Though Wynne Calcutt and Tommy Thacher had known one another for a few years, it wasn't until she joined his classroom at Telluride Mountain School as a co-teacher that they really became close. After hours spent skiing with students, lesson planning after school, and traveling together on field trips, the two learned that they really enjoyed each other's company. Then, when Tommy decided to move on from teaching and open his own brewery, Telluride Brewing Company, they decided to go out for a date, which turned into many more. And on June 15, 2013, after a weekend of camping and hiking in the San Juan Mountains, Tommy proposed at the summit of Mt. Sneffels. "With the winds gusting and weather shifting up at 14,157 feet, it was quite dramatic and a complete surprise," says Wynne.
Flash forward a year (almost to the day!), and this adventurous couple invited 230 guests to town for a weekend celebration that included a meet-and-greet cocktail party, kickball game and BBQ in the park, a rehearsal dinner on a ski slope, and, of course, the main event at a local friend's private property.
When shopping at Anna Be in Denver, CO, Wynne found this simple strapless dress by Tara LaTour and knew it was "the one!" For the ceremony, she paired her gown with a Lela Rose lace overlay with quarter-length sleeves.
Wynne accessorized with a long, cathedral length veil, also purchased at Anna Be, and vintage clip-on earrings specially picked out by two of her bridesmaids. For her something old and something borrowed, the bride's aunt had her grandmother's old pearls made into a bracelet.
When it came to picking out dresses for her bridal party, Wynne put her bridesmaids in navy to match Tommy's suit and the groomsmen's sport coats. But she did let her girls pick either a strapless, v-neck, or high neckline for their Leavers lace dresses by J. Crew. For flowers, Wynne kept it simple and light by asking each bridesmaid to carry small bouquet of pink astilbe.
Wynne carried a cascading mix of white peonies, stephanotis, trailing ruscus, garden roses, and spray roses, an "updated" version of the flowers her mother carried on her wedding day in 1979.
Set in a field with picture-perfect mountaintops on the horizon, Wynne says the ceremony location was already so stunning that they decided to keep the décor fairly simple. Her wedding planner, Wendy, and event designer, Frannie Aura Major of New Leaf Designs, set the scene by creating an aisle of white rose petals and adding three aspen log "windows" as a backdrop for the I do's. "They sort of reminded me of chapel windows so it was nice touch for an outdoor wedding," Wynne says.
During the ceremony, Wynne asked her older brother to read a section of "On Love" from The Prophet by poet Kahlil Gibran. Her parents read from the poem on their wedding day, so, of course, Wynne and Tommy wanted to follow suit.
When Wynne and Tommy kissed for the first time as husband and wife, they were surprised by a shower of white rose petals.
During the ceremony and cocktail hour outside, guests listened to a small bluegrass band put together by Tommy and Wynne's friend Tuck Gillette. After drinks on the lawn, guests walked into the tented reception through a willowy entrance of lights.
With the motif of "organic elegance," Wynne worked with her florist and planner to make the white tent feel more appropriate for a rustic, mountain wedding. They did so by installing a suspended canopy of greenery over the dance floor and hanging willow chandeliers over the long dining tables in the center of the tent.
Wynne began planning the reception décor by collecting images of flowers and arrangements, then working with her planner and florist to narrow it down. One thing was definitely clear: she wanted blooms in pinks, peaches, and corals. With such a bright color palette in mind, they catered to the "organic" feel of the day by keeping the arrangements loose and low to the tables, which were covered in neutral tablecloths. Between each centerpiece, candles were placed in a mixture of mercury glass and glass tea light holders.
The vanilla-and-lemon-flavored wedding cake was covered in textured buttercream frosting, with blush and pink roses decorating the tiers.
Instead of a traditional groom's cake, the bride and groom opted for chocolate stout "groom's cupcakes" made from Telluride Brewing Company's Ski in Ski Stout beer. The mini confections were topped with Irish cream cheese frosting and whiskey caramel drizzle.
After watching This Must Be the Band perform multiple times at the Sheridan Opera House in Telluride, Wynne and Tommy knew that they had to have the Talking Heads cover band at their wedding. So, the group flew in from Chicago, and the newlyweds choose "Dream Operator" (by the Talking Heads, of course) for their first dance. Turns out, the crowd loved the band just as much as the bride and groom! "We ended up breaking up the dance party because our guests didn't want the set to stop," the bride says. "I'm not kidding, people were really dancing hard!"
When the band packed up, friend and DJ Ryan Smith took the stage, and Wynne and Tommy danced with guests and local townies (they had a bus bring 30 more friends up late-night!) until about 1:30 a.m. before heading to nearby Dunton Hot Springs in Dunton, Colorado for a mini-moon.
While Wynne was very much a hands-on planner, she has a few words of advice for the day-of action. "At your ceremony, take a moment to look out at your guests— it's so special to see your dear friends and family looking back at you," she says. "The reception becomes a whirlwind so I think this is a special thing to think about doing at your ceremony."
Ceremony & Reception Venue: Private Property || Event Planner: Wendy Jacobs Hampton of Soiree Telluride || Bride's Wedding Dress: Tara LaTour || Hair: Kate DeCook of Bliss and Bang Salon || Makeup: Carmen Wolcott of Telluride Makeup Artist || Groom's Suit: Paul Stuart || Event Designer: Frannie Aura Major of New Leaf Designs || Reception Music: This Must Be the Band || Rentals: Viking Rentals || Cake: Jamie Intemann || Photography: Chowen Photography