Intimate New Mexico elopement: Zach + Nicole
A few really rad facts about Zachary + Nicole’s elopement: One, they planned it in three months and road-tripped to their destination. Which is a super cool way to prep for a wedding, if you ask us. They hiked up to a ceremony spot at Ojo Caliente they chose day-of. Nicole made her dress because she found the perfect lace. She also foraged her florals from markets in the area. Being a floral designer + stylist who’s worked with Apryl Ann, she knew was the one to have behind the lens. Okay. Now that we’ve sufficiently set you up, let’s hear their story, shall we?
Nicole tells it, Not only is Ojo stunningly beautiful but its location is secluded in wilderness and the history of the spa is incredible. It was important to both of us to be in nature, to be in a peaceful, quiet environment where we could both relax and truly focus on the meaning behind the day. Our morning before the ceremony was spent together at breakfast and then we split and both spent the day in quiet reflection. I got a massage and body scrub and relaxed in the spas natural spring waters and Zachary had a hike and soaked in the pools and mud baths. It was the perfect beginning to our perfect day.
The ceremony was so intimate and special. Just the two of us and some great friends of ours that drove down from Denver to be our witnesses. But my favorite part was after the ceremony. Myself, Zachary, Apryl, Erin, and Matt (our witnesses) changed into our boots and hiked up a mountain to take photos as the sun was setting. The landscape was incredible. We had the best time reflecting on the day, cheers-ing each other with a flask of whiskey, finding unbelievable scenery, and having fun exploring and getting stunning photos. Just after the sun set a beautiful storm rolled in. It was quite an adventure running down the hills in our wedding dress and suit laughing all the way as we tried to beat the rain.
One bouquet was 100% bougainvillea, and the other had that plus cosmos, Queen Anne’s lace, tulips, spray roses, and foraged greens.
We knew if we didn’t plan our trip for the summer we would have to wait a year to take it because of our jobs. We were too excited and ready to marry to wait! We are both DIYers, almost to a fault! When I found the lace overlay I was determined to make the slip dress myself because I had a specific vision in mind. After weeks of constructing and reconstructing the garment, seeking advice from tailors and dress-makers (Zachary even spent some time on the sewing machine!), and trying different techniques and fabrics I was ready to give up. I even had a couple of back-up dresses that I liked enough but didn’t love the way I loved the lace (they even traveled with me to New Mexico just in case.) It was literally down to the last hours before our ceremony that I completed the final touches on my dress and I’m so happy that I stuck with my plan. And while it did cause a little stress my advice is don’t give up on your vision! There are always ways and resources to help you achieve your goal.
The whole beautiful day was pulled off with a 10,000 budget too. Congrats guys!
Photographer: Apryl Ann Photography / Venue: Ojo Caliente Mineral Springs Spa and Resort / Florals, Hair, & Makeup: Bride / Bride’s Dress: Bride with lace overlay via Etsy / Shoes: BCBG / Boots: Steve Madden / Engagement Ring: Antique opal / Wedding Bands: Custom / Necklace: Antique / Groom’s Shoes: Red Wing