Some people think it’s easy to have a California wedding. After all, it’s a breezy 80 degrees there every day. Well, so much more goes into “effortless” than one might first think. It’s the carefully selected flowers, the perfect music, the feel like home but more special food. It’s the details. And Dream A Little Dream Events reigns queen when it comes to details. Add in Jihan Cerda Photography behind the lens and there you have a perfect California wedding.
From the Bride… Planning our wedding was one of the best experiences we went through as a couple. We took our time and wanted to make sure we thought everything through so we could really enjoy our special day. With me being from the Napa Valley and him from Iowa, we wanted to choose a location that would be a memorable getaway for both our families to enjoy and cherish. We started driving to Carmel from San Francisco to celebrate special occasions and feel in love with the beauty and charm of the landscape. Once we knew that Carmel would be our destination wedding, we got busy on picking a location. We had a place in mind but wanted to check out all the options and of course, we ended up picking our first choice – Mission Ranch! Not only because of the adorable sheep in the pasture, but because we wanted a relaxing atmosphere with unforgettable views and a rustic charm.
Living two hours away from where our venue was, we knew we needed help with planning and designing our rustic romantic destination wedding. So we went with the best in the business, Kathryn Kalabokes of Dream a Little Dream Events in San Francisco. Kathryn was a perfect match from the get go. She understood what our vision was and met every vendor with us so that we felt comfortable choosing the right one. The design for our wedding incorporated the richness and beauty that was already provided by the natural landscape with a pop of bright color and our own personal style. We didn’t want a stuffy or overly formal wedding so we went with gray suits for the groomsmen who each wore navy blue ties and an anemone boutonniere that coordinated with the blue of the bridesmaid dresses. I went with romantic lace for my wedding dress by Paloma Blanca and added a touch of bling with a sash that was handmade by a close friend. Against the lush greens pasture and gorgeous flowers provided by Fiona Floral, we had the perfect outdoor wedding. And we can’t forget the string quartet, Corelli Strings, playing our favorite songs as we walked down the aisle. Being a very sunny afternoon, we provided sun parasols for guests which provided not only shade but also charm. When it came to selecting an officiant, we agreed that we wanted someone that already knew us and who we felt comfortable sharing the moment with. We also incorporate a wine unity ceremony signifying our bond and the blending of two families into one.
Our wedding was intimate with about 60 guests who enjoyed our photo booth with hand-made props, a cigar bar, and delicious passed appetizers. One of the best parts of having a weeding in Carmel is access to amazing food and wine – we didn’t want our food selection to disappoint and that it didn’t! We were just as pleased with the food as we were with the music. Jason Mitchell from Gatsby Entertainment kept guests dancing all night long until the very last dance. One of the most memorable moments of the night was sneaking away for our sunset pictures. Jihan Cerda of Jihan Cerda Photography captured every moment of our big day. My husband is not keen on spending a lot of time taking photos and Jihan was very understanding and worked with us on our engagement photos to get a feel for how we interact in front of the camera. She was beyond amazing and made the whole experience so much fun.
The entire wedding weekend was unforgettable! Our family and friends enjoyed sightseeing, wine tasting, getting to know the families, and most importantly… the start of a new beginning.
Photography: Jihan Cerda Photography | Event Planning: Dream A Little Dream Events | Floral Design: Fionna Floral | Wedding Dress: Paloma Blanca | Cake: Layers Sensational Cakes | Invitations: Minted | Bride's Shoes: Kate Spade | Hair & Makeup: Faces By Emily | DJ: Gatsby Entertainment | Venue: Carmel Mission Ranch | Ceremony & Cocktail Musicians: Corelli Strings | Photo Booth: Photo-matica