Love At First Sight: Dez and Taylor’s American River Resort Wedding

To believe in the power of love at first sight is one thing, but to trust it enough to propose to someone after knowing them for just six weeks is something completely different. The probabilities of meeting that person might not be high, but it’s exactly what happened to Dez and Taylor - and their love is proof that it’s real. After convincing Taylor that he was serious about his proposal (and brushing off the response from a child passing by who told him that he shouldn’t ask Taylor to be his wife - not the answer he planned on getting), the couple opted to elope, using their day at the American River Resort in Coloma, California as a chance to celebrate with friends and family.

In lieu of the traditional way most couples do wedding ceremonies, Dez and Taylor went the laid-back route. Their wedding ceremony, much more of a celebration than a huge event, was super cozy and joyful. The American River Resort proved to be the perfect scenic site for the down-to-earth, beach-loving couple - capturing incredible pictures was easy. Not only was the fall weather perfect, but the two couldn’t stop making each other laugh - a photographer’s dream.

From the sunset forest ceremony that overlooked the American River to toasts that made everyone laugh, each moment felt meant-to-be and special. To match the fun-loving vibe, the dessert assortment was out of this world, including doughnuts, s’mores and, of course, cake. The couple and their small group of guests (about 50 in total) danced the night away under the stars.

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Sam and Chase’s Sweet Emerald Bay Elopement

As Sam made her way up the trail at Emerald Bay, accompanied by her father and grandfather, it was clear how special this sweet and intimate ceremony would be. Chase, seeing his bride for the first time in her beautifully traditional gown complete with a sweeping skirt and short veil, teared up as she made her way towards him.

The couple, from Las Vegas, kept the entire day simple and without any unnecessary fuss. The focus of the day was truly a celebration of their love - and the love they have for their three kids.

Accompanied by just a small group of family members and their closest friends, who journeyed to the ceremony site together by bus, Sam and Chase were a delight to work with. Their children, who loved playing with the giant Tahoe pine cones, were adorable. And, thanks to the late summer light, every shot we took turned out magical.

The day was proof that the simplest of wedding days really are some of the most special, especially when they are set to a stunning backdrop like Emerald Bay.

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Shelly and Cody; When Two Outdoorsy, Life of the Party People Get Married…

Let’s just say, it’s as much fun as you’d expect it to be. Cody and Shelly met in Squaw Valley seven years ago and, although they’ve been all over the country since then, decided that there was no better place for them to tie the know than at the Beach Retreat & Lodge in South Lake Tahoe. Both extremely outdoorsy with an affinity for winter sports, the couple’s energy radiated from the first look to the final song.

We were intoxicated from the get-go (and we hadn’t even had one sip!)

Shelly’s stunning strapless, lacy gown was the type of classic boho-chic look you’d expect from someone who also spent most of the day barefoot and bedazzled in some of the most spectacular foot jewelry we’ve ever seen. The couple, whose friends actually performed the ceremony, infused every detail of their day with a fun, laid back, party-like vibe, which was apparent from the pyramid the bridesmaids and bride performed on the beach to the photo booth stocked with props from Burning Man.

The neutral colors chosen for the entire wedding party made it easy for the brilliant ocean blues to stand out in every shot. Other simple details, like the tree trunk-inspired cake, complete with the S + C scrawled out inside of a hand drawn heart, made sure that the day was special without feeling too precious or over-the-top.

The only thing over-the-top was just how much we enjoyed spending the day with Cody, Shelly, and their wonderful selection of family and friends.

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Photography: VILD Photography | Venue: Beach Retreat & Lodge at Tahoe | Officiant: Friends
 |  Dress: Swoon | Catering: Beach Retreat & Lodge at Tahoe

Amy and Jake’s Majestic Waters Lakefront Wedding

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A two-location wedding shoot spanning the course of two days gave us the opportunity to capture the magic between this fun couple. Although Amy and Jake chose to have their ceremony at the private Majestic Waters Lakefront property in Tahoe to avoid crowds, they didn’t want to miss out on the opportunity to capture the stunning backdrop at Lake Tahoe’s Sand Harbor. Instantly drawn to their desire to highlight the beauty of the surrounding nature, we thoroughly enjoyed ourselves on this shoot.

The vibrant cobalt blue water and crashing waves put on a spectacular show for us at both the ceremony and day-after shoot. Because the couple chose both locations specifically for the views, we enjoyed how both the bridal party and groomsmen chose natural colors that captured so beautifully on film. Other nature-inspired touches, like the bride’s delicate crown of genres and the wooden place settings, created a cohesive and simple theme.

Down-to-earth from start to finish, Amy and Jake’s wedding ceremony, reception, and day-after photo session felt like a breath of fresh air for everyone lucky enough to attend. Wonderfully intimate, the lobster feast enjoyed indoors at Majestic Waters was as delightful as it looks.

A true testament to the beauty of adventure, Amy and Jake’s fun personalities took them over the water-covered piers at Sand Harbor all the way to their awaiting flight - off to Costa Rica for the two for their honeymoon!

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Photography: VILD Photography | Venue: Tahoe Vista Vacation Rental | Officiant: Mountain High Weddings | Rentals: The Entertainer
| Flowers: Rosebud Floral Designs | Ceremony Musician: Ellen Flanagan  |  Catering: Eats Cooking Company