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San Diego Wedding from Chelsea Anne Photography and Parties & Petals

We love a bride who rocks her mother’s dress. But a bride who carries a bouquet inspired by her grandmothers is something I’ve never seen before, and I’m officially naming it the chic thing to do. This trendsetting bride carried a bouquet from Parties & Petals that stunned and though the rest of the wedding had a lot to live up to, somehow it did it effortlessly. It’s gorgeous, and thanks to Chelsea Anne Photography, it’s all right here!


From the beautiful bride… Our wedding day captured our relationship, traveling and living coast to coast. Mike and I incorporated this into our day through small details- our table “numbers” were pictures from our favorite destinations, in our welcome bags we shared our love for California wine inside a small tote with a map of the states. Our wedding was California Black Tie/Romantic Chic. We chose La Costa Resort to set our scene- both ceremony and reception were outdoors on the breathtaking valley promenade. Our guests traveled from all over to be there for us and seeing those faces of everyone we love in this world was my favorite part.

My bouquet resembled my late grandmothers from her wedding day- it was jaw dropping! Not only was it special- it was GORGEOUS! Getting ready, I was so calm and happy our day was finally here, making sure to enjoy the little moments, knowing our amazing wedding planner, Jenifour from Go Get It Events would execute all of the details, so there were no worries for anyone- everyone had a blast. It’s not very often we get to see all of our favorite people in one place to share in the most exciting step in our lives yet. So doing it our way created the perfect day and night. 

Photography: Chelsea Anne Photography | Planner: Jenifour Jones/Go Get It Events | Florist: Parties & Petals | Wedding Cake: Briarmist Cakes | Officiant: Pastor Mike | Musicians: Ocdamia Strings | Resort: La Costa Resort & Spa

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California Bohemian Backyard Wedding from Joielala

As much as I LOVE it, I’ve never truly been able to pull off the whole boho look. There’s something about me in tribal print or flowy skirt that just feels awkward. So instead, I like to live vicariously through weddings like this one from Joielala. It’s boho done right, and set in one of the prettiest backyards you’ve probably ever seen. Oh, and in case you find yourself in the same boat as me, you can freely embrace your inner bohemian spirit right over here.

al fresco 2

From the Bride… Having both grown up in Southern California we wanted a wedding with an old California beachy, bohemian feel. We are very involved in the Carlsbad surf community where Nowell grew up, so it seemed perfect to be married at his childhood home. The beautiful 1920s era house was formerly an avocado grove and is now owned by his aunt and uncle, who were also married there in the early 80s!

We wanted to create a sophisticated backyard party with a true California feel. The type of party we would throw with our friends if we could really do it up. Authenticity was important to us. Despite getting married in a backyard, the contrived rustic element isnt our style (no Victorian dressers and bicycles on the lawn here!). We just tried to stay true. We used big farm tables for a communal party vibe and found fabric with sweet bohemian feel for table runners – sewn by my wonderful mom.

We focused on romantic florals, including garden roses and big fluffy peonies to balance the less conventional elements. A family friend married us in a personal ceremony under a tree beneath an amazing floral chandelier filled with flowers. Our simple wedding party consisted of Nowells (now our) daughter as our flower girl. Although my dress was formal (bought online!) and Nowell wore a classic black tuxedo, it was cocktail attire for our guests. We figured comfortable guests are happy guests. Having gone on frequent surf trips to the Northern Baja town of Puerto Nuevo, one of our favorite meals is the lobster special the town is famous for. We used this as the inspiration for our entire menu, with tray-passed mini Patron margaritas and mini seared ahi street tacos and sausage empananda appetizers. We served a dinner of Puerto Nuevo style lobster tails with warm tortillas and butter, a station of mini bean & cheese burritos, garlic & carnitas stuffed quesadillas and lots of hot sauce options.

We focused on keeping the wedding elegant but also laid back and a little bit rock & roll. At cocktail hour, we were lucky to have friends who are popular local classic rock musicians play, including lots of Led Zeppelin, The Beatles, Dylan and the like. Instead of serving a signature cocktail neither of us has ever had, we served our true (albeit simple) favorites: El Lobo (the wolf) – a Jack & Coke for him, and La Conejita (the bunny) – a Kettle & grapefruit for me. The bar included wooden stir sticks for each selection and customized cocktail napkins with meaningful lyrics from our favorite song, Talking Heads This Must Be The Place also our first dance. We offered a cigar bar with matchbooks using the calligraphy from our invitations and the famous Doors lyric: come on baby, light my fire.

And we had actual fire! Both growing up going to bonfire parties with our family and friends, I liked the social area it creates within a large party. We ordered a custom fire pit with our new last name and lit it up for a little area where friends could have cocktails or a cigar and catch up while watching the dance floor mayhem. We now have the fire pit at home for parties with friends and beach nights. The most memorable parts of our wedding were our family dance with our little girl, dancing to Hey Ho by the Lumineers, which is her favorite family song, and seeing all of our fabulous friends and family getting to know each other and living it up. And of course, being married to the love of my life.

(Fun side note: I was in such a hurry to get to the wedding and marry Nowell I got pulled over! The cop saw the veil and let me go with a warning ticket – but I will always have that ticket with our wedding date on it.)

Photography: Joielala | Floral Design: Plenty of Petals | Cake: VG Donut & Bakery | Invitations: Bella Figura | Catering: The Wild Thyme Company | DJ: Disc Go Round | Officiant: Dr. Geoffrey Bell | Bar Decor: For Your Party | Bride's Hair: Shannen Chadick | Bride's Makeup: Rachel Dixon | Ceremony & Cocktail Music: John Bennett & Jimmy Volkert | Flower Girl Dresses: J.Crew | Groom's Tux: Ascot Shop | Jewelery: J.Crew | Jewelery: Nordstrom | Linens: Mother of the Bride | Rentals & Lighting: Classic Party Rentals | Venue: Family Home | Wedding Dress + Shoes: Badgley Mischka

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Carlsbad Wedding Film from Luke McCain Videography

If I could convince all of you lovelies out there in SMP land planning a wedding to hire someone to capture your big day on film, I would feel the greatest sense of achievement. Because let me tell you, you never know how much those minutes captured will mean to you until the day is long over. When you turn it on, years later, and are immediately brought back to that magical day. Particularly if you team up with someone like  Luke McCain Videography - who has a way of not only capturing the beauty of the day, but the emotion. So if you are on the fence of hiring a cinematographer, just hit play…


From Luke McCain VideographyLacee and Josh’s Wedding was held at a beautiful quaint venue right on the beach in Carlsbad, California. They’re high school sweethearts whom I had known since high school and we were honored to film their wonderful day together. The venue offers easy access to the beach, and the romantic “first look” shots of Lacee and Josh at sunset are perhaps some of the best footage we have ever captured. Just a stunning bride and groom, with the raw emotion spilled onto film.

Cinematography: Luke McCain Videography | Photography: RCP Photography | Venue: Levyland Estates | Coordination: First Comes Love | DJ: High Energy DJ | Hair + Makeup: Lovestruck Makeup Artistry Hair Design | Catering: I Love Tacos Catering  |
Officiant: Pastor Mike