Oak Farm Vineyards | Rustic Meets Romance at Oak Farm Vineyards

Written by Allison Hopkins for Très Fabu Event Planning and Design

Delicious autumn! My very soul is wedded to it, and if I were a bird I would fly about the earth seeking the successive autumns. ~ George Eliot
Cara Wademan had a very clear vision for her fall wedding. She imagined casual yet chic with a rustic flair; a relaxing ceremony surrounded by friends and family; a place where her guests would be free to roam the grounds; and an abundance of comfort food.

When Debra Michelle Hiebèrt of Très Fabu Event Planning and Design introduced the idea of Oak Farm Vineyards in Lodi, California, Cara was immediately sold.

“Debra found Oak Farm Vineyards, a gorgeous vineyard complete with a barn (my one request) and a touch of southern charm with a large, white plantation house,” says Wademan. “The barn reminded me a lot of the old hay barns I see at my Grandma’s house. I am also in love with white running fences, and Oak Farm has loads of them!”

Sunday, October 3, 2010 proved to be a perfect autumn day — sunny and mild with a bit of a breeze. The ceremony began at two o’clock in the afternoon and 150 people attended. Debra and Cara incorporated a variety of fall colors that complemented the natural beauty of the land. Patina green was brought out in the bridesmaids’ dresses. Oranges, greens, and ivories were shown in a variety of pumpkins of different shades (Luminas, Full Moons, Young Beauties, Autumn Golds, Marina Di Chioggias, Fairytales, Cinderellas, mini Jack o’ Lanterns, and Baby Boos). The table linens were carefully chosen — underlays of chocolate and burnt tangerine, and burlap overlays that were woven with a swirl design.

The floral and decorative arrangements provided by Shelley McArdle of Floral Artistry incorporated a variety of wheat and leaves, roses in red and apricot tones, cream and orange chrysanthemums, sunflowers, and other yellow hues.

“Shelley listened to my requests and she executed them 1,000 times better than I could have imagined,” says Wademan. “It really touched me that she went to the trouble of searching antique stores for a broach for my bridal bouquet. She went above and beyond.”

The wedding was performed by Pastor Kevin Brown of Lodi. He successfully created a relaxing atmosphere (the couple’s request) while they exchanged vows in a short ceremony. Six bridesmaids and three groomsmen supported the happy couple at the altar. The groom (Mike) was dressed in a classic black and white tuxedo, and the bride…

“I wanted a gown that was fun and flirty and that’s exactly what I got!” says Wademan. “It was a couture gown that has lots of vertical ruffles down the skirt. I loved it. I think I now know what a princess at Disneyland feels like with everyone wanting to take their picture with you.”

Dinner was displayed beautifully—a rustic buffet with burlap runners, wine boxes, and an antique drying rack that housed the wrapped utensils. Randy Peters Catering created a wonderful meal that consisted of wild rice stuffed butternut squash; corn on the cob (roasted in the husk) with a chili butter sauce and topped with parmesan cheese; garlic sirloin roast; freshly baked artisan rolls; cornbread stuffing; and a chilled green salad.

“People can’t stop talking about the food at the wedding,” says Wademan. “I couldn’t have imagined a meal that better fit the season. They really put a lot of thought and effort into planning it.”

For dessert, Cara wanted every guest to have a mini cake! Cupcakes were baked by Icing on the Cupcake in five autumn flavors: vanilla, chocolate, red velvet, snicker doodle, and maple nut. They were displayed beautifully on dark copper three-tiered cupcake stands.

CinZo Photography captured all the afternoon bliss (including lawn games for the guests) and the special moments of the evening as the couple danced to live bluegrass music and mingled with their families and friends.

When the night came to an end, each guest was sent home with a special gift that was baked and packaged by the bride — a fabulous little jar of peanut brittle in honor of Cara’s grandfather who passed away a few years ago. Cara has many fond memories of making the holiday treat with her Gradfather Jack and included the special story on a tag attached to each jar.

Newlyweds Cara and Mike are extremely thankful for Debra, the Très Fabu team, and for their perfect autumnal wonderland.

“The moment I realized having a wedding planner was well worth the money was during an appointment with my caterer,” says Wademan. “They were asking questions, and all I could say was ‘I don’t know, but Debra will.’ I didn’t know if there was electricity where the dinner would be served, or where the best place for them to set up a field kitchen would be so that it would be out of view from the guests, or if there was accessible running water, etc. Debra to the rescue!”

For Debra, the event was a fun challenge. “Autumn is my absolute favorite moment of the year in northern California,” says Hiebèrt. “I just knew I could encompass her vision and pull out the best that Mother Nature has to offer, and design an autumn filled wedding that Cara would just absolutely adore!”

For more information about the vendors, please visit:

Event Planning, Design & Decor: Très Fabu Event Planning and Design, www.tresfabuevents.com

Flowers/Leaves/Wheat: Floral Artistry: www.floralartistrybyshelley.com

Photography: CinZo Celebration Photography: www.cinzophoto.com

Custom Designed Seating Chart ~ Table Names ~ Bar & Wedding Menu ~ Robyn Lyn Steward of Philosophia: www.laphilosophia.com

Cupcakes: Icing on the Cupcake: www.icingonthecupcake.com

Venue: Oak Farm Vineyards, www.oakfarmvineyards.com

Catering: Randy Peters, www.randypeterscatering.com

Video: Sheffield Media: www.sheffieldmultimedia.com

Rentals: Celebrations Elegant Party Rentals: www.CelebrationsPartyRentals.com

Linens: Mimi & Co.: www.mimiandco.com

Wedding Favor table Linen: Wildflower Linens www.wildflowerlinens.com

Wedding Hair Styling:  Renee Marquez: www.stylesbyrenee.com

Wedding Make-up Styling:  Leilani Bryan: www.makeupbyleilani.com

Wedding Favors: Cara Johnson-Wademan ~ Our fabulous bride

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