When asked if I will travel to photograph a wedding, my answer is pretty much always a very emphatic YES. Especially when the person asking is also a branding client of mine who makes the BEST bags and purses. So, yes, when Laura asked if I would be willing to photograph her and Jim’s elopement in Colorado I did not hesitate to say, “Hell yeah!”. Hearing the words “Colorado elopement” typically conjures images of tall, snow-peaked mountains, but the couple selected Palisade, Colorado for their elopement, a beautiful desert landscape surrounded by mesas and cliffs. Though it was a hot, sunny, summer day, Laura and Jim’s elopement in Colorado ended with the most perfect sunset!
Laura and Jim’s wedding day began at their hotel in Grand Junction. They traveled to Colorado early in the week to spend time in the area and relax with their two best friends who joined them. While Laura and her Matron-of-Honor were at a local salon for hair & make-up, Jim and his Best Man enjoyed lunch and a drink at the hotel bar. Each partner then got ready separately, each room filled with excited anticipation to see each other and say their vows. Once dressed, they took different cars to their beautiful winery venue in nearby Palisade, wanting to share their first look as Laura walked down the aisle.
Laura and Jim’s wedding ceremony took place in the rose garden at Varaison Vineyards and Winery in Palisade, Colorado. At the center of the garden was a wooden gazebo and behind it were the beautiful cliffs and mesas of the southwestern Colorado desert. The flowers were in full bloom, and the gazebo provided wonderful shade from the summer sun beating down on the garden. Laura and Jim exchanged vows and rings, while their friends served as their witnesses and provided beautiful, sentimental readings.
After sharing their first kiss as newlyweds, the couple walked through the garden together, laughing and celebrating their new marriage. The marriage license may or may not have been left back at the hotel in Grand Junction (it was), so Jim disappeared for a bit to retrieve it while Laura got to be her gorgeous, sassy self in the garden for some photos! Upon Jim’s return, their marriage was legal, and the group of four spent time together enjoying the scenery and posing for photos.
After their ceremony and a sparkling wine toast, Laura and Jim had a private, intimate dinner planned for the four of them (and their camera-wielding fifth wheel who loves food and appreciated and enjoyed the crap out of this meal). Their multi-course dinner was prepared specially for them and complete with Varaison’s delicious Old World-style wine pairings served in the winery’s historic Victorian dining room. Laura and Jim spent the evening eating, drinking, and celebrating together (while also learning about wine with Varaison’s husband and wife owners) but absolutely had to take a mid-meal break to capture the stunning sunset in the rose garden.
After the sun had set and dessert was savored, our group made the trip back to Grand Junction for a nightcap at the hotel’s bar, ending an absolutely beautiful and perfect elopement in Colorado!
Wedding Vendor Dream Team:
Venue: Varaison Vineyards & Winery
Hair & Make-up:
Catering: Varaison Vineyards & Winery
Photography: Kelly Cook
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