Canadian wedding: Tanessa + Sheldon

Categories   Real Weddings

Two words: Llama farm.

How many weddings include a herd of llamas? Kay, we’re focusing on the wrong thing, but we didn’t want that little detail to go unnoticed. Tanessa and Sheldon were married in a little wooden church in Cloverdale, British Columbia. And then had their reception at The Barn on The Mountain in Abbotsford. It is a stunning barn if we do say so ourselves. On 40 acres with huge wooden doors open to look over the entire valley, anyone who’s planning to get married up that way should most definitely check it out.

This wedding just feels so true and so heartfelt. Of course all the weddings we feature are heartfelt, but something about the tiny wooden-walled church, crammed full of close friends and family makes you sit down and pay attention.



Tanessa made her hairpiece and her mom made her veil. Her grandmother made apple pies for the reception and Sheldon’s sister Jaylene and cousin Jody arranged the flowers they purchased from a local dahlia farm.






And now if this isn’t the most epic DIY project ever, not sure what is… Tanessa (with the help of her friend Monica) designed the programs to look like a classic novel. She spent months collecting old novels and used their covers to bind the programs. Such a beautiful idea!



So in love with this intimate photo of their ceremony. They had a bunch of friends serve as musicians and everyone sang old gospel songs that Tanessa and Sheldon chose. Amazing.




Llamas!!! (Or maybe alpacas? We don’t know the difference).


They decorated their reception tables with old books and antique picture frames filled with black and white photos of their family heritage.


Beautiful venue…


So pretty, you two! The sentiment really comes through. And those programs are unbelievable. Congratulations!!!

Photography: James Moes (you can see lots more photos on his blog) / Ceremony venue: Historic Christ Church / Reception venue: The Barn on The Mountain / Catering: Savoury Chef / Band: The Sumner Brothers

Social Love

Janice on Dec 9, 2009

That is one beautiful wedding--the photos are stunning + so intimate. L-O-V-E the wedding programs--such a wonderful touch. This is a beautiful part of the country. When one drives through here in the summer months it is filled with a lushness that is hard to describe. Janice

Lara on Dec 9, 2009

the flowers are amazing! i'm in love with the colors. gorgeous!

Shayna on Dec 9, 2009

Alpacas! They got married on an alpaca farm! I am SO IN LOVE with this idea that I'm not really sure what to do with myself. The knitter and the bride in me are at long last thrilled about the same thing!

Ashley on Dec 9, 2009

Love this wedding!!! What a stunning dress. And the bouquets are amazing... dahlias are my absolute fave. How great that she bound all the programs; that is a great keepsake.

Heather on Dec 9, 2009

What an amazing wedding! I love the gospel singing, the kneeling and walking through their friends raised hands. What a unique wondrous occasion! Love it!

Lisa Marie on Dec 9, 2009

Stunning. One of the loveliest I have seen lately. Really like the family heritage framed photos scattered throughout the reception. Wonderful! p.s....Alpacas are sweet, gentle, shy creatures who, fittingly, prefer to be with at least one other & never alone. Perfect! Thank you for sharing & congrats to Tanessa & Sheldon!

Meg @ Sienna Wedding on Dec 9, 2009

Very cool wedding! Also, congrats on being #1 blog in Brides magazine, that's awesome!

magnolia on Dec 9, 2009

gorgeous. where did those bridesmaid's dresses come from?

Annie Nilsson on Dec 9, 2009

Oh! what a wonderful wedding! So many genuinely lovely details. I love love the programs. And having everybody sing gospel songs... the only word I can come up with for that is joyous.

laura on Dec 9, 2009

love the shot with the yellow cardigan

[email protected] Belle Bride on Dec 9, 2009

The details on her dress are so pretty! PS CONGRATS - Just saw your shout out in Brides magazine! yay!

jen jafarzadeh on Dec 9, 2009

such a sweet wedding! that program idea is amazing! reminds me of this restaurant in paris where I ate that had their menus in vintage books. these photos are fantastic!

kara s. on Dec 9, 2009

what a fun idea!! i love the fun details, I made the same bridesmaid dress for a wedding that i was in recently!! such a exquisite pattern!

ruthyg on Dec 9, 2009

I am in love with these favorite is the ceremony one where they are kneeling...just breathtaking

Camille @ STYLE NOTES on Dec 9, 2009

That is truly one of the most gorgeous hair pieces I've ever laid eyes on... Tanessa, you are an artist! So elegant.

boone on Dec 9, 2009

looks fantastic james!

Ati @ Gekd Boutique on Dec 9, 2009

Those programs are just fabulous! I ♥ those so.

Chocolate Butterbean on Dec 9, 2009

Oh, wow - that all looks amazing. Looks like the kind of wedding I'd want to attend! Those programs are perfection and you can really see their heart in all of the details and the fellowship in the beautiful pictures.

Pensacola Beach weddings on Dec 10, 2009

Everything about this wedding was beautiful. I love the inscription about their parents. That was so touching. And the alpacas were cute. Or was it llamas? The promenade thru the outstretched hands looked like fun.

Molly on Dec 10, 2009

where are those green bridesmaids dresses from? love them!

Timeless Pearls on Dec 10, 2009

This could not be anymore beautiful.

kara s. on Dec 10, 2009

molly, the one with the ruffled collar is simplicity pattern #2497 its pure gorgeous!!

kara s. on Dec 10, 2009

molly- i think that i found the other one too!! they are gorgeous!! also a simplicity pattern!!

koozies on Dec 11, 2009

It seems that U had a wonderful and marvelous wedding which every girl wish to reach

Bali Beach Bunny on Dec 11, 2009

wow, this is one of the best the wooden church, the misty air, the casual aisle walk and cool hat of the groom retro fabulous seriously, this wedding, and this blog ROCKS thanks for giving me so much inspiration for my restaurant in bali can't wait to get open and hold wedding parties there grrrrrr

Lele on Dec 14, 2009

The photography is so far and above what you usually see with wedding photography

Lele on Dec 14, 2009

Outstanding photography!

bret cole on Dec 14, 2009

absolutely love this wedding!! and James Moes did a wonderful job capturing it!! so sweet...

Dina on Dec 14, 2009

i loved these photos! so much love and genuine feeling in them!

Christine on Dec 14, 2009

Gorgeous venue!

Ashley on Dec 14, 2009

I am more than excited that this is a local wedding for me! I live seven minutes away from the reception venue. I think I'll be copying this entire wedding! It is truly more beautiful than any of the ones I've seen on some of the other wedding blogs. There is so much personality, and uniqueness. It is sensational!

Grand Palladium Lady Hamilton Weddings on Dec 16, 2009

A very unique and well-thought out wedding celebration.

Nicocracle Photography on Dec 21, 2009

Please, please. PLEASE tell us who made her wedding dress... I am so in love with that dress!

wedding on Dec 29, 2009

Wow, this wedding is definitely an original, simply gorgeous!

Megan Dunham on Dec 29, 2009

Where did you get your wedding dress - it's beautiful!

Amber on Jan 1, 2010

I have looked at this wedding over and over since you first posted it. I believe it is my favorite of all the weddings I have read about or attended. There is an intimacy and trueness to this love. It is obvious there is a family of support around them. I love the photo of the groom excitedly greeting a friend as he comes down the aisle and of the family praying over the couple. This is not a show, this is a ceremony. And gospel hymns, amazing. Thank you

Leah on Jan 12, 2010

Any chance of finding out the binding process on the programs? They are lovely and would very much like to copy!! :)

JESSICA on Jan 18, 2010


Erika Unbehaun on Jan 25, 2010

I'm loving the dahlia bouquet. They're great for a fun, loving and vibrant bride.

kim on Jan 27, 2010

Dahlias are one of our favorites! They're gorgeous and so perfect for summer brides here in the Northwest. We grow stunning dahlias locally!

Destin Beach Wedding on May 1, 2010

Thanks for the beautiful wedding pictures, love the hair piece..

Kim on Jan 30, 2012

Wow, beautiful wedding and photography! I am very curious about this is reception venue as Im looking into some venues for my own wedding. The link "The Barn on the Mountain" doesnt connect. Anyone know?

David on Mar 14, 2012

What a cool place. The Barn on the mountain. How can I find out more about this venue. Just got engaged and would love to get merried at this place. Can't find any web sight please help! Thanks Dave

Kiyomi on Jun 26, 2012

I love the venue! Any chance you can pass on the details for the barn? It is just what we're looking for!

mardz on Sep 14, 2012

i love the venue. can you give me more details about it if you have any? much appriciated... thanks

michelle on Feb 5, 2013

where exactly is this location? adress website under construction. photography is amazing

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