What was your design inspiration?
With a summit perch for sun-set vows on the Appalachian Trail and a sky-high celebration the next day, this hot-air balloon and hiking elopement inspiration was a beautiful way to show that adventure can be whatever you want it to be!
So many couples think they have to travel West or somewhere far away to have a beautiful adventure elopement. The South is truly an under-appreciated gem for beautiful elopement locations.Choosing to elope or have an intimate wedding closer to home is certainly a beautiful and cost-smart option to explore!
Describe your flowers.
In preparing for this session, Bailey shared that her and John’s original wedding flowers were lilies. Given they were renewing their vows during the session, I wanted the design of the florals to connect their “then” and “now” for extra meaning.
For the design for their vow renewal, the bouquet pulled in focal florals of lilies into the bouquet to bring past and present together.
Describe your cake.
We didn’t carry a cake for either part of this adventure. However, for the sunset summit hike, John and Bailey did carry up some delicious charcuterie for their post-vows celebration!
Tell us about your attire choices.
For both Bailey and John, ease of movement, comfort in activity, and aesthetics were important factors in garment selection. Knowing that we’d not only be hiking 2 miles in total, but also we would be in and out of a balloon basket, I quickly narrowed the search for Bailey’s dress to only the flowiest of options.
From The Wildlove Collective’s garment collection, Bailey wore a flowy, tiered-length silk chiffon skirt and a fitted lace bodysuit top.
With a court train that gracefully dusted the trail as she hiked, it was perfectly light and comfortable for hiking and climbing in and out of the hot air balloon basket. Even better, the tons of beautiful movement in the dress – especially as she hiked – showed her favorite brown leather Blundstone boots peeking out from underneath. This was true adventure bride styling!
John wore a lightweight navy wool-blend suit, paired with his favorite pair of brown leather boots as well. His garments were selected to ensure the modern fabric had a healthy amount of stretch and breathability for looking good in motion.
Describe the tablescape elements.
A classic Pendleton wool blanket served not only as their ceremony “stage” for their vows, but also as their celebration spot post vows. From that perch, they enjoyed charcuterie, snacks, and celebratory sips from their special handmade cups – all of which John carried up the mountain in a backpack!
Did you do any DIY Projects or create any handmade items for your wedding?
Bailey brought her original veil, and a box full of polaroids from their original wedding party with them to celebrate on this renewal.
The vow book, also a beautiful soft brown leather, has personal significance for them, and they used their true wedding bands in their vow renewal as well.
Another beautiful addition was that they had a friend who makes ceramics create special handmade cups for them. Carefully wrapped and carried up the mountain, Bailey and John used these on the hike portion to celebrate post-vows with a toast!
As lovers of mountains and unique experiences, Bailey and John were so excited to have a bucket list experience with a hot air balloon ride for part two of the adventure! Arriving to meet our balloon pilot and crew at the “Helen, Georgia to the Atlantic Balloon Race” event, we knew the winds might not be in our favor. So, while we weren’t able to do the full 1.5 hour flight planned, we still had a wonderful time on a tethered ride overlooking the festival.
As a wonderful surprise, our hosts at Balloons Over Georgia gave us an experience none of us ever imagined possible by allowing us to walk inside the canopy of the balloon as they “cold packed” the fabric with air in prep to send it skyward by activating the flames. It was surreal, incredibly beautiful, and was truly a unique opportunity!