Avid mountain climbers, Jeanye and BIll, got married amongst the Evergreens. The ceremony was simple, because you don't need much more to look at when you are sitting in a meadow, surrounded by Evergreens. There were especially unique details to this Yosemite Evergreen Lodge wedding. For one, the bride actually made the flower girls' dresses, and the girls seemed so proud to wear them. They carried fairy wands, and magically bounced through the forest. The reception was fitted with wildflowers, which the butterflies even enjoyed…and instead of cake, they dramatically topped the night off with an exciting flambé…the perfect final act for this rustic outdoor wedding, out in the elements.
Why a Mountain Wedding?
We love being up in the mountains– backpacking, hiking, skiing or rock climbing. The mountains are where we go to relax, laugh, have fun and enjoy. When we started wedding planning, we immediately thought of Tahoe and Yosemite, which are part of our ‘back yards'. We wanted to have our wedding in a place that we love and share it with our family and friends.
Where did you find your inspiration?
I wanted our wedding to fit in to the natural, beautiful surroundings, and to be comfortable and relaxed. When I was speaking with our florist, I told her I wanted to feel like we were walking in a meadow with wildflowers. Overall, I wanted the decor to be pretty and simple but festive enough for a wedding.
What were some personal details you incorporated?
We didn't have a wedding party but my two nieces and nephew walked down the aisle with us. I made dresses for my nieces and Bill's mom made little streamers and flags for them to carry.
Your favorite moment of the day
When the ceremony was over, Bill and I walked away from the ceremony down a path and it was only us (at least for a few minutes).
Three things you're glad you did.
- First and foremost, delegated and asked for help. We got lots of help from family and friends — from driving up wine to the site to preparing table cards and place settings to creating streamers for kids. It was so nice to have so many people contribute to our day.
- Hired a great photographer– I am camera shy and hate having my picture taken. When we got engaged we emailed Kelsey (Kelsey Crews Photography) right away to see if she could be our wedding photographer. We had met Kelsey while in Santa Barbara for a family vacation and she was so fun and comfortable to be with that I didn't even bother to shop around. I love looking at our wedding photos and album! She almost made it look better than I remember :).
- Hosted a wedding weekend, not just a day. The time will fly by and even a weekend seems too short!
Anything you wish you hadn't done?
Well, we actually sat down and ate dinner. I know many brides and grooms do not get to eat at their wedding but we did. That being said, I do wish we had circulated more during the dinner /dessert hour so that I could talk to more to our guests.
What was the best piece of wedding advice you got?
Earlier on, we received great advice from my sister in law to choose 1-3 things to focus on for our wedding since you can't focus on everything. We decided together what our priorities were for our wedding– we both chose food/wine and venue, and I chose flowers. Since food/wine and venue were important to both of us, we spent a few weekends together checking out venues, tasting food and trying out different wines. On the flowers and other details, I spent more time on my own and would just update Bill on what I was thinking. I think this worked well since Bill wasn't dragged into details he didn't care as much about and didn't get “wedding overload”. But the wedding turned out to reflect both of our visions, since we both decided and had input on things we each cared about.
What piece of wedding planing advice do you wish you followed?
I would have taken more time off during the week of the wedding. You only get married once and it is such a festive time to spend with family and friends.
Anything you wish you hadn't worried about?
I was worried that we would fall behind schedule so I kept an eye on the clock. I know why people hire a day of coordinator now.
How did you choose your vendors?
I did a lot of online searches. I was very lucky that our vendors were willing to travel to our site.
What is your very best advice to other mountain brides?
- Include as many people in the wedding planning and preparations as you can– it makes it a lot more fun and a mountain wedding can have some challenging logistics, esp. if in a more remote area. You'll be thankful for the help and it will be one less thing for you to think about on the wedding day!
- Also, be careful about the date of your wedding (take into account weather, which can still be cold in June due to altitude) and give guests as much time to plan and book hotels/rooms (which may be more limited in a remote area).
Yosemite Wedding Vendors
- Photographer: Kelsey Crews Photo
- Floral Designer: Willow Floral Design
- Dress: Wtoo (Watters)
- Venue: Evergreen Lodge
- Hair and Makeup: Bellisimo