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Stunning Micro Wedding at Emerald Bay State Park

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Marissa + Anthony

South Lake Tahoe, California
- 04/22/2023
Total wedding budget $5,016

Budget Breakdown

Below is an estimated wedding budget breakdown provided by the couple.

  • Cake/Dessert
  • Stationery
  • Flowers
  • Partner 1 Attire
  • Miscellaneous
  • Partner 2 Attire
  • Venue
  • Videography
  • Total wedding budget

Did you do any DIY projects or create any handmade items for your wedding?

Our wedding was very unique, but it catered to us perfectly! When we booked the location with SimplyEloped, we expected the snow to melt by April. It didn’t! So, we brought our hiking boots and used those during the wedding instead. I am so glad that we did this because it makes the pictures feel more adventurous and fits the scenery so well!

We also asked my dad to do our wedding as he is an ordained minister. He was very excited to participate and we are so glad that he got to marry us! We worked out a way for him to walk me down the aisle and then transition from father-of-the-bride to minister. For our exit, my sister-in-law had the idea to throw snow in the air as we walked back down the aisle. We loved this idea and knew we had to incorporate it. The pictures of this were stunning and it was also a lot of fun!

What unique details did you incorporate into your wedding?

We did things a bit differently for the food. My husband isn’t a huge fan of cake, and we wanted our wedding day to be perfect for both of us. So instead of cake, we got his favorite dessert, a Cinnabon cinnamon roll! We had this in a covered cake platter during the wedding, and the sun heated it up perfectly! We used this to get our “cake” pictures and share our first bite together.

After the wedding, we also chose to have pizza with our family. We didn’t want to do anything too formal, so this seemed like the perfect compromise. We went into town to Base Camp Pizza Co. and had the most delicious pizza. It was a great time to spend with family in a more intimate and informal setting.

What was the biggest thing you did to save money?

We veered away from the traditional wedding, which helped us save a lot of money! For the wedding dress, I knew that I didn’t want a gown, and I wanted something that would fit the location. I started looking for “white floor-length dresses” instead! I had great luck, and ended up ordering my dress from Lulu’s. It was perfect for me and for the location, and I am so glad that I did it this way!

While planning, we also looked for discounts and deals. My husband got his suit for nearly 50% off at Macy’s and we also took advantage of other deals that we had when checking out. He got his perfect suit for the perfect price. We had the same idea when it came to flowers! I signed up with my email to get 20% off and saved money on my beautiful flowers.

What’s the best advice you have for planning your wedding now that you’re on the other side? 

My best advice for planning a wedding is to think of what you truly want. We knew we didn’t want a fancy meal at the “reception” and we didn’t want to pay for something like that. So we opted for pizza and it was a lot more enjoyable for us.

In the end, the day is about the couple, and we tried to remember that throughout the planning process. Don’t feel the need to people please on your big day if the end result won’t make you happy.

What was your biggest splurge?

Our biggest splurge was the videography. This was very important for us as we only had immediate family in attendance. This video is something that we will keep and look back on forever. We also hope to share this with our family and friends at a later celebration. Our videographer, Ryan Mcginnis, was incredible and we can’t wait to see how the video comes together!

What was your favorite detail?

My favorite detail was the throwing of the snow. It made the moment feel so special and highlighted the family that we love. The pictures from that moment are some of my favorite and it reminds me of a winter wonderland!

What is the most memorable moment of your day?

The most memorable part has to be the location. It was breathtakingly beautiful and we feel so blessed to have had our ceremony there. It will forever be a special place to us; where we got married by my father and in the presence of our family. We love that we got to be our adventurous selves, have a stunning scenery, share our bite of the Cinnabon, and soak up the love of our families!

Share any additional details you’d like us to know about your event!

We chose to use Simply Eloped for our intimate wedding! They were super helpful and helped answer all of our questions. They also set us up with our photographer, videographer, and day-of coordinator. They have the best selection of vendors and we had a lot of fun as they captured our day!

Vendor Credits