From a ukelele serenaded proposal to a vintage secret garden-inspired soiree that took place at the Groom’s childhood home, this L.A. affair is enchanting to say the least. Designed by the ultimate DIY Bride and now owner of House Of Hartt, every inch of detailing was hand selected and chosen with love. For even more, head to the pretty gallery from The Youngrens!
From the beautiful Bride… Josh and I met on eHarmony, myself, I had only been on there for two weeks, so luckily I didn’t have to go through a slew of bad dates before finding Josh. Just 6 months in we went on our first vacation in Kauai, and by then I already knew he was the one. 3 years from our very first date we found ourselves back in Kauai again for our annual summer vacation, but this time it was different. Josh had purchased a new camera that he had been filming me do almost everything on, including eating and walking, so when he decided to leave the camera rolling overnight to “catch the sunrise” I didn’t question his motives. The next morning on our 3 year anniversary he woke me at 6:30 by opening the wall of curtains revealing the brightest ocean view. I immediately rolled over trying to go back to sleep. He finally was able to coax me to come to the edge of the bed, just barely awake he begins to serenade me with his ukulele (not unusual by the way). I start noticing though this time his voice is shaking, he actually seemed nervous which is not the norm. After finishing up 1,2,3,4 by Plain White Tees and a couple restarts of the song, he gets down on one knee and asks the question I had been waiting to hear almost 2 1/2 years ago! To make it even more perfect he surprised me with a serenade at our wedding! Which I was completely blown away by! He sings in front of me all the time, but never in front of an audience – an audience turns him a bit shy and bashful. But not on the day of our wedding! He was so confident and charming. He chose the song Stuck on You by Lionel Richie, which was a perfect song given I did feel like I had waited so long to become his Mrs.. It was perfect, right out of a movie.
As far as choosing our venue, we had quite the adventure! We first forfeited our deposit on the original venue we had booked. A few weeks in we had realized we had gotten ourselves into a very expensive situation and decided to cut our losses and move on. And although we did have a tight budget I didn’t want to compromise the elegance and warmth of the wedding I had envisioned in my head. I knew that if we could just find the right place we could make it our own and DIY it! After looking at almost every venue in Los Angeles and Ventura county, we revisited a thought we had in the very beginning, having it at Josh’s moms house – the very house he grew up in. Aesthetically it was everything I wanted anyways: lush gardens, mature trees hanging over you, organic and intimate, like you had just entered into a secret garden. The only reason we had veered away in the beginning was because it would have forced us to cut our guest list in half. But, it ended up being worth it, and I think ultimately it was meant to be. We had an intimate wedding of about 75 of all of our closest friends and family and a FREE venue! Plus the fact that Josh grew up in the house and that we of course go to his moms house all the time is a huge bonus! We get to stand in the very spot we got married in as often as we like.
The inspiration for the wedding from the very beginning was ‘vintage secret garden’. I didn’t want anything too forced, too formal, too matchy-matchy and definitely as far away from the typical ballroom or wedding hall. I wanted it to look like we just had all these things inside of our house, old family heirlooms, tapestries and mismatched crystal vases, things we had had for years, that we just sort of threw together at the very last minute to create an inviting, beautiful and mystical space. Of course, that wasn’t the case at all. The reality is I went on a hunt for about 8 months through every salvation army, good will store, antique store and craigslist ad to collect almost every single piece by hand. And just to make it even more esthetically fun, we had all of our guests dress to the nines in black tie attire. It was formal and informal all at the same time. I absolutely loved creating this space so much so it inspired me to continue sharing this experience through House of Hartt Rentals & Design, a boutique vintage rental and design company.
Photography: The Youngrens | Videography: Grover House | Coordination: Orange Dove Events | Floral Design: Kitchen12000 | Wedding Dress: Elie Saab For Pronovias | Cake: A Sweet Design | Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas | Bridesmaids Dresses: Panache Bridal | Catering: Kitchen 12000 | Makeup Artist: Liciouss Maquillage | Hair: Dreamcatcher Artistry | Lighting: Pacific Coast Lighting | DJ: DJ Tru | Grooms Attire: The Groom's Valet | Groomsmen Attire: The Groom's Valet | Venue: Private Estate | Gown Boutique: Pebbles Bridal | Rental & Design Company: House Of Hartt Rentals & Design | Rentals: Party Works