A Girly Bridal Shower and Intimate Formal Wedding in New York

 Elegant, Glamorous, Modern, New York, Real Weddings, Romantic, Spring, Summer  Comments Off on A Girly Bridal Shower and Intimate Formal Wedding in New York
Jan 062014
 

When you've already chosen a rock star planner and photographer for your wedding, why not use their expertise to turn your bridal shower into an event to remember, too? That's just what Rachel, 33, did to celebrate both her shower on May 5, 2013, and her wedding, with a ceremony on June 10th and a reception on June 13th.

"Instead of one big wedding day, I wanted a bunch of small intimate events so we could really enjoy them and spend time with the people there," says Rachel. "Every time an event was over, it was almost time for the next one!" By having both the bridal shower and the ceremony at her mother's home in Brooklyn Heights, planner Laura Remmert was able to help Rachel create an intimate, family-focused series of celebrations that captured the importance of the event to the couple.

From the playful and girly bridal shower to the intimate ceremony in her mother's dining room, to an Art Deco-inspired reception at the Bleecker Street Arts Club three days later, Rachel and her now-husband Anthony, 37, celebrated their marriage in as many ways as they possibly could.

"The shower was very girly and whimsical," says planner Laura. She mixed rented mix-and-match floral china with Rachel's grandmother's crystal to put an antique spin on the décor, while gold chairs and black and white cushions added a whimsical touch. A date in May meant there was an abundance of fresh, seasonal flowers in vibrant pink. Says Rachel, "Having Laura help with the shower meant we didn't have to worry about rentals or design, and that my mother and sister could enjoy themselves during the party."

The lush centerpieces featured peonies, ranunculus, garden roses, and sweet peas. A combination of gold and silver bud vases carried on the celebration's eclectic feel.

For such a playful event, there was no better choice for food than caterer Peter Callahan. Whimsical hors d'oeuvres, like bite-sized fish tacos served with mini margaritas, kept all the ladies satisfied. Another one of his signature passed treats? Pastry rings topped with caviar and a dollop of cream.

Instead of a traditional guest book, Rachel's friends and family left her messages on a bottle of wine.

There's nothing more fun than s'mores, and they're even better when they come in a one-bite package!

For both her ceremony and her reception, Rachel chose sleek, modern gowns designed by Inbal Dror. "I wanted something unique and different, and Inbal was really able to do that," she says.

The couple, who met 15 years ago, were engaged for almost a year and a half before they began planning their wedding. Once they started, bringing in a planner meant they could pull it all together in 8 months.

Anthony wore a classic tuxedo from Tom Ford. His rose gold Patek watch belonged to Rachel's late father.

In honor of her father, who passed away seven years ago, Rachel had her elegant white and green bouquet wrapped in one of his ties.

Her strapless Inbal Dror gown featured va-va-voom sheer nude lace on the back of the corset.

The ceremony was supposed to take place outside, however the threat of rain caused them to move it indoors. The chuppah, draped in orchids, roses, and hydrangeas in shades of white, was erected in Rachel's mother's dining room, which ended up being the perfect location for the cozy ceremony.

Three days later, on June 13th, 2013, Rachel and Anthony gathered 65 of their friends at Bleecker Street Arts Club for the reception. Rachel donned another Inbal Dror design, this one featuring modern beading and an a-line skirt.

Layered gold, silver, and champagne were accented with fresh white and green flowers. Patterned linens put a glam spin on the tables, which were topped with white peonies and tall candlesticks.

For the wedding reception, Rachel and Anthony turned to Mario by Mary, serving their guests a menu curated by Mario Batali and created by Mary Giuliani. They shared some of their favorite—and indulgent—foods, from blinis and caviar (served with chilled vodka shots) to burrata, tortello puzzone, and strip loin.

When they weren't dining or dancing, guests entertained themselves with a photo booth full of playful props. For dessert, a white-on-white wedding cake was topped with the couple's monogram.

And the party didn't end there! As a nod to their Anguillan engagement, Anthony and Rachel invited friends and family to Cap Juluca resort to celebrate with them yet again.

"I know everyone says this, but don't forget to enjoy your wedding day," says Rachel. "Don't stress over every little thing—just be in the moment." Whether it's your bridal shower or your wedding day, having a great team in place will keep the stress to a minimum, and the joy at an all-time high.

Bridal Shower & Ceremony Venue: The Bride's Mother's Home || Reception Venue: Bleecker Street Arts Club || Bridal Shower & Wedding Planner: Laura Remmert Events || Bride's Wedding Dresses: Inbal Dror || Shoes: Prada, Jimmy Choo, Christian Louboutin || Jewelry: Family Heirlooms || Hair & Makeup: Jessie Riley || Groom's Tuxedo: Tom Ford || Wedding Bands: Michael Herman || Florist: Lewis Miller Design || Invitations & Paper Goods: Regas || Music: Venus Ensembles || Bridal Shower Catering: Peter Callahan || Wedding Catering: Ceremony – KG Fare, Reception – Mario by Mary || Cake: Ceremony – Lady M Confections, Reception – Cheryl Kleinman Cakes || Rentals: Party Rental Ltd. || Favors: Molly's Cupcakes || Photography: Roey Yohai Photography

—Jaimie Schoen

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Dec 312013
 
Modern Couple Blue Shoes Chicago Wedding

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

When they were freshmen at the University of Indiana, hanging around the dorm with some other students, Jon, now 31 and an IT consultant, told a joke about sausages in a frying pan. Most of his friends dismissed it immediately as another one of his silly wisecracks—to this day, no one can remember exactly how it went—but one person laughed. Jamie, a 31-year-old communications consultant, remembers finding her future husband instantly entertaining—and, luckily, she still does.

When planning their April 2013 nuptials, Jamie and Jon knew they wanted to honor both their shared love of their home city, Chicago, and their wacky sense of humor. They chose the Chicago History Museum for their modern, sophisticated reception because it perfectly represented their city life together: the couple said "I do" surrounded by artifacts and memorabilia from their hometown, and just steps away from the path where they coach a team of runners each weekend.

By adding personal touches like custom notes, a quirky, self-written ceremony, and a visit from their favorite hot-dog truck, Jamie and Jon crafted a party that went way beyond any affair we've ever seen and became a day so completely their own, they'll never forget a second.

Couple Chicago History Museum Wedding Engagement Ring on Modern Stripe Background

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

"Jon believes that the perfect proposal contains three elements," Jamie says. "It should be a complete surprise until the moment it happens, it should be at a location I can go to when I'm having a sad day, and it should include an experience I've never had before." Ever the consultant, he put together a spreadsheet weighing every possible proposal scenario. The winner? A jaw-dropping underwater "will you marry me?" in the whale tank at Shedd Aquarium (he signed them up for a whale-training session), complete with bubble-wrapped ring box. Yes, it really does get that romantic.

Black and White Wedding Portrait Chicago History Museum Wedding Portrait Chicago History Museum Monique Lhuillier Manolo Blahnik Blue Jeweled Pumps Wedding

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

Jamie wore a trumpet-style Monique Lhuillier gown with a Chantilly lace and French tulle overlay, three-quarter sleeves and a train. Paired with a cathedral-length veil embellished with Swarovski crystals, the gown was equal parts sophisticated and modern. Her blue Manolo Blahnik pumps coordinated with Jon's orange socks as a nod to their shared alma mater, the University of Illinois.

White Wedding Bouquet Tulips Roses Peonies Groom Boutonniere White Ranunculus

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

Jamie carried a pale bouquet of French tulips, white peonies and roses tied with an ivory silk ribbon. The groom wore a boutonniere of white ranunculus.

Bride Ceremony Chicago History Museum Monique Lhuillier Ceremony Program Custom Monogram Chicago History Museum Wedding Ceremony Chicago History Museum Topiary Modern Wedding Ceremony

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

In fitting with the French-garden feel of their wedding, Jamie and Jon lined the aisle with boxwood topiaries for their informal, self-written ceremony, which was officiated by a close friend. Jamie walked down the aisle to "Henry the Eighth" by Herman's Hermits, her late father's favorite song. The two vowed to "eat all the chocolate chip cookies you want to bake for me," and "always run at your pace."

Chicago History Museum French Tulips Chandelier Chicago History Museum Main Room Wedding Escort Cards Chicago History Museum Wedding

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

In the museum's quirky main room, surrounded by reminders of the industrial history of Chicago, Jamie and Jon created a modern organic paradise, lighting the room in soft green tones. As guests walked into the reception, they found their seat assignments under a giant arrangement of French tulips under a crystal chandelier—talk about a grand entrance!

Guestbook Tree Idea Jaime_Jon_16_guestbook2.jpg

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

"In lieu of a guest book we had a "Wishing Tree" where guests wrote their wishes, wisdom and wit for us and placed them on the tree. Our families read their wishes as part of the ceremony," Jamie says.

Green Centerpiece Chicago History Museum Wedding Long Table Grey Tablecloth Chicago History Museum Wedding Candle Centerpiece Chicago History Museum Wedding Jeweled Initials Bride Groom Chairs Topiary Centerpiece Wedding Reception

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

The couple swapped out round dinner tables for long ones and covered them with grey silk tablecloths, white linen napkins, white china, and green and black glassware. Boxwood-wrapped planters of white tulips, roses and ranunculus served as centerpieces, and freestanding topiaries around the room added to the mod-garden vibe.

Personalized Monogrammed Family Style Wedding Menu Square Tiered Wedding Cheesecake Dessert Lounge Wedding Chicago History Museum

Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio

Jon, the foodie half of the newlywed couple, took care of the menu. He included a note on each guest's custom-monogrammed card explaining his selections, and letting everyone know that he made a donation to the Kidney Cancer Association in their honor. The spread was way beyond your standard filet mignon and seasonal vegetables. Each dish was Italian-inspired, family style, and absolutely mouthwatering: think individual cheese plates for each guest, rust artisan pizzas, and baskets of warm garlic bread. "We loved to hear that guests felt pampered when they sat down to our tables," Jamie says.

The biggest surprise of the evening? Everyone got to munch on hot dogs straight from the Chubby Weiner truck, a Chicago institution, during the reception.

As for dessert, Jamie and Jon ordered their three-tier cheesecake from a local, family-run vendor to show support to their city. And that's not all: After getting down on the dance floor in flip-flops the couple provided, guests were treated to a sweet session in Jamie and Jon's dessert lounge, complete with Lucite chairs, embroidered pillows and tables with warm chocolate chip cookies, whipped chocolate souffle, and s'mores supplies.



Bride Groom Chicago History Museum Wedding


Photo: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studio


What everyone loved most about the wedding, Jamie says, is the wit they took care to weave throughout the fun-filled evening. Jon and Jamie's shared sense of humor was everywhere: in their vows, in little notes they left guests everywhere, in their whimsical song choices, and in their quirky, playful venue. They met because Jon made Jamie laugh, and—she says—years later, they're still laughing together.

Ceremony and Reception Venue: Chicago History Museum || Bride's Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier || Veil: Nancy Shefts || Shoes: Manolo Blahnik || Jewelry & Wedding Rings: Family heirlooms || Hair: Roger Gumm of Colette Salon and Spa || Makeup: Nicole Jacob || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Of their own choosing || Groom's Tuxedo: Nicholas Joseph || Florist: Beth Tarrant of Anna Held Floral Design Studio || Catering: Jewel Events Catering| |Invitations: Pioneer Announcements || Music: Amaryllis Strings, Michael Walters Orchestra || Cake: Swedish Bakery || Favors: Donations to The Kidney Cancer Association || Wedding Planner: Frank J. Andonoplas || Photography: Robin Sloan, River Bend Photo Studios

—Amanda First

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A Timeless Seaside Wedding in Southampton, New York

 Classic, New York, Preppy, Real Weddings, Romantic, Spring, Summer  Comments Off on A Timeless Seaside Wedding in Southampton, New York
Dec 262013
 

A trip to office hours may not sound like an important occasion, but for Christina, now 28, her decision to chat with a friend on her way was. As the two women talked, a handsome man named Rashid (a friend of Christina's friend) stopped to join them. "I tried to play it cool and not stare at him too much–he had the nicest smile," says Christina. After ten minutes, Rashid, now 29, got up to leave. "It was only supposed to be a five minute break!" he says. Christina felt awful for keeping him, but his response melted her heart–and ours. "He said 'It was worth it, I got to meet you!'" Christina gushes. A few days later, they met for dinner, and that's when it all began.

For Christina's 26th birthday, Rashid planned a trip for the two of them to New York City. He booked a room at her favorite hotel, Ink48, and, after they were settled in, asked Christina if she wanted to go up to the roof to take some pictures. The rooftop was deserted, leaving Rashid and Christina alone with the panoramic city views. It was at that moment that he got down on one knee and asked her to spend the rest of her life with him.

The classically romantic couple headed to the New York town of Southampton on May 18, 2013, for their vineyard ceremony, then moved to a restaurant in nearby Hampton Bays for their 100-person reception. The seaside ambiance inspired their loosely nautical and perfectly timeless celebration.

"We wanted our wedding to be elegant," says Christina. Their beautiful wedding bands–hers pavéed in diamonds, his in a brushed finish–are as classic as they come.

Though the color scheme was mostly white with touches of blue, Christina added a few colorful flowers to the mix as a nod to their May wedding date. Both her bouquet and Rashid's boutonniere were made of light purple roses.

Christina fell in love with the Ali gown by Augusta Jones because of the beautiful lace. "The high-neck style was classic but form-fitting," she says. Covered buttons ran up the back of the bodice.

"Rashid and I love wine, and were so happy to share Duckwalk vineyard with our guests," says Christina. The outdoor ceremony took place overlooking the rows of vines. Small nosegays of hydrangeas and roses decorated the aisle. Christina was escorted down the aisle to "What a Wonderful World."

During the ceremony, the couple planted seeds together, symbolizing their union and how they will grow together as one. As they made their way back up the aisle, guests tossed red rose petals in celebration.

Christina accessorized her gown with a simple pearl bracelet. Blue pearl earrings served as her "something blue." Rashid wore engraved cufflinks and collar stays that Christina bought him as a wedding present.

"Having our reception at a restaurant saved us a lot of time and money," says Christina. "All the tables and chairs were included!"

The tables were topped with light blue linens and decorated with low white and green centerpieces. A printed menu marked each place. "Food and drink were a priority for us. The restaurant is delicious, and gave us lots of options," says the bride.

Instead of a traditional wedding cake, the couple served their favorite flavors, like classic red velvet and salted caramel, from Georgetown Cupcake. The cupcakes were personalized with anchors and the couple's monogram.

Rashid and Christina honeymooned along the French and Italian Riviera. "The hardest adjustment was coming back to work after such a fantastic trip!" says Christina.

Her advice is to know what you're capable of, as well as what your family is willing to help with. "We didn't have a day of coordinator, which was fine for us as we had a lot of family members volunteer to help with whatever we needed day-of," Christina says. "But if event planning is not your favorite thing and you just want to be able to coast through your big day, it might be worth the extra money to get a day-of coordinator or a planner!"

Ceremony Venue: Duckwalk Vineyard || Reception Venue: Oakland's Restaurant || Bride's Wedding Dress: Augusta Jones || Shoes: Adrianna Papell || Jewelry & Wedding Rings: David S. Diamonds || Hair: Martha Ellen Van Gemert of Headchop || Makeup: Shannon Park || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Amsale || Groom's Tuxedo: Hugo Boss || Florist: Cathy of Roses & Rice || Invitations: Constance Sepulveda || Music: Art Strings Ensembles, DJ Will Buck || Cupcakes: Georgetown Cupcake || Favors: Tate's Bakeshop || Photography: Petruzzo Photography

—Jaimie Schoen

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A Vintage-Inspired DIY Wedding at Cornerstone Sonoma in California

 California, Elegant, Glamorous, Real Weddings, Romantic, Spring, Vintage  Comments Off on A Vintage-Inspired DIY Wedding at Cornerstone Sonoma in California
Dec 052013
 

Julia and Hieu were the exact opposite of what you'd expect a couple planning their wedding to be like, and it all started with the proposal. "It was very casual, just like us," says Julia. "Hieu was telling me about a dream he had in which he proposed, and the question just came out naturally." A week later, they planned a more traditional proposal for their parents, where their two families gathered together for blessings and the formal engagement.

Their wedding planning was equally casual. The couple was engaged for almost 18 months, but didn't start planning their September 4, 2012, wedding until 9 months before. "Our coordinators said we were the most relaxed, go-with-the-flow couple they'd ever worked with!" says the bride. They chose a venue with sprawling grounds–and lots of local art–where they could host their ceremony, cocktail hour, and reception in different areas. Their vintage, rustic wedding was full of DIY projects that helped keep them on-budget, bringing together their family and friends to help turn their wedding dream into a reality.

Wedding bands and engagement ring at a California wedding.

Lace-inspired nude and cream Tadashi Shoji wedding gown.

Julia knew exactly what she wanted for her wedding dress, and found herself at an impasse when she was in love with different aspects of three different dresses. "I knew I wanted an intricate back, balanced by a more simple front. And I wanted to showcase my frame with a feel that wasn't too heavy, but didn't appear flat or dull," she says. She came upon this Tadashi Shoji gown, inspired by vintage lace. She took a chance and ordered the dress online, and it was just as wonderful in person as she'd imagined.

Julia and her bridesmaids wore personalized rings featuring their names.

The bride ordered her headpiece with a slight birdcage veil from a designer in Copenhagen. It arrived fastened to a headband, but her hairstylist reattached it to a clip in order to style it into her hair.

Bride's bouquet of craspedia and baby's breath. Bridesmaid's simple baby's breath bouquet.

Bridesmaids in mis-matched nude dresses.

The couple sourced their flowers from the San Francisco Flower Market. Julia carried a bouquet of craspedia, while her bridesmaids carried simple bunches of baby's breath.

The bridesmaids wore neutral-hued knee-length dresses with vintage details, allowing them to pick something original that would complement Julia's gown. Hieu and his groomsmen wore matching gray suits, with the groomsmen wearing different colored ties.

Bride and groom at the Cornerstone Sonoma in California.

One of the reasons Hieu and Julia picked Cornerstone Sonoma as their venue was the plethora of options for photographs. "It also helped keep our guests entertained and occupied in between events," she says.

An outdoor wedding ceremony at Cornerstone Sonoma.

Baby's breath wedding aisle decor.

A DIY wedding ceremony altar decorated with tulle ribbons.

The outdoor ceremony was incredibly simple. Julia saw an altar she loved on Pinterest, and her aunt recreated it for the wedding with tulle and jars of flowers. The couple worked with the officiant to personalize their vows.
At the end of the aisle was a set of freestanding doors that Julia and Hieu had built. The doors were opened for Hieu and the wedding party's processional, then closed again before being reopened for Julia and her father.

Warm weather and a late sunset meant the couple and their guests could celebrate outdoors. Tables were arranged under an open-sided tent.

Escort cards arranged near a typewriter at a California wedding.

Escort cards were playfully displayed on a miniature clothesline strung between wine bottles. Collected jars overflowed with craspedia and baby's breath, while tea-stained table numbers told guests where to sit.

The couple's seats at the sweetheart table were adorned with handmade chalkboard-style Mr. & Mrs. Signs.

The wedding cake and dessert bar were a real labor of love. The maid of honor prepared all of the sweets, then she and the bridesmaids held layers of cake in their laps as they drove from the hotel to the venue. "We'd underestimated cooler space!" says Julia. After the ceremony, the maid of honor stepped out to assemble and decorate the cake during cocktail hour.

Though there were a few bumps in the road, there were lots of helping hands to make sure the wedding was a success. Says Julia, "Everything came together in the end!"

This calm, cool, and collected couple is excited to buy their first house, but "we're surprisingly still very casual about the whole 'married' thing," says Julia, "but then again, that's just the type of people we are."

Ceremony & Reception Venue: Cornerstone Sonoma || Day-of Coordinator: Romielyn of Very Merry Events || Bride's Wedding Dress: Tadashi Shoji || Shoes: Valentino || Hair: Ivadell Vida || Makeup: Mary Craig || Wedding Bands: Willow Glen Diamond Company || Invitations & Paper Goods: DIY || Music: DJ Teddy Rockspin || Catering & Rentals: Alex's Catering || Cake: Made by the Maid of Honor || Photography: Sun and Life Photography

—Jaimie Schoen

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A Rustic, Elegant Wedding at the San Francisco Asian Art Museum

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Nov 122013
 

High school carpools may not immediately conjure notions of love and romance, but Danielle and Jonathon would argue otherwise. The couple met as they started high school, carpooling from rural Washington to Portland, OR every day for school. They drove back and forth together for nearly three years before their friendship evolved into something more after their junior prom. College put buses, planes, and trains between them, but the distance was no match for their love.

In 2012, the couple (now expert travelers) headed to Paris after a conference in Belgium. Jonathon surprised Danielle with a romantic dinner on the Champs-Élysées that ended with dessert on the hotel's roof–and Jonathon down on one knee as the lights of Paris twinkled in the background. Danielle said "oui!" and the couple began to plan an elegant, rustic and romantic wedding in San Francisco on May 17th, 2013.

A feeling of warmth and comfort was incredibly important to Danielle and Jonathon as they planned their wedding. They shared that message with their guests from the first moment, choosing luxurious letterpress invitations with a delicate lace pattern.

Modern Trousseau lace wedding dress and lace Stuart Weitzman shoes.

Danielle's lace Modern Trousseau gown had a decidedly vintage feel. Subtle ruching at the waist highlighted the bride's waist, while re-embroidered lace at the bodice and hem "gave the dress a stunning three-dimensional look," says Danielle. The lace theme was carried into Danielle's accessories. Her champagne-hued peep-toe pumps sparkled sweetly under her dress.

Danielle kept her jewelry simple to really let the dress shine. She echoed her beaded belt with a custom crystal bracelet.

Jonathon paired his tuxedo with a silver-blue bowtie and a white pocket square. His boutonniere featured three pearl-accented stephanotis blossoms and a soft dusty miller leaf.

Danielle carried a slightly loose bouquet in pink, peach and white. Overblown peonies, spray roses, sweet peas and lisianthus gave her bouquet a soft and voluminous feel.

Bride with bridesmaids in blush chiffon dresses by Jenny Yoo.

The bridesmaids wore blush chiffon dresses in a convertible design, allowing each girl to customize her look. They all carried smaller bouquets that echoed the flowers in Danielle's.

Jonathon's groomsmen all wore tuxedos and bow ties.

The ceremony took place at the Mission Dolores in San Francisco. Danielle and Jonathon sought out an historic Catholic church, and were thrilled to be able to exchange vows a mere block away from where the bride's grandparents first met, giving the location even more personal significance.

The flower girl, who "was excellent," says Danielle, carried a basket overflowing with roses, peonies, lisianthus and hydrangeas.

The church's ornate altar was a dramatic, humbling backdrop for the couple's vows. It added another layer of elegance and formality to Jonathon and Danielle's wedding day.

Rustic wedding reception tables at the Asian Art Museum in San Francisco.
Wedding reception table with pink runners, peonies and candles.

San Francisco's Asian Art Museum was the ideal combination of unique architecture, warmth, and refined grandeur. The couple rented antique furniture and topped the tables with lush flowers and candles to create a rustic, homey feeling in such a beautiful space. Soft pink runners, bold pink peonies and scattered candles transformed the museum's Samsung Hall into the wedding reception of Danielle and Jonathon's dreams.

Vignettes of vintage furniture created three separate sitting areas throughout the reception, encouraging guests to mingle and make themselves at home in the museum.

The surf-and-turf menu featured butter-poached filet mignon, Maine lobster, Dungeness crab chowder and (a crowd favorite) cornmeal-bacon madeleines.

The couple swapped out the standard guest book for a more playful art piece featuring a whale and three-dimensional balloons. Guests were encouraged to wish the couple luck "from here to the moon," says Jonathon.

White lace wedding cake with pink sugar peonies.

The four-tiered wedding cake, topped with fondant peonies and roses, was decorated with lace details to match Danielle's dress and the invitation suite. The cake inside was a combination of vanilla, strawberry, and red velvet layers.

Later in the evening, guests got to indulge in a Nitro Ice Cream Brownie Sundae station. Ice cream was made-to-order using liquid nitrogen, with flavors ranging from malted chocolate with caramelized Rice Krispies to vanilla bean with bourbon caramel. The favors were a nod to Danielle and Jonathon's Paris engagement: A box of pastel-hued macarons.

So what has life been like for these high school sweethearts since they said "I Do"? Married life began with a honeymoon in Bora Bora, where they stayed in an "epic over-water bungalow," says Danielle. After the months of wedding planning, the couple felt that they had a void to fill, so they took on a new project. They've embarked on a culinary adventure, cooking unique dishes (and making good use of their wedding gifts in the process).

Their advice? "Plan early, plan often, be open minded, and have fun! We planned our wedding together with little advice or direction from our family, which made it a unique experience shared between just the two of us," says Danielle.

Ceremony Venue: Mission Dolores || Reception Venue: Asian Art Museum || Planner: Jubilee Lau Events || Bride's Wedding Dress: Modern Trousseau || Veil and Jewelry: Sara Gabriel || Shoes: Stuart Weitzman || Hair & Makeup: Mimi & Taylor || Wedding Bands: Mark Hadley of The Diamond Reserve || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Yoo || Groom and Groomsmen's Tuxedos: Black by Vera Wang || Florist: Nancy Liu Chin || Invitations & Paper Goods: Lucky Luxe || Catering: Componere Fine Catering || Cake: Inticing Creations || Entertainment: Jason Mitchell || Guest Book: SuzyShoppe || Rentals: One True Love Vintage Rentals, Classic Party Rentals, La Tavola Linen || Photography: Sarah Peet Photography

—Jaimie Schoen

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A California Wedding at the Ritz-Carlton in Dana Point With Old-World Charm

 California, Classic, Formal, Monique Lhuillier, Pink, Real Wedding, Real Weddings, Romantic, Spring, Traditional, Winter  Comments Off on A California Wedding at the Ritz-Carlton in Dana Point With Old-World Charm
Oct 312013
 

Though their families had known each other for years - Fitz's parents were guests at Kilian's parents' wedding in 1967 - Kilian, 34, and Fitz, 38, didn't meet in person until the summer of 2009, when a family barbecue brought them both to Chicago, and to one another. In August of 2012, a 24-hour trip to Ft. Worth was kicked off with a proposal, marking the beginning of Kilian and Fitz's six-month engagement.

As Kilian puts it, "Our vision was...a very intimate party with touches of our favorite things. Our goal was to make our wedding really fun and a big celebration of love." Shades of orange and pink gave the day a romantic West Coast feel that was a true reflection of the couple and their relationship. Wed on March 16, 2013, their ceremony at the Serra Chapel at the Mission San Juan Capistrano and reception at the Ritz-Carlton in Dana Point were pure California love.

Simple, elegant invitations by Crane & Co. were accented with scrolled calligraphy.

Fitz proposed with an emerald-cut diamond ring. His big plan, to propose to Kilian with a bowl of ring pops after dinner in Dallas, was scrapped when Kilian's flight was delayed. Upon her arrival in Ft. Worth, she dropped her bags at the hotel and made a beeline for the elevator down to the restaurant. Only when she realized that Fitz hadn't followed her down the hallway did Kilian return to their hotel room to discover him down on one knee.

Kilian "had a vision" of her dream wedding dress. She knew she wanted lace, as well as a design that coordinated with the style of the church's Spanish architecture. Monique Lhuillier's talent with lace made the dress selection an easy decision.

Glitter-covered Christian Louboutin pumps added a playful twist to the classic lace wedding dress.

A cathedral-length mantilla veil was the finishing touch on Kilian's bridal ensemble. The veil has been in her family for over 50 years, and was worn by her mother, aunts, cousins, and sisters. "It was very special to wear it on our wedding day."

Kilian's classic all-white bouquet featured peonies, roses, ranunculuses and sweet peas. The mix of petals created soft, delicate texture.

The towering Spanish architecture of the Mission San Juan Capistrano provided a striking backdrop for portraits of the wedding party.

Killian's bridesmaids were outfitted in coral-hued frocks from J.Crew's bridesmaid collection. Kilian had her six bridesmaids pick their favorite style in this cheery hue, which they accessorized with nude pumps and statement necklaces. Pink peony bouquets played off of the bright dress color.

The groom and groomsmen were outfitted in classic black tuxedos.

The traditional architecture and Old-World details of the Serra Chapel provided a beautiful background for Kilian and Fitz's first look.

"We are a very Catholic couple, so getting married in the Catholic Church was important to us," says Kilian. "The Serra Chapel is intimate and beautiful, so we were lucky to have our ceremony in such a holy place."

Fitz's sharp tuxedo, accented with a white peony boutonniere, is by Tom Ford. He stuck with tradition, pairing the notched lapels with a classic bow tie.

Fitz and Kilian love to travel, so they had a sign made with all of the places they'd visited together. Destinations ranged from Los Cabos to Cape Town.

Salt-rimmed margaritas awaited guests at the cocktail hour, setting the mood for the celebration to come.

Kilian gave a nod to her native Orange County by featuring sliced oranges in the flower arrangements. Here, an oversized arrangement of sweet peas, hydrangeas and peonies decorate the table of escort cards, which were created by Jen Simpson Design.

A mariachi band greeted Kilian and Fitz's 145 guests as they arrived at the Ritz-Carlton. Says a guest, "They definitely set the tone for a fun fiesta celebrating you both!"

The bride and groom went on an African safari for their honeymoon shortly after the wedding, so they named each table after an animal they hoped to see on their upcoming trip. The table names were printed in a peachy-coral hue, matching the tablecloths and arrangement of peonies, orchids and sweet peas.

Raspberry-colored tables were topped with branches of white phalaenopsis orchids and hanging tea lights.

Though the main focus was the dessert and candy bar, Fitz and Kilian also cut into a coconut cake with cream cheese filling. Pink peonies and gold bands gave the simple cake some festive flair.

"Fitz loves candy, so instead of serving a traditional wedding cake, we had a dessert bar with sweets and a separate candy bar with the groom's favorite candy selections," says Kilian.

The bride and groom shared their first dance to Ben Folds' The Luckiest. Kilian's tips for couples currently planning their weddings? "Make lots of lists, get recommendations from a friend, and hire Brooke Keegan as your wedding planner! You'll be so glad you did!"

The couple left the reception through a wave of sparklers, heading toward a safari honeymoon - and happily ever after. Kilian say that married life has been pure bliss, and that her wedding day was "the best day I've ever had!"

Ceremony Venue: Serra Chapel at Mission San Juan Capistrano || Reception Venue: Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel || Planner: Brooke Keegan || Bride's Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier || Hair: Alissa Smith of Meche Salon Los Angeles || Makeup: Berit of Makeup by Berit || Veil: Family Heirloom || Shoes: Christian Louboutin || Jewelry: Van Cleef & Arpels || Wedding Bands: Tiffany & Co. || Bridesmaids' Dresses: J. Crew || Groom's Tuxedo: Tom Ford || Invitations: Crane & Co. || Paper Goods: Jen Simpson Design || Florist: Karla Flores of Elegant by Design || Catering and Cake: Ritz-Carlton Laguna Niguel || Music: West Coast Music || Rentals: La Tavola Linen, Chiavari Chair Rentals || Lighting: Lighten Up Inc. || Favors: Pacific Photobooths || Transportation: VIP Limo || Photographer: Lane Dittoe Fine Art Wedding Photography

—Jaimie Schoen

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An Elegant California Wedding at The Ojai Valley Inn and Spa

 California, Classic, Formal, Monique Lhuillier, Real Weddings, Romantic, Romona Keveza, Spring, White  Comments Off on An Elegant California Wedding at The Ojai Valley Inn and Spa
Oct 282013
 
Bride and groom on bicycles in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin, 32, an attorney and account, and Billy, 32, an attorney, had known each other since childhood, but didn't get together until their eyes met at a bar—while Karin was on a date with someone else! After an ultra-romantic surprise proposal in Karin's favorite garden, the couple searched for a secluded, naturally beautiful venue for their traditional wedding. The Ojai Valley Inn and Spa, with its sweeping grounds and stunning Mediterranean architecture, captured the quiet elegance they were searching for.

With simple décor and an understated ivory and champagne palette, Karin and Billy let the beauty of their surroundings—and a tight-knit, hilarious family—speak up at the 170-person bash. In the couple's own words, "We wanted to combine Karin's dream of creating a Jane Austen ball at Netherfield Park with Billy's laid-back beach volleyball style. Ojai was an easy choice because it is relaxed yet elegant, at once comfortable and beautifully manicured, and it feels like it's worlds away from the city."

Wedding rings in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Billy proposed on Karin's birthday in one of their favorite spots, the garden of the Getty Museum. As he dropped to one knee, he pointed across the garden, where Karin's friends and family waited with cameras and well-wishes. "It was a magical beginning to a fabulous engagement," Karin says.

Ojai, California wedding invitation

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple searched for a location close to Los Angeles that felt tucked away, and Ojai, California fit the bill. "When we found the Ojai Presbyterian Church, Karin felt chills," Billy said. "We had to get married in this quaint town."

Ojai, California wedding stationery suite

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

A friend designed Karin and Billy's invitations, welcome packages, menus, table numbers, escort cards, and all other paper goods, which included a customized monogram and black-and-gold detailing.

All-white wedding bouquets

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin and her bridesmaids carried all-white bouquets of peonies, roses and tulips, which matched their color palette of ivory, cream, and champagne.

Silk kimonos for bridesmaids

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin toasted the day with her bridesmaids in silk kimonos. Her 'maids later changed into short Monique Lhuillier dresses, chosen for their simple elegance.

Romona Keveza wedding dress

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin chose a Romona Keveza dress that made her feel like Cinderella. "It looked different from all angles," she says. "It was timeless and classic."

Royal blue Manolo Blahnik wedding shoes

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Royal blue, jeweled Manolo Blahnik pumps were the perfect "something blue". "They popped in every picture," Karin says.

Bride and groom first look

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple exchanged vows in the Ojai Presbyterian Church, in a traditional ceremony officiated by Billy's longtime family reverend.

Bridal party in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

After the ceremony, guests moved to the Ojai Valley Inn and Spa, a Mediterranean-style resort where Lake Bell tied the knot this year, for cocktails, dinner, and dancing. "We knew our guests would feel the palpable calm that comes over you as you enter the gate," Karin says.

Twin flower girls in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin's twin flower girls were children of a friend, and reveled in their "princess moment" as they twirled down the aisle in matching tulle dresses.

Champagne-colored Monique Lhuillier bridesmaid dresses

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

One of Karin's bridesmaids helped her pick the knee-length, universally flattering champagne shifts.

White peony and ranunculus wedding bouquet

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin's romantic white peony and ranunculus bouquet complemented her sweeping, dramatic gown.

Green succulent wedding boutonniere

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Pale green succulents and foliage—a classic California combination—popped against Billy's neutral suit.

Tall white hydrangea wedding centerpieces

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple alternated long tables with round ones in the inn's Anascapa Ballroom, to avoid a corporate-event vibe. Long tables were scattered with tall arrangements of classic white hydrangeas.

Wedding menu with sage

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The menu included an avocado salad with lemon truffle vinaigrette, a prime rib roast, truffle mac and cheese, salmon, and vegetarian risotto.

Wedding sweetheart table in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The newlyweds were regaled with toasts from Karin's dad, Billy's brother, and Karin's maid-of-honor. No one let Billy forget his reign as Cosmopolitan's California Bachelor of the Year in 2009!

Five white wedding cakes

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin and Billy served not just one wedding cake, but five, baked on-site at the Ojai Valley Inn and Spa. Flavors included vanilla with fresh fruit and vanilla cream, strawberry violet cake with cream cheese, and chocolate cake with fudge and mousse.

Bride and groom in Mr. and Mrs. chairs

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple spent the night cutting up the dance floor with guests before departing on a getaway to Hawaii. Karin's advice for brides-to-be? "Start early! It makes the day and the time leading up to it much more enjoyable."

Ceremony Venue: Ojai Presbyterian Church || Reception Venue: Ojai Valley Inn and Spa || Planner: All You Need Is Love Events || Bride's Wedding Dress: Romona Keveza || Hair: Gayle Collings of Salon Farouk || Makeup: Kacee Geoffroy || Veil: The Bride's Mother || Shoes: Manolo Blahnik || Jewelry & Wedding Bands: Grady Taylor || Groom's Tuxedo: Jos. A. Bank || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Monique Lhuillier || Bridesmaids' Gifts: Comfy Clothing || Invitations & Paper Products: Alissa Bell Press || Florist: Rock Rose Floral Design || Catering and Cake: Ojai Valley Inn and Spa || Music: Bentley Foy || Rentals: Ventura Rental Center || Lighting: Bella Vista Designs || Linens: La Tavola || Photographer: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

—Amanda First

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Oct 282013
 
Bride and groom on bicycles in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin, 32, an attorney and account, and Billy, 32, an attorney, had known each other since childhood, but didn't get together until their eyes met at a bar—while Karin was on a date with someone else! After an ultra-romantic surprise proposal in Karin's favorite garden, the couple searched for a secluded, naturally beautiful venue for their traditional wedding. The Ojai Valley Inn and Spa, with its sweeping grounds and stunning Mediterranean architecture, captured the quiet elegance they were searching for.

With simple décor and an understated ivory and champagne palette, Karin and Billy let the beauty of their surroundings—and a tight-knit, hilarious family—speak up at the 170-person bash. In the couple's own words, "We wanted to combine Karin's dream of creating a Jane Austen ball at Netherfield Park with Billy's laid-back beach volleyball style. Ojai was an easy choice because it is relaxed yet elegant, at once comfortable and beautifully manicured, and it feels like it's worlds away from the city."

Wedding rings in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Billy proposed on Karin's birthday in one of their favorite spots, the garden of the Getty Museum. As he dropped to one knee, he pointed across the garden, where Karin's friends and family waited with cameras and well-wishes. "It was a magical beginning to a fabulous engagement," Karin says.

Ojai, California wedding invitation

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple searched for a location close to Los Angeles that felt tucked away, and Ojai, California fit the bill. "When we found the Ojai Presbyterian Church, Karin felt chills," Billy said. "We had to get married in this quaint town."

Ojai, California wedding stationery suite

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

A friend designed Karin and Billy's invitations, welcome packages, menus, table numbers, escort cards, and all other paper goods, which included a customized monogram and black-and-gold detailing.

All-white wedding bouquets

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin and her bridesmaids carried all-white bouquets of peonies, roses and tulips, which matched their color palette of ivory, cream, and champagne.

Silk kimonos for bridesmaids

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin toasted the day with her bridesmaids in silk kimonos. Her 'maids later changed into short Monique Lhuillier dresses, chosen for their simple elegance.

Romona Keveza wedding dress

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin chose a Romona Keveza dress that made her feel like Cinderella. "It looked different from all angles," she says. "It was timeless and classic."

Royal blue Manolo Blahnik wedding shoes

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Royal blue, jeweled Manolo Blahnik pumps were the perfect "something blue". "They popped in every picture," Karin says.

Bride and groom first look

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple exchanged vows in the Ojai Presbyterian Church, in a traditional ceremony officiated by Billy's longtime family reverend.

Bridal party in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

After the ceremony, guests moved to the Ojai Valley Inn and Spa, a Mediterranean-style resort where Lake Bell tied the knot this year, for cocktails, dinner, and dancing. "We knew our guests would feel the palpable calm that comes over you as you enter the gate," Karin says.

Twin flower girls in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin's twin flower girls were children of a friend, and reveled in their "princess moment" as they twirled down the aisle in matching tulle dresses.

Champagne-colored Monique Lhuillier bridesmaid dresses

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

One of Karin's bridesmaids helped her pick the knee-length, universally flattering champagne shifts.

White peony and ranunculus wedding bouquet

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin's romantic white peony and ranunculus bouquet complemented her sweeping, dramatic gown.

Green succulent wedding boutonniere

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Pale green succulents and foliage—a classic California combination—popped against Billy's neutral suit.

Tall white hydrangea wedding centerpieces

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple alternated long tables with round ones in the inn's Anascapa Ballroom, to avoid a corporate-event vibe. Long tables were scattered with tall arrangements of classic white hydrangeas.

Wedding menu with sage

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The menu included an avocado salad with lemon truffle vinaigrette, a prime rib roast, truffle mac and cheese, salmon, and vegetarian risotto.

Wedding sweetheart table in Ojai, California

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The newlyweds were regaled with toasts from Karin's dad, Billy's brother, and Karin's maid-of-honor. No one let Billy forget his reign as Cosmopolitan's California Bachelor of the Year in 2009!

Five white wedding cakes

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

Karin and Billy served not just one wedding cake, but five, baked on-site at the Ojai Valley Inn and Spa. Flavors included vanilla with fresh fruit and vanilla cream, strawberry violet cake with cream cheese, and chocolate cake with fudge and mousse.

Bride and groom in Mr. and Mrs. chairs

Photo: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

The couple spent the night cutting up the dance floor with guests before departing on a getaway to Hawaii. Karin's advice for brides-to-be? "Start early! It makes the day and the time leading up to it much more enjoyable."

Ceremony Venue: Ojai Presbyterian Church || Reception Venue: Ojai Valley Inn and Spa || Planner: All You Need Is Love Events || Bride's Wedding Dress: Romona Keveza || Hair: Gayle Collings of Salon Farouk || Makeup: Kacee Geoffroy || Veil: The Bride's Mother || Shoes: Manolo Blahnik || Jewelry & Wedding Bands: Grady Taylor || Groom's Tuxedo: Jos. A. Bank || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Monique Lhuillier || Bridesmaids' Gifts: Comfy Clothing || Invitations & Paper Products: Alissa Bell Press || Florist: Rock Rose Floral Design || Catering and Cake: Ojai Valley Inn and Spa || Music: Bentley Foy || Rentals: Ventura Rental Center || Lighting: Bella Vista Designs || Linens: La Tavola || Photographer: Laura Grier of Beautiful Day Photography

—Amanda First

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Oct 232013
 

"Once in a while...Right in the middle of an ordinary life...Love comes along and brings you a fairytale." From the proposal to the planning, ceremony to reception, Jennifer and Rob's Memphis, Tennessee wedding on April 27, 2013 was a fairytale, full of romantic and personal moments. Jennifer was completely surprised when Rob got down on one knee during a dinner celebrating her new job. The couple was surrounded by their friends and family as she said "yes!" and it was only natural that they said "I Do" in the same fashion.

Elegant romance was the vision, which Jennifer put together with help from her mother, her planner, and Pinterest. Blush, ivory, champagne, and a hint of pint created a dreamlike feel ideal for the evening celebration. And when the day finally came, Jennifer and Rob danced, ate and celebrated with the people they love most—especially one another.

For her 30th birthday, Rob took Jennifer to New York City and surprised her with a personal shopper for the day. She headed to Vera Wang, where she fell in love with a sleek strapless design with an intricate tulle skirt—a far cry from the embellished gown she'd pictured herself in.

Two lace garters, complete with pearl and crystal details, gave Jennifer's bridal ensemble a hidden touch of shine.

As Rob concluded his toast congratulating Jennifer on her new job, he looked at her and said "...and I want to take care of her for the rest of my life" and got down on one knee.

Crystal-embellished pumps shimmered beneath Jennifer's simple, elegant wedding gown.

For the formal church ceremony and elegant evening reception, Rob skipped the rental shop and purchased a suave custom tuxedo.

The silk ribbon on Jennifer's bouquet was fixed with a pearl brooch that belongs to her 100-year-old grandmother, as well as a tie bar from her late grandfather. Her grandmother wasn't able to attend, but the ceremony was streamed on Skype so that she could still be a part of the day.

White hydrangeas and peonies and blush garden roses matched the soft color scheme, while pink peonies added a pop of playful color.

The bridesmaids' bouquets featured blush garden roses and white hydrangeas, ranunculus and roses.

Jennifer's ten bridesmaids chose between strapless or one-shoulder chiffon gowns in blush. The simple shape flattered the clean, elegant design of Jennifer's gown.

The groomsmen wore tuxedos with bow ties, while Rob and the ring bearer wore straight ties for a slightly different look.

The couple's niece and goddaughter served as flower girls, while the bride's cousin's son was the ring bearer. The three were "so excited," performing beautifully even with such a long aisle in the church.

The fit-and-flare design of Jennifer's wedding dress beautifully flattered her curves. Waves of tulle on the skirt added visual interest and unique texture.

The ceremony took place at St. Peter Catholic Church in Memphis, but had both a Catholic priest and Methodist pastor perform the ceremony instead of having a full Catholic mass.

The church's ornate décor perfectly fit Jennifer and Rob's vision for a romantic fairytale wedding day.

Soft pink tulips and silver votive candles topped the tables, casting a warm glow over the room.

Tall silver candelabras, topped with tulips and peonies, were draped with crystals.

The wedding party's table was decorated with tall vases featuring submerged tulips and floating candles. Instead of favors, the couple offered their guests mint green cake pops and made a donation to the Humane Society in honor of their guests.

The ceiling was draped with soft tan fabric to create a romantic, intimate feel. Iron chandeliers covered in greenery were hung from the ceiling.

Each tier of Rob and Jennifer's wedding cake featured a different flavor, including raspberry, chocolate and strawberry. A delicate ivory lace pattern was piped on blush fondant, and the cake was topped with fresh pink peonies.

Guests were invited to leave notes and advice for the couple in an antique trunk.

The bride and groom left the ceremony in a shower of sparklers. Jennifer's advice for brides? "Just remember that, no matter what happens, this day is about you two. Make it special and don't worry about what everyone else thinks!"

Ceremony Venue: St. Peter Catholic Church, Memphis, TN || Reception Venue: National Ornamental Metal Museum || Planner: Amy Miller Weddings || Bride's Wedding Dress: Vera Wang || Hair: Tanzi Rene || Makeup: Seven Moore || Veil: Romona Keveza || Garter: Bridal By Vanessa || Shoes: Benjamin Adams || Jewelry: Attic of Treasures 2007 || Wedding Bands: Doron Jewelers, Cartier || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Watters || Groom's Tuxedo: Oak Hall || Invitations & Paper Goods: RSVP Stationers || Florist: Holliday Flowers || Catering and Cake: Ms. Muff'n || Ceremony Music: Jane Smedley and Mary Jo Hoffsommer || Reception Music: Barley Legal, Dingo Entertainment || Favors: Patti Cakes || Transportation: Tennessee Limousine Service || Photographer: Erica Beckman of Clean Plate Pictures

—Jaimie Schoen

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A Romantic Wedding at the National Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis

 Classic, Memphis, Pink, Real Weddings, Romantic, Spring, Traditional, Vera Wang, Watters, White  Comments Off on A Romantic Wedding at the National Ornamental Metal Museum in Memphis
Oct 232013
 

"Once in a while...Right in the middle of an ordinary life...Love comes along and brings you a fairytale." From the proposal to the planning, ceremony to reception, Jennifer and Rob's Memphis, Tennessee wedding on April 27, 2013 was a fairytale, full of romantic and personal moments. Jennifer was completely surprised when Rob got down on one knee during a dinner celebrating her new job. The couple was surrounded by their friends and family as she said "yes!" and it was only natural that they said "I Do" in the same fashion.

Elegant romance was the vision, which Jennifer put together with help from her mother, her planner, and Pinterest. Blush, ivory, champagne, and a hint of pint created a dreamlike feel ideal for the evening celebration. And when the day finally came, Jennifer and Rob danced, ate and celebrated with the people they love most—especially one another.

For her 30th birthday, Rob took Jennifer to New York City and surprised her with a personal shopper for the day. She headed to Vera Wang, where she fell in love with a sleek strapless design with an intricate tulle skirt—a far cry from the embellished gown she'd pictured herself in.

Two lace garters, complete with pearl and crystal details, gave Jennifer's bridal ensemble a hidden touch of shine.

As Rob concluded his toast congratulating Jennifer on her new job, he looked at her and said "...and I want to take care of her for the rest of my life" and got down on one knee.

Crystal-embellished pumps shimmered beneath Jennifer's simple, elegant wedding gown.

For the formal church ceremony and elegant evening reception, Rob skipped the rental shop and purchased a suave custom tuxedo.

The silk ribbon on Jennifer's bouquet was fixed with a pearl brooch that belongs to her 100-year-old grandmother, as well as a tie bar from her late grandfather. Her grandmother wasn't able to attend, but the ceremony was streamed on Skype so that she could still be a part of the day.

White hydrangeas and peonies and blush garden roses matched the soft color scheme, while pink peonies added a pop of playful color.

The bridesmaids' bouquets featured blush garden roses and white hydrangeas, ranunculus and roses.

Jennifer's ten bridesmaids chose between strapless or one-shoulder chiffon gowns in blush. The simple shape flattered the clean, elegant design of Jennifer's gown.

The groomsmen wore tuxedos with bow ties, while Rob and the ring bearer wore straight ties for a slightly different look.

The couple's niece and goddaughter served as flower girls, while the bride's cousin's son was the ring bearer. The three were "so excited," performing beautifully even with such a long aisle in the church.

The fit-and-flare design of Jennifer's wedding dress beautifully flattered her curves. Waves of tulle on the skirt added visual interest and unique texture.

The ceremony took place at St. Peter Catholic Church in Memphis, but had both a Catholic priest and Methodist pastor perform the ceremony instead of having a full Catholic mass.

The church's ornate décor perfectly fit Jennifer and Rob's vision for a romantic fairytale wedding day.

Soft pink tulips and silver votive candles topped the tables, casting a warm glow over the room.

Tall silver candelabras, topped with tulips and peonies, were draped with crystals.

The wedding party's table was decorated with tall vases featuring submerged tulips and floating candles. Instead of favors, the couple offered their guests mint green cake pops and made a donation to the Humane Society in honor of their guests.

The ceiling was draped with soft tan fabric to create a romantic, intimate feel. Iron chandeliers covered in greenery were hung from the ceiling.

Each tier of Rob and Jennifer's wedding cake featured a different flavor, including raspberry, chocolate and strawberry. A delicate ivory lace pattern was piped on blush fondant, and the cake was topped with fresh pink peonies.

Guests were invited to leave notes and advice for the couple in an antique trunk.

The bride and groom left the ceremony in a shower of sparklers. Jennifer's advice for brides? "Just remember that, no matter what happens, this day is about you two. Make it special and don't worry about what everyone else thinks!"

Ceremony Venue: St. Peter Catholic Church, Memphis, TN || Reception Venue: National Ornamental Metal Museum || Planner: Amy Miller Weddings || Bride's Wedding Dress: Vera Wang || Hair: Tanzi Rene || Makeup: Seven Moore || Veil: Romona Keveza || Garter: Bridal By Vanessa || Shoes: Benjamin Adams || Jewelry: Attic of Treasures 2007 || Wedding Bands: Doron Jewelers, Cartier || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Watters || Groom's Tuxedo: Oak Hall || Invitations & Paper Goods: RSVP Stationers || Florist: Holliday Flowers || Catering and Cake: Ms. Muff'n || Ceremony Music: Jane Smedley and Mary Jo Hoffsommer || Reception Music: Barley Legal, Dingo Entertainment || Favors: Patti Cakes || Transportation: Tennessee Limousine Service || Photographer: Erica Beckman of Clean Plate Pictures

—Jaimie Schoen

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