When COVID changed the direction of our marriage journey, we found ourselves with a quiet elopement in a gorgeous garden setting, surrounded by succulents and palm trees. It was such a soft, quiet setting to take our vows with just our parents and witnesses present. We were engaged after climbing Half Dome, have traveled the world together, and are now on our next adventure navigating through starting life together during a pandemic! Our wedding had travel-themed elements like suitcases, the coordinates of our engagement on our wedding cake, and maps and globes.
Florals were a mix of peonies, wildflowers, and lots of greenery like ferns, cacti, and succulents! Our wedding was certainly influenced by the natural elements.
Our postponed wedding celebration will include a live band, Hungarian folk dancing troop, and postcards as table names of the places we’ve traveled to. For our COVID elopement, our favorite part was a quiet and intimate cake cutting and toasts with our family smiling around us.
Dennis wore a dark grey suit with small black edge detailing from Men’s Warehouse and leather shoes. His ring was from Tiffany & Co. Karen’s wedding dress by Essence of Australia had a structured satin top with a tiered chiffon horsehair trimmed skirt. Her hair was done by Magan Gomez from Brushed Studio. She did her own makeup. Her engagement and wedding ring were from a local company in Fremont called Son of a Jeweler and Dennis and Karen designed her bezel set engagement ring together.
Dennis and Karen met on the app Coffee Meets Bagel. They spent one of their first dates together in Disneyland, and the rest is history! Throughout their relationship they’ve traveled all over the US and the world. They love national parks, especially Yosemite. When Dennis snagged a lottery ticket to climb Half Dome, something Karen had always wanted to do, he realized it would be the perfect adventure to end in a proposal. After a grueling hike, she was eager to return down the mountain and have a nice dinner and wine. Little did she know, Dennis was getting down on one knee. It was an unexpected and special memory and the hike back down certainly went faster with a ring on her finger.
The most special part of the wedding day was the recitation of vows. We wrote our own which we shared with one another during a quick day trip to Yosemite, and at the ceremony recited the traditional vows. When Dennis started to choke up, Karen couldn’t help but cry.
Wedding Planning Advice: For a large wedding, have a day of coordinator! For an elopement, have a helpful family member. Also, don’t spend more than your budget allows, because your wedding is just 1 day of the rest of your life and the little details do not matter as much as the love you and your partner have. Be flexible! Things will happen, and it will still be a wonderful memory. Finally, arguably the most important part is the photos you will receive… those last forever.