This Couple Canceled Their Big Wedding for a 50-Person Party in Napa Valley

Real Weddings

Though Kristen and Christopher had started planning a wedding in Toronto for 140 people, they changed their plans when, on their annual trip to California, they found themselves at the Carneros Inn and fell in love with the peaceful setting. "We were blown away by everything from the farm-to-table menu to the breathtaking views to the cozy cottages, so we scrapped our plans and invited just 50 guests to Napa," says Kristen.

And it looks like they made the right choice! Their May 18th, 2014 wedding was full of natural beauty, delicious wine pairings, and a late-night dance party. Allyson Magda was there to photograph it all, so keep reading and take a peek!

Black-and-white invitations gave guests all the details about the couple's intimate affair. Kristen's bouquet of blush peonies, white ranunculus, and silver brunia berries was hand-tied with cream ribbon.

The bride wore a strapless silk Mikado gown with an asymmetrical neckline by Amsale. "I tried not to overthink it and just went with my instincts. I knew I'd need to be comfortable being in the spotlight for a full day!" She accented the crystal flower brooch at her waist with a 1950s Carole Tanenbaum necklace.

Instead of picking a design or color for her bridesmaids, Kristen asked them to wear long gowns in a pastel hue, which was enough guidance to perfectly tie together their individual looks. Christopher wore a navy blue Cucinelli tuxedo, while his groomsmen wore navy suits with white shirts and no tie to give them a "California cool" vibe. He also wore a playful pair of socks, a gift from his bride-to-be to "keep his cold feet away."

The ceremony took place in the Inn's apple orchard, beneath an arch of smilax garlands and spray roses. Aisle chairs were decorated with white peonies, and the aisle was covered in a thick blanket of cream and blush rose petals.

Inside the Hilltop Dining Room, silver runners dressed up white tables flanked by Philippe Starck Ghost Chairs. Vases were filled with individual varieties of blooms, including pink and yellow tulips, hydrangeas, ranunculus, and peonies.

Glass chargers and mercury glass votives kept the reception light and airy.

Guests sipped two signature cocktails, a vodka mule and a Cosmo made with lavender syrup. For dinner, they dined on grapefruit, avocado, and Manchego salads, Alaskan halibut, and filet mignon. The couple skipped the cake in favor of a crepe station, then got to dancing! "We had an epic after-party in our bridal suite," says Kristen. "And all of the single people at our wedding met someone! One of the couples has stayed together, and they're getting married soon."

Kristen's advice is for couples to enjoy themselves. "If you two are happy, everyone else will follow suit and have a great time."

Ceremony & Reception Venue: The Carneros Inn || Bride's Wedding Dress: Amsale, from Dina Alonzi Bridal || Shoes: Jimmy Choo || Jewelry: Carole Tanenbaum, from White Bridal Boutique || Hair & Makeup: It's A Date at the Powder Room || Groom's Attire: Brunello Cucinelli || Florist: Julie Stevens Design || Invitations & Paper Goods: Christine Boake || Place Cards: Calligraphy by Diane || Ceremony Music: Lawrence String Group || Catering: The Carneros Inn || Rentals: Standard Party Rentals || Photography: Allyson Magda Photography

Did you love this Napa Valley wedding? Then check out another couple wed in the California hotspot in the video below!

Give a Subscription to Brides Magazine as a Gift

Get personalized planning advice, exclusive offers and must-read wedding news.

Thank You
for Signing Up!

Check your e-mail inbox for the latest updates from