Destination Wedding at The Ridge in Asheville, NC

I have been SUCH a procrastinator on sharing this wedding. But now that I can – I can finally announce that it was featured on the front page of Style Me Pretty! Saddle up, besties; this is a long one!

I have known Liz since she was about 16 years old. I met her when I was photographing her older sister’s wedding (I know they’re going to hate me for re-linking these but at least I didn’t post the toes video!) I initially met this bubbly, charismatic teenager at Melissa’s engagement session at Vizcaya, but we slowly became closer over the years as my friendship with Melissa grew! Life always takes some weird twists, and I found myself with the family again to celebrate Melissa’s second wedding in the Bahamas! Lizy had grown from an awkward (sometimes) teen to a wonderfully funny young woman! I dubbed myself an honorary sister of the girls and we’ve stayed close.

So when Melissa called me about a “photography question” I knew something was up! Sure enough, Ed would be proposing to Liz and she put me on notice! The “official” text came just a few hours later and I couldn’t wait to start working with one of my favorite families again!

Their original plans started with a destination wedding in Napa Valley, so I found myself in Miami for a weekend of wedding planning and a rooftop engagement session! But as their venue tours came around, Northern CA found itself in the midst of raging forest fires and we had to quickly change plans. I encouraged them to bring in destination planning expert Rae, from Silk & Sabal, to help them. They invited me to go tour venues with them in Asheville, NC so I did some research and found a couple I loved. I joined them in October 2020 for a much-needed break and a whirlwind girls weekend (plus Ed) to scout some spots!

Our first stop ended up being the winner (although we really attempted to find anything to compete). The Ridge was everything they were looking for – private, quiet and stunning, this little chateau in the mountains with the most picturesque ceremony backdrop was absolutely perfect.

The wedding weekend was amazing – from a rehearsal dinner at the historic Omni Asheville, to their wedding day and morning-after brunch, family and friends joined them for a perfect destination celebration.

The Details

Every single detail was carefully handcrafted so I want to share a few of my favorites!

  1. Two Peas created a beautiful custom monogram and invitation suite that perfectly captured the couple. Their dog, Cash, was front and center and surrounded by special pieces of their lives: a horse (for Liz’s equestrian therapy), Chess Piece (for Ed’s dad), Orange (for their Florida background) and a Butterfly (for Liz’s grandpa, Avi). Not only was the monogram included on the stationery, but also as a custom tea towel, apron for the staff, and fabric ceremony sign.
  2. Liz and Ed’s wedding day attire was the perfect combination of sweet, sexy and modern! Liz and I had a TIME finding the perfect wedding gown for her (I’m included in this ball of stress because it was probably the craziest part of helping her!) After panicking over the gown she purchased, she went back to try some more options and landed on this amazing Lazaro with a detachable skirt. I knew as soon as she texted it to me that it was “the one” – not only did she look incredible, but it was exactly what she said she was looking for! And Ed didn’t disappoint either – wearing a fully custom white and black tuxedo!
  3. Their interactive escort cards were actually a beautiful champagne display on a hedge wall outside of the reception. Each glass had an acrylic drink stirrer made by Andi Mejia Co with the guest’s name and table number etched on it. It was perfect for a cool sip of bubbly before the festivities!
  4. Finally, I adored their late-night coffee cart! Hand-crafted iced-lattes, coffees and so much more all wrapped in a custom drink sleeve with the couple’s monogram. It was beautiful outside (albeit a little warm) and the iced coffee under the market lights was a perfect ending to a perfect day!

The Ridge, Asheville NC

At the ceremony, guests were escorted from the transportation and given custom Sangria cocktails (a cool sip for this hot summer day). A favorite moment was actually something we saw much later – while editing their images! Right as Liz and Ed were announced, we captured a monarch butterfly directly over Liz. Butterflies have always been a sign from her grandfather, who Liz was incredibly close to and passed away.

The reception was held at a separate building at the venue, a beautiful chateau with floor length windows all around it that could be opened up to let the night air in. The head table was placed under a pergola that was adorned with greenery and florals to perfectly match the florals on the guest tables. Since Liz and Ed are from Miami, they wanted to bring a little bit of Miami to North Carolina! Incorporating both Cuban and Puerto Rican roots, their Hora Loca included drummers, Samba dancers and amazing music! The night was spent dancing, and was complete with an outfit change. Lizy went from her fitted gown to a super cute white romper to finish off the night on the dance floor!

I can’t possibly end this ridiculously long blog post without an equally long thank you to Melissa, Liz and her entire family. It’s been over a decade of knowing you – and every year brings me new adventures! Meeting Joe and Ed have been an equal joy – and I can see why they fit in so well with your family! To Tony and Lourdes – thank you for always taking in Anthony and me and treating us like part of your crew. Thank you for always (always) feeding me, letting me in on all the nuances of being Cuban and pretending like there’s a budget when I recommended my favorite vendors :) So whenever you’re all ready – I’m ready for our next adventure together!! xoxo Kristen

Featured on the Cover of Style Me Pretty: Ethereal Romance In The Mountains Of North Carolina

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