Carmel Wedding by Sea Studio Photography
October 11, 2011
United States

Some of my all time favorite wedding celebrations on SMP are those that feel like a really gorgeous dinner party among friends. Little twinkle lights, bottles of wine and a pretty but oh-so-approachable design. So when I spotted this next beauty, photographed to perfection by Sea Studio Photography, I smiled from ear to wedding loving ear. Every last detail was thoughtfully crafted by the bride...from the wear-again style bridesmaid dresses to the chic but casual table settings. Each and ever perfect little touch represented the bride, the groom and their family to utter perfection. So kick back, relax and feast your eyes on the kind of wedding that makes us swoon and swoon and swoon some more. Oh and there is loads more in the galleries right here.

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From the bride...

I think the story starts with the proposal. We were in Anguilla which is pretty far from our home and it was perfect. Sunny, warm, calm, and beautiful.  We had to have a cool, beautiful relaxing wedding just as perfect! It was important for us to have a space and place where we could spend time with our family and close friends who came from all over the US. We live in Seattle and opted to marry in Carmel, California as my mom lives in the bay area and we wanted to create a mini destination wedding. We found the perfect place - the Holly Farm. Not only a beautiful place to get married, but a wonderful venue that housed us and our wedding party for 3 days. Everything had personality from the family who owns and operates the Holly Farm, to the houses on site for our wedding party to the beautiful amazing manicured green grounds. It felt like a tropic heaven in California with beautiful plants and too many orchids to count. The property was casual in feel but so lush special and welcoming.

As a dress buyer and a friend, I really wanted the girls to have a dress that they could wear again while at the same time being a beautiful part of the painting that was our wedding day. I chose bold purple silk dresses and they looked so good! I really thought our wedding party looked amazing giving our daytime ceremony a modern casual cocktail feel while at the same time being comfortable and looking dashing. The girls were given printed canvas tote bags from Etsy filled with personalized stationary, a handmade bracelet from Pike Place market, and other treats. The gents were given personalized flasks. The table runners were a favorite. I fell in love with the pattern and my wonderful generous mother in law transformed bolts of fabric into beautiful table runners so they were hand made and elegant! We also put little moleskin note books on the dinner tables which gave us a ton of laughs and warm hearts when we got home to read them. I wore green shoes which I bought as soon as I was engaged!

Another way we were able to really personalize the wedding was to make a few things ourselves. Our invites were a fun collaboration with a good friend. We really wanted something cool and modern looking while still being fun and functional. We made chalkboards which were perfect ways to display things like the seating, menu and desserts without using paper! The wine bottle table name displays were a labor intensive project but they were fun to make with Jeff and his mom. Instead of a guest book, we made a big silver ribbon that we used to do a celtic hand binding moment in our ceremony. We opted to have our guests "sign on the line" as our witnesses which was a special now tangible memory. My mom and some of our close women friends and family made little candied almond bundles which are a Greek tradition that gave us a special moment and connection. Other less tangible memories we made ourselves were our ceremony music playlist and our first dance choreography. We really cared about the music and the way it made our guests feel. It's our wonderful wedding soundtrack that we got great compliments on and we have still playing in the car. Now each song represents a part of our big day. For instance Arcade Fire - Wake up signaled the beginning of our playlist so now when I hear it, I'm like we're close! It's starting! We choreographed our first dance to a fun pop song and got the bridesmaids to do some excellent backup dancing! Eventually everyone was dancing along with us! Last but not least the food and drinks. We greeted our guests with Guamosas or wine and I hear they liked it! In our own personal style we served happy hour before dinner. We had an antipasto buffet and a happy hour bar grill serving my favorites - coconut shrimp, french fries and crabcakes. It was hit! The dessert buffet was great as it offered little or big bites The biggest hits were the gourmet jello shots and late night pizza! I highly recommend serving both!

Location: The Holly Farm / Photography : Sea Studio Photography / Desserts + Cake: Edith Meyer / Catering: Grapes of Wrath Catering & Event Management, Vince of Bottles 'n' Bins / DJ: Antonio of Soundshine Mobile Entertainment / Stationery: DIY by bride and friend / Hair + Makeup:  Kim Larson (831-659-3972) / Wedding Gown: Oscar De La Renta / Groom's Suit and Shoes: Hugo Boss from Nordstom / Bridesmaids' Dresses: Presley Skye / Flowers: Laughin' Gal Floral / Engagement Ring and Band: Custom / Groom's Ring: Christian Bauer / Bride's Jewelry: Borrowed from Mom, Cuff from Pike Place Market / Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Groomsmen's Attire: Kenneth Cole