Allow us to be real for a few…. there are definitive trends in wedding palettes. Blush, gold, navy, peach, sage…. the colors you choose truly depends on the design style you lean towards. When Stephanie called us looking for a designer and planner for her intimate wedding at the Montelucia‘s Camelback Villa, she warned us (her words) that her vision was unconventional.
Not wanting a large scale event, but not wanting to elope, Stephanie and Jesse opted for a micro-wedding – an intimate gathering of family and friends. A traditional elopement is the bride, groom, minister and maybe two witnesses. Inviting 14 or so members of your family doesn’t qualify as an elopement. Enter the term micro-wedding – a celebration containing all the elements of a traditional large-scale wedding but with far fewer guests. We have seen an uptick in micros over the past few years and honestly, we are digging the trend.
But we digress, back to Stephanie and Jesse… We may, or may not, have done a small happy dance at the prospect of designing a fall-time jewel-toned wedding. Stephanie, a destination bride, turned over design control to us and we ran full-speed ahead.
With no bridesmaids, Stephanie was hanging with us in the immense and gorgeous Camelback Villa. Normally I would be a bit on edge with a bride watching our every move during install and set, but Steph just chilled, cool as a cucumber and comfortable in her denim shirt and shorts, against the door jamb of the master suite and chatted. If we ever let a bride lift the veil and watch our controlled chaos again, then she must promise to be as relaxed as Steph. I mean, come on, who else can pull off this look?!!
One of my favorite selling points about the Camelback Villa is the amazing view of Camelback Mountain. Granted, in the following photo, you only see the head, but trust me, that camel is magnificent. Steph and Jesse opted for no attendants to share the altar which set the tone that, while family is important, they have each other. They also opted for a simple altar set, two manzanita trees adorned with hanging candles and Moroccan lanterns – both to provide ambient light once the sun set.
The couple didn’t want a unity candle or sand ceremony but wanted to commemorate their union in a unique and meaningful way so Gwen Waring of Arizona Ministers suggested a ring warming ceremony. Now, normally we would not advocate for passing the actual wedding rings around during the ceremony, but this group seemed pretty trustworthy so we decided to throw caution to the wind! The concept is that the family and friends each have the opportunity to hold the rings and pray over them or offer a wish, hope or dream for the couple’s future.
While the ceremony reflected a simple palette, Steph’s love for bold colors was clearly visible inside the Villa. The 20-foot wooden dining table served as the foundation for a garden of orange, purple, violet, red and yellow flowers nestled in wooden boxes and gold leafed vases and surrounded by gold mercury votives. The hydrangea were the perfect shade of purple. We couldn’t have planned it better.
The piece de resistance, in our opinion, was the white pumpkins, set atop plum satin napkins and gold beaded clear glass chargers. Each pumpkin was dual purpose, serving as a place card and brining a bit of fall to the table (after all, this was a Thanksgiving weekend wedding).
We mentioned that micro-weddings contain all the elements of a traditional large-scale wedding and this wedding was no different. From cake cutting, to the first dance as husband and wife, to favors and the most ingenious money tree I’ve ever seen, this wedding was rich on emotion.