Set against the backdrop of Mill Valley’s redwood trees, the Ralston White Retreat was an intimate and obvious venue choice for Jennie and Eric’s wedding. They filled the reception space with tons of flowers and vines, served guests a newspaper wedding cake, and had a DIY photo booth – all of which made for a beautiful and fun celebration.
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? We wanted a fun, relaxed atmosphere, and for the wedding weekend to feel like a retreat for family and close friends. We wanted the event to feel easy for our guests to enjoy. We also wanted it to be a little weird (like us)! The venue, Ralston White Retreat, was awesome. The staff there was so helpful, and really contributed to the low key, relaxed mood of the weekend.
Your ceremony in three words. Authentic. Unusual. Funny.
Who officiated your ceremony? Rev. Maggie Beretz. We found her on Yelp and she was phenomenal!
What was your ceremony music? The processional was “God Only Knows” by the Beach Boys. We picked it one day while driving in the car. It’s a beautiful song, but it also has a bit of an edge if you really listen to the lyrics. We liked that. Honestly, we picked the recessional the day before the ceremony (we just forgot about it!). We went with the Charlie Brown theme song, “Linus and Lucy,” which also happens to be my ringtone.
Did you include any traditions in your ceremony? We bowed to our parents at the end, which is a Korean tradition.
What were your ceremony readings? We chose a selection of Bible verses.
What were your vows like? We wrote our own. They were the highlight of the ceremony.
What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony? Just being able to be ourselves.
“I’d describe our reception as a great party. We wanted a fun, relaxed feeling for our wedding and that’s what it was.”
How did you go about planning your wedding? We divvied up tasks based on who wanted to do what. We had a lot of help from my sister, who has much better taste than either of us! A friend of ours graciously volunteered to be the day-of coordinator, so, you know, he basically saved the wedding, and we’re thinking of naming our first-born after him.
What was your favorite moment or part of the reception? The speeches from family and friends.
Special songs: First dance: Jem’s version of Maybe I’m Amazed // Father/daughter and Mother/son: Stand By Me by Ben E. King
Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about? We set up a “hipster photo booth” consisting of two Fuji instax instant cameras and tons of film. Guests took 100+ photos, which were really fun to go through the next day.
Are there any special or funny moments you’d like to share with us? I made Eric carry me for a photo, and he ripped his pants while setting me down!
What type of cake or dessert did you serve? The wedding cake was our most personal touch – it was designed to look like a stack of college newspapers (we first met while writing for the college paper). We cut the cake with the same knife that Eric’s parents used to cut their cake.