Santa Barbara is sort of my happy place. Though I’ve never been there. But sitting in my chilly, snowed-in Boston office, Santa Barbara just seems like warmth and happiness and everything beautiful in the world. And I’m pretty sure that if the universe is listening, it will pick up my house and move it right plop in the center of this little slice of heaven. Hmm, you’re probably right. Next best thing? Living vicariously through a Santa Barbara wedding as pretty as this one and the inspiring photography of our sweet friend Lacie Hansen. Then soaking up the incredible, is-this-real-life? film by one of our besties and cinema genius, Joel Serrato and of course, hitting up the galleries for far more lovely.
From the Bride… Brandon and I met the night of my 28th birthday through a mutual friend at a bar in West Hollywood. Just as we walked in, he happened to be standing right there, and worked with one of my best friends. There, we were introduced, however, I was out with a gaggle of girlfriends and meeting a guy was the last thing on my mind! He did manage to get my number and asked me to dinner for the following week. The hostess on our first date told us that “we were a very cute couple.” We never looked back.
Our wedding was just over a year later on June 9, 2012 at the Four Seasons Biltmore in Santa Barbara, California. Having grown up just north of Santa Barbara in the Santa Ynez Valley, that hotel has always been one of my favorite spots and was special to us as it was the location of our first weekend getaway together. We knew we wanted the wedding to feel very romanitic and warm with a touch of easy elegance. We also played off of the classic Spanish architecture of the hotel. The ceremony was interfaith with a Rabbi and Minister who worked perfectly together. We loved taking traditions from both Jewish and Episcopalian religions. The ceremony was held on the beautiful Monte Vista Lawn surrounded by palm trees and gorgeous views of the Santa Ynez Mountains. The bridesmaids wore coral, blush or champange dresses and chose their own style by the same designer. I definitely wanted them to do what they wanted and wear what they loved! During cocktail hour in the Palmera Garden, guests sipped on some of our favorite snacks and refreshments including fresh blood orange margaritas, vodka gimlets dusted with mini gold stars, and little patron bottles filled with homemade margaritas, and accompanied by bit sized tacos.
We then moved into the Loggia Ballroom decorated with an abundance of peonies, cabbage roses, hydrageas, viburnum and dahlias, hundreds of twinkling candles, and a soft glowing fire in the fireplace. The tables were of various shapes and sizes and shared hues of blush and champagne, with pops of coral and hints of gold. The 12 piece band was incredible, specializing in Motown, but playing everything from Foster the People to Van Morrison to Madonna. After the dinner and dancing, Brandon and I exited under a trail of sparklers, and led the way across the street to the Mardis Gras themed after-party at the ocean-front Coral Casino. There, our guests donned boas, beads and masks, and dined on sliders, mini shakes and fries while dancing away to a DJ spinning tunes into the wee hours. Some guests even woke up in the sand to the sunrise! The day and night could not have been more perfect. By far, the most special moments were being around all of our best friends and family, spending the day getting ready with my bridesmaids and mother, walking down the aisle on the arm of my father, and most of all, marrying the most wonderful man and the love of my life.
Wedding Photography: Lacie Hansen Photography / Wedding Venue + Catering + Cakes: Santa Barbara Four Seasons Biltmore in Santa Barbara, California (Ceremony : Monte Vista Lawn + Reception: Loggia Ballroom) / After Party: Santa Barbara Four Seasons Coral Casino / Wedding Planning: Liz Brown of Central Coast Memory Makers / Event + Floral Design: Kate Holt of Flowerwild / Wedding Cinematography: Joel Serrato Films / Ceremony Officiants: Rabbi Arthur Rosenberg and Reverend Gary Dickey / Wedding Stationery: Crane & Co. + Letter Perfect / Ceremony, Cocktail + Reception Band: Side Effect (West Coast Music) / After Party DJ: Everett Wong / Party Favors: Mother of the Bride’s Homemade Strawberry Preserves / Wedding Dress:”Emma” Dress by Monique Lhuillier / Bride’s Veil: Monique Lhuillier / Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale (Champagne, Coral + Blush – various silhouettes) / Hair: Michelle Mason / Makeup: TEAM Hair and Makeup / Groomsmen Suits: “Ludlow” by J.Crew / Linens: La Tavola Linen
Amsale, J.Crew and Monique Lhuillier are members of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here.