Old St. Hilary’s is a little church on a hillside, overlooking the San Francisco Bay, and one of the most charming places I can imagine for a wedding. Especially on a sunny day, like the Friday in August when Marnie and Brian wed. Says the bride:

We wanted something that was more romantic than anything else – something elegant but neither fancy nor overly rustic. Something intimate and unique. We wanted to find a small chapel for the ceremony and Old St. Hilary’s was perfect, and when I first saw pictures of the Outdoor Art Club I fell in love with it. We love that both buildings are on the National Register of Historic Places, and after that everything came together.

We chose music that we loved and that seemed fitting for the occasion including Fred Hersch’s interpretation of Walt Whitman’s Leaves of Grass, and “Good Day, Sunshine” by the Beatles for walking back down the aisle. We wanted music that provided a sense of joy and of the sacred and yet was not entirely serious.

We snuck down the road before the reception to take some photos with the best man and maid of honor. The trees are giant and covered with moss and it’s beautiful – we couldn’t resist clambering around a bit in the forest and the stream, a nice way to escape for a while.

After the ceremony, guests headed to the Outdoor Art Club in Mill Valley for dinner and dancing.

We have two adorable shelter mutts who couldn’t be there, so we included them by making a donation to Just a Dog Pitbull Rescue in lieu of wedding favors, and had little portraits of them on our invitations and cake.

Marnie’s advice for other brides?  You may need help where you don’t think you will, like remembering to do the basics (sleep! eat dinner the night before!). It’s so easy to get caught up in all the excitement and the lovely details, but no dress or make up artist or stylist can make you look nearly as good if you haven’t had a good 7-8 hours of sleep. You’ll need it! Also, if you’re keeping your dress long, make sure you have a free hand to life it as you walk down the aisle or you might trip.

Photography: Gia Canali / Ceremony venue: Old St. Hilary’s in Tiburon, California / Reception venue: Outdoor Art Club in Mill Valley, California / Bride’s dress: Rosa Clara / Bridesmaid dresses: Dessy / Groom’s suit: Ermenegildo Zegna / Floral design: La Fleuriste / Catering / cakes: Elaine Bell Catering / Branching Out Cakes
16 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings, Some Favorites
  1. Tracy Thunderbolt

    Wow. I thought the groom was lookin’ fly in that suit, but then I saw the back of the dress. What a snappily-dressed, happy-looking couple, and what a lovely wedding!

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  2. Danielle | Studio Fleurette

    Beautiful! Love that pop of orange…so beautiful among all the whites and greens.

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  3. CN

    Yay! We’re getting married at the Outdoor Art Club! And they have rescue pitts? This couple has great taste!

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  4. Kelli Taylor/Daniel Taylor Photography

    Wow. Wow. Wow. Gorgeous, dreamy color. These photos are going to be gorgeous and timeless 5, 10, and 50 years from now. And that cake is amazing.

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  5. adam

    the photo of them kissing in the church is incredible! this spread is perfect…

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  6. Kate Holt

    i love gia’s images….sigh

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  7. Kirby {Colors of Honey}

    Beautiful! I love the brides words on finding the right location. This church reminds me of a church in Minnesota called St. Catherine’s. it’s on a country road, on a hill and overlooks a small lake. every time we drive by it I imagine a wedding taking place there. cheers! xo

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  8. Katie | Invitations by Ajalon

    I love the b&w photos! So sweet.

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  9. jenn {bow tie & bustle}

    I love her dress! So beautiful!

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  10. Lissa (The Wedding Bistro at Bellenza)

    Love the care the couple took in choosing their wedding & reception venues…and the fabulous results just prove them right!

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  11. Anna Auva

    Hey I love the bridal gown.The blushing brides looks absolutely gorgeous in it.I love the wedding cake too, fabulous. Plus the two little boys look so handsome in their cute little tuxes.This is a fabulous wedding that I would love to go to.

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  12. Kourtney

    Love the images from Gia! She is truly amazing!!

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  13. Sarah

    Where were the photos taken in the Redwoods? We’re getting married at the OAC in a few months and would love to do similar photos!

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    • Marnie

      The redwood photos were taken about another mile down the road(West Blithedale) past the OAC. There are huge trees and it’s beautiful down there.

      I hope you love your OAC wedding as much as we did! :0)

  14. Gloria Atherstone

    Old St, Hillary is a classic Marin Setting- and we love the Outdoor Art Club- gorgeous!!

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  15. ebridalgowns

    Love the images from Gia! She is truly amazing!!

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