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Glamorous Santa Barbara Wedding

The epitome of glamour, this gorgeous Santa Barbara wedding will blow your mind.  Think I’m being a bit hyperbolic?  I’m not.  Because this, my friends, is what happens when sophisticated details join forces with lush florals from Toast, a fabulous Gucci gown and a breathtaking El Encanto setting.  See every awe-inspiring moment captured by Rebecca Fishman for Birds Of A Feather in the full gallery.

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From the Bride… I own my own boutique PR firm, JZPR, and Kris is a footwear designer. Introduced by a mutual friend at a charity gala, we had our first date two days later and have been inseparable ever since – quite the whirlwind romance! Since we’re both longtime Santa Barbara residents, we chose to be married at the newly restored El Encanto, an early 20th-century hotel that is quintessentially Santa Barbara and exudes the romantic and glamorous vibe we were looking for.

I chose not to wear a traditional wedding dress, instead finding a show-stopping Gucci evening gown that made me feel like a glamorous movie star of old. I wore Manolo Blahnik heels and a combination of Erickson Beamon jewels mixed with my mother’s heirloom pieces. Kris looked dashing in a Tom Ford tuxedo, shoes by Prada, and hook + ALBERT accessories.

We kept things very small with a private, family only ceremony that took place on the terrace of El Encanto’s Oak Tree Suite (which prior to the recent renovation was called the Presidential Suite, named for President Franklin Roosevelt after he stayed there). Immediately following the ceremony we welcomed the rest of our guests at the property’s storied Arbor, where we toasted around the lily pond with delicious Bellinis. From there, the party moved to an upstairs terrace where we enjoyed cocktails, dinner and dancing, soaking in the sweeping view of the Pacific Ocean and the twinkling lights of Santa Barbara below. The unexpected surprise visitor of the evening was the Super Moon that we watched rise over the town, casting an enchanted glow upon the night… An omen of good things to come, for sure!

Photography: Rebecca Fishman For Birds Of A Feather | Floral Design: Toast | Wedding Dress: Gucci | Shoes: Manolo Blahnik | Jewelry: Erickson Beamon | Catering: El Encanto | Hair: Mishay Salon & Spa | DJ: DJ Fab | Groom's Attire: Tom Ford | Makeup: Ana Paula Zwirn | Resort: El Encanto

TOAST Santa Barbara is a member of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
TOAST Santa Barbara

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Santa Barbara Day After Shoot

All couples considering day after shoots – look no further. Just look at these photos from Chelsea Mitchell – you get a abundant sampling of the prettiness, but there’s a sharper focus on the bride and groom with none of the stress of squeezing it in on your wedding day. Besides, it’d be a shame not to capture this bride’s stunning Vera Wang gown and florals from Trace Robinson, right?


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From the Bride… When Chelsea Mitchell said yes to shooting our day after wedding shoot we could not have been more excited! We absolutely love her use of film and her artistic eye! Ryan and I originally met on this same beach playing volleyball seven years ago. We thought it would be fun to revisit the location where we first met to take our first newlywed photos. Our goal with these photos was to to capture our long lasting love in artistic portraits that we could frame and keep on our walls for many years to come.

Photography: Chelsea Mitchell | Floral Design: Trace Robinson | Wedding Gown: Vera Wang, "Lark" | Groom's Attire: Ted Baker | Santa Barbara Beach: Leadbetter

Al Fresco Wedding in Santa Barbara

Insanely romantic tidbit of the day? This sweet couple shared their first kiss high up in the Himalayas after a group hike to Mt. Everest Base Camp. Swoon. So, it’s no surprise when they made the decision to tie the knot five years later, they did it in style. With Michael & Anna Costa Photography behind the lens, this gallery is a glimpse into all the romance.

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From Michael and Anna Costa PhotographyDan and Lauren met in December of 2008 in Kathmandu, Nepal, where they joined the same tour group to hike to Mt. Everest Base Camp.  Dan is originally from Birmingham, England, and Lauren is originally from Bakersfield, California (but was living in Los Angeles at the time), so it seemed like fate that they both happened to travel alone to the same distant city on the same dates with the same goal. These exotic circumstances meant that Dan & Lauren’s first date was kind of a group date (there were 8 other travelers on the hike, plus guides and sherpas, who were with them at all times), and it lasted for almost 12 straight days.  Instead of the traditional flowers, the first gifts that Dan gave Lauren were a piece of string to tie her solar battery charger onto the back of her backpack, and an extra roll of toilet paper, since she had been suffering from food poisoning the first week of the hike and had run low on her own supply!  Since they had no privacy amongst the group on the hike (and no showers for 9 days of the trip), all they could do was walk, talk, laugh and learn a whole lot about one another.  Although Dan didn’t work up the courage to make a romantic move until almost the end of their journey, they shared their first kiss in Lukla (high up in the Himalayas), and after the pair parted ways in Kathmandu on New Years’ Eve, Dan was smitten enough that he booked a trip to California and came to visit Lauren in L.A. the week after she returned home. He met her parents on that trip, then she went straight back to England 2 weeks later to meet his family, and they realized things were serious.

Over the next few years, Dan and Lauren took turns giving up their homes/lives/friends and moving overseas to keep the relationship going – Lauren first quit her law firm job in L.A. and moved to England with her dog, George, in June 2009 for almost a year, then Lauren’s UK visa ran out, and in late 2010 Dan sold his electrical company in England and moved to California to try out the beach life.  After struggling with immigration issues and enduring some long gaps of time apart, they decided to get engaged and remain in California to begin their life as a married couple.

Although they were officially married in San Francisco nearly a year earlier for immigration purposes (with only the bride’s friend, Cara, as a witness), the wedding celebration in Montecito was the first time Dan and Lauren’s parents were able to meet one another during their 5-year romance. Dan and Lauren agreed the wedding day was magical, and a great way to bring the English and American families together. The private Montecito home where the wedding was held is owned by the bride’s mother and step-father (and was completed just prior to the wedding), so the bride’s mother worked tirelessly to finish up all of the landscaping and home decor in time for the big day! The home may be available to rent for weddings and other special celebrations in the future, so stay tuned!

Dan and Lauren now reside in Venice, CA, with their 2 dogs, George & Mia, where they are remodeling their new home. While he is not out training for and competing in triathlons and marathons, Dan is working on setting up a new electrical contracting company in L.A., while Lauren works as a commercial real estate lawyer for a small firm in Santa Monica.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Anna Costa | Event Planning: Davia Lee Weddings & Events | Floral Design: Grassroots | Cake: Sweet Surrender Bakersfield | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Catering: Seasons Catering | Band: DNA Band | Desserts: Crushcakes | Desserts: Vanilla Bake Shop | Hair And Make-Up: Shine Blow Dry Bar | Lighting Design: Ambient Event Design | Linens: La Tavola | Rentals: Ventura Party Rentals | Rentals: Party Pleasers | Transportation: Greg At EOS | Transportation : Limo Link | Venue: Private Residence

La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, Michael + Anna Costa Photography, Grass Roots and Ambient Event Design are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
La Tavola Fine Linen Rental

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Michael & Anna Costa Photograp...

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Grass Roots

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Ambient Event Design

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