Romantic Neutral-Hued Wedding at a Paso Robles, California Vineyard

Leigh Armstrong and Alex Young

Photographed by: Elisabeth Millay Photography & Jerry Hayes PhotographyLocation: Paso Robles, California, United States

Leigh affectionately refers to Paderewski Vineyard at Epoch Estate Wines – a property once owned by a former Prime Minister of Poland and purchased by her parents in 2004 – as her and fiancé Alex Young’s “happy place,” and says she always knew it would be the perfect place to say “I do.” Guided by a vision of classic elegance with a rustic feel, she worked to highlight the rolling hills and verdant trees of the vineyard. “We wanted people to know they were attending a wedding, but have each particular element blend seamlessly into the landscape,” explains the bride. Leigh wasn’t fazed when sister Lindsey revealed that she, too, would be marrying at Paderewski. “I absolutely loved our wedding, so I wanted her to do it exactly the same so we could relive it again,” Leigh smiles, “but I wanted her to be able to put her own spin and feel on it.” 

Leigh and Alex centered the décor of their rehearsal dinner – held in a rustic barrel room – around vineyard motifs. The focal point of the space was a massive chandelier, which consisted of bunches of grapes and foliage as well as glass globes that each contained a tea light. In all, one thousand pounds of grapes were utilized in the stunning chandelier and table runners.  

Leigh’s 10 bridesmaids donned charcoal grey dresses and held nosegays of greenery, dahlias, and pale pink roses that matched the hue of the bride’s ensemble. The custom ball gown – which as Leigh’s wedding planner declares, defined the look of the entire event – featured two layers of tulle over a floral-patterned bodice and skirt. A wide ribbon belt completed the stunning bridal design.

Guests gathered at the edge of the sprawling vineyard, where an aisle lined with white flower petals and urns overflowing with additional vanilla blooms culminated in an arbor constructed of vines. A horse-drawn carriage transported Leigh and her father to the ceremony, where her handsome groom awaited. “Standing in our favorite place, in front of everyone we love, and promising to spend the rest of our lives together will go down as the best moment of our lives,” Leigh confirms. 

Round and rectangular tables were covered in slate grey linens and topped with short silver vases of hydrangeas and roses. A magnificent tablescape created especially for the newlyweds featured a lush “runner” of ivory hydrangeas; Leigh calls the design “quite possibly the most beautiful table I have ever seen in my life.” The pièce de résistance was the open-air canopy: grape vines that were intertwined with tiny twinkle lights and strung overhead. A band, DJ, and games such as horseshoes entertained guests past 2AM. 

A classic five-tiered cake boasted floral piping and three scrumptious flavors: white cake with buttercream icing, carrot cake, and chocolate cake with peanut butter icing and chocolate ganache.