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Sunny Elings Park Wedding

In wedding-land, you just can’t beat the natural sunlight that shines down on SoCal. It’s crisp, yet soft and oh-so-romantic. And Michael & Anna Costa always capture it so beautifully. Case in point? This sweet al fresco love fest coordinated by Felici Events. Filled to the brim with succulents, gorgeous views and smiles galore, its easy to get lost in all the pretty.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Park
Styles
Elegance

From the beautiful Bride… Hartley and I like to joke that we met through Craigslist. (Only semi-true.) One fortuitous 4th of July, I went over to my friend Scott’s house to hang with him and a bunch of our friends. After a mimosa or two, out waltzes his newest Craigslist roommate, a cute guy named Hartley. I’d like to say that was the beginning of our beautiful relationship, but it took some gentle cajoling from Scott and polite persistence from Hartley to get me on a real date. But one real date later, I was head-over-heels for my guy.

Three short years later, Hartley and I were married on June 22nd at Elings Park in beautiful Santa Barbara. Being from North Dakota and he from North Carolina, but both of us long-time Angelenos, we wanted to show our faraway family and friends just why we loved California so much. We wanted an outdoor venue simply because we adore the beauty of SoCal. Elings Park (Godric Grove, to be specific) was our venue from the moment we stepped foot into the park. Gorgeous views, pristine grounds, nature everywhere… it was perfect.

For our day, we knew we wanted it to be simple, we wanted it to be “us” and we wanted it to be a big ol’ love fest. Anything else would be icing on the cake. The wedding turned out to be more incredible than either of us ever imagined it could be. Our fabulous coordinator, Zohe Felici (Felici Events,) made that day so very stress-free. We showed up to the venue and were wowed by all the work she and her staff had done. She took all of our simple ideas and made them beautiful. All of our vendors added something spectacular to the event: our photographer, Anna Costa, was marvelous. She got spectacular photos and didn’t keep us from our guests for any longer than necessary. Our caterers, (Island View Catering,) kept the crowd happy and kept us better fed than any bride and groom in the history of weddings. Our DJ, (Music by Bonnie,) had put up with all our odd requests and handled the mood of the party from pre-ceremony through reception.

And above all else, our friends and family helped make it what it was. My long-time best friend officiated for us; Hartley’s dad, an incredible musician, played a very personal guitar solo during our ceremony; we asked our aunts/uncles and god parents to stand and share some marital wisdom before we said our vows. One of Hartley’s work friends who had been married at Godric Grove rented us her succulent centerpieces that she had used at her wedding, the perfect California touch. My bouquet was wrapped with Chantilly lace that my Grandmother had worn on her veil when she married my Grandfather. Hartley’s dance with his mother was the best twist-ing any of us had ever seen. Our decorations consisted of photos and our RSVP postcards where our guests had drawn pictures and written poems and sweet notes. It was so full of love and had been made so easy by everyone involved, it left us able to simply enjoy every moment.

It’s been almost a year since that day and I can remember every second of it as if it happened yesterday.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Anna Costa | Floral Design: Simply Bouquets | Catering: Island View Catering | Make-Up: La Rouge Artistry | Hair: Saralisa At Mon Amie | Lighting: The Tent Merchant | Coordination: Felici Events | Music: Music By Bonnie | Rentals: The Tent Merchant | Rentals: Marborg | Transportation: Pipeline Transportation | Wedding Venue: Elings Park

Michael + Anna Costa Photography and Felici Events are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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Romantic Montecito Country Club Wedding

This Bride had quite the challenge set out for her when she had a vision to fuse her Korean heritage, Georgia and Missouri upbringing, the Groom’s lakehouse upbringing and Southern California all together for their wedding. But the result is complete perfection of them. Sprinkled with cotton bolls, desert plants, peaches and ocean blues, the imagery from Michael & Anna Costa Photography says it all. See every lovely bit here.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Country Club
Styles
Elegance

From the beautiful Bride… Ryan and I love to joke about the honest fact that had we met out at a bar or event, we wouldn’t have ever given each other second glances. But thanks to the magic of the internet and online dating websites, Ryan and I came together while he was living in Newport Beach and I was living in San Diego but transitioning for a move back to San Francisco. I never made it to San Francisco after I took a few more than a couple of glances at him and fell in love! We spent nine months planning our wedding and tried to find the perfect way to showcase the unique combination of each of our families and backgrounds – and do it in the most fun way possible!

Ryan is blond haired and blue eyed, grew up in in the same house in Lake Arrowhead (a small mountain town in Southern California), and is the middle child in a close-knit family. On the other side of the spectrum, I’m half Korean and half Caucasian, was raised by my father in the south (but lived in 10 different cities and two different countries growing up), and have just one younger brother. I had this crazy notion that I could somehow incorporate each unique quality of our upbringing into our wedding experience…and thanks to our amazing vendors and the beautiful venue at the Montecito Country Club in Santa Barbara, everything came together better than I could have ever had hoped for!

We chose Santa Barbara, as it had a special meaning for us as the first place we snuck away to for a get-away while dating. The Montecito Country Club, with its laid back vibe, elegant Spanish architecture, and sprawling ocean views, was an instant and obvious choice for us. With its classic but dramatic design and setting, there was very little that I felt was needed to make it look more beautiful than it already was.

After running into some obstacles with our event coordinator, things were unexpectedly left in my hands to pull together the wedding that we had envisioned, but thanks to some very talented vendors, my “down-home” ambitions were elevated to a level far beyond what I could have hoped for! My goal was to blend Ryan’s upbringing in Lake Arrowhead, my childhood in Georgia and Missouri, my Korean heritage, and our union in Southern California. I envisioned peaches, cotton bolls, desert plants, and oceanic blues – all tied together with a casual and untraditional, yet sophisticated feel. Anyone else would have called me crazy, but our floral designer, Tenley Erin Young, didn’t even flinch and pulled the whole look together flawlessly with her centerpieces and floral arrangements. Tenley brought together raw cotton, fresh peaches, dainty succulents, anemones, roses and peonies in a way that can only be described as “genius.” Most everything else was DIY; I made the invitation suite myself and incorporated its design into the programs, menus, favors and other DIY decor. The favors were hand-made potted succulents that aimed to pay homage to Ryan’s roots in Lake Arrowhead. I adorned them with little flags so that they could double as table cards.

TEAM Hair and Makeup did an incredible job with the hair and make-up of my ethnically diverse bridesmaids. I had fallen in love with all the TEAM features on Style Me Pretty, and I felt lucky to have them as my glamour squad that day. TEAM also made the great recommendation of Michael + Anna Costa Photography as our wedding photographers. We got a preview of working with Anna through our engagement photography shoot, and got the warm-in-the-gut feeling that we were going to be in good hands. Anna is just so into her couples and was really, truly interested in getting to know us. Thanks to that, there was nothing cookie-cutter about our photos, and she was able to capture the true elements of us, our love, and the happiness being shared between family and friends.

We wanted a quick and painless ceremony, so that our guests could get to the FUN part! Our guests were bussed in and were greeted by the live music of Trevor Zinn, a friend of ours in Orange County and a very talented acoustic guitarist. Keeping it non-traditional, the wedding party walked in to Carry Underwood’s “Mama’s Song,” and I walked in to Joshua Radin’s “Only You.” My father is deceased, so I had the honor of being escorted down the aisle by my baby brother, Eugene. Ryan’s brother, Kyle, served as the Best Man, and his sister, Lindsey, did a reading. After a wonderful ceremony officiated by Jon Ireland in front of a big bay window overlooking the Pacific, we exited to Weezer’s “Island in the Sun.” Guests were then able to head out to the formal lawn area and catch the setting sun while enjoying cocktail hour and playing lawn games.

After dinner, it was time for dancing! Ryan’s one specification was that we have an incredible band, and MGA Band did not disappoint. After the scheduled dances, the band kicked-off group dancing, as flip flops, tambourines, and prop instruments were brought out for the guests. The girls got down to a lip sync’d rendition of Whitney Houston’s “Count on Me,” which morphed into a dance off to Salt-n-Pepa’s “Push It.” Being that Ryan is half Jewish, we naturally did the the Horah – but being that I am half Korean, we put our own twist on it by doing it to the tune of “Gangnam Style.” For the cutting of the cake, my mother and I changed into traditional Korean dresses, called Hanbok. I was assisted by my mom and two of her sisters during the dressing, one of which had traveled all the way from Korea to attend the festivities. It meant a lot to me to pay homage to my mom and to that side of my heritage.

The night concluded with Ryan and his fraternity brothers “shooting the boot,” a long-standing Sigma Nu traditional where the groom is forced to drink a concoction of all his friends’ leftover drinks from one lucky groomsman’s shoe. Looking back on the whirlwind night, Ryan and I could not be more grateful for all the work that everyone did to make this an exceptional night that celebrated our love, our family, our friends, and allowed us to stay true to ourselves.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Anna Costa | Videographer: Visual Masterpiece | Floral Design: Tenley Erin Young | Wedding Dress: Augusta Jones | Cake: Your Cake Baker | Cake: Wayne Kjar Cakes | Shoes: BCBG Max Azaria | Rings: Tacori | Bridesmaids Dresses: Something Borrowed | Catering: Seasons Catering | Lighting: Bella Vista Designs | Ceremony Music: Trevor Zinn | Bride's Belt & Bracelet: Rent The Runway | Day Of Coordination: Lindsey Hartsough | Hair And Make-Up: TEAM Hair And Makeup | Officiant : Jon Ireland | Reception Music: MGA Band | Rentals: Magnolia Event Design | Transportation: Santa Barbara Airbus | Wedding Venue: Montecito Country Club

Augusta Jones is a member of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here. TEAM Hair and Makeup and Michael + Anna Costa Photography are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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Spring Polo Club Wedding

I’m a firm believer that the venue sets the tone for a wedding. Whether you find your venue first or decide on a style and vision right away—the venue is oh-so-important in translating the look and feel of your day. And this Santa Barbara Polo Club wedding from Michael & Anna Costa Photography couldn’t be a better example. It emits elegance in such an effortless way. With Grass Roots and Events By M And M behind all the lovely touches, it’s easy to see why. Hop on over to the gallery for even more!

Colors
Seasons
Spring
Settings
OutdoorTent
Styles
Romantic

From the beautiful Bride… Jim and I met in San Francisco in 2010 through mutual friends at a BBQ and were instantly drawn to one another. We quickly found ourselves spending all of our free time together and talking about the future. Within the year we had moved in together. A year and a half after we met, he surprised me by proposing in the rain while on my favorite hike in Marin County. Three months later, we moved to Philadelphia for Jim’s job and our planning became long distance as we both wanted to wed in California (thank goodness for our planner!). Though we initially thought the wedding would take place in San Francisco, it took only one seventy-five degree April day in Santa Barbara (where Jim’s parents live) to realize that it would provide the perfect indoor/outdoor venue for us. More than anything, we wanted our wedding to be a great party with family and friends. To us, this meant having a casual, yet elegant atmosphere with good food, drinks, and dancing.

The Santa Barbara Polo & Racquet Club provided the ideal back drop and required very little decoration to enhance its natural beauty, of which our florist and planner did an incredible job collaborating upon. We liked the Club’s sense of tradition and simplicity, and played upon the polo theme by giving guests the option of wearing derby hats and garb. My bridesmaids wore emerald green dresses in different styles. Jim wore a navy suit, while his groomsmen wore suits in varying shades of gray with navy and white polka dotted ties. The day of our April wedding was the warmest of the year and the scenic surroundings did not disappoint. I loved that a majority of the female guests donned fascinators and that people enjoyed our signature drinks of rosemary-infused greyhounds, mint juleps and wine from a local winery featuring our own label; a wedding gift from Jim’s parents. Hats off to the Polo Club as well for allowing our photographers to capture memorable one-on-one shots with a polo pony and equipment. For us, it was perfect.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Michael Costa | Event Design: Events By M And M | Floral Design: Grass Roots | Caterer: DUO Catering | Hair And Make-Up: Bliss Bridal Beauty | Live Music & DJ: Mike West | Rentals: The Tent Merchant | Wedding Venue: SB Polo Club

Michael + Anna Costa Photography and Grass Roots are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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