I want to become a society lady Rockin' a new rock?!

From the small town of Orvieto you can spot the La Badia Di Orvieto, a 12th century abbey tucked in between the green rolling hills and small local vineyards. The scene is breathtaking and Grey Collective member Molly McKinley Designs has created an editorial celebrating it. An simple ceremony in the arched remains of the church and a cozy, candle-lit dinner within the ancient fresco stone walls are both intimate by design.  And Marta Petrioli with Flowers Living has utilized elements of the natural surroundings like olive branches and simple greenery to give a natural and gorgeous vibe.  Julie Cate was on hand to work her magic behind the lens and we’re happy to be sharing her beautiful images of the Italian countryside inspiration with you today!

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Photography: Julie Cate // Planning + Styling: Molly McKinley Designs // Floral Design: Marta Petrioli with Flowers Living // Paper Goods: Sarah Ingram // Venue: Hotel La Badia Orvieto // Hair + Makeup: Jennifer C Nieman // Jewelry: Susie Saltzman // Ring Box: The Mrs Box // Gown + Veil: BHLDN // Suit: Zara Men // Hair Accessories: January Rose Bridal // Bride Model: Lina Burgin // Groom Model: Muriel Vilela // Vow Book: Wedding Story Writer // Taper Holders: Steven Alan // Napkins: Restoration Hardware // Runner: Silk and Willow

 

 

 

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Jen and Tommy’s wedding day at Olowalu Plantation House was a vibrant destination celebration. Having been in the wedding industry for more than 15 year, it’s assumed that bride-to-be Jen would have had her whole day mapped out. But as it turns out, she leaned heavily on friends, family and trusted vendors like La Fleur Weddings & Events to help influence her big day. The result is a bright and colorful beach wedding punctuated by amazing arrangements by Teresa Sena FloralMichael & Anna Costa captured it all and we could’t love the happy images any more Enjoy!

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From the bride: Tommy and I met about 10 years ago through mutual friends while camping in the desert. At the time we were both in other relationships but maintained our friendship through time. About 5 years ago we met up again on another camping trip and had both found ourselves single again and interested in each other. It took 9 months for us to have a real first date but we were both hooked from that point on.

Tommy and I are both fairly old fashioned and both of us are pretty stubborn.  He told me he would marry me any time I asked him to and I would retort that I would marry him as soon as he asked. I’m pretty sure I win the stubborn award because I held out until one night when we closed down a restaurant on the beach and he got down on one knee to ask me to be his wife with the ring of my dreams in hand.

After the engagement we both agreed that a small, intimate wedding was the way we both wanted to go.  The island of Maui was a natural choice for us, having vacationed there we fell in love with the island and all that it offers.

Having been in the wedding and special events business for upwards of 15 years you would think this bride had her ideal day mapped out and “pinned” to the most minute detail. Nope. I was a lost little bird who had to be bullied to pin things and ended up leaning on close friends in the wedding industry to pick linens, figure out my florals and other touches that added to the day. The only things I knew that I needed and wasn’t willing to compromise on were having a coordinator and photographer that I knew and loved since these are the folks that make the day happen and document all of the details.
Dress shopping was interesting for me as I am not, and never have been, a tiny girl. With most dress shops topping out at a size 6 for samples it was almost comical trying to find “my style” at the first few shops. Fortunately I found Sara, the “dress whisperer”, at Della Curva in the San Fernando Valley who pulled out one dress after a quick chat and “get to know you” session and I was done. The strapless sweetheart bodice was a deep cream colored Chantilly lace and the skirt was layers and layers of ivory chiffon. The dress was finished off with a simple dusky rose ribbon. I was able to design earrings to match with another close friend who is a jewelry designer; she found pink freshwater pearls the size of grapes and paired them with rose gold and Herkimer diamonds.

Given our busy work and life schedules we knew we weren’t going to be able to make it to the island for any site planning, tastings or any of the other “normal” pre-wedding meetings that typically happen when you plan a year in advance. Fortunately we had access to a wedding and event planner that was not only intimately involved with weddings all over the island, but also happened to be a close trusted friend who “got” us. Jill LaFleur of LaFleur weddings was instrumental in matching us with the right vendors and orchestrating the wedding day so that I didn’t ever feel like I had to lift a finger.

One of my revelations in regard to the design and look of our wedding was that there was no one color scheme or design in anything I chose. I love color, and lots of it and was thrilled with the whimsical and colorful bouquet, ceremony decor and centerpieces that my florist, Theresa Sena, created. They paired perfectly with the fun linens from La Tavola as well as with the venue that was set on an old plantation on the beach in Olowalu. Dark wicker couches and white ottomans were placed around the dance floor and bar area for our guests to lounge and watch the festivities throughout the night. Theresa also provided the most adorable vintage mailbox for our guestbook table. Instead of a traditional guest book we opted for vintage postcards from the Hawaiian islands for our friends and family to write notes on.

Food and beverage were at the top of my list and our food caterer and beverage caterer both knocked it out of the park. Small bites and casual stations were our choice as neither of us wanted a stuffy sit down dinner. The signature cocktails were absolutely glorious, garnished with tropical flowers and made with fresh squeezed juices and local Hawaiian rum and vodka.

 

One of my very favorite moments from the wedding was the end of the night where the DJ played “Don’t Stop Believing”, the entire crowd was on the dance floor minus my sweet husband who then proceeded to rip off his wedding shirt and join the crowd. I look at the photos that Michael and Anna Costa captured of this moment and all the rest through the night and am so happy that this incredibly silly, sweet man chose me to spend his life with!

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa // Wedding Planner: Jill La Fleur La Fleur Weddings & Events // Florist: Teresa Sena Floral // Venue: Olowalu Plantation House // Music: DJ Boomshot // Catering: Mill House // Hair & Makeup: Hair & Makeup by Heather // Transportation: Akina Aloha Tours // Rentals & Lighting: Island Rents // Craft Cocktails: Garnish // Linen Rental: La Tavola Linen

 

 

Next up we’re sharing another wedding from the talented team over at Michael Costa + Anna Costa Photography. It’s fun to see how a photographer shoot different styles and this classic country club wedding is totally different from the relaxed Hawaiian vibe of the previous post captured by the same photographers. Leslie and Scott were married at Riviera Mansion/University Club in Santa Barbara. The ceremony had to be moved indoors due to weather, but the resulting vows in front of the fireplace just added to the overall vibe. We’re loving the classic details like the bride’s lace Matthew Christopher gown and all the gorgeous florals by Anna Le Pley Taylor. Check out these details and more in the lovely images by Michael Costa + Anna Costa Photography.

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What made the wedding special and unique?

Scott and I live in San Diego, but we always talked about having our wedding in Santa Barbara. We wanted our wedding to have a smalltown intimate feeling, where everyone would feel like one big family. My mom was the one who actually found our venue online and after viewing it in person, we knew it was the perfect place for us to get married. Even when my plans for an outside ceremony were canceled due to rain, we moved it into the living room in front of the fireplace which turned out more perfect than I could have ever imagined.

Tell us about the gown and where/how you found it!

My gown was Matthew Christopherand I found it at Mon Amie Bridal Salon in Costa Mesa. I was set on finding a dress with cap sleeves and after trying on a few that just weren’t right for me, my dress stylist at Mon Amie asked me to try on a dress she had picked out for me. After trying it on, she said she initially hid it from me because she didn’t want me to dismiss it automatically as it was strapless. Not only did it fit me like a glove, but it made me feel sexy and elegant. The paisley lace was unlike anything I had ever seen and stood out beautifully against the mocha underlay. I also fell in love with the buttons that went all the way down my train.

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal?

We created an area in the foyer to pay homage to our parents. Both couples are still married – a rarity these days. Our parents mean a great deal to us, and we wanted to thank them for always being supportive, loving, and a great example of what a successful marriage looks like. Another personal touch for me was the bear charm I sewed onto my garter. Scott and my step daughter Leigha’s nickname for me is Bear, so having the charm made it feel like I had them close to me all day.

What was the most memorable part of the day?

There were many memorable moments throughout the day, but the one that stands out is our ‘first look.’ It was an amazing moment to have with Scott, and I think we were more emotional here than we were at the actual ceremony!

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

We were introduced by a mutual friend. We laugh now because we can remember parties we were both at and never met!

Scott proposed to me at Basic, a restaurant in downtown San Diego. This restaurant has a special meaning in both of our hearts because it is where I told Scott I loved him for the first time. After dinner, he took me to the exact spot in front of the restaurant where I had told him I loved him and got down on one knee. I was so surprised – it was such a wonderful, surreal moment. Because no one else was around at the time, it truly felt like we were the only two people in the world at that moment. In fact, we ended up taking a photo in front of a firehouse because the firemen were the only people around!

Photographer: Michael Costa + Anna Costa Photography // Florals: Anna Le Pley Taylor // Paper Goods: Smitten on Paper, Amy Gonzales // Venue: Riviera Mansion/University Club // Rentals: Classic Party Rentals SB – Tables & Chairs // Linens: La Tavola // Videographer: Shark Pig Weddings, Wade Koch // Officiant: Jono Shaffer // Acoustic Guitarist for Ceremony: Christopher Wooley  // DJ: Nik Bordokoff // Hair/Makeup: Feathers and Fox // Hair & Makeup Design by Peggy Busch // Cake: Christine Dahl Pastries // Brides Dress: Matthew Christopher // Bridal Shop: Mon Amie Bridal Salon, Costa Mesa // Brides Shoes: Schutz // Bridesmaids Dresses: Jenny Yoo // Grooms/Groomsmen Attire: Men’s Warehouse

 

 

 

Dillingham Ranch in Oahu, Hawaii provides a tropical backdrop to this romantic styled shoot designed by Kristen Moux Events. Celebrating the natural foliage of the setting, the ceremony takes place in front of an avenue of royal palms and a reception awaits the couple beneath an old banyan tree. We love the whimsy of the hanging floral chandelier and the drama of the white blooms on the ceremony gate by Floral Inspirations. All the sophisticated, destination elegance is captured Absolutely Loved Photography for you to enjoy below!

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Photography: Absolutely Loved Photography // Event Planning and Design: Kristen Moux Events // Floral Design: Floral Inspirations // Menu Stationery: Emi Ink // Place Cards: Workshop28 // Venue: Dillingham Ranch // Linens: Les Saisons // Signature Cocktails & Beverage Service: Stir Beverage Catering // Wedding Dress: Love & Lace // Hair & Makeup: Blush Makeup & Hair // Engagement Ring: Jade by Nikolai // Cake: A Cake Life // Tableware: Maison De Ware

 

Joanna and Dave were married in an elegant and traditional ceremony and celebration coordinated by My Dandelion Event at St. Vincent’s School for Boys in San Rafael, California. Joanna recruited long time friends and bridesmaids to design the florals and calligraphy. Alyssa with Ginger Rose created pink florals with Italian vibes to honor the groom’s heritage. The color palette is soft and romantic filed with blush, ivory, and green. Set against the amazing grounds of the venue, the effect is stunning. Courtney Stockton Photography worked her magic behind the lens to capture these gorgeous images.

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What made the wedding special and unique?

Dave and I envisioned an intimate, traditional Catholic wedding that reflected his Italian heritage. The Most Holy Rosary Chapel, and St. Vincent School for Boys where it is situated, are each imbued with a rich historical European ambiance that tied in perfectly with this vision.

It was very important to us that our families be a part of our special day. My cousin had been ordained as a Catholic priest just one month prior to our wedding, so ours was his very first wedding to officiate. Dave has two sisters – one of them sang the responsorial psalms and the other eloquently performed the liturgical readings. Two of my young cousins added very memorable charm to the occasion as they proceeded down the aisle as flower girls.

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What was the most memorable part of the day?

The whole day was so memorable for us, but there are two moments that really stand out.

The first was when the church doors opened and we saw each other for the first time. Neither one of us had seen each other’s attire before the wedding, so just seeing each other was breathtaking.  Then, different but just as memorable, being announced as husband and wife and walking out on the balcony – seeing all of the people our marriage has brought together – it was spectacular!

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Tell us about the gown and where/how you found it!

At the very outset of my engagement, as I was flipping through bridal magazines, I spotted the Lela Rose “Woodlands” gown, and I instantly knew it was the dress for me! Several months later my mom and I planned a weekend of dress hunting. I hadn’t yet told her about the Lela Rose gown because I wanted her to be completely unbiased in my selection. I had lined up an appointment at Jin Wang in San Francisco. I tried on many dresses and my mom loved each one. But I will never forget the moment when I walked out in the Lela Rose gown – her eyes instantly welled up and we both began to cry.

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Tell us how you met and became engaged.

The first time we met was at a Mexican restaurant in Berkeley, CA called Comal. We sat down and ordered drinks, then being a gentleman, Dave let me select the appetizer. He didn’t tell me that he hated shrimp, and of course, I ordered the shrimp ceviche. Because Dave didn’t eat much, I began to worry that maybe he wasn’t that into me – but all turned out well on our second date!

The story on how we became engaged is pretty special for us. Dave planned a picnic at one of our favorite spots in Tiburon. It was a gorgeous sunny day when we arrived – and, it was just the two of us. Dave laid down a quilt and began unpacking things. He suddenly got down on one knee. He told me that I was the love of his life and asked me to marry him.  Of course I said yes!! He followed that up with a bottle of our favorite champagne (that he’d hidden away in our picnic basket), put on some music, and we spent that afternoon gazing at the Bay. Next to getting married, this was by far the happiest day of my life!

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Photography: Courtney Stockton Photography // Coordinator: My Dandelion Event // Florist: Ginger Rose // Calligraphy: Kendall Cameron Calligraphy & Design // Venue: St. Vincent’s School for Boys // Caterer: Ray’s Catering // Baker: Mariposa Baking // Ceremony Music: Marin String Quartet & Ensembles // Hair & Makeup: Meaganne McCandess Hair & Makeup Artist // DJ: DJ Saint Patrick at Golden State Productions // Dress: Lela Rose via Jin Wang