Stop the train right now. I’ve got a really really gorgeous wedding for you today, with really really gorgeous images from photographer Braedon Flynn Photography. Anything Braedon sends me is absolute and utter perfection, so I’m feeling pretty lucky today! He’s on my short list of photographers to call when I’m booking one for my own wedding. Really. And these images are no exception–just altogether beautiful!
Lauren and Dan’s wedding, believe it or not, is a country club wedding! I know so many of you gals are desperate to see a wedding held at a country club, because they are always pretty go-to locations. Well, as it so happens, Montecito Country Club in Santa Barbara is a really gorgeous venue (who knew, a golf course, right?). To go right along with the images are details from Lauren. I loved everything she had to share, so today, you are getting double doses of information and images! I hope you can handle it!
About Lauren and Dan: I can’t quite say what made me fall in love with Dan – it truly was impossible for me to NOT fall in love with him – I tried not to! We met in our band “The New Limb” about 3 years ago, and when I had joined, the band had made an agreement that they were not allowed to date me. We tried very hard to NOT break this rule, but we eventually realized it wasn’t worth it. We had to be together. We knew we wanted to be together for the rest of our lives. I love that he is my best friend. I couldn’t imagine life without him. I love his patience, his humor, and the way he loves me so unconditionally.
Choosing the venue was definitely the least favorite part of planning the wedding for us! Having a January wedding is tricky. We knew it was most likely going to be good weather – but – who knows! It could rain! Southern California has limited indoor reception halls that hold over 200 people and don’t look like a hotel convention room. My parents have a beach home in Santa Barbara and my Dad plays golf at Montecito Country Club. He suggested the venue. We weren’t excited at the thought of holding it at a country club, but when we saw the place it blew our minds. It was beautiful! It looked nothing like a country club, but more like a Spanish mission – definitely the look we were going for. We were able to have the ceremony and reception indoors, and cocktails outside. It was fun for our guests as well since none of them live in or near Santa Barbara. It was like a huge destination wedding.
My favorite memories of the day revolve a lot around the ceremony, which I didn’t expect. I hadn’t thought through what it might feel like to walk down the aisle or give our vows, so when it was happening, it was incredible. I also thought it would be the blurriest memory of the day- but it is the most clear in my mind. I know it was a short ceremony but it felt long to me! When I think back I think of walking down the aisle with my dad, taking Dan’s hand as my dad gave me away, almost dropping my bouquet because it was SO heavy!, reading our vows to each other, seeing the groomsmen holding back tears, hearing the lead singer of my band sing “Be Thou My Vision” during our communion, Dan drinking the ENTIRE glass of wine during communion, being announced as Mrs. Perez, running down the aisle and holding each other as we exited the ceremony hall, and laughing hysterically at what had just happened. It was the most beautiful part of the day.
When I began designing the wedding, our band was on tour up the coast. I brought a huge bag of magazines and a blank notebook, and anytime I saw something I liked I ripped it out and glued it in the notebook. When we got home a few weeks later I looked through the notebook and saw what was the overall theme. It was a super fun way to come to some conclusions! So we learned that were both drawn to simplistic, classy, clean design. I’m not a big flower girl, and wanted the colors to be neutral rather than girly. I like the contrast of greens and blues, so we designed around that. Succulents have great shape and color, the white orchids added just enough softness, and the dark blue was a great color of fabric. Together they look super modern and clean. My mom and I designed and made pretty much everything, from the centerpieces to the flower petal cones. We grew the succulents at home and made the centerpieces just a few days before the wedding. I do some graphic design, so I was able to design the invitations and programs myself as well. My mom got a huge manzanita tree from downtown LA and planted it in a box surrounded by succulents- that was one of my favorite things we made! For some of the bigger projects we hired help (i.e. Printing and cutting the invitations, lighting, bouquets, etc). It had gotten a little scary about 3 weeks before the wedding when we still had lots of programs to print and the guest book to be made- but it was so enjoyable to see our hard work pay off on the day of the wedding!
My favorite thing we did for our wedding was emphasize our love of music. We didn’t stick to many norms – so people got to see who we are through the music we chose. I walked down the aisle to John Lennon’s song “Love”, which will now forever be the most magical song I ever hear. At cocktail hour we had 10 of our favorite albums on display with a record player for people to come up and choose a song to play. During reception while the food courses were being served we had several different friends perform solo of whatever they wanted. They each had everyone up and dancing before dinner had even been served! It was incredible! We had also chosen all the DJ music and had our friend Martin Sanchez emcee- so everything felt very much like family. Our friends and family never stopped dancing. Our “wedding favor” was a mix CD of songs that remind me and Dan of when we started to fall in love. Choosing the music and putting it all together was definitely the most time consuming, and most difficult to make decisions on, but we had to do it! I can’t imagine if we hadn’t done it.
Resources: Venue: Montecito Country Club, Photography: Braedon Photography, Wedding dress: Jim Hjelm from Mon Amie (Costa Mesa), Hair: Gina Piccinono, Make-up: Gianna Luisi, Shoes: heels: Nina, Boots: Steve Madden, Bridesmaid dresses: Suzy Chin from Macy’s online, Hairpieces: my great-grandmothers necklace converted into a headband by Destiny Barreda. Bracelet and earrings also by Destiny Barreda, Groom Suit: Hollywood Suit Outlet but more importantly, tailored by Benny at Spatola Tailoring (Costa Mesa), Groomsmens suits: Zara, Cinematography: AJ Abajian, Event Design: my mother and I, Event Planner: my mother and I, Day-Of coordinator: Linda Ambrose, Floral design: bouquets and boutineres by Gazebo Plants and Gardens, Invitations/paper goods: (printing and cutting) The Divine Invitation, Cake: Montecito confections, Music: Martin Sanchez, Lighting: Ambient Designs