Kristena and Ryan were married outside on Grand Newport Plaza followed by a reception inside Celebrations in Costa Mesa, Calif. on November 2. Fun fact: The bride is also our very own Apple Blossom from Bridal Buds! “My husband and I fell in love with it as soon as we toured the grounds,” Kristena said. “I think the one thing about it was that it was unique, and we loved that we could have the ceremony and reception in one place without having our guests travel.” She wore a sweetheart ruffled ball gown, accessorized with a jeweled sash and pair of black Badgley Mischka petal t-strap high heels, while the groom wore a black tuxedo, accessorized with a white tie. A favorite moment? “The first look!” she said. “When I came down the staircase and saw my husband standing there waiting for me, I was so excited. Seeing his expression was worth all the nerves and craziness up to that point.” Following the nuptials, guests were asked to fill out “We Say” advice cards, tables were decorated with black linens and red roses centerpieces, and a candy bar was filled with taffy, gummies, cake pops, and chocolates, which also doubled as favors. “It was the perfect item for them to take home with them after the night,” Kristena said.
From the photographer: “Jeff and Blair, reality TV stars of BRAVO’s Newlyweds: The First Year, married in Savannah, Georgia at the doors of the historic and prestigious Harper Fowlkes House. They arrived in a majestic horse drawn carriage with the ceremony performed by Reverend Steve Schulte with their closest friends and family. They were transported post-ceremony to their “Southern Soiree.” Guests were directed to their tables that were named after great Southern movies and treated to an elegant evening in a luxurious garden-like setting complete with chandeliers. The details including the cake were all black and white and natural greens. All enjoyed Southern style food and childhood favorites like Girl Scout Cookies and milk. Guests popped streamers and sent the happy couple on their way at the end of the night. It was a perfect send off on their adventure!” – Donna Von Bruening of Donna Von Bruening Photographers
1. What was the one thing about your venue that made you know it was the one?
Let me start off with I’m from Arkansas, the “Natural State.” We have abundant trees and wildlife everywhere you look. The barn for me really encompassed the love I have for my state and natural surroundings. To get to the barn you take the “backroads” through beautiful wildflower pastures that have scattered trees that have stood the passage of time. You then travel down a dirt road with almost a perfect tunnel of blooming and green trees. You are greeted with a rustic and large barn, even though they constructed this barn about a year ago, it holds such an aged grandeur, it really makes you feel something special. A connection to something you saw a long time ago, a place you always wanted to visit. The area it is surrounded by has skillfully constructed stone garden beds with all colors and shapes of flowers. It also has a bonfire area and huge flatbed swing. All of these things made me feel comfortable and at home. They made me feel proud that I could live in such a place full of beauty. The Barn at Twin Oaks Ranch is a place where I believe many couples could find a serene but lively venue to create their perfect wedding memories.
2. Which three details from your wedding were your favorites?
3. Give us the one moment from your wedding that you can’t stop thinking about.
All day long it was supposed to rain on my wedding. The sky was gray and the sun was hidden. I was terrified that this would be the death of my dream outdoor wedding. Of course, the barn had planned an inside move if needed, but I was still nervous. The rain held off and when it finally started to drizzle, while Joe and I were exchanging our vows under the arbor, the rain sprinkled in a perfect circle around us. It was the trees shaking off the collected drops in such a manner it looked planned. After the trees cleared their branches, the sun jumped out from a cloud and shined through these trees right on to us. It was seriously like something out of a movie. Although we dated for six years prior to our wedding, this made me feel like this was proof that rain or shine we were meant to be together.