Vintage Western Elopement in the Wallowas

Vintage Western Elopement in the Wallowas

This was the day of Claire + Jordan’s dreams—and I hope it shows you that you can plan the day of your own dreams, too, no matter what that looks like. Pure magic, every minute of it. There’s just something about capturing a couple when they are so in their element; feeling so free to be themselves, trusting their photographer to capture their true emotions, and it just being an overall collaborative experience. Claire + Jordan started by getting ready together, and ended the night with snuggles at the local dive bar. I hope you feel so inspired looking through this western vintage elopement in the Wallowas, a.k.a. one of my favorite areas of Oregon! Cheers to more days like this!

Claire + Jordan’s Western Vintage Elopement in the Wallowas

The ultimate Hallmark-inspired elopement day

When I tell you that you can design your elopement day to feel like your own romantic comedy, I truly mean it—I swear this day with Claire and Jordan was the ultimate Hallmark day. We had all the cozy, nostalgic western vibes that these two love, and incorporated little parts of their unique love story into EVERY part of the day. We wanted to show you what it could be like to get ready with your partner, instead of separately; to make breakfast together, to run around a lake covered in fall foliage + fog together. To snuggle up in order to stay warm, to read your vows and unlock a true core memory for your elopement day, to take off at the end of the night to a local dive bar you love. 

Every element of this day was meant to inspire you, and show you how this day is completely possible for ANYONE to have! Your elopement day can be as unique as you want it to be, and as untraditional as you want it to be—and I hope that through every photo in this blog post, you can feel just how much love, joy, and peace Claire and Jordan were feeling throughout their day!

Getting ready + making pancakes at the Jennings Hotel

I looooved how this day started off at the Jennings Hotel, this adorable, old west-inspired  boutique hotel in Joseph, OR; it truly was the perfect place for Claire and Jordan to get ready, and to kick off their adventure with all the nostalgic, western vibes! But before these two even touched their wedding attire, they spent some sweet time in the communal kitchen of the hotel, sharing snuggles and kisses and ENDLESS laughs as they made breakfast together. Seriously, what better way to kick off your elopement than with a delicious stack of pancakes that you helped each other make (plus a hot cup of coffee in a cute mug, of course!)? 

This was honestly just the most amazing morning with Claire and Jordan; instead of being thrown into a rushed morning of getting ready, they got the chance to really slow down, be present, and feel allll the emotions together. Mornings are always one of my favorite parts of elopements because couples can just take their time enjoying each other and doing whatever makes them feel most grounded + in love, whether that looks like going on a sunrise hike in the mountains or cozying up in the kitchen like they would on a normal day at home!

It was hilarious watching these two get ready, because they did so in side-by-side bathrooms at the hotel—so I was literally photographing + watching them both from the outside as they put on their elopement attire, with just a thin wall between them. I was cracking up so much during this, asking C + J to close the toilet lids so they weren’t open for the photos! It was the cutest moment, in the cutest his + hers bathroom setup. 

A dreamy vow exchange at Wallowa Lake Lodge

Wallowa Lake is by far one of the most breathtaking spots to visit in the Wallowas, so of course that’s where we headed next for Claire and Jordan’s vow exchange! And y’all, let me tell you: the fall vibes at this lake were to DIE for. It was the most classic PNW day in the mountains, with a thick layer of fog all around us, dark gray skies, and beautiful yellow + orange fall foliage. The way these colors looked with the gloomy grays of the lake + the deep greens of the trees on the other side of the water was insane and so perfectly moody. And the orange leaves combined with Jordan’s brown corduroy jacket?! Ughhh y’all it was my boho PNW dream come true!

Once we’d taken a ton of photos of Claire + Jordan frolicking around the lake, we headed further inland to Wallowa Lake Lodge, to the beautiful styled table that was set up for these two. It was the most magical autumn color palette I’ve ever seen, featuring so many pale shades of pink, purple, and orange to complement the greenery of the forest around us. I’m convinced there’s no better way to celebrate your newlywed status than by enjoying a meal at a stunning tablescape with your favorite people.

Want to see more elopement inspiration at this gorgeous lake? Take a look at Lexi & Dan’s Wallowa Lake Elopement in Eastern Oregon!

Casual dive bar elopement portraits

Claire and Jordan weren’t the type of couple who wanted a grand, elegant reception with their guests—no, going to a laid-back dive bar was way more their vibe than sipping on glasses of expensive champagne. So we headed to a local bar for the rest of the evening, where Claire and Jordan could enjoy a locally made cider + cozy up by a fire after a snowy fall day in the mountains (and take sooo many photos with all the vintage western vibes we were going for)! I could not have dreamed up a better ending to this incredible day if I tried; it just felt so THEM. So authentic. So unique to who they are, how they love, and what brings them joy. I swear I have the best job in the world, and I hope that this day inspires you to plan your own unique elopement experience that you’ll never forget!

Wallowas elopement vendors

Huge shoutout to all the vendors who helped bring this amazing day together!

Planning + Design: Curated Mess Co |⁣

Florals: The Slow Cult | @theslowcult⁣

Stationary: Courting Calligraphy | @courtingcalligraphy⁣

Rentals: Great Jones NW | @greatjonesnw⁣

Veil: @_inseptember_⁣

Dress: @curateddressrentals⁣

Bolo tie: @forged_by_sidney⁣

Hats: @big_chief_vintage⁣

Couple: @claireaand @unclejordo⁣

Hotel: The Jennings Hotel | @thejenningshotel 

Lodge: Wallowa Lake Lodge | @wallowalakelodge 

Bar: @mcrowcompany 

Hey! I’m Dawn, an Eastern Oregon based elopement and micro wedding photographer. My favorite thing in the entire world is collaborating with amazing couples to create the elopement experience of their dreams, just like I did with Claire and Jordan; preserving the narrative of not only how your day looked, but the essence of how it felt. I’m so honored you’ve found your way here and if you feel like we may be a match for your grand adventure, reach out here, and let’s begin this journey together!

And y’all, I love the Wallowas SO much that I featured it in a recent guide that I published, with the Top 20+ Best Places to Elope in Oregon in 2024-2025. Head to that guide to learn more about why I love this part of Oregon so dang much for adventure elopements 🙂

And if you love that guide + are looking for more in-depth PNW elopement resources, check out a few of my recent favorites below:

8 Twilight-Inspired Elopement Locations in the PNW

Ultimate Crater Lake National Park Elopement Guide

25 Best Wildflower Elopement Locations in the PNW