Photography by Kate Weinstein.
Happy Thursday! Today we have a sweet spring wedding to share with you from Southern California. A sunny outdoor ceremony, relaxed garden party complete with twinkle lights, and a dance floor that was never empty for a minute. This fun couple even brought their first home to their wedding with them – a vintage Airstream trailer remodelled by the groom – read on to find out all about it!
Why did you choose this location for your ceremony? Our ceremony and reception were at the same venue. We loved its spacious feel and outdoor areas, and could really envision our day happening here. The ceremony site was right in front of a beautiful oak tree, and created the perfect backdrop. We liked how the ceremony and reception were at the same venue, but felt separate. We also liked its natural beauty. The hills and fields made for a very laid-back, simple setting, which we loved. We aren’t into fancy or showy type things, so this was a perfect fit.
Is there anything you’d like to share that helps to tell the story of your wedding ceremony? We did something a little different at the start of our ceremony. We had everyone besides me (so family, groom, pastor, bridesmaids/groomsmen, flower girl/ring bearer) enter the space as normal, and then our pastor did a welcome and a charge to the groom. After speaking to Davin, he said “Are you ready for your Bride?” And at that moment, our siblings started playing the music and behind beautiful wooden doors we had placed at the start of the aisle my father and I emerged. It was such a surreal moment, one that we will always remember. We chose to do it this way, so that we and our guests could take a moment, and feel the weight of what was about to happen. We also liked the fact that it kept our guests on their toes, as no one really knew when I was coming out from the doors. It was different to the traditional flow of a ceremony and felt unique to us.
Your ceremony in three words. Christ-centered, personal, joyful.
Who officiated your ceremony? How did you choose him/her? Dr. Steve Gerali officiated our wedding. He was my husband’s mentor all through college and such a man of God. He has become a good friend and knows us both well. He did an amazing job and kept our ceremony completely Christ-centered, and true to us. We are forever grateful for his the words he spoke on our wedding day. We find them running through our heads often.
How did you go about planning your ceremony? We basically just outlined what we knew we wanted, such as our non-traditional entrance, having our siblings sing, having a friend speak, and us reading our own vows. We took those elements to our Pastor, and he helped us work out a ceremony template that flowed and was true to us.
What were your ceremony readings? We read our own vows, our Pastor spoke and prayed, and we had a friend write and read something for us. (If you would like to hear some things that were said by our Pastor, and the reading from our friend, please watch our video below!)
What were your vows like? We chose to write our own vows, as we really wanted to promise each other things that were specific to us. They were each so beautiful and true to who we are.
What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony? I don’t know if we could pick a specific thing! We loved it all. The atmosphere created by having our closet family and friends with us, along with the presence of the Lord so evident while we made sacred vows to one another was overwhelming.
What was your ceremony music? Our Bridal Party and family walked down the aisle to Dear True Love by Sleeping At Last. My Dad and I walked down the aisle to You’re My Everything by Owl City, played live by my brother Noah and Davin’s sister Erika. During the ceremony my brother Noah, Davin’s sister Erika and Davin’s father Ed led us in Amazing Grace, it was so special! Our recessional song was I’d Do Anything For You by Foster the People (starting at the chorus).
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? We really wanted our day to not only be Christ-centered, but also really represent us as a couple! We focused on elements that truly showcased our likes, personalities, friends, families and love.
What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding? Enjoy it! Everything will get done and this is such a special time to not only prepare a beautiful day, but to also prepare for your marriage. Focus on each other more than details, and your day will ultimately be beautiful.
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of your wedding? My husband is a photographer, but in his spare time he remodels vintage Airstream trailers. He decided to remodel a 1966 Airstream Safari to be our first home after we got married. He worked so hard and it turned out amazingly well! We decided it would be so cool to have the Airstream at the wedding as part of the decor, and for our friends and family to be able to “tour our first home”. So Davin pulled the Airstream from Michigan (where he is from) to California for the wedding! Guests had so much fun seeing our home and the work Davin had put in. We loved having it there!
More from Holly…
Davin bought the Airstream on Craigslist about a year before the wedding. He then completely gutted it and remodeled it from the floor up. Lots of love, sweat, and tears went into it, as a good chunk of the remodel was done in Michigan in the winter. Davin worked on it in several feet of snow, and sometimes when the temperature dropped below zero. He also added a ton of personal touches (full size shower, lofted bed, bar, etc) as we were going to be living out of it for the foreseeable future. This was really cool for Davin, as it was a hands on way for him to process our upcoming marriage.
A month before the wedding, Davin drove it out to California where we added some finishing touches. It was so special to be able to share this project with all of our friends and family at the wedding.
Our first couple months as newlyweds were spent on the beach at an rv park in San Diego :) We loved every second we were there, and touched the beach every single day. The Airstream was quite the conversation piece. From there, we towed it across the country to Michigan (and made some very fun pit stops along the way), where we had it parked on Davin’s family’s lake property for the summer.
The overall experience for us was unmatched. The Airstream was small (21′ hitch to bumper), but we wouldn’t trade those months for anything. It wasn’t as glamorous as you’d imagine, but it was truly an invaluable way to start our marriage. We we were in tight quarters so there was no “going to another room,” we had one sink for everything (dishes, brushing our teeth, you name it), a composting toilet that felt like you were in a coat closet when you were using it, etc. etc. etc… We have so many fun stories from our time in the Airstream. If we ever need a good laugh we just think back to those times. We loved this process so much that we’ve begun remodeling other Airstreams for other couples looking for a once in a lifetime adventure.
How would you describe your reception? Our reception was a great big party that was so unique to us! We put a lot of time and effort into creating a space in which people could get a feel for our relationship and really remember the night! We wanted to keep people on their toes. Every moment was filled with such joy. From the grand entrance, to the cake cutting, and the speeches, to the lip syncing, we were always smiling! I did not expect to, but we honestly danced for most of the reception. The floor was never empty and being surrounded by so many people that we loved created such a sense of celebration. Plus our DJ was outstanding!
What was the best advice you received as a bride? “Relax, don’t be anxious, for all are there to celebrate your love and commitment, and are on your side.”
Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about? The wood chargers that were under each guests plate at the tables, were hand cut from White Ash Trees in Michigan but my husband and a friend, they were amazing! We also planned our entire wedding ourselves, we wanted to make sure the day completely represented us. We wanted people to walk in and say “this is so Holly & Davin”.
What was your first dance song? Father/daughter or mother/son dance?
First Dance: My younger brother Noah is a singer/songwriter and when my husband and I got engaged, Noah started writing a song for Davin and I. He said he was inspired by our relationship and wanted to share that with us through this song, and pictured us using it for our first dance. At our reception, my brother played and sang the song along with Davin’s older sister Erika. It was such a special first dance, and such a surreal moment to hear their voices and look around at everyone we love most.
Father/Daughter dance: Rainbow Connection by Kenny Loggins (my dad used to sing it to me when I was a little girl and we would dance)
Mother/Son dance: You’ve Got A Friend by James Taylor
What type of cake or dessert did you serve? For our dessert, we did something a little different. Our favorite dessert place is called Bahama Bucks and they serve Tropical Shaved Ice, with ice cream at the bottom, yum! So we had them come out and make them on the spot. The guests got to choose from a list of flavor and make their custom shaved ice creation. We did have a cake for Davin and I, it was a beautiful “naked cake” that was actually a funfetti cake inside (Davin’s favorite) It was really whimsical and fun!
What was your favorite moment or part of the reception? We loved dancing the night away with our friends and family! I don’t think we stopped smiling the entire time. Everyone was filled with so much joy!
If you had it to do over again, is there anything you would do differently? Honestly not really! Maybe make the whole thing longer? We didn’t want it to end!