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Santa Barbara Day After Shoot

All couples considering day after shoots – look no further. Just look at these photos from Chelsea Mitchell – you get a abundant sampling of the prettiness, but there’s a sharper focus on the bride and groom with none of the stress of squeezing it in on your wedding day. Besides, it’d be a shame not to capture this bride’s stunning Vera Wang gown and florals from Trace Robinson, right?


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Summer
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Beach

From the Bride… When Chelsea Mitchell said yes to shooting our day after wedding shoot we could not have been more excited! We absolutely love her use of film and her artistic eye! Ryan and I originally met on this same beach playing volleyball seven years ago. We thought it would be fun to revisit the location where we first met to take our first newlywed photos. Our goal with these photos was to to capture our long lasting love in artistic portraits that we could frame and keep on our walls for many years to come.

Photography: Chelsea Mitchell | Floral Design: Trace Robinson | Wedding Gown: Vera Wang, "Lark" | Groom's Attire: Ted Baker | Santa Barbara Beach: Leadbetter

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Al Fresco Wedding in Santa Barbara

Insanely romantic tidbit of the day? This sweet couple shared their first kiss high up in the Himalayas after a group hike to Mt. Everest Base Camp. Swoon. So, it’s no surprise when they made the decision to tie the knot five years later, they did it in style. With Michael & Anna Costa Photography behind the lens, this gallery is a glimpse into all the romance.

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Spring
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Romantic

From Michael and Anna Costa PhotographyDan and Lauren met in December of 2008 in Kathmandu, Nepal, where they joined the same tour group to hike to Mt. Everest Base Camp.  Dan is originally from Birmingham, England, and Lauren is originally from Bakersfield, California (but was living in Los Angeles at the time), so it seemed like fate that they both happened to travel alone to the same distant city on the same dates with the same goal. These exotic circumstances meant that Dan & Lauren’s first date was kind of a group date (there were 8 other travelers on the hike, plus guides and sherpas, who were with them at all times), and it lasted for almost 12 straight days.  Instead of the traditional flowers, the first gifts that Dan gave Lauren were a piece of string to tie her solar battery charger onto the back of her backpack, and an extra roll of toilet paper, since she had been suffering from food poisoning the first week of the hike and had run low on her own supply!  Since they had no privacy amongst the group on the hike (and no showers for 9 days of the trip), all they could do was walk, talk, laugh and learn a whole lot about one another.  Although Dan didn’t work up the courage to make a romantic move until almost the end of their journey, they shared their first kiss in Lukla (high up in the Himalayas), and after the pair parted ways in Kathmandu on New Years’ Eve, Dan was smitten enough that he booked a trip to California and came to visit Lauren in L.A. the week after she returned home. He met her parents on that trip, then she went straight back to England 2 weeks later to meet his family, and they realized things were serious.

Over the next few years, Dan and Lauren took turns giving up their homes/lives/friends and moving overseas to keep the relationship going – Lauren first quit her law firm job in L.A. and moved to England with her dog, George, in June 2009 for almost a year, then Lauren’s UK visa ran out, and in late 2010 Dan sold his electrical company in England and moved to California to try out the beach life.  After struggling with immigration issues and enduring some long gaps of time apart, they decided to get engaged and remain in California to begin their life as a married couple.

Although they were officially married in San Francisco nearly a year earlier for immigration purposes (with only the bride’s friend, Cara, as a witness), the wedding celebration in Montecito was the first time Dan and Lauren’s parents were able to meet one another during their 5-year romance. Dan and Lauren agreed the wedding day was magical, and a great way to bring the English and American families together. The private Montecito home where the wedding was held is owned by the bride’s mother and step-father (and was completed just prior to the wedding), so the bride’s mother worked tirelessly to finish up all of the landscaping and home decor in time for the big day! The home may be available to rent for weddings and other special celebrations in the future, so stay tuned!

Dan and Lauren now reside in Venice, CA, with their 2 dogs, George & Mia, where they are remodeling their new home. While he is not out training for and competing in triathlons and marathons, Dan is working on setting up a new electrical contracting company in L.A., while Lauren works as a commercial real estate lawyer for a small firm in Santa Monica.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Anna Costa | Event Planning: Davia Lee Weddings & Events | Floral Design: Grassroots | Cake: Sweet Surrender Bakersfield | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Catering: Seasons Catering | Band: DNA Band | Desserts: Crushcakes | Desserts: Vanilla Bake Shop | Hair And Make-Up: Shine Blow Dry Bar | Lighting Design: Ambient Event Design | Linens: La Tavola | Rentals: Ventura Party Rentals | Rentals: Party Pleasers | Transportation: Greg At EOS | Transportation : Limo Link | Venue: Private Residence

La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, Michael + Anna Costa Photography, Grass Roots and Ambient Event Design are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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Sunny Elings Park Wedding

In wedding-land, you just can’t beat the natural sunlight that shines down on SoCal. It’s crisp, yet soft and oh-so-romantic. And Michael & Anna Costa always capture it so beautifully. Case in point? This sweet al fresco love fest coordinated by Felici Events. Filled to the brim with succulents, gorgeous views and smiles galore, its easy to get lost in all the pretty.

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Summer
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Park
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Elegance

From the beautiful Bride… Hartley and I like to joke that we met through Craigslist. (Only semi-true.) One fortuitous 4th of July, I went over to my friend Scott’s house to hang with him and a bunch of our friends. After a mimosa or two, out waltzes his newest Craigslist roommate, a cute guy named Hartley. I’d like to say that was the beginning of our beautiful relationship, but it took some gentle cajoling from Scott and polite persistence from Hartley to get me on a real date. But one real date later, I was head-over-heels for my guy.

Three short years later, Hartley and I were married on June 22nd at Elings Park in beautiful Santa Barbara. Being from North Dakota and he from North Carolina, but both of us long-time Angelenos, we wanted to show our faraway family and friends just why we loved California so much. We wanted an outdoor venue simply because we adore the beauty of SoCal. Elings Park (Godric Grove, to be specific) was our venue from the moment we stepped foot into the park. Gorgeous views, pristine grounds, nature everywhere… it was perfect.

For our day, we knew we wanted it to be simple, we wanted it to be “us” and we wanted it to be a big ol’ love fest. Anything else would be icing on the cake. The wedding turned out to be more incredible than either of us ever imagined it could be. Our fabulous coordinator, Zohe Felici (Felici Events,) made that day so very stress-free. We showed up to the venue and were wowed by all the work she and her staff had done. She took all of our simple ideas and made them beautiful. All of our vendors added something spectacular to the event: our photographer, Anna Costa, was marvelous. She got spectacular photos and didn’t keep us from our guests for any longer than necessary. Our caterers, (Island View Catering,) kept the crowd happy and kept us better fed than any bride and groom in the history of weddings. Our DJ, (Music by Bonnie,) had put up with all our odd requests and handled the mood of the party from pre-ceremony through reception.

And above all else, our friends and family helped make it what it was. My long-time best friend officiated for us; Hartley’s dad, an incredible musician, played a very personal guitar solo during our ceremony; we asked our aunts/uncles and god parents to stand and share some marital wisdom before we said our vows. One of Hartley’s work friends who had been married at Godric Grove rented us her succulent centerpieces that she had used at her wedding, the perfect California touch. My bouquet was wrapped with Chantilly lace that my Grandmother had worn on her veil when she married my Grandfather. Hartley’s dance with his mother was the best twist-ing any of us had ever seen. Our decorations consisted of photos and our RSVP postcards where our guests had drawn pictures and written poems and sweet notes. It was so full of love and had been made so easy by everyone involved, it left us able to simply enjoy every moment.

It’s been almost a year since that day and I can remember every second of it as if it happened yesterday.

Photography: Michael & Anna Costa Photography ~ Anna Costa | Floral Design: Simply Bouquets | Catering: Island View Catering | Make-Up: La Rouge Artistry | Hair: Saralisa At Mon Amie | Lighting: The Tent Merchant | Coordination: Felici Events | Music: Music By Bonnie | Rentals: The Tent Merchant | Rentals: Marborg | Transportation: Pipeline Transportation | Wedding Venue: Elings Park

Michael + Anna Costa Photography and Felici Events are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
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