A Central Oregon Wedding with an Italian Villa Vibe

Malorie and Francois were married on a divine summer day in July of 2020. Their chic elegant venue located at Ranch at the Canyons in Central Oregon provided an exclusive, Italian villa-type vibe for guests to enjoy their micro wedding. Due to the pandemic, they downsized their 100+ person event to a more intimate affair with their nearest and dearest family and friends. . This occasion truly proves as another example that love always wins!

Tell us about the proposal.

Francois proposed on Christmas morning. We have a heart-shaped stone box that we leave little notes in for one another and he snuck that off our table and hid it under the tree. When we finished unwrapping our Christmas gifts I saw that our box still under the tree. He had written out the sweetest proposal that spoke about the meaning of my engagement stone Morganite (it is said to bring promise, healing, compassion, and assurance to those in love). Under all our other little notes was the ring.

What was your wedding vision, style, & attire?

I was born and raised in Oregon but Francois and I were living in Oakland, CA when we were engaged. We knew we wanted to get married outside in Central Oregon, but we also knew we didn’t want a golf course wedding. When we saw Ranch at the Canyons we both fell in love with the natural beauty and privacy of the location. The backdrop of Smith Rock was breathtaking and we loved the patio overlooking the lake. We wanted our wedding to feel romantic and elegant but also relaxed and not overstated. Once we found the venue everything else fell into place.
I absolutely loved my dress! When I was deciding on a dress I wanted something that felt romantic. I also wanted to make sure I felt like myself so I would be comfortable in the dress. I tried on a lot of different styles of dresses but ultimately fell in love with the fit and beautiful details in the Lihi Hod dress I choose.
Francois chose to wear a dark blue/black tux with a bow tie. I requested the bow tie because how often do you get to see your man in a bow tie!

What was the most important to the two of you while planning? Was there anything that you chose to splurge on or skip?

The most important thing for us when planning was to remember that at the end of the day what mattered was that we were getting married and we decided early on to do our best not to stress out about every decision, because ultimately what mattered is that we were getting married.
Because we downsized our wedding due to covid we ended up not having a band, which we had both looked forward to but with the small size of our wedding, we opted to forego the band. We splurged on my dress and we booked the rooms at the villa for one extra night for just the two of us, since we had to postpone our honeymoon it was the perfect way to have a day to ourselves to relax and take in everything that happened that weekend.

What were your favorite parts of the day? 

My (Malorie) favorite part of the day was how relaxed and calm everything felt. People talk about it being so hectic and crazy but one huge benefit to a small more intimate wedding is that you really get to take in the entire day. We didn’t ever feel rushed or stressed throughout the day, it was absolutely perfect.
Another moment I loved was when we were walking down the aisle after the ceremony we were both so happy and finally married! We took about 10 minutes to ourselves after the ceremony to let everything sink in and take in the moment; having that time to ourselves was really important to us.
I also loved our first dance, we had planned to take lessons but due to the pandemic we ended up watching youtube videos and practicing in our tiny apartment; we had so much fun during the dance and it was nice to have a moment where it felt like just the two of us.
My (Francois) favorite memory was when we were reading our vows to one another because we each wrote our own it was a very intimate moment between us.

Do you have any advice for couples planning their weddings now?

Given all the uncertainty that couples face planning a wedding right now, it’s more important than ever to come back to what feels right to you as a couple. We didn’t want to wait to get married so we downsized our wedding significantly and had a wonderful day. That decision wouldn’t be right for every couple but whatever you choose people will be there to support your decision.
For couples thinking of downsizing their wedding, we are so happy we did. A smaller wedding allowed us to spend more time with our guests and have a more relaxing day. We, of course, wish we could have had everyone attend but given the circumstances, we wouldn’t have changed a thing.
If it’s within your budget consider hiring a wedding planner. It made all the difference on the day of, we didn’t have to make any decisions on our wedding day and it kept the day stress free. Bree and the Indigo Bride team were wonderful and helped us navigate downsizing our wedding, they thought of all the little details that we may have forgotten about.

Photography: Tony Gambino | Ceremony Venue: Ranch at The Canyons | Reception Venue: Ranch at The Canyons | Event Planning: The Indigo Bride | Floral: Hey You Flowers | Wedding Cake: Too Sweet Cakes | Rentals: Curated Event Rentals | Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen | Hair: Edge Hair & Make Up | Makeup: Edge Hair & Make Up | Catering: Bleu Bite Catering | Desserts: Too Sweet Cakes | Wedding Dress: Lihi Hod | Groom’s Attire: Todd Snyder | Bride’s Shoes: Stuart Weitzman | Bridesmaid Dresses: Fame & Partners | Veil: Sara Gabriel | Jewelry: Saxon’s Fine Jewelers | Submitted via: Matchology

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