Photography by Jenny Smith & Co.
We have such a relaxed, fun wedding to share with you today! With bridesmaids in stunning icy blue Amsale gowns and a fresh, all white floral palette featuring lush hydrangeas, the only other element Jennifer & Bart needed for the ideal summer beach wedding was perfect weather – and funnily enough, being in Malibu, they got just that!
Don’t Jennifer and her bridesmaids just look beautiful? Her white gown against the blue of theirs looks so fresh and clean, and ideal for a beach wedding. She told us “my gown was from Lilian West, and I removed the sleeves from it. I really wanted a dress that was backless, but still strapless, and it was the perfect option. I loved it because it was simple and romantic.”
Why did you choose this location for your ceremony? I grew up in Point Dume, and spent many years going to Westward Beach and The Sunset growing up, so this location has a special place in my heart. My husband and I live in Tennessee now, so he was ecstatic about the idea of having a wedding on the beach (which we both love), and especially one that has such significance to me.
What was your ceremony music? The wedding party processional walked down to Somewhere Only We Know by Vitamin String Quartet. My dad and I walked down to A Thousand Years by The Piano Guys. The recessional was Signed, Sealed, Delivered by Stevie Wonder.
Your ceremony in three words. Simple, beautiful, loving.
Who officiated your ceremony? How did you choose him/her? We picked Susan Klein, my minister that I grew up with.
How did you go about planning your ceremony? Susan helped a lot with the ceremony template. The most important part for us was that the ceremony was unique to us and our relationship. We wanted to have some traditional aspects, but still tailor it to us.
What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony? My favorite thing about the ceremony was the personal homily where our minister highlighted how my husband and I came from two different worlds – my husband growing up in Kingsport, Tennessee and me growing up in Malibu, California – and how our differences compliment each other. In terms of details, I loved our DIY wedding arch and lanterns!
What were your ceremony readings? We chose our readings ourselves, and that was really important to us. The first reading was a piece by Hilary T Smith: “People are like cities: We all have alleys and gardens and secret rooftops and places where daisies sprout between the sidewalk cracks, but most of the time all we let each other see is is a postcard glimpse of a skyline or a polished square. Love lets you find those hidden places in another person, even the ones they didn’t know were there, even the ones they wouldn’t have thought to call beautiful themselves.”
The second reading was a Gospel reading – a reading from Paul’s first letter to the Corinthians: 1
What were your vows like? We went with the traditional vows, partly because my husband is deathly afraid of public speaking! After those, we each said the following: “N, I give you this ring as a symbol of my vow, and with all that I am, and with all that I have, I honor you, in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.”
Please tell us any other details you’d like to share about your ceremony. Another of my favorite moments was walking down the aisle after the ceremony was over. It was a mixture of excitement, relief, and pure happiness.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? Remember that the small details of your wedding are not what you will remember after the day is over. I think it is most important to invest your time, energy, and money into the things that you will have for a lifetime after the wedding; splurge on things like photography.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? The best advice I received was to not let the stress of planning take over and to actually enjoy our engagement and wedding and be present with each other.
What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding? I would give them the same advice I received, and to make sure all the little things are planned out in advance, so when the time comes you can relax.
How would you describe your reception? The reception was decorated simply and romantically. It was a celebration – lots of dancing, laughter, and celebratory cocktails!
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? I was inspired by the beautiful location, which didn’t require a whole lot of decorations. I wanted the wedding to have a rustic beach vibe, and to be a representation of us.
The flowers for the day were a beautiful, almost-all-white mix of hydrangeas, roses, ranunculus, dusty miller, and dahlias.
What type of cake or dessert did you serve? We served a three tiered, all white cake, decorated with white roses. The cake was vanilla with fresh fruit filling (strawberries, raspberries, and blueberries), and the top layer was lemon cake – my husband’s favorite!
Please tell us about any other special details or moments from your reception. The speeches were very special. The father of the bride, maid of honor, and best man all gave great speeches.
What was your favorite moment or part of the reception? My favorite part was probably our first dance as husband and wife.
What was your first dance song? Father/daughter or mother/son dance? Our first dance song was Stay With You by John Legend. The father/daughter dance song was Unforgettable by Nat King Cole and the mother/son dance song was Have I Told You Lately by Rod Stewart.