i LOVE our photographer - jamie grenough. simply amazing and a dream to work with. she made our day prfect and captured everything! thank you jamie!
Giao Ngyugen did my hair and makep and made me look and feel amazing. She also created my hair flower for me. Working with her was the best - she's so talented, creative and sweet!
My sweet husband has amazing taste in jewelry and purchased a diamond necklace for me on our first Christmas. The next year he gave me matching earrings. My friend and I made my bracelet using vintage glass beads from Germany. Our rings were custom made and design by my husband by Randy , a jeweler in San Francisco. My shoes are Lauren by Ralph Lauren in graphite. Finally, my husband gave me a beautiful Links bracelet on the day before to celebrate our marriage!
My dress was a Jenny Lee gown, number 607, purchased at Unique Bride, in Burlingame, CA. This is the onlt Bay Area shop to carry this designer. Words cannot describe how much I loved this dress, and how gorgeous I felt in it! Silk taffeta with amazing construction and detail - yet so light and easy to wear. Julie Ireland did an amazing job on the alterations and custom-made my sash in the dark silver color. Fabric for the sash wasd purchased at Britex Fabrics.
a few moments captured by Jamie while I was getting dressed.
MY PERSONAL FLOWERS:
All our flowers were created by the adorable and talented Amy Burke of amy burke designs. Fpr ant Bay Area Brides, I cannot recommend her enough. She is talented and has amazing visiion and brought our dreams to life and beyond. we love her! I loved my bouquet and didn't want to put it down!
GETTING READY IN THE SUITE:
we reserved a luxury suite at Rosewood Sand Hill for the before and of our wedding. We loved our suite. Here are our photos of the suite, our friends and family, and bridal party during the morning of our wedding. My dad is looking at a photo book of Bill and I growing up that our moms made for us; my sister, my mom and dad taking photos, and my bridesmaid and I with one of many bottles of bubbly enjoyed throughout the day!
I am so lucky to marry my best friend and an amazing guy all in the same person. Here are photos as he got ready. I purchased custom cufflinks bt etsy eller featuring his favorite team, the NY Yankees. Bill custom designed his suit at Brooks Brothers and looked so handsome. We purchased all the ties from the tie bar and loved their service and quality. Bill also packed a cliff bar for me in case I had forgotten to eat throughout the day - so sweet. Finally I've included a snapshot of Bill opening my b-pics book for him. He loved it by the way!
Here are a few other images including the custom converse my bridesmaids made for me; the papersource stamps used on our seating cards; and the champagne toast prior to our ceremony and our priest's rites book.
Bill and I opted for a "first look" and to do our photos prior to the wedding. I'm so glad we did because the photos were so important to us and it gave us hours to get these shots rather than being rushed during the reception! There are so many images and I haven't had enough time to narrow down my favorites!
we started our photo session at rosewood sand hill. i was just so happy to see Bill - he looked so handsome! we kissed a lot, i'm sure you can tell just by looking at these photos! Bill custom designed his suit through Brooks Brothers. I wore a Jenny Lee gown. Hair and makeup was by Giao Nguyen. You can also see our mini family paparazzi!
Then we left the resort and went to Sharon Park just a few moments away.
just a few of the whole group!
my two maids of honor thumb wrestling to see who gets to sign the marriage license - one is also holding her champagne and the other is nearly 6 months pregnant!
officially married! love this photo of my husband!
DIY signature drink menus in addition to the full bar service
one of friends enjoying bill's favorite cocktail - the manhattan! or in our case, the bill-hattan!
one of my favorite shots of my dad!
as you can see, our wedding had many hilarious moments. everyone is amazed at how many of them Jamie captured. so wonderful!
one of the passed appetizers - sliders!
yum! so good. couldn't resist! i think i had 2 or 3!
posing with my sis for another guest! she's gorgeous!
our DIY guestbook created with our e-pics (also Jamie) and our DIY event signage
and another extra special detail are my dads legendary caramels - of course making an appearance. we went through hundreds of these and only had 80 guests at the wedding!
i loved our look and feel of the entire wedding, especially the reception. it was perfect! we had a dream team of vendors - highlighting here the stunning venue, Rosewood Sand Hill and beyond talented designer & florist Amy Burke. All photos are by Jamie Grenough - simply one of the best out there!
Our theme was "modern, romantic" as my husband is a sentimental romantic and I'm a modern minimalist - we chose romantic elements in modern arrangements and style - and focused our decor in greys, whites, and yellows. we chose the colors first and it happened that the venue matched perfectly down to the damask details on the hand painted silk wall panels. love. sigh. if only this was my reality every day...
centerpieces alternated in high and low styles throughout the room. table numbers were named after our firsts - i.e. first dinner together, first vacation together, first baseball game, etc. it was a nice conversation starter and a fun reminder of our history together.
Rosewood provided all the gorgeous table top elements including the beautiful chargers, stemware, silverware, linen napkins, table clothes and overlays, votives, chairs, and table stands, and even the menu jackets as shown above in the napkin fold. it was gorgeous.
our escort and seating cards were a DIY project. folded panel cards were purchased at Papersource, along with the damask stamp, ink, powders, and embossing gun. Escort cards are shown above. Place cards used the same stamp inverted at the bottom of each card along with an entree designation in yellow as seen in above photos. My bridesmaid wrote all our guests names with her beyond perfect hand writing. love her!
We started our reception with an introduction of our bridal party, then immediately into the first dance. We took lessons and had a choreographed routine by Kayla North, of Arthur Murray in Redwood City. She's amazing!
We had a 4-course dinner and two best men / maids of honor, my dad , and my husband. The toasts were funny and sentimental, and sweet - just perfect! here are a few shots of the action!
My MOH's toast involved many of the nicknames I've had during my life. All my girlfriends took part with costumes and the likes. It was hilarious!
Our two best men gave amazing toasts, filled with memories, love and humor.
The guys ended their remarks with a surprise serenade to Bill - in College they were all in an acapella group and are quite talented. They recruited Aileen to be the acting lead, as Bill usually is the lead vocalist - it was so special for Bill.
There wasn't a dry eye in the house when my dad gave his speech. We are all very close and my dad often joked about having too many girls (3) and not enough sons (0). His speech centered on how much he loves all of his girls and how he feels blessed to have "adopted" my friends throughout my life. I was quite emotional - such a sweet dad.
my sisters and i with my dad after, followed by all my dad's girls!
Father / Daughter & Mother / Son Dance - we chose the song "Wild World" by Cat Stevens.
Now not to be outdone, my adorable husband has a few things to say. He talked about his father who passed away about 6 years earlier and how much he loved me. It was funny, sweet, and truly one of the best parts of our wedding.
Then my so talented husband sang "A Change in my Life" with his group. It was the best I ever heard him sing.
My husband had been teased by my sis all week long so to get even, he pulled her out on the floor and serenaded her with "Pretty Woman"... Hysterical!
My parents dancing! So sweet!
The party - some of our guests. I love this shot!
I believe this may have been something along the lines of 80's hair metal band... too funny!
It was absolutely the best day of my life the day I married Bill. I wasn't stressed or upset by anything and there wasn't a thing I would have changed. I love these upcoming shots because they capture the fun and the very special once in a lifetime feelings.
these are my favorites because it was one of the very sweet private moments we had during the celebration. neither of us knew the photographer was there.
Cheryl Burr of Pinkies Bakery created the best, most delicious cake ever. Eac layer of our wedding cake was actually two layer combined. Flavors included devilsfood chocolate mousse and coconut chiffon. The whit fondant actually had a sparkle luster shimmer added for additional drama. Silver ribbon and a sugar peony flower finished the cake.
Our grooms cake is the larger than life Yankees themed chocolate cake and it was just simply amazing.
FI's darling mom sent these invitations in the mail today - they are gorgeous and amazing print / paper quality. i love them and think she did such an amazing job! I'm so lucky to have such a great future mom!
we had a great rehearsal - full of fun and laughter! i'm below with my two moms (mine and bill's) and a snapshot my mom took during the rehearsal. our officiant, with the white robed monks of st. benedict was amazing and made the rehearsal so much fun with his jokes!
following our rehearsal, we all headed to Cedro Ristorante for an amazing dinner and evening of celebration. the food was delicious and we loved every minute of it! a few of my girlfriends posed with me prior to be seated for dinner.
the private dining room at cedro, glassed in patio with heaters, perfect for 40 people in a long king table setting. for this event, we wanted to tie in bill's italian heritage and chose an amazing italian restaurant, cedro, in menlo park. we used potted italian herbs that our guests could take home after the event.
my bridesmaid erica wrote out the names on our seating cards and we stamped entree selections on each card. the cards were placed in individual artichokes at each setting.
for our menus, i found recycled paper that felt and looked like grocery bags. i loved the look and feel for our rehearsal along with the plants and artichokes.
this is my beautiful aunt and a photo of my handsome husband giving a very sweet thank you to everyone attending and to everyone for their role in our history and to his mom for hosting the event. he's just too sweet and perfect!
Bill and I had so much fun taking our Engagement Photos throughout the neighborhood of Potrero Hill in San Francisco. Here are a few of our favorites! For anyone interested, I cannot recommend Jamie Grenough (http://www.jamiegrenoughphotography.com/) enough. Not only is she amazingly talented but she is wonderful to work with a truly dear person. We feel so lucky to have found her!
We are so excited for our wedding dream team. I've worked with many of our vendors in the past and know they will do an amazing job. I highly recommend any of their services, particularly if you are in Northern California!
EDIT: I'm working on post wedding reviews now for all of the following!
THE DREAM TEAM:
The following vendors are truly amazing and worth their weight in platinum. You will not go wrong with anyone on this list. They made our wedding beyond perfect and more than I ever imagined.
Venue: Rosewood Sand Hill - website - Shari & Melissa A+
*includes guestrooms, ceremony venue, reception venue, brunch, yoga class, and spa
Dress Designer: Jenny Lee - website - A
Alterations: Julie Ireland - website - Julie - A
Cake: Pinkies Bakery in San Francisco - website - Cheryl - A
Invitations: Creative Designs by Mimi - website - Mimi - A
Flowers / Decor: Amy Burke Designs - website - Amy - A+
Photographer: Jamie Grenough Photography - website - Jamie - A+
Hair / Makeup: Giao Nguyen - website - Giao - A+
Officiant: Father Patrick Belomi with the White Robed Monks - website - Father Patrick Belomi - A
Entertainment: Entire Productions - website - Natasha - A
Ceremony Music: Tomas Michaud - website - Tomas - A
Reception Entertainment: Full Service DJ - website - Daniel / DJ Imani - A+
Lighting: Swank Audio-Visual - website - Dave - B
Dance Lessons: Arthur Murray Dance Studio - website - Kayla - A
Rehearsal Dinner: Cedro Ristorante - website - Elizabeth - A
In addition to the key elements, we also benefitted from the following great vendors:
Dress: Unique Bride in Burlingame - website - Mary - A
B-pics: Studio by Carmen - website - Carmen - A+
Hair Extensions: source - A
Bridesmaid Dresses: JCrew - website - A
Bridesmaid Pashminas: source - A
Bridesmaid Brooches (for necklaces): Fabulous Brooch - website - B
Bridesmaid Pearls (for necklaces): General Bead - website - B
Grooms Attire: Brooks Brother - website - B
Groom's Cufflinks: Etsy source - A
Groomsmen Suits: Purchased through Men's Warehouse - website - C
Groomsmen Ties: The Tie Bar - website - A
Socks for the Guys: Express - website - A
Out of Town Guest Guides and Guest Book: MixBook - website - A
Out of Town Wecome Box materials: bags and bows - website - A
Paper (for DIY event signage / printing): TextSource - website - Mindy - A
DIY decor materials / supplies: PaperSource - website - A
Guest Accommodations: Embassy Suites - Burlingame - website - A
See reviews for notes on these additional vendors
B-pics Book Publishing: Ritz Camera - website A on book quailty; F on service & experience
Guest Accommodations - alternate venue: Westin Palo Alto - website NA - did not use
I wanted to surprise Bill with a pre-anniversary celebration. As we had already booked our wedding at Rosewood, I planned a romantic weekend away and didn't tell Bill the destination. We had such a wonderful experience from the minute we arrived. Dinner at Madera was perfect; our room was wonderful; and the service was impeccable. We are so excited for our wedding and know that it will be perfect at this beautiful destination.
Here are some snapshots we took during our visit along with a few images that we've found on other blogs and photographer's sites including Stephanie Williams (landscape, shot 4; and detail image, shot 11).
The first two photos show our ceremony venue (the lawn) and the cocktail reception (on the veranda). Then the gorgeous pool area followed by our ballroom in various stages of set-up and event styling. As mentioned the beautiful grounds shot and the last shot focused on the table and wall details is from the website of Stephanie Williams.
The table decor including the gorgeous chargers and votives are included with the event package. I LOVE them. Also included is Villeroy & Boch bone china, Eme "Baugette" flatware, Schott Zwiesel "Tritan" Stemware, Rivolta Carmignani Table linens and napkins, tables and chairs as shown above, custom teak dance floor (see picture above), and hotel staging. All in all, this will save us a great deal in rentals and will make for a beautifully set table .
EDIT: Originally we planned to bring in specialty gun metal pintuck linens, however after seeing them with the charger, we are re-thinking that element.
Our colors will be a gun metal silver color with white, canary yellow and silver accents. Before we picked our colors, I realized that all the clothes I had been purchasing were either grey or yellow. Then, I was talking with a friend about the colors and she recommended Rosewood as a perfect match. The Ballroom of the venue has a dark grey damask hand painted pattern on soft yellow silk fabric. It was perfect!
I just had my hair and makeup trial with Giao Nguyen and I love her! Absolutely love her! I'll highlight specifically in my review. I wanted a dramatic look, with smoky eyes, and an unique updo with texture and style. Giao helped layer on my smoky eyes till they were just perfect and then started on my hair - I loved her style and recommendations and we played with a few varieties till everything was just perfect. The top photos were snapped at Giao's studio, the others later in the evening.
I love my ring! FI designed it himself and it was a complete surprise to me - I had no idea he was working on it or that he was about to propose! I love everything about it and it is everything I wanted - FI did a great job!
we just received our wedding bands today! I love them... FI designed both of these as well with our same jeweler and I think he did an amazing job. I wish I could wear it now but thankfully I only have to wait 30 days!
We are hoping for a modern look with a little romantic inspiration and whimsy in our stationary and are working with Creative Designs by Mimi (http://www.creativemimi.com) Mimi is amazing and I cannot recommend her enough) We love her! She's talented and creative and such a gem of a person!
We just finalized our save the dates and have assembled them! The STD's are a mini streamlined version of the invitation (images to follow). Our invites are printed in dark grey ink on white paper and backed with a metallic gun metal silver color. Matching gun metal envelopes are embossed with our return address and guest names are hand written in light silver metallic ink.
we just received our invitations from creative designs by mimi and i cannot recommend her enough as the most amazing vendor. i love her and the work she did for us. the process was seamless, quick and easy. the product is fantastic and the turn around time was so fast! LOVE.
I just realized I hadn't updated my Bio with photos of our guest book using our engagement photos (by Jamie Grenough) shot in Potrero Hill, San Francisco, in October 2009. The book was printed through mixbook.com and I am really happy with the final product!
Here are a few photos:
My good friend makes jewelry and offered to help me with really simple grey ribbon pearl necklaces. However I attended a Stella and Dot jewelry party and fell in love with the idea of a 3-strand pearl necklace with a flower clasp. So... my very nice girlfriend agreed to continue to help me create a variation on this necklace.
We purchased the brooches from FabulousBrooch.com and attached to the clasps of the necklace. All the silver pearls came from General Bead in San Francisco. We bought out their inventory and ordered more. I actually over-ordered but it is better to be safe than sorry, right? I used some of the extra beads to make their bracelets.
we ordered ties for our groomsen (the tie bar) and yellow / grey argyle socks (express). We custom made the jewelry for our bridesmaids along with a grey pashmina (ebay - specific vendor information to follow) and included a little grey yellow journal (michaels). i purchased the yellow gift bags at target and grey tissue paper at bagsandbows.com. we printed our custom monogram on 8.5x11 full sheet label paper and cut out to size.
After seeing everyone's great DIY projects, I decided that I could dust off the cobwebs of my creativity and join in on the fun! Papersource made it easy with a quick 5 minute tutorial on how to emboss and a template for the envelope lining. We already had the embosser from the save the dates and it took no time at all to put these together. I love the thank you stamp font. I sent these out after our E-party - nothing fancy or uber-complicated, but it was a fun project.
For our wedding thank you notes, we created these fun silver thank you notes. Paper was sourced through TextStyle Designs in Middleton, MA with the help of Mindy Wogan. They were a great vendor. Stamps and ink through Papersource, my favorite art / gift supply store.
Bill and I have a lot of out of town guests attending our wedding - nearly 70% to be exact. This coupled with our wedding being near the amazing destination of San Francisco (where we live), we wanted to create custom guide books of our favorite places - be it a view, a coffee shop, a wine bar, etc. Each page has the address, website and phone number for each attraction and a story - like how Bill proposed at my favorite northern California beach - Moss Beach. Most of the photos have us in them or were taken by us (photo enthusiasts). Our amazing engagement photos are also included - shot by the very talented and creative Jamie Grenough.
We used mixbook.com and loved it completely - it is really easy to format and design online with many design features available. uploading photos and changing page designs was a breeze. Taking it from design to production was also simple and the actual book is amazing quality. I highly recommend this company if you are interested in photo books. The paper on the cover is a heavy weight glossy (we ordered the 4x6 paperback) and the pages are also a lovely sheen, lighter weight paper. We received a volume pricing discount for our order so the books were not that expensive at all for qty 50. Cheaper than many of the competitor sites and look so professional - especially the binding, photo quality, and paper.
Here is our book! I love it and can't wait to include it with our welcome gifts for our guests!
cover: engagement photo by jamie grenough; first page: thank you for joining us at our wedding.
page 2-3: snapshots from our favorite views in SF; page 4-5: favorite museums and attractions
page 6-7: ferry building and potrero neighborhood; page 8-9: the marina where i lived before meeting FI
page 10-11: presidio and crissy field and page 12-13: marin county, headlands and picco pizzeria
page 14-15: sonoma county favorites; page 16-17: shopping, food, and wine in burlingame and palo alto
page 18: santa cruz mountains - fogarty and alice's; page 19: moss beach - where Bill proposed!!!
page 20: another engagement photo in potrero hill as is the back cover. both by jamie grenough.
many of our guests are traveling from out of town and we wanted to put together a little welcome box for them to help make them feel comfortable and at home. Here are a few shots.
we included our custom "visitors guide", local maps and resource books, matching pencils, locally produced snacks including Tcho origin chocolates, pop chips, and 18 rabbits organic granola bars, along with local bottled water, schedule of events, and personalized welcome notes.
we created these little reserved signs for our immediate family and participants during the ceremony. Ribbons will tie under the back of the white wood folding chair for our ceremony.
materials source: TextStyle Designs with the assistance of Mindy Wogan. A great vendor experience.
we created our table numbers based on a "first" experience we shared together. i.e. a first date, a first vacation, etc. guests commented on how it was a great conversation piece for meeting new people seated at their table.
our signature drinks were listed with custom names based on our wedding, each of us and our sweet rescue greyhound. signature drinks included the mennonite approved (non alcoholic spritzer as I was raised mennonite); along with a marry me-ito; a bill-hattan; a krystarita; and hank's refresher (a pink greyhound)
I have to be the luckiest girl... not only is my FI just adorable but I have the best group of girlfriends ever! To celebrate my bachelorette, 8 of my close girlfriends whisked me off to a beautiful estate in Sonoma. I only knew Sonoma was our destination and to pack a lot of pink clothes.
We had a gorgeous house, beautiful pool, amazing food and wine, private winery tours, chef's tasting dinner, chic flicks, boot camp, great shopping, tons of champagne and constant giggles. Everyone wore shades of pink all weekend long as my favorite beverage is rose champagne (as you may have read in other posts).
As a little thank you on our first night, I wanted to give the girls something special and personalized for each of them. I chose to make DIY magnets as shown here: http://www.notmartha.org/tomake/marblemagnets/. As you may be able to tell, we never mind posing for the camera so I had plenty of photos from the past years to choose from. I made 4 magnets for each of the girls and then wrapped to match the theme of the weekend.
I purchased the favor boxes, pink ribbon, and white flowers at Michaels along with most of the supplies for the magnets. I purchased the kabochons at Tap Plastics (online), and re-purposed some "Victoria's Secret" tissue paper that I had after purchasing HM lingerie!
It was so fun watch ing the girls all look at each other's magnets! I highly recommend this as it was a relatively easly project and very unique.
My lovely ladies planned an amazing weekend in Sonoma for my bachelorette weekend. The girls know I LOVE pink sparkling wine and themed accordingly. Everyone (9 girls) wore pink all weekend.
Friday night we arrived to rainy weather and settled into our gorgeous house. we had a delicious taco dinner (my favorite), drank pink wine, opened gifts and watched fun girl movies.
Saturday morning, we had a great breakfast and morning boot camp work out (i have a dress to fit in you know!). Then we got ready for a day of wine tasting. My girls of course outfitted me with additional pink accessories just in case... I don't really think it is TOO noticeable...
even the trees in the yard matched our pink theme - see the beautiful flowering branches?
My girlfriends arranged private winery cave tours and tastings, along with a picnic lunch and mini champagne bottles!
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clearly i'm not shy - these were snapped while enjoying a little vino... i even managed to hitch a ride with a winery sculpture! don't ask me how i managed to get in there...
after the wineries, we all went home and got dolled up for a delicious dinner out at el dorado kitchen, one of my favorite places... love that all the girls are still pinked out!
and finally, how could a bachelorette conclude without a little fun at the local watering hole, and an irish one at that? cheers!
all i can say is that i have the BEST group of amazing girlfriends and feel so lucky!
As you can see above, my girls were really amazing for my bachelorette. To thank them, I picked one of my favorite photos and enlarged to 5x7 size. I purchased silver frames and created pink inspired thank you gifts for them. Since our wedding is using grey and feathers as two key elements, I balanced out the pink with a little wedding style too! I hope they like them! For two of my bridesmaids who organized the entire weekend, I also included sephora gift cards.
My Bridesmaids - Erica and Rikka threw an amazing shower today in the private room at Spruce in San Francisco. I love this restaurant and it was such a beautiful celebration with my girls!
We enjoyed the most delicious menu paired with champagne and wine... delicious!
- harvest vegetable salad with avocado green goddess and aged ricotta
- roasted halibut with artichokes bariguole, grilled spring onions and chick peas
- passion fruit and banana sorbet with pineapple, mango, and strawberry
Here are a few photos, starting with the great art above the fireplace in the private room! My girls ordered the beautiful white and pink flowers seen below.
enjoying dessert and gift opening (1 of many!)
posing with Erica, my Bridesmaid who arranged the shower and opening my "custom" converse in pink of course, with "pistol" embroidered on the side. Pistol is my nickname with many of my friends!
The girls who helped make today so special and wonderful! xoxo ladies!
first... i LOVE carmen with studio by carmen. she's amazing. if you have the chance to book her, do it. without question. just do it! she's so sweet and great and quite talented. i narrowed my gallery down to 40 pics and here's a taste of my favorites. now i'm off to make the book for FH...
makeup: sephora, burlingame; hair: alicia de jesus at chapin court, burlingame
We are planning a modern romantic themed wedding using a palette of gun metal, whites, and yellow. We will be playing on traditional romantic elements (to match FI's style and personality) but in a clean, modern style (my style). We are using texture and whimsy in our design plans, incorporating lace, feathers, candles, beautiful flowers and amazing fabrics.
We are getting married at Rosewood Sand Hill - a newly opened resort in Menlo Park, CA. I actually toured the property before it opened and immediately fell in love. The natural luxury of the property is a perfect match to the look and feel of our wedding. Given that a majority of our guests would be traveling to attend our wedding, we wanted to find a venue that was warm and special as well as luxurious. The design of the Ballroom compliments our event design perfectly - even to the color of the walls with the beautiful hand painted silk panels.
We will have an outdoor ceremony hosted on the Vista Lawn with a Flamenco style guitar soloist playing. Immediately following the ceremony, guests will enjoy a cocktail reception on the Veranda, lawn and prefunction space. Our cocktail reception will feature signature champagne cocktails as well as a full bar. A formal tasting menu dinner will be hosted in the Ballroom followed by dancing. Finally before our guests depart, they will enjoy a late night taco cart!
So many of the brides and vendors on pw have provided such great and wonderful inspiration in our planning process - it has been a great resource for us in planning so far. Special thanks to jamiesue and jaryce21 for the inspiration boards below that helped visualize our wedding theme and style.
Our wedding design is themed around the concept of "modern romantic" based on both our personalities. I'm a modern minimalist who loves clean lines. My FI is a romantic sentimentalist. To celebrate our union, we are combining our styles for a uniquely us look and feel. We will take traditional elements and present them in a clean modern style.
We are thrilled to work with the amazingly talented Amy Burke of Amy Burke Designs. We are using primarily white flowers including: peonies, tulips, orchids, rananuculus, daffodils, and hydrangea. Our whites will be accented with yellows and greys. The flowers will be accented with flowering branches, white and grey feathers, some greenery and lots of candles.
We've found a lot of great ideas on PW and beyond and I've included a few of our inspiration images below. As I started collecting inspiration images way prior to making a bio, please let me know if I've included your image and I will be happy to update with credits. I do apologize!
image credit: martha stewart and stephanie williams
PERSONAL FLOWERS: my bouquet will have all white flowers - open and closed peonies primarily, accented with white or light grey feathers and small accents of green. stems will be wrapped in dark grey ribbon to match my grey pearl jewelry. Bridesmaids will have similar designed bouquets in whites and yellows, slightly smaller using peonies and garden roses; also accented with feathers and gun metal ribbons to match their dresses.
FI will have a simple, modern boutonniere of a white peony accented with fiddlehead fern, china berry, and white feather accent. The groomsmen will have a white garden rose with a canary yellow accent, china berry and white feather. All will be wrapped in gun metal colored ribbons.
CEREMONY DECOR: our outdoor ceremony is hosted on a beautiful lawn with white wood folding chairs. we want a very clean, simple ceremony design using two large, very modern arrangements of white flowering branches on clean, simple gun metal pedestals. Flowers will include white cherry blossoms, pear blossoms, and apple blossoms. A whimsical, scroll patterned runner of white rose petals with yellow accents will form the aisle. The entrance to the ceremony space will be closed off at the center with a gun metal colored satin ribbon. Ushers will seat guests from the sides.
RECEPTION DECOR: Moving into our Ballroom, our design will become a bit more dramatic with two styles of centerpieces and little treatments to provide pops of yellows and greys throughout the room.
COCKTAIL TABLES: Our kiosk tables will be dressed in ivory linens. Small arrangements will be placed on each table using a small silver container with a cluster of bright yellow daffodils or rinniculas.
DINNER TABLES: Half of the tables will feature tall cylindrical glass vases filled with water and completed with a modern arrangement of very tall white flowering branches, with accents of lush white phaleonopsis orchids to bring softness and feminity to the arrangements. Surrounding the top of the vase will be a wide band of gun metal silver satin ribbon with a smaller band of canary yellow satin to offset. Three clear bud vases will surround the tall arrangement with a cluster of bright yellow rinniculas or daffodils and lots of votive candles.
DINNER TABLES: The other half of the tables will consist of low footed silver bowls filled with lush arrangement of white and ivory flowers with accents of bright canary yellow. Our flowers will include hydrangeas, peonies, garden roses, rinniculas, white daffodils, white feathers, and accents of yellow Billy balls. Each arrangement will spill over onto the table and be surrounded by votives.
PLACE SETTING: Each setting will use the charger (as shown in our venue section); a menu (yet to be designed) placed within an ivory napkin (folded as shown above), and accented by a large canary yellow rinnicula placed within the napkin fold.
The theme of our wedding actually stemmed from a photo of a cake I found here on PW. Although I'm not a die hard cake fanatic, our cake really shaped the modern, romantic theme of our wedding. We're having Cheryl Burr of Pinkies Bakery in San Francisco. Cheryl has made several celebration cakes for events I've hosted for personal friends and/or corporate clients. Her cakes are delicious. Sinful actually might be a better description.
We will have two flavors - a decadent devilsfood chocolate with chocolate mousse and a coconut chiffon with vanilla custard.
Picking a dress was extremely stressful for me! I spent a lot of time researching dresses and started out thinking romantic lace in modern, simple a-line gown. I did however follow some very key advice and tried on a variety of styles as it turned out what I wanted wasn't anything like the style I thought I would.
Instead, I found I loved beautiful silk taffeta fabric dresses, cut in a modified a-line or mermaid, with a sweetheart neckline. Something simple without adornment and all the drama in the fabric. I wanted a dress with all the detail and drama in the fabric, cut, and construction. I particularly loved Jenny Lee and Amy Kuschel.
Finding gorgeous dresses that I loved to put on was not a problem at all - finding something that worked with our wedding budget was a little more of a challenge. My favorite stores were Unique Bride and Amy Kuschel.
Amy Kuschel - "Embrace" (but with sweetheart neckline "Embrace II") and Jenny Lee #8011 (but strapless without the decorative jacket shown in the above picture); and the Jenny Lee #607.
I ended up purchasing my dress #607 from Unique Bride in Burlingame and worked with Mary. I n all the excitement of my purchase and first fitting, I forgot to take photos - will make sure to post soon.
Now that we've settled the big ticket items for our modern, romantic wedding, I'm ready to work on some of the fun elements - like our wedding party's style - including mine! During my planning process, I collected quite a few images. Please let me know if any of these are yours so I can give credit!
HAIR: I'd like to do an updo similiar to this style (first photo) - I see it everywhere on PW and I love it! I'll accent with a feather or hair flower piece - exact style TBD but likely something similar to one of these. I am not planning on a veil.
edit: here is a non pro pic of my hair - i loved it. giao was perfect and did an amazing job!
Instead of a veil, I love the idea of a gorgeous updo and a beautiful feather / flower piece instead. I'm having one designed by Giao to be similar to a peony (my signature flower in my bouquet), grey feathers, and some bling in the center to tie in with my jewelry, etc. I just received the photo of the finished product and here it is! I LOVE it!
MAKEUP: I'm looking for natural but with an element of drama - I would love to play up my eyes with a bit more dramatic look and fake lashes of course, and a more natural but glossy lip color.
JEWELRY: My darling FI gave me a beautiful diamond necklace for our first Christmas and beautiful earrings to match for our second Christmas this year so I'll be wearing those at the wedding (similiar photos below). We are making a five strand bracelet (see inspiration photo below) using these amazing grey vintage glass beads I found at a tiny specialty shop on vacation over my birthday. I love the look of the grey with my white dress (inspiration shot below). I'll add grey elements with a custom bracelet, in my hair feather/flower piece, and in the feathers in my bouquet.
edit: here are our photos of our finished DIY vintage glass bead bracelet and my actual diamond earrings and necklace from FI.
SHOES: I originally was looking for a satin open toe style as shown below.
Then I happened upon "kendra" in stormy grey from Kate Spade. I love her - so I had to get them. Following this, while randomly shopping, I also found these super cute strappy graphite shoes from Ralph Lauren. I am most likely wearing the strappy Lauren shoes but it is nice having options!
I fell in love with this adorable clutch but have no idea who makes it or where to find it. If you know, please tell me. I'd love something sweet and simple like this design. I'm sure there will be many more things to add as we finalize the style details for our wedding.
edit: i found this pretty silver clutch and will be using for the wedding.
We have seven bridesmaids all across the country. We wanted a grey color, preferably darker grey and then accent with light grey, yellow and white. Here are two inspiration images. I don't have a source for the first. The second is an image from Stephanie Williams.
We've selected the silk taffeta, in the light pewter, from JCrew. There are approximately 5 dresses in a variety of styles and all the girls will pick their own. We'll add dark grey shoes, custom necklaces, dark grey pashminas, and yellow flowers.
photo credit: JCrew
photo credit: Stella & Dot Jewelry
We debated between tux and suits. In the end, we're going with grey suits, white shirts, and yellow ties. FI is having his suit made. The guys will likely wear their own charcoal grey suit or purchase one. We will buy shirts and ties to match. Ideally we'll also find grey and yellow argyle socks as shown below in our inspiration photo.
We wanted a casual family style Italian menu rehearsal dinner to contrast our formal wedding and to showcase FI's Italian heritage. The design of the room will feature seasonal produce, lots of herbs and artichokes, votives and natural elements - again, very different from the look and feel of the wedding. The nature of the event being casual and family style will help people get to know each other and feel warm and welcomed.
Please find below a bit of inspiration as we design this event.
photo credits: 1) mark brooks photography; 2) thepartydress.com; 5) martha stewart
our menu for the dinner:
family style passed appetizers: bruschetta, polenta pomodoro, and calamari friti
starter: mixed baby greens salad with vinaigrette
pasta course: penne pomodoro or farfalle in a cream sauce with pancetta
entree course: chicken marsala, salmon vino bianco, or ricotta stuffed peppers
dessert course: zabaglione with fresh berries
Our menu will focus on local, sustainable, organic ingredients and has been created under the direction of Executive Chef Peter Rudolph (formerly of the The Campton Place). We are so excited after our tasting to have the following menu items. They are delicious!
Passed Hors d'oeuvres
Grass Fed Beef Slider, Fiscalini Cheddar
Gruyere Grilled Cheese, Spicy Tomato Sauce
Dungeness Crab Roll, Watercress, Japanese Seven Spice, Wasabi Creme Fraiche
Crispy Tempura Shrimp, Togarashi, Yuzu Aioli
Butter Poached Lobster, Celery Root Puree, Crispy Asparagus Salad with Meyer Lemon
Mache Salad with Rhubarb Puree, Hazelnuts, Point Reyes Blue Cheese and Champagne Vinaigrette
Roasted Alaskan Halibut, Asparagus, Green Garlic Sauce, Bearnaise, Potato Chips
Beef Tenderloin, Potato Puree, Fricasse of Carrots, Peas, Turnips and Radish
Chocolate devilsfood cake with chocolate mousse or coconut chiffon wedding cake
Late Night Menu
A custom taco bar with carnitas, duck confit, and chicken accompanied by guacamole, cilantro, lime, salsa, cheese, rice, and beans
Selection of sparkling waters, sodas, ice tea, hot tea and coffee service
Selection of local, domestic, and imported beers
Segura Viudas Brut Reserva Cava Penedes
Miner Family Viognier "Simpson Vineyard
Finca Decero Malbec Remolinos Vineyard
Selection of domestic and imported beers
Full bar service with the following specialty drinks:
- "Marry Me-ito" -- Pineapple Mint Lime Fusion Mojito (I love mojitos)
- "Hank's Refresher" -- Greyhound with pink grapefruit juice (our dog is a greyhound so this was only fitting)
- "Bill-hattan" -- Manhattan (FI's favorite)
- "Krystarita" -- Margarita with mango, lime, chili-sugar-salt rim
Yay! The honeymoon is booked! We are spending 14 days in Fiji at the Matangi Island Resort! So excited!
FI was raised Catholic and I was not. FI and I wanted to combine both of our religions together for an inclusive, outdoor ceremony that was personal and meaningful. We did a lot of research and came across the White Robed Monks. FI reached out and connected with Father Patrick Bellami. We recently met with him to discuss our ceremony and our preferences and so enjoyed the opportunity to create our ceremony together. Father Bellami listened to our ideas and matched a ceremony outline with our preferences and personalities. I've copied the text below if it is helpful to anyone else trying to plan a personal, religious ceremony that is inclusive of different religions. We still haven't picked our reading or music selections and I'll update as we fill in the details.
PRAYER BEFORE MARRIAGE
O: In the Name of the Father, The Son, and the Holy Spirit, Amen. Lord God, source all love, your providence has brought us together. As we prepare for the sacrament of marriage we pray for your grace, that, strengthened by your blessing, we may grow in respect for one another and cherish each other with a sincere love. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
O: Friends, we are gathered here today to witness the marriage of K and B. Let us call upon God to be with us today as we celebrate this union of two into one. Please, let us remember that a wedding ceremony is an outward form. To be true, it must be a symbol of something inner and real: a sacred personal union which nature might mirror, a priest might solemnize, or a state declare legal, but which only love can create and mutual loyalty fulfill.
The union of husband and wife in heart, body, and mind is intended by God for their mutual joy; for the help and comfort given one another in prosperity and adversity; and, when it is God's will, for the creation of children and their nurturing in the knowledge and love of the Lord. Therefore, marriage is not to be entered into unadvisedly or lightly; but reverently, deliberately, and in accordance with the purposes for which it was instituted by God.
Turning to K and B: You ask what is this love we here affirm, and I answer, it is a covenant you make, one with the other, a covenant born of commitment to each other's well being and growth and commitment to your relationship itself, allowing it the possibility of change and of growth.
Almighty God, hear our prayers for K and B who have come here today to be united in the sacrament of Marriage. Increase their faith in you and in each other, and through them bless your church. Make their love fruitful so that they may be living witnesses to your divine love in the world. We ask this through our Lord, Jesus Christ, your Son, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, forever and ever.
READING (To be decided)
O: B and K, you have come together here today so that the Lord may seal and strengthen your love in the presence of this community of your family and friends. Christ abundantly blesses this love. He has already consecrated you in baptism and now enriches and strengthens you by a special sacrament so that you may assume the duties of marriage in mutual and lasting fidelity. In this way you will be strengthened to keep mutual and lasting faith with each other and to carry out the other duties of marriage. And so, in the presence of this community of your family and friends I ask you to state your intentions.
O: Who gives this bride to be married to this man?
Parents: We do.
O: K and B, have you come here freely and without reservation to give yourselves to each other in marriage?
K and B: We do.
O: Will you love and honor each other as husband and wife for the rest of your lives?
K and B: We will.
O: Will you accept children lovingly and bring them up according to the Law of Love?
K and B: We will.
O: Since it is your intention to enter into marriage, with your hands joined declare your consent before God and this community of your family and friends.
O: Repeat after me:
I, B, take you K to be my wife. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love and honor you all the days of my life.
I, K, take you B to be my husband. I promise to be true to you in good times and in bad, in sickness and in health. I will love and honor you all the days of my life.
BLESSING AND EXCHANGE OF RINGS
Holding up a ring for all to see, the priest says:
O: You have determined that you would seal your vows today by the exchanging of rings. The rings you give and receive this day are marvelous symbols of endless love. The rings are made of gold, a symbol of purity. May your thoughts towards one another be pure. The ring is an unbroken circle, having no end, so it is emblematic of the enduring and unending love you have for each other.
With hands extended over the rings, he says:
Lord, bless + and consecrate K and B in their love for each other. May these rings be a symbol of true faith they share in each other and always remind them of their love. We ask this through Christ our Lord. Amen.
Priest sprinkles the rings with Holy Water.
B places his wife's ring on her finger. He says: K, take this ring as a sign of my love, and fidelity. I give this ring in remembrance of this
hour, a symbol of love that is beautiful, endless and complete.
K places the ring on her husband's finger. She says: B, take this ring as a sign of my love, and fidelity. I give this ring in remembrance of this hour, a symbol of love that is beautiful, endless and complete.
READING (To be decided)
MUSICAL INTERLUDE (To be determined)
PRESENTATION OF FLOWERS
O: K and B would like to thank and acknowledge those who are not able to attend today, in particular B’s dad, William, who is undoubtedly watching from above. They would like to thank and acknowledge their mothers by presenting them with a rose. This rose, which signifies the unfolding beauty of life, honors the life given to them through the love and sacrifice of these two women and to the beauty of their lives. We can see and feel them warming and illuminating our midst as reflected in the love of these two young people.
K and B take a rose and K presents to B’ mother, and B presents to K’s mother.
The priest moves forward and addresses the guests:
O: It is said that a marriage is larger than just the couple. As B and K have asked you, their most cherished family and friends to gather here today to witness their commitment of love, I now charge you with responsibility to become part of their larger family, and in the days, months and years ahead to give them the love and support that a true family gives.
O: I now ask all assembled here: Will you all give your love and support to K and B, both now as they start their new life together, as well as in the years to come?
R: We will
O: Lord God, we ask You to smile upon this family made of love. They are united as one, and so we ask for Your Blessings so that as they travel upon the road of Life they may have Your guidance. We pray that this family and all the friends gathered here in Your name will grow and prosper in the Spirit of Love.
O: K and B, you have now affirmed before your families and friends your love and your caring for each other. You have come from different backgrounds. You have walked different paths. You are different individuals. Your love has transcended these differences. In the years before you, may the richness of the traditions that have nurtured you enhance and brighten your lives as you help to create and shape the future.
May you learn from your failures and grow in your achievements. May life bless you with children, friends, and family in a wide network of mutual support and enjoyment. May you face life’s challenges with a stout but light heart. May you share with others the radiance of your seasons of joy and pleasure. May you always remember that laughter is the medicine of God.
My dear friends, let us turn to the Lord and pray that he will bless with his grace this woman K, now married in Christ to this man B, and that He will unite in love the couple He has joined in this Holy Bond.
The priest joins the right hands of K and B and says:
Now that B and K have given themselves to each other by solemn vows, with the joining of hands and the giving and receiving of a ring, by the authority vested in me by the State of California, and as a servant of God, I pronounce that they are husband and wife. What has been joined together here, let no human being separate.
O: You may now kiss the bride.
O: My dear friends, it is my pleasure to introduce you to Mr. & Mrs. LastName