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

Emily and Emerson’s Charleston nuptials at Lowndes Grove incorporated many of the typical southern wedding design details including a plantation courtyard ceremony, florals by and topiaries by Out of the Garden, letterpress and (rainbow) wax seal  invitations by Alaina Polander and romantic white gowns and veils. However, the LGBT couple felt confident in their freedom to “throw tradition to the wind” in much of their personalized details. The “curated vibe—to relax and celebrate” of the day planned by our friends Ooh! Events included the couple getting ready together with all of their bridesmen and bridesmaids, a rendition of the Pulse Orlando Lin Manuel Miranda speech during the ceremony (not a dry eye in the house) and ditching all typical reception activities and instead dancing from start-to-finish. Emily and Emerson had a joint goal of staying “calm and present” during the day and they did it with joy, style and huge smiles as seen in these images captured by Brooke Boyd Photo + Film.

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What made the wedding special and unique?

From Emily: Being an LGBT couple we felt like we had a lot of freedom to throw tradition to the wind. While most of our wedding was as much of a cliché southern wedding as you can get, there were a lot of really personal details. We started  the day by doing yoga together and meditating guided by a friend. After yoga and meditating, we were able to spend the morning getting ready together with our closest friends. Getting ready together relieved all pressure; so many people love the suspense of seeing your wife walk down the aisle, but we wanted everything to be as calm and fun as possible. I think that made our wedding so unique. The entire day had a curated vibe – which was to relax and celebrate. We didn’t want anything to feel stuffy or posed and tried really hard to stay calm and be present. I would also argue the most unique part about our wedding was the amount of dancing – we skipped the activities once the reception started and instead never left the dance floor. We had two people do the worm, one person break dance, my sister did a split, and someone slid through another’s legs. WILD.

Tell us about the gowns and where/how you found them!

Emerson and I started off by going to New York with our best friends. We looked separately all day and neither of us found the dress, but we both agreed it was too hard not to share with the other. A month later, I went to Wedding Belles in New Orleans with my mom and sister and tried on the Jenny Yoo Riley I had seen in New York. Just like that, I was done! I loved so many dresses, but this one just fit the day best. Emerson on the other hand tried on dresses about four more times, when she finally tried on a Sarah Seven dress at Lovely Bride in DC and knew it was the one. It was perfectly simple with just enough modern edge to feel like her.

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal?

  1. Emerson picked out every single song that was played that day. To her, music creates the atmosphere, so she went through and chose from the prelude to the exit (and yes the afterparty). My favorite pick from her was the DJ set kicking off with “I Kissed a Girl and I Liked it” by Katy Perry.
  2. We also picked every word spoken in the ceremony with our priest. Without question the best part of the wedding (and I highly recommend everyone use this in the future) was when my friend read Lin Manuel Miranda’s speech following the Pulse Orlando shooting. It’s safe to say there wasn’t a dry eye when she got to the “and love, is love, is love, is love, is love” part.
  3. We didn’t do a traditional wedding party; Emerson has two brothers and I have two sisters so they are the only people who stood. We did ask our best girls/guys to dress within the color palette and get ready with us. We were worried it was going to be cold, so each girl laid a fur stole at their chair and exited in it.
  4. Emerson’s brother and “Man of Honor” gave the best speech I ever heard. It began with “I’ve been knowing Emerson since the early 90s” and the highlight was “I never dreamed I’d be a bridesman one day, but I can’t tell you how happy I am to be one today.”

 

What was the most memorable part of the day?

There was one moment before the ceremony started when my veil kept pulling my hair and I started getting really nervous. Emerson could sense I was nervous and pulled me into a room and said “forget it, don’t wear the veil” and gave me a big kiss. At that moment, all fears were pushed away because I knew I had picked the perfect person to spend the rest of my life with.

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

Emerson and I met the summer of 2014, when I had just graduated college and was about to move to DC. After our first date, we didn’t spend a single day apart that summer. So much so that Emerson volunteered to make the 17 hour drive with me to DC. Even though we had no intention of being in a long distance relationship, we were inseparable. Mine and Emerson’s lives fit perfectly together. We had the same values, same drive, and liked to leave parties at the same time. She is the perfect complement to all of my weaknesses and makes me a better person on a daily basis. Through the last five years together, we’ve moved seven times, had two college graduations, and embarked on brand new jobs in brand new cities. We’ve been through ups and downs, weddings, funerals, a home renovation and so much more, but through it all, Emerson made me grateful for every day. Knowing this I finally decided it was time to seal the deal so I snuck around with Susie Satzman and designed her dream ring. Over her birthday, we spent a week at home in New Orleans at my parents’ camp. One morning while we were watching the sunrise over coffee and blueberry cake donuts, I decided that was the moment. I began acting super weird and insisted she put on cute pajamas (because I wanted a good picture) and she replied “What? No. Weirdo” it was 5:30 am. Our dog had hurt his paw and she kept trying to pay attention to him and I was trying to get her to pay attention to me! Finally I started my speech and she asks “are you proposing?” and I was like “oh my gosh no” as I pulled out the ring! At this point, Emerson is thoroughly confused, laughing, and crying. Regardless, SHE SAID YES and we celebrated that night at the place her parents got engaged.

Coordination/Rentals: Ooh! Events // Photographer + Videographer: Brooke Boyd Photo + Film // Floral: Out of the Garden // Invite Suite: Alaina Polander // Venue/Catering/Bar/Cake: Lowndes Grove // Emily’s dress: Jenny Yoo, from Wedding Belles Nola // Emerson’s dress: Sarah Seven Belmont dress, from Lovely Bride // Hair: Slate Bridal Hair + Make Up // Make Up: Marisa Warren, Sarah Early, Slate Bridal Hair + Make Up // Yoga Instructor: Isabel Groedel // Ceremony Music: Bespoke Strings // Band: Tyler Kitchen + The Right Pieces // Guests Transportation: ACW Limo // Getaway Transportation: Lowcountry Valet

 

 

 

 

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Carolyn and Charles celebrated their love with a stunning autumn soiree designed by the one-and-only Kaella Lynn Events. Beautiful, gathered florals by Laura’s Floras take center stage. A sunset-inspired palette of deep yellows, bright corals, sherbets and dusty peach come to life in a spectacular ceremony arch and sprawling table arrangements. The mood is both delightful and elegant at the reception at The Barn at Green Valley (private estate) with long farm table seating and dusty blue linen accents. The Brightline Studio introduced the day with romantic calligraphy and the Pretty Please Bakeshop punctuated the event with a three-tiered cake adorned with climbing florals. The event is a vision of bold, fall colors and we could not be more entranced by all the lovely images captured by Meg Smith Photography.

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Photographer: Meg Smith Photography // Wedding Planning and Design: Kaella Lynn Events // Florist: Laura’s Floras // Paper goods: The Brightline Studio // Venue: The Barn at Green Valley (private estate) // Bridal Gown: Louvienne via Lovely Bride SF // Cake: Pretty Please Bakeshop // Bridesmaids dresses: Reformation // Grooms Suit: J Hilburn // Caterer: Paula Le Duc // Rentals: Standard Party Rentals // Lounge: One True Love Vintage Rentals // Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen // Quartet: Synchronicity Strings Entire Productions // Band: Audio Via Elan Artists // Lighting: Got Light // Hair & Makeup: Skyla Arts Beauty

Kate and Danny’s California wedding reception was celebrated at Collins Ranch, a private estate on the west side of Ojai. The venue had all the elements of Ojai that Kate grew up loving including “the weaving road through golden fields leading up to the barn and mountainside landscape with massive boulders mounted throughout.” The couple enlisted the brides sister Hilary to plan the event and Gallup & Stribling to create the vibrant autumn-hued florals. Kate had this to say about the reception “the barn opened up on every side so you felt like you were dining in nature but with the comfort of a nice seat and well dressed table!” It’s all beautiful and luck for us Sarah Ellefson Photography was on hand to capture it all.

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What made the wedding special and unique?

The whole day was so special and unbelievably stress free, which I have my generous family and sister Hilary to thank. Other than the fact that it was ‘our’ wedding (which made it the most special) what made it seem unique and different was our location we were lucky to find. We heard of Collins Ranch on the west side of Ojai through a friend who connected us with the owner. His property had all the elements of Ojai I have grown up loving. The weaving road through golden fields leading up to the barn and mountainside landscape with massive boulders mounted throughout. His barn type warehouse opened up on every side so you felt like you were dining in nature but with the comfort of a nice seat and well dressed table! The whole venue was something so familiar and dear to me but that I had never really seen as a wedding venue, so it felt unique and personal at the same time.

Danny’s family and many of our guests were flying in from out of state and a good number of them had never seen California before. From our ceremony at San Buenaventura Mission with the ocean breeze flowing through the tropical gardens, to the golden Chaparral mountain side of Collins Ranch, we could share what we love about California with all of them.

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

I had no idea what type of dress I wanted which it made it both fun and frustrating. Fun because I was open to any style, frustrating because there were too many styles! After trying on many gowns and visiting quite a few shops my mom and I finally went down to Pasadena to visit Lovely Bride, where I found my dress! There so many beautiful gowns that were in what i had narrowed down to be what I was looking for, long sleeve with bold lace. I found exactly that in the North Gown by Lovers Society. The design and texture of the lace was so unique from what I had seen, and I knew it was my dress! I also don’t think my mom would have let me leave without it, she bawled when I came out it in!

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal? 

I am from a family of gifted artists and I wanted them to be a have a hand in the decor.  One of my beautiful sisters, Monica, painted an abstract map view of the coast and mountain range that guests would be driving on from ceremony to reception. Guest loved it and I have it framed in my apartment now! My brother John sketched out a paint by numbers of the mission where the ceremony took place, and guests could pick up a paint brush and add to it while enjoying their cocktails. I am always in awe of their talent and was happy to show them off!

What was the most memorable part of the day?

It is hard to pick one moment that was most memorable because really the whole day felt like a dream. However, one that sticks out among others would have to be after the speeches took place, my brother, sister and I sang one of our favorite folk songs for our parents (and guests). We have always sang together with my brother on the guitar and since I would be moving to Virginia immediately after the wedding, I wanted to give my parents one last show of us singing together! I’ll always remember that moment.

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

We met each other in college sophomore year 2014 at Franciscan University, in Steubenville Ohio. We shared a lot of the same friend groups and happened to always be in the same social setting, all the while having deeper interest in one another (but never showing it!). End of senior year, Danny finally asked me out for our first date, and it didn’t take long for us to realize we wanted to continue what we started. Soon after dating we graduated and moved to opposite ends of the country (VA and CA) and thus began our journey of FaceTime and expensive flights to spend short visits, sometimes not even a full 48 hours. Again, it didn’t take long for us discover that we wanted to be with one another for the rest our lives; some might call it falling in love! To make this happen Danny and my sister (thanks Hilary!) planned a surprise visit and flew across the country to get on one knee, however the surprise was ruined by me curiously checking his location to figure out why my messages weren’t being delivered during his four hour flight! When I saw he was at LAX, I knew what this meant! He met me at my favorite winery and put some sparkle on my left hand!

Photography: Sarah Ellefson Photography // Planning + Coordination: Hilary Loughman // Florals: Gallup & Stribling // Venue: Ventura Mission + Collins Ranch (Private Estate) Ojai CA // Dress: Lovers Society from Lovely Bride // HMU: Hey Beautiful // DJ: DJ Mike Bruel // Rentals: Spark Creative Events / Otis & Pearl // Catering: DJ’s California Catering

 

Stephanie and Hans spent their Tuscan destination wedding weekend with their favorite “amazing people, relaxing in the villa, enjoying delicious Italian food and partying till the morning.” The event, planned by The Tuscan Wedding, was held at Villa Le Piazzole and the team behind the styling and design let the natural beauty of the venue shine with relaxed, romantic details in a palette of white. Florals were by Flowers Living, the bride designed her lovely stationery and all the stunning images of the day were captured by  Purewhite Photography.

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What made the wedding special and unique? 

We managed to get all our families and friends together for a weekend in beautiful Italy. We always knew we wanted to have a relaxed holiday feeling for our wedding and were thrilled that our 100 guests were willing to travel to Italy for us. We loved that it was a weekend so we could spend time with all those amazing people, relaxing in the villa, enjoying delicious Italian food and partying till the morning.

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

It’s an Aire Barcelona gown. I went to 2 boutiques in Antwerp. The first one was a brand new ‘boho style’ boutique, where I found some great options but didn’t get the feeling you are supposed to get. I then went with my mother to a more traditional shop (JPC in Antwerp) where they asked me to flip through binders and indicate what I liked. After I found everything too traditional  (what? Picky? Me? I have no clue), the owner told me she could understand my style from looking at my outfit and that she had the perfect dress for me. And she was right! I put it on and immediately loved it.

What were some touches added to make the wedding personal?

We chose to have a very personal ceremony where we involved friends and family members. We asked Hans’s childhood friend to serve as celebrant, my cousin and two friends are musicians while my brother, the maid of honor and best man had personal speeches. Given Hans proposed in Loch Lomond, they made up a song about us on the tones of the folksong “Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond”, complete with gestures and everything. Most of the guests were already informed and practiced without us knowing, so everyone participated during the ceremony. The song stayed inside my head during our entire honeymoon the weeks thereafter, love it!

What was the most memorable part of the day?

There were so many unforgettable moments, impossible to say just one. The atmosphere of the entire day was the thing we will remember forever. Everyone was so happy and relaxed, from the ceremony to the party. We loved how everyone danced along, my mom never left the dance floor once!

Tell us how you met and became engaged.

We met at university. We studied the same subject but Hans was in his final year and I in my second. I was in a student’s union with mutual friends who introduced us. We went to a party together and it was love at first sight. We went on a couple of dates and I immediately knew this was the man of my dreams. Hans proposed to me in Scotland in September 2017 after we were together for almost 7 years. He often had to travel there for work and during one of the final travels, I joined him for the weekend. We first spent a day exploring Edinburgh and on our second day we went for a hike in Loch Lomond where he packed the cutest lunch and afternoon tea for a picnic at the top of the mountain. After our lunch, he took out the ring, went on one knee and proposed with the most beautiful backdrop.

Wedding planner: The Tuscan Wedding // Photographer: Purewhite Photography // Florist: Flowers Living // Stationery: designed by Bride  // Venue: Villa Le Piazzole // Bride’s Dress: Aire Barcelona Gown // Catering and cake: Lodovichi Ricevimenti // Hair and makeup: Giulia Cresci // Lighting: Wedding Music & Lights // DJ: DJ Matthew // Ring Box: The Mrs. Box

 

The inspiration for this gorgeous vow renewal from Sara Lasher and Emily Fuselier Photography was not only the couple’s beautiful family but also the bride’s favorite color—soft blush. Jessika and Jeff wanted a very intimate day full of love, with their young children playing major roles. They held a small ceremony at Jessika’s grandparent’s house, which unfortunately was lost in a fire a few years back, but that did not stop Sara Lasher and team from creating something so special for the couple. The entire day was full of life, love and shades of blush, which complimented the sunshine and shades of green that the south has to offer. Flowers were by Paradise Florist, invitations, calligraphy and artwork by Chi Doan and it’s all captured in these dreamy film images from Emily Fuselier Photography.

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Photographer: Emily Fuselier Photography // Planner: Sara Lasher // Florist Designer: Paradise Florist // Invitations, Calligraphy, and Artwork: Chi Doan // Hair and makeup: J See // Wedding Dress: BHLDN // Grooms Attire: The Black Tux // Cake: Celebrations // Film Lab: Photovision Prints // Catering: 1910 // Rentals: Old New Borrowed Blue Rentals // Rentals: Pure Vintage