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A Romantic Cave Was Their Cozy Reception Venue!

This couple’s “how we met” story is irony at its best. “Our journey began with a firm handshake and a strong drink on a weekday. He was an attorney. I was in law school working as a paralegal. By the time we got married, we were both divorce attorneys…go figure.” And while you might not peg these two as romantics, you’d be wrong because there wedding day captured by Mirelle Carmichael and Dax Victorino Films is about as wildly romantic as it gets. See it all, including the bride’s stunning dress from Haute Bride in The Vault.

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Spring
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Al Fresco

From The Bride…Our journey began with a firm handshake and a strong drink on a weekday. He was an attorney. I was in law school working as a paralegal. By the time we got married, we were both divorce attorneys…go figure.

Tristan proposed in my sister and brother-in-law’s backyard after a sushi date night. I was completely surprised. When we walked into their backyard, there were flowers, candles, wine barrels, pictures of us, streams of lights hanging from the oak tree, all while our song played around us. After he popped the question (and a bottle of Champagne), all of our loved ones walked outside to greet us. Unbeknownst to me, our family and best friends had been watching from the upstairs window. This moment was extra special because a month earlier my father was diagnosed with Stage 4 cancer and had been released from the hospital a week prior. To see him walk out into the backyard instantly filled my eyes with tears. Lucky for us, the entire moment was captured on film.

After a year of planning with Lara, from Sealed with a Kiss Events, Tristan and I said our “I do’s” at the beautiful Meritage Resort and Spa in Napa, California, with 160 of our closest family and friends.

On the morning of our big day, Tristan had each of his groomsmen deliver a gift to me every hour for six hours, with the last gift being from his father, also his Best Man. He made the anticipation to see him grow exponentially. As Tristan and I decided our first-look would be at the altar, I planned a first-look with my dad in a cute little church connected to the resort. Everyone was in tears as I walked down the aisle to meet my dad. It is a moment I will never forget.

My brother-in-law, who holds a special place to Tristan and I, officiated our wedding and set the tone for the rest of the day. Our ceremony was in the resort’s vineyard, while our reception was underground in the resort’s man made cave.

It was incredible watching our vision come to life. The way to Tristan’s heart is with an old classic novel and a good, tasty bourbon. This became our theme. From the bourbon bar with Tristan’s favorite bourbons, to the personally engraved brass bookmarks for each of our guests, the feeling of an old gentleman’s library came to life. And of course, our wedding would not be complete without a good donut display for our guests.

It was truly the best day of our lives. It was filled with more love and support than ever anticipated. It was a perfect start to the rest of our lives.

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Photography: Mirelle Carmichael | Cinematography: Dax Victorino Films | Event Planning: Lara Kreutner | Floral Design: Studio Mondine | Wedding Dress: Haute Bride | Hair: Artistry in Hair | Band: Moonshiner Collective | Favors: Snappin Engraving Snappin Studio | Venue: The Meritage Resort And Spa | Bridesmaid Bracelets: Frosted Willow on Etsy | Bridesmaid Hair + Makeup: Dolled Up Services | Rentals: Michael Hensley Party Rentals | Robes: Plum Pretty Sugar

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
Instead of a Huge Portuguese Wedding, This Couple Had a Small Napa Affair

When this Bride and Groom began to plan their wedding, they knew that with their large families, it had the potential to become “My Big Fat Portuguese Wedding.” So instead, the duo made the decision to escape to Napa’s The Carneros Inn for an intimate wedding with 60 of their closest friends and family. And with vendors like Bella Bridal Napa ValleyErin Hearts Court and Morocco Lee, the end result is simply perfect. Take it all in in The Vault!

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Summer
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From The Bride…Nelson and I met 11 years ago at a Halloween party and as ridiculous as we looked we knew we were destined for each other! Our love grew stronger over the years and led to us moving into our tiny shoebox apartment in NYC. Those were some of our best years and we soon after got engaged in Paris. We both come from large Portuguese families and knew our wedding had the potential to become huge and overwhelming so we made the decision to make it an intimate setting with 60 of our closest friends and family. Nelson and I felt a deep connection to the romantic, rustic, and organic feel of Napa after having visited. That helped set the vibe for our big day and we’re so happy we followed our gut. We started the festivities with treating our guests to a wine tasting tour of three of Napa’s wonderful vineyards. We had a blast! Our wedding day was picture perfect. The ceremony and cocktail was held outside in sunny 80 degree weather. Following we had a wonderful dinner inside the bright and airy Hilltop room at Carneros Inn with sweeping views of Napa vineyards. The food was amazing and the staff at Carneros couldn’t have been more seamless. We were worry free as we danced the night away with our friends and family!

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Vault CTA

Photography: Erin Hearts Court | Cinematography: MOROCCO LEE WEDDINGS | Floral Design: Julie Stevens Designs | Wedding Dress: Reem Acra | Invitations: Signora E Mare | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bracelet: Alexis Bittar | Catering: The Carneros Inn | Hair + Makeup: Bella Bridal Napa Valley | Groom's Attire: Paul Smith | Venue: The Carneros Inn | Earrings: David Yurman | Guestbook: Spellbinderie

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
Design Your Dream Day with WED School + A Giveaway!

We’re big fans of Shannon Leahy (read: she’s awesome), so when she told us she was launching a fab WED School to teach each and every one of you how to plan + design your Big Day like a pro, well… happy dancing ensued.  Think a self-study training platform that will walk you through the creative process + develop your unique sense of style to design a day that is totally chic and totally you. YES.

We all love Shannon Leahy and her stunning, stop-you-in-your-tracks weddings, so signing up for her WED School (aka, Wedding & Event Design School) to learn everything there is to know about creating a breathtaking event is sort of a no-brainer.  I’m talking tips and tricks the pros use, plus step by step tools that will give you that cohesive + professional + beyond breathtaking day you’ve always dreamed of… one that will leave all of your guests talking with each and every gorgeous detail.  It’s awesome.

So what are you waiting for, loves?  Head to WED School today to sign up for your very first course, Event Design 101.  You’ll learn the skills you need to throw the greatest wedding ever, plus master all sorts of celebrations, from gorgeous dinner parties to intimate anniversary parties to baby showers and more. In other words?  You’ll be planning like a pro in no time at all.  Contact them NOW to get your party on.

the-giveaway

What: WED School is giving a free event design course to one lucky winner! (Value $399)

How: Simply leave a comment below telling us which aspect of your wedding planning experience your most excited about!

Who: One lucky reader, chosen completely at random, will be announced right here on SMP on Friday, April 22, 2016.  For terms and conditions, click here.  Good luck, lovelies! xo

Photography (Top to Bottom): Josh Gruetzmacher (Image 1, 2, 5) + Silvana Di Franco (Image 3) + Sasha Gulish (Image 4)

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