Imagine exchanging your wedding vows, with only your beloved dogs as witnesses, and mountain peaks and flowing waterfalls as your backdrop. Well, as our real wedding couple, Stephanie and Mitchell, are not only desperately in love with each other, but the mountains too, so decided to say their ‘I dos’ in their favourite place on earth with only their furbabies by their side. The couple wrote their own vows and kept the style elegant and contemporary, and every moment was captured by photographer Matt Umland. Let us transport you to Colorado, USA for an epically romantic elopement in the mountains.
Doggies Bruce and Oliver were all decked out for the very special day as their humans began by penning their vows hand in hand.
Stephanie and Mitchell tied the knot in the Colorado mountains in the October sunshine and share a love story that began with love at first sight – on social media! Matt explains: “I saw Stephanie‘s Instagram and she was the most beautiful woman I’ve ever seen. She had this sense about her like she didn’t care who was watching… and she was going to dance! I thought: “Why not? What’s the worst thing that can happen – she says no to me?” So I sent her a suave message asking her out. After getting to know each other a little more, a few days later we went on a sushi date. We locked eyes at the restaurant and we both agree it was love at first sight!”
Matt knew that Stephanie was the love of his life, but the proposal was just about saved from disaster! “I was incredibly nervous. I’ve never asked anyone to marry me let alone be this close and vulnerable with another person. The morning of the proposal we went on a hike in Estes Park, Colorado. I held the ring in my bag the whole climb up Deer Mountain. It was snowing and I lost one of my spikes, so climbing in the snow was a doozy. We got to the top, I told Stephanie I wanted to eat some snacks and look at the view. As she was getting the snacks, I set up my phone so it could record the moment. Stephanie thought I was getting more pictures from our vacation with no idea what would happen next. I moved the ring to my side pocket when I set the camera up, so that when I would drop to a knee, the ring would be ready. As I twisted over, the ring box fell out of my pocket! My instincts quickly grabbed the tumbling grey box as it reached the edge of the peak. I luckily saved the ring from going off the side of a mountain and turned towards her and told her exactly how I feel. There wasn’t anyone in the universe I’d want to be with day in and day out. Her reaction was perfect. Her tears were unforgettable. Her love for me on that day made me feel ten feet tall!”
Now, that is what a first look photo is all about – Mitchell’s reaction had us tearing up! An emotional, private and touching moment between Stephanie and Mitchell, just the two of them in the love bubble of their magical mountain wedding day.
The outdoorsy couple searched for the perfect cabin for months for their mountain wedding! Breckenridge ended up being the ideal location for the backyard mountain views they wanted with modern interior updates to the cabin. Stephanie, the breathtaking bride wore a simplistic yet utterly chic Jenny Yoo wedding gown, with a mesmerising low back and train. Her hair feel in loose waves and she complemented her pared-back style with a bouquet full of neutral florals and fluffy pampas.
The most special moment of the day was the self-solemnising ceremony surrounded by the incredible scenery and their two furry guests of honour! “We wanted to start our lifelong commitment together on a positive note with as little stress as possible. Being able to exchange our unique vows privately was something so incredibly special. We both wrote our own vows and it made our ceremony incredibly emotional and beautiful. We couldn’t have imagined exchanging our vows anywhere else. There is something so special about feeling so small together in such a vast landscape,” they say.
When we asked our real wedding couple for the inspiration behind their aesthetic, Stephanie and Mitchell, say it was the Rocky Mountains! “We’re an adventurous, outdoorsy couple, but we love to say we “clean up good”. We kept the suit and dress very simple and elegant so that it wouldn’t take away from the beautiful mountain landscape. We wanted to feel very present and we accomplished that by going in with a simple aesthetic. There wasn’t much to fuss over the day and we’re so thankful for that!”
When it came to priorities, the most important element about the wedding was that it was solely about them as a couple. “We didn’t want a situation where we were too busy or stressed on our special day to even enjoy a piece of cake.We fell in love with the mountains together three years ago. It only made sense that our special wedding day was solidified where we finally found peace. We took these concepts and decided on eloping in Breckenridge,” they say.
The newlyweds ditched the rule book and have zero regrets about doing it their own way. Their advice for those who may be thinking of following the same path is to be 100 per cent selfish! “This day is about celebrating your love. Make your dreams come true and don’t worry about making everyone else happy!” There’s no arguing with that!
Once the wedding day came to an end, instead of packing their bags to the next destination for a honeymoon, they stayed nestled in their dreamy mountain cabin. “We decided to spend a week in the cabin after saying our vows. The idea of rushing off to travel more sounded like too much stress! So we did exactly what we wanted to do, which was relaxing in the mountains with our dogs,” they say.
A very special thank you to Matt Umland, Stephanie and Mitchell for showcasing their dreamy elopement in the beautiful Colorado mountains with us! There are tonnes more gorgeous photos in the gallery below!
Are you thinking of eloping? Check out How To Plan An Elopement: 14 Dos & Don’ts You Need To Read right here!