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Santa Barbara Bluffs Surprise Proposal

What better way to celebrate National Proposal Day than with this epic event orchestrated by Alegria by Design for this adorable Groom-to-be. With Jacqueline Pilar Reflections and Like a Letter hiding in the trees, he dropped to one knee as his Bride-to-be smiled in shock, gazing upon the magic words dug out in the Santa Barbara beach. Grab that Kleenex and watch it all go down in the pics and film below.

From Alegria By DesignCheyne contacted us about a month ago to assist with planning a unique proposal for his girlfriend Lindsey. After discussing Lindsey’s interests with him, it was decided that the proposal must take place outdoors. A beach setting sounded perfect but Cheyne wanted it to be intimate, and Santa Barbara beaches aren’t that. That is when we decided the bluffs would be perfect: he could write “WILL YOU MARRY ME” in the sand, walk her out to the cliffs, get down on one knee and voila. The kicker? A videographer and photographer hidden in the trees to capture the entire proposal, including audio via a hidden mic in Cheyne’s shirt pocket. After two hours of digging with his brother-in-law, and his mother on the cliff directing, the letters were complete at 9 feet tall each! The plan went off perfectly, and their closest friends and family were there to witness the entire event (also hidden in the trees)! We hope you enjoy these photos and video as much as we did. Don’t worry…we cried too.

Photography: Jacqueline Pilar Reflections | Videography: Like A Letter | Planner: Alegria By Design

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Elegant Santa Barbara Gold-Infused Wedding

I think it’s safe to say this day is a little slice of wedding heaven. With the creative genius of Joy Proctor Design behind each gorgeous moment, the bride’s vision of an elegant, completely timeless celebration covered in gold proved to be spot-on perfection. Of course, the dreamy setting at Bacara Resort and Spa didn’t hurt one bit, and the photos by Clary Pfeiffer? Let’s just say we’ve found our new happy place.

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From The Bride… Nick & I met in a snowy blizzard during the Sundance Film Festival almost three years ago. Like a true gentleman he had given me his gloves since I had forgot mine and and held me close to warm me up while we were waiting outside. There were instant sparks and after a couple of dates we both knew that our relationship was truly special. After a year of dating, Nick purposed to me in a candlelit room filled with rose petals and of course I said yes!

Our wedding day was like a dream come true. We had an intimate wedding with 85 of our close friends and family in Santa Barbara, California. We wanted to keep it small so that way we could share this once in a lifetime moment with the people who we are closest to. We wanted to make our wedding very personalized to our relationship and it’s past, present and future. That’s why we had to get married in Santa Barbara, since it was where Nick first told me he loved me. Since we are Catholic we wanted to get married in the church. I had never really been the girl who had been planning out my wedding day since a young age but one thing that I knew I always wanted was to be married at a beautiful small historic church. We found that perfect church and were married at Our Lady of Mount Carmel. It was so special to get married in a church that I knew people had been married in for hundreds of years, I thought that was so sweet, romantic and a beautiful symbol of our life-long commitment to each other. I can’t tell you how it felt to have my late great grandmothers gold rosary wrapped around my bouquet as my dad walked me down the aisle to my husband in this stunning vintage church. It was perfect and a moment I’ll cherish forever.

Since I am originally from New Mexico I wanted elements of my culture included in our big day to make it feel like home. So we incorporated hispanic influences with some of the decor by using beautiful chocolate wood Spanish style tables for the dinner, mariachis serenading us right as we walked out of the church and a Spanish guitar player during the outdoor dinner. Our reception was at sunset on the Miro Lawn overlooking the ocean at the Bacara Resort and Spa. Gold was really our main inspiration for the whole aesthetic of the wedding. I wanted a timeless and elegant feel for the reception. I set out to have our wedding planner, Joy Proctor really capture just how much I loved gold and she completely nailed it beautifully without it coming off tacky, (which was a major concern for both of us). Instead of table numbers we also chose to do table names. We chose names like Bunny (my nickname for Nick) and Sundance (the place we met) to make the day more personalized and so that way our guests could possibly learn something new about us.

My best friend of sixteen years, Noelle Cruz who is a fashion designer in LA designed the custom bridesmaid gowns as a wedding gift to us, and she even had the fabric handmade in the perfect dreamy soft gold. Since I work in Hollywood my idea was really to have the bridesmaids look like they were going to the Oscars and not a wedding. I wanted them to sparkle and shine on our wedding day. Noelle’s vision and design was dead-on and she truly turned my dream into a reality.

All in all our wedding was a golden heaven and the best day of our lives yet!

Photography: Clary Pfeiffer Photography | Videographer: Enjet Media | Event Design: Joy Proctor Design | Flowers: Petals LA | Invitations: Lazaro Press & Design | Ceremony Venue: Our Lady Of Mount Carmel Catholic Church | Reception Venue: Bacara Resort And Spa | Bride's Shoes: Gucci | Grooms Attire: Armani Tux | Bride's Dress: Vera Wang | Photo Booth: Drunken Pixel

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Santa Barbara Backyard Garden Wedding

Santa Barbara is home to some of the prettiest weddings on the planet, so it’s no wonder these two college sweethearts chose it as the setting for their summertime “I do.” They set out to create an intimate garden party with carefully placed pops of color, and brought on vendors like Jenna BlazevichSeasons CateringCody Floral Design plus many more to bring it all to life. More wedding eye candy from Lane Dittoe sitting in the gallery right here.

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From The Bride…Lucas and I were best friends before we were anything else, which is how any great romance should start! We met at Williams College in the Berkshires and moved to Los Angeles together after graduation, and then Chicago. He proposed in our living room in downtown Chicago by playing a video he had recorded for me set to Michael Buble’s “Everything,” with his entire proposal written out over 30 cue cards that he flipped through as I struggled to read through my tears! The final card said “turn around” and when I did, he was next to the couch on one knee with a gorgeous custom family heirloom ring.

Lucas’ parents moved to Santa Barbara six years ago and it has become a magical getaway spot for us. Whenever we visit, we eat some of the best food and drink some of the best wine we’ve ever tasted while enjoying the gorgeous sunshine. When we got engaged in January 2014, we knew right away we wanted to create the same experience for our wedding and our guests. We set our wedding date for July 2014, just six months later! Since we were planning from afar in Chicago, his parents became invaluable in having initial meetings with local Santa Barbara vendors so that we and my parents in New Hampshire could narrow our list. We had so much fun traveling to Santa Barbara to taste Seasons’ amazing food, see our vision for colorful and romantic peonies, dahlias, and garden roses brought to life by Laura from Cody Floral Design, meet our INCREDIBLY hard-working coordinators, Nitana and Tonya from Soigne Productions, and pick out chairs, china, and everything else at Classic Party Rentals. I had seen Lane Dittoe’s work featured on Style Me Pretty many times and have always loved his soft, pretty, timeless style. I was elated we were able to work with him on the day and he really captured the unfiltered joy and love we felt!

Lucas and I wanted our wedding to be an intimate garden party where we could spend significant time with everyone in attendance, and we didn’t want something that anyone else had done. That kept our guest count to 96 and our venue, which was the first decision we made, set the tone for the whole day. Family friends generously offered to let us have the wedding at their home in Montecito, which gave us complete control over everything we brought into the space and meant our end result was 100% one-of-a-kind. We loved how many different spaces we had to work with, from the giant oak tree we hung with dripping twinkle lights for our ceremony to the secret hedged-in flower garden where we served cocktails. Our vision was described by our vendors as casual elegance, which I thought was an oxymoron but is really so fitting!

Rather than pick a specific theme, we let the beautiful gardens and the natural colors of Santa Barbara be our guide, choosing a color palette of creamy blush, pops of coral, champagne, apricot, papaya and sage green. We also tied in rose gold in the decor and in my jewelry and shoes for sparkle. My dress was from Jenny Yoo in Chicago and was the second one I ever tried on; it was the only one that made my maid of honor Caroline tear up. Caroline and I also bought the same exact rose gold Seychelles sandals to wear without the other knowing it, so we knew we were on the same page! I wrapped a penny my mom gave me from the 1800s that her grandmother had given her around the stem of my bouquet as my “something old.” My mother-in-law gave me her beautiful family heirloom diamond bracelet to wear as my “something borrowed.” Lucas wore his beloved late grandfather’s watch.

Once we settled on the floral Rifle Paper Co. paper used in many of the DIY projects, that helped us tie everything together. My DIY projects included my magnum opus, the escort card display, which I handmade by cutting out all the table numbers from our floral theme paper with an x-acto knife and adhering them to kraft paper tags. I did the calligraphy on the decor, while our envelopes were done by the talented Jenna Blazevich out of Chicago. I also made our reserved signs and other signage, lined all our envelopes with the floral motif paper using Paper Source’s envelope liner kit (highly recommend!), hand-stamped our “wish cards,” which we used in lieu of a guestbook, and made our decopauged M & L letters. Our favors were chocolates with a custom wrapper handmade by Twenty-Four Blackbirds Chocolate in Santa Barbara. We also tried not to choose decor just because we thought it was pretty, but rather select items with special meaning, which was reflected in pieces like the vintage test tube rack that displayed single garden roses on our sign-in table—a nod to Lucas’ medical career.

We wrote our entire ceremony ourselves, including readings that reflected my background as an English Literature major and book editor and a song that Lucas’ college a cappella group would sing at every concert. Our officiant, Andrew, is a mutual best friend and brought the crowd to tears with his funny, heartfelt, wonderfully-delivered ceremony. Seeing Lucas smile at me through his tears while speaking the words we had written together filled my heart to the brim. The other moment that will always make my heart swell was the surprise my groom had planned for me at the reception. An incredible singer, Lucas arranged with our amazing DJ, Tony of RedShoe LA, to serenade me at the wedding with “Everything,” a nod to his proposal. I wasn’t the only one crying! One of our irrational fears leading up to the reception was that no one would dance; Tony’s playlist was so amazing that people jumped up to dance before they had finished their dinner!

I think one of the best decisions we made was electing to have an incredibly small wedding party. My best friend Caroline was my maid of honor, and Lucas’ cousin Tai was his best man, while Tai’s children, Ethan and Leyla, were our ringbearer and flower girl. It made the day so intimate and eliminated so much stress from the planning process. We would definitely advise anyone going through the planning process to throw any preconceived notions of “rules” you might have out the window and do what feels right for YOU. Also, take a few moments and eat the dinner you spent so long planning! We did! In fact, I ate our dessert – ice cream sandwiches with fresh-baked cookies – on the dance floor!

The best part of the day we never could have planned was the complete love and warmth that our friends and family members surrounded us with. We had two events leading up to the day, so it felt like everyone was old friends by the wedding and we can truly say we got to spend time with everyone who came. The family-style dinner from Seasons catering we served of fresh California produce, tri-tip, and sea bass was symbolic of the extended family we all became that night. Everyone says they wish we could all do it again annually! But even though the day is over, marriage has been the most amazing new start to our lives. We started this as best friends—which made our first dance song choice of “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat an easy one!—and that’s where we’ll end up, too.

Photography: Lane Dittoe | Coordination: Soigne Productions | Floral Design: Cody Floral Design | Wedding Dress: Jenny Yoo | Catering: Seasons Catering | Hair & Makeup: Mishay Salon & Spa | Calligraphy: Jenna Blazevich | Lighting: Bella Vista Designs | DJ: RedShoe | Favors: Twenty-Four Blackbirds Chocolate | Groom's Suit: J.Crew | Transportation: SB Airbus | Venue: Private Residence | Best Man's Suit: J.Crew | Copper Table Numbers: Etsy | Flower Girl Dress: Little Dreamers Tutus | Invitations & Paper: Paper Source | Linens: La Tavola | Maid Of Honor's Dress: J.Crew | Menus: Etsy | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Robes: Plum Pretty Sugar

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
Dreamy Summer Garden Afternoon Wedding

Picture this: a quiet afternoon ceremony in Santa Barbara garden followed by dreamiest outdoor luncheon you ever did see. Add in a sea of gorgeous blooms by Mindy Rice plus Alexandra Kolendrianos coordinating every last detail, and you’ve got the makings of a wedding day perfection. Peek through the lens of Megan Sorel right this way.

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From Megan Sorel PhotographyPatty and Michael’s incredibly beautiful and intimate afternoon wedding took place in the private grounds of Lotus Land in Montecito. Guests were greeted by the sounds of guitar, violin and cello and were offered minted lemonade and champagne as they entered the natural surrounding amphitheater. Foliage, florals and stone accents surrounded them while they said their vows.

A thoughtful luncheon took place following their ceremony in a open air tent draped in sheer fabrics with the most beautiful tabletop florals. First course started off with individual charcuterie boards filled with delicious meats and cheeses. A guitar duo set the mood, while guests were in awe of the colors, details and smells that surrounded them in this intimate setting. Two feasting tables with soft ivory linens were adorned with gorgeous, garden style florals. Shades of apricot, peach, champagne, buttery yellows and greens were the colors that soften and enhanced the space. Place settings with gold accents complimented. Organic and romantic was the setting.

Guests dined, took in the surrounding environment from landscape to table top and enjoyed the most beautiful summer afternoon soiree! Congratulations to Patty & Michael on your beautiful wedding!

Photography: Megan Sorel Photography | Coordination: Alexandra Kolendrianos | Floral Design: Mindy Rice Floral Design | Catering: Joan's On Third | Ceremony & Reception: Lotusland, Santa Barbara | Pre-Ceremony: San Ysidro Ranch

Classic Santa Barbara Estate Wedding

From the dress to the florals, reception and every detail in between, this California beauty is classic elegance in every sense. Bringing all the formality of a ballroom wedding outdoors, Alegria By Design made certain this bride’s aesthetic came to life and all 2o guests left the day feeling special. The lovelies of TEAM Hair & Makeup beautified the bridal party, and Jasmine Star captured the gallery filled with so much more.

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From Alegria By DesignThis gorgeous wedding was designed around a palette of creams, champagnes, pale pink and ivories with mixed metals, candle accessories. Flowers used was latte dahlias, pink and cream double bloom garden roses, cream and pink lisianthus, Dusty Miller, pink star jasmine, gardenia, white hydrangea and white phalaenopsis orchid.

From her Pinterest board I could tell that Karen was a classic bride, more black tie and ballroom than garden. My challenge was to create an homogenized design honoring both Karen’s aesthetic and the beautifully lush backdrop that Villa Verano offers up. For Karen and Mohamed’s interfaith ceremony we utilized the overgrown built-in grandstand as the main focal point. We added two flanking large-scale overflowing pedestalled garden urns dripping with florals in muted pinks and creams; we then punctuated the short aisle with piles of rose petals.

In my opinion there is just nothing like an canopy overhead to evoke a sense of wonderment. Canopies make me feel like I did when I rode “It’s a small world” at Disneyland for the first time…small, special and happy. With just 20 guests in attendance I though an simple canopy over the richly textured feasting table was just the ticket! The table was illuminate by candle light after guests were treated to an exceptionally dazzling Santa Barbara sunset. It was such a pleasure to design Karen’s beautiful day. It was appropriately formal and graciously casual at all the right times and places!

Photography: Jasmine Star | Event Design: Alegria By Design | Event Planning: Alegria By Design | Floral Design: Louloudi Designs | Cake: Christine Dahl Pastries | Shoes: Prada | Caterer: Cook Better Live Better | Hair And Makeup: TEAM Hair & Makeup | Transportation: Tours A La Carte | Venue: Villa Verano | Linens: La Tavola | Musicians: Marc Bosserman | Rentals: Town And Country

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Romantic Summer Wedding at Rincon Beach Club

Some weddings I just adore but struggle to explain preciously why. It’s details like these oh so pretty florals by Grass Roots combined with a love that radiates, and this celebration is a prime example. Koman Photography captured what I’m stumbling to say and Karl Stelter Wedding Films made it even clearer. A photo is worth a thousand words so you can see exactly what I mean right here.

From Koman Photography… We were so happy to have been given the chance to document Marussya and Jon’s exquisite Santa Barbara wedding. The wedding took place at Rincon Beach Club and their beautiful ceremony was full of love and support from their family and friends. Marussya and Jon are perfect together – there is never a dull moment with these two! There is so much we can say about this stunning couple and wedding, but we think the photos will do a lot more justice.

From The Bride… I met my husband one hot summer day at a pool party in Houston, TX. We made eye contact but never actually exchanged words until our first date two weeks later that was set up by our friends who evidently felt the vibe between us!

Three years later Jon proposed in my favorite cozy restaurant in Los Angeles.

I always had a vision of a romantic garden wedding, but we also both loved traditional church ceremonies, and really wanted a wedding near the ocean. We thought getting married in Santa Barbara with its luscious greens, cute little streets, and breathtaking backdrop of mountains would be perfect. We chose the beautiful First United Methodist Church for the ceremony, the first church we went to. I knew it was the place I wanted to get married in when I had goose bumps as soon as I entered it.

We also fell in love with Rincon Beach Club, where we had our reception. Beautiful garden, big outside fireplace, lanterns and cabana with chandeliers… we could not ask for a better place to celebrate our love.

We wanted everything to have a natural, romantic feel, with a little bit of rustic touch. We tried to also bring personal touches like a hand sewn quilt as a guest book, entrance ceremony with traditional Russian Caraway, and childhood pictures of both me and my husband that we put on each table. We decided to use a color palette of peaches, light pinks, and gold to compliment garden greens surrounding the location. Our wonderful planners from Rincon decorated the place with beautiful flowers and hanging crystals, which made the place absolutely enchanting. Our photographers Marlene and John Koman did an amazing job capturing the romantic feel of the whole day.

What really made our day special was having our friends and family by our side the entire time. We couldn’t have asked for a more perfect wedding!

Photography: Koman Photography | Cinematography: Karl Stelter Wedding Films | Floral Design: Grass Roots | Wedding Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas | Ceremony Venue: First United Methodist Church | Bride's Shoes: Betsey Johnson | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Wtoo | DJ: David Newton, Vox Djs | Groom's Attire: Men's Wearhouse | Groomsmen's Attire: Men's Wearhouse | Wedding Venue: Rincon Beach Club | Bride's Dress: Lovella Bridal | Hair And Make-up: Dreamcatcher Artistry | Photo Booth: Vox DJs

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