Liana’s glittery gown and a luxurious waterfall orchid bouquet combined with Jason’s classic tuxedo to bring a whole lot of class to the desert at Red Rock Canyon. They chose to marry at the chapel at Aria, but wanted to add a bit of the natural desert scenery to their wedding photos and did a post-wedding shoot with Taylored Photo Memories there.
As the sun set, the colors come alive, in Liana’s hair and in the beautiful red rocks surrounding the shoot. Just a little bit of incredibly stylish proof that you don’t have to scrimp on glamour if you elect to have a Las Vegas elopement!
VENDOR + VENUE DETAILS :
PHOTOGRAPHER . Taylored Photo Memories member of the LVW photography directory
CEREMONY VENUE . Chapel at Aria Las Vegas
BRIDAL SHOOT AT . Red Rock Canyon
FLORAL . Aria Las Vegas / BRIDAL FASHION . dress – customized gown from Caché, shoes – Betsey Johnson / HAIR + MAKEUP . by the bride
Stormy skies over Las Vegas only amplified this styled wedding shoot session at Spring Mountain Ranch. The mulit-colored scenery of the mountain range pops against the steely gray sky, and creates a dramatic backdrop for this bridal inspiration shoot.
Vintage bridal gowns from Katie Jean Designs and antique props styled by Nostalgia Resources well with the floral crown and relaxed casual look for the groom. Super pretty desert wedding style!
VENDOR + VENUE DETAILS :
PHOTOGRAPHER . Poppy La’Rue Photography & Design
SHOOT VENUE . Spring Mountain Ranch State Park
SHOOT CONCEPT . Beyond the Wanderlust / BRIDAL FASHION . dresses – Handmade Loveliness by Katie Jean / HAIR . Jessica Kersch from Hair Garage Roseburg / MAKEUP ARTIST . Malia Jeremiah / FLORAL DESIGN, STYLING + PROPS . Nostalgia Resources
Although many couples opt for the neon and architecture of The Strip or even classic downtown Las Vegas for their wedding venue, the city is surrounded by the picturesque Mojave desert.
This landscape appeals to those looking for a more natural look and feel, and there are a variety of locations from a half hour to just over an hour’s drive outside the city. These desert wedding venues are a different side to Las Vegas, with majestic geological features, sand covered vistas and desert plant life like cacti and even Joshua trees.
Doing your wedding yourself at these venues requires a little bit of homework, in that you will need to purchase a wedding permit, and arrange for a wedding photographer and wedding officiant to meet you at the venue. The best time of day, for weather and photos, is sunset.
If that seems like a hassle, there are companies such as City Wedding Tours, Las Vegas Luv Bug Weddings and Cactus and Lace who provide packages to these locations that include photographer and minister, amongst other things.
It should be noted that none of these locations is really that well-suited to a full reception (the exception being Eldorado Canyon, and I recommend you use a planner if you do so) but that cake and a little Champagne toast might be in order.
Weddings at Eldorado Canyon at Nelson
This former gold mining town is popular with couples who want to combine rustic vintage buildings and whimsical props (crashed plane or antique trucks, anyone?) with their wedding vows. Eldorado is a great spot for those seeking a rustic, retro wedding style. This “ghost town” has been featured in the movie “3000 Miles from Graceland” and offers indoor and outdoor venues for your wedding ceremony.
Details: Eldorado Canyon Mine Tours
Venues: Say your I Do’s surrounded by the antiques in the barn, or just outside amongst the cholla cacti and antique vehicles
Theme: Whimsical western with a vintage twist
Travel Time: 60 minutes south of Las Vegas
Fee: Starting at $100 for 10 people for up to two hours, $150 for up to 20 guests for up to two hours, $50 an hour after that
Inspiration: real weddings at Eldorado Canyon
Weddings at Red Rock Canyon
Red Rock is a gorgeous area just west of The Strip, boasting amazing views of — you guessed it: incredible red rock formations. The area is popular with adventure seekers and includes a scenic drive loops, 30+ miles of hiking trails, picnic areas, and a variety of outdoor activities including rock climbing, horseback riding and mountain biking. There are two fabulous outdoor spots to get married, including a scenic overlook and Calico Basin. Red Rock Canyon has been featured in the Little Vegas Wedding Venue Spotlight series.
Details: Red Rock National Conservation Area
Venues: Calico Basin offers a boardwalk surrounded by greenery and petroglyphs, while Scenic Overlook is a panoramic vista of the nearby sandstone mountain formations
Theme: Natural mountainous wonder with green details
Travel Time: 30 minutes west of Las Vegas
Fee: Wedding permit is $200, and must be arranged at least two weeks in advance
Inspiration: real weddings at Red Rock Canyon
Weddings at Valley of Fire State Park
A little more remote is the Valley of Fire, Nevada’s oldest state park with vivid red rocks, just north of Las Vegas. The dramatic whorled sandstone formations, natural arches and petrified wood as a wedding backdrop will wow you. The Valley of Fire has been seen in scenes of “Transformers” and “Planet of the Apes.”
Details: Valley of Fire State Park
Venues: There are only four approved venues for weddings at Valley of Fire: Seven Sisters, Rainbow Vista, Visitor’s Center or The Cabins. Some sites host as few 15 people, some up to 100 people
Theme: Mother Nature on fire
Travel Time: 75 minutes north of Las Vegas
Fee: Wedding permit is $100-175 depending on the size of wedding, and must be arranged at least three weeks in advance
On Friday I posted Casey and Mo’s amazing Flamingo wedding packed full of surprises, including Star Wars Stormtroopers, Elvis and showgirls at the reception to a same day vow renewal. Casey and Mo travelled all the way from Australia for their wedding, so it’s no surprise they crammed in so many amazing events into their Las Vegas visit!
Well, it may be no surprise that Casey and Mo got all dressed up again and managed a day after wedding shoot! They met up with photographer Julie Bergonz for a vibrant downtown encore wedding shoot, even making it out to the desert at Red Rock Canyon for some shots. The photos are total rock ‘n’ roll and a great addition to their wedding day portraits! (Do you think the Stormtrooper helmet was a wedding gift from Darth Vader?)
Trash the dress wedding photos are still common, but day after wedding shoots are becoming more popular, as many of you would like to save or resell your wedding gown. Some of you know I also write for another wedding website, and I just published an article on reasons to consider day after wedding photography over there today.
These sessions are a great option for couples to stretch out that wedding magic one more day and maybe visit some locations they weren’t able to get to on their wedding day, especially in Las Vegas where realistically getting desert shots, downtown shots and Strip shots in a short period of time just isn’t doable.
Mo, the beautiful bride, had this to say about their encore wedding photo session:
I was lucky enough to stumble across Julie Bergonz Photography on Craigslist of all places, and she truly is an amazing photographer. I initially hired her to do my boudoir shoot in September and fell in love with her style and just had to work with her again. I followed her work on Facebook and saw some great shoots out at the Arts District and I’ve always liked the Red Rock area for “rock the dress” shots.
The day after our wedding I had Leila and Marissa return to do my hair and makeup then we hired a chauffeured SUV through for three hours, perfectly timed to get to the Arts District and catch the sunset at Red Rock Canyon. The photos speak for themselves and are a true testament to Julie’s eye for detail and colour/light composition.
Venue and Vendor Details:
Encore Wedding Photo Session shot on location at: The Arts District, downtown Las Vegas and Red Rock Canyon // Photography: Julie Bergonz, The Sin City Shooter // Hair and Makeup: Leila and Marissa of LeiV Agency // Floral: The Palette // Transportation: Presidential Limousines // Wedding Dress: Mia Solano, 9833L
Jessica and Nicolas came from Idaho for their Las Vegas wedding, but instead of doing a wedding portraits immediately following their ceremony, they did a pre-wedding shoot. What a great idea for a first look!
They chose to do their photos in a spot that can be a bit of a hike to get to, and test drove hair and makeup looks for an intimate session at Calico Basin with Taylored Photo Memories.
When sharing their wedding, Jessica told a really sweet story about how she coped with some tragedy and heartbreak just before the wedding and how she got her dress. You have to read her sweet, sentimental story of what happened following the death of Nicolas’s grandfather and having to put down their dachshund, Bella, just ahead of the wedding. A reminder that it’s not what happens on the day of the wedding, but sometimes the events leading up to it that make the day so emotional and memorable.
From the bride, Jessica:
After we made the hardest decision of our lives and did what was best for Bella by putting her down, two days later was my appointment at Christa’s. I had made the appointment a month prior and due to all that had been happening, I almost canceled.
My friend and my mom both came to the appointment with me and while trying on gowns, a man came over and asked if he could buy my dress for me. I honestly thought he was joking, because who offers to buy a $1000+ anything for anyone they don’t know? My friend made a point to ask the man if he was actually serious when I went back into the dressing room to try on another dress and he said that he really wanted to buy my dress.
I found the perfect dress thanks to the amazing staff at Christa’s, and Mr. Angel (one of the most amazing people I have ever met) had already paid for it. It still makes me cry just writing this now. After all of this, Mr. Angel even gave us money to go have dinner before we done back to Boise that evening. I had no idea that such amazing people even existed, but I do believe he was sent to me and my family for a reason. It for sure will be a day that I will never forget.
Vendor and Venue Details:
Photographer: Taylored Photo Memories / Photo Shoot: Calico Basin at Red Rock Canyon / Reception Venue: Victoria’s Family / Wedding Dress: Alfred Angelo, 221 “Rapunzel” from Christa’s Dress Shoppe in Twin Falls, ID / Hair + Makeup: Sarah at Fairytale Hair and Makeup / Jewelry: Pritties Accessories UK / Bride’s Shoes: Custom Converse / Groom’s Suit + Menswear: Calvin Klein / Floral: The Palette / Celebrant: Flawless Ceremonies by Kymberli Smith