Due to the big fat C-word, Jen and Mike’s music festival-themed Lake Tahoe wedding had to be pushed back to 2021. But, like so many other couples in the same boat, they didn’t want to wait to be married so they decided to head to Vegas with a small group of friends and family for some classically Vegas nuptials.
The couple actually met while Mike was on a road trip and so, living 1,700 miles apart, they did the long distance thing for the first three years of their relationship. They would drive the sprawling desert drive that linked them to visit each other so it was rather fitting that they had a desert ceremony in the end.
Their ceremony was officiated by a friend (fun fact, Jen officiated his wedding in 2017!) “Our wedding was a secret from most of our friends and family and due to COVID it felt very up in the air most of the time we were planning it”, Jen told us. “There were many dead ends, restrictions and complications. We weren’t even sure if we would be able to fly to Las Vegas. So, we kept the main focus simple: we were going to the desert to be married by a friend so no one could shut us down, even it meant driving the 1,200 miles to get there and just camping!”
In the end they did manage to get there, with some loved ones in tow. They hired a party bus an they all drove out to an unmarked turn-out on the side of the road for the ceremony. They chose not to have any music because they wanted to feel completely part of the moment and in the natural beauty of the landscape. “My Mum and Dad
walked me across the rocks and little ravines up to Mike. We trusted our friend, Kevin,
to write the ceremony and officiate. He told the story of how we met, describing it much like love stories that turn into songs. He quoted musicians like Dolly Parton and Sturgill Simpson. We recited our own vows. And that was it!”
“Hands down the ceremony was the best part of the day. I had always dreamed of standing before the one who chose me, saying ‘I do’ and commencing the life-long adventure of marriage with my partner. It’s funny that even though the pandemic made the wedding of my dreams come to a crashing halt, we stood there and said, ‘This is what it’s all about, this is perfect’.”
Jen’s dress came from Windsor and was a steal at $89! Her cape was made by UK-based Electric Plume who makes incredible disco meets Burning Man pieces. Her bag was ALDO and her bouquet was homemade from supermarket flowers bought the morning of! “I used scrap velvet tassels I brought from home and I made charms with pictures of loved ones who couldn’t be there. I also made vintage-inspired handkerchiefs with funny sayings for everyone, like ‘keep your shit together’ and I made the girls’ bracelets with horse shoes, dice, and playing cards for a little luck!”
“I never thought I would elope to Las Vegas, so every detail was spontaneous, joyful, and at times – a little tacky, which made us laugh!” the bride concluded. “Our advice to other couples would be that you can make yourself crazy, and distracted from what’s important if you try to do everything yourself. Choose your vendors wisely, don’t skimp on the important ones, and trust them in their work. Also, once you decide on something, be sure about it and stop looking. It will make your life so much easier, there are just too many things to work out to be going back and making changes!”