Guest Post: Xtratufs, pistols, mountain peaks: Four truly-Alaskan weddings


By Erin Velander Being born and raised in Alaska, I wanted to plan a wedding that was both unique and had a touch of the wildness that I love so much about our state. Never did I imagine that I would be lucky enough to plan Alaskan weddings for a living!  But here I am, fortunate enough to be a part of many couple’s lives and their wedding journeys.  If there is something I’ve learned it’s that Alaskans are creative and free-thinking people.  No two weddings here are ever the same and in this independent-minded state, we certainly don’t follow rules.  A wedding in the middle of nowhere that’s fully catered and has glamping amenities?  Sure. You just might have to transport guests via plane or an ATV.  No big deal. Get married on a glacier, just the two of you, and then throw a rip-roaring party at your family’s cabin in the woods with friends and family?  Yes, please.  In honor of wedding season in Alaska, here are some photo tours of my favorites.  Enjoy!

An Arctic Valley Love Story:

Sarah and Ben are laid back, adventurous and love the outdoors.  With a large amount of out of town guests Alpenglow Lodge was a wonderful option to feel isolated and centered in a pristine Alaskan setting while still being easy to get to and have amenities like yummy catering and indoor reception space.  We used lots of birch wood, wildflowers and accented with a navy, magenta and ivory color palette.  The trick with a venue like this is letting the scenery take center stage and then make small design choices to accentuate the beauty!  And having a wonderful photographer, like Sugar Six Photography, to capture it all is a must!

Sugar Six Photography Sugar Six Photography SSP_6549 Sugar Six Photography DSC_5156 SSP_6888 Sugar Six Photography Sugar Six Photography SSP_7292 Sugar Six Photography DSC_5931 DSC_5915 SSP_7470 Coordination and Design: Blomma Designs  Photography: Sugar Six Photography  Floral: Bloomsbury Blooms  Ceremony: St. Andrew’s Catholic Church  Reception: Alpenglow Lodge  Catering: Master’s Catering   Cake: Midnight Sun Cakery  Decor: Special Events Alaska

A Big Lake Bash:

Lindsey and Reid are the epitome of a fun loving and sophisticated couple!  They have extremely good taste and Lindsey wanted her wedding to be country rustic, but still remain beautiful.  The outdoor setting offered a backdrop with gorgeous lake views and we even saw Denali poke through on their wedding day.  Bright simple florals, a DIY s’mores bar and a fun photo booth with props made this wedding a bash worth remembering.  The groom and groomsmen even took a “dip” in the lake when we were wrapping up the festivities!

Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Paul Dudley Photography Coordination and Styling: Blomma Designs  Photography: Paul Dudley Photography  Floral: Bloomsbury Blooms  Tents and Specialty Decor: Special Events Alaska  Ceremony and Reception: Sunset View Resort  Photo Booth: Photo Booth of Anchorage

A Homer love story:

Well hey, this is yours truly.  My husband and I wanted to have a wedding that was small in size but big on fun.  Homer is one of our favorite places on earth so naturally we thought it was perfect for our wedding.  Bishop’s Beach made our ceremony breathtaking and a visit to the Salty Dawg for Honey Whiskey was a necessity to celebrate after.  We rented private cabins because we didn’t want to adhere to any rules, like a time limit, and had a good ol’ time dancing with friends and family into the wee hours of the morning.  Homer is relaxed and gorgeous.  Two very important words when planning your Alaskan wedding!

Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design E&M125+-+Copy+-+Copy Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design E&M015+-+Copy-1 Alaska Photography and Design Coordination and Design: Blomma Designs  Photography: Alaska Photography and Design  Ceremony: Bishop’s Beach  Reception: Alaska Adventure Cabins  Catering: Master’s Catering  Cake and Desserts: Two Sister’s Bakery  Makeup: Alaska Makeup Team

 Captain Crazy Ray and His Fisherwoman:

Brenda and Captain Crazy Ray are really the essence of a true Alaskan couple.  They spend their summers in Whittier chartering their fishing business, Crazy Ray’s Adventures, and spend the rest of the year hunting, four wheeling, snow machining and having other adventures.  This was a styled shoot and we collaborated with Alaska Photography and Design, Bagoy’s and Alaska Makeup Team to create a wedding that would ring true with all Alaskans.  Birch wood, halibut sized fish hooks, Xtra Tuffs, salmon chocolate and fishing off of the dock.  It doesn’t get better than this!

Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Alaska Photography and Design Inspiration and Styling: Blomma Designs  Photgraphy: Alaska Photography and Design  Floral: Bagoy’s  Makeup: Alaska Makeup Team  Models: Captain Crazy Ray and Brenda of Crazy Ray’s Adventures  Chocolates: Hot Hot Chocolate Shop Erin Velander owns Blomma Designs, a local wedding planning and event design company based in Anchorage with a passion for Alaska, pretty things and creativity.

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Julia O’Malley is a journalist who lives in Anchorage. She writes about culture, family, home, the environment and food in Alaska.

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