A Colorful Fall Wedding in Aspen, Colorado
Carolyn and Will
Like most good things in life, Carolyn and Will Osborne's relationship began with food. Fort Worth Central Market facilitated the introduction. At first, the duo stared awkwardly at each other until he had the courage to introduce himself in the checkout line. A few Facebook messages later, the first date was lined up. And after that one date, they had several more.
Almost three years later, Texans Carolyn (who runs the online costume jewelry and accessories boutique Lola and Lina with her sister) and Will (who works in the oil and gas industry) were on a romantic trip to New York City when he popped the question. Will's plan was to propose in their hotel room, but the hotel put them in the wrong room accidentally—three times. "I can see why he was worried," Carolyn says. "The right room was full of flowers, Champagne, and photos of us all over the wall. Naturally, I was ecstatic and on cloud nine."
They soon began planning a destination wedding, for September 17, 2016, in Colorado, where both Carolyn and Will had grown up vacationing. With help from Heidi Mayne of Red 25 Events, the scene was set at the Roaring Fork Club in Aspen, where the 380 guests could play golf, fish, and soak up the picturesque scenery of the mountains. An outdoor ceremony on the lawn started the black-tie celebration, which was formal yet colorful, and highlighted both families' love of Colorado, the groom's passion for golf (he played professionally for four years and now competes as an amateur), the colors of fall, and a classic Ralph Lauren style.
The first step the couple took while planning their wedding was to ask their family friend, artist Shelly Porter, to paint some watercolors for them. She painted three—two landscapes and a monogrammed encircled by a garland. That artwork became the overall motif and color scheme of the celebration and was used to design the invitations and the rest of the paper goods.
The invites were printed by Houston Invitation Service, on paper sporting a woodgrain impression. The suite included a card for the farewell brunch too, which was disco themed, so the invite was designed with a silver-foiled disco ball.
Bundles Gift Co. curated the welcome boxes that greeted guests. The wood boxes held two large sugar cookies in the shapes of Colorado and Texas. Shelly Porter's painted Aspen grove scene was attached to the top with a red ribbon and opened to reveal an itinerary for the weekend and things to do and see around town.
Will kept it classic with a shawl-collar Ralph Lauren tuxedo, black bow tie, and white pocket square.
Carolyn's mother had a photo from a magazine showing a Monique Lhuillier dress with a tulle overlay skirt—which ended up being "the one" even after the bride visited several salons and tried on many gowns. "I loved how the overlay blew in the breeze a little bit while I walked down the aisle, but could be detached after the ceremony to reveal a more fitted sheath for dancing," Carolyn says. "It was basically two dresses in one." She accessorized with a pair of antique Baroque South Sea pearl-and-diamond earrings that were a wedding gift from her parents.
Carolyn's creamy white bouquet of garden roses, lisianthus, dahlias, and ranunculus was finished off with a delicate cuff of yellow Aspen leaves.
One of the hardest parts of planning the wedding was sorting out what the bridesmaids would wear. "I wanted everyone to be comfortable and to like their gowns," Carolyn explains. Jenny Yoo separates were chosen—lace tops and tulle skirts, to pick up on the materials used in the bride's gown. Their vibrant bouquets of ranunculus, roses, and dahlias popped against their soft pink ensembles.
The Mother of the Bride
The Groom's Parents
Will's parents (in a classic tuxedo and a Jenny Packham gown with appliqued flowers) were all smiles.
The Ceremony Setting
The majestic mountains behind the altar served as the main focal point of the ceremony. Wood chairs were set with Aspen leaves strewn along the aisle instead of a runner. Guests (and the bridal party) entered through an arch made from two trees and elegant white roses.
Just before the start of the ceremony, the Silver City Strings played "Somewhere (There's a Place for Us)" from West Side Story. A friend from Houston performed the service, which included a reading of Corinthians 13: 4-13. The couple stood between a pair of Aspen trees during the service, just before the sun set behind the mountains. They exchanged wedding bands, both of which were forged from the same 18-carat rose gold.
Made in the Shade
Guests, including this flower girl, shaded themselves with white parasols.
A Musical Exit
"We went round and round with ceremony music ideas," Carolyn recalls. "At one point, we even considered having a high school marching band close the ceremony. Ultimately, we felt that the mix of strings with the Grace Gospel Choir would be a tasteful and elegant mix. They sang 'Oh Happy Day' as they led guests to cocktail hour."
After walking down the hill, guests enjoyed savory, seasonal hors d'oeuvres such as butternut squash soup shooters with candied ginger and elk wellington. Carolyn surprised her husband by bringing the bartender from their club back home in Texas to make his specialty cocktails.
A Themed Groom's Cake
Carolyn also surprised Will with the design for his groom's cake—a chocolate cake with fudge ganache on display during cocktail hour. "I figured it would have a golf theme," he says. "I liked the touch of our monogram on the flag."
Sporty Escort Cards
Round escort cards affixed to a wall of grass mimicked golf balls in honor of the groom's love of the sport. After finding their seating assignments, guests took their places at tables in one of three clear-top tents overlooking the tree-laden 18th hole.
A Colorful Statement
At the top of the escort card wall was a colorful interpretation of the duo's monogram, made entirely of fresh flowers.
The Head Table
R. Jack Balthazar placed a rug under the head table for a homey feel. Overhead, a garland-laced brass-and-leather chandelier hung. Autumnal-hued flowers, foliage, and fruit brought everything together.
The Place Settings
At each seat, Anna Weatherly china from Casa de Perrin was topped with linen napkins embroidered with the couple's monogram by Monogram Market & More, with the menu tucked inside. Some tables had olive crystal goblets and others had aubergine, and matte gold flatware was used throughout.
The meal began with the "Osborne salad" complete with an O-shaped parmesan crisp. Peppercorn filet mignon followed before wedding cake, petit fours, and chocolates were served.
Another Table Setup
There were four table styles in total. Here, the version with white linen overlays, floral centerpieces in compotes, smaller arrangements in julep cups, and petite clusters of fresh fruit.
Have a Seat
Curated lounges were sprinkled throughout the space, especially close to the dance floor.
We're with the Band
R. Jack Balthazar dreamed up the backdrop for the band, installing Aspen tree branches behind them.
Time to Dance
The newlyweds shared their first dance to Frankie Valli's "Can't Take My Eyes Off of You" on a dancefloor made by Premier Party Rentals using wide wood planks, which united the three tents and gave them all a sophisticated indoor club feeling. "It was one of the best surprises of all," Carolyn says of the floor. "Although it was discussed before and we watched it going up at the club for days in advance, we couldn't have anticipated just how awesome it would turn out."
Some Serious Dancing
The father of the bride wanted to be sure there was a fun dance band. And thanks to Elite Band, he got just that. "Everyone was up dancing so much before dinner that I was unsure if people were actually going to sit down to eat," Carolyn says. The band slowed things down and the crowd enjoyed their meal and the cake cutting before returning to dance some more.
One of the bridesmaid's dads and a few other guests jumped on stage to perform, too.
The Wedding Cake
A Change of Dress
Lighting up the Night
A grand fireworks display, set to a remix of Katy Perry's "Firework," lit up the night sky over the golf course and provided an energetic end to the night.
At the end of the reception, the happy couple exited in a fitting fashion—via golf cart.
Photography, Kristen Kilpatrick
Location and Catering, Roaring Fork Club
Event planning, Red25 Events
Flowers and Décor, R. Jack Balthazar
Videography, Fisheye Studio
Stationery, Houston Invitation Services
Custom Artwork, Shelly Porter
Cake, Pastry Aspen
Bride's earrings, Tenenbaum and Co.
Hair, Ceron Hair Studio
Makeup, Salon Tullio
Bridesmaids' attire, Jenny Yoo
Groom's tuxedo, Ralph Lauren
Lighting, Images by Lighting
Transportation, CTS Aspen
Bridal Stylist, Maradee Wahl
Chocolates, Cacao and Cardamom
Fireworks, Western Enterprises
Guest books, Indulge Maison Décor
Monogrammed napkins, Monogram Market & More
Sound, No Static
Welcome gifts, Bundles Gift Co.