Announcing their engagement just after the new year, actors Anna Camp and Skylar Astin had a lot of work to do to prepare for their September nuptials. They needed a skilled event designer and knew just who to call. Tessa Lyn Brand is an award-winning wedding planner who formerly worked as an assistant director on dozens of major feature films, including 2011’s The Help, where she met Anna Camp.
As with many affianced couples, the first task was picking the perfect venue to host their celebration. “They wanted me to find them an outdoor venue with a killer view where their guests could enjoy an amazing sunset,” shares Tessa. Though Anna and Skylar were friends before building their relationship, it was love at first sight when they stepped onto a Santa Ynez winery. The sun soon began to set, and the vibrant colors in the sky became the palette for the wedding. “The venue is very pale in color, so they wanted to add tons of color in the décor for balance,” explains Tessa. Instead of using silver or gold as the metallic accent, rose gold was used to perfectly complement the sunset hues. “We tried to build colors we used as the night went on so guests felt like it was getting more colorful as the night progressed,” Tessa notes. Much like a sunset builds in intensity, more hues were added into the event décor. While the ceremony utilized peaches and pinks, the reception saw lavender, baby blue, and an increase of peach hues added into the floral arrangements.
Anna and Skylar wanted their chuppah to appear as if it grew from the ground, and the florist, Lotus and Lily, complied by creating a structure with four Manzanita trees and ferns at the base, with beautiful blossoms interwoven with the wild branches. Another aspect of the day that was important to the couple was the food. To honor Anna’s South Carolina roots, shrimp and grits were the first course for dinner. Kalua braised pork sliders alluding to the couple’s Hawaiian engagement were served as appetizers during the cocktail hour. It’s no surprise that such a fun-loving couple would want to keep the party going by treating guests to late-night snacks, but breakfast burritos and gourmet popcorn flavored with rosemary may have been more unexpected.
As a wedding coordinator, Tessa knows there’s not much more satisfying than seeing a design come together as planned. She fondly remembers taking part in the floral mockup, to see how the centerpieces paired with the rented tables. “We made a few changes that day, but when we were finished, the design was literally perfect,” Tessa muses. “[And] it was one of the most beautiful ceremonies I have ever seen.”
Photos by Katie Shuler Photography; Consulting by Tessa Lyn Events; Floral Design by Lotus & Lily Floral Design; Linens by La Tavola Fine Linen; Rentals by A Rental Connection; Stationery by Wedding Paper Divas