In my years of wedding blogging, I’ve come to believe Santa Barbara is the perfect spot to marry. You’ve got endless sunshine, scenery for days, and of course, many of the best wedding vendors (like Michael + Anna Costa, Lilla Bello and Pure Joy Catering) happen to call that region home. Along with an entire team of talent, they brought the couple’s vision of an intimate, elegant, al fresco affair to life. Watch the day unfold this way in the gallery.
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From the Bride… This by far was one of the best days of my life and it wouldn’t have been such a flawless day without the work of an incredible wedding team to help make it happen. A little back story, Phil and I got engaged in August of 2015 and set our date for April 1, 2016. We both wanted a very small intimate wedding in Santa Barbara with only the people who had been a huge part of our relationship. We wanted a small wedding over a large wedding because we wanted it to feel personal so we could spend time with all to thank them for their love and support over the years. In working with Donna Romani Events (DRE) over the course of the short 8 months she helped bring our vision to life. Donna helped prioritize what was most important to us- venue, photography, flowers and everything else fell smoothly into place.
The venue we chose, Villa Verano located in the foothills of Santa Barbara was not only the perfect location for an intimate affair but it had a very special meaning to me as my brother had gotten married there four years earlier. I had fallen in love with the view, the home, the grounds and the meaning it would now have to our family. We both knew we wanted a venue where we would be able to have the ceremony, cocktail and reception and the property offered just that with three different levels throughout the grounds. Once Phil saw the villa and we added the meaning on top of it we knew this was it!
Prioritizing the photography honestly was one or our best decisions. If I have any advice for a bride planning- get an incredible photographer and it’s worth every penny for two reasons. One, you spend most of the day with your photographer. Two, they are a part of some of the most intimate, raw moments and you have to feel comfortable to share this with someone other than your spouse. Michael + Anna Costa Photography and specifically Michael Costa are fantastic. I couldn’t have been happier spending the day with someone not only incredibly talented as him but also his energy, calming demeanor and presence was exactly what we had hoped for. My husband and I both agree, he was a huge part of making our day so special not only because he captured every moment perfectly but he truly became a part of our family that day.
The flowers were also very important to me as my mother is a florist and flowers have been a huge part of my life. In working with Toby Kassoy from Lilla Bello in Santa Monica she took our color scheme, favorite flowers and made some of the most beautiful arrangements that brought every piece of the evening to life from my bouquet, to the ceremony, the cocktail hour to our reception. One of my other favorite parts of the planning outside of the flowers was our dessert table. Being that my husband is British and I am part French we wanted to create a “Battle of the Desserts” table and Lele Patisserie created us desserts from each country and with the design eye of DRE and flowers the theme was captured through a gorgeous, fun and delicious table.
Outside of the key planning pieces our wedding was flawless. The intimate and elegant design and flow of each part of the day was beyond my expectations. It’s funny as you plan you have this idea of what everything will look like and how it will go but once you are actually in the midst, trust your team and let go of all control it is truly amazing. The day holds a special meaning, goes so fast that all the details become secondary. Once I fell into what the day means I found myself lost in emotion. I made sure to take a few moments to step back and take it all in and I’d give that advice to any bride to be. One of my favorite memories was sitting with my husband at our sweetheart table with the sun setting behind us and looking at all our friends and family toasting our love and life. I couldn’t help but feel overwhelmed that every person here got to be a part of my favorite love story including the bundle of joy who was 12 weeks old in my belly.
Photography: Michael + Anna Costa Photography | Coordination: Donna Romani Events | Floral Design: Lilla Bello | Catering: Pure Joy Catering | Venue: Villa Verano | Babysitting: Mummy's Day Off | Brides Hair + Makeup: Luna Bella Beauty | Cake/ Desserts: Lele's Patisserie | Ceremony/ Cocktail Music: Jesse Macleod | Reception Music: Gavin Roy | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals