Simplicity is probably my favorite style. Don’t get me wrong, I’ll swoon over a ballroom wedding in a hot second – but show me a wedding where love is the greatest detail of all, and I’ll show you one happy blogger. Because that’s when the real details have room to shine. Take for instance, this Puerto Vallarta wedding captured by Rouxby. Just a simple candlelit party, where all the guests were groomsmen or bridesmaids on some of the prettiest beaches in Mexico – all centering around two people head over heels in love. Simplicity has never looked more fabulous, and you can see it all right here.
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From Rouxby… This simple wedding kept true to who the couple is, while paying homage to the Mexican beach on which it took place. The guests were all bridesmaids and groomsmen of sort; they all wore black attire (most of the girls’ dresses made by the bride’s mother) and created a kind of cohesion in the wedding guests that did indeed feel like a wedding party in attendance. The ceremony and reception took place on a beach impossible to get to by car. The bride, her mother and grandmother (three generations) took a boat over early and relaxed in a mountaintop open-air cottage, enjoying champagne and simple seafood from the bay below.
The guests and the groom arrived by boat shortly before the ceremony commenced at sunset. The entire beach and hacienda where dinner was served was lit only by candlelight. Hundreds of tea light candles lined pathways and tables. The bride’s flowers were the bright tropical pinks and oranges that are at home in the jungle environment. The simple, well-made tables and chairs were constructed by local villagers, and all of the food – even tortillas and breads – were made on site. The bride’s mother made ceramic sea creatures that lined the table, but aside from that there were only flowers and candlelight for decor.
The bride and groom themselves were simply dressed. The bride wore her great grandmother’s antique earrings and necklace; a something old and something blue all in one. The dress was simple; her shoes were sandals or none at all. After a candlelight dinner, guests moved to a bonfire on the beach below and danced until the boat docked to take them back to hotels. This wedding was delightful in its simplicity. The power of candlelight; of a truly breathtaking location; of a simple dress code for intimate guests — it all created an incredibly beautiful, old-fashioned evening. A reminder that well-placed simplicity–and a priority of who attends and where–can be all you need.
With a little slice of Mexico, a big dose of this couple’s personal style and a gorgeous fireworks display at the end of the night, this wedding has magic (and fiesta!) written all over it. This crew knows how to have fun, and it’s impossible not to be moved by the love and emotion in the air. Casa Garza Blanca is a stunning venue, and when it’s lit up with lights at night, WOAH. Everything comes to life! Bundles of thanks to the amazingly talented Socorro Sandoval and Eric James Photography for the full gallery of images that you’ll find here.
From the Bride… Donovan and I spent a week in Mismaloya in May of 2011. We are both lovers of Mexico and have both vacationed there a few times a year even prior to meeting one another. I was thrilled to see a part of Mexico that I had no idea existed. It was lush, green, tropical and had so much cultural history. It could be as rural or as luxurious as you wanted — truly a gem for two people who lead busy lives and appreciate the simple moments. Mother Nature has gone above and beyond in the Bay of Banderas! The day after we returned from our trip and were unpacking the new home that we had purchased and left in disarray for a little rest and relaxation, Donovan proposed! Immediately, we both knew exactly where we were getting married, and the planning began. There was never hesitation to have a destination wedding because we wanted to share this place with the friends and family that bring laughter, joy, compassion, support and love to our lives. Our intent was to make this not only a wedding for us, but also a vacation for everyone! We invited 72 people and to our surprise, 58 of them immediately replied YES.
Finding a planner was the next step, and I stumbled upon The Dazzling Details on a website that I was getting daily emails from. Instantly I knew that they were the company that we had to hire! Although we wanted our wedding to be in a location outside of the US, we also knew that the vision we had was very American. Immediately Kristin and Michelle worked with us by agreeing to make a special exception and plan two weddings in one weekend — had we known how elaborate our wedding would be, we would never have asked this of them! We were beyond impressed at their ability to capture “us” on our special day.
On the wedding day, I walked into Casa Garza Blanca and was stopped speechless in my tracks. I had never seen the venue in person, and as if that was not enough to take in, I found myself holding back tears as I looked around at what The Dazzling Details team had created. The word that I often use to describe it is “magical.” I literally was without words and had to catch my breath. I felt as if I was the luckiest bride in the most beautiful place in the world at that moment. There was not a detail left undone. I was not a “simple” bride but a “more is more” bride. The Dazzling Details went out of their way to give me every option from the ceremony furniture, BIG flowers, bling, classic romance, candles, fireworks, two cakes, plenty of yummy goodies, a cigar roller, fire dancers and a late night taco cart. The staff was amazing to our guests, and the dance floor was never empty! Our planners were” invisible” throughout the wedding day, making themselves inconspicuous while overseeing every detail and ensuring that everything went off without a hitch. There is not a detail that Donovan and I would change, and we are thankful everyday for the wedding of our dreams!
From The Dazzling Details… Suzi and Donovan first contacted us in October after having visited Puerto Vallarta, their original venue and wedding team. They had determined that their already-in-place-wedding-plans for late February simply didn’t fit with what they envisioned! We happily hopped on board and went into high-gear planning to pull together an amazing celebration in just a few months! We found them a new venue, booked a new team of vendors and worked intensely with them to have a clear understanding of the ambiance they wanted to create for their wedding day, and the end result was fantastic!
Wedding Photography: Socorro Sandoval + Eric James Photography / Wedding Venue: Casa Garza Blanca in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico / Wedding Coordination, Floral + Event Design: The Dazzling Details / Officiant: Tamara Bradley of Puerto Vallarta Wedding Officiants / Wedding Cinematography: Ray Dion of Promovision PV / Catering: B&B Banquetes / Wedding Cake, Groom’s Cake, Groom’s Cookies + Fruit Tarts: Charme Reposteria / Taco al Pastor Cart: Don Juan / Sweets Buffet: Naef Catering / Wedding Invitations: Photo Card Chef / DJ: Sonido Extassis / Fireworks: Victor Zagal / Fire Dancers: Biosfera / Cigar Rolling: Leopoldo Ponce / Accommodations: Barcelo Resort & Spa / Wedding Dress: Amy Kuschel / Bride’s Reception Dress: Betsy & Adam via Nordstrom / Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Bride’s Flip Flops: Tommy Bahama / Hair + Makeup: Sebastian Salon / Bridesmaid’s Dress: Cache / Bridesmaid’s Reception Dress: Priscilla of Boston (Now Closed) / Groom’s Attire: Jos. A. Bank / Groom’s Shoes: To Boot via Nordstrom
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File this one under “picture perfect” and “amazing places,” because this is a wedding that you will want to reference again and again. Nate Broshot at License to Still (we will never get over that name!) captured this incredible, modern wedding designed by The Dazzling Details with photographs fit for an editorial. It doesn’t hurt that the bride is already drop dead gorgeous and has a radiant smile to boot. Get your Monday morning going with some more serious eye candy in the gallery right here.
From the Bride… Will and I met in “Intro to Petroleum Engineering” my first semester at LSU. I am terrible with names but remember making a mental note to not forget his. We would have classes together for the next four years — he was smart and would make a good study buddy. It never crossed my mind that I had just met my husband. We happily studied and dated our way through college and both moved to Houston after graduation. After almost six years together, Will surprised me one casual night after dinner at home and asked me to marry him! After many happy, incoherent noises, I accepted!
We immediately thought of a destination wedding. We love to travel and wanted to have a relaxed, fun experience with our loved ones. Puerto Vallarta was decided on as the perfect spot: an easy direct flight from Houston, amazing weather and a wonderful, authentic vibe. I wanted our wedding to feel fresh, contemporary and chic, which perfectly suited our modern villa venue. After many fun hours scouring SMP, Kristin of The Dazzling Details and I started to pull together an inspiration board that perfectly summed up everything I envisioned. It was very important to us for our wedding to be personal and representative of our lives. Some of my favorite elements were the lace from my mother’s wedding dress incorporated around and into my bouquet as tiny lace flowers, the Champagne Julep signature cocktail direct from our favorite restaurant in Houston to PV!, and Will and I making our respective entrances to contemporary songs that our harpist learned for the ceremony.
The entire weekend was amazing, but the wedding day was perfection. The final design completely blew us (and everyone else) away; The Dazzling Details had completely outdone themselves. Our photographer, Nate Broshot of License to Still, blended seamlessly with our guests (and amazed everyone with his memory for names). Will and I felt completely enveloped in joy and well wishes from our friends and family — you could almost touch the good will! My favorite part of the day was our vows that we had written together. Promising the rest of our lives together in such an unbelievable setting is a memory I will always cherish.
Okay, I’m just going to come right out and say it. I have total wedding envy. This Puerto Vallarta wedding is insanely gorgeous and is filled with so many charming and pretty details, it’s hard to believe this was all planned from another country. Huge, huge props go out to the fab ladies at The Dazzling Details for putting together this beachy yet rustic yet totally chic fete. There are seriously so many fabulous elements to mention, but maybe my fav is the cute little attendants that greeted guests with flower cones. Totally adorable! I could go on and on, but I’ll let the gorgeous images by KLK Photography do the talking. Click here for more.
From the Bride… At first, the only thing Justin and I were certain about for our wedding was that we wanted to get married. Well, that and he knew he wanted a delicious square cake! So at the beginning of our engagement, with only the cake part down and feeling overwhelmed with planning a wedding celebration, Justin and I decided to come up with a list of elements that we would really love to have on our special day: outdoors, relaxed, beautiful area and venue, warm temperature, personal and fun! With our shared love for traveling, we felt a destination wedding would be perfect. This, however, limited our selection to only the entire planet! I quickly became discouraged by all the options and by the thought of planning the personalized wedding we wanted abroad, so I decided to start looking locally. We looked up and down the California coast, but every time we found something we liked we went back to our first list and always felt like we were compromising. After going through this process several times, I decided to give the destination thing one last attempt. My mom mentioned Puerto Vallarta, the location of my favorite family vacation as a little girl. She remembered me saying during that trip that I wanted to get married there someday. Too young to really remember that, I wondered if Puerto Vallarta could really be the perfect place for us. Giving the idea of a destination wedding another go, my mom and I flew down to Puerto Vallarta to visit possible locations.
To put it simply, Puerto Vallarta is the Mexico I adore. Its romantic cobble stone streets lined with bougainvillea, lush green mountains on top of gorgeous beaches, warm people and Spanish coastal villas are a dream! Still, though I loved PV, we were unsure of taking on the challenge of planning from California. Then we found The Dazzling Details team, and all the uncertainty disappeared. Over the course of looking, I began to develop a vision, although it was rather complicated. When The Dazzling Details asked me to share it, I was worried I might scare them away. I told them I envisioned a wedding with influences from Mexico and France, chic and airy, rustic yet beachy and with a travel theme that reflected our love for experiencing the world. Luckily, the team embraced my very specific vision and even managed to place a big fat Justin and Kristi stamp on it! Our day was magical. I just kept thinking, “This is exactly what we wanted but more beautiful then I could have ever dreamed, and it is so us!” We wouldn’t change a single thing — no regrets — and no compromising necessary!
From The Dazzling Details… From the simple yet chic beach ceremony to the candlelit dinner reception and the festive celebration of romance that followed, this is a wedding to be remembered. Guests gathered at the villa in the late afternoon for agua fresca and then walked together down the cobblestone street to beautiful Conchas Chinas Beach for the simple chic wedding ceremony. Two of the younger guests awaited the group at the beach peddling flower petal cones and greeting guests! Following the ceremony, guests were greeted by an unexpected visitor at the villa entrance! Kristi and Justin SO wanted a Mexican burro to be part of the celebration, and so it was! Wedding guests styled themselves with mustaches, sombreros and paper flowers and posed alongside the furry guest of honor! Up in the villa, lounging areas decorated with single blooms in bud vases, mini terracotta pots, succulents and paper airplanes (in honor of the pilot bride’s passion for flying) invited guests to get comfortable while cocktailing! Early on, the bride professed her love of fresh French cheeses and blueberries, so we combined the two and surprised the couple with cheese boards at each table for guests to enjoy upon being seated. Maracas painted with the word “amor” were placed on each dinner chair, and guests shook them throughout the meal in lively celebration while exposed bulb lighting and papel picado danced overhead! Following dinner, some serious dancing ensued with guests being offered hand-rolled cigars, sugary Mexican churros and hot chocolate throughout the evening. And as if that weren’t enough, at the very end of the night, the couple exited the villa in style with a sparkler send off and hopped into a classic antique taxi and drove off into the starry night!
Is it crazy that this little wedding blogger has never known there was an official time for the Jewish bride and groom to be alone and really the commitment they just made sink in? Yichud. I LOVE this tradition – a time for the couple to let the joy and happiness wash over them while their friends and family are outside celebrating their new marriage. It seems perfect – something I wouldn’t mind incorporating into my every day! Michelle Turner Photography travelled to Mexico with these two lovebirds to capture their big day and it could not have been more magical. Make sure to save some time for the beach views in the full image gallery.
From Michelle Turner Photography … Sarah and Marc held their destination wedding in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico. Sarah and Marc met at work – they are both teachers in California (Sarah is a special education teacher, and Marc is a math and science teacher). When they started working at the same school, their classrooms shared a wall, and Sarah said that she first noticed the sound of Marc’s voice from the other side of the wall. They became friends first, though, and didn’t start dating until they had been friends for more than a year. They started spending time together in a group during happy hour after work, and Sarah told me that they shared their first kiss after work in a dive bar! They decided to get married while Marc was teaching in South Africa– Sarah visited him there, and he surprised her with the ring!
They chose a destination wedding because they wanted to include their family and friends who were scattered around the globe. Hence the travel theme that makes an appearance in all of their little details.
I asked Sarah and Marc to share their favorite moment from the wedding with me. Sarah said:
When I came around the corner to walk down the aisle- I remember hearing the ocean, which I love deeply- I had both my parents next to me and I felt like I locked eyes with almost all of my friends… and then I saw Marc and we both started laughing we were so excited. I was stunned by how much fun I had at our actual ceremony. I have never lived more fully in a single moment. Marc said that his favorite moment was right after our ceremony, when we got to spend a few minutes in Yichud. In a Jewish wedding the bride and groom spend a few minutes in seclusion after the ceremony to let what has happened sink in. We got to taste all our great food- we toasted each other. It was so special to have those few minutes alone just us- at the same time we could hear our friends laughing outside which made us both realize how lucky we were to have each other and to be surrounded by these incredible friends and family.
Photographer: Michelle Turner Photography / Venue + Flowers: Playa Fiesta / Dress: Anne Barge, Bliss Bridal / Earrings + Hairpiece: Bliss Bridal / Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Invitation: Minted + Sarah and Marc stamped and cut out the compass embellishments / Programs: Esty by Robin Bellomy + Marc and Sarah designed and assembled the rest / Menus: DIY / Favors: Donated school supplies through the United Nations Children’s Fund to Children in Internally Displaced Person’s Camps / Table Cards: DIY / Additional Table Décor: Pottery Barn / Escort Cards: Sunshine and Ravioli / Chair signs, cake topper: Etsy by Morgann Hill / Straws: Etsy / Chuppah: Handmade by Marc’s mom and completed with Marc’s grandmother’s lace table cloth / Ring Box: Vintage cigar box / Yarmulkes: Mary Piper + Stepmother of the Groom / Welcome Bags: DIY
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From Michelle Turner Photography… Laurie and Chris held their destination wedding on New Year’s Eve at the Hacienda Palo Maria in Conchas Chinas, Mexico. Their wedding venue was a last-minute substitution, as Chris’ family villa in Conchas Chinas sustained fire damage the week of the wedding. Laurie and Chris had such a great attitude, and things just came together perfectly for their wedding at their replacement venue. Because of the holiday, Laurie and Chris had both fireworks and sparklers at their event, along with amazing food from Plush Catering and mariachis that serenaded Laurie as she walked down the aisle with her father.