After an unexpected proposal at their favorite beach, Camille and Louis started planning a heartfelt wedding that was full of thoughtful details. But the bride is careful to point out that they were in no rush! "One aspect I enjoyed most was the fact that we had a long engagement,” she says. “We had time to process ideas, to fine tune, and to change our minds.”
And thanks to these gorgeous photos by Larissa Cleveland, it's evident that their careful planning paid off. On August 20, 2016, the pair hosted a celebration at Sea Ranch Lodge in California, beautiful affair was held at the Sea Ranch in California, with the help of Dream a Little Dream Events. Keep reading to see more of their perfectly curated details—and 17 wedding cakes!
The couple introduced their theme for the day—natural beauty—with their elegant invitation suite. Each invite was personalized with an DIY envelope liner, which Camille and Louis created using pages from botanical art books. "Louis and I went through and thought about each guest and choose a flower that best represents their personality or what they mean to us,” she explains. The result was a charming design that sent a sweet message—and welcomed each guest in a special way.
True to theme, Camille selected a Mira Zwillinger gown that featured floral appliques on the sheer bodice, her way of highlighting their venue’s natural setting. While dress shopping, Camille admits that she listened to this advice from her aunt: "She said to make sure that I am comfortable in my dress,” Camille remembers. So that’s exactly what she did, putting the dress to the test by twirling and dancing around the store to ensure she’d feel free to move every which way on the big day. (And thanks to the flowy chiffon skirt, it passed with flying colors.)
The bride completed her look with a custom veil (with cascading florals!) and a bouquet of wildflowers in pinks and burgundy hues. She tied the blooms together with a silk ribbon and attached a locket featuring a photo of her late mother to ensure that they’d “walk down the aisle together.”
Camille and Louis selected a quaint patch of land by the barn Sea Ranch for their ceremony. There, they exchanged vows under a timber altar (made by the groom) that overlooked an existing redwood fence—and the ocean, of course. “We really didn’t want to over decorate and distract from the natural beauty,” Camille says.
After the ceremony, guests moved to a tent on the opposite side of the barn, where cocktails and dinner were served. And on their way to the tent, the newlyweds got to take in a special memento they helped create: "Instead of a registry, we asked our guests to send us photos that represent love to them,” Camille says. “They sent their wedding photo and family portraits, and it was a gift to us to see these heartfelt photos throughout the planning process. They gave us perspective on what the event really represents.” On the big-day, these photos were hung on twine to create a “gallery of love” on the way to the reception.
Once inside the tent, guests were greeted by a sparkling bar serving only bubbles: prosecco, champagne, and even sparkling juice so everyone could feel special with a glass of bubbly and toast to the happy couple.
Since it was still light out during dinner, the bright white tent needed no additional lighting. This allowed the couple to focus on their flowers, which brought a vibrant pop of color to each table. The long wooden tables were adorned with white linen table runners and low arrangements of roses, ferns, and other warm-colored wildflowers, reinforcing the surrounding beauty of the environment.
And while the reception was stunning, there was one element that stood out: The cake table. "The cakes were a big deal to me,” Camille says. "I went cake tasting before dress shopping!” The result was a cake table that featured 17 wedding cakes, each with its own décor and unique flavors that ranged from chiffon cake with lemon pastry cream to blackberry compote with vanilla buttercream.
Looking back on the process, Camille has this advice for future brides: "Have a long engagement! You will call him your husband for the rest of your life, so enjoy calling him your fiancé."
Venue & Catering: Sea Ranch Lodge
Wedding Planner: Dream a Little Dream Events
Officiant: Shining One
Bride’s Dress & Veil: Mira Zwillinger
Bride’s Shoes: Lanvin
Hair & Makeup: Eliza Desch
Groom’s Attire: Kiton
Engagement Ring & Wedding Bands: Tiffany & Co.
Floral Design: Lambert Floral Studio
Invitations & Paper Products: Minted
Music: Elan Artists
Cakes: Franny’s Cup and Saucer
Rentals: Encore Rentals
Photography: Larissa Cleveland