Vow Renewals by Joel Serrato, Jose Villa + Jill La Fleur
June 7, 2010

To me, there is something so magical about renewing your vows. I tied the knot when I was 25 years old and although it was and will always be the most incredibly meaningful day of my life, I think that time and the chaos of life often make the words fade away a bit. Plus, you get to wear a pretty dress again and have a great reason to throw a gorgeous party. Oh and the romance. Ahhh, the romance. Well, Jill La Fleur and her cute husband decided to do just that and our favorite filmmaker, Joel Serrato was on hand to shoot the entire day. Brace yourself for this...tears are a given.

And how's this for lucky. Jill's GUEST Jose Villa, was gracious enough to capture her day on camera. I guess that being a fabulous wedding planner in Southern California has its perks. Jose's photographs are beyond...beyond romantic, beyond beautiful, beyond art. And as usual, I have a little bit of a crush on both Jose and Joel after seeing all of this gorgeousness...

vow renewal

vow renewal

vow renewal

vow renewal

From Jill La Fleur...

Long before vow renewals became the new trendy thing for every Celebrity in Hollywood, my husband and I decided when we first got married that it would be a special, romantic idea to renew our wedding vows every 5 years. I don’t know how we came up with that number, but it sounded good to us at the time, and since we struggled with the location of our first wedding, we thought how much fun would it be to get married at a new location and have another wedding, another party, another dress, (and let’s be real…another honeymoon!) every 5 years?! And I am a Wedding Planner afterall!

The 5 years went by so quickly, as can happen in new marriages when you are straddled with careers, kids, finances, mortgages, life…..and you can lose sight of the romance and the spark that first brought you to the point of saying “I Do.” The pending vow renewal became another task in our lives to have to attend to, and yet as the day grew closer, we decided we needed to take some time out to plan. I took out our old photos, our wedding box of memories and was amazed at the emotions that were suddenly flooding back in my life. I read our old wedding vows we hand-wrote to one another, including the one my son wrote to us (as this was a second marriage for me). The tears came to my eyes and I became so excited about the day ahead. My husband didn’t realize until he was repeating his vows to me again after 5 years, making that commitment one more time to one another, how special and even more meaningful a vow renewal could be to a marriage.

Our first wedding took place on the island of Maui, where we first lived, met and fell in love. Our vow renewal ceremony was held at one of our favorite wineries in the Santa Ynez Valley, where we now live,  Roblar Winery in their greenhouse (which is rarely used for events, but I just loved!), and the reception was held at Dos Carlitos (the halibut ceviche and mojitos were a hit!) and I bought coconut cupcakes from Enjoy Cupcakes in honor of our Hawaiian ties, and had them individually boxed for our guests to take home with them. Jon Ireland, one of my all-time favorite people, officiated it for us and it was so personal and perfect, as he knew us personally so well! My husband couldn't stop from crying...again! My dear friend, the talented Mindy Rice, created a beautiful bouquet for me with my favorite flowers (lilacs) and flowers for my mom, husband and son (who wore his on his hat! Too cool for words!) My amazing friends Jose Villa and Joel Serrato, were invited as guests but also took the most amazing photos and created the most beautiful, moving film of the day as a gift to us! I still cry every time I look at these! They make my husband and I fall in love all over again every time!

Every one of my guests that attended (as well as those couples I tell the story to) decided that they too now want to renew their vows as they were all just so moved and touched by the day! They want to feel that love that they felt on their wedding day all over again too and saw how renewing your wedding vows can bring that all back and add even more to deepen a marriage! And when my husband and I checked into our hotel room that night, it was like our first honeymoon night all over again! I can’t recommend it enough!

Thank you to everyone that helped make this such a special and memorable day for us. I am so lucky to have such loving, talented friends! Looking forward to our 10 year in Mexico!

xoxo, Jill La Fleur