The floral arrangements by Brims and Blooms, paired with the groom’s pop of color suits, brought life to the muted Goblin Valley, Utah desert backdrop. Dallin and Cienna Photography captured the intimate and powerful details of this elopement that is sure to influence couples looking to forgo the traditional wedding ceremony route.
This colorful and stylish Goblin Valley elopement demonstrates the importance of hiring talented wedding vendors. With trusted wedding professionals come magical stress-free celebrations—from beginning to end.
Planning a wedding, but not sure where to start? We’ve got you covered. Check out the ultimate wedding planning checklistto kick start your creative wedding planning—showing you all of the possibilities that exist for your big day.
There’s a saying “everything is bigger in Texas,” and Kimberly and Clint proved that to be true with their colorful Gage Hotel wedding in Marathon, Texas. The couple knew they wanted to incorporate their love for the desert into their special day, so when they came across the historic hotel, they knew it was the one. Their desert theme was apparent with a coral and sage color palette, Mexican blankets, margaritas, and succulents decorating the space.
I wore my hair in a fat fishtail braid, tied with a piece of my mother’s wedding dress, which was my “something old.” My Matron of Honor offered me her stunning diamond earrings, so that was my “something borrowed.” The chic, military-inspired hat I donned at the reception absolutely made the look. As for the hat’s custom details, I had a Dry Creek Turquoise thunderbird pendant that I found on a girl’s trip in Fredericksburg added–and it’s permanently mounted on the hat–and represented my “something blue.” There’s also leather cording and my mother’s wedding dress carefully twisted with horsehair & sage around the hat.
Choosing A Gage Hotel Wedding
About a year before the wedding, we went on what we are called “the West Texas tour,” with the Gage Hotel being the last venue on our expedition. We had seen photos of the Gage and had a brief conversation with them over the phone to get an idea of what it would cost to celebrate there. It was definitely not in our budget, but I thought we should check it out anyway. When we pulled up, we looked at each other and said, this is it, we have to make this happen. We were determined to make it happen, and we did!
A DIY Backdrop
At the ceremony, we flaunted a 12-foot handwoven macramé backdrop that was handcrafted and woven by my mother and me. It was a learning experience for the two of us–we had no idea what we were getting ourselves into–and an opportunity to plan and bond prior to the big day. All in all, it took us about 42 hours to construct. We watched countless hours of YouTube videos to learn how to tie all the knots and weave an exquisite masterpiece. The macramé now resides in our stairwell, and it’s a daily reminder that with patience and persistence, we can do anything we put our minds to.
A Parade Down The Streets of Marathon
One of the coolest and most memorable aspects of our wedding was the donkey processional from the ceremony site to the reception and cocktail hour. Unbeknownst to me, we had a police escort, and all traffic passing through town stopped for our mini parade. Our beautiful donkey named W.T. led the way to the party! In addition, our guitarist Nick strummed some fun Latin tunes on the march over while everyone held hands and danced with maracas.
Congratulations again to Kimberly and Clint on their colorful Gage Hotel wedding. We’re so thankful that Jadie Photography was there to capture their special day. To get started on planning your own dream desert affair, check out these southwestern color palettes!
Luscious greenery, DIY bouquets and boutonnieres, and a quaint backyard reception—we can’t think of a better COVID-conscious wedding than Stephanie and Stephen’s. Although it wasn’t their first choice of venue, this smaller celebration proved that shifting your original plans can be done beautifully. And with a backyard as luscious as this one, we don’t blame them for opting for this venue.
Not only were they utilizing an incredible venue, but this DIY couple literally made their own wedding dreams come true. From creating individual charcuterie boards to having a custom beer brewed, every detail of this wedding was unique and thoughtful. Stephen and Stephanie truly made their wedding day their own and had fun along the way. Thankfully, J.Olson Weddings captured every laugh and every detail of this COVID-conscious wedding. Get ready to see nature working its magic and get your Pinterest ready.
Stephanie and Stephen
Saint Paul, Minnesota, USA
Have Fun And Savor Important Details
You can have fun no matter where you are if you’re with your person! We feared the pandemic conditions would make our wedding less special and less fun, so we spent a lot of time on a few key details that were really important to both of us. We really wanted to have some of our best people around us, take photos by the Mississippi River, and have really great food for our guests. It made it easy to let go of the big wild ideas that weren’t as important, and we were able to have fun and savor those most important details.
Choosing A COVID-Conscious Wedding
Pre-pandemic, we’d picked a nearby wooded park with a lodge that had a great way of showcasing nature with some hiking trails and a small lake nearby. When we shelved our ‘big party’ and our venue along with it, some generous family members who live down the street from us offered up their backyard, and it seemed perfect! They have a gorgeous flower and vegetable garden, which provided a comfortable and COVID-safe way to still enjoy a little nature in our day without the stress of navigating the logistics of a typical venue. The proximity to our homemade it really easy to shuffle décor and food back and forth as well! And of course, living in Minnesota, the weather is not always cooperative, and we were lucky to have the foresight to rent a tent so we could escape the rain while enjoying our garden party celebration
A friend gave us a goofy idea to have wedding mad-lib letters to the couple for guests to fill out since social distancing was bumming us out. We were skeptical, but went with it, and made a copy for each guest and invited them to read their mad-libs aloud before official toasts. We were in stitches laughing at the silly things our family and friends came up with, and it warmed up the crowd for the best lady and dude of honor speeches from our siblings.
DIY Florals And Charcuterie Boards
There were a lot of DIYs that made our wedding magical—honestly, they were some of the best parts! We selected our own flowers from a floral market and picked some wild sweet fern to hand-tie our own bouquets and boutonnieres, in addition to table arrangements. We found a great Esty shop—Leaf Décor—that makes forest-themed art that we used for table escort cards along with some leaf clippings from local trees that Stephen’s dad snipped the day before our wedding. Plus, we asked around for family members to collect enough wooden cutting boards to make individual charcuterie boards, which were assembled with top-notch wild venison salami.
Handmade Cakes And Custom Brews
A close friend bakes cakes on the side. So, we asked her to create a custom wedding cake with our favorite flavors—lemon, blueberry, and rosemary. It was gorgeous and delicious. We also had a family member who brews beer make a custom brew for our wedding. It was a Maple Marzen called “The Perfect PH”, which was made with maple syrup we harvested and produced on some family property.