A Mock Elopement Turned REAL Proposal!

We set up a styled shoot to diversify our portfolio, and one of the ‘brides’ got the best surprise of her life…

By Vanessa and Chad, ‘The Outlovers’, your adventure wedding experts.

11 Dec 2023

We have taken big steps this year to diversify our portfolio and to really make sure that EVERYONE feels seen, welcome and joyfully represented in our work. ALL LOVE is celebrated here, and we want that to be blindingly obvious. No couple planning their wedding day should ever have to question whether a certain vendor will work with them or not. That sh*t breaks our hearts (and makes us really frickin’ angry, too!).

So, this summer we set up a ‘styled shoot’ with the lovely Kelci and Katherine! A styled shoot for those not in the know is where we use a real couple but set up a mock elopement, to take the photos we need to fill the gaps in our portfolio. It’s a bit of a catch 22: no couple is going to work with us if they don’t see couples like themselves on our website, but if they don’t work with us how can we then show couples like them moving forwards?! Styled shoots are the answer to that conundrum.

We teamed up with some fabulous local vendors for this shoot: Sweet Kiwi Bakery created us a custom cookies and a decadent cake (that survived some bumpy-a** roads to the top of a mountain pass!), Taste of Palisade put together a delicious picnic, and Alpenglow Growers crafted stunning florals. Also, big shout out to Azazie where we ordered a custom sized dress for Kelci that fit like a glove, and to The Suit Shop for Katherine’s super-sharp dark green suit.

We had SO. MUCH. FUN with Kelci and Katherine: we off-roaded to the top of a mountain in time for sunrise first look, we set up a fancy picnic, we held a ceremony (that induced real tears!), we tucked into pizza sitting around the fire and we all camped out together… Exactly the kind of stuff our couples would normally do!

But, wait! It gets better.

This mock elopement actually turned into a REAL PROPOSAL!!!

Katherine had sneakily been working with us behind the scenes to make this happen and it all turned out perfectly. Kelci had NO idea, despite priding herself on being able to detect a surprise a mile off! These two are such gems of humans and so deeply in love. It was so moving to see them decide on forever together. 

And, guess what? We’re shooting their ACTUAL ELOPEMENT next year!!!!! Kecli and Katherine have become our good friends through all of this and our hearts burst when they asked us.

Now to start plotting up something even more epic than this mock elopement…..

We would love to create an epic elopement experience for you! We provide planning assistance, photography and officiation for adventure-seeking couples across the US and worldwide. Get in touch to start brainstorming with us!

Chad & Vanessa, ‘The Outlovers’

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