SUBMIT WEDDING
The Cutest French Café Wedding Ever

Dom and Amanda first met at a restaurant, so celebrating their wedding at Colette Grand Café felt like coming full circle. They wanted an intimate affair with only their closet friends and family, and the pros behind Lexington and Co. Events helped them achieve exactly that. Amanda stunned in an ethereal Carol Hannah skirt, which was graciously gifted by a fellow bride she met online! Read the full story below and don’t miss a single image from the incredible ARTIESE Studios.

From the bride, Amanda… Dom and I met in the summer of 2014, shortly after he moved to Toronto, at a busy downtown restaurant. Being the cheeky flirt that I am, I took off his baseball hat and put it on my head. He later told me that he fell in love in that moment. One drink turned into dinner, which turned into a second dinner at another restaurant down the street, and so began our shared love of good food, good wine, laughter, and being together. We have been inseparable ever since.

We wanted to create a special, intimate celebration with just close family and friends. As soon as we walked into Colette Grand Café, we fell in love with the space and booked it right away. The décor is classic French style: warm and elegant. The ceremony took place in the sunny white latticework pavilion outside, framed with hanging ivy pots and a floral backdrop.

We have such a talented group of artists in our family and circle of friends, and they added so much sparkle to the day. Family and friends played acoustic Edith Piaf and Beatles songs during the ceremony and classic love songs by Dean Martin during the cocktail reception. My mom read a beautiful indigenous poem that left not a dry eye in the room. My aunts did makeup and dress alterations, and my cousin made our vintage-inspired, delicious wedding cake. Exquisite details by my sister-in-law, who runs a DIY blog, tied everything together with a bow.

I would be remiss not to mention a very special person I met throughout this process. When we started planning the wedding, I came across the dress online. It was a skirt, actually. An ethereal, blush pink linen skirt worn by a beautiful bride named Katie who lives in Pennsylvania. I called a store in Toronto that carries the designer, Carol Hannah, told them I wanted to buy the skirt, and made a fitting appointment. My mom and I showed up on appointment day to take measurements, and when we got there, the owner of the shop told me that there had been a mixup, and that my dress wouldn’t arrive in time for the wedding. I was heartbroken. I called seamstresses to see if it could be recreated. It couldn’t. I called other boutiques across North America that sold the skirt. No one would sell me a sample. As a last resort, I emailed the photographer, who photographed Katie’s wedding, and explained the situation. The photographer promised me he would contact her. That night, I got an email from Katie. She said she wanted me to have the dress, and that she would put it in the mail the next day. Her only request was that I send her a picture of me in the dress, so that she could put it next to hers. I will never tire of telling this story. It’s an uplifting reminder of the good in people, and the kind of person I want to be.

Special thanks to our wedding planner Lexi for bringing our vision to life, and photographer Therese for capturing the most memorable day of our lives with such grace and professionalism. We ate dinner by candlelight, we laughed, and we cried. Just me, my best friend, and the people we love. It was the perfect way to start our life together.

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Photography: ARTIESE Studios | Wedding Planning: Lexington And Co Events | Floral Design: Timberlost Designs | Gown: Carol Hannah | Cake: For the Love of Sweets | Reception Venue: Colette Grand Cafe | Makeup: Teresa Bove | Hair: Tony Pham of LAC + CO | DJ: Andrew Kekewich | Favors: Buy Some Love | Groom's Attire: Neil Barrett | Groomsmen's Attire: Suitsupply | Officiant: Enduring Promises | Venue: Colette Grand Cafe | Alterations: Lori Barnes | Decor: Fish & Bull | Musicians: Matt Dawson, Arjun Lombardi-Singh, Jacob Gelcer, Jim Gelcer

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A Cherry Blossom Printed Dress for the Ultimate Spring Inspiration

There are about a million reasons to adore this spring shoot, but first and foremost? The bride’s cherry blossom printed gown by Monique Lhuillier. It set the tone for a shoot filled with unexpected whimsy and Hylah White, Stacie Ford, Seniman Calligraphy, and La Tavola are a few key vendors who brought the vision to life. Spring brides, consider these images by Rebecca Yale all the inspiration you’ll ever need.

From Rebecca Yale… For this Spring wedding editorial we were inspired by the beauty of Kestrel Park, a 19th Century English Country home and gardens located in the heart of Santa Ynez, CA. Hylah White Special Events chose French blue to be the main color inspiration to play off the European feel of the venue. We loved how the light shade of blue complemented the cherry blossoms that were in bloom throughout the garden, which led us to choose a stunning cherry blossom printed gown from Monique Lhuillier’s unique RTW collection for our fashion forward bride’s ceremony dress.

Continuing the garden inspiration our bride changed into another beautiful RTW Monique Lhuillier gown with a beautiful high low hem allowing her to show off her beautiful floral booties designed by Joy Proctor for Bella Belle Shoes. Afterwards, the bride changed into a third stunning Monique Lhuillier bridal gown with a gorgeous lace bodice and layer upon layer of magnificent tulle for some golden hour portraits in the beautiful rolling hills of Santa Ynez.

The incredible Felissa from Of The Flowers made three unique bouquets inspired by each gown. Stacie Ford and Caitlynn Demetrician for Stacie Ford created beautiful and natural hair and makeup looks for each gown embracing and playing up the bride’s beautiful natural curls with delicate foliage inspired hair pieces by Hushed Commotion.

The reception table was set between the magnificent garden hedges and the stone castle-like horse stables, truly making the entire day feel like a fairy tale! Guests were welcomed to their seats with hand calligraphed place settings on their seats and each place setting had a beautiful torn edge menu with the same wax seal as the invitation.

Of the Flowers and Hylah White Special Events paired white and green centerpieces with beautiful marble slabs and a mixture of silver and crystal candlestick holders with french blue candles. Not to leave a detail untouched the scent of the flowers from the table was just as beautiful as the tablescape looked! A lovely dessert table was set beneath the blooming wisteria on the other side of the stables with macaron towers from Bottega Louie. The perfect ending to a fairytale wedding day!

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Photography: Rebecca Yale Photography | Floral Design: Of The Flowers | Invitations: Jasmin Michelle Designs | Shoes: Bella Belle | Ring: Trumpet & Horn | Makeup: Stacie Ford Weddings | Hair: Caitlynn Demetrician for Stacie Ford | Calligraphy: Seniman Calligraphy | Tuxedo: The Black Tux | Venue: Kestrel Park | Desserts: Bottega Louie | Earrings: Chanel | Event Planner + Stylist: Hylah White Special Events | Female Model: Ciara Williams | Gowns: Monique Lhuillier | Hair Accesories: Hushed Commottion | Linen: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Ring Box : The Mrs Box | Silk Ribbons and Table Runner: Silk + Willow | Tabletop: borrowed BLU | Vow Books: Seniman Calligraphy

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Style Alert: Our Fave Dress Trends for Spring 2017

It doesn’t take much to convince us that JLM Couture knows everything there is to know about stunning bridal + bridesmaid gowns, but their latest Spring 2017 Collections? Sooo on point. Think soft, romantic fabrics, feminine silhouettes and a modern elegance that is basically everything you’ve ever wanted. Pop that bubbly and celebrate the new season with some of our fave trends below.

ROMANTIC FABRICS + DETAILS

Spring? It’s all about the romance. And the new styles from the JLM Couture Spring 2017 Collections do NOT disappoint. Think an entire world of soft, lightweight fabrics and intricate details that will literally WOW your guests and you are sooo on the right track. From the hand-appliquéd lace + sheer fabric of the Hayley Paige collection to the luxurious shimmer of Lazaro to the lace-filled goodness of Tara Keely, they’ve got you completely covered.

FEMININE SILHOUETTES

We all want to look stunning on THE big day, so when searching for that perfect gown, finding one that shows off your beautiful figure is key. With the JLM Couture Spring 2017 Collections, there’s an entire world of jaw-droppingly gorgeous gowns that will make you feel (and look) beyond amazing. We’re talking the classic meets modern styles of Alvina Valenta, the uber-romantic looks of Blush by Hayley Paige and the traditional (with a twist) designs of Jim Hjelm. Looking fab has never been easier… or more breathtaking.

EFFORTLESS ELEGANCE

The key to a gorgeous wedding day? Finding a gown that lets you shine. And that’s where JLM Couture and their new Spring 2017 Collections come in to play. Whether you’re a boho bride looking for a touch of vintage elegance (hello, Ti Adora) or a classic lady who loves a pretty twist (two words: Tara Keely), each amazing gown in the JLM Couture lineup has effortless elegance down to an absolute science.

Ready to celebrate the new season by finding that gown of your dreams? Head to JLM Couture today to check out all of the breathtaking styles from Hayley PaigeLazaroAlvina Valenta, Jim HjelmTara KeelyBlush by Hayley Paige and Ti Adora. And don’t forget to soak in all of the lovely party + bridesmaid dress options from Hayley Paige Occasions. Your dream gown is sooo waiting.

Bridal Gowns: JLM Couture

A Monterey Wedding that will Make You Fall Hard for Boho Style Elegance

There is a signature Beijos Events style that always involves beautiful florals, bright pops of color and an elegant bohemian feel and we just can’t get enough of it. Now enter this Monterey gem and it is right in keeping with all that pretty. Crafted with blooms and garland by Wild Child Flowers, a whole lot of great signage by Meghann Miniello and all the heart-felt moments captured by Yasmin Sarai, this is a wedding gallery so worth getting lost in.

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Settings
Garden
Styles
Bohemian

From Beijos Events… I might be biased but this was the perfect couple, and the perfect wedding to design and plan. The bride is my beautiful sister, Ally. She was the easiest bride to deal with; you think it would be opposite since it was a sibling. She had complete trust in me and pretty much didn’t ask any questions. She wanted something very simple, pretty, and it had to include pink flowers, and most of all it had to be a party, not a typical wedding. Those were my rules. All she wanted was to have the best party every, and for all family and friends to join in with them. What was most special is that she had no idea what expect the day of, so just like the guests, she was getting the 1st look at she walked down the aisle.

We first found Memory Garden while getting lunch at Portola Hotel, and stumbled upon this quiet and hidden gem. She immediately fell in love, and that was it. Abby, you work out the rest of the details to make this happen here, she said. And so I did. Having a small space to work with was quite a challenge to get both the ceremony and reception setup in the same location. Along with over 200 people she invited. It was an intimate wedding party, just siblings and the cutest flowers girls and ring bearers that I have ever seen. Ok, I’m biased.. Having two be my littles and my niece and nephew.

Wild Child Flowers created an amazing floral greenery cacti backdrop which flowed up the stairs to where Ally and Jared would say I do. The ceremony was very non-traditional, it was all about Ally + Jared and to celebrate becoming one. All the readings were not out of the Bible, or a particular traditional wedding poem, or even a typical song lyric. They were rap song lyrics from 2pac and Biggie Smalls which somehow totally made sense while they were being read out loud. The officiant was our cousin who married my husband and I back in 2010. It’s pretty special you can say family married you.

For the reception, we had long wooden tables that were placed among the breathtaking garden. The table setting consisted of rose gold flatware, vintage pink glassware from Danny Thomas, and blush leather name cards done by Meghann Miniello. Each table had a wooden laser cut table number as well. Bright hues of pinks and corals flowers filled up the tables. To find your place, Meghann Miniello created a wooden sign that was adorned with floral greenery from Wild Child Flowers.

The night was filled with hilarious speeches, and heartfelt ones as well. Family and friends ate and drank One Hope Wine and signature cocktails under the stars. Our family is known for cutting up a rug at weddings, and this one goes down in the books. Most of the songs will usually be Michael Jackson, and you will find every single family member on the dance floor. Even myself that has no moves what so ever. Even grandma got out there and busted a move or two! We honored those were not with us anymore that were a huge part in our lives. My grandma made a red heart out of one of my grandpa’s old favorite ties, and gave each granddaughter one that she sewed into our dresses. We placed a always remember wooden sign on an empty chair for Jared’s uncle who had just recently passed away. This was truly one magical night for two people so in love, and I couldn’t have been more proud and honored to help make it the night they will remember forever. 

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Photography: Yasmin Sarai Photography | Event Design: Beijos Events | Event Planning: Beijos Events | Flowers: Wild Child Flower | Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero | Invitations: Meghann Miniello | Bride's Shoes: Lu Lu Blush Heels | Catering: Grapes Of Wrath Catering | Groom's Attire: Macy's | Bridesmaids' Dresses (Abby): Show Me Your Mumu | Custom Napkins + Cocktail Stirrs: For Your Party | Flower Girl Dresses: H & M | Flower Girl Shoes: Zara | Glassware Rentals: Danny Thomas Party Rentals | Historic Park (Monterey, CA): Memory Garden | Ring Bearer Bowtie: Little Subtle Arrow | Ring Bearer Outfit: J.Crew | Signage: Meghann Miniello | Wine: One Hope Wine