Aimee & Patrick’s Bodega Bay Elopement

* Aimee, Communications Manager & Patrick, Electrical Engineer * Photographer: Jillian West of Little Bat Photography * Soundtrack for reading: “Love & Some Verses” by Iron & Wine *

The Info—Photographer: Jillian West of Little Bat Photography / Location: Bodega Head, Sonoma Cost State Beach / Venue: Winnebago / Aimee’s Dress: J.Crew / Aimee’s Reception Dress: BHLDN (Worn for the party the following day…but I wanted some pics on the beach, too! Ah, vanity.) / Aimee’s Pearls and Cameo Brooch: Heirlooms from Aimee’s grandmothers / Aimee’s Shoes: Anthropologie / Amiee’s Headpiece: Ruche / Patrick’s Shoes and Jacket: Barney’s Outlet

Other cool stuff we should know about: We wanted our wedding to feel comfortable, and it was. Having recently returned from a yearlong road trip, using our trusty RV as our dressing room and staging area felt natural. Plus, it enabled us to hold our little wedding at a gorgeous state park without any real facilities. We had just twelve guests—our families joined us on a bluff overlooking the Pacific for a sweet, intimate ceremony, followed by cake and champagne. The next day we threw a celebratory party at one of our favorite restaurants with a larger group of loved ones.

The wind was chilly but our hearts were warm and full. Everyone pitched in and added their touch. I made the cake, which my aunt put together while we took photos. During the ceremony, Patrick’s father read a poem, and his mom read a blessing. My father, a violinmaker, played the Polish lullaby that sent me to sleep when I was a child. My mom made corsages, ribbon streamers, and boutonnières. She read during our ceremony, too. Plus, everyone was amazingly color-coordinated without prior discussion and the sun peeked out minutes before we exchanged our vows.

The day was a happy blur. We spoke important words. We teared up. We spotted whales off the coast.

We couldn’t stop smiling.

Favorite thing about the wedding: The simplicity and natural beauty. The abundance of joy. The laughter.

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