Chic Weddings/Modern Weddings

Trendy, Modern, Upscale, Ranch Wedding

Lucite chairs, geometric stationery, eucalyptus and succulents – just a few of the fabulous and trendy details that make up this modern, California wedding. By choosing the elegant yet rustic Hummingbird Nest Ranch, Christine and Joel pulled off their romantic and totally upscale wedding.

We could talk and talk about the endless trendy details in this stunner (our Pinterest is getting a lot of love on this one!) Not-your-ordinary-lucite chairs fill reception space, along with gilded geometric candle holders, bundles of seeded eucalyptus, blush-colored blooms, and sweet cactus gifts in modern planters for all their guests.

With a half-up ‘do, Christine’s hairstyle is relaxed then made elegant with a dainty BHLDN hairpiece. Her bridesmaids mixed and matched so sweetly in Jenny Yoo, while our bride donned a modern, classic Lillian West sweetheart gown. Everyone’s looks were just the right amount of formal for the rustic, ranch space.

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Our Wedding Story

When I was younger I had always envisioned my wedding on the beach, wearing a big poufy gown. By the time Joel proposed after 6 years together, not much of that vision stood other than having an outdoor wedding. After getting engaged, Joel and I sat down to sort out what our highest priorities were for the wedding of our dreams, and our number one answer was a good dance party!

Joel’s other priorities revolved around making the day enjoyable for both friends and family of all generations, while my other priorities focused more on the details. We did also agree that as Californian’s living in Chicago, we needed an all outdoor wedding near where we grew up.

Knowing we wanted an outdoor wedding and a venue we could dance into the night at made narrowing down venues quite easy. We actually first saw our venue, Hummingbird Nest Ranch, while watching an episode of Master Chef. We quickly added it to our list and after seeing it in person I was sold. Not to mention, the cutoff time for the end of the wedding was 2 AM!

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The Style

Once we had a venue and a date it was easier for all of our other details to fall into place. I wanted a color pallet that represented the Fall season, but nothing that was screaming “pumpkin spice lattes”.

After countless hours on Pinterest, I nailed down my color pallet to blush, ivory, dusty rose and mustard. It was soft enough that it did not distract from the beauty of the venue, but had a little pop of color with the dusty rose and mustard that felt like Fall.

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Favorite Moments

While all of the details of the day were absolutely perfect and exactly how we envisioned it, our favorite part of the day had to be right after the ceremony when we got to sneak away as husband and wife for the first time.

We sat down at our sweetheart table while the guests were in the cocktail area, and the caterer brought over our passed hor d’oeuvres and signature cocktails to enjoy before we took more pictures. It was so amazing to finally feel the relief of everything being done and the only thing left was to have fun. And that epic dance party we had planned, oh yeah, that happened too!

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The Details

I also felt that it was important to bring a little bit of mine and Joel’s quirky character into the details to keep it fun, but still have it classic and romantic.

We came up with the idea of using geometric shapes throughout with geo terrariums as centerpieces, triangle garland on our arch, and other geo details in our printed pieces. I also designed a logo for us that had a geometric design that would be used on our invitations, menus, signature cocktail drink stirrers, and wherever else I could put it on.

Some other personal touches included our program fans that had different fun scrapbooking stock on the back side of each, handmade table numbers, personalized matchbooks, and the dessert table that was put together by my mom.

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The Planning

My mom was a huge part of the planning process. She has always been good at throwing parties and has great style, so I knew she would be an amazing resource for all things wedding. I should also give a shoutout to my sister and co-MOH, Emily, who did all of the calligraphy on our invitations and signs!

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The Reception

It was very important to my fiancé that everyone of all ages felt welcome and enjoyed themselves. We tried to think of everything to make sure that was the case.

We mixed up “His and Hers” cocktails based on our personal taste, but knew they would also be a hit with our craft cocktail-loving friends.

We had lawn games during our cocktail hour so that no one was bored. We had the DJ play lots of lyrical jazz and blues for all of our Gen-X and Baby Boomers.

Our dessert bar had something for everyone – our funfetti cake, French macaroons, Krispy Kreme donuts, zebra popcorn, and candy!

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Advice to Other Couples

One big suggestion is: definitely hire a coordinator. I wish I had hired a coordinator before anything else, before even picking our venue. They have so much insight and some hookups, so it would have been great to have them throughout the entire planning process.

If you can’t afford a full coordinator, get a month-of coordinator at least. It takes so much of the stress off of the couple in the weeks leading up to the wedding, and especially the day of. We picked Hovik because he was awesome to talk with on the phone, we knew we could get along with him, and he was an expert at our venue.

Another big lesson learned is to do your research on your vendors before you hire them, especially your photographer! We hired our first photographer pretty blindly based on price and because she was on our venue’s vendor list. It didn’t end up working with them and we had to let them go, but we lost a huge deposit by doing so.

Thankfully our coordinator helped us find Anya, who absolutely killed it! If you’re diligent with a coordinator and your vendors, then you can do what everyone suggests the day of – just enjoy!

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