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Classic Black-Tie San Francisco Wedding With a Twist

Black-tie weddings run the risk of being stuffy, but this fun couple ensured their wedding at San Francisco’s James Leary Flood Mansion had a few twists to keep things fun. From the playful heart-shaped sunglasses to the whimsical animal figurine escort cards and the mood lighting from Got Light, this wedding was definitely fun. Enjoy it all thanks to stunning photos from onelove photography here.

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Spring
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Romantic

From the Bride… After living on the East Coast our whole lives, we moved to San Francisco in 2013 and quickly made it our home. When we got engaged, we thought it a great idea to share our new home with those closest to us, so we decided to get married on the West Coast. With so many beautiful venue choices in the Bay Area, we searched for a while before finding the perfect, classic San Francisco spot. We had always thought our wedding would be casual, but when we first viewed the James Leary Flood Mansion, we realized that we were going to be having a much more formal affair than originally intended! We fell in love with the vintage glamour and elegance of the space, but we wanted to add our own touches to avoid any possible stuffiness that a black tie wedding might involve. We chose purposely less formal table settings and flowers, and we added some personal touches—our signature cocktails were simply a Corona with lime and a glass of Prosecco—so our guests would feel more like they were joining us for a big family dinner.

We both love animals and talk constantly about when kind of pet(s) we should get in the future, so when I came across the idea to create miniature gold animal place card holders, I knew it had to be done! I loved spending time creating the tiny holders leading up to the wedding and we adore how they turned out! Two especially meaningful animals (our college mascots) adorned the top of our cake.

We adored our flowers. Cathy Cowman from The Bud Stop understood our vision completely. The Dogwood blooms in the center of the tables and around the room held a special meaning: Dogwood is the state flower of Virginia, where Ricky and I first met.

The entire weekend felt like a dream- it was everything we hoped for and more. Some highlights include having friends and family from across the country visit us in our new hometown, a more than hilarious and just plain crazy ceremony experience (our priest got the groom’s name wrong, among other things!), and coming down the stairs at the Flood Mansion after being announced for the first time. We felt such love and gratefulness to see the faces of the most important people in our lives!

In the midst of making (what feels like) a hundred thousand decisions, remember to prioritize. What matters most to YOU as a couple should come first. Everything else can probably wait. Also, work with a coordinator!

Photography: onelove photography | Floral Design: The Bud Stop | Wedding Dress: Sarah Seven | Cake: Susie Cakes | Ceremony Venue: St. Vincent De Paul Church | Reception Venue: James Leary Flood Mansion | Bride's Shoes: Kate Spade | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Amsale | Catering: Melons Catering | Hair: Blo Blow Dry Bar | Lighting: Got Light | Groom's Attire: Tailor's Keep | Groom's Shoes: Stubbs & Wootton | Officiant: Rev. Linh Nguyen | Bride's Accessories: BHLDN | Event Coordination: Erin Armstrong

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Elegant White Wedding at Asian Art Museum

Today is the type of day where we count our blessings. Because not only did we get to share one stunning fete from onelove photography, but we’ve got another to wrap add to the loveliness. It’s an elegant wedding brimming with originality and romance, one look at the unique ceremony and you’ll be hooked. Trust me, the gallery is not to be missed!

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Spring
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Art Gallery
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Elegant

From the beautiful Bride…We were very focused on being surrounded by the people we love most. We know the wedding is about celebrating our love, but its also about starting our life together with all the people we love most in this world. It was very important for us to thank our loved ones and let them know they were there for a reason and that we wouldn’t have wanted this day without them. We also wanted our night to be formal and for everyone to look their best, but still be wild and free. We had a Black Tie wedding and served fried chicken. Style and comfort.

We had handkerchiefs as our party favor. I (Traci) knew I wanted to give them out before the wedding to give my very weepy family something to cry into. My dad always carried a hankie, and I wanted to honor his style. My engagement ring is gold, so all the decor was gold to go along with that.

When I was planning the menu, I first looked at regular “wedding” food and then opted for what I really wanted, friend chicken and mac and cheese and biscuits. Its not formal black tie food. I got a lot of push back from my planner and other people offering opinions but in the end I did what I wanted and it was a HUGE hit with everyone. It didn’t hurt that the food was so delicious. This is also true for the handwritten thank you notes I left at every guests place setting. A lot of people told me not to or that it would be too hard or that it would take too long. It was important to me and so I did it. It was the thing I received the most compliments on. My advice is do what you want. Its your day. Its your vision. If it will make you happy do it, if not, let it go.

Taking pictures on the pier in SF was a true highlight. Just being with Jake (and my BFF who helped with my dress and make up and was just the best friend ever) alone before the madness was nice. Also our ceremony was so special to me. A huge highlight was looking up at our guests and seeing them smiling (or crying) down at us. It was so special to be surrounded by our loved ones. It was so magical and meaningful. Our first dance was to my parents song by Billy Joel. My parents were married the same week as Jake and I 35 years prior. That was a treat. And to top it off our friend Miko sang our processional and recessional songs as well as our first dance. He added his special touches to the songs and it made it feel so much more personal. We were married by my aunt who was a judge in SF and that also really made the ceremony feel personal AND official. And we had donuts at the end of the night, because donuts are our favorite and who doesn’t want doubts at midnight?

Photography: onelove photography | Coordinator: Lisa Feldman | Floral Design: Sharla Flock Designs | Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Cake: Taste Of Denmark | Shoes: Kate Spade | Catering: Mccalls | Makeup: Anita Daniels | Ceremony And Reception: Asian Art Museum Of SF | Rentals: La Tavola | Rentals: Hartmann Studios

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
Meet SMP Blogger Bride: Mary of Memorandum!

You’ll probably recognize this pretty face, her lengthy blonde locks and fab ‘work-wear’ style as the editor behind Memorandum. She rocks a panama hat and red lip like no other, and today, we’re welcoming Mary Orton to our gorgeous team of Blogger Brides here at SMP! We’re over-the-moon excited to follow along in her wedding planning journey. Get to know Mary (and her handsome Groom-to-be) a bit better and see more of her style in the gallery from Jenny Morgan and Melanie Riccardi.

From Mary OrtonI’m the founder and editor of Memorandum, a fashion blog that’s all about style from a working gal’s perspective. I’m not talking about a bunch of grey sheath dresses and and pant suits, but seamlessly incorporating the fashion and personal style that you might typically leave for nights and weekends into your everyday! I’m a huge fan of personal style blogs, but after graduating college and starting my career in NYC, I didn’t feel like there was much out there that helped me “up” my style game during the workweek. To fill this void and speak to other professional women like me, I started Memorandum, where I tackle everything from how to make trends work-appropriate, to how to style accessories and workwear pieces casually on the weekends. This August, I’ll be tying the knot with my fiancé Rich, and I’m thrilled to join the SMP family to share all of the tips and tricks I’ve learned during the wedding planning process!

Rich and I were introduced by one of my best friends from college after we graduated and were both working for different investment banks in New York City. It wasn’t an intentional “set-up,” but when life gives you a killer eighties cover band, an aggressive dance floor, and an open bar, love has to be in the air… right? A little trash talk about our respective hometown NFL teams later (for the record, my Packers won the Super Bowl that year), and Rich asked to take me to dinner the following weekend.

We quickly became inseparable and dated in NYC for two years before work brought Rich back to San Francisco, where he’s originally from. After another two years of bi-coastal long-distance (woof), Rich came to NYC to celebrate my birthday last November. After a beautiful dinner and a Broadway show, Rich arranged for us to gain backstage entry to the Broadway Theater where we had attended our first show together four years prior. I’ve always been an enormous musical theater fan, and lucky for me, Rich developed a love for it as well after we started dating. 

Since the two of us had gone to innumerable shows together, it wasn’t tough for Rich to convince me that we were going backstage for a post-show behind-the-scenes “tour” as a little birthday surprise. However, instead of a tour, we walked onto an empty stage and he dropped to one knee as we looked out onto the completely empty, but still beautifully lit-up Broadway Theater. He had timed it perfectly with the stage managers to make sure the theater was completely empty, since he knew I wasn’t a “public proposal” kind of girl. I said yes (on the condition that we raise our children Packer fans of course) and soon after, I finally moved from NYC to join him on the left coast in San Francisco, where I now live and work.

We’re getting married this August in Wisconsin, which is where I grew up and where my family lives. Although planning from afar isn’t the easiest, the wedding process has been so much fun, and I’m excited to share all of it here on Style Me Pretty! While I’ve truly enjoyed the journey, I have to say that I did not come into the engagement with 18 wedding Pinterest boards already sketching out my future nuptials like some of my girlfriends who have been “planning their weddings” for basically their whole lives! Additionally, very few of my best friends are married already, so I haven’t had the advantage of going through the process with someone else before. I started at square one and have had so much to learn! But, with the help of resources like SMP and lots of tips from friends and family, I’ve learned so much, and hope to pass along some ideas to all of you in the coming months!

Photography: Jenny Morgan | Photography: Melanie Riccardi | Styling: Mary Orton

Finding Your Perfect Wedding Venue with L’Relyea Events + A Promotion!

Loves, meet L’Relyea Events, the talented team of venue scouting specialists that are about to take your wedding to a whole new level of amazing.  Think an entire day of venue tours, lunch and wine tasting, all guided by a planning professional that knows everything there is to know about finding the perfect locale for you and your sweetie.  Day of your dreams in one, two, three?  Yes, please.

If you’re anything like me (and I know you are), you’ve been planning your wedding day since before you were even engaged.  So finding the perfect venue to host all of the happiness?  Sooo important. That’s where L’Relyea Events comes in.  They’ll spend an entire day getting to know you and yours + your wedding vision, so that they can find a locale that best suits everything you’re looking for.  From fabulous wineries to drop-dead gorgeous ballrooms to private estates that are as romantic as they are stunning, they’ll narrow down the field to just a handful that will work well with your style AND price point.  They’ll even follow up with detailed info on each venue you visit, with helpful notes and suggestions.  It’s awesome.

So what are you waiting for, m’dears?  Contact L’Relyea Events today to book your venue scouting experience.  You’ll love their never-ending attention to detail and their ability to paint the picture of how your wedding weekend/day will go.  And don’t forget to ask them about their planning services for a day that is pure perfection… and then some.

Promotion

For their 2015 brides, L’Relyea Events is offering 50% off the Venue Scouting Package! And if you are recently engaged and looking to get hitched in 2016, L’Relyea Events has something for you, too! With the purchase of their “Un” Planning Service Package, they would like to offer you 25% off your Venue Scouting Package when booked by December 31, 2015!

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Sweet San Francisco City Hall Elopement

The one regret that I have about not attending my senior prom at San Francisco’s City Hall is that I wasn’t able to spend time in such a stunning architectural gem. As this sweet elopement, captured by Jasmine Lee Photography, proves, City Hall is the perfect backdrop for an equally gorgeous couple. And the details—the Bride’s clutch, the bright bouquet, and the couple’s stylish outfits—make it all that much more special. Take in all the pretty here.

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Spring
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City Hall

From the beautiful Bride… When I thought about my dream wedding, it was always just the two of us. The idea of eloping felt so romantic and intimate and in the end it was just perfect for us. Once we had decided to elope, San Francisco City Hall just felt right. I loved the idea of running away to get married at city hall and there isn’t a more beautiful city hall than San Francisco’s. Even though it was just the two of us, my family and friends sent me off with some wonderful mementos that made the day really special, including a lovely vintage blue handkerchief (something blue), a beautiful mirror for touch-ups (something new), my mother’s sapphire earrings, and my grandmother’s sapphire and diamond ring (something old and borrowed… and blue, too). The whole day was pretty emotional. I cried getting my makeup done that morning and during the ceremony, but after the ceremony I felt so effervescently happy!

Since we eloped, having photos to share with our family and friends was really important to us. We found our photographer, makeup/hair, and flowers online and they were all amazing! I even ordered my shoes and dress online. We’re so happy with how everything came out!

The rest of the day was wonderful too. After we left city hall, we hopped in a cab and went to a great bakery recommended to us by some local friends, Tartine, for some cake, of course! We finished off the day walking through beautiful San Francisco, sharing an umbrella on a rare rainy day, and introducing my new husband to my favorite pizza in the whole world (Escape from New York!). It was the perfect day!

Photography: Jasmine Lee Photography | Floral Design: Church Street Flowers | Wedding Dress: Diane Von Furstenberg | Shoes: Stuart Weitzman | Hair & Makeup: Susie Chhour | Groom's Suit: Brooks Brothers | Venue: San Francisco City Hall | Bride's Jewelry: Borrowed/Heirloom | Clutch: Kate Spade

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