After a weekend of wine tasting in Northern California, these brides celebrated their nuptials with a family-focused al fresco dinner party.
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wedding couple portrait vineyard backdrop

After meeting at work in 2018, Emmicia and Jaime "became fast friends, and also each other's biggest challenger and supporter," says Emmicia. Their relationship deepened over the next few years, and in 2021, Jaime surprised Emmicia with a proposal during a birthday trip to Rosemary Beach in Florida. "We said we wanted to get engaged on a trip with just the two of us to celebrate before returning to friends and family," says Emmicia. "It was perfect."

The Nashville, Tenn.-based couple decided on Northern California for their 60-person destination wedding, screening several vineyards and venues before deciding on The Scion House at Robert Young Estate Winery in Geyserville for their April 30, 2022, ceremony. "We knew we wanted the weekend to feel like a progressive dinner party from Thursday to Saturday evening. It was important for our guests to be surrounded by the natural beauty of Sonoma, but also enjoy one of the best things the city has to offer—wine pairings," says Emmicia. "We [also] wanted the weekend's home base to have a small-town feel; we loved the idea of running into our guests around town during the day while they were out shopping or having lunch."

The couple chose a spring-infused floral palette heavy on hues of purple, peach, green, and pink, layering shades of each color into their stationery, table setting, wedding-day attire, and flower arrangements. Along with the "bright and whimsical" aesthetic, Emmicia and Jaime added plenty of personal touches: They asked their family and friends to walk them each down the aisle and to officiate the ceremony, engraved their rings with heirloom sentiments, incorporated a custom monogram into their paper suite, and changed into their favorite sneakers for the reception.

After celebrating with a family-style meal served outside, surrounded by lush vineyard views, the brides shared their first dance to "One and Only" by Adele. Their best advice to couples currently in the planning phase? "Focus on creating a vision and feeling for your guests and let everything else flow from there," says Jaime. "Don't lose yourselves."

pastel floral wedding invitations

Rainbow Brights

The pair worked with Mrs. Post to create a paper suite that highlighted two key elements: their custom crest and the vibrant hues of their wedding-day aesthetic. "We wanted invitations to really set the mood for the weekend, so I chose colors reflective of the palette across and progressively increased them with each item," says Emmicia. Bright green script, printed to the edge of the square save-the-date, was joined by pink, purple, and peach tones on the wedding invitation.

wedding welcome bags

In the Bag

Jaime and Emmicia welcomed their guests to the Golden State with personalized gift bags filled with local treats, like soap, flavored nuts, a wine tote with a map of Sonoma County, and rainbow Sugarfina gummy bears.

bride in flowy white dress vineyard portrait

Second Best

Emmicia's Studio Levana wedding dress wasn't her first choice for the ceremony: She planned to wear it for the rehearsal dinner (after modifying the sleeves and train). "When I tried on the dress at the boutique when it arrived, I was floored. I kept saying I wanted the day to feel whimsical and light and the dress perfectly embodied that," she says. "The dress immediately became the front runner and I still haven't even looked at the original dress I planned on wearing." On the advice of Nashville alterations professional Houri Barahimi, Emmicia chose to shorten the sleeves to a three-quarter length and redo the bodice for a more fitted silhouette.

While dress shopping at Brides by Young in Indianapolis—four hours away from home but, says Emmicia, "an A-plus experience"—a stylist recommended a vine-covered Toni Federici veil. "When she brought the veil out, it was perfect!" says Emmicia. "The sage-and-emerald vines and the peach blooms perfectly encapsulated what I knew I wanted for the wedding day."

wedding portrait vineyard

Going Green

Jaime chose a bespoke jacket in black Italian wool with an emerald jacquard texture from Stitch-It and Co., and mid-heel oxfords from The Office of Angela Scott. Both women—self-described "sneaker people"—swapped their ceremony shoes for sneakers during the reception: Jaime chose a black pair by Alexander McQueen and Emmicia opted for a tan-and-white set from Chanel.

couple portrait grassy field

Together at Last

After a morning full of activity—and nerves—the couple met for their first look before the ceremony. "We started our day at 6 a.m. and as a person who loves a rest, I was feeling quite rushed and a bit out of sorts," says Emmicia. "When Jaime and I did our first look, I immediately started crying because I finally felt the pressure and stress of the day melt away. She is my favorite person and seeing her is like instantly feeling at home and well-loved."

Emmicia's tears caused a welcome moment of humor for both women. "She looked absolutely gorgeous," says Jaime. "I had a giant smile on my face and she immediately started crying. I laughed, because she'd teased me during our entire engagement about how much I was going to cry!"

Both women carried sweet peas, roses, and ranunculus in their bouquets; the blooms in Emmicia's were arranged in an ombré gradient from peach to lavender, while Jaime chose a less structured, more organic arrangement.

gold wedding rings and flowers

Three of a Kind

Emmicia's custom engagement ring—a loose stone from Old World Diamonds set in gold—was accented by two diamond weddings bands from Barker Diamond; she also wears Jaime's mother's gold wedding band, which Emmicia used during the ceremony. "My mother's gold wedding band has an engraving from my father, who has also passed on, that reads, 'To Sue, Love Jim,'" says Jaime. "I engraved Emmicia's engagement ring to say, 'To Emmicia, Love Jaime,' as an homage."

outdoor wedding ceremony floral arch vineyard

View Master

Emmicia and Jaime chose The Scion House at Robert Young Estate Winery as their venue because of its stunning surroundings. "It was about the views," says Emmicia. "The family-owned space was small enough to feel intimate, because the almost 360 vineyard views made the property feel expansive. We were immediately sold when we took it all in."

florals by white outdoor wedding ceremony chairs

Pops of Color

Shades of the couples' color palette, including peach, lavender, yellow, pink, coral, and blue, filled the floral-lined aisle, designed by Wilder Flowers. "I knew I wanted the colors to feel bright and whimsical," says Emmicia.

wedding ceremony stone fountain with florals

Petal Power

In addition to filling the ends of the aisle with low floral arrangements to match the pathway to the altar, Emmicia and Jaime added flowers to a fountain to welcome guests to the space.

bride processing with father outdoor wedding ceremony

All in the Family

Emmicia's father walked her down the floral-accented aisle to the altar as their fellow loved ones took in the processional. "Our one vision for the weekend was to be surrounded by friends and family who supported us deeply," she says.

bride processing with niece and nephew outdoor wedding ceremony

Surrounded With Love

Jamie asked her niece and nephew, Briseis and Nathaniel, to escort her down the aisle. "Jaime has always been close with Nathaniel—they share a love of sports, especially basketball," says Emmicia. "Briseis was graduating from the School of the Art Institute of Chicago around the time of our wedding and we were so excited for her to join in the festivities. She has since relocated to Nashville and Jaime loves having a piece of her family a little closer."

paper cups of wedding ceremony flower petals

Saying "I Do"

Floral cones at the ceremony illustrated all the shades of the couples' color palette, including peach, lavender, yellow, pink, coral, and blue. The duo provided the bright flower petals for their family and friends to toss following the ceremony.

couple recessing outdoor ceremony

The New Mrs. and Mrs.

Before walking back up the aisle, Jaime and Emmicia incorporated a handfasting ceremony into their wedding program, which was officiated by a close friend.

wedding reception bar neon sign

One-of-a-Kind Accents

At the bar, a custom neon sign added a vivid pop of color, while other personalized touches were a nod to Jaime's mom. "She loved collecting cocktail stirrers and matchbooks," says Emmicia. "With the help of Mrs. Post, we designed cocktail stirrers and matchbooks with the crest from our wedding invitations as an ode to Jaime's mom, Sue Swartz, who passed away in 2016."

long outdoor wedding reception table vineyard

Dinner Al Fresco

Guests sat at a single long table outside, surrounded by the scenery that drew the brides to the venue.

pastel floral wedding reception centerpieces

Floral Affair

Low bowls filled with a rainbow of multi-hued flowers lined the center of the table, while pink glassware added an extra layer of texture and color.

pastel wedding reception place settings

Golden Touches

Jaime and Emmicia chose blue-rimmed chargers, gold-patterned plates, and gold flatware to complement their lace-embellished tablecloths. Simple menus previewed the meal provided by Oak Avenue Catering, while acrylic place cards sat atop pink linen napkins.

brides champagne tower on barrel

Sword Play

Jaime, a West Point graduate, used a saber from her alma mater to open the bottles of bubbly the couple used to pour a Champagne tower for their guests. "It is one of our fondest memories of the wedding," says Emmicia. "I was terrified she'd lose a finger, but it went off without a hitch!"

wedding cake on square table surrounded by flowers

Something Sweet

The newlyweds' planner, BYS Events + Design, worked with their florist to create a cake table display highlighted by the ceremony arch and backdrops. The florals framed the couple's Flour and Bloom three-tier confection, covered in sugar flowers, which offered guests their choice of flavors: olive oil and Meyer lemon, chocolate with caramel and toffee, or almond.

wedding couple kiss champagne toast portrait

A Toast to Forever

The newlyweds served four wines made by their venue alongside a dinner of tomato and burrata salad, Moroccan-spiced flat iron steak, roasted chicken, and vegetable pappardelle.

"We referred to the wedding weekend as our 'love island'—we'd both heard from friends over the years how quickly the weekend goes by and how you barely have time to connect with each other and those closest to you," says Emmicia. "We wanted the evening to feel like the final location of a progressive dinner party, where our guests have gotten to know each other over the extended weekend and were now having family-style dinner to celebrate our nuptials."

Sources

Photography, Anya Kernes Photography
Venue, Robert Young Winery
Event Planning, BYS Events + Design
Catering, Oak Avenue
Flowers, Wilder Flowers
Stationery, Mrs. Post
Cake, Flour and Bloom
Music, Lucky Devils Band
Rentals, BBJ La Tavola; Bright Event Rentals; Encore Event Rentals; Theoni Collection
Emmicia's Attire, Studio Levana
Emmicia's Accessories, Toni Federici veil; Chanel sneakers; Anthropologie earrings
Jaime's Attire, Stitch-It and Co.
Jaime's Shoes, The Office of Angela Scott (ceremony); Alexander McQueen (reception)
Hair and Makeup, Beauty on Set
Engagement Ring Diamond, Old World Diamonds
Guest Book, Copperfield's Books
Wedding Rings and Engagement Setting, Barker Diamond 

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