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Natural Santa Ynez Vineyard Engagement

No one – and I mean no one – captures the sheer bliss of a soon-to-be married couple like Joel Serrato. He’s got a way with photo storytelling, and Molly and Micheal’s stunning engagement session is certainly no exception. Find your Friday pick-me-up in the gallery right here.

In the valley of Santa Ynez, upon a mesa at the Firestone Family Ranch, resonating with family love and history, photographer Joel Serrato captures an afternoon between Michael and Molly, a couple new in their partnership, yet deep in their love. Surrounded by the natural beauty of the vineyards and ranch life, Michael glances at Molly and winks, Molly clasps Michael’s hands tightly in hers, and their motions seem to be as one, fluid and knowing, caring and amorous. Joel’s intuition kicks in and he snaps each shot engrossed in Molly and Michael’s fleeting yet somehow lingering moments of adoration.

Although only one year has passed since the birth of this relationship, with busy lives split between school and work, both in Santa Ynez and Santa Barbara, Michael and Molly have found a pure balance and ease with which they have built their foundation; a balance and ease that Joel so seamlessly immortalizes within his frame.

Photography: Joel Serrato | Venue: Private Estate

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Marmalade Sky Films + A Discount + A Giveaway!

There is something so special about having your wedding day captured on film for you and your honey to relive over and over again. And when the film is done by the insanely creative Northern California boutique cinematography company Marmalade Sky Films, you’ll find any excuse to press play.

Behind the lens is a team of best friends, Eugene + Matt, who worked in the film industry prior to discovering their passion for wedding cinematography. Thanks to this experience, every film they create is based in a deep love for visual storytelling. Their films capture all the special moments of the couple’s big day, from the kisses to the laughter and tears, in a way that is authentic and genuine, to tell each couple’s individual and unique love story.

Are you head-over-heels yet? Well now’s the time to book your big day with Marmalade Sky Films because they’re giving SMP readers who book before September 2015 $200 off a Wedding Cinematography Package of their choice! Simply mention this post when booking to redeem the offer. Check out their packages here.
the-giveaway
Oh and there’s more! Marmalade Sky Films is giving one lucky reader a Save the Date film shot on Full HD ($499 value).

To enter:Comment on this post with why you’d love to have Marmalade Sky Films tell the story of you and your honey!

To win: A winner will be randomly chosen and announced in WIUP on Friday, April 24, 2015.

The details: Session must take place in San Francisco or mutually agreed upon location on mutually agreed upon date. The giveaway includes session time and one Engagement Video or Save the Date Invitation video (30 seconds to 1 minute in length).

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Rustic Meets Romantic Vineyard Wedding

When it comes to weddings that completely wow, this wedding has IT.  Think seriously stunning details from the talents at Kristeen LaBrot Events (they’re brilliant) meets a super cute duo (Taylor Swift first date, anyone?) meets a breathtaking rustic setting.  Add in some yummy cuisine from Contemporary Catering and it’s soooo worthy of your entire Friday.  See it captured by William Innes right here.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Styles
Rustic

From the Bride… Kyle and I were neighbors our sophomore year of college at Loyola Marymount University. But we really didn’t know each other at all until one night we were hanging out in my apartment with our friends, and I saw that there was a Taylor Swift concert the following night. I was such a big fan, and yelled out asking if anyone wanted to go. Kyle raised his hand enthusiastically, but no one else did. I was nervous because I didn’t know Kyle at all, and thought more people would be on board. We ended up drunkenly buying the tickets that night, and going to the concert the next night, both nervous and unsure of each other. On the car ride to the Staples Center, we were talking nonstop and missed the beginning of the concert because we were so unaware of the time as we talked. From then on, we were really good friends, and over the next six months, started falling in love.

Right when we drove onto the Triunfo Creek Vineyards property, we knew we had found our venue. Kyle is from Washington state, and I am from Minnesota, so we were very clear that we wanted our wedding to look and feel like where we both grew up, and Triunfo just felt like home. We loved the farm house, as the inside reminded us a lot of the cabins we grew up going to, and we also loved how spacious the lawn was, which is an unusual find in the Los Angeles area.

The inspiration behind our style was summers in Minnesota and Seattle – a time where you are outside with your family and friends, enjoying fresh homemade food and drinks, playing outside, but most of all, feeling relaxed and at home. Kyle and I love the outdoors, and nature, so we wanted the vibe and style to feel rustic, and also simple yet elegant. We also wanted people to feel at home, and be able to less loose, but feel laid back at the same time. Having the yard games – like a bean bag toss and beer pong – helped to bring that vibe, as did the soft colors of blush and champagne mixed in through the wedding day.

I loved that on each of the bean toss boards, we had the state lines of Minnesota and Washington screen printed on. I also carried my Grandma’s small white bible, that both she and my aunt carried down the aisle on their wedding day. It was very special to have that in my hands as I walked down the aisle to Kyle – it helped me to feel grounded and supported by my family.

A woman that I very much look up to, told me that at least once during the worldwind of the day, stop, be quiet, and take a moment to take in every detail. I did this right after dinner as we were about to begin greeting tables, and I will never forget it. I stood holding Kyle’s hand, surveyed the crowd under the twinkling lights, right as the sun was going down, and the sky was this gorgeous indescribable blue, and I saw family friends who had flown in from China, my whole family and friends from Minnesota, all of Kyle’s high school friends from Seattle, my sorority sisters and his fraternity brothers – every person in the world who we love were all there for us, and also having so much fun, and it was just an amazing and overwhelming feeling of being loved and filled with happiness.

I have a few favorite wedding pictures, but one of them is a shot from the back of Kyle and I sitting with my maid of honor and his best man – they were fist bumping and we were holding hands. I also love the picture of Kyle kissing my forehead, where we are framed by the tree branch overhead. I think the lighting looks magical in that one. Another favorite was of the whole wedding party candidly walking toward the camera.

Don’t stress, it will all come together just right! Also, get a wedding planner if you don’t want to cry.

Photography: William Innes Photography | Event Design: Kristeen LaBrot Events | Wedding Planner: Kristeen LaBrot Events | Floral Design: Fujiko's Flowers | Cake: Fantasy Frostings | Invitations: Paper Source | Church: St. Maximilian Kolbe Catholic Church | Catering: Contemporary Catering | Hair & Makeup: Design Visage | DJ: Luke From Premiere Events | Venue: Triunfo Creek Vineyards | All Other Graphic Design: Kristeen LaBrot Events | Groom And Groomsmen Attire: Vera Wang Black For Men's Warehouse | Lawn Games: Heartwood & Co. | Rentals: A Rental Connection | Trolley: Hop Aboard Trolley

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
Wedding Shoot Inspired by the Written Word

As a lover of words, and of course, a lover of all things wedding, an inspiration shoot that marries the two was top of my list of weddings I needed to experience, and I need to thank Sterling Engagements profusely for not only stepping up to the plate, but hitting a major home run with this one. With help from Shawna Yamamoto, Pretty Vintage Table, Prim and Pixie, and so many more, Jessica Lewis Photography’s images of the day couldn’t be any prettier!


Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Vineyards
Styles
Romantic

From Sterling Engagements… Words, books and romance were the inspiration for this rustic and feminine styled shoot. We had previously featured a blog post called The Written Word that encouraged couples to use books pages in a variety of ways as part of their wedding day decor. Whether expressed through a poem, story, sonnet or a classic novel, the written word elicits romance and enchantment. With its rolling hills, majestic vineyards, and a gorgeous rustic farm house, Triunfo Creek Vineyards was the perfect setting for this shoot. We partnered with some of our favorite creative vendors to produce our version of a romantic book themed wedding complete with stunning decor, a uniquely conceptualized menu and scrumptious cocktails. Our goal was to convey a sense of rustic elegance, femininity, comfort and of course, sweet love.

On June 28, 2013 when the Prop 8 appeal was officially lifted, we were ecstatic and knew almost instantly we wanted to design a shoot inspired by the marriage of a same-sex couple. We were even more thrilled to have the opportunity to use a real newly engaged same-sex couple as models for this styled shoot. Since we were working with two lovely ladies, we decided to keep things ultra-feminine and pretty, incorporating an abundance of lace, metallics and a color palette utilizing pinks, cream and navy with just a hint of mint.

Beginning with the stationery suite, not a single item wasn’t carefully thought out and designed with love. Prim and Pixie went above and beyond and created an exquisite collection utilizing laser cut prettiness and actual text resembling a novel. The fonts were rustic and romantic yet a tiny bit modern. We were completely swept away by the envelope liner also mirroring love definitions within a dictionary.

A wood palette was up-cycled into a gorgeous backdrop and adorned with open books, flowers and signature cocktails along with their menus. The base of the installation was filled with additional antique bottles, florals and distinct liquors. Gorgeous vintage furniture was also sprinkled on this same patio and became the perfect setting for a quiet moment between lovers.

Further down on the patio facing hills of Triunfo Creek Vineyards was our ceremony site. The design incorporated white wood frames, letters in a variety of fonts and unique textures, along with handmade book page rosettes and garland. The setting was accented with vintage furniture and unique accessories from Pretty Vintage Table.

The escort card display utilized an antique library file cabinet. This was one of our favorite details, as each letter spelled out a word from “always” to “devoted” to “magical”; each word defined what love is.

The tabletop was an extraordinary collection of vintage antique romance combined with a whimsical garden. Accented with both classic and unique florals as well as greenery, beautiful vintage dishes and an abundance of candles, we loved adding the additional DIY book page rosettes and other details handcrafted from book pages. Suspended from above was a collection of picture frames as well as words. A soft and lovely aesthetic was the goal for our tabletop and after adding in vintage furniture, we were just over the moon with the final result.

Nathaniel Neubauer of Contemporary Catering created a menu with courses that symbolically spelled out “Why Eye Love Ewe So Much”. From a “question mark” local avocado with a peeled tomato to a Ribeye taco in a Parmesan crisp shell to beets and Burrata; the creativity just continued to flow. The final two courses highlighted Colorado Lamp Chops and Poached Fruit in a Crème Anglaise. The presentation was stellar and the cohesiveness of our inspiration couldn’t have been better complimented.

Specialty cocktails were mixed and served on the outside patio overlooking the vineyards. Each course featured a different cocktail crafted by Chad Dickey of The Cocktail Concierge. Our favorite definitely was “My First Kiss “which was a modern version of a Pimm’s Cup with a heart shaped cucumber garnish.

The gorgeous Fantasy Frostings’ designed cake was nestled against the fireplace among a windowpane with the words from Elizabeth Barrett Browning’s “How do I love thee” written on it. The cake featured simple yet detailed designs and sugar flowers with black ribbon.

Both brides were made up to perfection by Star Whitaker of Couture Beauty Team – it was the ultimate engagement experience for Natalie and Alison who’d just recently gotten engaged. We were so thrilled to be able to share this with them.

Photography: Jessica Lewis Photography | Floral Design: Shawna Yamamoto Event Design | Cake: Fantasy Frostings | Stationery: Prim And Pixie | Catering: Contemporary Catering | Calligraphy: Calligraphy Katrina | Wedding Venue: Triunfo Creek Vineyards | Beauty Team: Couture Beauty Team | Bridal Gown: Lili Bridals | Cocktails: Cocktail Concierge | Event Design And Production: Sterling Engagements | Linens: Designer Specialty Linens | Rentals: A Rental Connection | Vintage Rentals: Pretty Vintage Table

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
Malibu Vineyard Wedding

This Malibu wedding is what happens when a bride brings ALL the right vendors on board for her day. Vendors who truly understand her vision – plus then some. I’m talking creatives like Lilla BelloThe Butter EndLounge Couture and Copper Willow Paper Studio, who took a blank vineyard canvas and made it boho chic perfection. The lovely Leila Brewster was on hand to capture every moment of the day, and you can find it all right here.

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Settings
Vineyard

From Lilla Bello… Annie and Gregg Fienberg were an incredibly fun and creative pair from day one! Gregg (well known Hollywood Producer of True Blood) and his ‘bohemian chic’, and equally creative bride Annie had visions of a gathering filled with elements of natural beauty, California living, and most of all FUN! The location, Triunfo Creek Vineyards, was a perfect backdrop to this outdoor soiree.

Set at the very top of the Malibu canyons in late summer/early fall, with rolling hillsides, gorgeous vineyards, the most perfect ‘barn house’ you have ever seen, big oak trees and stunning details at every turn. The ceremony was set underneath one of the giant oaks, whimsically decorated with hanging eucalyptus vines falling from the tree limbs and adorned in white blooms, and a heart shaped wreath with the couples initials A+G to imitate a carving that lovers might make.

Festive market lighting was strewn over long outdoor farm tables, with mis-matched vased florals trailing down the entire centerline. Florals embodied everything wild, organic, light and airy! Colors were blush tones, creams, pops of yellows and peaches! Greenery included silvery eucalyptus, bright green bay leaves and jasmine vines, mixed in with both green and blooming herbs of sage, chamomile and lavender! (Can’t you just smell it?!!) Garden roses and giant café au lait dahlias were amongst Annie’s favorite blooms, juxtaposed with a teal toned succulent to give it that California-rustic feel. Table numbers were a special touch from Dad, who used raw wood and nails to mark each numbered section. (Love!). The food was as beautiful to look at as it was to eat – farm to table cuisine, plated family style to continue with the fun and communal dining vibe!

The details went on and on, from the fully styled airsteam trailer, to the adorable menu cards, the mantle in the barn house dripping in vines, to the flower girl with the bay leaf hair garland and cowboy boots! Annie’s dress was a custom collaboration which she was very much a part of … the pink dress, absolutely dreamy!!! The mis-matched succulent boutonnieres, and Gregg’s perfect blue suit!! The pictures kind of speak for themselves (thanks to the amazing Leila Brewster) but this night just screams “a good time” all around!

Photography: Leila Brewster | Event Planning: Tiffany Bowne of Lounge Couture | Floral Design: Lilla Bello | Cake: The Butter End | Invitations: Copper Willow Paper Studio | Bride's Shoes: Vero Cuoio | Rings: Todd Reed | Catering: Global Cuisine Catering | lighting: Modern Illumination | Grooms Attire: Isaia | Grooms Shoes: Ferragamo | Airstream Trailer: Silver Safari | Bride's Dress: Nadine Haders | Flower Girl boots: Target | Flower Girl dress: Ilovegorgeous | Groomsmen Attire: John Varvatos | Rentals: Town & Country | Vineyard: Triunfo Creek Vineyards

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here