the lady parts. I saw these hilarious fabric vulvae used as teaching aides on TV shows before. It’s not something you can unsee or forget so of course, it came to mind while looking at this ruffled-front masterpiece. It’s the Georgia O’Keeffe painting of wedding dresses! What do you guys think of peplum? Does it serve a purpose outside of making me snicker like a middle schooler?
Today’s Italian inspired wedding styled shoot was created with the venue in mind. Baldoria on the Water is a pretty new venue in Lakewood. The space was designed to reflect Northern Italy with tons of stonework, warm colors, and iron balustrades. I’ve been there personally for Wedding Wars and was blown away that it is literally in the middle of everything but doesn’t feel like it at all when you’re inside or at the outdoor venue space. It’s actually kind of uncanny and totally perfect for those couples who want the convenience of getting married close to the city while feeling like they are in the Italian countryside. It also has a ton of versatility in terms of how to use the space for different sized parties.
In keeping with that Italian feeling, a group of talented vendors conspired to have a Renaissance-infused Italian wedding styled shoot at the Baldoria. Tablescapes by Design created a warm, inviting, and opulent decor that pairs well with mood of the venue. Three things in particular really jump out at me that are probably atypical things to focus on (I’m a weirdo about details but bear with me). First would be the layering of fabrics on the dress. I’m drawn to the closeup of the sash because the fabric that makes up the main portion of the dress has tiny, beautiful detail that could easily be missed in a wide shot. The addition of layers of other interesting fabrics and crocheted lace is great. This gown is actually the same design as that worn by the designer, Maggie Evans, herself on her wedding day and it has the added awesomeness of being a two-piece convertible dress (detachable bottom ruffles baby). Secondly would be how flawless and silky the layers on the cake are. Typically where fondant meets in layers it can be messy or have gaps. It’s so seamless that it looks like a piece of satin was draped over it. Lastly, would you check out the killer lighting behind the tables! Warm and fiery. It’s an oft-forgotten element that lighting! So I’ll let you look for those little details while you enjoy the overall vision.
Venue: Baldoria on the Water | Photography: Rayna McGinnis Photography | Event Design: Tablescapes by Design | Model: Meghan Gutteron of MAG Events | Bridal Gown: Maggie Evans Designs | Hair: Catherinehair | Makeup: MENTE Freelance | Floral Design: Fleur Decor | Stationery: Cloud 9 Weddings and Paper | Cake: Leaf and Crumb | Lighting: Skyline Productions | Refreshments: New World Coffee Catering Company
The Eclectic Wedding Showcase is the premier wedding show in Colorado because it’s so much more than just wedding stuff. You can absolutely attend just to have the time of your life because it’s a party! In 2013, a ticket to the event got you incredible event vignettes, ice cream made on site with liquid nitrogen, a very realistic looking Batman (holding cupcakes…who could ask for anything more?), booze, ladies wearing body paint and not much else, incredible painted on tattoos for guests, flowers springing from an engine block, jugglers, burlesque dancers, a crazy ass fashion show, music, and more! It is an EVENT! And even if these concepts aren’t your style to embrace fully for your wedding, it’s really great to meet vendors who are capable of rising to any occasion and prove it big time at the showcase. And at very minimum you get one hell of a show!
So clearly I’m stoked to announce that planning is already underway for The Eclectic Wedding Showcase 2014. Vendor space on the teams is already filling up super fast! If you are a vendor and interested in participating in a team or otherwise showing your goods at the show, head on over to the event page and make haste or you’ll lose out. This years vignette themes include:
1. Circus Sideshow
2. A Midsummer Night’s Dream
3. The Future of Us
5. The Dark Side of Sleeping Beauty
6. Apocalyptic Steampunk
If you want to participate, learn more, or buy tickets, head to the event page.
Still not convinced? Check out these images from last year’s Eclectic Wedding Showcase. The themes were Victorian Gothic, Comic Book Super Hero, Industrial Elegance, Pinup Rockabilly, and Hallowedding. These images are brought to you buy Jeff and Jewels Photography, the very same crazy couple that coordinated the showcase. If you want an in-depth look at the “Industrial Elegance” vignette, check out my post about it here. For even more photos of the whole event, check out Tablescapes by Design’s Pinterest page.
What I love about styled shoots is that they allow wedding vendors so much room for expressing their creativity. We get the chance to see them express their art in their own ways. And they pick unique themes that an average bride would probably not request so that we get excited about something out of box. Today’s styled shoot is a Phantom of the Opera Wedding by a talented group of local vendors. Heading up the collective was Joyce Goeppinger of La Vie Le Gage Events Planing. In addition to having a flair for planning, she’s quite the writer as well. Here is her account of the lovely collaboration:
Venue: Stanley Hotel | Photography: Nicole Marcelli Photography | Event Design: La Vie Le Gage Couture Events Wedding Planning | Floral Design: Flowers Forever Design | Cake: Kelley Kakes | Paper Suite: Bella Figura | Calligraphy: Bedsidesign | Gowns: Blushing Bride | Jewelry: Kristin Hayes | Masquerade Masks: Petal And Thorn | Hair & Make-Up: Samantha Koch Beauty, Logan Ellis-Gillette, Cha Cha Romero | Sounds Of The Rockies | Sofa: Vintage Rentals Denver | Napkins: Izy And Oly | Napkins Rings: The Owl And The Firefly
A Phantom of the Opera Styled Shoot has always been in my mind. The opportunity to usher this theme toward bridal really inspired me. The challenge was designing a dark mood production into a bridal concept. I intentionally chose the direction of MYSTERY! The color black was never a main character in my design; gray was the perfect color choice to bring a lighter feel and a modern touch to a period drama. Visualizing the color palette of garnet red, tones of gray, soft white, a dash of black by incorporating baroque chargers, which then led to conceiving a dramatic cake tower commanding a strong role in this Phantom shoot! Uniting the color palette by utilizing the invitation’s cut-out pattern done in red on the cake’s gray middle tier definitely distinguished this detail. The Phantom mask topping the cake evoked romance embracing the velvet red rose. Magnificent!
A Phantom of the Opera theme, led me to Colorado’s own Estes Park historic Stanley Hotel. The Georgian architecture was perfect. Ball gowns, candelabras, gloves, and masquerade masks guided me into developing, creating and capturing the drama that the Phantom era induces.
My full intent was to turn the Music Room at the Stanley Hotel into a ballroom encompassed by swirling smoke moving along the floor, aiding the masks in the element of mystery. A grand atmosphere was achieved adding the right touch of elegance by having gorgeous place settings set upon shimmering linens with a swirling pattern, which brought movement even to the table. A gorgeous period piece of furniture in red brought full drama. Heart frames lying on top of the place settings with cuffed adorned napkins, performing the role of cupid’s arrow brilliantly placed through the DIY painted wood heart frames. Also, a DIY project of small wood hearts covered in music note fabric connected the Phantom theme once more and gently relayed a masculine touch of detail. – Joyce
The Ice Castles are becoming a staple in Colorado for beautiful backdrops. I’ve covered these man-made marvels before in the Photo Ops Project with some great examples in the past. In the handful of years that they have been in Colorado (moving every year), the Ice Castles have inspired photographers, videographers, musicians, and artists in incredible ways. In the wedding industry alone I have seen a stunning variety of unique takes on the same space. It doesn’t hurt that it changes and grows constantly.
Typically shoots draw from the architecture of the structure and often feel a little chilly. When I received this Ice Castles Bridal Shoot I was pleased with how the bright colors on the couple and their vibrant personality seem to really pop off the background. I’m a huge fan of contrasting colors and I see a running theme of it in the beautiful work of Green Blossom Photography. Anna and Mateo, the bride and groom, are so snugly and their rosy cheeks bring a smile to my face. The mittens really make the look feel informal and fun and her bouquet is simply gorgeous. The bridal gown does not disappear into the blue and white of the ice because of the texture of the bodice, the blush hue of the skirt, the bold colors of the accessories, and the incredible makeup on the on Anna. Mateo’s dapper outfit and warm complexion similarly bring warmth and life. So enjoy a little snuggle time:
Photography: Green Blossom Photography | Dress: Maggie Sottero via The Bridal Collection | Makeup: MENTE Freelance | Floral Design: Painted Primrose
Bride: Jenna Flanders, 22 – Buena Vista Roastery
Groom: Jake Gonsalves, 22 – Younglife Frontier Ranch
Date: February 23, 2014
Location: The Inn at Hudson Gardens, Littleton
I make a point to feature all sorts of couples on A Colorado Courtship. This state is full of great ideas and beautiful stories waiting to be told. But if I were to pick a “type” of personal preference, Jenna and Jake would be it. Their Hudson Gardens wedding has the right mix of great vendors and DIY, is overflowing with personal details that have great meaning to them as a couple, and exudes personal style. Jenna said the goal was to be “1940′s Colorado meets Hawaii”. I think they created a really fun theme that reflects them as a couple and doesn’t scream “theme”. The photography is impeccable and even the groom’s coverage made me stop and take notice. (No seriously, is this not the sexist groom photography ever? Our brides are always glowing but rarely do the grooms make such an appearance.) Nothing feels cookie cutter about this couple and they are simply beautiful together!
Jake and I met working on a ropes course at Frontier Ranch [in Buena Vista]. He being from the middle of the Pacific Ocean and me being from the middle of the continental United States it was really quite surreal. We then were long distance while he was doing an internship in the mountains and I was finishing school in Greeley. We visited his family in Kauai in September and that is when we realized this was going to be a forever thing. Living far apart was no longer an option for us so when Jake took a job at Frontier Ranch where we met and fell in love, I had to go to.
Jake is an old fashioned romantic so he wanted to ask my dad for my hand in person. When you live a three hour drive away from my parents it is quite hard to sneak away in secret to ask. So we drove down and Jake asked when we were there. Jake was very good a misleading me think he would ask at a different point, so the timing was a complete surprise. We found ourselves on my favorite path, at the first place I took him when I first brought him home, at sunset when he popped the question. – Jenna
- The bride’s MOH has been her friend since 3 years old. Jenna was the MOH at her wedding the night before Jake proposed. =)
- The bride’s dress cost just $300 from a used bridal gown store! She cut it down to the the length that you see.
- Jenna made all the hairpieces for the bridal party.
- Jenna’s hairpiece was made by a friend who is opening up a shop soon in their hometown of Buena Vista. Her “something borrowed” was an heirloom strand of pearls from the same wonderful friend.
- The bride’s “something old” was a pearl in her bouquet that was her father’s first gift to her mother. <3
- Jenna’s ring was made from her grandmother’s diamond.
- Jake is from Hawaii and included elements of the islands in their wedding. His ring is made of Koa wood which is native only to Hawaii, his clothing was by a Hawaiian designer, and the men wore leis brought in from Hawaii by his parents.
- Dinner consisted of Mexican food. Olé!
- Jenna’s mother made the floral arrangements out of dried and wooden flowers.
- The wedding had two officiants!
- None of the centerpieces matched, but rather had repeating elements of orange. The burlap on the tables is from Buena Vista Roastery coffee bags.
- Jake’s tie was made by Krochet Kids, an organization that puts impoverished women to work designing their own homemade goods. How cool is that? What a kick ass couple!
The Best Part:
Venue: The Inn at Hudson Gardens | Photography: CMP Studios | Bridal Gown: The Green Bride | Shoes: Modcloth | Hairpiece: Chris Yinger | Hair: Emily Yinger | Makeup: Nicole Ramirez, Pretty Bride Shop | Groom’s Attire: Reyn Spooner | Bow Tie: Krochet Kids | Groomsmen Attire: American Apparel | Groom’s Ring: Na Hoku Jewelers, Cherry Creek | Cake: Azucar Bakery | Catering: Taco Mojo
My favorite part of the wedding was the live Jazz band! Peplin Jazz band was AMAZING and was so fun. Jake and I danced every week together when we met a Frontier so dancing is a huge part of our relationship and my family culture. – Jenna
Bride: Andra Ewald, 33 – Nurse
Groom: Jeff Gerlesits, 32 – Veterinarian
Date: May 5, 2012
Location: Christ the King, Evergreen (Ceremony) and Mount Vernon Country Club, Golden (Reception)
Jeff and Andra’s western themed Mount Vernon Country Club wedding was inspired heavily by two things: Style Me Pretty and a major emphasis on creating a killer party for their guests. Nothing wrong with that! The party started with a pimped out school bus and didn’t stop until they ran out of reception. This fun loving couple was brought together by their dogs. Look for the culprit canines in the getting ready images:
We lived in the same apartment building and would take our dogs out the same time every morning before work and would say good morning. We would also get home from work the same time every night and take our dogs out and chat about our days and say good night. This went on for a couple months before Jeff asked me if I would like to get dinner with him and talk somewhere besides the grass in front of our building. We got engaged during a night skiing trip to Keystone. – Andra
- Below you will see the officially witnessed declaration by a grade school aged Jeff that he would never marry a girl because they are “stupid and dumb.” Good thing they didn’t wager on it because he kinda caved 25 years later. Everyone should do this for their children. Parenting…win!
- Guests were asked to bring a square of fabric for a quilt.
- Their Tres Leche cake was made by The Market on Larimer Square. If you’ve never been there, you must go there. Had no clue they did catering of any kind. Yum.
- “My sister, Jeff, and I spent countless hours making pew cones, buntings, table runner, and desserts. I made a daily ritual of searching [Style Me Pretty] for ideas and inspiration.
- The groom cut down dead trees from their back yard and sliced them into sections for table numbers. Andra then wood-burned the table numbers into them.
- Hundreds of pine cones were collected by friends and family for decorations and the place card holders.
- “I got more compliments on our flowers than any other aspect of the wedding,” said Andra. She loved working with Sweet Pea Flowers and adored her bouquet.
- The band, HomeSlice, learned their first dance song (“Crazy Girl” by Eli Young Band) and played their own rendition for the couple.
- What does a bride wear under cowboy boots? Pug puppy socks of course! ;) Love that detail.
The Best Part:
Venue: Mount Vernon Country Club | Photography: Kelly Lemon Photography | Bridal Gown: Little White Dress | Hair and Makeup: Salon Posh | Groom(smen) Attire: Macy’s | Rings: Tipton Jewelers | Cake: The Market | Floral Design: Sweet Pea Flowers | DJ: Angelo Austin (Friend) | Band: HomeSlice | Transportation: Pimped Out Bus of Denver | Invitations: Wordshop Paperie
My favorite part of the wedding (besides walking down the aisle to Jeff) was the band! I have never been at a wedding where the entire wedding was on the dance floor for most of the night! They were awesome!! I loved dancing with everyone I love in the world and my new husband. – Andra
I currently live in Denver but I think my heart still belongs in Fort Collins. Just seeing this engagement session with Tenney Alley conjured great memories of heading to the Rio for my husbands 21st birthday dinner (when he was still years away from being my husband). The town has so much character, at least one of everything you want, and feels so safe. In what other big college town could pianos be strategically placed outdoors with such great results? Not only are they played by passers-by, they are not defaced and even protected from the weather by the locals. The pianos clearly aren’t the major focus of this particular shoot, but it gives me a great opportunity to introduce you to the project and a few really cool places in FoCo:
Pianos About Town is a collaborative project among Bohemian Foundation, the Downtown Development Authority’s Art in Action Program, and the City of Fort Collins’ Art in Public Places Program. The project involves local artists painting murals on pianos at the Art in Action Stage in Old Town Square where the public can watch the creative process and interact with the artists. Pianos About Town is intended to be a fun, interactive art installation that creates an additional element of whimsy and surprise to Fort Collins. These colorfully-painted pianos are then rotated about town for the public to enjoy as both musical instruments and works of art. - http://www.bohemianfoundation.org/
This Fort Collins engagement session hits two of the Pianos About Town locations (Tenney Alley and Jazz Alley) as well as The Bean Cycle coffeehouse. Lindsey and Clint, the couple at the center of it are just adorable as they wander the locations and canoodle. The first alley you see is Tenney Alley. In the warmer months there are flowers hanging on the walls of this European feeling walkway. The second alley is Jazz Alley, another contribution by the Bohemian Foundation. It has a huge mural of a jazz hall and its patrons (made of up famous people from around the world and even some local Fort Collins celebrities). The panels of the mural are painted on aluminum, which gives them the reflective quality you can see in the photos. (To see the mural in full and learn more about the people in it, click here.) A big thank you to Studio Amy Luna for this submission!
The Bean Cycle - 144 N College Ave, Fort Collins, CO 80524
Tenney Alley – Runs between 126 and 136 W. Mountain Ave.
Jazz Alley – Between the Food Co Op (250 E Mountain Ave, Fort Collins, CO) and the historical Mitchell Block
Please note: The pianos will keep moving but when I asked their Facebook Page, they gladly pointed me in the right direction.
Bride: Dana Bouchard, 28 – Government Employee
Groom: Stanley Polley, 30 – Science Teacher
Date: May 25, 2013
Location: The Manor House, Littleton
Today’s Manor House wedding is really fun. Dana and Stanley made some unusual choices that set their day apart from others I have seen. And we know I always love the unique and inspiring. They even ended their ceremony with a toast led by the bride and groom themselves! This bright and colorful wedding will have you longing for spring in the Rocky Mountains. Speaking of which, how incredible are those views? Manor House weddings are always so beautiful. It’s hard to believe the venue is right near Denver because it feels like Estes Park. As the bride herself said, “As you can tell from the photos, it was a perfect showcase of Colorado’s beauty.” I agree!
We met through the not seemingly romantic but surprisingly effective way of the internet Our first date was perfect; we talked for hours and had our first kiss in the snow. We were engaged 6 months later. – Dana
- The couples rings have each other’s fingerprints engraved inside the bands.
- For Dana and Stanley, it was very important to have a really personal and secular ceremony. Dana’s brother performed the ceremony and the couple exchanged their own vows. They wrote the ceremony together to make it personal to them.
- At the end of the ceremony, the couple led their guests in a toast! Dana’s dad made the shot-holder and the yummy mint juleps inside the test tubes.
- The couple’s dog was their ring bearer and they made her a matching leash and collar.
- The bride’s mom made out of town bags and part of the centerpieces.
- Music is very important to the couple so they included it in many ways, including the music notes you will see on the cake table pedestals and the centerpiece candle holders. Also, I love the guitar case card box.
The Best Part:
One of my favorite wedding memories is our honeymoon. We bought concert tickets for 6 shows over the summer at Red Rocks, one of the shows was an artist whose song we played during our ceremony and another artist we danced our first dance to. It was pretty incredible to see them live right after the wedding. – Dana
What a great idea!
Venue: The Manor House | Photographer: Trystan Photography | Groom(smen) Attire: Men’s Wearhouse | Rings: Brent & Jess | Cake: The Bundt Shoppe | Catering: The Manor House | Floral Design: Gardenhouse | Invitations: The Print Cafe | Photo Booth: Memories Photo Booth