Real Weddings: An Intimate Outdoor Wedding

Julie and Rob invited 45 of their closest friends and family to their elegant wedding in Sedona, Arizona.


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detail of napkin
Melissa Jill Photography
1/21
The Little Details

    About the Couple: With their family scattered on the East and West Coast, Julie and Rob invited their friends and family to the beautiful L'Auberge resort nestled in the red rocks of Sedona, Arizona.

    Julie wanted to add a touch of blue to their reception by placing a small blue flower on the napkins. Julie bought the flowers the day before and kept them in the fridge. When she went to set up the tables the morning of her wedding, the flowers were frozen and ruined. But Julie got creative and found these berries that were the perfect shade of blue in some bushes close to the resort. She rounded up help from her guests and they had a blast getting the tables just perfect, berries and all.

2/21
Personal Touch

    Rob and Julie rented the Creek House at the L'Auberge resort to double as the meeting a spot for their guests throughout the wedding activities. Julie placed jars with personalized M&M's with their names and wedding date around the house for them to enjoy.

3/21
Wedding Day Bliss

    On the morning of the wedding, Julie, Rob, and their guests took a hike to the famed Cathedral Rock in Sedona. Rob sported his groom hat in anticipation of their big I dos.

4/21
Finishing Touches

    After the morning hike, Julie headed to the salon to get her hair and makeup done. She returned to the resort to put the finishing touches on her wedding day look.

5/21
Great Buy

    After buying a really "bridey" dress for her big day, Julie just wasn't sure about it. She even bought a second dress to change into for the reception. While she was picking up her second dress from alterations, she saw this beautiful beaded gown in the designer section of the Nordstrom Rack. She instantly fell in love with its classic and elegant look. It was definitely the perfect dress to walk down the aisle.

6/21
Two Sets of Shoes

    Two dresses means two pair of wedding shoes. Julie changed into a dark blue cocktail dress during their reception.

    Bride's Tip: If you don't want to haul around your bridal gown for your entire reception, considering changing into a shorter cocktail dress.

7/21
Hand-Painted Invitations

    Julie loves to paint in watercolors so she designed this beautiful painting of Sedona's red rock formation to feature on their invitation.

    Get the Look: If you have an artistic touch, personalize your wedding with your own artwork. Your guests will love it.

8/21
Custom Water Bottles

    Julie also put her artwork on these custom-made water bottles. She copied the painting onto labels then attached them to the bottle. Rob and Julie kept these bottles out for their guests in the Creek House and at the ceremony location to beat the summer Arizona heat.

    Get the Look: Transform ordinary bottles of water into one-of-a-kind creation with the help of labels and your own artwork.

9/21
DIY Ceremony Decor

    Julie created her own ceremony decor by hanging these small tins filled with daises on the end of each chair lining the aisle, giving off a country-causal vibe. She chose daisies because they matched her color scheme and were easy to find at a local florist.

    Budget Saver: Save big bucks buy creating your own custom flower arrangements for your wedding. Hire a florist for tougher arrangements like your bouquet and boutonnieres.

10/21
Pretty Harp

    Julie walked down the aisle to a version of Pachelbel's Canon in D played by harpist Oman Ken.

11/21
A Touch of Blue

    Rob wore a white rose boutonniere with a small hydrangea that added a touch of blue to incorporate their color scheme.

12/21
Pretty Spot

    Rob and Julie's ceremony took place next to the pretty Oak Creek. A giant oak tree was the perfect canopy for their I dos.

13/21
Simple Bouquet

    Julie wanted a very simple but fragrant bouquet. Her florist did a mix of white roses, blue hydrangea, and blue tweedia, to give her this classic look.

14/21
Kickin' Off Cocktails

    Julie and Rob's signature drink, the Russelltini, was a one-of-a-kind creation by the couple. They worked out the perfect mix of alcohol to get the perfect shade of blues for their guests to enjoy.

15/21
DIY Tables

    Although these tables look like they're a wedding planner's masterpiece, Julie actually did all the decor herself. She used the white linens from the resort then added a cream sheer overlay from fabric she picked out at Jo-Ann Fabrics. She also ordered white chair covers online and topped them off with sheer blue ties to incorporate her color scheme.

    Budget Saver: Save money by using the venue's tablecloths. If they just have solid white, dress it up with a strip of bright-colored fabric.

16/21
Easy Centerpieces

    To create their centerpieces, Julie used different sizes of square vases and mixed hydrangea, gardenias, and yellow roses. She surrounded the arrangements with blue votives she found at Pottery Barn.

17/21
The Perfect Ring

    Rob incorporated their favorite color -- blue -- into Julie's engagement ring by surrounding a center diamond with two sapphires. Julie then chose a sapphire wedding band with one diamond.

    Get the Look: Mixing diamonds and sapphire for wedding rings is all the craze. Don't be afraid to add a little color to your rings.

18/21
Delightful Cake

    Their cake was the talk of the reception; it was a mix of lemon and chocolate covered with a layer of fondant. To add a little detail to the cake, they tied gold ribbon around the bases and topped it with flowers.

19/21
Setting the Mood

    As the sun set, the votives, along with strung lights, created a pretty ambiance for the reception. Julie and Rob didn't have dancing after the reception; instead their guests joined them for a fun gathering in the Creek House for more celebrating.

    Bride's Tip: Make sure that you provide enough light for dinner. More lights in the tree would have been ideal for this location.

20/21
Vendor Guide

    Ceremony & Reception: L'Auberge de Sedona, Sedona Arizona; www.lauberge.com

    Photographer: Melissa Jill Photography; www.melissajill.com

    Cakes: Sedona Cake Couture, Sedona, Arizona; www.sedonacakes.com

    Personalizes M&Ms: www.mymms.com

    Chair Covers: www.chaircoversonline.com

    Flowers: Show Stoppers Flowers; www.eventsbyshowstoppers.com

    Music: Oman Ken; www.omankenmusic.com

    Table Decor: Julie created with supplies from Jo-Ann Fabrics, Cost Plus, and Pier One.

    Tux: Men's Wearhouse; www.menswearhouse.com

    Dress: Nordstrom; www.nordstrom.com

    Invitations: Hand-painted by Julie

    Hair and Makeup: Fangos Spa of Sedona

21/21
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