The wedding that I am featuring today was photographed by Diana Rush Photography, and is proof that a real couple, working within a realistic budget, really can have a wedding that's just as personal and unique as it is beautiful and stylish. Michael and Lauren are originally from Southern California, and have a shared admiration for the outdoors and the rustic Southern lifestyle. When it came time to select their wedding venue, they decided that they wanted to venture away from the California coast and find a location that wouldn't be too far for family and friends to travel, but would also reflect their love of the country. They ended up finding the perfect lakeside location at Lake Oak Meadows, a lush, lakeside estate nestled between the hills and vineyards of Temecula wine country.
The bride handled many of the wedding details herself, including the wedding invitations, wooden signs, time capsule guest book, seating cards, table numbers, the ring bearer pillow and his adorable red bow tie and the flower girl's bucket. One of her friends made all of the bridesmaids dresses herself using a soft and simple yellow cotton fabric, which matched the dozens and dozens of fresh daisies (my all-time favorite flower!) that Lauren chose to decorate the ceremony and reception areas. Daisy pomanders lined the ceremony aisle, while the bride carried a bouquet of daisies down the aisle, and each of the couple's 150 guests each received a small bunch of daisies as wedding favors.
Lauren and Michael spent their wedding weekend at a beautiful house in Temecula with their entire bridal party. On the big day, the boys cleared out of the house early so that the ladies could get ready, and just before the afternoon ceremony was set to begin, Lauren took some alone time to think about the day to come. "As I was thinking about the importance of the day, I became overwhelmed with God's grace. That like God, Michael knew me so well, knew all my imperfections and loved me anyway. I couldn't stop thinking about how lucky I was that the best man I know was waiting for me to marry him," said Lauren.
Lauren's father walked her down the aisle, which unfortunately included "...about a thousand stairs (talk about nerve-wracking), and the rest is history," said the bride. "Michael was looking at me the way I always hoped." The couple later walked out to Dolly Parton's "He's Gonna Marry Me" and went right on dancing through the night under the stars.
Since the wedding, Michael and Lauren have followed their dreams south to Tennessee, where they live with their dog, Tenne. It's also worth mentioning that Lauren has an adorable shop on Etsy called Elle Rose Design, which is filled with sweet, homemade decor items that reflect the same country style of her wedding. Great stuff for Fall, too!
Lastly, I asked Lauren if she had any advice for other brides out there planning their weddings... "Our wedding was absolutely 'us.' From the handmade invitation, to the Dolly Parton exit, to the barbecue and sweet potato fries served. I had a vision of how I wanted everything to be, and doing it all "DIY" is what put the perfect touch on every area of the wedding. Get inspired and get a vision and then go with it!"
DIY Wine Country Wedding - Vendors & Credits
Photographer: Diana Rush Photography
Caterer: Temecula Gourmet Foods
Floral Designer: Wineberry Hill Designs
Ceremony and Reception Venue: Lake Oak Meadows
Dress Designer: Mori Lee
DJ: Good Time DJs
Bride's Shoes: Seychelles Footwear & Corral Boots
Bakery: Truly Madly Sweetly Bake Shop