Happy Friday, lovelies! You know we just had to end the week with a feel-good elopement story. So, remember when we hosted an elopement photo + video giveaway with Cana Family and Siren Floral Co? Lots of you submitted videos of you and your partner as an entry to the giveaway and the lucky winners were Parker + Tessa. They actually grew up in the same small town, parted ways after high school, and hit it off much later after reconnecting by chance. Well, here they are, 12 years down the road, saying I Do along the same Oregon river Parker had proposed at (actually, in!).
The Lower Deschutes River is really isolated, so it seemed logistically risky to choose it as a wedding location. But it actually helped them simplify and focus on only the most important elements.
Tessa says, Originally, we didn’t know if we wanted to truly elope. We had played around with the idea for a bit and how we could potentially modify the modern day elopement to tailor to us, but we kept hitting roadblocks on how to “choose” the people we wanted with us. When we saw “the greatest elopement giveaway ever” we thought, why not? Let’s just enter and see what happens and maybe it’ll help guide our decisions. When we won, we had finally made up our minds that it would be just us for the ceremony, and we would throw a bash a few days after to celebrate with family and friends who had been by our sides through this journey. Choosing to elope on our own felt like the best decision we had ever made; it was easier to pursue our wildest dreams of the where’s and how’s of the ceremony, and truly allowed us to focus on each other and ourselves without the worries of others.
We did a scoping trip a few weeks before the ceremony with our friend and fishing guide, Martin, to figure out where exactly we wanted to elope. We checked out a lot of spots along the river, but when we landed at Harris Canyon it all clicked, and we knew it was the spot. We walked around drinking it all in, and Parker pointed to the top of the hill and said, “that looks pretty cool,” and it was settled. It was a perfect mix of golden grass, sheer cliffs, river, and endless sky.Nichole Potter was behind Tessa’s laidback, boho bridal hair. So perfect!
The bouquet featured coppery roses and blush carnations Rachael had brought along, and the rest was foraged from their surroundings, including dried elements and native flowers. Not all the roses made the long, hot journey, but the carnations were troopers and Rachael worked magic with what they had. Super pretty!
How about our groom’s suit? Taylor Stitch made it of green linen from their spring collection. So perfect for an elopement in nature!
Tessa adorned her boho Cleobella dress with meaningful borrowed jewelry from each of her friends, a Navajo turquoise time necklace, and jewelry she’d made herself. Her hairpin was also made by a friend.
I think one of the most memorable moments for me was when Parker and I had reached the top of the hill and I saw the sparkle in his eyes; we were both so stoked, and had the biggest uncontrollable grins on our faces, feeling so ready to marry each other. The hillside had been charred by a lightning storm the week prior, and it was stark black in comparison to the surroundings. The lighting was insane; another wildfire had started that morning and was making the sky glow with orange and yellow, making for a truly unforgettable setting.
Wedding advice, from our bride: Stay calm and remember it’s about YOU and your partner. I think nowadays there’s a lot of pressure surrounding a wedding day, and the one thing I had to remind myself of, is that it was our day, and it is supposed to be the “best day of our lives” so how can we make that dreamy concept a reality. So remain positive, put you and your partner first, and focus on the basics that make you truly happy in the moment as well as continually spark joy when you look back on your day.Tessa and Parker Party Film from The Cana Family on Vimeo.
Such a unique, memorable, special day. Congratulations, Tessa + Parker!
Photography & Videography: Ben & Drew of Cana Family / Location: Lower Deschutes River in Oregon / Styling, Coordination, Floral Design & Officiant: Rachael of Siren Floral Co / Hair: Nichole Potter / Guides: Martin, Matt, Dorian, Dylan, and Doug from Fin & Fire in Redmond, OR / Drinks: Union Wine / Flower Growers: Rose Story Farm / Bouquet Ribbon: Silk & Willow / Wedding Dress: The Ora Dress by Cleobella from Vanilla Urban Threads in Bend, OR / Sandals: Old Navy / Rings: Jennifer Dawes Design / Hair Extensions: THM Hair Extensions / Hairpin: Made by Hannah Wagonhurst / Groom’s Suit & Shirt: Taylor Stitch / Bolo Tie: Made by Bride / Boots: Ariat