Haley + Brian's Central Oregon

Forest Elopement

September 2022

When people imagine elopements–especially outdoor-focused or adventure weddings–their minds often drift immediately to a rustic and rugged affair.

They see boots in the mud and backpacks strapped tight or wild views pieced together through epic exploration. And sometimes, they picture these elopements as more stripped-down experiences–lovely but often lacking the small details that make a wedding special.

But what if I told you that the day you get married–whether it’s an elopement with just you and your partner or a small, intentional wedding with your closest people by your side–can include every tiny, unique touch you ever dreamed of?

What if I told you that vendors–creators who are masters at their craft, masters at making you exhale a sigh of total awe at what they’ve made for you–have a real place in every kind of wedding, not just the traditional ones?

Getting married is about letting the magic of your day take over–it’s about feeling every moment, breathing in the bliss of it all. It’s about feeling small and like you could do anything all at the same time.

It’s being overwhelmed and undone in the best and most beautiful ways possible because you and the love of your life are there, finally doing the thing you dreamed of doing.

That means doing things your way, choosing to prioritize what’s important to you, and creating a wedding day that’s not perfect, but rather, something so much better than that–something that’s entirely and truly you.

Forests, Waterfalls, & Creative Touches:

When Haley and Brian eloped in Central Oregon alongside waterfalls, rushing creeks, and a forest that felt like it was drawn from a fairytale.

But they never sacrificed the details.

They did something that I believe fully transforms an elopement or small wedding in the best way possible–they hired talented creatives who mapped out a day that aligned with and blended their ideal scenery and dream experience.

H & B were already picturing tumbling falls and lush forests so green they’d echo the Irish jello shots they drank on the night they first struck up the courage to get together.

But they wanted more than just stunning scenery. There were so many other important, personal things they wanted to infuse into their day.

Their love of food, their desire to enjoy the details, and small touches that meant the world to them–they didn’t want to sacrifice any of these things just because they were choosing a less-than-traditional venue.

Structuring elopement timelines is my expertise. Normally, that’s how I like to share a couple’s elopement story with others so they can see how the entire day unfolded.

But with the way that H & B so seamlessly included their creative vendors into their wedding, it makes so much more sense to share their day through the lens of who they chose to map it out so smoothly.

When Haley and Brian woke up, Dropping Beets (an amazing caterer from my town, Bend) created a delicious breakfast spread. Egg hash, bacon, fruit, fresh pastries–you name it, it was on the table. Within moments of walking into their Airbnb, I was greeted with a crumbly croissant.

Over breakfast, Haley and Brian got ready for their day. Sheilynne from Pacific Brides joined them at their Airbnb, helping Haley get her hair just right, creating a makeup look that was true to what she wanted. She buttoned her dress, perfected the details, and made sure everything was the way Haley envisioned it. But her expertise didn’t stop there. Sheilynne tagged along the entire day, touching up her makeup, and fixing her hair–she even stitched up Haley’s dress when a strap broke while she was getting ready.

That meant throughout their whole experience–the first look, their hike to an iconic Oregon fall, their moments just soaking in the forest together–she was there, touching up little details, tucking a piece of hair into the right spot, and making sure every moment was reflective of the day that Haley and Brian wanted to have.

Their hike through Oregon magic, ferns, and old-growth forests, was short but beautiful. A vibrant bouquet peeked through Brian’s backpack the whole way down, a beautiful arrangement created by Woodland Floral

At the end of the trail, they were greeted with thundering falls spilling over the moss–their ideal place for their private vows and wedding ceremony.

Right before they said their vows, Sheilynne poked her head in for a moment–arranging her dress, dabbing on lip stain–so that Haley never had to divert a thought toward what she looked like.

She could focus everything on the next few moments, diving into the feeling and the wonder of it without letting a distracting thought–especially something as small as a ruffled gown–steal the magic from them. They could be fully present, fully in the moment, and fully overcome with the bliss of the day they dreamed about.

After sharing their tearful vows and soaking up every second of their private ceremony, they wandered slowly back through the forest to the red adventure van they rented for their honeymoon road trip. It was a quick drive to their next destination–a picturesque lake for lunch and time spent on the water together.

When they arrived, a picnic was waiting for them by the lake. Joe from Dropping Beets had delivered again. He’d driven all the way out to the lake to deliver a picnic spread that looked almost too gorgeous to eat. Charcuterie-style boards, fresh salad, homemade dips–a whole array of magical, tasty food was there, waiting for them when they pulled up.

Haley and Brian soaked it all in without a drop of stress or schedule to think about.

As the sun started to sink lower over the lake, H & B rowed back in slowly.

When they’d eventually return back to their Airbnb, there’d be a full feast prepared for them–a dinner created by Dropping Beets that had been crafted just for them while they spent the last few hours of their elopement day softly rowing through the rippling waters of a lake.

Blending Creative Vendor Support with an

Intentional Wedding Day

Haley & Brian wanted slow, they wanted intentional, and they wanted a day that was nothing but “them”–and those are all things that hiring talented creatives can help with.

I think one of the biggest misconceptions about hiring vendors on your elopement day is that it somehow changes the intention of what your day is about.

Vendors don’t mean extra fuss, too many details, or that you’re channeling a larger, traditional wedding. And hiring vendors doesn’t mean you’re prioritizing “stuff” over experiences.

Instead, hiring professionals who are with you and committed to prioritizing your vision eliminates the stress and simplifies everything for you.

Here’s what I mean.

Every vendor that H & B included in their day made sure everything ran smoothly–and because of that, the weight of making their day unfold in ways they dreamed of was easier than ever imagined.

I think that’s a key difference between some couples who choose to do everything themselves versus those who put their trust in professionals who are experts at their craft.

Haley and Brian wanted amazing food, but they didn’t want to deal with the hassle of flying out or purchasing everything they’d need once they were in Oregon or cooking on their elopement day. They wanted to look and feel their absolute best, but they didn’t want to be concerned about their appearances all day long–they just wanted to feel the moments. They wanted a particular look for details that brought them absolute joy, but they didn’t want to stress about putting it all together.

So they hired a private chef for the whole day. They asked an incredible makeup artist to tag along to keep things put together. They invested in the expertise of a talented florist to give them the beauty and the surety of stunning flowers.

And the best part of it all was that it was so incredibly simple.

The weight and the work of creating a beautiful day were entirely off their shoulders. All they had to do was experience it fully and presently. That’s the magic of working with creatives.

Joe of Dropping Beets, presenting a picnic lunch to Haley + Brian on location.

Sheilynne of Pacific Brides, touching up Haley's makeup on location.

Sheilynne, of Pacific Brides, lending a helping hand as Haley steps off the row boat.

Creating Your Elopement Vision

+ Capturing Every Moment

Haley and Brian trusted me when I told them that leaning on vendors could help them create a wedding day that was seamless and blissful in the best ways. That’s something I want every couple out there to understand, too. No matter how you’re choosing to get married, placing your trust in the right creatives and allowing them to craft the vision you have for your day can truly create the experience of a lifetime.

As an elopement photographer, helping you plan a day like this and connecting you with talented vendors is what brings me the greatest fulfillment. But it goes above and beyond planning it, structuring timelines, and scouting locations–it’s about capturing your wedding day in its authenticity, whatever it looks like, exactly how you want it to feel.

Let’s create the day together.

- Tori

Florals: Tracy of Woodland Floral

Hair + Makeup: Sheilynne of Pacific Brides

Catering: Joe of Dropping Beets
Bride's Dress: Jenny Yoo from J. Major's Bridal

Vendors who made this day possible:

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Full-Day Olympic National Park Elopement


love is love:


I do not discriminate by gender, religion, race, background, sexual orientation, Age, nationality, or "style."
I welcome + celebrate love in all its forms.








wedding + elopement photographer

come to bliss

Tori Mercedes Ware



Based in Bend, Oregon

Available worldwide

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