A Lake Almanor Destination Wedding on a Family Property
When Courtney and Chris were looking for the Lake Almanor wedding venue for their rustic barn wedding, there weren't a lot of options near their Newport Beach-area home. Luckily, one of Courtney's family members owned a barn on several acres near Chester, California. It would turn out to be the perfect spot for their Lake Almanor destination wedding.
This is the view from my room the morning of the wedding. Just thought I'd throw this in here 😉
Getting Ready in the Cabin
Courtney chose to get ready in a nearby cabin with her friends and bridesmaids.
There's one thing that makeup artists and photographers have in common: window light!
Courtney chose a pair of unreal Christian Louboutin shoes for her Lake Almanor destination wedding, and her Vera Wang gown was gorgeous, too!
It takes a village to put on Courtney's stunning Vera Wang gown.
Courtney takes one last look in the mirror before heading to the barn for the ceremony.
Courtney's mother is overcome with emotion upon seeing her daughter in her dress. It's moments like this that I live for!
The Rustic Barn Wedding
The wedding ceremony was held outdoors adjacent to the family barn. Chris and Courtney were married underneath an arch made of pine logs, willow branches and flowers in vases hung with white ribbon.
Like the famous scene from Reservoir Dogs, Chris and his groomsmen strut towards the ceremony.
The arch made of pine logs, willow and mason jars with flowers is the perfect focal point for a rustic barn wedding!
On a hot day like this one, iced tea and lemonade are a great idea! Nearly every flower in this wedding rests in mason jars, just like these gorgeous flowers lining the aisle.
Are these flower girls and ring bearer the cutest or what?
Courtney arrived to her wedding in style, riding with her father in an early 1920's car.
As Courtney and her father walk down the aisle, the officiant comforts Chris with a gentle hand to his shoulder.
This barn has been in Courtney's family for many generations. Therefore, it was only natural for her wedding to take place at such a sentimental venue.
I love getting little moments like this!
Chris and Courtney sealing the deal on their rustic barn wedding!
There are many reasons why I track the bride and groom as they walk down the aisle. Above all, photos like this are why. Courtney's expression and gesture make this one of my favorite photos ever.
In addition, I can get more unexpected photos like this one of the flower girls and ring bearer being the first to congratulate the newlyweds.
Bride and Groom Photos at Lake Almanor
Chris and Courtney's rustic barn wedding features a ton of amazing details. For instance, this vintage Airstream trailer near the lake is a wonderful touch!
Chris and Courtney's wardrobe perfectly matches their rustic wedding! Chris wears a tan suit with a slim gray tie, and Courtney wears a gorgeous strapless Vera Wang gown.
Ah, the flowers! Where do I begin? First, let me say the florist, Paul Fenner, is an absolute genius! The arrangements combine bold colors with subtle, neutral elements such as rosemary.
A quick walk behind the barn and we're in the middle of a golden pasture. When couples are still coming off the high of the ceremony, I like to keep the posing simple. For instance, a simple hug and smile is just perfect for moments like this.
When shooting bride and groom photos, I think it's important to incorporate big elements of the wedding. For example, the barn make the perfect balance to Chris and Courtney's big kiss.
But above all, it's about making romantic and classic images that my clients can cherish forever.
A bride's day is chaotic! Therefore, she needs all the help she can get. For instance, having one bridesmaid bustle your dress and another to hand-feed you is absolute perfection!
A quick kiss in the back of the vintage getaway car and it's off to the reception!
Rustic Barn Wedding Reception
As guests settle into cocktail hour, the barn awaits it's big reveal!
This wedding is full of amazing details! For example, this vintage pickup truck holding cheese and tomato appetizers.
More amazing details for the perfect rustic barn wedding! For instance, a large steel tub full of beers and sodas. In addition, a large wooden table with cupcakes and other desserts.
When a bride and groom have spent countless hours obsessing over every detail, it's important to capture the magic when they first see everything!
This transformation from a rundown old barn to a charming wedding venue is incredible!
Here are Chris and Courtney posing with the magicians behind this amazing Lake Almanor destination wedding! On the left is Katy Higgins, the wedding planner, and on the right is Paul Fenner, the florist.
A rustic barn wedding can inspire some really creative takes on traditional wedding details. For instance, table cards with outdoor themes and twig-shaped flatware!
Similarly, empty picture frames and rustic mason jars with flowers make the perfect details!
Even the entrance is a detail! The burlap draping make this the most magical of reception entrances I have ever seen!
Coverage of the bride and groom and details are important. Similarly, photos of cute flower girls and ring bearers goofing around are great, too!
Dinner and Dancing in the Barn
Reactions like this at a first dance are so wonderful. You can just see Courtney taking in everything.
Father-daughter dances don't have to be sob-fests! For example, I love when brides and fathers pick a song to sing to!
I always watch for the bride's reaction when the groom retrieves the garter belt! There are always some classic expressions!
There are plenty of ways to toss a garter belt, but the sky hook is always a reliable one!
Courtney tosses her bouquet into a crowd of single ladies, just as my second shooter's flash fires!
DJ Mark Moreno dropping beats that keep the dance floor full and popping!
When brides and grooms lead the charge on the dance floor, a crowd always follows.
As the night wears on, Courtney and some bridesmaids pull a bale of hay and stand on it in the middle of the dance floor! Soon enough, the microphone comes out for some karaoke!
The barn at dusk.
Looking for more destination wedding inspiration? Check out this fantastic destination wedding from the Central Coast!
Need to see another rustic-themed wedding? Check out this amazing Twin Peaks Ranch Ojai wedding!
Planning a destination wedding but feeling overwhelmed? Check out my Resources page for tons of helpful info. Also, fill out the form below to schedule a consultation!
This wedding was featured in an issue of Martha Stewart Weddings!
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