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Berkeley Faculty Club Photo Shoot from Jennifer Skog Photographers

We’re totally smitten with this raw elegance inspired photo shoot by Jennifer Skog Photographers. The juxtaposition of design elements is bold and in a word, stunning. Masculine and feminine mesh perfectly with leather accents and pretty florals, and weathered industrial elements are at home next to gold accented glassware. It’s insanely brilliant and so creative, we can’t help but spend the afternoon gazing at all the lovely in the full gallery. Join us, won’t you?

Click here for the FULL photo shoot!

From Jennifer Skog PhotographersThe inspiration for our “Raw Elegance” shoot came from a love of mixing and contrasting design elements. I love something sparkly set against something weathered; I wanted frilly materials with raw and tattered edges and metallic elements with patina. Leather was another material used throughout the design. The entire scheme was to appear slightly dark and grungy, all the while appearing very elegant.

Setting the mood for our design was the Berkeley Faculty Club. With its wooden walls and beams, taxidermy and antler topped fireplace, this venue was the perfect backdrop. Again, with the need for contrast in the design, there was a great juxtaposition with this masculine venue and the femininity of our bride. Our bride, although elegant needed to have some edge. Her dress had layers and layers of tattered ruffles and was belted off with a slim leather belt with gold studs. Her necklace added some sparkle and color to an overall matte look. For some flirty fun, she wore ruffled socks with platform shoes. Her edgy look was also brought out by makeup artist Lindsay Skog. Smoky eyes and a messy updo completed the look.

Since we were working with Milk Glass Vintage Rentals, my intent with this design was to show their vintage items in a new way. Vintage weddings have been huge the past few years, and when the trend dies down, there are still fantastic ways to use vintage pieces. Mixing old and new elements is really what gives a design layers of interest. The color palette mainly consisted of cream, ivory, brown and gold. Green and a touch of purple were the only pops of color. The table was set with layers of different, raw-edged lace patterns. Atop sat wooden scalloped chargers, green ikat dinnerware and capiz shell wooden bowls. To add a little sparkle, I use gold-rimmed stemware, cut crystal glasses and mother of pearl flatware. A golden antler held the placecards at each setting, and marbled chocolate textured by bubble wrap made for a special little treat. The flowers were the crème de la crème of this tablescape. Placed in leather-strapped vases and heightened by chain link candelabras, these flowers added a great variance of height. Arranged by Nicole Ha Designs, they featured various white flowers, purple artichokes, leafy greens and feathers. A weedier version was set atop a simple cake to add height. The dessert table was back dropped with an industrial shelf holding cut crystal stemware and vases. More leather was brought into this mix, and the whole vignette was styled with vintage rentals. Fun plays on the faculty club were made by using two vintage desks. The first was an old classroom desk. The other, we used as our dessert table.

Photography: Jennifer Skog Photographers / Photo Shoot Venue: The Faculty Club at University of California at Berkeley in Berkeley, California / Design: Jennifer Bishop Design / Floral Design: Nicole Ha Designs / Cake: Jen’s Cakes / Chocolate: Forno Vecchio / Wedding Stationery: The Card Lady / Vintage Rentals: Milk Glass Vintage Rentals / Rentals: Hartmann Studios Rentals / Wedding Dress: Watters via Gabrielle’s Bridal Atelier / Hair + Makeup: Lindsay Skog of Professional Makeup Artistry

These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
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Berkeley Wedding from Anna Wu Photography

I absolutely love watching love stories unfold on our screens each and every day. Hearing people’s stories, and seeing those sweet couples express that love story through their wedding – it’s truly never gets old. It’s a fabulous way to spend your workday, let me tell you, and when you get to see it all unfold through images as pretty as these from Anna Wu Photography – it makes it that.much.better. I recommend cozying up with all the pretty in this party, and you can do so right here!

 Click here for the FULL wedding!

From the Bride & Groom… On the first day of college at Miami University in Oxford, Ohio, David spotted Michelle sitting in the second row of their 8 a.m. political science class. Emboldened by new school excitement, sat down next to her. He would later claim this was the best decision of his life. Unbeknownst to him, Michelle had already spied David walking to campus that morning and secretly hoped he would be in her class. One thing led to another, as they say, and here we are 11 years later. It wasn’t love at first sight, but might be as close as it comes in real life.

The historic Berkeley City Club built by famed architect Julia Morgan was the perfect backdrop for Michelle and David’s long-awaited wedding.

Wedding Photography: Anna Wu Photography / Wedding Venue + Catering: Berkeley City Club Hotel in Berkeley, California / Floral Design: Studio Choo / Wedding Cake + Cupcakes: Miette / Ceremony + Cocktail Hour Musicians: Trio Paz / Dinner Musicians: Randy Moore Trio / Reception Musicians: Quinn DeVeaux and the Blue Beat Review / Photo Booth: Photo-Matica / Wedding Dress: Vera Wang / Hair: Karen Jones of Festoon Salon / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Jenny Yoo

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
Berkeley Wedding at Hotel Shattuck Plaza from onelove photography

Black and white details are as classic as they come but when you put a striped twist on things and add beautiful red and pink florals by Chestnut & Vine Floral Design, LLC into the mix, it’s a whole new modern ballgame. One that Va de Vie Events has blended seamlessly with the backdrop of Hotel Shattuck Plaza. Now add images by onelove photography into the mix and BOOM, we’ve got ourselves a pretty party. See it all right here.

From the Bride… We looked at every step of planning our wedding as an opportunity to share who we are with our guests, starting with where and when to have the wedding. Currently, we live in Los Angeles, but we both felt that having the wedding take place in our hometown of Berkeley would be most fitting. The wedding took place on our seventh anniversary, which made the date feel extra special. We took the smaller details as a chance to show off some of our favorite things — we used our favorite colors, served our favorite cake flavors and fully stocked the candy bar with the candy we always snack on. We were also sure to capture special details, such as including my grandmother’s locket in my bridal bouquet and reading our favorite story to each other during the ceremony, “The Lovely Love Story” by Edward Monkton. The story includes illustrations of dinosaurs, which inspired our dinosaur cake toppers.

When we first sat down to discuss how we wanted our wedding to feel, Amit and I both agreed that we wanted it to have a lush, romantic atmosphere, but we also wanted to show off our silly, whimsical side. When we had our first walk-through at Hotel Shattuck Plaza, we knew we had found the our space. It is the perfect balance of being playful and fun, yet something about the hotel feels so classic and sophisticated. To set the tone that our wedding wouldn’t be too stuffy or fussy, our save-the-dates were a timeline of our relationship and our RSVP cards were mad libs. We learned really quickly that you can’t please everyone. It is important to be considerate of your guests, but it is also important to remember that you probably can’t make 125 guests unanimously happy with each decision you make. Once you accept that, it becomes so much easier and more fun to plan a wedding that is true to you and your partner. More than anything, enjoy the day, and enjoy the process! Things will go wrong along the way, but if you roll with it, the end result can be even better than your initial plan.Other than that, be sure to have great people helping you on the big day, be it a friend or professional. We both agree that hiring Vera was the best decision we made throughout the process. She made it easy to relax and actually enjoy our wedding day.

Where we could, we tried to have our friends and family participate in the wedding. My childhood Hebrew teacher (a rabbi) happens to also be close family friends with my husband’s family, and that made her the obvious choice as our officiant since she knew us both so well. We also were fortunate to have an old high school friend play the violin during our ceremony, and my aunt sang to us during the reception. It made the whole day feel really personal and communal, and seeing your worlds collide on your wedding day is a pretty amazing feeling. There were also all sorts of little hiccups that actually made the day more fun and memorable! Our flower girl walked down the side of the room and then UP the aisle, my shoe got caught in a grate on the way to meeting Amit for our first look photo, and our rabbi spilled wine during the ceremony. Those moments proved more memorable and helped remind us to remember what was important! Other than that, our group of friends had not one, but two, very rowdy renditions of “SHOUT!” on the dance floor!

Wedding Photography: onelove photography / Wedding Venue: Hotel Shattuck Plaza in Berkeley, California / Event Design + Coordination: Vera Devera of Va de Vie Events / Floral Design: Chestnut & Vine Floral Design, LLC / Officiant: Tsipora Gabai / Wedding Cinematography: Wing Hon Films / Catering: FIVE Restaurant / Wedding Cake: Torino Baking / Wedding Stationery: Yellow Brick Graphics / DJ: Big Fun DJ / Lighting: Event Magic / Rentals: Hartmann Studios / Chuppah: Miracle Chuppahs / Wedding Dress + Veil: Winnie Couture / Bride’s Shoes: Designed by Bride via Milk & Honey / Bride’s Jewelry: Vintage from the Mother of the Bride / Hair + Makeup: Beauty Bug Makeup / Groom’s Attire: Hugo Boss / Rings: Oscar’s Design Jewelry

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
Berkeley’s Brazilian Room Wedding From R. Jack Balthazar

This wedding was a true labor of love for Rene & Niki Delacueva, owners of R. Jack Balthazar. Longtime friends of the groom, John, we had imagined and re-imagined his wedding for many years…long before he found Ann!

The overall design was inspired by John & Ann’s love of the outdoors, their modern style, a bold color palette inspired by the sunset, and nods to their Chinese ancestry… The feeling was warm, inviting, and gracious as if they were entertaining guests in their home …

What an awesome reflection of love! Our warmest wishes to Ann & John! See the whole SMP wedding gallery here.

We’ll be back in a few with another of R. Jack Balthazar’s fantastic weddings!  While you wait, take a look at some of the “tranformations” that they’ve done ~ some incredible before and after photos on their website. Seriously incredible.

Photography: Akiko Photography
Flowers & Event Design: R. Jack Balthazar
Reception Location: The Brazilian Room, Berkeley, CA
Catering: Melons Catering
Cake: Satura Cakes

We’ll be back in a few with another of R. Jack Balthazar’s fantastic weddings!

Breathtaking Fall Wedding From Waterlily Pond

Once, not too long ago, while I was visiting Abby, she returned from speaking at a bridal event in the area with a big beautiful bouquet in her hands. One of the floral designers hosting the event had sent it home with her. I had forgotten just how heavy a bouquet can be! We share images of gorgeous bouquets daily on SMP, but the experience of holding one is quite rare indeed. I thought, how sad is that? Something so extraordinarily beautiful ~ is sometimes a once in a lifetime thing. And now, every time I see a big luscious bouquet, I think of that one. And I think about how much joy those designers bring to each and every one of their brides.

photography courtesy of Teresa Halton

Ahhhh… but as they say, I digress!

Natasha at Waterlily Pond is one fabulously talented designer who, no doubt, brings an abundance of joy to all of her brides!  She’s shared these stunning images from Lauri & Ira’s October wedding ~ and the gorgeousness by no means stopped with the bouquets …

Laurie and Ira wanted a casual, outdoor, Sunday afternoon wedding. Having grown up in the area, Laurie felt that Tilden Park was the perfect place. Their colors revolved around pale pinks, cream, apricot and espresso brown.

from Natasha

Laurie and Ira were married on a beautiful October day at the Brazilian Room in Tilden Park, Berkley, California. Laurie chose vintage seed packets as her theme, and she used them for her stationery, table numbers and place cards.

She wanted the wedding to have a sweet vintage feel, with soft hues of cream, peach and apricot with pops of brighter orange. Inspired by Laurie’s collection of images, I combined sweet feminine flowers – garden roses, ranunculus, blushing bride and dahlias, with accents of grasses, berries and fruit – pomegranates, persimmons and pepper berries.

The chuppa was designed in an arts-and-crafts style, matching the architecture of the Brazillian Room. It was re-purposed as a setting for an outdoor evening lounge.

All I can say is wow … how incredibly beautiful!

Thank you Natasha and Teresa ~ for sharing and Congratulations to Laurie and Ira.  You can see their whole gallery of images here: SMP Photo Gallery: Laurie & Ira

Photography: Teresa Halton, Floral and Event Design: Waterlily Pond, Ceremony & Reception Venue:  Brazil Room, Tilden Park, Berkley CA, Cake: Montclair Baking

To see more of Waterlily Pond’s sensational floral designs ~ take a look at the featured wedding on their website: Julie & Jared At Santa Lucia Preserve, Carmel where a rustic barn was transformed into an incredible wedding wonderland!

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
Berkeley Wedding by Leo Patrone

We have had a jam packed day of gorgeousness, complete with DIY projects, insanely lovely invitations and the announcement that we’ll be doing our From Inspiration to Reality feature again. It’s been a fun day on SMP and to be honest, the content today is the reason that I love what I do. So much creativity, so much of the pretty, so much wedding goodness. Well, this next feature that Leo Patrone sent us, is just the icing on the already really great cake.

leo patrone real wedding

As I mentioned, the fabulous (and I when I say fabulous, I am hardly doing him justice) Leo Patrone sent us today’s real wedding and it is complete and total loveliness. From the perfect bride, to the undeniably gorgeous flowers and sweet little details, every bit of it is swoon-worthy. With a soft, feminine color palette and a really simple approach to design, this couple managed to pull off an affair that is as timeless as it is chic. I love that. It’s a style that will forever remain gorgeous, that will forever be used as inspiration.

leo patrone real wedding

The wedding was held at Tilden Park in Berkeley’s Brazil Room. It was planned by Jessica Goldblatt from Dreams on a Dime Events and Weddings and was a perfect combination of timeless elegance, and a fun, modern sense of whimsy. You can actually feel the joy in each and every photo with a bride and groom that are clearly madly in love and a celebration that is all charm.

leo patrone real wedding

Make sure to check out Leo’s ridiculously cool site and his blog that is completely filled with eye candy and inspirations! Even a couple of the prettiest weddings you’ve ever seen.

Additional Vendors: Caterer – Serves You Right Catering, Flowers – Orchid Florist, Hair & Makeup – Sherrie Long, Invites – Vistaprint + Michaels, Rentals – Celebration Party Rental, Violin & cello duo – Ramen & Rice, Gypsy jazz band – Pacific Manouche Trio, DJ – Dave Hosley, Transportation – On Time Limousine, Dresses – Melissa Sweet + J.Crew, Suit – Ermenegildo Zegna, Wedding bands – Van Craeynest + Shane Co., Cake topper – Naked Peggies on Etsy, Scrapbook – Kolo, Parasols – Lunabazaar