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Rustic Chic Fall Wedding at Chalk Hill Estate Winery

This Bride may have felt a bit like Cinderella (a chic version I must say) in her dress but if these pics by Kate Webber are any indication, she radiates a princess vibe more than anything (with a little help from The Powder Room too). With perfect planning and pretty petals from Scott Corridan Designs and delicious dishes from Taste Catering, this is a whimsical wedding not to be forgotten.

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Settings
Winery
Styles
Whimsical

From Scott Corridan Designs… Kirsten and Max met in NYC many, many moons ago – nine years to be exact. This Bay Area couple chose to celebrate their special day at Chalk Hill Estate amidst the rolling hills and autumn leaves in wine country. We blended Sonoma Valley charm with a dash of whimsy for a perfect greenhouse setting. A farmer’s market inspired cocktail hour and pops of yellow flowers kept this fall wedding looking fresh and bright.

From the Bride… I grew up in Hawaii and we decided to jet to Maui for a last minute weekend getaway. My friends were highly suspicious but I was honestly pretty clueless right up until the end, when he proposed. It was very romantic and involved a dinner and dessert picnic on the beach overlooking the ocean and sunset.

We toyed with a Hawaiian destination wedding, but wanted all our friends and family to be able to come and California is the place that means the most to us as a couple. We love wine country (who doesn’t?!) but especially Healdsburg. We go there all the time and it’s a really special, still slightly under the radar place compared to other areas in wine country. We were looking for a gorgeous view and rolling hills, autumn leaves, and a great place to throw a dance party. Chalk Hill fit the bill perfectly.

Our wedding theme was organic, rustic chic. Restoration Hardware meets a greenhouse! My favorite color is green and we wanted a lot of greenery, garlands, succulents, etc. We added pops of yellow to balance it out and keep it feeling autumnal.

We didn’t have a theme per se, but wanted it to feel like “us” with little moments of whimsy. There were real elements of us in the Hawaiian ukulele player at the ceremony (the guests would not stop talking about how much they loved him!), Hawaiian inspired malasadas and mochi ice cream for dessert. The ferry building farmers market is a favorite weekend activity for us and the farmer’s market themed cocktail hour and very well stocked whiskey bar were strongly influenced by Max.

The dress is Vera Wang, from who knows how many seasons back; I found it at a sample sale. I wasn’t planning on buying Vera or a sample for that matter but I happened upon it on the first day of shopping with my Mom and it just felt like me more than any other dress I tried on. It has a gray layer of tulle that I just loved and I felt like no one would appreciate but me…which is probably why it stuck around for so many seasons at the store. It weirdly felt like maybe this dress had been waiting for me! It was kind of in shambles and I had it restored and altered by Cathy Marie at the Alameda Sewing Cottage – she is a dream. I loved the dress all the more for its tatters and little imperfections, actually. Kind of a Cinderella before the ball moment.

I wore two pairs of shoes: 5” Fendi platforms for the ceremony so that for once I could look straight into my fiance’s eyes. Then afterwards switched to YSLs with a lower heel so I could actually walk and talk at the same time. After the first dance I also changed into a vintage dress from my Aunt that she wore to a gala back in the 80s…I had it shortened by Cathy Marie and I just loved it. It was a surprise for my Aunt and she was SO excited to see it that night, she couldn’t get over it! As for jewelry, I went really simple with just two diamond bracelets on loan from Kwiat, where our rings came from too. Our lovely groomsman hand-carried them across the country for us, and back to the shop afterwards.

The ceremony was outside on a little grassy park at Chalk Hill. We had a beautiful archway that Scott did such a great job with. We arranged our chairs in a half circle which was Scott’s suggestion and we just loved it. We really struggled with writing our ceremony and only finalized it a few days before… it’s much harder than one would think. We ended up keeping it really simple and SHORT because we always appreciate that at other people’s weddings! We had a Mark Twain reading by Max’s sister and then a funny reading by our friend Kyle. We managed to make it through without crying though we’ve heard quite a few others were shedding tears, so I guess mission accomplished! My brother Andrew was our officiant and he took it all very seriously.

My niece Kaelyn is three and was our flower girl. I was personally a little worried that she wouldn’t make it down the aisle. Having my brother at the end of it really helped and somewhat shockingly she pulled it off with no issues! My mom said later that she thinks Kaelyn somehow understood the “significance” of the day and was on her best behavior. Ha!

My bouquet was a mix of yellows and whites, bridesmaids too. Max and the groomsmen wore little succulent boutonnieres.

Ben Ahn (our ukulele player) played Israel Kamakawiwaole’s version of “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” as we were coming down, and “Brown Eyed Girl” as the recessional. And all of my other contemporary Hawaiian favorites as guests were arriving and during cocktail hour. It was amazing! 

The Pavilion at Chalk Hill Estate is gorgeous, high ceilings, lots of wood and a big terrace and fireplace. We had a live saxophonist and a guitarist playing during dinner which was great. It was a HOT day (high 90s) so people were all about the cocktails as they mingled around before dinner. We had two signature cocktails. Mine was elderflower with vodka and strawberries and lemon, Max’s was Four Roses bourbon straight up with a twist. And we got a gorgeous sunset. The dancing was off the hook, people LOVED Keith and his All Stars.

We are not big cake people so we had a dessert bar with all of my favorite treats – lemon cupcakes, mini s’mores, strawberry hand pies, etc. – and malasadas and mochi ice cream passed around which was the big hit.

Everything was special, but a few of the best moments for me were getting ready with my best friends, standing up at the arch with Max and my brother and thinking how beautiful the trees and sunlight and breeze were in that moment, and our entrance into dinner when everyone cheered – it was just overwhelming to feel so much love and happiness all at once. Also some hilarious moments when elderly aunties and uncles were tearing up the dance floor. I loved that the dancing started out with everyone old and young enjoying the band and then gradually transitioned throughout the night and ended with us playing DJ on our iPods singing 80s music and Backstreet Boys at the top of our lungs. That’s just what we wanted.

Don’t overthink it. And don’t take too much time… just make decisions and move on. And relax the day of, enjoy and be present in every minute because it all goes too fast.

Photography: Kate Webber Photography | Videography: Weddings On Film | Event Planning: Scott Corridan Design | Floral Design: Scott Corridan Design | Wedding Dress: Vera Wang | Bride's Shoes: Yves Saint Laurent | Bride's Shoes: Fendi | Jewelry: Kwiat | Catering: Taste Catering | Hair & Makeup: The Powder Room | Transportation: Pure Luxury | Wedding Venue: Chalk Hill Estate Winery | Rehearsal Dinner Venue: Barndiva | Rentals: Encore Events Rentals | Rentals: La Tavola | Sunday Brunch Venue: Hotel Healdsburg | Welcome Cocktails: Spoonbar

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
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These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here

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A Romantic Affair in Healdsburg

I’m 100% convinced onelove photography has the coolest clients in the world. With wedding after gorgeous wedding, it’s clear her couples have style for days, and this sweet duo is the perfect example. They opted for a relaxed yet completely romantic vibe, with nods to their relationship sprinkled in along the way. Treat yourself to more eye candy in the gallery.













Colors
Seasons
Summer
Styles
Rustic

From The Bride and Groom…We wanted a relaxed romantic vibe, with subtle hints of what our relationship is made of. By trying to keep the colors softer, it left room for details that wouldn’t overwhelm. We wanted guests to feel comfortable with a little sparkle here and there.

Joe’s blue suit was a big deal, Im not certain I had the forethought to realize the impact it would have, but was so elated by the outcome! Granted the traditional mindset is that “all eyes are on the bride”, but when I walked down the aisle my eyes were glued on the man in blue;) During our first look I could just tell he felt important, the details had really made a lasting memory. We had spent so much time debating tie colors, pocket squares, getting the fit just right…and it was fun seeing him invested in a process that didn’t include a flower or linen. Knowing that I wasn’t the only one getting the bridal “ooh’s” and “ah’s” was priceless, and he truly was a looker.

For inspiration, I looked everywhere! It’s been a hard habit to break, walking in to a grocery store and not filling my basket with bridal magazines. And Pinterest was like the rabbit hole in Alice and Wonderland, I’d click on one link that would lead me to another blog…and another idea….and so on, too much fun (my groom would have different thoughts on that one though.) That being said, I started searching with more of an agenda or goal. On some evenings I’d limit myself to find inspiration for the aisle, another for the table decor, etc.

Mags took us off to take photos after the cake cutting, right as the sun was setting. All the formalities were done and I really felt like we had a chance to breathe and make a memory. We walked out to this country road lined with vineyards, and in the distance you could hear our guests cheering, and we couldn’t help but laugh. Knowing that they were all having so much fun, with or without us, truly made us happy. And being able to start our life together surrounded by that much unapologetic celebration was pure bliss.

Photography: onelove photography | Coordination: Megan Clark | Floral Design: Papillion Floral Design | Wedding Dress: Sottero & Midgley | Cake: Forget Me Not Cakes | Stationery: Minted | Ceremony: Private Winery | Reception: Private Winery | Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Catering: Feast Catering | DJ: Chris AMS DJ/MC | Groom's Attire: Men's Wearhouse | Linens: La Tavola | Makeup & Hair: Susie Chhuor

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
Rustic Summer Wedding at Barndiva

Returning to the Napa Valley, the spot of their first vacation together, was the natural choice for this East Coast couple’s intimate, destination wedding. And thankfully, Christina McNeill was on-hand to capture all Barndiva’s quirky nature and the sweet, rustic details that made the wedding so special, and so beautiful. See them all in the gallery.

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
Farm
Styles
Rustic

From the beautiful Bride…We live on the East Coast, and it was not an easy decision to ask our loved ones to fly from all over the country. It also meant some of the people closest to us would not be able to attend. But when we thought abut the most special place to get married, there’s nowhere else we could see ourselves. Our first vacation as a couple was in Sonoma County, and Healdsburg just fits us. Once we walked into Barndiva and met with Lukka, we knew we found the place. He and the rest of the Barndiva team made sure every detail was just as we imagined it, and the planning sessions were always filled with laughter. From the creative menu to the beautifully quirky decor, it was perfect—top quality without feeling stuffy or too formal.

There are too many favorite moments to list here, but there was a moment during dinner when we stood off to the side to take in the scene. We were in awe watching our family and friends mingled together under the twinkly lights, and recognizing the effort they all had made to be at this one place in time. That’s when it really sunk in — they were all there to celebrate our marriage.

It’s pretty cool to pick out your flowers at the farm where they’re grown. Once Bonnie at Dragonfly understood the mood we wanted to convey, we didn’t have to spend time obsessing over the details—we knew she could do her thing and the outcome would be exquisite. We were also very lucky to have found an amazing planner, Amber Keneally. She was a great collaborator and brought our ideas to life, like using rustic old windows to display table assignments and adding rosemary sprigs to the place cards.

Someone along the way gave us some sage advice: Don’t skimp on the pictures or the music! We’re glad we listened. Our photographer, Christina McNeill, captured everything with such an artful eye, especially the little moments where people weren’t aware of the camera. Now we get to relive that unbelievable day whenever we want. Carl Vast played classical guitar during our outdoor ceremony, which was an ideal fit with the setting. When it came to the band, we chose Metro Music Club. Some thought we were nuts for hiring a band that had to fly in from Salt Lake City, but that was a stellar decision on our part. They were flat-out awesome.

Photography: Christina McNeill | Event Planning: Amber Keneally | Floral Design: Dragonfly Floral | Wedding Dress: La Sposa | Stationery: Designers Fine Press | Shoes: Stuart Weitzman | Bridesmaid's Dresses: Carven | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Kay Unger | Hair & Makeup: Brush Salon | Calligraphy: Joanne Day | Groom's Attire: J. Crew | Groom's Shoes: To Boot NY | Groom's Suit: Suit Supply | Venue: Barndiva | Catering & Cake: Barndiva

Custom Gowns with JINZA Couture Bridal

There are bridal salons, and there are personalized bridal salons like JINZA Couture Bridal.  A place where beautiful collections and breathtaking custom creations join forces with the most amazing customer service you’ll ever experience to create an individually crafted design made just for you.  Think private appointments with top-notch consultants or your very own personal designer, aka, a team of wedding geniuses that know a thing or two about making you look awesome for your special occasion.

Serving Bay Area brides since 2002, JINZA Couture Bridal’s new and exclusive Los Angeles boutique is now open in the heart of West Hollywood (933 N La Cienega Blvd), which means that even more brides get to experience the gorgeous gowns and attention to detail that JINZA Couture Bridal is so well-known for. Imagine a timeless piece created from scratch using only the finest of fabrics with custom tailoring to fit your figure perfectly, alterations included.  Brides can try on a range of gowns or mold a custom creation.

Explore high fashion styles, updated classics, unconventional sheaths, opulent ball gowns, the popular soft mermaid style and JINZA’s own signature couture designs at the new Los Angeles boutique. Each gown is light weight and comfortable (no shape wear or bra needed!), so that you can dance the night away with the one you love.  And you can complete your bridal ensemble with a veil, jewelry and shoes all available at JINZA Couture Bridal.  Amazing.

Classic, elegant and totally sophisticated – contact JINZA Couture Bridal TODAY to begin creating that dress of your dreams.  Take it from someone who knows – it will be the best decision you’ll ever make.

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Marmalade Sky Films + A Discount + A Giveaway!

There is something so special about having your wedding day captured on film for you and your honey to relive over and over again. And when the film is done by the insanely creative Northern California boutique cinematography company Marmalade Sky Films, you’ll find any excuse to press play.

Behind the lens is a team of best friends, Eugene + Matt, who worked in the film industry prior to discovering their passion for wedding cinematography. Thanks to this experience, every film they create is based in a deep love for visual storytelling. Their films capture all the special moments of the couple’s big day, from the kisses to the laughter and tears, in a way that is authentic and genuine, to tell each couple’s individual and unique love story.

Are you head-over-heels yet? Well now’s the time to book your big day with Marmalade Sky Films because they’re giving SMP readers who book before September 2015 $200 off a Wedding Cinematography Package of their choice! Simply mention this post when booking to redeem the offer. Check out their packages here.
the-giveaway
Oh and there’s more! Marmalade Sky Films is giving one lucky reader a Save the Date film shot on Full HD ($499 value).

To enter:Comment on this post with why you’d love to have Marmalade Sky Films tell the story of you and your honey!

To win: A winner will be randomly chosen and announced in WIUP on Friday, April 24, 2015.

The details: Session must take place in San Francisco or mutually agreed upon location on mutually agreed upon date. The giveaway includes session time and one Engagement Video or Save the Date Invitation video (30 seconds to 1 minute in length).

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