Tahoe Unveiled Blog > inspiration boards

While we’d love for you and your wedding party to jump into the lake to cool down on your special day, that might have to happen pre- or post-ceremony. To beat the heat in the meantime, here are some tips and tricks that go beyond staying hydrated to prevent you from getting hot and bothered. Frizzy hair, begone; staying cool, calm and collected, come hither!

 

1. PITCH A TENT

 

We’re not talking a camping tent; we’re talking something elegant and whimsical that will create an oasis for you and your guests to escape the sun, which, at high altitude is intense. Lake Tahoe can also get windy, and a tent is a nice place for your friends and family to recenter and continue to party the night away.

 

2. WEAR AN UP-DO

 

Not only are up-dos elegant, they keep your hair under control on warm Tahoe summer days. Plus, you’ll appreciate having your locks pinned back when that Lake Tahoe breeze picks up. Practicality first!

 

3. KEEP MAKEUP TO A BARE MINIMUM

 

When you mix summertime Sierra temperatures with make-up, one thing’s for sure: less is more. Why? The more make-up you wear, the hotter you’ll feel, and the more you risk unwanted mishaps. Hello, melting make-up! Tahoe’s a  natural place, to boot; keep your face looking natural, too.

 

4. OPT FOR WEDGES OR SANDALS

 

Stilletos may seem more elegant, but today’s wedges are equally as stylish, and, as aforementioned, we’re all about practicality. Wedges also work better on Tahoe’s natural terrain. Your Lake Tahoe wedding venue may not be rugged, per se, but chances are you’ll be navigating grass or bark chips.

 

5. GO MINI

 

Wedding dresses are traditionally long, but hey, it’s the 21st Century. Don’t get caught up in what’s traditional for the sake of staying comfortable. It’s your day–wear whatever will make you feel like the like happy, confident woman you are, and for many, that’s opting for a shorter wedding dress.

 

6. WHIP OUT YOUR SUNGLASSES

 

In the name of not spoiling your wedding day photos with a row of eye-squinting guests, encourage your party to rock sunglasses. Splash out on a pair that compliment your dress, or add that much more fun to the day by outfitting your bridesmaids with an array of vintage pairs.

 

7. PROVIDE FANS

 

For an added thoughtful gesture your guests will appreciate to the max, place a fan on each seat at the ceremony. As for brides, carry a purse-sized on in case of emergency.

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First off, high five to you for choosing to have a Lake Tahoe wedding; since all eyes will fixate on what’s interpreted from Native American Indian to mean “Lake of the Sky,” you can save money on decor. But why stop there? Hello, repurposing.

Repurposing furniture or decorations from your bridal shower can save you thousands, money you can put toward travel or a downpayment on a house. Yes, it’s nice to make your wedding day lavish—it’s a once in a lifetime occasion, after all—but you don’t need to end up in debt making the day memorable.

In the name of diminishing financial stress, we’ve come up with ways you can use what you’ve already got to decorate your Lake Tahoe wedding.

 

Re-use Bridal Shower Decorations

At your bridal shower, you’re likely to have all sorts of wedding-appropriate decor, like garlands featuring photographs of you and your soon-to-be-spouse, colorful paper lanterns, and string lights. Don’t use these as “one and done” items! Collect your bridal shower decorations and feature them at your Lake Tahoe wedding venue. It’s a “twofer.”

 

Turn Tea Tins into Vases

In the lead-up to your Lake Tahoe wedding, strongly encourage all your guests to drink tea when they visit. Why? You can turn the empty watertight and shatter-proof tea tins into charming vases for your wedding-day flowers. The old-fashioned prints and lettering are perfect for enhancing the whimsical ambiance, and gusts will love the unique touch. Should you find yourself short nearing the big day, eBay has a healthy selection of reasonably-priced ones you can have shipped to you or your florist.

 

Repurpose from Ceremony to Reception

Instead of buying double the flowers and double the vases and double, well, whatever other decorations you may want on your special Lake Tahoe wedding day, share the goods. With a little bit go planning, you can seamlessly move your decor from the ceremony to the reception, in turn saving yourself half the cost. Large arrangements at the altar can bring life to a buffet table, and bouquets placed on the ends of the aisles can be divvied up between cocktail tables.

 

Use Old Plates for DIY Food Stands

The win-win here is that mismatched vintage plates and vases have a certain charm that your guests will swoon over, and you’ll save money using what you have on hand. Kindly ask your friends and family to borrow a couple dishes. In the name of your happiness and gratitude, I’m sure they’ll offer up a dish or several.

 

Turn Vintage Drawers into Trays

Move your clothes aside—it’s time to let your vintage drawers shine at your Tahoe wedding. Vintage drawers make excellent food trays, not only for their novel looks, but for their ability to safely hold a lot of nibbles, especially ones of the dessert family.

 

Recycle Wine Corks into Place Card Holders

Regarding repurposing, this is the real winner. For the months leading up to your wedding, you’ll now be able to fully justify consuming bottle upon bottle of wine; with all the corks you collect, you can fully outfit your Lake Tahoe wedding reception with place cards. Genius, we know.

 

Turn Unused Maps into Garlands

Thanks to modern technology, our once much-used maps are collecting dust. Don’t let them linger any longer! Turn those colorful beauties into garlands. Not only with they attract intrigue, they’ll brighten up your venue and save what could equate to hundreds of dollars.

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Picture yourself on your wedding day, standing on the shore of Lake Tahoe. Your family is glowing, your friends are giggling. You and your new husband (husband!) are reflecting on what just happened (you got married!). You’re holding hands.

Now picture the other hand. It’s empty. Now feel the warm sun beating down on you. It’s hot. Picture yourself holding a nice cold, ice cold beverage, and picture that beverage containing fresh mint and lime. Now picture another containing rosé and berries, and another with grilled peaches, lemon juice and bourbon. Picture yourself cooling down, relishing this day of glory.

Summertime in Lake Tahoe is blissful, but it can be HOT. To help keep you and your guests cool on your wedding day, we’ve gathered our 7 favorite summery cocktails. These drinks will without a doubt make your Lake Tahoe wedding that much more successful; they’re unique, delicious and refreshing.

 

PIMM’S CUP

 


Perhaps I’m biased being of English heritage, but the classic English summertime drink, Pimm’s, is perhaps the best beverage for a hot day. Garnished with cucumbers, mint, apples, oranges and strawberries, the lemony Pimm’s-and-ginger-ale concoction is a classic that never disappoints.

 

ROSE LEMON SPRITZER

 


Rest assured, the rosewater in Rose Lemon Spritzers is not overpowering; it simply lends the cocktail a light, refreshing, and mildly floral touch. The crisp, cool bubbles will have you cooling down and dancing the night away in no time.

 

BERRY BASIL BOURBON COCKTAIL

 


Bourbon’s a great drink to have at your Lake Tahoe wedding because a lot of people enjoy it, but sometimes it needs a little sweetening up. For this reason, we enjoy this refreshing blackberry version. The added basil gives it an extra rejuvenating kick.

 

ROSEMARY-INFUSED HONEY SIDECAR

 


For a fun twist on a classic, opt for sidecars made with honey and rosemary. The rosemary adds an earthy, rugged twist, and it also helps to balance out the sweetness of the honey.

 

PINEAPPLE TEQUILA COOLER

 


While nothing says “not-Tahoe” more than pineapple (Tahoe does have pine trees, but unfortunately those don’t breed pineapples…), nothing says “refreshing” more than pineapple either. Plus, the yellow color is just too pretty to not serve. This recipe calls for a little kick with the addition of jalapeño. Spice that wedding up!

 

PROSECCO, ELDERFLOWER AND MINT COCKTAIL (“THE HUGO”)

 


Elderflower adds subtle sweetness to this prosecco-based cocktail. We love the simplicity, too, in both looks and taste.

 

RASPBERRY LIMONCELLO PROSECCO

 


First, beware! This is a cocktail you and your entire wedding party could sip on all day. The frozen raspberries keep the cocktail cool, and they look elegant to boot. What’s not to love about mint, raspberries and bubbles on a warm summer’s day in Lake Tahoe?

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Wedding Cakes That Scream Lake Tahoe

From watching two people seal the deal to seeing all the beautiful outfits, weddings are a blast. But a large part of the blast comes down to the delicious nibbles, and, in particular, the cake.

But I’m sure I’m not the only one who’s been to a wedding where the cake’s icing is hard-as-nails, and the sponge tastes, well, stale. Wedding cakes have become a bit of an obsession of mine since the first I ever tasted, and I’ve tracked down my favorite Lake Tahoe-esque ones that I think will make your day that much more memorable.

Whether you’re going for a flower, mountain or water-theme, here are some wedding cakes to inspire you in your exciting planning! These cakes scream Tahoe, in a nice way, not a screamy way. Here’s to making your cake match your Lake Tahoe wedding venue.

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Add to your visual wonderland of a Lake Tahoe wedding with mountain-esque decorations. From whimsical paper cranes to canoes filled with beautifully-presented appetizers, we’ve rounded up a few of our favorite Tahoe wedding decor ideas.

Surrounded by towering pine trees and crisp water, you’ll feel inspired to incorporate Lake Tahoe’s splendor in your wedding decorations. Plus, since you and your partner’s love feels so natural, why not make everything else feel natural, too?

These decorations will be sure to start a symphony of oohs and aahs. They’re simple, elegant, and, more importantly, woodsy.

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Save the roses for Valentine’s Day; your unique Tahoe wedding needs something a little more special, something with a little more “wow.” Plus, you’re a modern bride, so why not opt for unconventional flowers? Out with the old, in with the new. Your wedding day is representative of a new life, and your bouquet is a great way to reflect adventure and newness.

Yes, orchids are lovely, but we’ve found the real crowd-pleasers. Your guests will ooh and ahh over bouquets made of succulents (bonus: they’ll last a long time post-wedding), pine cones (you are having a Tahoe wedding, after all), vegetables, herbs and more. There’s no right way to make a bequest, but there is a wrong way: by going run-of-the-mill.

Make this day yours—pick the bouquet that really speaks to you.

Chelsea Nicole Photography

Succulent bouquet. Chelsea Nicole Photography

Rosemary accents. Paula O’Hara Photography

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One easy way to put some personality into your wedding is to swap out the traditional “Canon” by Pachelbel for something that speaks to you and your soon-to-be-husband. This could be the song that was playing when you first met, or something with inspiring, partnership-related lyrics. The song could fit the overall tone of your Tahoe wedding, or be totally out-of-the-blue. Walking down the aisle is your special moment, so don’t hold back. It’s your time to shine, your time to walk toward the love of your life accompanied by a meaningful tune.

Questions to ask when picking your processional song are:

1. Do you want lyrics?

2. Do you want something guests aren’t expecting?

3. Do you want something romantic?

4. Do you want something slow?

Here are 14 nontraditional processional songs that’ll make the entire ceremony’s hearts melt, and since I’m on a popcorn kick, I’m going to say like butter over freshly-popped popcorn. But this is just the start–just something to get your creative juices flowing. I recently went to a wedding where the bride walked down the aisle to an instrumental version of “Moon River,” and it was tear-inducing. Elegant doesn’t do the song justice.

“Heartbeats” by Jose Gonzalez

“Everyday” by Buddy Holly

“Boom Clap” by Lennon & Maisy

“Can’t Help Falling In love” by Ingrid Michaelson

“Is This Love” by Bob Marley

“Moon River” by Andy Williams

“Come Away With Me” by Norah Jones

“Lucky” by Jason Mraz, featuring Colbie Caillet

“Hallelujah” by Jeff Buckley

“Skinny Love” by Bon Iver

“Wonderwall” by Ryan Adams

“She” by Elvis Costello

“I Won’t Give Up” Jason Mraz

“Awake My Soul” by Mumford and Sons

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There are a few things Tahoe weddings are not. To name just three: complicated, stressful, and unsightly. For this reason, we’ve come up with some wedding reception meal ideas that are simple, stress-free, and aesthetically pleasing. To boot, they’ll help you come in under budget.

I recently went to a wedding where Paella was served, and here’s why it was a hit:

1. No individual menu cards: the chef stood in front of the reception and explained the meat and veggie options. This not only created a more intimate feel, but saved money on printing. You can also rest well knowing you saved a tree or two.

2. Efficiency: There was no waiting for multiple courses, which carved out more time for dancing and mingling.

3. No servers: Again, a money-saving strategy! Guests serve themselves from the pans, making the experience interactive. Bonus: you can control your portion.

4. All the colors!

5. It’s not something the average person eats frequently, making the dinner portion of the wedding that much more exciting.

6. Since you only need one meat and non-meat option, it’s easy to plan.

7. You spend just a fraction of your wedding-planning time testing food.

8. It’s filling, but won’t weigh you down, and it’s appropriate for all ages.

Paella aside, here are some stress-free meals for your stress-free Tahoe wedding:

Mashed Potato Bar (a.k.a. “mashtinis”): all you need is a few giant bowls of mashed goodness, and the rest is history, I mean toppings.

Chicken & Waffles: to bring out the inner kid. This is one surefire crowd-pleaser.

Taco Bar: Taco ’bout a way to celebrate?! Could be a little messier, but always a hit. Ingredients aren’t expensive, guests can customize, and you can eat as few or as many as you’d like.

Mac ’n Cheese Bar: By dinner time, you’re all in your dresses, so there’s no need to hold back. Plus, since Lake Tahoe offers many chances to burn energy outdoors, you have every right to load up on carbs; you’ll just be prepping for post-wedding festivities!

Breakfast for Dinner: Anything tastes better in nature, but when you’re at a Tahoe wedding, nothing’s like huevos rancheros or eggs benedict in the evening.

Pizza: Why? Because fun food makes a fun party!

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