One Couple Planned an Off-the-Grid Wedding in the Mountains of Telluride, Colorado

Jenna and Jacob found a secluded spot for their tented celebration

Updated 01/10/17

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

When Jenna Rehnborg first met Jacob O’Brien at a Telluride, Colorado, pizza restaurant in November of 2014, it was love at first sight. “We had both gone to watch football with a mutual friend, who left not too long after he introduced us,” says Jake. “Jenna immediately slipped into his seat, and by the next day, we were moving in together.” A whirlwind romance followed, with Jake spontaneously buying an engagement ring while on a family trip to Hong Kong to visit Jenna’s brother. Jake got Jenna’s family in on the plan, and proposed on a cliff overlooking the ocean along Dragon’s Back Trail a mere five months after the couple met.

They fell in love quickly, but took their time planning a wedding. They selected July 3, 2016, as the date, and set out to find the perfect venue near the mountain town they call home. They found a gorgeous 100-year-old property, owned by Telluride Sleighs and Wagons, and knew it was just the spot for their tented (and totally off-the-grid!) summer ‘do. “Ours was one of the first weddings they’d hosted on the property, so we knew it would be a challenge,” says Jenna. “But we loved the backdrop of the mountain range, the groves of aspen trees, and the fact that we already knew the owner.” Combining a mountain vibe with Italian farm-to-table styling in honor of Jenna’s family, this couple created a natural, organic event to cap off a three-day wedding weekend retreat for 250 guests. Planned by Polished Fun and photographed by Cat Mayer Studio, this was a Colorado wedding weekend in the mountains that you won’t want to miss.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

“I knew it was the dress for me because it made me feel like a princess,” says the bride of her layered tulle ball gown from Hayley Paige. She wore silver sandals for her walk down the aisle, then changed into glitter-covered Kate Spade Keds for a night of dancing. Lucille, the couple’s pug, came along to walk down the aisle with the couple’s ring bearer.

To complement the venue’s natural wildflowers, Jenna’s bouquet combined peonies, navy viburnum berries, hellebore, lavender sweet peas, orlaya, cornflower, ranunculus, sage, lavender, delphinium, and dusty miller.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

The ceremony took place with the mountains of Telluride in the background. A garland of bay leaf, olive leaf, and rosemary lined the aisle, and bowls of peonies, hellebore, sage, and viburnum welcomed guests to the dramatic outdoor setting. “Jake built our arbor out of vintage skis, a nod to our love of skiing and my job as a ski instructor,” says Jenna.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

A guitarist played “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles during the processional, a fitting choice as the couple’s wedding day was the first sunny day after weeks of rain!

Jake and Jenna’s wedding was so off-the-grid that they actually ended up consulting with the property’s owners to help make it more accessible. “We worked with them to widen the access road and clear fallen trees,” says Jake. “But we wanted to leave everything else as natural as possible, from the land and grass to the huge fields of wildflowers.”

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

Escort cards were displayed on a table topped with soft gray linen and peonies and olive branches in a wooden vessel. Each card was handwritten on torn paper and tucked into logs.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

Dinner took place beneath a white tent, where even the tent posts were draped with gorgeous greenery. Nearby, a second tent was set up for dancing next to a vintage pickup truck, a mobile bar from Wolfpig.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

Inside the dinner tent, a mix of bare and draped long and round tables surrounded a central installation of hanging greenery and lanterns. “We wanted everything to look really natural and organic,” says the bride. The two head tables and the sweetheart table were set under a trellis of branches.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

Natural Tuscan linens were draped over tables and then topped with arrangements of peonies and sweet peas. Others were decorated with potted herbs and garlands of eucalyptus and olive branches, enhancing the natural Italian feel. A sprig of lavender was left at each guest’s seat.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

The farm-to-table Italian dinner was served alongside two signature cocktails: A Moscow Mule for the bride and a Whiskey Sour for the groom.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

For dessert, the newlyweds cut into a small cake topped with vintage skis, then served their guests a spread of mini cupcakes in flavors like funfetti, chocolate, and red velvet.

Photo by Cat Mayer Studio
Photo by Cat Mayer Studio

“Jenna and her father did a choreographed dance they’d been practicing for months and brought down the house,” says Jake. “Then my mom and I danced to ‘What a Wonderful World,’ and every guest was singing and crying by the end.” But that wasn’t all: Jenna surprised Jake with a tap dance! “I still don’t know how she performed in her dress, but she slayed it, and really kicked off the rest of the night,” he remembers.

The couple, who are (appropriately) heading to the Alps for a ski honeymoon, advise brides and grooms to enjoy every moment. “The day will go by so fast!”

Ceremony & Reception Venue: Telluride Sleighs and Wagons || Wedding Planner: Polished Fun || Bride's Wedding Dress: Hayley Paige || Groom's & Groomsmen's Attire: Studio Suits || Florist: New Leaf Design || Invitations: Lauren Metzger Graphic Designer || Music: DJ Soul Atomic || Catering: Zest Catering || Cake: Bespoke Cakery || Rentals: Premier Special Events; La Tavola Linens; Exceptional Settings || Bar: Wolfpig || Videographer: Larisa Graham Films || Photographer: Cat Mayer Studio

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