Weddings May 13, 2015

Three Ways to Wow

Tips and Tricks for Planning the Perfect Sun Valley Wedding


When two Sun Valley natives travel the United States exploring exotic wedding locations yet still return home for the most important day in their lives, it’s an indication of just how special Sun Valley is. Kate Dondero and Carter Minor—both born and raised in the Valley—married, fittingly, outside on a spectacular July day last summer with more than 200 friends and family there to share the day.

Years after having grown up together, Carter and Kate reconnected and instantly fell in love. Carter proposed with a breathtaking ring—a large canary diamond surrounded by exquisite white diamonds.

Locals through and through, Kate and Carter held a truly Idaho-themed celebration with birch logs holding Idaho-shaped seating cards, shot glasses showing off the map of Idaho with a destination star for Sun Valley, and, of course, red and white beer coozies. The couple’s two retrievers also participated in the day, providing their own dash of joy.

The bride wore a lovely mermaid train and fitted lace gown with rhinestone trim. Covered buttons and an X- back detail, illusion veil, and exquisite 3-carat diamond drop earrings—family heirlooms—brought gasps of wonder from the guests as she walked down the aisle. Their three-tiered, bright pink cake provided a fun and fresh treat at the reception.

After the festivities, the beautiful couple jetted off to honeymoon in California.

Kate Dondero and Carter Minor's Sun Valley, Idaho wedding. Photo by Hillary Maybery.

Katie Dondero and Carter Minor's Sun Valley, Idaho wedding. Photo by Hillary Maybery.

Kate Dondero and Carter Minor's Sun Valley, Idaho wedding. Photo by Hillary Maybery.




Danielle Krueger and Benjamin Rodgers Sun Valley, Idaho wedding. Photo by Two Bird Studio.

The Sun Valley destination wedding of Danielle Krueger and Benjamin Rodgers last July was an easy decision for the two who considered the area a “home away from home.”

Their theme was “mountain chic,” complemented by a palette Danielle chose to match the “natural beauty of the landscape.”  Pink, cream, blush, white roses, fluffy hydrangea, budding lilac, greenery and mercury glass blended beautifully into the late summer sun washing over the mid-Valley home they chose as their venue. With 200 guests looking on, Danielle and Benjamin exchanged vows under a grapevine arch adorned with the wedding flowers. Wedding photos shot in a lush meadow in late sunlight reflected the ethereal beauty of the day.

Danielle’s lacy, strapless gown with tulle mermaid skirt and illusion veil tucked into her blonde loose bun and her diamond drop earrings were elegant. Three tiny attendants—two little girls in ballerina skirts, flip-flops and blonde tendrils as well as their dapper escort, in suspenders—added a sweet touch to the day.

Danielle, who walked down the petal-strewn aisle to Van Morrison’s “Have I Told You Lately,” said the highlight of her day was the calm and love her father showed her before the start of the ceremony. Ben and Danielle partied with their guests at Whiskey Jacques’ after
the wedding, then slipped out for a Hawaiian honeymoon.

Danielle Krueger and Benjamin Rodgers Sun Valley, Idaho wedding. Photo by Two Bird Studio.





Amanda Nicoletti and Christian Meier's Sun Valley, Idaho wedding. Photo by Hillary Maybery.

The marriage of Amanda Nicoletti and Christian Meier was not only joyous, but perhaps a first for many of the guests. India in Idaho was the couple’s theme, and Amanda, who shares not only a USC background with her groom, Christian, but a love of the exotic, wanted a “party that was colorful, eclectic, unique but casual, too. We wanted people to celebrate in our favorite place in the whole world but also get our love of Asia.”

The wedding, held at Our Lady of the Snows Church, had Christian’s 10 groomsmen in classic attire and Amanda’s six bridesmaids in Bellini peach silk with loose wreaths of rose, stephanotis and greenery in their hair. Amanda wore a strapless gown with sweeping panels of embroidered lace and rose gold Manolo Blahnik heels.

The wedding reception, held in a private home, carried an Indian theme throughout the night with handblown water glasses and candle votives in electric colors, bamboo guest chairs, custom table runners soaked in the deep colors that define India, saturated turquoise jugs holding voluptuous deep pink peonies, massive jai mala garlands, fragrant flower leis that stretched across the swimming pool, and live sitar music.











This article appears in the Issue of Sun Valley Magazine.