The Villa San Juan Capistrano immediately shot to the top of my love list once I opened up this wedding by Benj Haisch. It’s a magical little venue that has the feel of a backyard wedding; except this faux backyard has been completely infused with glamour. We’re talking lucite chiavari chairs, architecture dripping in ivy and a Mr. and Mrs. dressed to the nines. And that, my friends, is how California does glamour. See even more right here in the full gallery and a great film by Artisan Productions below.

From the Bride… The day I went to meet Eric at The Villa, it was a gorgeous sunny day and he had music playing throughout the space and his little dog was laying in the sun. He was so warm and natural, and I remember thinking right away, this is the place. This is the vibe I want to feel on my wedding day. The venue inspired so much of the styling process. There was abundant light filtering through the canopy of trees and bouncing off the white walls of the house. I wanted everything to feel light and ethereal like the venue did.

I started the styling process by creating a color story. I chose shades of mint with blush and champagne mixed in, and a pop of hot pink here and there. The bridesmaid dresses were from Dolly Pearl. Her dresses are whimsical and fun with flowing fabrics and unique, flattering cuts. They worked for my girls who were at all stages of motherhood, from newborns to my sister and maid of honor who was over 8 months pregnant. Trinh at Bella Bridesmaid in Corona Del Mar fitted them for the dresses and was so helpful throughout the process. I wanted my niece Olivia to wear tulle, and so I found Whitney and her Etsy Shop Little Dreamers who made a custom mint tulle dress. She felt like a princess all day. The groomsmen wore custom made light grey summer suits, and I had bow ties made for them as well in my color story. I love the vintage vibe of a bow tie and suit. It was so important to me what the wedding party wore, as they were such an integral element of the day as walking decor and as our biggest support system!

As an artist by trade, I wanted originality in every detail, a true handmade feel, which is why I did so much myself. I think the process of designing and decorating your wedding day is one that every bride should participate in with her own hands. It makes the day that much more special for you, and your guests can feel that you touched everything with your own special point of view. I loved making the place cards with washes of gauche for color and then writing each person’s name that would be there on our special day. It took lots of time to do which I appreciated because I could focus on each person for a moment while I wrote their name. I set up a basket of vintage pagodas and umbrellas (rented from Bella Umbrella) at the entrance because I knew it would be a hot August day. The colors were amazing in the sun when my guests opened them up. My favorite thing was the way my guests found their seat. I painted a door mint and hung vintage keys from it that I collected from ebay and antique shops over our engagement. I hand wrote each guests name on a tag and attached it to each key. When they took the keys to the tables they acted as table decor and looked great.

Overall, the best thing about our wedding day by far was our ceremony. That is what it was all about for us and what we focused on. Nick’s older brother and father of our ring bearer and flower girl married us. It was the best decision we made. He met with us many times prior and talked with us about what marriage is like and what it means. He is family so he really took it to heart, and cared so much about our union. We said our own vows which I loved so much. I’ll never forget what I promised Nick and what he promised to me in his own words. It was perfect. I was laughing and crying all day long- it was the happiest I have ever been in my entire life. Nick and I literally felt like we were walking on clouds the entire day.

Wedding Photography: Benj Haisch / Wedding Venue: The Villa San Juan Capistrano, in San Juan Capistrano, California / Wedding Planning: Michelle McGregor / Floral Design: Floral Occasions / Wedding Cinematography: Artisan Productions / Wedding Catering: Iva Lee’s Catering / Wedding Dress: Jorge Manuel / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Dolly Pearl / Stationery: Ladyfingers Letterpress