Destination Wedding Planning


Plan an Intimate Wedding in California

An intimate wedding is small, beautiful, and authentic.  Rather than 100+ people that you won’t get around to talking to on your wedding day, having 20 or fewer people (or a micro wedding of 15 or fewer!) to witness your ceremony and join you for a shorter celebration can be more fun, more authentic, more sustainable and green, less stress, less waste, and definitely less money than a full-blown $28,000 wedding.  Don’t like dancing? Don’t like the idea of walking the aisle with all eyes on you? Think full weddings are unsustainable?  Crave adventure? Want things taken care of for you? Want concierge recommendations on things to do, places to see, food to eat?

A Special Day Designs offers intimate wedding planning on several levels:  An All-Inclusive Destination Wedding; Elopement Style; Outdoor Adventure; City Beat; and Wedding Concierge.

Just need an officiant for a simple No Fuss Elopement, or your Small & Intimate Wedding Ceremony + Flowers, of 25 or fewer guests at your venue, with no other planning by us?  Please see our officiant page for more information. We’ll just come in, perform a sweet little ceremony, and leave you to celebrate!

Why Northern California is a great place to get married!

Located in the Sierra Nevada foothills, gateway to historic gold country towns and sites, our local area is home to the “other wine country” in California with breath taking vistas and award-winning wines (and beer breweries, too!). We have historic downtown shopping, whitewater rafting, picturesque lakes, apple farms (with craft fairs on the weekends in September-October), farm trails, u pick pumpkins, and unparalleled hiking, fishing, kayaking and sightseeing.

We are nearby to Lake Tahoe, the gem of the Sierras, with its pristine lake of clear water and blue colors.  Activities and scenic vistas abound in all seasons.

Sacramento is the state capitol of California, with many historic sights, boating, rivers and kayaking and tubing (ALWAYS wear a personal flotation device, peeps!). It’s a haven for foodies, for nightclubbing, and has a prosperous arts area (midtown) and an LGBTQ friendly area as well.

We are LGBTQ friendly!

Destination Wedding Design + Consultation

Planning a wedding from a distance, even an intimate wedding of 25 or fewer guests, or a small wedding of 50 or fewer guests, can be difficult and overwhelming.  You need a local person familiar with wedding planning and the local venues, services, and terrain to help you.

This is a custom package, so what it includes is up to you.  You will  share your vision with us as to what kind of a location you are looking for, what kind of food you would like, style or theme, how many guests you will likely have, what your budget is, and what concierge services you would like – ideas for activities and opportunities, lodging, places to eat, etc.  Use this service for help with planning proposals and engagement parties, bachelor or bachelorette parties, pre-wedding trips, and the wedding itself.  We will provide you with good advice and contact information and descriptions of services that fit your needs. Please contact us for a checklist for a no-obligation, no pressure quote. The cost for this service is $125 per hour.

 Adventure Wedding!

Craving the outdoors for a casual, fun wedding?  We can do that!  From whitewater rafting to hiking the Pacific Crest Trail to a wedding on the river and kayak lessons to winter snowmobiling, we can customize your wedding weekend to include some adventure in the Sierra foothills and summit. Just the two of you, or you + guests. Please contact us for a checklist for a no-obligation, no pressure quote.

 City Beat

Whether the small historic Gold Rush cities of Placerville, Folsom, Auburn, or Jackson, or midtown or downtown Sacramento (with the famous golden Tower Bridge or State Capitol as a backdrop, maybe?), we can help you find a cool urban vibe, but still nearby to a lot of recreation and great activities. Please contact us for a checklist for a no-obligation, no pressure quote.

 Wedding Concierge

The essence of the concierge is to provide service.  A wedding concierge is available to couples and their guests prior to the wedding via email and telephone, and on-site at the rehearsal and/or wedding. The concierge is a local insider and is knowledgeable about the area’s historical and cultural sites, and can recommend wedding vendors, and activities and tours. Please contact us and we’ll be happy to provide you with a no-obligation, no-pressure price list. You will be surprised at the affordability of our services. It is our goal to always provide you with a pleasant experience, and we are low-key and use no aggressive sales tactics.

Modern Elopement – All Inclusive

Modern elopements  can include just the wedding couple, or up to 6 guests, all done in an hour or so.  These weddings include:

  • Consultation via email;
  • A sweet secular (non-religious) ceremony  by a legal officiant (you’ll let us know if you want to write your own vows or have us help);
  • Cake and/or cupcakes for you and your guests;
  • Beverages  for you and your guests;
  • Flowers for the wedding couple;
  • Indoor or outdoor location;
  • A photographer for an hour and final images on disc;
  • A witness if needed;
  • Concierge service for a restaurant reservation;
  • Concierge service for activity suggestions;
  • Concierge service for accommodation suggestions;
  • A swag bag;
  • Signing of and returning the marriage license.

Locations could include our charming historic towns, a local winery or brewery, a historic B&B, an apple farm or a Christmas tree farm, a lake or river or wooded area, a park, or the river city of Sacramento, for example. Please contact us for a checklist for a no-obligation, no pressure quote.

Pop-Up Wedding

These are such fun!  Have you heard of them?  Four or five weddings, scheduled in one pre-planned day at a fun public location. We find the best spots in the city or in the wilds, officiate a sweet little ceremony for you, and have a photographer to take photos of the ceremony and then fun photos afterwards.  Just one hour total!  This can include just the wedding couple, or up to 8 guests.  We’ll provide you a swag bag of ethical and locally-sourced treats. Then you’re free to go off and have an adventure and celebrate your own way! Coming soon!