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Tented Beauty in Paso Robles

This wedding, from the Anna half of Michael & Anna Costa Photography, is such a beaut. It’s sun-drenched and whole heartedly glamorous in that blush pink, classic tent overlooking a beautiful view sort of way with pretty, pastel blooms by Camilla Svensson Burns, design and coordination by Percy Sales Events and a gallery overflowing with pretty. See even more right here.


From the Bride… Looking back, I’m a little embarrassed that I didn’t dress up more. It was my close friend’s Super Bowl party, so what was the need? Little did I know my life would change forever after that Sunday. When I arrived I was greeted by many familiar faces. I settled in to watch the game, but mostly chat with my girlfriends. I noticed the unfamiliar face walk in immediately. I was introduced to Tom by an old friend telling me Tom was his newly single roommate. He smiled and casually introduced himself to the group. He was cute, really cute. But as quickly as he said hello, he quietly slipped out of the circle. “Well, so much for talking to the cute guy,” I thought. For the rest of the game, our only interactions were when we shimmied past each other in the hallway or chatting with the group. However, at some point, and sadly I can’t remember exactly how, what was a group of five or six telling stories about their weekend, Tom and I were left alone talking and laughing. I was shocked. I wasn’t shocked that we were speaking directly to each other; I was shocked at how comfortable I was talking to him. I went from hanging out with five of my lifelong friends to speaking to someone I’d only know a few minutes and yet somehow I felt like I had known him my whole life. We did the predictable background Q&A and quickly discovered that we grew up less than 15 minutes from each other, had countless friends in common and shared numerous interests. Sadly, as great as the conversation was going, my ride was leaving so I said it was nice to meet him and gave him a moment to ask for my number. He promptly filled the moment with, “It was nice to meet you too. Hope you get home safe.” With that, Tom walked away. Needless to say I was disappointed and immediately blamed my casual Super Bowl attire. Like any party, leaving isn’t fast. My thoughts of disappointment were erased with an, “Umm, hey,” from behind. I turned to see Tom standing there. In a cute, but nervous voice he said “Umm, so do you want to hang out sometime?” I played it cool, “Sure”. Tom let out a great big smile but in a sarcastic tone, which I would grow to love, replied with, “Well, how about I give you my number, that way when you change your mind you don’t have to deal a weird stalker?”

Over the next week Tom and I exchanged text messages and set up a time for our first date the following Monday. We met at a bar in West Los Angeles at 6pm for a few drinks, because we both had work the next day. Before I knew it, my stomach was sore from laughing and the bar was closing. Our first date flew by in an instant much like the next four years of our lives. We spent holidays together, took vacations together, and eventually moved to San Francisco together. As is true for most adults in their late 20s, life is hectic. Our one spot to slow down was Tom’s family’s ranch in Paso Robles, Spring Ranch. Tom grew up spending weekends and summers on the ranch and showed me his deep love of it. Growing up a country fan, this was a match made in heaven and I quickly shared his deep seeded love for the ranch. It was on the ranch where Tom proposed to me, and on the ranch where we held our wedding reception.

With over a year to plan, Tom and I wanted to be meticulous with every step we took. It was a no-brainer choosing Spring Ranch as our venue for the reception, as it was such a special place for us and Tom’s family had hosted numerous weddings and events there. However, beyond that we were unsure. After doing extensive research and meeting with multiple wedding coordinators we were ecstatic when Percy Sales agreed to be our coordinator. The foundation of his vision was the same as ours, yet he brought so much experience and creativity that he was able to create something far more incredible than we could have dreamt. Everything Percy organized met our wish of an elegant country wedding. From the food, flowers and music to the table settings, lighting and countless other details; it was an absolute dream.

With the day upon us, guests boarded shuttles in Paso Robles for a short ride through wine country to a small and stunning chapel located on the neighboring ranch. The chapel was perched on top of a hill overlooking fields of wheat and grape vines. The ceremony featured a small string quartet and was held early in the evening as temperatures in May can be quite high. After the ceremony our guests boarded the waiting shuttles for a quick ten minute drive up the canyon to Spring Ranch.

Upon arrival to the reception location, our guests were greeted by the ranch’s horses grazing next to the shuttle drop-off. We wanted our cocktail hour to have a strong country theme. We were fortunate enough to book the SLOPokes, a great, local bluegrass band to perform for our guests. As the sun was setting our guests proceeded to our tented and beautifully lit dining area followed by our entrance. After an amazing meal featuring local fare, the real party began. Urged on by the amazing band, The Wonder Bread 5, we all danced long into the evening. Besides the incredible country views one of the great things Spring Ranch offers is no curfew. With dinner not starting until 8:30 the band didn’t take the stage until 10:00 and played for two hours. After the band stopped a DJ continued as the first shuttle departed. We danced and drank until our last bus departed at 1am. For late night snacks we featured mini sliders, French fries and grass-fed Spring Ranch beef jerky. Throughout this amazing evening our incredible photographer, Anna Costa, subtly managed to be in the right place at the right time to capture every special moment. Her work was priceless as the evening was so incredible that it flew bye in a flash.

Since our May 2013 wedding, Tom and I have moved back down to the Pasadena area, adopted a dog, purchased a house and began new jobs. No matter how much things have changed since we first met four years ago, we still often find ourselves at 2am with aching smiles and asking what happened to the last 8 hours? Our dog thinks we’re crazy.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Anna Costa | Event Planning: Percy Sales Events | Floral Design: Camilla Svensson Burns | Cake: Decadence | Catering: Tamara's Catering | Hair & Makeup: Twist Studios | Lighting: LBPS Events | Band: Wonder Bread 5 | Blue Grass Band: SLOpokes | Bridal Transportation: Crown Limousines | Church: Chapel On The Hill | Coordination: Percy Sales | Ranch: Spring Ranch | Rentals: The Tent Merchant | Shuttles: American Star Trailways

LBPS Events, Inc. and Michael + Anna Costa Photography are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
LBPS Events

Michael & Anna Costa Photograp...

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{ The latest from our most exclusive, hand-picked list of vendors }
Boho Brooklyn Engagement

It took about two seconds into this engagement shoot for me to realize we had our hands on something special. I’m talking blooms from Pollen Floral Design and photography by Brumley and Wells…or in other words, the dream team. They took to the rooftops of Brooklyn for a boho chic love sesh, and the gallery is proof that #WeddingWednesday is going to be soooo good.

From Brumley & Wells… Zach and Tara’s styled engagement shoot was such a dream thanks to the craftsmanship and artistry of Boston Pollen, who created the floral arrangements and dip-dyed the dress and fabric. Brooklyn provided the perfect backdrop for with its quintessential views of Manhattan and it’s grungy, vibrant streets, a perfect fit for this Greenpoint couple.

Photography: Brumley And Wells | Floral Design: Pollen Floral Design

Brumley & Wells is a member of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
Brumley & Wells

Ojai Resort Outdoor Wedding

I once wrote in an interview that my dream wedding would feel like a dinner party. Twinkle lights in the trees, dancing to the classic. Good food, great wine and a sense of family built into every detail. And this wedding, is that dream…personified. With photography by Erich McVey, design & planning by XOXO Bride and florals by Kelly Kaufman, this wedding is everything. More right here.


From the bride…When we took our first day trip to the Ojai Valley Inn, we didn’t realize how lucky that choice was at the time. We decided to get married there for nostalgia’s sake, along with wanting to be slightly out of town, and from that moment on the wedding we didn’t know we had dreamt of started falling into place. Enough can’t be said about the staff there, incredibly attentive and not only two steps ahead of us during the planning and on the day, but more importantly, two steps in the direction we wanted to go.

We found our wedding coordinator, Sonia Hopkins, through the Inn, and from the minute I said, “I dunno, like Downton Abby at an outdoor picnic,” she turned a mirage of an idea into an amazing reality. We wanted elegant but not stuffy, refined but relaxed. So we set a gorgeous table then served the meal in French service fashion, with the sides on the table family style.

We built the colors off of the natural beauty of the Herb Garden, greens and whites, sprinkled with lavender and peach. As we are both from English heritage, we stayed with that theme as we jumped out of the box with our band, The Brit Pack, who played all British music ranging from the Beatles to Led Zeppelin. As fun to work with as they were to listen to, we are still getting asked where we found them.

Lastly, our photographer, Erich McVey, gave us the perfect pictures to remember our perfect day. But the best thing about Erich and his wife is that, even though they were there, they still made that special “just married” time between the ceremony and reception feel like it was only the two of us. Our wedding was more than we could have ever thought possible, all from one very lucky choice to take a drive one day to Ojai.

Photography: Erich McVey Photography | Floral Design: Kelly Kaufman | Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Bakery: Ojai Valley Inn And Spa | Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Monique Lhuillier | Hair & Makeup: 1011 Makeup | Lighting: Town And Country | Cocktail Music: Anthony Ybarra | Event Design & Planning: XOXO Bride | Music: Elan Artists | Rentals 1: La Tavola | Rentals 2: Tent Merchant | Rentals 3: Town And Country | Rentals 4: Casa De Perrin | Rentals 5: Archive Rentals | Venue: Ojai Valley Inn And Spa | Wedding Venue: Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

Monique Lhuillier is a member of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here. La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, XOXO BRIDE, Erich McVey Photography, Ojai Valley Inn & Spa and Casa de Perrin are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
La Tavola Fine Linen Rental


Erich McVey Photography

Ojai Valley Inn & Spa

Casa de Perrin

Paper Pairings from Wedding Paper Divas
There’s no better way to set the tone for your wedding day than with a stunning invitation suite. Whether you’re going modern, classic or whimsical, Wedding Paper Divas has you seriously covered. We’ve teamed up to share some fabulous wedding themes + paper pairings that are sure to inspire.
Paper Pairings from Wedding Paper Divas
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Completing your perfect paper suite is easy as pie, thanks to Wedding Paper Divas. With accessories such as wrap around labels, stickers, programs and insert cards, you’ll be able to continue your style from invitation through day of goodies!
Wedding Paper Divas has a huge collection of stunning + affordable options, making it incredibly easy to find the perfect fit for you and your honey. With options for personalization of colors, fonts, layouts, trims and so much more, you can make whatever design you choose totally you.
To get started with your very own on-trend wedding invitations, head over here!
Wedding Paper Diva Invites: Classic Romance: Luscious Lacing | Rustic Chic: Breathtaking Blooms | Married to Modern: We Do Wed | Perfectly Preppy: Gilded Romance | Whimsical Wedding: Lavish Laurel