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

Ellie and Steve’s wedding day  is a testament to “letting the venue shine” with edited details that showcase the white-washed black-and-white patina of  The Oxford Exchange. Greenery and florals are by La Vie en Rose and an adorable tiered cake is by Chocolate Pi while Everence Photography was behind the lens capturing all the moment from getting ready to the Rolls Royce get-away.

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What made the wedding special and unique?

Honestly, our wedding was so special and unique because of the dancing!! One of the things I kept saying prior to the wedding was, “I really just want everyone to dance!” I have a family full of former competitive dancers (myself included), as well as a group of friends that are always down for a good dance party. I’m not lying when I tell you about 10 seconds into the first song of the night – we had a full dance floor. The floor stayed full until the very end! Dancing with all sides of the family as well as our closest friends truly was one of the best moments for me.

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

My gown was Stella York (style 6291) and I found it at Something Blue Bridal in my hometown, Bradenton FL! I have lots of amazing females in my family so I went with a crew consisting of my mom, two aunts, two grandmas, one sister, three cousins, and my best friend – between the eleven of us we were able to find the most beautiful gown in the store!! It was a nude-ish a-line (“moscato” was how it was described) with delicate beading. It had a tulle bottom and the waistline was so flattering. It truly felt like “classic glamour” meets “modern hipster,” which couldn’t have been more me. I loved it!

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal?

One of my favorite personal touches was our exit! Growing up, my parents would often end the day with a night-time drive through the beautiful parts of our hometown. My siblings and I would jump in the car with our dogs, blankets, and hot cocoa, and by the end of the drive, we were calmed (and maybe sometimes asleep lol). This “night-time drive” is something I’ve shared with Steve and our dog and we love it. On the night of our wedding, we left in a vintage Rolls Royce and cruised through the most beautiful parts of Tampa – Bayshore Boulevard, downtown, etc. We sipped champagne and looked at all the views. It was such a peaceful and truly glamorous end to the night. I still think back to how beautiful that drive was!

What was the most memorable part of the day?

The most memorable part of the day was when my husband and I were officially announced as Mr. & Mrs. Thomas! This started off our reception. We were preceded by our bridesmaids and groomsmen, who are truly my favorite people in the world. The DJ played a song that Steve and I have loved since the day we met (Tongue Tied by Grouplove). He had known I liked the band and had used the song as an excuse to come talk to me and eventually, ask me on a date 5+ years ago! Listening to this fun and sentimental song with my husband as we were celebrated by friends and family truly brought tears to my eyes. It was surreal.

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

Steve and I are both from the same hometown. We were two years apart in school but had mutual friends. The summer before I started college, I met Steve at a mutual friend’s party. It was a Monday and we are from a small town so the list of things to do was rather short. We ended up at the bowling alley with our friends! Neither of us are avid bowlers, so we sat on a friend’s truck bed outside and talked and talked and talked (or maybe I did and he just listened). Once we left that night, I knew had a new great friend – little did I know, I had also found my husband.

We dated for five years after that – through undergrad, grad school, moving home, adopting our first pup, moving in together  – we did everything together. On Valentine’s Day 2016, we spent the day at Rosa Fiorelli (a local vineyard) eating meats and cheeses and tasting wine. When we returned home, he asked me to marry him in front of the beautiful Manatee River (with our pup alongside). The rest is history!

 

Elizabeth & Stephen // Wedding Highlight from A Peachy Life Productions on Vimeo.

Photographer: Everence Photography // Florist: La Vie en Rose // Venue: The Oxford Exchange // Videographer: A Peachy Life Productions // DJ: Grant Hemond & Associates, Inc. // Cake: Chocolate Pi // Cocktail Music: Strings Attached // Dress: Stella York 6291 from Something Blue Bridal // Bridesmaid Dresses: Show Me Your Mumu

 

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When Amy and Jeff imagined their wedding they, they “We envisioned a place where we could bond the families, where we felt on top of the world and at peace all at the same time.” Holman Ranch was the perfect venue situated atop rolling hills with view that rival Tuscany.  Planned by Engaged & Inspired , the color palette was kept to minimal with standout details adding interest, like robust white bouquets by Gavita Flora, and a gigantic white rose wreath by Blair Dugan Floral Design, striped table napkins with custom silk and calligraphy bands, and metallic calligraphy on geodes for table numbers. We’re loving all the perfectly executed details and Carlie Statsky was behind the lens to capture all the beautiful images of the day.

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Since Jeff and I are both the last in our families to get married, we wanted to throw a timeless event for the memory books. Weddings traditionally are a union of two families, and we knew that. We envisioned a place where we could bond the families, where we felt on top of the world and at peace all at the same time. We wanted an over all experience from driving in to the town, staying all together, to an amazing party. We searched high and low for venues that would accomplish this. We thought we had found it until we drove into Holman Ranch; we were immediately speechless. It was quiet, stunning and represented both sides of our family so well. A Tuscan winery, sitting on top of rolling hills with a horse ranch onsite. Perfect.

We tried talking ourselves out of it, we even toured other sites to convince ourselves others would do. If you have been to Holman, you are one of the lucky few that know no site compares. Photos simply don’t do it justice.

After booking our wedding, the planning began. I have never been one of those girls who had all their wedding details planned out. I didn’t have to be for this venue; it would have stolen the show anyway, we just needed to accentuate it. We envisioned an affair that brought the family together, honored our Italian heritage and was simple yet took your breath away. That is exactly what our wedding turned out to be. The tables were something out of my Italian grandmother’s garden, the bar and band kept people dancing all night long, and the views of “Tuscany” kept everyone in a fantasy land. We loved every moment.

We took every opportunity to honor our families. Jeff wore his grandfathers’ pin, I wore my mother’s broaches (brought by my Grandpa in Italy) and a handkerchief my sister made on my bouquet, Jeff’s uncle officiated our union, and my grandfather stole the show with a beautiful speech. I am so thankful we had the opportunity to bring our families together on our special day.

When people ask me some of my highlights I obviously struggle since there were so many. I have noticed the ones that really stand out to me are the moments where things seemed to stand still for just a second. When I was sitting in the makeup chair watching the vendors pull the day together, imagining what Jeff was feeling, our private toast directly after the ceremony, when my sister helped me with my dress and gave me a big hug before I went to my first look, when BOTH my parents walked me down the isle and we shared a laugh, and when my grandfather delivered an amazing speech.

However, my absolute favorite moment was when we were introduced at dinner, the solid wood doors swung open, and we saw all of our friends and family in this beautiful courtyard. This moment literally took my breath away. This was the moment I realized that our family were all here bonding and celebrating, and we are now husband and wife. This is happening here and now, at this crazy beautiful event on a hilltop overlooking rolling vineyards below.

Photography: Carlie Statsky // Planning & Design: Engaged & Inspired // Floral Design: Gavita Flora // Giant Floral Wreath: Blair Dugan Floral Design // Paper Goods: Minted // Venue: Holman Ranch // Bride’s Shoes: Louboutin // Wedding Dress: Lihi Hod // Catering: Paradise Catering

 

Kate and Tom’s elegant Descanso Gardens wedding day festivities included pictures in a redwood forest, a wedding ceremony under oak trees and cocktails in a Japanese garden. Planner Demaray Events focused on celebrating the beautiful botanical garden settings with a stunning, rustic and minimal ceremony arbor by Holly Flora, an industrial romantic reception design and personal touches like the NYT crossword puzzle program by Sloan Harmony Design and custom cocktail napkins highlighting the couple’s favorite things.  You can see all the lovely details in the stunning images from Steve Cowell Photo.

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What made the wedding special and unique? 

We decided to get married in beautiful Pasadena, California, where I grew up and my parents still live. With over 90% of our guests flying in from (much) colder places, we wanted to spend as much time as possible taking advantage of the spectacular 70-degree April weather. We spent the weekend celebrating outside, starting on Friday with an afternoon at Santa Anita Racetrack, a rehearsal on the front lawn of my childhood home, and dinner and welcome cocktails at our favorite open-air restaurant. Saturday’s festivities were held at a beautiful botanical garden and included pictures in a redwood forest, a wedding ceremony under oak trees and cocktails in a Japanese garden.

Before the official wedding ceremony, we exchanged personal vows in front of Tom’s brothers, my maid of honor, and one of my closest friends. The ceremony was officiated by a dear friend who had gone to high school with Tom. He did an incredible job, writing a very personalized sermon that made everyone laugh and cry at the same time. The ceremony featured readings from Winnie the Pooh and Captain Corelli’s Mandolin and the entire wedding was watched live on FaceTime by my maternal grandparents, who weren’t able to make the trip from New York.

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

When I was dress shopping, I was looking for something pretty specific – I wanted a dress that was simple and chic, but also not boring. My mom flew up to San Francisco for the weekend to help me shop and I set up 6 different appointments at various bridal salons in and around the city. We went to appointment after appointment and found nothing that I liked. It’s amazing the looks you get when you tell people that you don’t want anything with lace, tulle, or pouf! Our last appointment of the weekend had taken us all the way out to Walnut Creek, and after six appointments and about 50 dresses, I was feeling pretty defeated. On our way to dinner, we walked past Kinsley James’ Walnut Creek store. I didn’t have an appointment, but they managed to fit me in and understood exactly the look I was going for. They pulled out the dress I ended up picking – a simple Rivini silk crepe dress with two panel cut outs.

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal? 

We wanted the wedding to feel lighthearted and had a lot of fun adding in personal details that reflected who we are as individuals and as a couple. One of our favorite things to do is to sit on the couch on Sunday mornings and do the New York Times crossword puzzle, so we added the NYT crossword puzzle from the day we started dating on the back of our programs and gave our guests little golf pencils to fill it out. I handmade our table numbers, which were little riddles that guests had to solve to get to their seats. Our specialty cocktails gave a nod to Harry Potter —we served Polyjuice Potion (a Manhattan) and Felix Felicis (a French 75). To accompany the cocktails, we made custom napkins that said “Go Cubs Go” (Tom is from Chicago) and “Of all the gin joints in all the towns in all the world, she walks into mine” (Casablanca is one of our favorite movies).

What was the most memorable part of the day? 

We had an amazing DJ who had all of our guests rocking out on the dance floor the entire night. To cap it off, he played our favorite power ballad, Aerosmith’s I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing. As Tom and I slow-danced, all of our guests formed an impromptu circle around us and swayed as we all belted out the lyrics at the top of our lungs. It was the perfect way to end an amazing day.

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

In 2013, I moved to Chicago to attend business school at Northwestern. I signed up to attend a trip for incoming students to Turkey, and Tom, a second year student at the time, was leading the trip. We bonded on the trip over our shared love of Harry Potter, crossword puzzles, and travel. When we got back home, Tom asked me out and we spent the next two years exploring Chicago and falling in love.

After graduation, I moved to San Francisco while Tom stayed in Chicago. We spent the next 6 months traveling back and forth across the country earning lots of airline miles. Tom spent Thanksgiving in Pasadena with my family, and I flew to Chicago to spend Christmas with Tom’s. Christmas is one of my very favorite times of the year, and two days before Christmas, Tom planned a day filled with a whole list of Chicago Christmas activities – a visit to the Christkindlemart to buy Christmas ornaments, an Italian dinner in Andersonville, and cocktails at our favorite Evanston speakeasy. Tom proposed at the end of the night and, after enjoying Christmas with Tom’s family, we flew to Spain and spent a whole week celebrating over tapas and wine.

Photography:  Steve Cowell Photo // Event Design & Planning: Demaray Events // Florals: Holly Flora // Paper Goods: Sloan Harmony Design // Venue: Descanso Gardens // Wedding Dress: Selma By Rivina // Wedding Dress Boutique: Kinsley James // Bride’s Shoes: M. Gemi (Fortuna) // Hair + Makeup: Bethany Colson // Groom Attire: Indochino // Videography: BGS Productions // Catering: Patina // Cake: Fantasy Frostings // Furniture & Linen Rentals: Classic Party Rentals // Specialty Rentals: 204 Events (Reception Lighting) // Music: Red Shoe L.A. (Ian)

 

Debbie and Phil relayed this overarching sentiment about their big day: “We had so much fun at our wedding.” And these images by You & Me definitely prove it. Set at Café Pinot in downtown L.A. and planned by CCL Weddings & Events, the event was filled with modern, graphic details in a pared-back palette. Stunning palm-infused centerpieces by Art with Nature are lifted high above guests giving the reception a modern, garden vibe in an urban setting. Huge smiles on the the bride and groom show up all over the images and we’re totally loving the abundance of animal appearances throughout the day. Check out all the happy moments in the photos below.

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From the bride and groom: Phil and I met in law school. We became friends during class, somewhere in the middle of ridiculously contentious battles over what constitutes a valid word in online Scrabble. The relationship evolved, and five-six-or-something-years later, we were engaged and starting to plan our wedding. We immediately agreed that we needed a planner. After meeting with Cat at CCL Weddings, however, we knew that we didn’t just need a planner, we needed CCL Weddings. We’re so thankful they were available to plan our wedding. We can’t imagine what would, and would not have happened, without them.

It has been almost two months since our wedding at Café Pinot in DTLA. When we think back on the four-day celebration, unsurprisingly, so many memories and related emotions come to mind that it’s difficult to pack them into coherent sentences. Most can only be delivered in a scattered, slipshod debut, but we managed to wrangle this overarching sentiment: We had so much fun at our wedding. Looking at pictures, I see my memory is pretty accurate as I am laughing with my mouth gaping open at maximum aperture in so many of them – not cute. (From the groom: yes cute.)

And now, the spew of some of our favorite memories from the wedding day, in staccato:

  • Our flower girl driving down the aisle in a white, toy convertible with tin cans in tow, wearing a minimalist flower crown, reflective sunglasses, an ivory tulle skirt, and the best look on her face;
  • Our two dogs waiting at the altar for the ceremony to begin;
  • Celebrating with all of our family and closest friends, together in one place;
  • A mob of eighteen exceptionally attractive and screaming bridesmaids and groomsmen demanding to change their grand entrance song to “Despacito,” while the other guests wondered what was going on;
  • Kidnapping a dwarf goat from our cocktail hour to take pictures walking across the street in DTLA;
  • Interrupting the construction workers who interrupted our vows and taking pictures with them while learning how to properly hold a shovel;
  • Inhaling fresh churros while changing into traditional Korean clothes for PaeBaek;
  • The saxophonist and percussionist playing alongside our DJ during sunset after a perfect, Southern California day;
  • The beautiful, everything-we-ever-wanted reception displayed before the façade of the LA Public Library;
  • The exquisite flowers and lush greenery;
  • Funfetti and pistachio cake (not in the same layer);
  • Collapsing on the ground in a mound of tulle, laughing hysterically, after running in circles with a wedding-crashing dog; and
  • Belting along to our last song, “We Are Young,” at the top of our lungs, in a giant huddle with our wedding party and guests.

From the groom: To me, the image that stands out the most is the moment my stunningly beautiful bride walked down the aisle. That moment cannot be described as anything other than pure perfection. The scenery was pristine, the weather was immaculate, and even our normally boisterous dog-children sat patiently at my feet. I’m fairly certain that for a brief moment, time stood still and everything was right in the world. Our wedding was an unforgettable day filled with love, laughs and countless memories that I will cherish forever.

Every detail and moment of the day, planned and unplanned, was just perfect to us. We’d do it all over, in exactly the same way.

Planning: CCL Weddings & Events // Photography: You & Me // Florist: Art with Nature // Stationery: Mari Chang // Venue/ Catering/ Cake/ Bar/ Valet: Café Pinot // Dress: Hayley Paige // Pae Baek: Cho Sun Myungju // Videography: The Cub Team // Hair & Makeup: Angie Lam // Photobooth: GC Photobooth // Desserts: Salinas Churros // Rentals: Chiavari Chair Rentals // Linens: La Tavola Linens // DJ/MC: Brandon Noel // Petting Zoo: Farm Friendz // Lighting: Amber Event Productions

 

Jessica and Justin’s elegant DC wedding is filled with classic detail, historic architecture and a muted palette that works beautifully against the views of our capital city. The event took place at DAR Constitution Hall with an outdoor ceremony and a ballroom reception filled with florals by Wild Green Yonder. The couple decided to go against the grain with a pre-ceremony cocktail hour and jazz band to get the vibes going and it was so well received, they even extended it an extra half-hour! We love all the elegant details and it’s all captured beautifully on film by Audra Wrisley.

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

While visiting New York City for my birthday, I decided to book a few appointments to try on dresses with my mom, my future mother-in-law, and a few friends. I found the gown at the second place we went to, called Wedding Atelier. The gown was designed by Christos Yiannakou, who actually happened to be there! It was an off the shoulder long sleeve corded lace bridal gown.

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal? 

Calligraphy is one of my mom’s hobbies, so she was able to design the invitation, the menu, and the placecards. She also addressed all of the envelopes! My husband’s cousin makes artisanal lip balm, so we also included two varieties of her lip balm, with custom labels, as wedding favors for all of our guests.

What was the most memorable part of the day?

Well, I think the most memorable part for both of us was the first dance. We had worked with a choreographer and had been practicing the dance for months, but it was still pretty intense to have everyone watching. While I don’t think anyone would mistake us for professionals, we ended up hitting every step. The whole process of learning the choreography, practicing and then finally doing the dance together in front of all of our family and friends was really special. It was also a huge relief when it was over!

What made the wedding special and unique? 

One thing that was unique is that we had the cocktail hour before the ceremony. We wanted people to relax and not feel rushed. People were skeptical and it took a little extra coordination, but it ended up working out really well. We had a great jazz band led by local musician Mark Meadows and everyone really seemed to have a great time, so much so that we ended up extending it for another half-hour!

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

We met in college during our senior year at Syracuse University. The house we lived in had two apartments; my friends and I lived upstairs and Justin and his friends lived downstairs. We started hanging out and found out that we had a lot in common and had a lot of fun together, and our relationship evolved from there. We dated for seven years before getting engaged! We had talked about the engagement and picked out the ring together so the engagement wasn’t a big surprise, but we had a nice evening in and celebrated with a special bottle of champagne.

Photographer: Audra Wrisley // Coordination: Meg Pearson Events // Florals: Wild Green Yonder (Lori Tran) // Stationery Designer: Bride’s Mother // Getting Ready Venue: The Willard Intercontinental DC // Ceremony & Reception Venue: DAR Constitution Hall // Dress: Christos // Shoes: Lanvin // Hair & Make Up: Lori Nansi // Catering & Rentals: Occasions Caterers

 // DJ: DJ DMAC & Assoc // Film Lab: Richard Photo Lab