Real Weddings

Ranch Weddings: Lauren & Ben | Holman Ranch, CA

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From the Photographer:

Ben and Lauren dreamed of spending the most important day of their lives surrounded by family and friends in a beautiful but laidback California setting. Holman ranch was the first venue they visited, and once they saw the amazing historic location, they knew it also would be the last. The couple quickly decided on one of their mutual true loves– travel and adventure– to inspire the wedding invitations and décor.

A watercolor palette of blush, peach, coral, and sea spray blue set the color scheme and rustic, vintage touches tied everything together. It truly took a village to make this wedding to happen- Ben and Lauren DIY’ed almost any aspect they could get their hands on, and graciously, friends and family offered to lend their special talents to make the wedding as personal as possible! One of the guests noted, “it feels like Lauren and Ben Summer camp more than a wedding!” which is exactly how the couple wanted the experience to feel.

The entire bridal party and some close friends and family stayed in the beautiful bungalows the ranch all weekend, allowing everyone to relax and really take everything in. Yard games and coloring books (homemade by Ben and Lauren), mason jar cocktails (also homemade by Ben and Lauren for the favors, along with koozies), food truck catering (by Roli Roti), and a record-spinning DJ (Trevor from Santa Cruz DJ) sent the message that Ben and Lauren were ready to CELEBRATE their new lives together!The couple will never forget getting ready with the wedding party and their parents on the day of the wedding. Lauren, the bridesmaids, and her mother and cousin Grace enjoyed sipping coffee, helping bridesmaid Marie with the flowers, and tying menus in their robes (gift from the bride, monogrammed by a friend of the bride, along with state necklaces) while taking turns in the chair for hair (by Melissa Marie) and make-up (by the maid of honor, Noa). It was a really special moment to toast champagne while Lauren’s mother buttoned –up her Watters Wtoo dress and the bridemaids helped out with her something old (her mom’s wedding dress lace around her bouquet), something new (keshi pearl earrings and hairpiece from Nordstrom and Etsy), something borrowed (her father’s Milwaukee firefighter badge), and something blue (Kate Spade shoes).

Ben, the groomsmen, and the fathers were relieved to get in a few games of pool and open their map cufflinks and custom 6-pack holders (made by the groom) before the pomp and circumstance began.

The sun was shining and music was playing (live guitar and bass by Hitwaves Unplugged) when it came time for Ben and Lauren to officially say “I Do.” The flowergirls (tutus homemade by the bride) and ring bearer followed the bridesmaids (in Jcrew) and groomsmen (in Kenneth Cole) down the aisle without a hitch. One of the couple’s favorites parts of the ceremony was the ring warming ritual, in which all the guests passed Ben and Lauren’s new wedding rings along with a wish or blessing. It allowed them to take a deep breath, look out at all the guests, and soak in the moment. They also love looking down at their wedding rings and knowing that every wedding guest warmed it in their hands on their wedding day. A family friend of the bride, Gene, officiated the beautiful ceremony, which included a Time Capsule Unity Ceremony, and concluded with Ben and Lauren’s personal vows.

After the ceremony, the bridal party and family headed to the golden fields behind Holman to take portraits while the guests enjoyed a wine tasting, beer brewed by the couple and their friend Duncan, and signature cocktails representing the couples’ hometowns (San Francisco Pisco Punches and Wisconsin Old Fashioned’s). Dinner in the rose patio was followed by dancing in the carriage house- only interrupted briefly to watch the hometown Wisconsin Badgers beat Duke in the NCAA championship final four game! Guests are still talking about the Shoe Game played during the reception, in which the couple answered questions like “Who made the first move?” by holding up the person’s shoe accordingly. The party was going in full force until the very last song of the night- Journey’s “When the Lights Go Down in the City.”



Photographer:  Apollo Fotografie {Fine Art Wedding Photo & Video}

Cinema and Video:Apollo Fotografie//Reception Venue: Holman Ranch//Event Planner: Inspirations by Gina//Floral Designer:Lightly Gypsy LLC//Hair Stylist: Melissa Marie Hair//Other:Night and Day Productions//Caterer:Roli Roti Gourmet Rotisserie//DJ: Santa Cruz DJ. Co.//Submitted via Two Bright Lights



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