Earthy Outdoor Wedding at Valenzano Winery by Serena Star Photography

We love a good themed wedding, especially when it’s done oh-so right! This New Jersey al fresco wedding captured by CWM Vendor Guide member, Serena Star Photography is no exception. Jessica and Thomas kept all the details for their Alice-themed soiree subtle, romantic, and mixed with the perfect amount of DIY. They chose Valenzano Winery to host their ceremony and reception and kept the style of the florals whimsical in shades of cream, blush, and mauve, with a dusting of gold and mercury tones and lots of greenery. Join us as we fall down the rabbit hole and spend the afternoon swooning over all the pretty details this New Jersey wedding has to offer.

From Serena Star Photography…Jessica and I both have a super mutual love of Alice in Wonderland. In fact that’s how we originally ended up talking and how I knew I had to photograph this wedding as soon as we started talking about all the DIY details she was planning for her Alice themed wedding. When we met again during her boudoir session and I saw her Alice in wonderland tattoo, we ended up geeking out some more and I realized just how much more in common we were and how awesome she (and her mom) are! I met Thomas for the first time on the day of their wedding and you could truly see how in love they are immediately. It was such a beautiful and emotion filled day and their joy was everything a hopeless romantic wedding photographer could ask for. 

From the start of the day, with those incredible “Open me” Alice in wonderland invitations and all the greenery made me a kid in a candy store. All the bridesmaid dresses were shades of blush and mauve and all complimented each other in their mismatched state. Walking into Vintner’s pavilion at Valenzano Winery with Jessica’s vision felt like walking into a Pinterest board of gorgeous. It was lightly raining but not enough to make us have to run for cover. As soon as you arrived, there was ceramic tea pots and a white rabbit greeting you at the entrance sign. The ceremony was moved under the pavilion due to the rain, but the natural light and wood tones in the pavilion still complimented the whole feel. Her seating chart had all little mini keys and there were Alice themed cards throughout the food tables and on the bathroom doors. Those incredible table settings… omg.. the greenery and flowers — all the gold tones. And then I saw that insanely beautiful cake. yup. Done.

 

Why did you choose your venue? What did you love most about it?
It’s all outside but the reception tables are covered by the pavilion and there’s a wine house for keeping temperature controlled things like the cake and cold cocktail hour items. There’s a full kitchen so food will be prepared on site. We loved that ceremony and reception were both on site and the romantic garden feel of the place. There is a cute white gazebo and its landscaped really nice, plus there are 4 open flame fire pits with wrap around couches for lounging and gas flame lanterns around the property to give it a really nice ambiance in the evening. This is all alongside a small vineyard property which will be behind where the ceremony is held. The caterer’s handled everything rental wise and we were able to choose square reception tables along with the style of chairs we wanted down to the colors of the table cloths and the silverware and dishes.

 

Are there any important colors of themes involved in your wedding day?
Our colors are kind of all over the place but they include mostly greenery, cream/ivory, brushes of gold, and dusty garden colors. The girls are wearing blushes, golds, mauve and mercury. The floral details will include a lot of greenery (italian ruscus and seeded eucalptus) including pretty white anemone’s, peonies and dahlias in blush colors. We are still doing the hint of Alice details like escort cards with a mix of different keys attached. My ceramic white rabbit and clock face white teapot will be at the welcome sign. Tom is wearing his grandfather’s pocket watch with his boutonniere. I may do the “eat me” “drink me” labels on the favors once I sort them out.

 

Description of your gown and why it was the one. How did you know it was the one? What about the tux. Is there anything special?
Tom and I went and looked at suits and he is leaning toward a really nice blue one that looks sharp and makes his eyes stand out, but he hasn’t purchased one yet. My gown is colored “champagne blush” but looks more ivory than what that sounds like. It is sleeveless with an illusion neckline and has some interesting garden-y applique on the bodice that looks like vine coming off the bust and over the shoulder and the skirt is plain tulle and satin I believe. I had gone into David’s Bridal 3 times and tried on the same two dresses and couldn’t decide between them. A friend suggested that I check out The Curvy Bride after having a really fantastic experience there for her own wedding and so I made an appointment and found my dress that day. I tried on several others but the one I chose was just so flattering and nothing like any of the others that I had tried. I loved it and it was an easy decision which is how I knew it was the one.

 

Ceremony and Reception Location: Valenzano Winery / Caterer: Due Amici / Photographer: Serena Star Photography / Cinematographer: Free Sky Films / DJ: DJ Kiltboy / Floral Designer: The Blue Chrysanthemum / Cake Designer: The Cake Boutique / Gown Salon: The Curvy Bride / Wedding Gown Designer: Rebecca Ingram by Maggie Sottero/ Menswear: Men’s Warehouse / Bridesmaid Dresses: David’s Bridal / Invitation Designer: I Met Him On A Sunday

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