When this gorgeous Bride and Groom began planning their dream wedding, they knew they wanted a beach wedding with a certain level of elegance. And, based on these gorgeous photos from Jonathan Young, it’s safe to say they got it. From the ceremony in the sand to the classic tented reception, every detail of this day is elegant beach wedding perfection. See all the pretty in The Vault!
From The Bride…Zach and I met in college and after dating for almost 7 years we got engaged just before New Years on a hike to the top of Aspen Mountain. It was picture perfect! Surrounded by family and friends we immediately fielded questions about where and when we wanted to get married and we didn’t hesitate in choosing the Hamptons. I grew up going there in the summer and now my dad lives there full time so we’ve been fortunate enough to spend a lot of time there. With our mutual love for the beach, we couldn’t wait to share such a special place with our friends and family. September is such a beautiful time out East so we decided to enjoy a longer engagement, which also gave us plenty of time to plan our wedding from across the country since we live in San Francisco. I actually loved the planning process, so I was happy to have plenty of time to really think through every decision and keep the stress to a minimum!
It’s been my dream since I was a little girl to get married on the beach, but we wanted to ensure a certain level of elegance too. We didn’t want it to feel like a casual family clambake, although we certainly love those! We wanted a classic but casual elegance to really inform the design and feel of the day and we were fortunate enough to find The Bridgehampton Club for our venue which allowed us to have our ceremony on the sand and also have a Sperry Tent that was a bit more protected from the what could be harsh conditions on the beach. It was the best of both worlds!
For the ceremony on the beach I really didn’t want to over-decorate and compete with the natural beauty of the beach and the ocean. We decided to go with white benches rather than chairs to keep things as casual and natural as possible. Instead of doing an archway or something similar to mark the altar, we decided to add beach grass to define the space while still feeling appropriate for the beach. And of course, Claire Bean truly executed it perfectly. We also loved designing our own ceremony from song selections, to readings, to writing our own vows. It all felt so perfectly us and I think our friends and family would agree!
In true Hamptons fashion, we went with a blue and white color palette keeping the flowers primarily white with pops of greenery. We brought in the navy blue with throw pillows for the chaises during cocktail hour, hand-stitched napkins with our wedding logo, customized menus that also acted as our place cards and blue and white ginger jars filled with hydrangeas to flank the dance floor. One of my favorite DIY details was the escort cards that we designed. Zach and I, and the majority of our friends, were members of The Tiger Inn in college. We designed our escort cards to mimic a TI pass. We though it would give everyone a laugh! At cocktail hour, his and hers cocktails were inspired by our dog Jake, a Labrador Retriever who sadly had to stay home. We were worried he’d try to go swimming during the ceremony! Zach’s choice was a “Ginger Lab” and mine a “Salty Dog.” The dinner menu was inspired by all of the incredible local bounty in the Hamptons — we served a burrata salad to start, the Groom’s favorite, and then the guests were given a choice of striped bass or chicken for the main course. It was delicious!
I’m not quite sure how to go about choosing one moment as my favorite part of the day. Zach and I decided that we wanted to do a first look prior to the ceremony. While it certainly allows you to spend more time with your guests during cocktail hour and the reception, it also was important for us to see each other so we could calm our nerves. I knew that once I saw Zach and we had a special moment alone, I would feel totally calm, at ease, and ready to get married! I also did a first look with my Dad, which was so wonderfully emotional and the perfect way to start such a magical day. I got dressed in my room with my mom and bridesmaids and walked down the stairs to see my dad holding my bouquet. He wanted me to keep my dress a secret, so it was pretty emotional when he saw me in my wedding gown for the first time! Another memorable moment was during the ceremony when our good friend Kyle came up to do his reading of the Apache Wedding Blessing. Zach published a novel last year — Kings and Pawns, check it out on amazon! — and Kyle came up to do his reading out of Zach’s book! Everyone laughed and at first I thought they must be laughing at me! It was such a fun touch. Kudos to Kyle on that one!
We cannot thank all of our vendors enough for making our vision really come to life. And the weather! I’m not quite sure what we did to deserve such perfection, but we couldn’t be happier about it! And a special thank you to Claire Bean who made planning a wedding from so far away such a wonderful, fun experience and really getting us. She even went so far as to decorate the chandeliers with my favorite flowers — hydrangeas — which really escalated the understated, but lush florals that we wanted for the reception. Walking into the tent for our first dance my draw dropped. It was even better than I could have envisioned it. And I spent a lot of time envisioning it! The party would also not be the same without our fabulous band, 45 Riots. One piece of advice I would give to a bride-to-be would be to consider doing a mini dance set prior to dinner. It was so fun to get everyone up on the dance floor after our first dance and get them really excited for all the dancing that was to come. A key factor for us in our wedding planning was to have one big fun dance party and 45 Riots made that happen. Every since person danced the night away with us! We went so far as to choose a final song — Billy Joel’s Piano Man — which had everyone singing along. In fact everyone put their arms around one another and created a big circle around the dance floor swaying back and forth singing. Zach then pulled me into the middle for our final dance of the night. It was an unforgettable moment and an unforgettable night!
Photography: Millay & Young Photography | Wedding Dress: Peter Langner | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Amsale | Catering: Brent Newsome | Band: 45 Riots | Groom's Attire: Acustom Apparel | Groomsmen Attire: The Black Tux | Venue: Bridgehampton Club | Bridal Boutique: Mark Ingram Atelier | Event Planning + Floral Design: Claire Bean Events | Photography - Assistance: Tanya Salazar Photography | Rentals: Party Rentals Ltd | Tent Rentals: Sperry Tents Hamptons