Fashion / Weddings

Young Texas Store Couple Gets Married in a Top Secret Desert Wedding: Ceremony Site Kept Hidden Until Last Minute

photography Mary Costa

Round Top’s favorite young retail couple — Townsend Provisions proprietors Ryann Ford + Nick Mosley — walked down the aisle in the high-desert country outside Joshua Tree, California. As told by the bride to Catherine D. Anspon.

The Romance

We met on a blind date back in 2013. Mutual friends of ours, Grace Hall and Chris McCray (who actually ended up doing the interior design of Townsend Provisions), set us up. Our first date was at The Goodnight in Austin.

We had dinner, played Ping-Pong, and bowled — and, shockingly, hit it off. We dated for about a year and a half before deciding to open Townsend Provisions together in 2015 [in Round Top].

Popping the Question

May 10, 2016: Nick planned a trip to New Orleans, which is one of my favorite cities. We stayed at The Ace Hotel, which is a super-cool place. He popped the question on the way to dinner at Coquette. He also planned it to be the same day that my book [The Last Stop] came out, so it was a special day all around.

Side note: coincidentally, Coquette came to Round Top this past antique show for Rancho Pillow’s Feast in the Field dinner. We got to meet the chefs, and it was crazy to re-experience the amazing food, this time in Round Top instead of New Orleans.

The Vows

May 5, 2017 — Cinco de Mayo: We said our vows at the home we rented in Pioneertown, California, very near Joshua Tree. The house is located in the hills above Pioneertown — an incredible modern glass house that was very remote and completely off the grid. All of my best girlfriends and their husbands stayed in this house, and we used it to take some of our photos.

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  • Bering's Gift's Rodeo 2024

The roads to get there are all dirt and deep sand, so we had to shuttle our guests up to the house so they wouldn’t get stuck.

The Reception

We did a small cocktail reception at the house following the ceremony, then had the reception dinner at Pappy & Harriet’s in Pioneertown.

The Night Before

We had a really fun rehearsal dinner at the Joshua Tree Saloon, right up the road.

On the Rings

We found my engagement ring during a past Round Top Antique Show at Southern Classic Jewelry at The Compound in Round Top. We searched everywhere for the perfect vintage engagement ring and weren’t having any luck. I remembered Southern Classic Jewelry would be at The Compound during the show, so we went to see what they had on opening day.

None of the rings really spoke to me, but a specific diamond in one of the rings stood out. I loved the stone but didn’t care for the setting it was in. The stone is a round, cognac-colored diamond from the early 1900s. I love that it’s antique and that we found it in Round Top. I wanted a simple solitaire in rose gold, but really loved the look of vintage rose gold.

SCJ was amazing — they designed a new setting in vintage rose gold, and it turned out beyond beautiful. For Nick’s ring, we knew our good friends Russell and Barbara from Lark in Round Top would be able to design the perfect gold band. Russell melted down an old ring from Nick’s grandfather and carved a Saguaro cactus in it — a small nod to our love of the desert and many adventures together.

The diminutive church in Pioneertown’s Stargazing Desert Retreat near Joshua Tree, the mythic California town whose environs served as the destination for this Wild West-inspired wedding.

On Joshua Tree

We were looking for a destination in the desert that had enough amenities to make it a fun vacation for us and our guests. We loved that the Joshua Tree area had so many unique lodging options, fun restaurants, and the beautiful national park. I grew up about an hour from there, so it was fun to be back in my old stomping grounds.

The location was great because guests could day-trip to Palm Springs, hike in Joshua Tree National Park, or hang around the pool at their Airbnbs. The guests all loved the destination.

The Bride Wore

Stone Cold Fox gown, from Free People. Sandals by Gianni Bini. Earrings by Elizabeth Cole — I am obsessed with her jewelry. Her earrings stole the show, for sure.

The Groom Wore

Nick’s suit was from Bonobos, dress shirt from Stag, and vintage Lucchese cowboy boots from Townsend Provisions. The Hill-Side tie from Stag was anchored by an armadillo tie clip — one of my first gifts to Nick when we started dating. I found it at a great shop in Oklahoma City, Shop Good.

Wedding Decor

We sourced almost all of the decor from Townsend: antique French bread boards for the charcuterie and cheese, vintage 1920s Saltillo serapes, vintage brass cacti and the vintage motorcycle trophy that we ended up using as a cake topper.

Catered by

My mom, Sharon Ford! She used to be a chef. She and my cousin Mehgan Janecek spent hours before the ceremony building the beautiful spread. For the small cocktail hour following the ceremony, my mom planned charcuterie, cheese, veggies, dips and cactus cookies. Drinks were beer and wine.

Cake Date

Funfetti drip cake by Roman Blas of Over the Rainbow Desserts, Palm Springs. Vintage motorcycle topper from Townsend Provisions.

Walked Down the Aisle

My Dad, Don Ford, gave me away. We walked down the aisle to “You Are My Sunshine” by Morgane Stapleton with Chris Stapleton. One of Nick’s best friends, Brian Morgan, was the minister.

Wedding Party

Only our closest friends and family. About 40 guests. Our dogs, Mr. Big and Hank, were there but did not take part in the actual ceremony. But we couldn’t resist taking pics with them afterwards. They are our family, for sure!


I designed my bouquet: hot-pink peonies, protea (pincushion and king), thistles, carnations, eucalyptus, and my favorite part — cactus! I attached floral wire to the bottom of the pads of the cacti to include in my bouquet and Nick’s boutonniere.

Unforgettable Moment

The ceremony. To look up and be standing in one of our favorite places in the world surrounded by all of our favorite people, holding hands with each other, was amazing.

Wedding Misadventures

Attempting to do everything ourselves without a planner isn’t the best idea. The area is so remote there is zero cell service. That made it tough — everyone was always looking for everyone! Also, as I mentioned, the roads pretty much required a four-by-four. The van carrying half of the guests almost got stuck.

Top-Secret Ceremony Site

We didn’t tell the guests where the ceremony would be, only to meet at a specific location at a specific time and that we would shuttle them to the location. The shuttle drove the guests across a rough five miles on desert back roads, finally arriving at the beautiful glass house overlooking the valley.

Everyone was blown away. We were so blessed to find such incredible locations for all of the festivities.

Happily Ever After

We road-tripped on the way there and back, searching for great vintage boots and other treasures. We did a mini-honeymoon through Death Valley and the Grand Canyon on the way home.

Curated Collection