Elegant Red Barn Wedding
Ella & Jon
- Wedding Styling/Staging and rental décor: Simple Country Weddings
- Wedding planner: Maryssa Stovall with Hannah Smith Events
- DJ/Band: The Rolling Heads
- Caterer: Elle’s Catering
- Bakery/desserts: Elle’s Catering
- Bartender: Elle’s Catering
- Photographer: Sandra Mikalauskas with White Ivory Photography
- Videographer: Ian Powell with Ian Powell Films
- Venue: Red Barn Ranch in Hopland, California
- Shuttle/transportation: BusBank
- Florist: Dragonfly Floral
- Photo Booth: Ready, Steady, Pose
- Rabbi: Barry Tuchman
How did you meet? The first time I met Ella, I was still living in the UK and was in Sacramento for work, visiting another company. This happened to be Ella’s first day of her new job. The CEO and I walked into a conference room to meet and Ella was already in there filling out her new employee paperwork. My company in the UK was working closely with Ella’s company here in the US, so we ended up working closely together for a year, even though I was away. When I was offered a job at Ella’s company in the US, I decided to leave rainy England for sunny California and ended up being Ella’s boss. We continued to work together for several months as friends, but when Ella decided to leave for medical school, our relationship blossomed.
Where was your first date? Our first date was a wine tasting trip to Sonoma.
Where did you get engaged? Jon told me I had to get up at 4 A.M. because we were going to go on a trip out of town. I was curious as to why he would make me get up at such an ungodly hour knowing how much I appreciate sleep (and how scary I can be without it). He told me to wear comfortable clothes, so I assumed we were going on some sort of early morning hike. We arrived in Santa Rosa just as the sun was rising and got on a bus with a group of people, and that is when he told me we were going to go on a hot air balloon ride (something I had always wanted to try). I was a bit surprised he had chosen to do this considering his fear of heights, but I was excited. When we got to the field, the hot air balloons were being prepped and filled and I noticed there was one big balloon for the group and a smaller one for just the two of us. We got into the hot air balloon and took off. The views of the valley were breathtaking. And then Jon, out of nowhere, got down on one knee and asked me if I would marry him. Of course I said yes.
What was you first impression of each other? Ella: I thought Jon was going to be a smooth-talking player because of his English accent (I was picturing the Hugh Grant type), but he was not like that at all! My first impression of Jon was that he was extremely intelligent and hardworking. Jon: I thought Ella was friendly, funny, and a thoughtful person.
When did you start planning your special event? We started really planning our event in Spring 2017.
What was the most fun detail in planning your wedding? We really enjoyed creating blind taste tests of all of the wine for each other and deciding on just the right wines.
How did you choose your style/theme? Since we were getting married in wine country, we decided to go for a more rustic look. We were shooting wine barrel country, as opposed to wheel barrel country.
What was the most difficult detail to agree on? We surprisingly agreed on everything (or Jon just didn’t care, so I got to choose).
What was the most unique detail about your ceremony? Reception? We had a semi-Jewish wedding with the most hilarious rabbi you could imagine. Both sets of our parents were up with us under the canopy; it was a very intimate and special moment. We hired a live band for our wedding reception and they entertained our guests with amazing music.
What personal touches did you include in your ceremony? Reception? We made our own canopy for the ceremony and bought and stained the wood ourselves. For the reception, we bought all of our own linens from a special company because we wanted a more textured and rustic look.
What was the inspiration behind your flowers? A lot of perusing through Pinterest! We loved the more muted tones and thought they would pair well with the tan colors we had chosen.
How did you choose your wedding colors? We are both into more neutral, earthy tones, so we thought tan would be a perfect base color and decided to dress it up with small pops of color, like blush pink, butter yellow, and green. Everything kind of came together from there.
Did your pet play a role in your wedding? Unfortunately, we don’t have any pets, but we’re planning on getting a puppy soon!
What was the inspiration for the dress you chose? Who is the designer of your gown? My dress was designed by Casablanca and was style 1975. I wanted something that looked somewhat vintage. I wanted something more champagne than white, with lace, and buttons.
In one paragraph, please describe your wedding day. Our wedding day was very spontaneous and full of surprises. We were thankful for the day of sunshine we got on our wedding day, after having had two previous days of rain. We had great family and friends present. The band and music was amazing. The flowers looked beautiful and all of the details and furniture from Simple Country Weddings really set our wedding apart.
How did your wedding reflect the dream wedding you had as a child? Jon and I were never really the types of people who had even dreamed of getting married or really thought about it before, so our wedding ideas sort of just came together organically as we went along.
If you could go back and change one thing about your wedding day, what would that be? We would have hired a different caterer.
How did you pick your first dance song? What song was it? Our first dance song was “Magnet and Steel” by Walter Egan and Stevie Nicks. We had a lot of throwback music from the 70’s, 80’s, and 90’s, and we both thought this song was really cute and light-spirited.
What was the funniest OOPS moment of your wedding day? Jon’s mother passed out during our ceremony and ambulances, a firetruck, and a helicopter were called in. It took about 45 minutes for her to come to, but everything was okay in the end and she rejoined us for the ceremony.