Crafty California Ranch Wedding: Jen + Caleb

bride and groom

Jen + Caleb wanted to create a crafty and rustic ambience that was both interactive + welcoming for their wedding. Vintage goods, a collection of macramé owls, doilies and quilts pay homage to Jen’s at-home studio and style of artistic practice. As an avid crocheter and social craftivist, Jen wanted to compliment the already existing beauty of the Rancho Ontiveros Ranch with her obsession of 1970’s craft. Caleb wanted to represent his personal history with the setting and theme of the day. Ultimately their collective goal for their wedding was to emphasize their love for friends + family and give them a beautiful place to celebrate. Big congrats to Jen + Caleb and thanks to Ken Kienow for the photos!

bridesmaid dresses

sunflower bouquet

succulent bouquet

bridesmaids wearing boots

groomsmen wearing vests

ceremony altar

outdoor ceremony

outdoor ceremony

Our Favorite Memory From The Wedding

Caleb: THE KISS and Jen’s vows—the commitment and lifelong promise Jen made to me, and the fact that they were handwritten and this was the first time hearing them, that they were so personal and true to Jen’s personality and essence, made everything else about the day not to seem to matter.

Jen: The ceremony and my borrowed wedding jewelry — retorted by my sister and Matron-of-honor: “When you walk down the aisle, only look at Caleb because nothing else matters,” I did exactly that. The first time I saw him adorned in his wedding attire and looking so incredibly handsome, while I anticipated being nervous and many tears, in this moment I felt overcome by a sense of confidence and excitement. I also loved that we both wrote our own vows – it made the whole experience meaningful and so memorable.

outdoor ceremony

sunflower ceremony

Our Musical Choices

Processional: Wildflowers – Tom Petty

Recessional: Bonaparte’s Retreat – Willie Nelson

First Dance: If I Needed You – Townes Van Zandt

wedding party

succulent bouquet

flower hair piece

ceremony program

vintage rustic decor

love mugs

sunflower centerpieces

eat drink and be married

seed packets

embroidery hoops

old records hanging

wooden bird cake toppers

yarn diamond sticks

bride and groom dancing


Our Advice To Those Planning Now

Caleb: Keep it simple and true to yourself. Set goals and deadlines, keeping the bigger picture in mind. Do not feel compelled to use traditions that are not meaningful or important to you. For the day of, get a lot of rest the night before and eat something!! Delegate responsibilities (nicely) to others because you need to make sure you have enough time for yourself.

Jen: Utilize all the wonderful assets and resources of friends and family. For us, the wedding would not have been as beautiful, meaningful and special without the special touches (i.e. ceremony canopy made by brother-in-law Josh Alvidrez, bar and claw foot tub of beer provided by Ontiveros family friends, food area, appetizer design and menu created by Caleb’s Aunt Pat and cousin Brooke, photo booth design and god’s eyes created by Jen and bridesmaids). As reminded by Jen’s mom, do not try to do EVERYTHING but if possible, do as much as you can! Find the balance between handmade and outsourcing. The areas you as the bride or planner feel most connected with, spend your time and energy executing. The other less important areas delegate to others or find frugal yet classy ways to make them work. Remember that all the hard work and planning that leads up to this one day should be kept in perspective; the day is not the end result, it is the beginning of a beautiful life of love and commitment. The day goes by extremely fast, and you probably will forget to eat and drink, and the day/week/month after you still try to piece it together. Try not to fixate on this but rather think about how wonderful married life can and will be, that you have found your lifelong partner. Lastly, make sure to relentlessly thank all of those who made your day so special!!

photography: Ken Kienow // venue name: Rancho Ontiveros Ranch, Santa Maria, California // hairpiece: Whichgoose // bride's shoes: turquoise boots purchased online at Sheplers // hair stylist: Janeen Wallace from Salon 123 // paper goods: All paper goods created by bride + printed locally in Oakland // catering: collection of Ontiveros family and friends for infamous Santa Maria style BBQ // music: DJ Jay Lizo // officiant: Johnny Calkins // floral design: Adornments // wedding dress: Saja, purchased locally at Bella Bridesmaid in San Francisco // bridesmaid dresses: purchased locally in Oakland at boutique "Sway" and online at Lulu's; Matron of honor dress purchased at Anthropologie // make-up: Delia Munoz from Bella Capelli Salon // groom attire: collected assemble of vintage vest from San Francisco vintage store, ivory-colored shirt Van Heusen shirt from JCPenney, Wrangler Wrancher pants from Sheplers, boots purchased in Hawyard, CA from Cobblers, belt buckle purchased from antique store in Texas (gift from Mother-of-bride), tie was borrowed from groom's Poppa Chester's old collection // invitations: All paper goods created by bride + printed locally in Oakland // cake: desserts and pies from Gina's Piece of Cake; bride's cake made by friend and artist Sarah Hart of Calla Lily Cakes in King Salmon, CA