If you love soft curls and garden roses, if you love trailing vines and rustic elegance, then you are going to love this wedding at Mission Ranch from Christina McNeill, one of our Snippet & Ink Select vendors! Read on for all of the romantic details…

Did Jessica and Tom incorporate any traditions into their wedding? “We did!” says the bride. “I am Jewish and Tom was excited to honor that with smashing the glass to commemorate the end of our ceremony and the beginning of our marriage. My grandmother, who is 94 years old and flew up from Los Angeles was extremely proud to see that moment. We also had our chuppah designed by our florist and it came out so breathtakingly beautiful!”

“I loved staying on site at the Ranch along with my immediate family and some of our wedding party. Our honeymoon cottage was right across the road from our ceremony and reception; it just felt so intimate and not too hotel-ish.”

Dinner was held in the patio barn, complete with rustic barn windows and a copper-topped bar.



Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  Tom and I chose the Mission Ranch, Carmel as a destination wedding to honor both of our hometowns. I’m from San Diego and Tom is from Sonoma county. The view of the beach and the pastures represented us both and felt far enough to feel like a vacation but not too far to keep guests from attending.

What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  My favorite part of the day was when Tom and I read our personal vows to one another during our ceremony. I remember reading mine to Tom, I felt as if it was just he and I alone; at that moment no one else existed. It was eight years in the making and worth every tear! Another favorite moment was walking into our reception and seeing the ambience that was created by our florists. We were taken back by the candles, beautiful centerpieces and smiles that greeted us as our favorite songs played.

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The best advice was given to me by my girlfriend, Divya – she advised me to go slow during the ceremony and enjoy every minute of the love and happiness people are ready to share with you.

What advice do you have for other brides?  Remember it’s your partner that you are walking down the aisle to. Hold that thought in your mind when you make all your decisions. I did so when I tried on my wedding dress, as I tasted cakes, and picked out flowers. Nothing else matters except the love you have for one another, so don’t worry about expectations, just focus on what’s important: each other.

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  The day was absolutely beautiful weather and as my guests enjoyed cocktail hour, they were entertained with whale sightings out the coast of Los Lobos. Mission Ranch was a truly magical experience.

Photography: Christina McNeill / Venue: Mission Ranch in Carmel, California / Floral Designer: Fionna Floral / Dress: Amy Kuschel / Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Bridesmaid Dresses: Donna Morgan via Nordstrom / Suit: Hugo Boss / Stationery: Tiny Prints / DJ: SightNSound / Cake: Layers Sensational Cakes / Hair, Makeup: Katie Donaghy with It’s a Date

This post contains affiliate links.
Christina McNeill is a Snippet & Ink Select vendor.

  • Romantic Wedding at Mission Ranch, Carmel

    15 January 2014
  • 26 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    The lovely and talented Sarah Winward is back with some stunning January flowers for us – has she convinced you to have a winter wedding yet?! She’s one of our Select vendors, and as soon as you see these flowers you’ll understand why. I just love the neutral tones here, and I can just imagine these flowers in a room full of candlelight… Photos by Leo Patrone.

    From Sarah: “I love a neutral color palette in the months after the holidays. This one has some golden hued accents with the copper beech and mocca amaryllis to keep it from feeling too icy. The Nymph amaryllis has a double bloom, so it is full and works great as a focal flower. Anemone are a great seasonal attention grabbing flower, and are wonderful if you trying to tie some black or navy blue into your color palette.”

    From left: Smilax, Nymph Amaryllis, Mocca Amaryllis, Viburnum.

    From left: Astilbe, Astrantia, Anemone, Quicksand Roses, Copper Beech.


    Honey of a Thousand Flowers is a Snippet & Ink Select vendor.

    2 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Inspired Ideas, Seasonal Flowers

    822 Weddings sent over their photos of this beautiful Vermont wedding, and we’re such suckers for classic elegance, especially when it includes such lovely touches as a loose garden bouquet and a wedding cake adorned with blue hydrangea. Storied Events helped to bring the celebration to life.

    The whimsical stationery suite was designed by Mr. Boddington’s Studio.

    “We loved every moment but the few that stuck out were: walking down the aisle after the ceremony and exiting with all of our friends and family, driving with the best man (Michael’s younger brother) from the ceremony to the Inn, and the speeches during dinner that were better than we could have ever imagined or hoped for!”

    Great tip: “The jams we used as both a wedding favor and as place cards. We were initially going to try to make homemade jam, but realized it was too much work! We found a great vendor, Sidehill Farm, that customized the flavor, label, and gingham check fabric. We just added the name tags with each person’s table with twine.”



    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  We live in New York City, but the groom’s family has a vacation home in the Mad River Valley, where we often gather with friends and family. We wanted to share this beautiful valley and organic charm with all of our wedding guests.

    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  We didn’t want everything at our wedding to be too country or too Vermont. We wanted to try to find a a balance between this and also a classic wedding. The Sperry tent was also a huge party of the planning inspiration. We wanted to have a Sperry tent before we even found a venue! So, when searching for venues, we were primarily looking for a perfect spot for a Sperry tent!

    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  We included Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed, Something Blue. The father of the groom sang “Irish Eyes Are Smiling” and “Danny Boy,” which he also sang with the groom’s grandfather at his own wedding.

    What advice do you have for other brides?  It’s important to like and trust your vendors so you can let them do their jobs the weekend of the wedding. Don’t get caught up in directing or micromanaging; they won’t let you down. It’s hard to let go when you have put so much time into the planning leading up to the wedding day, but you will enjoy yourself so much more if you just trust your vendors.

    Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  Find up-and-coming or less established but still talented, vendors. They will be willing to compromise on price or better yet, give you their very best work to get their name into the area or wedding industry. We preferred working with vendors who weren’t the default. Instead spend a few extra hours searching for smaller businesses/vendors. You will be pleasantly surprised. Also, everyone says this, but spend the bulk of your budget on the three things that guests notice the most. Drinks, music, and food. Let the venue speak for itself. Don’t over do it. Spend your money on your guests, and your guests will love your wedding!

    Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  The story of the day was that when the last song was played at the end of the evening, there wasn’t a single guest NOT on the dance floor. Do encores for wedding bands actually happen? It did!

    Photographer: 822 Weddings / Venue: Beaver Pond Farm Inn in Warren, Vermont / Event Planner: Storied Events / Officiant: Rev. Susan McKnight / Dress: Christos / Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Veil: Amsale / Blazer, Shirt, Pants: Brooks Brothers / Shoes: Alden / Tie: Salvatore Ferragamo / Embroidery: Monograms by Emily / Watch: Frederique Constant / Bridesmaid dresses: LulaKate / Stationery: Mr. Boddington’s Studio / Floral Designer: Erin Ostreicher Designs / Tent: Sperry Tents / Music: The Sultans of Swing / Catering: Wooden Spoon Catering / Cake: Sweet Simone’s / Ice Cream: Scout’s Honor / Bar Service: Fluid Bar Service / Linens: The Linen Shop / Bathrooms: M&S Septic / Transportation: Mountain Transit / Hair, Make up: Ria St Pierre of Hair Creations / Calligraphy: Calligraphy by Michelle / Jam: Sidehill Farm
  • Classic Wedding at Beaver Pond Farm Inn

    14 January 2014
  • 5 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    Lora Kelley, one of our lovely Snippet & Ink Select vendors, is back with another lovely updo tutorial, this one a simple twisted bun. I’m totally hairdo-challenged, but I think even I could manage this one! Photos by Select vendor, Eric Kelley.

    curling iron (if needed to create loose curls)
    texturizing spray (Bumble and Bumble Surf Spray or Redken Hot Sets 22 Thermal Setting Mist would work)
    sectioning clips
    bobby pins
    finishing spray (Lora prefers Fekkai Sheer Hold Spray)


    What do you think? Something to try for your engagement party or rehearsal dinner – or even your wedding day if you’re going to DIY hair and makeup?!

    Lora’s last tip? “When trying a new hairdo, I always start with tidy, happy makeup. It makes everything look better when you’re finished.”

    Hair, Makeup: Lora Kelley / Photography: Eric Kelley

    This post contains affiliate links. 
    Lora Kelley and Eric Kelley are Snippet & Ink Select vendors.

    2 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: DIY

    Want something different from the dinner-and-dancing wedding that everyone seems to favor these days? Take a page from Rebecca and Matt’s book: they wanted their wedding to feel like an intimate, relaxed dinner party, and I’d say they pulled it off marvelously. Lovely photos by Gary Ashley.

    Says Rebecca: “We had been to the Blue Hill restaurant in the city and were drawn to the idea of a more rustic experience at Stone Barns. We love their mission and the amazing food. The setting is really magical with all of the animals and crops that are housed on the farm. I loved that the Hay Loft felt like a barn but was more refined.”

    “I was inspired by images of wild flowers and outdoor events,” Rebecca says. “Luckily my florist was able to translate my words of inspiration into a better reality than I had even pictured.”



    What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  Matt gave a really beautiful toast to our families and me before dinner. Because our ceremony had been so small, it was really special to hear him say such heartfelt and beautiful words in that setting.

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  To just relax and enjoy it and try not to get too caught up in all of the details. Also to stop worrying about the weather.

    What advice do you have for other brides?  Try to have an event that speaks to who you are as a person: don’t feel like you have to do any one thing because that’s what “people do” or it is traditional. Everyone is coming because they love and support you and want to celebrate with you – they will have a wonderful time regardless.

    Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  We were lucky because my mom is incredibly organized and did a lot of the legwork on the planning for the wedding so we didn’t have to hire a wedding planner. Other than that, we kept our vendors limited and were lucky that they all worked out so well.

    Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  Neither Matt nor I were that interested in an overly traditional, formal wedding. We really wanted the event to be intimate and relaxed. We intentionally kept our invite list very small and asked that even our parents’ invites were people that both of us knew. We had only immediate family at the ceremony and decided against bridesmaids or groomsmen. Because of that it felt like a really nice party and gave us the opportunity to celebrate with all of the people that we love, which was our main goal. It helped that the venue and the food were also wonderful.

    Photographer: Gary Ashley, The Wedding Artists Collective / Venue, Catering, Cake, Rentals: Blue Hill at Stone Barns in Pocantico Hills, New York / Floral Design: Taylor Patterson, Fox Fodder Farm / Dress: Jil Sander / Shoes: Alaïa / Bracelet: Cartier / Groom’s Suit: Dior Homme / Shirt: Armani Collezioni / Tie: Charvet / Shoes: Prada / Music: Karlus Trapp Band

    This post contains affiliate links.

  • Rustic Wedding at Blue Hill, Stone Barns

    13 January 2014
  • 3 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings