Burgundy and Gold Wowed at This Masaya Desert Ranch Wedding in Joshua Tree, California
Family was a central part of Neerellyn Hernandez (36 and a compliance officer) and Marquis Bridges’ (36 and a labor representative) “desert romance” wedding in California’s Yucca Valley. The couple, who met in middle school, got engaged at Marquis’ grandmother’s 90th birthday party. They set about planning a wedding with a mix of earth and jewel tones that celebrated their nearest and dearest. On the big day, the couple’s daughter acted as flower girl and inspired her mother’s vows. Neerellyn thanked Marquis for “not shying away from the challenges of fatherhood. You are such a present dad, and I could not be more grateful.” To cap off the heartfelt ceremony, the couple and their kids shared a group hug before decamping to the alfresco reception.
“Since the wedding was outdoors, we wanted to enhance the natural beauty with elegant yet simple tabletop pieces,” says Neerellyn. A velvet tablecloth anchored the design, while matte black plates brought an edgy vibe to the setup. The flower arrangements included scabiosa, proteas, ruscus, roses, chrysanthemums, lisianthus and amaranthus.
"For our wedding favors, we wanted something spiritual and beautiful. We wrapped palo santo, selenite and dried lavender in gold wire and white cheesecloth," shares Neerellyn. Each element in the favor bundles carried meaning. “Palo santo is traditionally used to clear negative energy and purify spaces, people and objects. It also welcomes good energy. Selenite dispels negative energy and enhances clarity, focus and creates calm. Lavender sets the intention for a peaceful, grounded energy when engaging in any sacred ceremony.”
For the intimate dinner, the couple offered citrus roast chicken, seared halibut and braised short ribs paired with rice pilaf and herbed vegetables. Afterward, guests dug into a two-tier chocolate cake with Swiss meringue buttercream and strawberry compote. The evening’s entertainment ranged from R&B to bachata and salsa tunes. The couple selected both a first and last dance song for the wedding. “That’s How Strong My Love Is,” by Otis Redding, kicked things off. “Baby,” by Ariel Pink’s Haunted Graffiti, ended the night.