This wonderful and adventurous couple just celebrated their “I DO’s” in August. We have their love story from engagement to the big day. Be sure to read about the many ways they incorporated personalized details throughout the day to reflect who they are as a couple. Enjoy the full album here. Congrats Liz & Kanoa thank you for letting us be part of your beautiful story, and thank you for being part of The Preserve legacy.
Tell us a bit about your engagement.
Kanoa and I got engaged on the top of Grand Targhee Mountain in Wyoming. We had been skiing all day and it was one of those beautiful, blue bird sky days with almost no one else on the mountain. At the summit of Grand Targhee there is a beautiful view of the Teton mountain range. I had stopped to take a photo, and Kanoa suggested maybe I remove my skis. But being my independent self, I said no way - I can do this without taking them off. While I was taking a panoramic photo, I was oblivious to the fact that Kanoa had gotten down on one knee next to me! Also, I had no idea that Kanoa had pulled out the ring earlier in the day only to snap a shot of me in the foreground with the ring in his hand! It was a magical day!
You both seemed so relaxed and joyful on the big day, what are some tips you can give others about feeling relaxed on the big day?
Plan ahead and delegate. I had spent hours making sure that all of my vendors knew the exact plan for the day, and I had specifically delegated certain tasks that needed to be completed on my wedding day to family and friends. I also highly recommend a day-of wedding coordinator. She was able to handle any questions, set up flowers and decor that we couldn't do prior to the wedding day and show vendors where to set up. Kanoa and I also made a detailed timeline and shared with our vendors and bridal party so we knew we would be right on time. Kanoa and I just sat back and enjoyed every moment of the day!
We loved your overall theme and look, how did you decide on incorporating the mountains and such beautiful natural colors with the pops of blue?
I tried to stay true to who Kanoa and I are as a couple. We both love nature and wanted to use that as our main inspiration. We chose soft greens, whites, golds, blues and subtle pinks because they are true to the outdoors we are surrounded with every day. Also, I grew up adoring hydrangeas so incorporating the blue hydrangeas felt right! We ended up creating a mountain range for our place cards which we cut out of wood, painted white peaks, and wrote in which mountain (table) each guest was sitting at. We chose mountains in three states that were important to us - Kanoa from Vermont, I am from Massachusetts and we live in New Hampshire. My dad built us beautiful summit signs for each table made from wood from my parents back yard. For the guest favors, we chose candy from my favorite candy shop I grew up going to on summer vacations.
You were one of the first weddings in the new Barn, what were your thoughts on the new space?
The new barn is stunning. First of all, the beautiful large glass front doors create a dramatic entrance into the space. I love how the front area in the barn can still be separated off for cocktail hour with huge old barn doors. The bar is the perfect size and in a great location for guests to access it for a drink. We also loved how there are more bathrooms in the barn! When you enter into the main part of the barn, its hard not to have your breath taken away. From the large planked floor boards, to the stars that light up in the pergola, there is something very special about the space. There is a lot of natural light which set a beautiful scene for the evening. Also, we loved that the whole space has AC which came in handy for our August wedding. The barn is the perfect combination of new and old.
Favorite part of the weekend?
I really can't choose just one, but my favorite three would be our ceremony outside under the breathtaking old trees surrounded by everyone who we love. Second would be dancing the night away with our amazing band, The Lisa Love Experience. And third, the amazing luau and lei ceremony we had for our rehearsal dinner on the property Friday night.
How did you incorporate Hawaiian traditions?
Kanoas mothers side of the family are from Hawaiian decent and Kanoa spent several years living in Hawaii growing up. We wanted to incorporate this into our wedding and we decided that hosting a traditional luau pig roast rehearsal dinner would be the right way to go. We had a caterer come and cook the pig on site and brought traditional Luau sides. We set up the luau down in the tent where we had space to have a dance floor for our Hula dance lessons taught by Kanoas mom. We had a lei exchange ceremony with real leis which had been flown in from Hawaii that morning. The lei ceremony is traditionally is performed during the wedding ceremony to symbolize eternal love and respect. Leis were also given to our parents, grandparents and bridal party to demonstrate love, respect and gratitude. Our fathers received kukui nut leis, mothers and grandmothers double strands of white and purple orchids, the bridesmaids single purple orchid leis, groomsmen received banana leaf leis, Kanoa had a banana leaf and orchid lei, lastly, I received a double white orchid lei. There wasn't a dry eye in the group at the end of the ceremony! Such a special memory.
Advice for future couples?
Plan plan plan! Make sure you are not responsible for anything other than getting married on the day of your wedding! Also, get a videographer! The day flies by and you will be able to look back on your videos for years to come. Lastly, stay true to who you are. Create a day that is everything special to you!
Photographer | Kristen Phelps
Dress, Veil, Grooms Suit | Madeleine’s Daughter Portsmouth, NH
Bridesmaids Dresses | David’s Bridal
Groomsmen Vests | Banana Republic
Flowers | Whole Foods Bedford, NH
Cake | Ampersand Bakery
Catering | The Common Man
Hair | Melissa Scott Hair
Makeup | Makeup New England Kelly Ford
Videographer | Films by Iris
Band | Lisa Love Experience
Transportation | First Student
Event Rentals | Showcase Event Rentals
Rehearsal Dinner Catering | Well Dressed Hog