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Romantic + Traditional Napa Valley Destination Wedding

I have this theory that Napa Valley weddings are always stop-you-in-your-tracks-stunning. Proving the pretty? This romantic destination fete from Briana Marie Photography. It’s Napa at its finest complete with Sweet On Cake treats and a celebratory evening graced with California sunshine. See the unparalleled beauty here!

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Summer
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Elegant

From the beautiful Bride… For our wedding, Jason and I, really wanted to spend the weekend embracing the celebration with all of our loved ones. To us, the best way to do that was to have a smaller, intimate destination wedding. A few years prior we had traveled to Napa and fell in love with its beautiful scenery, amazing food and relaxing atmosphere. It was the perfect place to have a joyous, laid-back wedding weekend full of celebration.

Since everyone was flying across the country to attend our wedding we wanted to make sure they had a great time and enjoyed some local treats. In addition to the wedding we also planned a winery tour (aka the “Sch-winery tour” as a play on words with Jason’s last name) with a lunch stop at the Oakville grocery, a golf outing, a mani/pedi date complete with Bouchon pasteries, a rehearsal dinner at a local winery, and a farewell brunch.

The only trip we took out to Napa for wedding planning was for venue scouting. We looked at a few venues and didn’t come across anything that jumped out at us. That was until we had dinner at Auberge du Soleil. It was the perfect place with its outstanding food, stunning views, understated elegance, and wonderful hospitality.

For the décor / flowers we wanted to embrace the surrounding beauty while creating a casually elegant atmosphere. I wanted the color palette and décor to compliment the panoramic views from the terrace so a neutral palette was chosen. The ceremony was held outside where beautiful garland lined the aisle and draped the welcome table and Chuppah. Farm tables full of candles and low ivory flower arrangements framed the dance floor. During the reception the ceremony space was transformed into a comfortable sitting area where guests could enjoy the valley views and romantic sunset.

We would like to send a HUGE thank you to all that were involved with the wedding, and to all of our family and friends for making our wedding one of the most AMAZING weekends ever!

Photography: Briana Marie Photography | Wedding Planner: Cheryl Clisby Events | Floral Design: Louloudi Design | Cake : Sweet On Cake | Hair And Makeup: Sisters Salon | DJ: Boutique DJs - Josh Dukes | Favors: Woodhouse Chocolates | Officiant: Shyamala Littlefield | Transportation: Napa Valley Tours & Transportation | Venue: Auberge Du Soleil | Linens: La Tavola | Musicians: Bertina Mitchell | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals Napa | Welcome Bags: Model Bakery

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Art Deco Beaulieu Garden Wedding

We’re being spoiled today loves, spoiled with SO much pretty from Jacin Fitzgerald Events and Tec Petaja. This morning we traveled South for this dreamy coastal affair and now we’re heading to the west coast for a Beaulieu Garden celebration full of Art Deco goodness, and one utterly stunning Bride. Catch it all in motion below with Elysium Productions and stay tuned for this afternoon’s Rutherford fete!

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From Jacin Fitzgerald EventsKatya + Colin gathered their closest friends and family from across the globe in one of the most beautiful places in the US – Napa Valley. Their ceremony took place at the quaint Grace Episcopal Church in St. Helena, CA and shuttles then drove guests to the reception for libations, dinner and dancing at Beaulieu Garden just down the road. The bride’s family is from Russia and had instilled a love of all things Art-Deco and and appreciation of art and beauty from a very young age. After searching for venues with their planner, Katya + Colin knew Beaulieu was the one – it embodied the sense of the 20s era with the sunken gardens, poolside setting, and evoked the feeling of timeless beauty that they had been searching for.

Photography: Tec Petaja | Videography: Elysium Productions | Event Design: Jacin Fitzgerald Events | Event Planning: Jacin Fitzgerald Events | Floral Design: Jacin Fitzgerald Events | Cake: Sweet On Cake | Ceremony Venue: Grace Episcopal Church | Reception Venue: Beaulieu Garden | Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Two Birds | Catering: Paula LeDuc Fine Catering | Makeup: Betten Chaston | Hair: Eugene Toye | Lighting: Got Light | DJ: DJ Cams | Groom's Attire: Ralph Lauren | Bride's Gown + Veil: Jenny Packham | Caramel Favors: The Caramel Jar | Chairs: Blueprint Studios | Cocktail + Welcome Linens: La Tavola | Custom Lace Dinner Overlays: I Do Linens | Day-of Paper Goods + Design: Southern Fried Paper | Invitation Suite (Odeon Design): Bella Figura | Lounge + Vintage Rentals: One True Love Vintage Rentals | Musical Booking Agent: Entire Productions | Photobooth: Tomfoolery | Piano Artist: Art Khu

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Whimsical Napa Wedding

In the world of fabulous weddings, Nancy Liu Chin can do no wrong.  So give her a duo as adorable as these two, plus a stunning + vibrant color palette and the results are pure, unadulterated magic.  It’s lush, peony-filled blooms meets the gorgeous beauty stylings of It’s A Date at the Powder Room meets the cutest of cakes from Sweet On Cake.  See it all captured brilliantly by Adeline & Grace Photography right here.

And a sweet sneak peak from Marmalade Sky Films… 

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From Nancy Liu Chin Designs… ‘All you need is love ‘ is a famous song from the Beatles and it really does embody the spirit of this love story between Cherry and Sam, who were married on a beautiful summery day in the hills of Rutherford overlooking the Napa Valley. Love is what united these two. And in every little details, their love for the Beatles, coffee, good food, fun and dance came out.

I love that their wedding wasn’t that typical look of a beautiful Napa winery wedding. Instead I love how Cherry and Sam used wine bottles from their own collection to hold ceramic table numbers to indicate where guests were sitting. How terrific is the idea that they had a terrarium with flowers and placed a fun wedding quiz to entertain their guests, plus the addition of note cards for people to write advice. And who doesn’t love the casual and whimsy feel of coral pink peonies to finish the tables in a modern vase over linens by La Tavola.

In terms of colors, it’s so refreshing to see a pop of color. A beautiful arch of wood with hanging globes of flowers in hues of lavender, coral, greens, pinks all work to add to a festive mood. The bride and groom stood in front of the birch arch and repeated their vows to each other while best friends and family looked on. Bridesmaids all wearing unique dresses also carried bouquets of delightful coral peonies that popped with freshness. And who can forget the flower girl carrying that unique basket. Cherry Picks Sam. Swoon!

From the Groom… Life was good. I had just been accepted into graduate school, I escaped a destructive relationship and I was on my way to sunny San Diego for a summer internship. I had no idea my carefree summer on the west coast would change my life forever. After a few weeks, I met Cherry at a mutual friend’s birthday party. We hit it off and became close friends. Cherry would frequently invite my friend Brian and I to join her for movies, coffee, dinners, bar trips and parties. I quickly learned we had a lot in common and started falling for her.

From the Bride… It was a lovely July afternoon in San Diego, about a month after Sam and I first met. I was stuck between tedious intern tasks and burnt office coffee, when a Facebook notification popped up: “Your friend Samuel Hertz shared a playlist with you on” “A playlist?” I thought to myself, “I love reading people through music, especially someone I JUST met at a friend’s house party”, so I clicked on the link. 70 indie songs appeared on my screen and above it was an interesting title – “Cherry”. Oh! So I was the one being read? I didn’t translate the gesture into a pick up move, and Sam can deny it all he wants, but the playlist was flawless and I was delightfully surprised.

Two years after we met, Sam and I were already an inseparable couple living in the Bay Area. We took a road trip down California coast with close friends. One night during the trip, Sam and I went on a date – a lovely dinner overlooking the soft waves of La Jolla coves. It was my idea of course. When he ordered filet for entree, something clicked in my head – 4th of July, San Deigo, beach – the exact backdrop of our first encounter, when we discovered a common love for steak and butter. I was about to point out it was a “day worth celebrating”, but the beautiful entrees distracted me. Routinely, I took out my phone to snap a few shots. As I moved the focus from my plate to his, a giant sparkle “came into the picture”. Instead of screaming and cheering, I burst into laughter and happy tears as he devotedly asked me to marry him. Only Sam can “sneak” a proposal into my meticulously planned trip. “YES!” I said, to the man who knows me better than I know myself, the man who makes EVERY day worth celebrating.

Unlike most of our engaged friends, Sam and I fought to be in charge of every wedding detail. Our common goal – this celebration must scream the things we are nuts about: wine, coffee, vibrant colors, the Beatles and each other. We began with a boatload of overwhelming ideas but Nancy and the creative team translated into a style: vibrant and whimsical. It was perfectly us.

Since the first 18 months of our relationship was long distance, most of our guests only saw us together a few times. But Sam and I would not have happened without the help of friends and family, so we want them to come to the valley, spend the evening with us and be confident that they supported the right unity!

Photography: Adeline & Grace Photography | Cinematography: Marmalade Sky Films | Event Design: Nancy Liu Chin Designs | Floral Design: Nancy Liu Chin Designs | Cake: Sweet On Cake | Hair And Makeup: It's A Date At The Powder Room | Groom's Attire: Paul Smith | Venue: Auberge Du Soleil | Attire: Sew Heidi Wedding De-Tailor | Bride's Gown: Vera Wang | Rentals: La Tavola

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Greek Orthodox Northern California Wedding

Don’t get me wrong, the rest of this wedding is hold-the-phone gorgeous, but even getting past this first bouquet image? Well, it’s easier said than done. The prettiest mix of peonies, garden roses and ranunculus by Mandolin Floral, it’s a Pinterest sensation just waiting to happen and we certainly wouldn’t blame you if stopped to stare All. Day. Long. More wedding goodness from DeFiore Photography in the gallery right here.

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From DeFiore PhotographySandra and Chris traveled 3,000 miles to exchange vows and celebrate their wedding in the heart of wine county in Northern California- the very same place they got engaged! Sandra’s family choose the ascension cathedral to pay homage to Sandra’s greek upbringing. Their Greek orthodox wedding ceremony took my breath away. The fact that Sandra and Chris choose an area so rich with culture and tradition while incorporating so many of their personal touches is a testament to their deep connection to family and desire to blend their distinct personalities into the wedding day. Shades of pinks, blushes, ivories and gold complimented their day and it all came together like an excellent, balanced glass of Pinot Noir. I have a special place in my heart for eucalyptus, Peonies and letter press so the natural Mandolin flowers and Postscript paired together perfectly on the invitation suite.

Sandra wore a delicate strapless modern lace Vera Wang and Chris’s black tux with pink bow tie matched the featured wedding color. Their look was simple, classic and elegant. 

The wedding and reception took place at the Auberge De Soleil, one of the most beautiful venues I’ve ever had the pleasure to photograph. There’s something alluring about Northern California, the lush, rich feel of the ocean air that’s so enticing, and a nice change of pace from mountains of Northern Colorado.

I’ve been coming to Northern California on and off for years, but Sandra and Chris’s wedding was the first time I’ve had the opportunity to take in the richness of the landscape while documenting such a beautiful affair. Just a few of the things I love about “Wine Country” ; the wild rosemary and olive trees, mixed with a hint of ocean air from the bay. The turning of the grape leaves and the quiet stillness just after the harvest. The valley was still bustling, but over all, it held a quite space. The grapes had been pulled from the vines, which means it’s time for people to quietly retreat and close things up for the winter.

This energy was perfect for Sandra and Chris’s intimate wedding cerebration. The warm, golden light of October in wine county was the perfect shade for all the outdoor photographs and really helped to set the mood for the whole event. A rainbow means something different in each culture, but to me it’s a symbol of promise and connection. This is what I see in store for Chris and Sandra. Their connection is undeniable – and made this wedding celebration was a perfect kick-off to a new life together.

Photography: DeFiore Photography | Flowers: Mandolin Floral | Invitations: Postscript Paper | Ceremony: Ascension Cathedral | Reception: Auberge Du Soleil | Band: Shake | Venue: Auberge Du Soleil | Film Lab: The Find Lab | Jewelry- Wedding Bands, Engagement: Fuenfer Jewelers | Rehearsal Dinner: Silverado Vineyards | Wedding Attire: Vera's House Of Bridal

Napa Valley Welcome Dinner + Grape Stomping

Near or far, when it comes to welcoming your wedding guests, doing it in style is key. And I’d say these two cuties nailed it with their gorgeously cozy Napa welcome soiree, grape stomping and all! Guests were greeted with sweet welcome bags designed by the planning genius that is Laurie Arons Special Events, while Rebecca Yale Portraits (the Bride’s amazing sis!) snapped up all the pretty touches and smiling faces. Join in all the fun right here in the gallery.

This beautiful sign from The First Snowfall makes for a stunning welcome to Grgich Hills Estate.

Guests getting their stomp on! We’ve officially added grape stomping to our must-try list at SMP.

Stamped table numbers placed in halved wine corks from Kathryn Murray made for a sweet touch.

How gorgeous are those custom wood welcome bag tags from Anticipate Invitations paired with Curlicue Calligraphy? The perfect rustic detail for a vineyard soiree.

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Fall
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From Rebecca Yale PortraitsI love nothing more than photographing an amazing party full of great friends, great wine and great food and this one is particularly special to me because it was the welcome dinner kicking off the celebration for my sister’s destination wedding weekend in Napa. We chose Grgich Hills Estate, one of our favorite vineyard’s in Napa, to host the party and it was the perfect intro to Napa for all of our East Coast friends who had flown in from New York. Not only is Grgich one of the most beautiful vineyards around with the most delectable of wines, but they have a very storied history within Napa. A bottle of 1973 Chateau Montelena Chardonnay, made by Mike Grgich, won the blind Paris tasting in 1973 that put Napa on the map as a world class wine region. Kelly at Grgich helped us create such a lovely evening for our friends and family, which began with a cocktail hour and hors d’oeuvres on the patio of the Ranch House. Guests were invited to stomp the grapes (a la Lucy) and taste the grapes that had just been pulled off the vines. Underneath strings of twinkly lights guests dined next to the vineyard and watched as the sun set over the endless rows of vines.

Upon their arrival in Napa guests were presented with a welcome bag, crafted by Laurie Arons Special Events, containing all of the couple’s favorite snacks and essentials for a weekend in wine country including a map of the area, bouchon from Bouchon Bakery and a one day membership pass at Grgich. The totes were perfect to carry around all weekend, perhaps holding a bottle or two of wine purchased at the amazing local vineyards. My sister accessorized for the weekend with the FEED bridal bag, which not only makes a perfect tote for the weekend, but also provides 1 child with micro-nutrient powder for an entire year! It even has cute compartments inside for something old, new, borrowed and blue.

Photography: Rebecca Yale Portraits | Coordination: Kelly At Grgich Hills | Floral Design: Thoughts In Bloom | Reception Venue: Grgich Hills Estate | Bride's Shoes: Miu Miu | Catering: Oak Avenue Catering | Calligraphy: Written Word Calligraphy | Bride's Bag: Feed | Bride's Dress: Haute Hippie | Escort Cards: Rifle Paper Co. | Film Processing: Richard Photo Lab | Lighting And Linens: Classic Party Rentals | Pashminas: Yadis Closet | Sign: The First Snowfall | Table Number Stamps: Kathryn Murray | Table Numbers: Better Off Wed | Welcome Bag: Laurie Arons Special Events | Welcome Bag Calligraphy: Curlicue Calligraphy | Welcome Bag Tags: Anticipate Invitations

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