An Elegant, Rustic Wedding at Crooked Willow Farms in Larkspur, Colorado

For their spring wedding, Emma Kate Harbin (24 and a manger for a wine and spirits distributor) and Justin Young (31 and a member of the U.S. Special

For their spring wedding, Emma Kate Harbin (24 and a manger for a wine and spirits distributor) and Justin Young (31 and a member of the U.S. Special Forces) planned an elegant vintage-inspired affair with a rustic twist. While both Emma Kate and Justin are Texas natives, they agreed that a Colorado celebration was definitely in order. The state is where their love story unfolded and its beautiful natural landscape only added to the allure.

Wanting a backdrop for their spring soiree that exuded romance and natural beauty, the pair were instantly drawn to Crooked Willow Farms in Larkspur, Col. “It is a gorgeous property with picturesque red barns and stables, views of the forest, a courtyard lit with bistro lights and an original loft from the 1920s that we used for our ceremony,” says Emma Kate. With the help of Ashley Nicole Events and the florists at Newberry Brothers Inc., the pair put their personal stamp on the venue with a color palette of neutral, blue, blush, cream, gray and gold hues and garden-inspired arrangements of lush blooms. “The venue is stunning by itself, so we wanted to accent and enhance the natural elements,” says Emma Kate.

While the couple originally planned for an outdoor ceremony, unexpected rain moved the celebration indoors to the loft. The intimate space proved to be the ultimate setting for their “I do’s” with it’s exposed wooden beams, barn wood walls and wagon wheel chandeliers. A eucalyptus garland and panels of billowy white fabric framed the couple as they exchanged vows, while flickering candles cast a warm, ambient glow over them. A close friend officiated and completely customized the ceremony for Emma Kate and Justin to give the proceedings a totally personalized feel. “It was so unique. The ceremony was an incredible combination of the funny parts of our relationship and the unconditional love we have for one another,” says Emma Kate.

The reception was jam-packed full of surprises, from the newlyweds’ choreographed first dance to a live performance by Emma Kate’s a capella group and a photo booth packed with silly props that brought everyone together. “We loved seeing the funny combinations of guests, especially towards the end of the night,” says Emma Kate. “My grandma from Georgia and Justin’s buddies from the army in one picture and Justin’s dad with a couple of my friends from college in another — pretty funny stuff.” A tip for the taking from Emma Kate: “Choose what is really important tot you and focus on that. No one will remember all the tiny details the next day and it can free up some budget for you to spend on what is really important. Highlight your favorite things; for us it was good, drinks and the atmosphere. For example, we chose to have hammered copper mugs to elevate Justin’s signature drink, a twist on the classic Moscow Mule, instead of upgrading our silverware.”

And from Justin: “Take an active role in the planning process, it will relieve your partner of some unnecessary stress and make them feel like you care. That being said, know when to back off too! Think of it as planning a huge party for all your friends and family, that is what really made me excited to get involved.”

Watercolor florals, kraft paper and whimsical script set a romantic, rustic tone for Emma Kate and Justin’s invitations, giving guests a sneak peak at the spring soiree to come.
When it came to her bridesmaids’ attire, Emma Kate wanted all of the girls to feel comfortable, look great and have something they could potentially wear again. Jenny Yoo’s Wren dress offered classic, timeless design that did just that. To differentiate her maid and matrons of honor from the rest of her bridesmaids who wore a soft shade of gray, Emma Kate had them don a playful shade of pale pink. The girls accessorized with vintage opal bracelets, a gift from Emma Kate, and their own nude pumps.
While the couple had originally planned to host their ceremony outside on Crooked Willow’s expansive property, unexpected rain brought the celebration indoors to Lola’s Loft. The barn wood walls, exposed beams and wagon wheel chandeliers provided all the rustic charm and romantic Emma Kate and Justin had hoped for and more. “Honestly, I am glad it rained because this space was better than the original plan,” says Emma Kate. “It was intimate, romantic, unexpected and inspiring — truly everything I had dreamed.” A eucalyptus ceremony arch, billowy white fabric and dozens of ivory pillar candles created a dreamy backdrop for the couple’s “I do’s” and heightened the overall feeling of romance and elegance.
Emma Kate and Justin asked a close friend to officiate the ceremony, a touch that brought an ultra person feel to the proceedings. “He interviewed us each, so he could completely customize the ceremony and our vows,” says Emma Kate. “It was so unique. The ceremony was an incredibly combination of the funny parts of our relationship and the unconditional love we have for one another.” Another detail that gave the ceremony a personalized touch? The couple’s faithful canine, Draco, joining them at the altar. “He was so good, sitting quietly in the front row the whole ceremony. After Kevin announced us as husband and wife, we kissed and in the silence right before the crowd erupted with cheers, he jumped up and started barking! It was the perfect reaction and we couldn’t stop laughing.”
Using the same floral motif throughout all of their stationery details created a sense of cohesion throughout the day. As guests made their way into the reception, they found the way to their seats with floral escort cards placed on a birch log display that tied into the day’s rustic undertone.
As fans of entertaining, Emma Kate and Justin made food and drink a high priority.  The pair kicked off cocktail hour with a selection of craft beer and wine, as well as two signature cocktails dreamed up by Ashley Nicole Events: a Southwest Sparkler with prosecco, pomegranate, blood orange and rosemary simple syrup and the Texas Mule, a bourbon Moscow Mule with muddled blackberries.
Though the decor set an elegant tone for the evening’s celebrations, Emma Kate and Justin made sure the soiree was jam-packed with fun surprises. The couple kicked off the post-dinner festivities with a choreographed first dance and her father surprised everyone with a live performance by Emma Kate’s favorite a capella group, CU Buffoons. There was also a photo booth that provided fun an entertainment all night long. “We loved seeing the funny combinations of guests, especially towards the end of the night. My grandma from Georgia and Justin's buddies from the army in one picture and Justin's dad with a couple of my friends from college in another — pretty funny stuff!”
“When we met our florist, I couldn’t even fathom the flower possibilities we had! I only had one must for flowers and that was cream-colored roses, my sorority Delta Gamma’s flower,” says Emma Kate. “I became a Delta Gamma my freshman year of college at the University of Colorado at Boulder and it shaped a lot of who I am. I hold the values I learned there so close and I adore the best friends I met there.” Design Works by Dave and Mike struck the perfect balance of romantic and glam styles with their arrangements of peonies, roses and stock flowers in gilded vases to create an air of timeless elegance. The vases reflected the light from small votives candles across the table, delivering undeniable warmth and ambience to the room.
Each of the reception tables was topped with a unique floral arrangement to bring and element of texture and drama to the decor. On the head table, Design Works by Dave and Mike laid a lush green garland punctuated with colorful bunches of roses, peonies, stock and eucalyptus atop a crocheted lace table runner for the idea balance of romance and old world charm.
“One thing I really loved was the tall centerpieces,” says Emma Kate. “We chose to leave the stems expose, which I think added to the rustic, natural feel I wanted to come through the decor.
Emma Kate and Justin went took a playful approach to their wedding cake, choosing four different flavors for each layer of their four-tiered buttercream cake, red velvet, marble, lemon poppy seed and German chocolate.