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A Colorful, Whimsical Wedding at a Private Estate in Sonoma, California

Karin Fisher (27 and a PhD student in physics) met Benjamin Shepperson while moving out of her rented room in Aarhas, Denmark. Ben, a native of Englan

Karin Fisher (27 and a PhD student in physics) met Benjamin Shepperson while moving out of her rented room in Aarhas, Denmark. Ben, a native of England, was moving in, and happened to be studying physics at the same school. “We started going to pub quizzes together, and the rest is history,” Karin says. When it came to choosing colors for their wedding, these elemental experts were attracted to reds, yellows and teals. “We really like bright colors, especially in the fire color spectrum,” Karin says. For their wedding, which took place at a friend’s private estate in Sonoma, California, Karin and Ben personalized the day’s traditions to reflect their relationship. “Ben's parents walked him down the aisle, and my parents walked me down as well, creating a spirit of equality,” Karin says. “This was something that was important to me because, while I loved getting married to Ben, I personally struggled to reconcile the historically patriarchal traditions that go along with it. This was our way of feeling equal.” The couple’s individuality shined through numerous other details, including Karin’s brilliantly nontraditional red ombre wedding gown, the couple’s personalized vows and a specially brewed beer. “For the ceremony, don't give into societal pressure if it doesn't feel right. Same goes with all the other aspects,” Karin says. “Do what feels right for you.” —Carolyn Meers

Ben's groomsmen wore cheery orange and pink boutonnieres to match the bridesmaids' flower crowns.
Shotgun Floral Studio in Berkeley, California, conceptualized all the day's flower arrangements based on the bright tones Karin and Ben shared. "We gave them a color scheme—fire colors—and told them we didn't want it looking too organized. They did an amazing job," Karin says.
These helpful wooden signs by Bee Curious Designs fit the naturalistic theme and helped guide guests around the private estate in Sonoma, California.
"For the ceremony we chose a forested area under the arches of the trees. We wanted a ceremony site that was not over decorated," Karin says. "We did not want to take away from the ceremony itself or the space itself."
Karin's stunning red ombre dress was complemented by Ben's cool navy suit.
After the outdoor ceremony, guests picked up handcrafted beers and cocktails from the bar in this rustic structure—which sported an overhanging trellis that blossomed with all the right colors.
A breezy, shaded outdoor lounge area allowed guests to kick back with a beer or a cocktail after the ceremony. Wine barrels were topped with bundles of bright blossoms.
Culinary Eye caterers in San Francisco, California, matched the event's bright palette with vivid appetizers during cocktail hour.
Bright teal table runners covered long wooden banquet tables at the outdoor reception and were topped with bright yellow and red blossoms—all keeping with the day's fire color spectrum.
To reinforce the buttoned-down atmosphere, Karin and Ben opted for a family-style meal, created by Culinary Eye in San Francisco, California. "People especially liked the farro and goat cheese salad, but pretty much everything we had was a hit," Karin says.
Karin and Ben's wedding cake from Crisp Bake Shop in Sonoma, California, was adorned with orange and red rose blossoms, echoing the day's vivid palette. "Practice cutting cakes together," Karin says. "Nobody tells you that cutting a cake, two people as one, is actually quite challenging. Seriously, practice."
After dinner guests were offered cookies and brownies, served on cake stands.