Lindsay and Brad loved the idea of a destination wedding where friends and family spent an entire weekend getting to know one another. With Palm Springs as their chosen location, Stone Eagle Golf Club was a natural choice of venue with it’s spectacular mountain views. Lindsay loves neutrals and settled on a palette of blush, mauve, maroon, deep purples and grays and planner COJ Events implemented the pared-back hues in fabulous fashion. A casual elegance underlies the design in the both the outdoor ceremony and garden reception and florals by Arrangements Floral and Party Design are spilling from every detail. Stationery is by Union Street Paper, cake by Exquisite Desserts and it’s all captured by Birds of a Feather Photography.
Why did you choose Palm Springs/Desert Area as your wedding destination?
Brad and I really wanted a destination wedding. We loved the idea of our friends and family spending a few days together and really getting to know each other. Zika quickly limited our options, as we loved the idea of hot and sunny location! Palm Springs came to mind as it’s such a manageable destination and a lot of our guests had never been; it seemed perfect. Also, I loved the idea of being able to quickly fly down from SF for any wedding meetings; it made the planning process so much easier.
About 12 years ago, when I was working at Merrill Lynch, I assisted with an event at Stone Eagle Golf Club. From that day forward, that venue always stuck out in my mind. If you’ve been there, you know why. The views are spectacular. The venue sits upon these amazing mountains, and it is extremely unique. When we started looking I knew we had to check it out. And bonus, they had just redone the restaurant where we had cocktails and the reception, which is completely stunning. We spent a full day in Palm Springs venue hunting, and Stone Eagle was our last spot to check out. The minute we walked in, we knew. It really takes your breath away. We really wanted a unique venue, something different. And Stone Eagle was just that. You also get to head up the mountain in these sporty Jeep safari vehicles (the guests loved it!).
What colors/themes/diy/handmade elements did you include on your wedding day? How did COJ help?
I love neutral tones and my favorite season is fall so I tried to marry those two for the overall theme/color palette for the wedding. Blush, mauve, maroon, deep purples, greys also some greenery. My bouquet was this amazing airy and wispy creation with lovely fall neutrals of wild flowers, roses, dahlias, and anemones with a cascading nude ribbon. The bridesmaids had a smaller version also with a ribbon, I loved the look the neutral ribbons. I wanted the boutonnieres to be succulents; I thought it was such a cool way to bring the desert to the wedding and they looked so sharp against the tuxes.
One of my favorite elements was the escort card display. As my venue is not traditional, there was no clear separation between cocktails and dinner. We decided to use the escort card display to divide the two areas. Luna, at Arrangements (who is a genius) said she would create something with linen/drape and velvet ribbons. Seeing her work before, I trusted her but also had no idea what this would look like. It was STUNNING. It was DREAMY. We loved it so much we ended up moving it as the photo booth backdrop after dinner.
Tell us about the dress and how/where you found it!
I’ve loved fashion from the moment I was born and was extremely excited when it came time to look for the dress. However, I had no idea what I was looking for. I did not have a real vision in mind, but there were a couple details I had to have: lace, a deep v and something unique. I had almost finalized on this beautiful long sleeve lace number when my girlfriend and I spotted this whimsical fairy tale dress that had butterflies (never thought I would end on a dress with butterflies!). She said, “Try it on for fun”. So I did, and that was it. My dress was the Francesca Miranda Aurora dress. It’s a-line with a deep v. It has embroidered silk butterflies and Swarovski crystals sewn on the bodice. The details are one of a kind. It also has a gorgeous French lace underskirt with layers of Italian tulle on top. It was romantic, and perfect for Palm Springs. However, I customized it. I wanted the tulle removable so I could experience that princess bridal feeling and also something a little sleeker. I also opened up the tulle in the front so you got more of a glimpse of the stunning lace skirt. I wore the tulle for the ceremony and cocktails.
It was a lot of dress so I opted for no veil and minimal jewelry. I wore a simple pair of diamond studs, one of the diamonds was from my great grandmother’s engagement ring, very special. I also wore my mom’s diamond tennis bracelet, which my sister also wore on her wedding day. For the shoes, I also knew they had to be simple, but I wanted some sparkle, obviously! I went with Stuart Weitzman Nudist (in the tallest heel!), in platinum lame. The best part of those shoes, I have worn them many times post wedding.
What was your favorite part of your wedding day?
Our favorite moment was cocktails (seems crazy) but that was the first time we could let loose, say hello to our friends and family and really start enjoying the evening as a married couple. The setting was perfect, a cotton candy sunset on top of a mountain with 110 of our best friends and family (with great music and bacon wrapped dates). We loved scanning the crowd and seeing the mixing and matching of guests. Brad’s family talking to Lindsay’s friends and vice versa. Those moments are so special to us and we will always remember it.
How did you fall in love and become engaged?
Brad and I were set up by mutual friends in February of 2015. To be honest, neither of us had high expectations as set ups had not really worked for us in the past. We met at a popular bar in Santa Monica named The Bungalow with a small group. It was an instant connection. We both thought we would end up leaving early that night, however we wound up closing the bar down at 1:30am. The following weekend we spent a weekend in wine country. In August of that year, Brad was offered a job in San Francisco. Taking a big step, he asked me if I would move with him. I said yes and the rest is history.
Brad and I dated for about a year and a half prior the proposal. The proposal happened in Split, Croatia. It was the 2nd night of our 12-day trip. We stayed in the cutest boutique hotel called Villa Split; it only has 9 rooms. Brad had asked the owner to decorate our room with some flowers and add some champagne while we were out at dinner. We later walked back into the room and were greeted with flowers everywhere, champagne and a heart made out of rose petals and chocolate on the bed! I was still clueless and thought it was just a sweet gesture since we had a very nightmare travel experience getting to Croatia. Brad said “I have one more surprise”. He pulled the ring out of his suitcase, (which is another story in itself, almost getting caught with it going through security) got down on one knee and said, “Will you have my babies and marry me?” (yes in that order!).
It was the best night. I was extremely surprised, which I loved. I think that is the best way to get engaged, when you have no idea it’s coming. I couldn’t believe he brought a ring (my dream ring) all the way to Croatia. We were on cloud nine and about to embark on our first international travel experience together for another 10 days. Couldn’t have been better!
What advice do you have for future brides and grooms?
A few pieces of advice…Do not start planning the wedding right after you get engaged. If you have the luxury to have a long engagement, enjoy those first two months and just glow in your happiness. We loved those first few months just celebrating and enjoying life as an engaged couple. Next, EXAMPLES are your friends. When you are researching vendors, have them send examples, so many examples. Do not feel bad about asking for multiple examples. Full photo albums, full wedding videos, florals from previous weddings, etc. They are so helpful in nailing down your favorite. Instagram is a great place to look too! Also do not rush into decisions, if you start early you can take your time and feel 100% about your decision. Last piece, you do not need your photographer that late on the actual day. If you are working with a certain time limit, have them arrive early and leave early (no one wants professional photos past 9:30pm, trust me). Oh and one more, let it all go that weekend. Have fun, take it all in and enjoy it. Fastest weekend of my life, but also the best weekend of my life.
Photography: Birds of a Feather Photography // Wedding Planning: COJ Events // Flowers: Arrangements Floral and Party Design // Stationery: Union Street Paper // Venue: Stone Eagle Golf Club // Brides Dress: Francesca Miranda // Bridesmaid Dresses: Jenny Yoo // Videography: Satellite Pictures // Dessert: Exquisite Desserts // Hair and Makeup: Chelsea Nicole // Photobooth: Classic Photo Booth // Bridesmaid Gift: Madewell Handbag with custom embroidery // Guys Tuxes: The Black Tux // Rentals & Lighting: Arrangements Floral and Party Design // Entertainment: Dart DJ