This next little number is pure ballroom bliss. The rich, purple palette, the lace details, the traditional styling with hints of total chic. Photographed by Jennifer Dery at the Four Seasons in Aviara, California…this is ballroom at its best. And don’t forget, we’re just featuring snippets today so if you’ve fallen in love with this uber elegant style, click here to see even more!

ballroom wedding

ballroom wedding

ballroom wedding

ballroom wedding

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On June 13, 2009, I married Stephen Tee. The ceremony was held at St. Elizabeth Seton’s in Carlsbad, CA; and the reception was held at Four Seasons Aviara (now Park Hyatt Aviara). While our wedding was over a year ago, I still think about the day all the time, which I think is a testament to the wedding being just what Steve and I wanted.

If I had to sum up our wedding in one sentence, here’s what I’d say: Our wedding was a dream of purples, lace, Italy, and love. Looking back at our wedding, there are so many things I hope to forever and always remember . . .

Like every bride, I wanted to feel beautiful on my wedding day. And, I found a dress that sealed the deal. The champagne-esque color was spectacular, and it had just the right amount of lace (can’t say enough about the detachable lace bolero!). I also wanted my girlfriends to feel beautiful; of course, my fear of things being “matchy matchy” led to three separate dresses for my maids (and an “order” that they accessorize to their hearts’ content.

Of course, there was the “something borrowed” — the pearls on my wrist, a memento from my Grammy who passed well over a decade ago. There was the “something blue” — the aquamarine earrings, a gift from my father to my mother (and then from my mother to me). There was the “something new” — my perfect purple pumps that actually were comfortable the whole day through and through.

Our wedding included little bits of Italy as a tribute to my father’s heritage. The table numbers featured quotes about love in Italian and English, as did our ceremony program, menu cards and party favors. All of the table tops also were decorated with unique flower arrangements — I spent months collecting cream vases with gold accents. However, it was definitely worth the time spent combing flea markets and antique shops! Our florist could not have done a better job capturing the style I envisioned for the wedding . . . just classic romanticism with a bit of vintage heart.

All of the food was absolutely delicious (thank you to the Four Seasons!), but I must say how enamored we were with the cake. We selected two flavors — tiramisu and chocolate banana (my personal favorite). And, the band made it a party that people were talking about for weeks.

What I learned about weddings, through my own, is that you can make them as complicated or as simple as you want. I like to think that we landed somewhere in the middle. My work kept me from becoming a total Type A, OCD bride . . . I simply didn’t have time to obsess! But, our vendors helped us add just the right amount of detail to the event. What can I say other than it was magic!

Photography: Jennifer Dery / Flowers: Isari Flower Studio / Event Design & Planning: Lisa Lippe at Details Defined and Kelly Smorzewski at Four Seasons Aviara / Ceremony Location: St. Elizabeth Seton (Carlsbad, CA) / Reception Location: Four Seasons Aviara (Carlsbad, CA) / Invitations: Love At First Invite / Shoes: Pura Lopez / Dress: Paloma Blanca

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