The Couple:  Erin Autry and Matt Montgomery

Wedding Date:  June 6, 2009

Photography by Emily Heizer Photography

Tell us a little about you and your beloved:  We met online in San Diego, after years of Internet dating (and hundreds of Internet dates) between the two of us.

During our courtship, Matt reluctantly taught me to become a weekend runner with him, and surprised me by proposing in the middle of a run on Saturday morning in Balboa Park. We still stop and kiss at the proposal spot every weekend.

What was the most amazing part of your day?  We felt that the exchange of our vows was a very private moment for the two of us. My dream was for us to walk out into the orchard and just get married. The day before the wedding, amidst the madness of setting up, we walked out, looked around and decided on a spot. It was such an intimate ceremony! Our ceremony included only immediate family and our maid of honor and best woman. My favorite part was that our families started humming here comes the bride as I hopped out of the golf cart with my dad.

What else would you like to share about your big day?  We tried to keep the reception casual, as we wanted to make sure people had fun celebrating our big day without a lot of fuss. We weren’t sure if the weather would be too hot, so we made sure to put on the wedding details insert in the invitation that shorts were definitely okay, and that women were encouraged to wear flats or wedges.

Dinner was served family style, beer and wine were both self serve, and we had a lounge area for people to relax during the dancing. We didn’t have wedding “colors” or specific flowers – I just ordered a bunch of flowers online and picked up some extras the morning of the wedding at the local farmers market. My sister-in-law graciously prepped the flowers and arranged them beautifully in old mason jars found around the ranch. It was also amazing to be able to show our friends and Matt’s family where I grew up (my mother’s parents have lived in Winters for the past 100 years).

Ceremony Site:  Private Family Orchard in Winters, CA

Reception Venue:  Private Family Barn in Winters, CA

Photographer:  Emily Heizer Photography

 Caterer:  Buckhorn Catering

Cake:  Buckhorn Catering

Flowers:  California Organic Flowers and Davis Farmers Market for centerpiece flowers (purchased the morning of the wedding), Dixon Florist for the ceremony arch.

Favors:  Fresh Fruit (doubling as the centerpieces) from Double R Orchards in Winters, with hand stamped paper bags by the bride and groom.

Wedding Dress:  Isis Bridal Boutique in San Diego

Bridesmaid Dresses:  No bridesmaids, one maid of honor (Calypso dress) and one best woman (White House Black Market off white suit)

Hair:  Denise Ealy, Tops Salon in San Diego

Makeup:  Anais Foley Kennedy

Invitations:  Lulu Paper

DJ/Entertainment/Band:  Big Fun DJ

Honeymoon location:  Tokyo and Kyoto (pre-wedding), Big Sur (post-wedding)

Any other of your wedding vendor(s) you’d like to call out?  Zephyr Tents did the lighting, farm tables, and tents; Classic Party Rentals did linens and lounge furniture (Sacramento location); Royal Restrooms provided the bathrooms that everyone still talks about; the Hallmark Inn in Davis was very gracious in distributing our out-of-town bags to our guests.

First Dance Song:  “Try Me” by James Brown

Any advice you’d give to our readers who are planning their weddings right now?  The best advice I received was to stop and take a minute to just sit there and watch the wedding happen. Also many of the great personal details that made our event unique (walnut and twine place cards, cool signs, fruit centerpieces) would not have happened without lots of help from family and friends – so make sure and ask them!

Anything that you would have done differently if you were given the chance?  I was stressed the morning of the wedding. Looking back, I wish I had hired a day-of coordinator to run the last minute set-up items. We also didn’t hire the bus for long enough to take the out of town guests back to the hotel, so the dancing got cut a little short.

Photos courtesy of Emily Heizer Photography

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