A Sophisticated Garden Party Wedding in Napa

Emily Anderson and Jake Ryan first met in 2008 as freshmen at at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. They met at a party at Jake’s fraternity house, becoming fast friends. “It wasn’t until a group spring break trip to the Bahamas during our senior year that we actually started dating,” Emily adds “But we stuck with it after graduation, spending countless hours on Amtrak between D.C. and New York before I moved to D.C. in 2014.” Three years later, in June of 2017, Emily headed home to California to visit her parents during a work trip. “I’d invited Jake to join me, but he couldn’t get away,” she recalls. As she got ready to head to dinner with her grandmother, Emily got a phone call from Jake and walked outside to answer. “As we said hello, I heard his voice echo. When I looked around, he was standing in my backyard!” she says. “I ran across the lawn to hug him, and he got down on one knee.”

A few weeks after getting engaged, Emily and Jake were back in California for a friend’s wedding and decided to look at Meadowood Napa Valley in St. Helena. “I knew Jake would love the preppy feeling of the property. Plus, he’s allergic to horses so a barn venue was out of the question!” Emily says with a laugh. The couple made the most of the property, kicking off their wedding weekend with a croquet party on Friday, followed by their wedding on June 16, 2018. Their big day was all about casual elegance, as the bride, her mom, and Cole Drake Events collaborated on a fabulous garden party with great food, incredible wine, and a serious dance sesh. Keep scrolling for all the pretty photos by Olivia Rae James.