Medieval Feast Wedding

From Buena Lane “Newly owned and renovated, Folktale, from the beginning, wowed us. Vintage books, hammered tabletops, a resplendent chandelier, warm cream walls, and a grand fireplace seemed to whisper, This is it. French contemporary meets Gothic, meets California coast.

Sometimes, one gets lucky when conceptualizing a photo shoot, and design and pop culture themes emerge from a time and setting. Our minds immediately drifted to images from Game of Thrones and the idea of medieval marrying modern. It inspired a certain mood, as well: a little darker, less traditional bride. With edge!”

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“We felt a strong urge to challenge the status quo of same sex-styled shoots we had seen in our industry, and push their boundaries even further. We decided to play with the idea of two women modeling two unique, yet complementary, feminine, and slightly edgy styles.

Our bridal dress designer, Trish Lee, in San Francisco, showed us two dresses from a collection inspired by royalty. Trish’s bridal gowns were the perfect extension of the architecture at Folktale. The long-sleeved lace dress, ‘Isabella,’ with its illusion V-neckline, long sleeves, and A-line waist, is so named after Queen Isabella I. The dress speaks to monarchy, opulence, and strength, all the while soft with a luxurious tulle.

The strapless silk crepe, ‘Blair,’ is accentuated with a waist of fine embroidery of silver leaves and Swarovski crystal beading. The ‘Blushing Romance Veil’ speaks to a chic contemporary look, with a provincial feel.”

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“We met with our florist Darcy Craig, who was inspired by the season to incorporate austere blooming branches and a nontraditional, darker palette. We embraced the gothic motif and ran with a medieval yet romantic feel.”

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“Our makeup artist Madison McDowell, used light and dark to create looks that were opposite, while remaining harmonious. For fair-haired Courtney, Madison sought an unexpected boldness and intensity. Her eyes and lips were the main focus, with her hair pulled up to emphasize the high neckline of her lace dress. A few purple astrantia were tucked in her hair to offset the vintage brooch in her modern crown braid.

By contrast, Maisy’s look was soft and wearable, keeping the features romantic, her face dewy. Her braid was an effortless modern twist on classic elegance. Dramatic vintage glass earrings and a burst of color on the lips completed her look, pairing flawlessly with her striking tulip magnolia bouquet. Darcy created two bridal bouquets: one stark and nontraditional, the other lush and floral forward.”


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“The florals were a selection of unconventional early spring blooms, included hellebore, astrantia, clematis, and blooming tulip magnolia branches. A purple orchid, phalaenopsis, was added to the mix to pop in a palette of greys, creams, greens, and aubergine. Darcy sought to enhance the venue’s architectural elements and vintage furniture, enveloping the carved banquet table and the folds of the curtains with Emerald Feather Fern and candlelight.

Sunim Chambers, of San Francisco-based Sunim INK, took her invitation design suite cues from the florals, as well as medieval texts featuring heavy gothic fonts, tapestries, and Old World maps from that period.”

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“For the tablescapes, we envisioned a banquet table fit for royalty, beginning with handmade ceramic plates by New York-based Eric Bonnin. We wanted forged iron and antique silver utensils to offset the fragile florals. We endeavored to create a feeling of overflowing bounty and the beautiful mess sprung from sharing a splendid meal.

Chef Colin Gent and Nikki Tobia, of Culinary Eye from San Francisco, took a family-style approach to the wedding feast. Their overall philosophy was truly rustic, with the notion that the wedding meal was sourced locally from neighboring farms, or what the couple and their families were growing and cultivating: oysters, salmon, potatoes, beets, and beef! We topped it off with a 3-tiered cheese ‘cake’ tower of local blue cheese, manchego, and brie. Our baker, Gillian Sara Shaw of Black Jet Baking Co. in San Francisco, created galettes of dates and apples as a nod to the hand pies of yore!”

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Photography: Buena Lane // Planning, Wardrobe, & Prop Styling: Lily Spruce // Flordal Design & Styling: Seascape Flowers // Wedding Dress & Veil: Trish Lee Bridal // Jewelry: Foxy Couture // Makeup: Beauty By M // Hair: Camila Davis // Catering & Food Styling: Culinary Eye // Desserts: Black Jet Baking Co. // Plates & Glassware: Mrs. Peasy // Textiles & Hurricanes: Bright Event Rentals // Ceramics: Eric Bonnin // Place Card Holders: Hunt & Gather Rentals // Wedding Invitations: Sunim INK // Models: Courtney Musser and Maisy Spence-Sharpe // Venue: Folktale Winery in Carmel, California.

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