Notes from the Bride, Lara: How did you envision your wedding prior to planning? I knew more about what I didn't want for my wedding, which I think made planning somewhat easier because I didn't have a clear idea of what the day had to be. My priorities were the band and the flow of the weekend. I knew that I wanted a few surprise factors, but more than anything I wanted my guests to have fun and feel like they didn't have to work hard to get to the various events over the weekend. How did you decide on your venue? We needed a place that was going to hold at least 200 guests for the wedding, which was a challenge in the Vail Valley. We also knew that our colors were going to be pretty traditional with whites and blues so we did not want a location that had a ton of deep colors (i.e. reds and greens). The Lodge was a pretty easy choice given the factors that were the most important to us. The majority of our guests stayed at the location and loved the accessibility to town. What was your color palette and your style vision? My color palette was mostly blue, white, and champagne. I wanted the flowers to be white with hints of blush and champagne and I also wanted to make sure we incorporated a lot of aspen tree elements to make it feel like a mountain wedding. I wanted a very romantic feel as well so keeping the room dark with pin lights was key. The blue uplights around the room kept the room light enough to see, but kept the focus of the evening on the dance floor which was my goal. What unique elements details did you include? The archway entrance was something that I was really excited about. I also loved our paper flower backdrop behind the band. The hallway to the escort cards was draped on either side with floating candles and the most gorgeous orchid and hydrangea floral arrangements at the end of the hallway above the escort cards. Rather than have place cards at the table, I added the guest's names to the top of their menu. The ceremony musician, Christian Stephens and I worked on adding a unique piece to the ceremony. She and her team created a really beautiful rendition of Young and Beautiful by Lana Del Rey for the bridesmaids to walk down the aisle to. I also had a portrait done in my Grandmother's wedding dress, which was the dress that my mother wore as well. Even though I chose not to wear the dress the day of the wedding, it was really special to have pictures of all 3 generations wearing the same dress. What was your favorite moment? When I showed my grandmother and mother the portrait I had done wearing the same wedding dress they both wore. Also, the first time Brian and I saw each other for our first look. What was your favorite crafted detail? There are too many to choose from. Probably the archway, the cakes, and the tall centerpieces on aspen tree bases. Flowers: Vintage Magnolia (hydrangeas, orchids, peonies, and roses were the main flowers I chose). As mentioned before, I wanted to stick with white flowers and because the room was so dark, they really popped. Gown: Oscar de la Renta (purchased from the original Neiman Marcus in downtown Dallas, with Bridal stylist Mary Kay). It was the last dress I tried on and I knew that it was definitely the one. Veil: The veil was my Grandmother's and it was made for her at the same location as her dress, Harzfeld’s, which she described as the best ladies store in Kansas City. The lace on the veil was antique lace that was in the family. Cakes: Mountain Flour (the wedding cake was classic white wedding cake and the grooms cake was chocolate). The grooms cake was a surprise for my husband to be. He played lacrosse in high school and college so I made sure that both schools were represented on the cake, which was a lacrosse field with a stick and the balls had the school logos on them. Favors: In the welcome bags guests received custom cups, coozies, sunscreen, hangover kits, snacks, a small bottle of local vodka and a chapstick made by a local company called Green Bee. At the reception each guest had a pair of sunglasses at their seat and we had blue foam glow sticks and neon necklaces’ that were passed out towards the end of the night. Bridesmaids Gifts: Mi Golondrina dresses. These are the most fun outfits to wear while getting ready and the girls will be able to use them forever. The flower girls received similar little dresses. Groomsmen Gifts: Bow ties and American flag suspenders What is one piece of advice that you would give brides-to-be? Do not sweat the small stuff and try to go into everything with an open mind. Also, remember that you are surrounded by professionals who do this all day everyday. You cannot possibly control every detail so accepting that early on will make your life easier in this whole process. If you have a wedding planner like I did (Meg Stepanek at Gemini Event Planning is the absolute BEST), make sure you communicate openly and consistently. This is the person you want to be on the same page with about everything.
IN Photography | Ceremony Location: Vail Golf Club | Venue: The Lodge at Vail | Planner: Meg Stepanek of Gemini Event Planning | Florist: Vintage Magnolia | Oscar de la Renta | Carrie Stockert | Hair Stylist: Jennifer Conley of Bliss Studio | Band: Tunisia Band | Cake: Mountain Flour Lighting: Pink Monkey Solutions