Rustic DIY Vintage Chic Wedding At The Rio Grande Winery In Mustard & Navy

I love those moments when  I develop wedding crushes as I put together a feature.  Today’s gorgeous rustic DIY fete fits that bill perfectly for me from the way that the story was told through the artful eye of Latisha Lyn Photography to the couple, Jenae Olson & Roderick Mendoza, who I find supremely enchanting.  When I first got back the commentary from Jenae on her wedding day and saw a solid block of info regarding their story, I initially thought, oh my!  As I read through all the back story, I am pretty sure I fell in love right along with them only to learn there is the most amazing video of their proposal as a bonus!  As it turns out Roderick is something of an amateur photographer and managed to create the most heart string strumming video, all while hiking around Lost Lake leading up to and including his proposal.  The beauty of it all is that it is simply just the two of them, no flash mobs, nothing over the top, just Jenae & Roderick along the shore of the lake while the rain is softly falling, the moment preserved in its entirety.  I dare you not to fall in love right along with them!  Naturally there wedding was just as special, just as touching, heart felt & full of gorgeous smiles and laughter.  The couple put on a terrific DIY affair filled with burlap, vintage bottles, old suitcases all accented by hand done wild flower arrangements under the guise of a designer family friend.  Latisha Lyn Photography is an equal player in making their day such a gorgeous memory, capturing moments in a stunning moody light.  Enjoy this treat of a wedding, as I know you will, and be sure to check out their proposal video {link in the Novella of the Bride}!


Novella of the Bride…

I was born and raised in Las Cruces, my husband was born and raised in El Paso, TX. We didn’t meet each other until my sophomore year in college at NMSU. Roderick had attended New Life School of Worhsip in Colorado Springs a few years previously, and had stuck around to intern after he completed the program. My brothers attended the school the year that he interned, and they all quickly became  friends. Roderick stayed in Colorado and continued working while my brothers returned to New Mexico. Providentially, Roderick ended up coming back to El Paso to work at a church as a worship leader. Meanwhile, I had discovered a passion for music and had begun to lead music for a campus organization called Cru. My brother, Matt, had been asked to play at a benefit show at a church in El Paso, and he asked Luke (my other brother) and I to play with him. We agreed and went to El Paso. Roderick’s band was also playing at this benefit… a fact that my brothers liked to point out. My brothers had sat my sister and I down (I suppose it wouldv’e helped if I clarified the members of my family ahead of time. There are four children in my family, of which I am the youngest. Luke is the oldest, followed by Matt and then Heidi, and then me.) to tell us that they loved Rod, wanted him to be a part of our family, so one of us had to date him. I didn’t really give it any thought since I’d never met the guy and abdicated the honor to my sister. When we walked into the church, Rod’s band was soundchecking, and I immediately regretted telling my sister that she could go for it with this Rod fellow that I knew nothing about. My first impression; the boy could dress (a rare commodity in the Southwest) and sing and looked really hot doing it.

We were introduced and exchanged pleasantries, of course I played it cool, but deep down know I knew why my brothers wanted one of us Olson girls to date him. After we both played, we talked for a bit and then I returned to Las Cruces. However, my brother Matt had organized a concert at his church and conveniently Rod’s band was playing at it. That night he asked for my number and I was on cloud nine. We hung out here and there, but I spent that summer in Vail, Colorado with Cru on a “summer project.” When I got back to school that fall for my junior year, I bumped into him at our campus Starbucks. I ended up accompanying him to lunch with my brother, Matt. My brother was planning a youth retreat and Rod’s band was playing at it. Unfortunately his friend who played keys, would be late to the retreat, and I was commissioned to play keys Friday night. Somehow I conceded and stumbled through the set. We spent a lot of time together and got to know each other and by the next week were making plans to see each other again. We started dating offically in November of 2011 and spent a lot of money on gas to go see each other as often as we could. My senior year arrived with chaos in the forecast. I was taking 18 hours each semester and I hadn’t planned very wisely, so my schedule was packed. Rod was getting more and more responsibilities at his church and he was busier than ever.

Somehow,we managed to make it work, even if it meant a couple of hours just talking over coffee, or skyping from our respective towns. As my graduation present, my dad took my sister and I to Portland, OR to run a half marathon and go backpacking. I had invited Rod to come with us, but he didn’t think he would be able to take off work… or so he said. In reality he had concocted an elaborate scheme. He flew to Portland on a later flight and surprised me the next morning by picking me up at 7 AM and driving me out to Lost Lake (it’s about two hours away from Portland) his elaborate plan consisted of us kayaking and having a picnic…. unfortunately the rain kept us from doing much of anything… so we wandered around the gorgeous lake, mostly portected by the canopy of the trees. Along with being extremely talented as a musician, my husband is also really good at taking pictures and shooting video. So I wasn’t at all weirded out that he brought his camera with us on our trek. He proposed at the lake and got the whole thing on camera! You can watch the video of the proposal here. We both knew that we didn’t want to be engaged long. so we had just over four months to plan the wedding. Our engagement flew by and before you know it September 28th arrived!

I knew that I wanted an outdoor wedding. It is more my style and I think outdoor weddings always look better in pictures. The house I grew up in and that my parents still live in, is literaly 5 minutes from the winery, so it also had a sentimental place in my heart. It represented what I identified as home. In addition, it had a gorgeous view of the Organ Mountains! The owner was also pretty easy going with decor, so it was an empty canvas for what I had in mind.

My theme was vintage meets rustic. We had lots and lots of burlap and mason jars. My centerpieces were mason jars filled with candles or white hydrangeas set around on on top of old books. I also borrowed a lot of old suitcases and trunks that were set around the winery with more flowers or vases. My friend, Joanne Emerick, is an interior designer, so she provided me with a ton of unique and old special additions like the candelabra on stage or the old window panes I used as the backdrop. I think the vibe from the wedding was very relaxed.

A Little Help From Their Friends ~ My father-in-law married us. My brothers played music before the wedding as well during the communion portion of the wedding. As I said before, Joanne Emerick was the creative mastermind behind most of the decorations. I had ideas or inspirations, but she made them realities. Another friend, Anne Perez, was my wedding coordinator. She thinks of everything! Little things that hadn’t even crossed my mind, she had questions or helpful suggestions for. My mom helped decorate and plan a ton as did my bridesmaids. My husband’s cousin took over as emcee which was a huge help! My husband and I also asked some couples that we really admire to give us a piece of advice or blessing at the reception, that was really special to us!

Bride’s Favorite Moment: “After some thought, I think that my most favorite part of the wedding was right after Rod and I walked down the aisle together as husband and wife, we went into the wine tasting room and had maybe ten or fifteen seconds with just us two. We hugged and cried and laughed and kissed! I think it made everything real. We were finally married! All of the months of driving back and forth, the few stressful months of planning the wedding……all of those were a thing of the past and well worth it to get to the point that we were at. It was also really nice to just be alone for a few precious seconds, because the rest of the day we were surrounded by people.”

Parting Words ~ I remember when I was engaged, a married friend told me to enjoy the process. I couldn’t believe that she told me that! Did she understand how incredibly stressed I was? Planning a wedding had not become an ejnoyable process and I felt overwhelmed most of the time. But looking back, I would give the same advice to a soon to be bride. You will never be engaged to this person or plan a wedding with this person, so even if it is stressful, enjoy the time that you have together and be intentional. In the big scheme of things centerpieces and wedding colors don’t compare to a life with the person you love.

Vendor Love

Venue: Rio Grande Winery  | Wedding Dress: Vera Wang  | Bridesmaid Dresses: Mix Matched per Bridesmaids | Shoes: Antonio Melani  | Hair: Tristan Nabours  | Makeup: Bride  | Groom’s Attire: River Island  | Invitations: Minted | Music: Bride’s brothers {Luke & Matt Olson} played before wedding & playlist was made for reception  | Florist: DIY per Bride & friends | Caterer: Andele Restaurant  | Baker: The Cake Shop  | Wedding/Event Planner: Anne Perez | Photographer: Latisha Lyn Photography