Orange County Winery Wedding

AS SEEN IN STYLE ME PRETTY... This Orange County Winery Wedding planned by Cortney Helaine wins the award for best reception ever. For starters? The couple rode in on a horse. Oh, and they also arranged for a jumping show during the reception. I mean, I’m not judge, but that’s ribbon worthy. From the ethereal ceremony underneath a 100-year-old oak tree, to the floral covered fountains, this gallery is as good as gold. See it all captured by Jenna Bechtholt in The Vault

From Cortney Helaine Orange County Winery Wedding Planner…Jack and Julie’s wedding was filled with friends and family from all across the globe. Jack’s parents being Korean, Julie born a Southern California girl, but both living in New York City created a guest list from around the globe.

The planning process was speedy but it was no problem for Julie as she knew the wedding she had been dreaming of since a girl. With a monochromatic all white color scheme with bits of greenery, Julie imagined an etherial ceremony underneath 100 year old oak trees, which she found at Giracci Vineyard and Farm. As guests arrived they were greeted by the valet and passed a fountain covered with large white floral clusters that cascaded down the fountain allowing the water to trickle over them.

Guests were escorted to their seats beneath the giant oak trees and a family friend began to serenade the bridal party as the walked down the aisle. Julie walked arm in arm with her father together down the aisle, a moment they had both waited their whole lives for. Jack’s smile could be seen from across the farm as small tears fell from Julie’s mother in joy. The couple stood underneath 5 hanging chandeliers with florals tucked into them and a beautiful pink and light blue fabric back drop with ivory lace.

Throughout the ceremony, the couple had laughter, tears and an overall element of joy surrounding them as their pastor, from their church in New York, explained the meanings and celebration of marriage.

As the bridal party departed to a nearby meadow, the guests were invited to the barn for cocktails but this is no ordinary barn. It is a refurbished barn turned event center with red wood paneled walls and white shutters. Guests lounged on the furniture while surrounded by dropped organza. A menu of mini lobster rolls, sugar cane skewered tiger shrimp and a seared scallop made guests mouths watered as the walked by.

To help bring the families together and give them something to universally enjoy, a horse jumping show was arranged. Riders in their full dress uniforms proceeded to enter the ring and give guests a show. While guests watched the horses and jumpers preform children were able to walk up and pet a beautiful brown horse on the sidelines and speak to a trainer about what the average training day looks like. Julie even made an appearance towards the end of the cocktail hour on a horse named Oh-la-la to show off he beautiful train and riding skills.

As guests were invited to their seats by shine entertainment, they entered Julie’s favorite part in the planning process, her customized reception space. Complete with a hanging cake, affogato station, vintage chandeliers, market lights, crystal and glass candelabras, as well an additional 4 tier wedding cake atop the vintage wishing well.

Their night proceeded with a duel entree of seabags and filet provided by 24 Carrots catering and then onto toasts and dancing through the night. Guests loved the blow-up photo booth as well as homemade sweet treats provided by the family and friends of the bride. Everything was finished off with a fabulous toast to the bride and groom and loving words from both sets of parents as the guests departed.

From The Bride…Jack and I met through a mutual friend. Having just recently moved to New York from California, I was excited to meet new people, and the group of us became friends. About a year after meeting, I heard from our mutual friends that Jack was interested. I had no interest at that time and saw him only as a friend. After my good friend kept telling me what a good guy he was and encouraging me to give him a chance, we went on two awkward dates. I called him afterwards and told him that I was “too busy to date”. He responded so graciously that after we hung up, I was actually more interested in him. After another month went by, our friends told us that we needed to talk to one another, and after sharing our mutual feelings, we giddily began dating.

About a month before he proposed, Jack flew to California to get my parents’ blessing. He knew that I wanted my family and best friends around when he proposed to me, so it all happened during a trip to California. We went to look at wedding venues, and on Saturday morning, we decided on the venue. I noted the irony that we had put the deposit down when I wasn’t technically engaged yet. Afterwards, my best friends took me to eat and then to Crystal Cove. I began to get a sense of what was happening, but even though I had an idea, I still cried so much after seeing Jack. He showed me a scrapbook that he had made. It had pictures and mementos from when we first started dating- he had even saved the ticket to our first date at Cirque du Soleil! I was so touched that such a non-crafty guy took the time to make a scrapbook. He also collected letters and videos from my friends, and at the end of it, had written a letter to me. After reading it, he got on one knee and proposed. I cried throughout the whole thing, and said yes immediately!

Having become obsessed with Style Me Pretty in college, I had a good sense of what I wanted for my wedding. We had a 4 month engagement, so I had a lot of work to do. I went through all of the vendors on SMP’s Little Black Book, but because it was a short engagement, many were understandably unavailable. Through countless searches and with the help of my amazing coordinator Cortney, I found the best vendors. We wanted our guests to enjoy the day at our gorgeous outdoor venue! A quartet and guitarist, horse show, photo booth, mini lobster rolls, home-made desserts, hanging cake, market lights, candelabras, selfie-sticks, dreamy florals, the list goes on! We cannot thank our vendors enough, to name a few- Little Hill Floral Designs adorned the venue with the prettiest florals, 24 Carrots catering cooked up and served the best food, Signature Party rentals put together an amazing set up, Shine Entertainment kept the guests laughing, Jenna Bechtholt photography and Sherman Film Productions captured the day beautifully, and of course, Cortney coordinated the whole day seamlessly!

We flew our pastor from New York to officiate our wedding, which was so special to us. Jack and I could not stop crying happy tears throughout the ceremony. More than anything, we wanted all our guests to hear the gospel, the only message that gives us eternal hope and joy. That Holy God, would look upon sinners like you and me, and in love, send His only Son, Jesus Christ, fully God and fully man to live a perfect sinless life that we could never live, die on the cross, and resurrect three days later so that anyone who believes in Him, repents and trusts Jesus as Lord and Savior, would have eternal life. Jack and my greatest desire was that people would hear this and believe, and share in the joy that we have. We had so much fun and truly savored each moment, it was a day we will cherish forever! 


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Cortney Helaine is the creator of five star event experiences in Orange County and surrounding areas. We are fluent in cultural celebrations and specialize in working with a global clientele that seeks to weave their life stories and imagination into cohesive, multi-cultural events.

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