Pippin Hill is such a lovely venue, it’s no wonder Meredith and William chose it to celebrate their wedding day. Details we love? The bride wore her grandmother’s veil, the groom and groomsmen wore monogrammed cummerbunds, and bridesmaids chose their own dresses in shades of nude. If you’re planning an elegant, traditional wedding, we know you’ll love this!

SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS TRADITIONAL WEDDING BY ELISA BRICKER.

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Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  My something old was my maternal grandmother’s veil. She went to Belgium to buy it when she was getting married. She wore it in her wedding and then my mom wore it in hers. My something blue was a blue ribbon pinned inside my dress that my paternal grandmother pinned in since she wasn’t able to travel to the wedding. My paternal grandmother gave me the knife she used at her wedding to cut the cake so William and I were able to use that same knife to cut our cake.

Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about?  Ahh the welcome bags. We’d been told by so many people not to worry about welcome bags that they are so much more of a hassle than its worth. But we were having a destination wedding, and I felt like if people were making the effort to travel to Charlottesville, I should make the effort to welcome them. My compromise was that I wasn’t going to make it fancy but really reflective of William and me so I included all of our favorite things, including blue Powerade and Sour Patch Kids. It was definitely a lot of work but I’m glad I did it.

Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  Start with a budget! It’s so much easier to make decisions when you can look at it from a budget perspective. You can really focus on what’s important to you and make tweaks accordingly. Out of respect for my parents, I’m going to keep the specific breakdown private but I will say that things add up fast!

 

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What was the best advice you received as a bride?  A friends’ mom told me on the Thursday before our wedding to “take mental snapshots over the weekend. Take a step back, look around, soak it in and take a mental snapshot.” I took that to heart and can really remember each event of the wedding and how I was feeling. I tell all my friends who get married to do the same! // On the advice of our wedding planner, I set a date (mine was Wednesday) after which, I told everyone that if something was going wrong not to tell me about it. There were so many unknowns the week of our wedding – the snow storm was preventing guests from getting in, venues didn’t know whether they would have power, etc. But by that point, I was just ready to get married and couldn’t worry about things I couldn’t control. By Wednesday, I was able to relax and just enjoy the weekend and trust that my support system was working behind the scenes to make sure everything ran smoothly!

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Just remember, at the end of the day, you’re going to be married and that is all that matters! Also, our wedding planner was 110% worth every single penny. I have been in a lot of weddings and looking back at ours, I am so beyond thankful that I wasn’t concerned over one logistical detail. So if you’re debating hiring one, I say do it!

If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  I would have had the videographer there while I was getting ready and during the reception instead of just at the rehearsal dinner and ceremony.

 

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The Ceremony

“While Charlottesville is a beautiful location for an outdoor ceremony, it was really important to us to be married in a church. St. Paul’s Memorial Church was a no-brainer – the church is elegant yet simple. It is also right on the corner (near UVA grounds) which was easily accessible to our guests and gave them a chance to see where we met.”

 

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Your ceremony in three words.  Simple, Christ-centered, and holy.

How did you go about planning your ceremony?  Our incredible wedding planner, Easton Events, gave us a guideline of ceremonies they had which helped us plan the ceremony.

Who officiated your ceremony?  Stan Buckley was the pastor of Williams’ hometown church, First Baptist Jackson, and he officiated.

 

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What was your ceremony music?  This was actually kind of stressful because we chose this last. I just assumed I would know instantly what I wanted but there are so many options and didn’t know how to choose. I asked my grandmother who is involved with music at her church in Baton Rouge for her advice and looked at what friends had used in their ceremonies.

What were your ceremony readings?  Ephesians 4: 1-6

What were your vows like?  Our vows were the traditional vows – that was important to us because we’d talked about what each of those vows meant.

SEE MEREDITH AND WILLIAM’S FULL ORDER OF CEREMONY HERE.

 

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What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  Our ceremony was really simple and ended up lasting only 12 minutes (that was probably our guests favorite thing about the ceremony, ha!), but what I loved most about it was that it was really about the fact that our marriage isn’t just about William and me, but about our covenant with God and that there are three, not two, in this union.

 

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The Reception

“Pippin Hill was exactly what we wanted our reception to be. It’s rustic, elegant, and sits on a breathtaking landscape. I knew just from seeing the pictures online, and as we pulled up for the first site visit I told the planner, ‘I don’t even need to go inside…this is it!'”

 

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How would you describe your reception?  Elegant, rustic, and fun.

What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  Blogs! I wasn’t one of those girls who had known what they wanted for the wedding their entire life so I had to hit the blog and Pinterest scene hard. I just pulled images that I liked and relied on our amazing planner and her team to make that vision come to life! I trusted them and it was exactly what we wanted.

What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  Honestly, my favorite part was after William and I took pictures while our guests had cocktails. Our planner arranged for us to go to the loft for 15 minutes to eat dinner, just the two of us, before we joined the reception party. I start to tear up thinking about those 15 minutes because it was such a joyful time.

 

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What was your wedding menu?  Oh gosh there were so many things but the main ones I remember were the sliders – everyone was raving about the sliders!

What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  Carrot cake was the main cake but we also had an almond poppyseed cake and a chocolate on chocolate groom’s cake.

Special songs: 
First dance: This Magic Moment from the Sandlot movie
Father/daughter dance: Brown Eyed Girl

 

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Elisa Bricker, Easton Events | Snippet & Ink Elisa Bricker, Easton Events | Snippet & Ink

 

Is there anything else that helps tell the story of your wedding?  A friend told me to make the reception really “us”, that when you look back on weddings that they all kind of blur together unless there’s something really unique to the couple. That made a lot of sense to me so we decided to have a foosball table during cocktail hour because William LOVES foosball and we also used the Wahooptie which is a big green ridiculous party bus from the ceremony to the reception. They were just little things but ones that made the wedding more reflective of our personalities. // The week of our wedding there was a huge snow storm – Pippin Hill didn’t even have power on the Friday before the wedding. By the grace of God, Saturday afternoon was 60 degrees and sunny. All of our guests were able to have cocktail hour outside and enjoy the beautiful setting. // Our band, Right On Band, really set the tone for the evening – they came out in platform glittered boots and feather boas – it was just a really fun energy! // A favorite moment would be that during our first dance, William’s niece, CeCe, who was 2 at the time, came and grabbed my hand and swayed back and forth with us – it’s such a special memory!

 

Elisa Bricker, Easton Events | Snippet & Ink Elisa Bricker, Easton Events | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Elisa Bricker / Event Planning & Design: Easton Events / Venue, Catering: Pippin Hill Farm in Charlottesville, Virginia / Officiant: Stan Buckley / Dress: The Grove Dress by Lela Rose / Shoes: Valentino (satin jeweled Bow D’Orsay platform pumps) / Cumberbund: Custom monogramed from Smathers and Branson / Stationery: Crane & Co / Calligraphy: GDE Calligraphy / Floral Design, Rentals: Beehive Events / Hair: Moxie Bridal / Makeup: Lora Kelley  / Ceremony Music: Madison Trio / Reception Music: Right On Band / Cake: Favorite Cakes
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  • Pippin Hill Wedding by Elisa Bricker

    11 June 2015
  • 4 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    Moriah and Chris wanted their wedding to feel personal and intimate, and their beautifully rustic Napa venue set the stage for just such a celebration. From their Dog of Honor to the wedding arch built by the bride’s father, from the romantic swing to the charming table decor, this DIY wedding was truly a labor of love.

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS RUSTIC NAPA WEDDING BY CHRISTINA McNEILL.

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    The Ceremony

    “When we first thought about the kind of wedding we wanted, we imagined a small, intimate gathering to avoid making a spectacle of the most profound day of our lives, but Chris has an enormous family, and we didn’t want to exclude any of the people we cherish. So we had to change gears. We were thrilled when a close family friend offered their beautiful property in my hometown of Napa for consideration. The rustic setting among the vineyards in the hills made it possible to have a casual, down-home, ‘backyard’ feel for our wedding – avoiding the pressures of a large, formal event – while still giving our celebration the magical ambience it deserved. The ceremony itself was in a clearing in the vineyard on a hill that seemed to have existed for the sole purpose that we could devote our future to each other in that very spot.”

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  Intimate, Natural, Genuine.

    How did you go about planning your ceremony?  Figuring out how to best demonstrate the love we feel for each other in just 20-30 minutes was quite a challenge! We started with the thought that the entire purpose of a wedding ceremony is to make permanent the bond we feel for one another, so it must personify us. It was also important that we include all the amazing people we invited to witness our wedding. We decided to do a Ring Blessing: our wedding bands were passed on a dish to every guest while four of our dearest friends read passages and song lyrics we had selected. The readings varied from sentimental to fun and silly, keeping our guests engaged and entertained. The ring passing tied us all together, and allowed each guest the chance to symbolically send us their well-wishes before we placed the bands on each others’ fingers.

    Who officiated your ceremony?  Neither of us is religious, but we both respect that this commitment is a deeply spiritual, transcendent bond. We wanted someone we know to do the honors, but also someone who respects and personifies the understanding of the spiritual elements of marriage, and who could be playful with the tone. We arrived at a close family friend of Chris’s family, who did such a wonderful job. It was perfect!

     

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    What was your ceremony music?  I had my heart set on a particular song for the processional that I had long ago deemed “our song”. Duet, by Rachael Yamagata and Ray Lamontagne, has lyrics that tell our love story, one in which we dated for a long time, went our separate ways, and then found our way back home to each other. The music to this song was absolutely perfect for the processional, and exactly what I wanted to hear as I walked down the aisle toward the man of my dreams.

    What were your ceremony readings?
    Touched By An Angel – Maya Angelou
    Wedding Song – Bob Dylan
    When I Am With You – Rumi
    I Like You (Abridged) – Sandol Stoddard Warburg

    What were your vows like?  The vows became the secret nightmare of the wedding. We, of course, wanted to compose our own so everything would feel personal. We assumed this would be easy and natural. But with the million-and-one details of the wedding planning and execution, it kept getting pushed back. We ended up scrambling to compose our vows together the day before the wedding which resulted in tears (on my part) and exasperation. Finally we agreed we just needed to divide and conquer. Somehow, when we stepped apart, and started jotting down our sentiments, they actually did pour out quite naturally. Despite the panic and last-minute effort, our vows ended up being our guests’ favorite part of the ceremony and we received countless complements. It must have been the process of cutting away all pretense and just dumping out our true feelings that made them so special.

     

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    What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  It’s hard to compete with the fact that our furry love-bug best friend, Papago, served as our Dog of Honor and was escorted down the aisle by my aunt. Aside from that, I would have to say that what stands out most about our ceremony was that we felt so present and connected, not only to each other, but also to our families and our guests. I will always remember the looks of joy, the laughter, and tears of happiness on everyone’s faces throughout the readings and our vows. It was so powerful to feel overwhelmed by their support.

    Is there anything else that you’d like to share about your wedding ceremony?  We had a rough outline of the ceremony events. Our wedding planner walked us through a quick, somewhat scattered rehearsal the day before, and panic set in that maybe we should have better formalized the details and rehearsed more, but it was too late. Our planner kept assuring us that everything would fall into place, and she was right! I’m so glad we didn’t put undue stress into trying to control every detail. Our relaxed approach did not compromise the ceremony, and it flowed perfectly. It was beyond my dreams. Once it was done, we were elated with how it had gone. The ceremony was so truly a celebration of our love.

     

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    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The best advice I received was to focus on staying present and to try to stay near my man throughout the events. It’s easy to get separated, catching up with different people, but then you miss out on enjoying it all together.

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  We were so glad we went on our honeymoon right after our wedding weekend. The wedding flew by too quickly. It was important to continue the celebration but to step down out of planning and entertaining others. We recommend other couples do the same.

     

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    Did you include any special traditions in your wedding?  My mom sewed beautiful matching robes for all of the bridesmaids to wear as we prepared. My mother-in-law gave me Chris’s baby Hanky-Bonnet as something old (it’s a baby-bonnet made from a handkerchief that he wore home from the hospital after he was born). I carried it with me throughout the night. My mom gave me some hand-carved silver hairclips that had been a wedding gift to her, which I wore in my hair. I also borrowed my grandmother’s wedding slip to wear under my wedding dress. I wore TOMS wedges out of necessity with the uneven terrain, and they have baby blue on the logo.

     

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    Did you include any DIY projects?  We actually went a little overboard with DIY projects. One of my favorites was the swing my dad constructed to hang under the big oak tree draped with fabric near the vineyard, which we encouraged our guests to use as a photo backdrop. My dad also made the white birch arch under which we said our vows…my mom made the table runners and hundreds of beautiful throw pillows that filled the hay-bale seating area for the cocktail hour and post-dinner gathering, to name just a few things…our friend is a talented graphic designer who did our stationery exactly to our specifications, as well as the necessary fan-programs for the ceremony…my sister found antique lampshade frames at the Alameda Flea market that we wrapped with twinkle lights to tart up the barn… our wedding planner made moss covered table numbers…our family friends restored vintage neon signs of our initials and built a display for the dance floor in the barn…and on and on and on. Everything came together so beautifully. It truly felt like our community of people helped create our wedding, instead of some rental place showing up with a cookie-cutter wedding package.”

     

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    The Reception

    “Our reception was both relaxed and exciting. Afterward, we heard from so many guests that everything flowed so well and people really enjoyed the ease and beauty of the setting. Dancing in the barn overlooking the lights in the valley below was epic, and the rustic hay-bale seating with throw pillows and blankets around fire pits was comfortable and inviting.”

     

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    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  Pretty much every wedding that we had ever been to that bucked tradition and stuck true to the couple told us that we wanted to create a celebration where people felt welcome, comfortable, and free to enjoy every minute of the event. We just kept thinking, “What kind of party would WE want to go to on a vineyard in the hills of Napa?” That made it easy.

     

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    What was your wedding menu?  I could go on forever about the excellent food. We are so glad we splurged on our favorite caterer. People expect great food in the Napa Valley and Alex’s Catering delivered.

    Did you have a signature cocktail? We most certainly did have a signature cocktail but not enough time to give it a clever name. Passion fruit puree, vodka, lime juice, St. Germaine, simple syrup and soda water. We invented it ourselves. It was a hit!

     

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    Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  We wanted it all, on a limited budget. We saved money by taking a DIY approach, but that has its own cost in terms of time and stress, and as we neared the wedding day we just started hacking away projects from our agenda out of sheer necessity. Looking back, I can’t even remember what they were. What matters most is your guests and your interactions with everyone. Put just enough money into your decor to feel like it portrays a sense of your aesthetic, and put more money into your guests’ experience (like food and music), and what will allow you to remember the day afterward (like photography and videography). People remember how much fun they had, not the linens and candles.

     

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    Long tables were decorated with DIY table runners, bud vases filled with simple white flowers, moss covered table numbers, and a miniature Seckel pear at each place.

     

     

    If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently? I wish we’d spent less time during cocktail hour taking photos. Even though we set aside time pre-ceremony for a chunk of photos, we ended up doing a bunch afterward to capture everything. I would have added more time pre-ceremony for the photos and spent more time at our cocktail hour. No matter how you plan, things just fly by far too quickly.

     

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    Special music:
    First Dance – “That’s How Strong My Love Is” by Otis Redding
    Father/Daughter – “My Little Girl” by Tim McGraw
    Mother/Son – “In My Life” by The Beatles
    First Group Dance – “Happy” by Pharrell

     

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    What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  Neither of us really likes cake, so a wedding cake was a tradition we really didn’t care about. Instead, we opted to do a champagne tower to kick-off the reception, and later in the evening offered a selection of favorite desserts. We still had our fab photo-op doing something celebratory (and super fun) together, but didn’t feel like we were just succumbing to wedding traditions that felt empty to us.

     

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    What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  The champagne tower at dinner followed by toasts that blew our minds are among our best memories of the reception. My father made everyone feel so welcome and was truly flattering and loving. Chris’s brother gave a hilarious speech that made everyone realize he should be a stand-up comedian or writer, and my sister brought everyone to tears.

     

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    Please tell us about any other special details or moments from your reception.  The dances were surprisingly delightful. It was my one chance to get my men to dance lessons and I took full advantage. Chris was such a good sport, trudging his way to a dance studio after excruciatingly long work days in Manhattan. And my dad abhors dancing, but he wanted to do this thing to make his little girl happy. He tolerated dance lessons despite his aversion. In the end, we all had a great time practicing, and it was a relief to have something fun to show our guests instead of just teetering back and forth to a song like we were in high school. People hooted and cheered, and some even cried during the dances. It was a blast!

     

    Photography: Christina McNeill / Event Planning & Design: B Events / Venue: One Lane Bridge Vineyard, a Private Estate in Napa, California / Dress: Blush by Hayley Paige / Shoes: Toms / Jewelry: Daisy Chain by Eriness / Bridesmaid Dresses: Joanna August / Floral Design: Melody Raye Flowers & Design / Suit, Shirt: Brooklyn Tailors / Shoes: Church’s / Watch: Shinola / Stationery: Plaid Design / Hair, Makeup: The Beauty Team / Catering, Dessert: Alex’s Catering / Videography: Well Spun Weddings / Rentals: Wine Country Party and Events / Ceremony Music: Kevin Ayers, Jules Larson and Peter Davies / Reception Music:Kevin Ayers, DJ Peter Davies

    Christina McNeill is a Snippet & Ink Select vendor. 
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  • Rustic Romantic Napa Wedding from Christina McNeill

    10 June 2015
  • 0 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    We love this lovely Chicago wedding for its Art Deco venue (and Art Deco inspired invitations); elegant palette of green, white, and gray; and we especially love the late-night snack: Chicago style hot dogs! Read on for all the details from Katie and Brandon’s celebration.

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS CHICAGO WEDDING BY JULIA FRANZOSA.

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    The Ceremony

    “Brandon and I joined St. Clement Catholic Church as a couple when moved into the neighborhood. We fell in love with the church itself and the sense of community.”

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  Our ceremony was a very traditional full Catholic mass, which was very important to Brandon and I as well as our parents.

    How did you go about planning your ceremony?  We planned our ceremony with the help of Father Ken Simpson who presided over our wedding mass.

    What was your ceremony music?  Our music selections for the ceremony included traditional Irish and Latin wedding hymns.

     

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    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  During the ceremony I wore a wedding band my father gave to my mother on their wedding day. I also carried a piece of my mother-in-law’s wedding dress fabric wrapped around the stems of my bouquet.

     

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    The Reception

    “We chose Cafe Brauer for our reception venue because Brandon proposed to me a year and half before in Cafe Brauer’s great hall. We knew that there was nowhere else in the city other than Brauer that we would want to celebrate our marriage!”

     

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    How would you describe your reception?  Personalized, understated and inviting.

    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  Brauer’s beautiful architectural details. The building itself inspired everything down to the pattern on our invitations Sarah Drake designed.

     

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    The unique venue space was filled with white flowers and greenery, as well as dark gray linens and drapes.

     

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    The bride’s and groom’s chairs were adorned with simple olive leaf swags.

     

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    What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  It is very hard the choose, the whole evening was a beautiful blur of amazing moments. Our first dance, that took place steps away from where Brandon proposed definitely sticks out in my mind months later as one of the best of the night! My dance with my father was another favorite moment of the night. He is not big on dancing but had secretly been taking lessons all summer leading up to our wedding and surprised me a week or two before the wedding day. We danced to “The Way You Look Tonight” by Frank Sinatra.

     

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    What was your wedding menu?  Our menu, put together by Entertaining Company, represented Brandon and I’s love for food and for Wisconsin and Michigan where our families are from. Entertaining Company sourced as many ingredients as possible from our home states and the end result was fantastic food that our guests raved about!

    Did you have a signature cocktail?  We highlighted our signature bride and groom drinks at our cocktail hour with large chalkboard displays incorporating Brandon and I’s silhouettes. Brandon chose a local Michigan beer, while I chose a light champagne and pear cocktail. The champagne cocktail was a second choice when we were unable to source my favorite Wisconsin beer in Chicago. We were tempted to smuggle it across state lines!

     

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    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  To take moments throughout the planning process to stop and enjoy with your husband to be! Also to steal away with him at the reception. We found a quiet moment on the north loggia overlooking the park and the skyline and were able to look back in on our guests enjoying themselves. The day and night goes so quickly and it’s nice to steal a minute away with your new spouse!

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Enjoy the process. The fun moments and the stressful moments. It goes by quickly!

    If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  Nothing! The day and night were perfect even when things didn’t go exactly as we had planned.

     

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    Photography: Julia Franzosa / Venue: Cafe Brauer in Chicago, Illinois / Event Planning & Design: Estera Events / Officiant: Father Ken Simpson / Dress: Monique Lhuillier / Shoes, Clutch: Jimmy Choo / Veil: Ultimate Bride /  Suit: J. Crew / Tie, Shirt: Nordstrom / Shoes: Cole Haan / Stationery: Sarah Drake Design / Floral Design: HMR Designs / Hair, Makeup: Nora Hess/ Rentals: Nimblewell, Private Label Linens / Ceremony Music: St. Clement Choir, Thomas Yang String Quartet / Reception Music: Toast & Jam / Catering, Desserts: Entertaining Company / Cake: Elysia Root Cakes

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  • Chicago Wedding from Estera Events and Julia Franzosa

    8 June 2015
  • 1 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings

    Weddings at San Ysidro Ranch are always lovely, but this one seems exceptionally so, with the bride’s custom dress (decorated with pearls from her mother’s own wedding dress!), the couple’s two pups, and their champagne tower. Gorgeous! And you’ll never believe it, but Allison and Jesse planned their intimate Santa Barbara wedding in just 12 weeks! With 18 guests, it was an intimate family celebration that is sure to inspire you.

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS ROMANTIC SAN YSIDRO WEDDING FROM THE GREAT ROMANCE.

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    “Jesse got down on one knee and asked me to marry him on Allison Beach in Miami, Florida, while we watched a plane fly overhead with a banner that said Will You Marry Me Allison – Jesse. At our wedding, we held a piece of that same banner in our wedding portraits – a four-foot-tall, red heart.”

     

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    “My wedding dress was a custom design, created by La Petite Fleur Bridal and decorated with hundreds of pearls from my mother’s wedding dress. Our wedding bands were also fashioned from family heirlooms – the diamonds in my band were my mother’s and the gold for Jesse’s band was from a family ring.”

     

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    “We incorporated the traditional rhyme in our wedding day – Something Old: the pearls from my mother’s wedding gown sewn into my dress; Something New: my beautiful, Swarovski crystal Jennifer Behr headpiece; Something Borrowed: veil, borrowed from a friend after I was a bridesmaid in her wedding; Something Blue: our custom, wedding monogram embroidered into my dress in light blue.”

     

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    “We worked with designer Emily McCarthy to create a custom A and J wedding monogram that was featured in all of the wedding details, from the menus, place cards and welcome letter, embroidery on the table runner, to Jesse’s inner jacket pocket.”

     

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    The Ceremony

    “In 2011, Jesse and I packed up and moved from Florida to the San Francisco Bay Area in California. Full disclosure – we had never been to the city where we were moving and we didn’t know a single person! Needless to say it was an adventure. We have been exploring the West Coast and adventuring ever since, making a life for ourselves in California. We have traveled to many beautiful places, but the Santa Barbara area stole our hearts and we knew immediately that it would be the perfect place to celebrate our marriage. We chose the intimate and picturesque San Ysidro Ranch in Montecito, California for our ceremony and reception.”

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  Intimate, Romantic, Bright

    Who officiated your ceremony?  Our families have attended the same church in Florida for many years and our pastor, Dr. Thomas Crawford, made the trip out to California to officiate our ceremony. It was very special to have him there for such a serious moment in our life, when he has witnessed so many pivotal points over the years.

     

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    Did you include any traditions in your ceremony?  Jesse and I exchanged traditional vows standing on a Moroccan wedding blanket that is now prominent feature in our home. Each ceremony seat was adorned with a monogram handkerchief, personal to each guest, for catching happy tears.

    What was your ceremony music?
    Family processional: Canon in D
    Bridal processional: Bridal March
    Recessional: Water Music by G.F. Handel

     

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    “Planning a destination wedding can be challenging, so we enlisted the help of Samantha Scott Events to help find the right local vendors to bring our vision to life. We wanted an intimate, romantic affair in a setting that would be comfortable for our family and our two dogs, Bo and Romeo – who roamed free and relaxed the entire evening, gathering lots of affection from staff and other guests.”

     

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    “Jesse and I have known each other since childhood. He is my older brother’s friend and the dark, handsome, older guy – my adolescent crush. Fast forward to 2010, we reconnected while I was in Florida visiting family over the holidays. Thinking back, I can’t even pinpoint our first date, since I feel like our first date has been a continuum! This may sound silly, but I feel that my love for Jesse has been present ever since that first crush and it has only grown over time.”

     

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    The Reception

    “I’d describe our reception as decadent, happy and memorable!”

     

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    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  Blush and white florals, old Hollywood glamour, two-letter monograms, Pinterest, John and Jacqueline Kennedy and their September 1953 honeymoon to San Ysidro Ranch.

     

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    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Since this was an intimate family-only affair, I was able to conceptualize and plan the entire wedding in just 12 weeks! The wedding date was very important to us, so we chose 1.5.15 – a Monday. I would encourage other brides to consider having a weekday wedding – because of our date, we were able to hire our first-choice vendors (even 12 weeks out) and we had the venue virtually to ourselves.

     

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    Please tell us about any special details from your reception.  We collected vintage brass candlesticks for the dining table and cut the cake with the same knife that my grandparents used on their 50th wedding anniversary. The entire evening was filled with so much love.

     

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    Menu:  Hors d’oeuvres: Dungeness Crab Cake with Cajun Rémoulade / Potato, Gorgonzola & Applewood Bacon Croquette / California and Imported Artisan Cheese Selection // First Course: Bacon Wrapped Tiger Prawn Soft Polenta, Pea Shoots and Ranch Meyer Lemon // Second Course: San Ysidro Ranch’s Famous Tortilla Soup with
    Avocado, Organic Grilled Chicken, Cheddar Cheese with Tortilla Crisps // Entrée: Pan Seared Prime Filet of Beef with Gruyere Potato Gratin and Haricot Vert
    / Pan Seared Sea Bass with Mascarpone and Organic Spinach Risotto, Truffle Sauce

    What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  A three-tier cake from Susie Cakes made from Red Velvet, Vanilla and Celebration flavors.

    Did you have a signature cocktail?  Yes, we had two! Her Favorite: Moscow Mule and His Favorite: Old Fashioned.

     

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    What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  Every person at the table gave a toast and each one was touching and unique! For example, my two brothers toasted us with Patrón shots and limes. Those moments during the toasts, where we laughed and we cried, were definitely our most favorite part of the evening. A close second, however, was the champagne tower! To kick off the reception, Jesse and I poured champagne over a tower of coupes and everyone drank in celebration.

     

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    Is there anything else you’d like to share?  Looking back, it was the most perfect day and I am so grateful to all those who made my dream a reality. I also feel fortunate to have the opportunity to share our story, and inspire others planning an intimate wedding day – it really was magical.

     

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    Photography: The Great Romance  / Event Planning & Design: Samantha Scott Events / Venue, Catering: San Ysidro Ranch in Montecito, California / Officiant: Dr. Thomas Crawford / Dress: La Petite Fleur Couture Bridal Salon / Shoes: Christian Louboutin / Accessories: Jennifer Behr / Jewelry: Philippe Charriol, Cartier / Suit, Tie, Shirt: Hugo Boss / Shoes: Nocona Boots / Watch: Rolex / Stationery: Emily McCarthy Design / Calligraphy: Sarah Elizabeth Design / Videography: Shark Pig / Floral Design: Cody Floral Design / Hair: TEAM Hair and Makeup / Makeup: Rachel Zimmerman / Rentals: The Tent Merchant, Classic Party Rentals, La Tavola Fine Linen, Town & Country Event Rentals / Music: AMS Entertainment / Dessert: Susie Cakes

    La Tavola Fine Linen is a Snippet & Ink Select vendor. 

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  • Romantic Wedding at San Ysidro Ranch by The Great Romance

    4 June 2015
  • 3 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings, Some Favorites

    Anna and Caleb wanted to focus on their ceremony, and on preparing for marriage not just planning a wedding. Says the bride, “Honestly, with Pinterest and social media these days, I was so overwhelmed. I don’t do well with choices and having a four month engagement automatically helped me narrow down my options.” It’s safe to say these two planned a beautifully timeless wedding, even with just a few months! We especially love Anna’s illusion back dress, the groom’s cake (donuts!), and just how obvious it is that they are so full of joy and love!

    SEE THE GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS TIMELESS WEDDING FROM MANDY BUSBY.

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    Anna wore something old: her grandmother’s earrings; something new: her dress and veil; and something blue: a detail stitched in blue inside her dress.

     

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    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  “You’re not preparing for a wedding, you’re preparing for a marriage.”

    What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  Even though the engagement period can be tough, to enjoy it. I didn’t slow down enough to appreciate that it was still a part of not only our story, but our family’s story as well.

    If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently?  I would definitely have audio recorded the sermon of our ceremony. In addition, I wish I would have enjoyed the planning experience with my mom rather than just looking at the end goal. In the midst of it, I didn’t realize how much that time means to a mom.

     

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    Anna’s bridesmaids wore a variety of full length dresses in a mix of neutral shades.

     

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    “We chose not to have a full wedding video done but rather an 8mm (which we absolutely adore!),” says Anna. “Looking back, I’d recommend that couples at least have your service audio recorded. I would just about give my right arm to be able to listen in full to the teachings and blessings our pastor shared over us.”

     

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    The Ceremony

    “Caleb and I were fortunate enough to grow up in the same church, in families with like-minded biblical beliefs. When choosing where we would stand before the Lord to take each other in marriage, we wouldn’t have considered anywhere else. It seems we had a long journey that led to the moment of our wedding ceremony and that made it all the sweeter. Being surrounded by dearest family and friends that not only supported us; but also supported what we believe in, was so special.”

     

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    Your ceremony in three words.  Worshipful, traditional, and sweet

    How did you go about planning your ceremony?  Our pastor laid out the order that he prefers wedding ceremonies to flow. It was of the utmost importance to us for the ceremony to be much more than a wedding but rather a worship service for all those in attendance. We chose to have the congregation sing “In Christ Alone” in unison; it was powerful standing in that moment and being surrounded by a body of believers worshipping as we took vows.

    Who officiated your ceremony?  Pastor Andrew Siegenthaler is the pastor of the home church Caleb and I grew up in; we were spiritually guided and shaped by his teachings for many years.

    What were your vows like?  We used traditional vows; I think they’re timeless

    Ceremony music:
    Seating of the Family Members: Great is Thy Faithfulness, The Wedding Song
    Wedding Processional: Jesu, Joy of Man’s Desiring
    Bridal Processional: Canon in D
    Congregational Song: In Christ Alone
    Soloist: Knees to the Earth
    Recessional: Ode to Joy

     

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    How perfect is this shot! Definitely one to frame!

     

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    The Reception

    We had originally planned to have the reception on my family’s farm at their barns, I had grown up always wanting to celebrate my marriage on my family’s property. A few weeks before the wedding, loads of rain came and it didn’t seem to be improving much. Due to the wetness and foreseen rain, we chose to move the reception to an old warehouse downtown. Considering our reception was originally supposed to be outside, I wanted to continue the feel that I had initially planned, we carried the rustic theme throughout.”

     

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    Special music:
    First Dance: You Are the Best Thing by Ray Lamontagne
    Father/Daughter: What A Wonderful World by Louis Armstrong
    Mother/Son: How Sweet It Is by James Taylor

     

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    Buffet Menu: Pork Sliders / Grilled Chicken Tenders with Cheese and Tomatoes / Grilled Chicken Tenders Rolled in Cornbread Dressing / Tortellini Salad / Mini Twice Baked Potatoes / Watermelon, Onion, Mint Salad / Cobb Salad / Prosciutto-Wrapped Asparagus / Corn-Stuffed Baby Peppers

    Did you have a signature cocktail?  We served Caleb’s favorite mixed drink at the beginning of the reception-Crown Royal with Sun-Drop.

     

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    What type of cake or dessert did you serve?  I am not usually a huge fan of wedding cake, but our hometown bakery makes wedding cake that I can’t resist. It was an organic design of white icing covering traditional white cake. The groom’s cake was a bit less traditional. Caleb doesn’t eat sweets except donuts and rice krispy treats (two of the sweetest sweets there are!). For his “groom’s cake” he chose to have a donut bar with a variety of donuts from a local donut shop; this included his two favorites-glazed and cinnamon twist.

     

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    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  I love a variety of greenery and vintage inspirations, I wanted that to be a part of the ceremony and reception.

    What was your favorite moment or part of the reception?  It’s overwhelmingly fun being in a room full of 400 people that you cherish and love doing life with. Our reception was a blast! Honestly, every part of it was so much fun!

     

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    Photography: Mandy Busby Creative / Venue, Rentals: The Loft 212 in Cullman, Alabama / Church: Christ Covenant Presbyterian Church / Dress: Heidi Elnora / Shoes: Bare Traps / Suit, Shirt: Jos. A Bank / Shoes: Ellen Edmunds / Stationery: 4 Hats Press, Fine Paperwork / Calligraphy: Sealed  /Floral Design: Julie Kennedy / Hair: Misty Fletcher / Makeup: Bradley Nesbitt / Reception Music: The Undergrounders / Catering: Designs by Grace / Cake: Jan Barnett / Groom’s Cake: Duchess Bakery Donuts

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  • Alabama Wedding at The Loft 212 by Mandy Busby

    1 June 2015
  • 1 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings