Most of you girls (and boys) know Jackie Wonders because of the awesome DIY projects that she’s helped craft for SMP. You know, those fabulous fabric yo-yo’s and the super cool book table numbers (that you can see if you sign up for our newsletter, hint hint). But Jackie also happens to be the photographer behind some pretty fabulous weddings and lucky for us, we finally got our grubby little hands on one of them so you could see just how good she is. And the wedding? Beyond. DIY done so SO right. Click here to see even more.

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

san diego wedding

click here to see the full wedding gallery!

I loved my courtship with Aaron. We spent hours together in coffee shops, regular wanderings through Balboa Park, many picnics and frequent trips to nearby wineries. Everything about it was so “us.” I loved Aaron’s proposal. It was a modern-day treasure hunt that included games (my all-time favorite pastime!), some of our dearest friends, a coffee shop, three of the best parks in San Diego, Aaron’s favorite bottle of wine and a Polaroid camera. Five hours later I had the best treasure of all – my future husband. Naturally, we were quite swept away by engagement and consequently, had little concern about when our marriage would actually take place. We didn’t really care so long as we were together. {Swoon.} My parents came to visit one week into our engagement. By the time they left San Diego, our wedding was nearly planned: the time frame was nailed down and we had a list of our favorite vendors. We were engaged and married within 5 months. Exactly. TO.THE.DAY.

With very little time, hectic work and school schedules and a ton of ideas – think Anthropologie’s whimsy minus the budget – we had quite an adventure ahead of us.  And we were certain of one thing: this wedding had to be “us.” Enter D.I.Y. projects. After we chose colors, which was an all-day process for us, I created an inspiration board. {Nerd alert! I’m not a designer. I’m not a wedding planner. But I am organized!} Being the queen of indecisiveness, I needed something to keep me on track and that did the trick. We knew where we were heading. Vintage. Fanciful. Colorful. Celebration! And honestly, other than knowing that your groom is thee man you want to experience life with, my biggest recommendation for brides is to create an inspiration board.

Because I love cool paper stuff, invitations were really important to me. My BFF and matron of honor is the lovely creator of Smitten Stationery and after several late nights, we came up with an invitation suite that was nothing short of extraordinary. Let me start by saying that they were backed with the most beautiful fabric you’ve ever seen. Yes. Fabric! And we used vintage stamps and included a folded map. (I heart real maps.) Just thinking about those invitations makes me excited all over again. Tara, the genius behind Smitten Stationery, covered every paper detail for the wedding – from the “Just Married” bunting to the signs on the dessert table.

Now, as for the wedding details, we were all about those three beloved letters…D.I.Y. Oh, how I love you! Oh, how I hate you! Because we love wine and we love the outdoors, we decided to have our ceremony and reception at picturesque Orfila Vineyards and Winery.  That left us with an incredible view and a ginormous white plastic tent.  White plastic didn’t really suit us. We thought that pom-poms would warm up the place and after checking prices for tissue paper on nashvillewraps.com, we convinced ourselves that the 5,500 square foot tent was pom-pom worthy. This D.I.Y. project had the possibility of easily becoming a wedding nightmare. We were in over our heads. Luckily, we have incredible friends who were willing to lend a hand. 408 pom-poms and a few paper cuts later, the ceiling of our tent was draped in yellow.

And my mom was a lifesaver. She flew into town to help with our D.I.Y. projects. (If you knew her, you’d love her as much as I do.) She turned our paper-butterfly-string idea into a reality. One of my favorite projects was the ribbon wands that she helped make by using dowel rods and ribbons with a variety of colors and textures. Style Me Pretty has a great D.I.Y. on these beauties.

At our reception, we had old classic romantic films playing in the background. People played croquette on one of the side lawns during the cocktail hour. Some of our dear friends built a photo booth for us to use as part of our guest book.  The instant photos are a hilarious keepsake and it’s such a treat to have personalized photos of all the guests. People used typewriters to write notes to us. The notes we got were rather brief, very jumbled, and yet completely endearing. One of our favorite notes mentioned how cool it was to be “tweeting old school.”

The desserts were made with love by one of our friends who is known for her ability to bake anything and everything amazingly well. When she and Aaron attended the same church, she brought goodies every Sunday to share with the whole church. Now that’s what I call Christian love! Anyway, Aaron and I aren’t big cake people so we wanted to do something different for our wedding. We just couldn’t picture a big elaborate white cake at our reception. We really wanted fun and fresh desserts for our big day and that’s exactly what we got. From the fruit tart to the matcha cake, people had a variety of unique dessert choices.  A favorite family recipe was even included – my grandmother Peg’s infamous pecan pie!

There are so many things that I loved about our wedding. I walked down the aisle to a Coldplay song. We said our own vows. That was really scary but totally worth the scariness. We used a handmade sewing kit as a board for escort cards, which featured my mom’s wooden spools and old buttons. Creatively, we did every single thing that we wanted to do.  I love that despite the planning process, we never strayed from focusing on our marriage. More than anything, I was thrilled that people told us over and again that our wedding was undeniably “us.”


Location: Orfila Vineyards & Winery / Officiant: Pastor Leo from Mission Valley Christian Fellowship / Photography: Jackie Wonders / Cinematography: Kristian Roque / Invitations and Save the Dates:  Smitten Stationery / Floral Design: Simply Adina Florals / Groomsmen suits: H&M / Groom’s suit: Theory  / Bride’s gown: Blue by Enzoani from 2000 Dreams Bridal / Bridesmaid dresses: Urban Outfitters / Feather Hair Pieces: Lo Boheme / Caterer: Culinary Concepts / Band: The Heroes

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