Joui + Andrew went above and beyond to make their wedding uniquely theirs, from embellishing her own dress and that of all her bridesmaids to having fun centerpieces – shoes for a flower vessel! Even their guests got all decked out in costume for the occasion. After a sweet outdoor ceremony at Mayacamas Ranch, Calistoga CA, they had a relaxed dinner, lots of dancing, a barista (to get everyone to dance more on a caffeine high) and wrapped it up with a ice cream station. What’s not to love! Thanks so much to Sabine Scherer for sending this stunning wedding my way!
From Joui: Andrew and I wanted a romantic wedding in nature where all our friends and family could meet and spend a relaxing weekend together. When Katheryn of Dream a Little Dream Events suggested Mayacamas Ranch in Calistoga we knew we had found our spot. 55 of us were able to stay from Friday – Sunday and many of our friends and family lodged in nearby hotels and homes. This allowed for everyone to relax, swim, hike and get to know one and another before the wedding itself. We even had about 70 people at the ranch for the rehersal dinner where we played a ‘how we met video’ by Major Diamond Productions, which really got the community laughing, buzzing and getting to know each other way in advance of our ceremony and reception. The morning of Saturday our dear friend and yoga instructor Chad Stose led some 35 of us in an 90 min yoga practice. It was the perfect way to get exercised, relaxed and present for the big moment to come!
As far as the overall wedding theme and vision, I was inspired by the amazing nature around us with a mixture of bold vibrant colors that was a playful mixture of couture meets vaudeville meets vintage. Melissa who did all the decor and flowers really appreciated the artist in me and created a setting that everyone thought I designed.
After trying on some gowns, I decided I wanted a sleek 1920’s style dress yet mixed with a modern flair. As a designer I knew I could do it. I just needed to find the dress to embelish it. I finally found my gown at Torso vintage. When I bought it, it was simple and gorgeous, just white silk with a long train. The sales guy told me “Honey, keep it simple don’t change a thing!” The thing about me is I’m not a simple woman, I needed texture and intrigue in my gown. Simple wouldn’t be me! After trying on a Lazaro dress I got the inspiration to make the bottom of the dress covered in silk organza ruffles. I had pleated and hand sewed about at least 20 yards of ruffles onto the dress. At some points I had to hang the dress from a chandelier at home to accomplish this. The ruffles took the longest. Then, my designer friend donated a lot of gorgeous French lace samples that I interwove into the rest of the gown, it grows like a vine all the way from the waist of the dress into and around the rest of the train. When it was finished and I tried it on for the first time I realized I had truly made the dress of my dreams!
I knew I wanted a cathedral veil, or something very long and romantic to match the intensity of the dress. When researching 1920’s veils the problem was that they looked a bit like a shower cap. In order to avoid this I created a hairband that matched the dress, and then had the veil snap from under my hair instead of over my hair. The snaps were a nice touch because after the ceremony I could keep the hairband but ditch the veil.
For my bridesmaids I also wanted something that was a nod to the past but also current. I decided to look at my girls as a collection for a runway show. Each dress would be different yet compliment the rest. Marc Jacobs spring 2011 was the main inspiration for the colors. I loved the use of bright pinks, reds, burgundies and reds. With each girl we ended up buying 1950/60’s dresses from La Rosa Vintage. Then, I added a little something unique to each dress to add that special flair and play that is so me and also complimentary to the woman wearing it. I also knew that each girl had to have a hairpiece. It would be my gift to them. So I created individual hairpieces out of scraps from the embellishing of their dresses and allowed each woman to find the one that fit her personality and face.
For my groom I wanted something classic with a little attitude. So we bought him a 1920’s tuxedo, we went very classic with everything but the tuxedo shirt. He wanted my touch in his outfit, so I added lace ruffles to the shirt with a black ruffle in the middle that created a tie effect. So it almost appeared he was wearing a bow tie and a regular neck tie. Just the perfect amount of intrigue and complexity we were looking for. Groomsmen: Again vintage. Didn’t want them all wearing the same outfit, but def. all in grey, told them to involve pink and reds in the shirt and tie selections, and no black shoes. We also bought boater hats which took the look to the next level.
How the day came together was magic. Our ceremony was everything I imagined it to be. We worked three months with our friend Kate Jones to create a rite of passage that was powerful and meaningful. Every word that was spoken was intentional. Being married in nature looking over the valley with Mt. St. Helena as a witness was everything I wanted it to be. I felt transported. Our vows made such an impression on our guests that some of them are inspired to renew their vows. Literally, was the best weekend of my life.
Our guests were told to dress in costume, vintage, Bollywood or bizarre. And if they couldn’t manage that, we told them to come their most festive. To ensure that most people looked their most brilliant, I had a costume table where one of my eccentric girlfriends helped people add panache to their outfits. Walking down the isle was such a treat, it was like walking into a Fellini film!
Thanks so much to Joui + Andrew for sharing their unique + fun wedding with us!
photography: Sabine Scherer of Sabine Scherer Photography // wedding planner: Brittani Waldman of Dream a Little Dream Events // catering: California Rose Catering // venue: Mayacamas Ranch in Calistoga, California // florist: A Simple Ceremony // furniture: Hartmann Studios // linen: La Tavola Linen // lighting: Creative Lighting Design // hair & make-up: Lisa Zomer // gown & bridemaids dresses, hairpieces and veil: made by the Bride – Joui, Turandot // groom’s clothes: 1920’s suit Vintage at LA Rosa Vintage SF
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