Lana and Danny’s Homespun Colorado Wedding
While fulfilling her lifelong dream of traveling cross-country to San Francisco, Lana Frankel, creator of the illustration company Lana’s Shop, met Danny Effron, cofounder of Active Junky, at a New Year’s Eve party in 2009 in Colorado. The two immediately felt a connection, and after a period of long-distance dating, Danny joined Lana in California, before the couple eventually returned to Colorado.
One week, Danny asked Lana to accompany him on a work trip to Aspen. There, they carved out some time to take a hike. The duo started up the mountain, only to find that the overcast day was leading to a snowstorm. Undeterred and alone on the trail, the couple reached the quiet summit and wiped down a powder-covered bench to take in the idyllic views. More surprising than the weather was when Danny dropped to one knee to pop the question. The couple’s spontaneous and solitary moment inspired their September 27, 2014, outdoor nuptials.They were joined by 150 guests in the mountains at River Bend for their wedding.
Lana designed and hand-painted the stationery, aiming for an “elegant, colorful, and romantic” suite. The invitations featured the lyrics “We’ve got the moon and stars above” from Trey Anastasio’s “Drifting,” which doubled as the pair’s first dance tune. Another fun touch: The envelope liners boasted illustrations of the objects and activities loved by the bride and groom, including skis, a guitar, a paintbrush, and biking.
Welcome to Town
Mini booklets listed the weekend’s events and recommendations for local restaurants, coffee shops, boutiques, and activities. “Boulder is such a fun walking town, and we wanted to make sure people took advantage and really explored,” Lana says.
Melting With Love
The couple’s rose-gold bands were not the only special jewels of the day. Danny designed Lana’s engagement ring by incorporating his great aunt’s baguette diamonds to create a sparkling halo around the center diamond. And as a wedding gift, Lana’s parents had their own wedding bands melted down to create a priceless pair of earrings (shown here) for the bride to wear. Each disk-shaped earring is half of Lana’s mother’s wedding band and half of her father’s. The set kept the original design and texture of both rings.
Lana wore a French Chantilly lace strapless Monique Lhuillier “Azure” gown from Anna-Bé with a pair of Sole Society gray-and-ecru wedges. She opted for a small comb of eucalyptus leaves for her ponytail instead of a traditional veil and complemented the look with her grandmother’s antique diamond and gold bangle.
Violet Floral Design arranged Lana’s bouquet, made up of ranunculus, dahlias, roses, poppies, thistle, delphinium, and seeded eucalyptus, which complemented the eucalyptus leaves in her hair. Long double-faced satin and raw silk tied the clutch together.
A petite boutonniere was paired with mountain range wooden cuff links from Etsy; a baby-blue linen pocket square and a tie with diagonal stripes rounded out the groom’s ensemble.
The bridesmaids wore six different Joanna August designs, one BHLDN design, and one dress from ASOS, all in soft mint green. They paired the dresses with flat sandals, perfect for the grassy setting. Each lady held flower-free bouquets of olive branch, bay leaf, and eucalyptus bundled with multicolored ribbons.
An Extra Something
The guys’ ensembles would not have been complete without socks customized with Danny’s company’s logo.
The couple’s nieces donned tiered lace dresses from Zulily and floral hair combs. They carried buckets of eucalyptus leaves to scatter down the aisle.
All in the Family
The couples’ parents and stepparents played an integral part in the wedding, from officiating to hand-dipping chocolate-covered treats.
Illustrated pocket-size programs were bound together with a duo of green satin ribbons. Inside, the six pages outlined the members of the bridal party, the flow of the ceremony, a poem the bride’s mom wrote for the couple, a dedication to friends and family members who had passed, and thank-yous from Lana and Danny.
Music to the Ears
The couple went for a combination of warm and cool tones that pulled from the rocks around the venue. Vases of flowers placed at the end of the aisle naturally fit the grassy area in which the two said their vows.
The ceremony began at 4 o’ clock with Lana’s brother singing and performing “You’re My Home” by Billy Joel and her father officiating the service. Later, Danny’s stepsister read “Thank You” by Led Zeppelin.
The couple had gone on a special “unplugged” trip to write their vows prior to their wedding. After mountain climbing for three hours, they penned them together on a ledge.
A Grand Conclusion
The couple shared their first kiss as husband and wife, then Danny broke a glass. The two walked up the aisle to the Grateful Dead’s “Franklin’s Tower,” kicking off married life in style.
Corn Hole, Anyone?
The couple extended cocktail hour to give guests more time to enjoy the scenery, corn hole games, and the fireside.
I Hope You Always …
Instead of a traditional guest book, invitees personalized advice cards that the couple plans to read each year on their anniversary. Danny’s mother hand-painted an antique wooden box where the cards will be kept.
The ceremony and reception were held in Lyons, Colorado, at River Bend, a former trailer park ravaged by massive floods in 2013. Despite the mud and debris, the couple took a chance on the venue in hopes of supporting the town’s recovery. In turn, the venue rewarded its first couple to wed there with a day they would never forget.
A Seating Chart
An oversize poster outlined everyone’s seating assignments.
Dinner Is Served
Invitees noshed on potato latkes, smoked salmon, chicken meatballs, and seasonal pizzas during cocktail hour and then dined family-style on homemade spinach-and-cheese ravioli, halibut, pesto chicken, and grilled vegetables.
Center of Attention
Local handmade wooden tables were situated under a large tent in the center of the property. Painted candlesticks holding tapers lined the tables amid garlands of greenery and fresh fruit. The place settings included ornate white plates accented with gold flatware from Yonder Floral and Decor House.
The Table Numbers
Other tables were set with centerpieces of roses, ranunculus, eucalyptus, and foliage. Colorful table numbers rounded out the setup.
For Extra Flavor
Lana sourced unfinished wood bowls, which she stained and proofed to be used for salt and pepper on the table. She painted wood spoons to add a colorful touch.
Friends and family toasted the couple during the reception.
Individual s’mores packs were available to guests throughout the night to roast marshmallows at the bonfire.
Dance the Night Away
The Tripping Griswolds played Trey Anastasio’s “Drifting” for the couple’s first dance.
Lana decorated macarons from Tee and Cakes for the dessert table, while her mother supplied brownies, coffee cake, and rugelach.
Blackberries and ivy accented a simple cookies-and-cream-flavored cake by Tee and Cakes.
The Cake Toppers
Lana illustrated a cake topper to mimic herself and Danny.
Danny joined the band for “Franklin’s Tower,” the last song, making the night memorable in more ways than one. Lana admits thinking that his performance was planned, but as it turns out, his escapade was purely spur of the moment. “The smile on my husband’s face captured my heart,” Lana says.
Photography: Laura Murray Photography
Location: River Bend
Event Planning: Calluna Events
Flowers: Violet Floral Designs
Videography: Andrew Nease Video
Stationery: Lana’s Shop
Cake: Tee and Cakes
Music: The Tripping Griswolds
Hair: The Parlour