Sleek. Modern. A breath of fresh air. This is how we feel about Megan and Max’s striking wedding day—which is befitting because that’s exactly what the couple envisioned of their celebration. Filled with architectural influence (notice the awesome similarity between the venue and the gown?) and tailored musical touches, the couple created a strikingly beautiful event celebrating their love and and Gina & Ryan Photography was on had to capture it all.
What made the wedding special and unique?
Megan: I had a lot of people tell me that one of the things that was really great about our wedding was that, after our personalized vows, we seemed like a different couple than before we said them. This makes me so happy because Max and I did so much talking and had so many heart-to-hearts about marriage and what it means. We really tried to use our vows to communicate our very personal, well-formulated ideas of what it means to be a family to each other and to our families and loved ones. Our wedding ceremony was officiated by my two “guncles” who have known me since birth, so it was extra special to have them usher us into our next chapter and to know that they so actively supported our union.
Max: I just enjoyed that our wedding was exactly what WE wanted it to be. Not driven by convention or wedding blogs, but by our desire to have our wedding be a reflection of ourselves and our families. Megan and I were committed to having it be a day about us and our relationship, not what everyone else wanted it to be.
Tell us about the gown and where/how you found it!
Megan: When I was a little girl, I had torn out a picture from a magazine of what I wanted my wedding dress to look like. When it came time to actually pick out my wedding gown, my mom and I tore the house apart looking for it, but came up empty handed. However, we both remembered that the dress had a very architectural look to it; possible an asymmetric train. As I started searching for gowns, I basically just Googled “architectural modern wedding dress” or something like that, and I found this one dress by Peter Langner out of Rome. It was really the only one from the second I laid eyes on it. The only place I could try it on in the U.S. was at Kleinfeld’s in New York, so I made the appointment and went with my best friend, Laura, and my mom. I tried on the one dress and everyone instantly exclaimed, “Yes! This is the one. Stop here.” So I did. The modern venue and other sleek touches all followed the dresses suit.
What were some touches added to make it personal?
Megan: We both knew even before we became engaged that Megan wanted the well-known string quartet, The Section Quartet, to play at the wedding. They played me down the aisle to The Beatles’ “Here Comes The Sun”, played The Cars’ “Just What I Needed” as the recessional, and also created a unique arrangement for us a gift of The Decemberists’ “Los Angeles, I’m Yours”. We also had several macaron trees created for us from Lette in Beverly Hills because Max can’t get enough!
Max: There were a lot of personal touches. From The Section Quartet, to the Magnums & Jerobams of wine that I picked out for the day. We had all of our guests sign the bottles with paint pens so we could keep them.
What was the most memorable part of the day?
Megan: My brother’s toast. He had a big job to do, but he did an incredible job. His speech was both emotional and hilarious. My brother’s name is also Max, and my favorite line, that I still repeat to myself often is, “When Megan first told me she was dating this cool record producer named, Max, I thought to myself ‘Wow! What a cool name!”
Max: There were many standout moments but the one that sums it all up for me was when the song “Africa” by Toto came on. The entire room erupted. Who knew that our friends and family loved Toto as much as I do…
Tell us how you met and became engaged.
Max and Megan met while Megan was attending college at USC studying Music Business. Megan’s former high school sweetheart, Dan (now engaged to her best friend, Laura), was also at USC and shared, with a few roommates, a very sweet party house where Megan and her friends were often invited. Max, freshly back in Los Angeles after attending Berkley College Of Music in Boston, was good friends with Dan and also spent a great deal of time at the party house. The first time Megan walked into the house in about October 2005, she was a new face to many in Max’s scene. By next Halloween, Max and Megan showed up at the party house in a couples costume and the long romance had begun in earnest. After 8 years of dating seriously and 5 years of living together all over Los Angeles, Max and Megan planned an incredible vacation to France. Friends told Megan that Max was bound to propose, but Megan did not believe them.
The day they were set to arrive in Laguiole, France at the hotel and restaurant, MichelBras, there was palpable excitement in Max’s voice. Dressed in finest for dinner at this 3 Star Michelin restaurant in pastoral France on the top of a mountain, Max and Megan went to the restaurant lounge for champagne and amuse bouche. First was an Arpege-like egg dish with a simple bantam egg shell filled with the yolk accompanied by a long thin bread ‘soldier’ for dipping into the yolk, topped with caviar. Max, trying his best to look casual, was perusing the wine list and tapping his foot wildly. Max kicked his egg to the floor! After a replacement egg dish and a little more champagne, Max got down on one knee and said something wonderful about marriage and family and the couple’s last 8 years together as partners in life (neither can remember, as it was all a blur obscured by tears and Megan cursing like a sailor out of happiness). Megan obviously managed to communicate her assent to Max’s proposal, and he slipped an heirloom engagement ring on her finger and simultaneously Instagramed the photo!
Megan panicked because they had not told any of their family members yet and she didn’t want them to find out on social media. They both frantically made several phone calls to their nearest and dearest, and then headed into the dining room to one of the best meals of either’s life and some very special wines picked out by Max to commemorate the engagement. They often talk of the time they got engaged and Max always says he chose Michel Bras so that he could shout his happiness about their engagement from the mountain tops.
Vendors: Photography: Gina & Ryan Photography // Event Planner: Events By CJE // Location: Ace Hotel LA // Reception Venue: Walt Disney Concert Hall // Caterer: Patina Restaurant Group // Cake Designer: charm city cakes west // Hair Stylist: Daniel Owen // Bakery: Lette Macarons // Floral Designer: The Hidden Garden // Musicians: The Section Quartet // Makeup Artist: Valerie Vonprisk Makeup