One Couple's Lush Secret Garden-Inspired Wedding in California

Real Weddings

When Jennifer Mumford, owner of HUB Clothing, first met Randy Hodge in October of 2012, they weren't exactly in the same place. In fact, they were thousands of miles apart! "Randy and I met on while he, a Captain in the Army, was deployed in Iraq," Jennifer says. They went from weekly emails to daily, getting to know one another in letter form before ever speaking on the phone. Randy came home just before the holidays and, in January of 2013, the two finally met in person. "We've been inseparable ever since!" says the bride.

After proposing in Sedona, Arizona in early 2014, Jennifer and Randy jumped feet-first into planning their secret garden-inspired wedding in Montecito, California. On July 26th, 2014, they invited 100 guests to join them at San Ysidro Ranch for a lush, ethereal celebration planned by Stefanie Cove and Danielle Abikasis of Yifat Oren & Associates.

Get lost in this natural wonderland, photographed by Amy & Stuart Photography!

For the ceremony, Jennifer went classic with a lace column dress and full tulle overskirt by Monique Lhuillier. "It was romantic, cool, and had the fashionable feel I was looking for," says the boutique-owning bride. Randy looked sharp in a navy suit by Hugo Boss.

"San Ysidro Ranch is one of the most beautiful properties we've ever seen," says Jennifer. "The gardens are heavenly, and the cottages were perfect for our guests. It felt both comfortable and luxurious."

"I'm 5'10", so I was lucky enough to wear flats all day," says Jennifer of her crystal-embellished Christian Louboutin shoes.

Of course the fashion-savvy bride had a bevy of accessories! "My sisters and I all have Van Cleef & Arpels necklaces, so I wore the three of them as wrap bracelets, and borrowed rings from my mom that my dad had given her in the '70s," she says.

Jennifer loves color, so she had her bridesmaids don fuchsia and coral Monique Lhuillier dresses. She carried a bright bouquet of English garden roses, dahlias, scabiosa and sweet peas, while her bridesmaids carried white and green bouquets of parrot tulips, hydrangeas, gladiola, chrysanthemums, and dianthus to contrast with their bright frocks.

Randy's burgundy scabiosa boutonniere was designed to match Jennifer's bouquet.

As guests arrived at the ceremony, they were greeted with the scent of gardenias. A table was set nearby with boutonnieres for the men and miniature gardenias for women to put in their hair.

On the ranch's lawn, the trellis was draped in hot pink and fuchsia dinner plate dahlias, hydrangeas, calla lilies, and garden roses. An aisle of rose petals led to the altar, between rows of white chairs.

Vines, branches, and peach roses added texture to the rich color palette. Elegant paper fans were placed on guests' seats to keep them cool in the California sun.

Jennifer and her father walked down the aisle hand in hand. "It's one of my favorite memories from the whole day," she says. She and Randy exchanged traditional vows, while Randy's sister and a friend of Jennifer's did readings of the Apache Blessing and "Love" by Roy Croft.

The couple mixed it up by having a bluegrass band play during the ceremony. Jennifer walked down the aisle to Miranda Lambert's "Oklahoma Sky." After the couple made it official, guests moved to the lawn to play croquet and sip cocktails.

Dahlias, roses, and fresh peaches carried the bright color scheme through to cocktail hour.

Throughout the evening, guests sipped peach bellinis, greyhounds, and blood orange margaritas, keeping with the wedding's coral hue.

As guests left cocktail hour, they found their escort cards on a board crisscrossed with midori silk ribbon and studded with blooming gardenias.

Next to the reception area, cozy lounge furniture gave guests a place to gather and relax.

Textured pillows complemented the dinner tables' gilded accents. "I love color, so we topped the tables in gorgeous forest green linens," says Jennifer.

Gold and pink chargers were paired with clear, amber, olive, and purple goblets and gold flatware. Lush jewel toned flowers surrounded crystal candelabras, and patterned napkins were wrapped around menus that detailed the seared filet of beef and butter-braised Maine Lobster dinner.

For the reception, Jennifer changed into a beaded Jenny Packham gown with a deep v-neck and fluttering sleeves. "It was so romantic and ethereal, perfect for our party! It was both beautiful and comfortable."

Randy and Jennifer ordered an all-white cake, then had their florist adorn it with dahlias and roses. "We placed the cake in front of a living wall of sword fern, maiden hair fern, and Spanish moss. We also used a living wall as the backdrop for our band," she says. The cake featured alternating layers of vanilla sponge cake with lemon and berries and chocolate sponge cake with dark chocolate mousse.

The newlyweds, who honeymooned on the Amalfi Coast and in Sicily, shared their first dance to "All of Me" by John Legend, then hit the dance floor with their friends. "During the after-party, I looked around and saw all of our friends and family belting the lyrics to 'Like a Prayer,'" says Jennifer. "Everyone was having so much fun, and it was exactly what we wanted."

Her advice for couples planning their weddings? "If you can fit it in your budget, hire a good event planner. It's the smartest thing we did, and they made our dreams come true!"

Ceremony & Reception Venue: San Ysidro Ranch || Wedding Planner: Stefanie Cove and Danielle Abikasis of Yifat Oren & Associates || Bride's Wedding Dresses: Monique Lhuillier, Jenny Packham || Shoes: Christian Louboutin, René Caovilla || Jewelry: Van Cleef & Arpels, Robert C. Wesley || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Monique Lhuillier || Groom's Attire: Hugo Boss || Groomsmen's Attire: Men's Wearhouse || Engagement Ring & Wedding Bands: Robert C. Wesley || Floral Design: The Velvet Garden || Invitations & Paper Goods: Tiny Pine Press || Music: Ceremony & Cocktail hour - Rocky Neck Bluegrass Band, Reception - The Hudson Project || Catering & Cake: San Ysidro Ranch || Rentals: Classic Party Rentals, Casa de Perrin || Late-Night Food Trucks: The Fry Girl, The Burger Bus || Videography: Hart Pictures || Photography: Amy & Stuart Photography

Get inspired by another stunning California wedding in the video below!

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