Los Angeles DIY Wedding at SmogShoppe by Hazelnut Photography
May 29, 2012
United States
DIY Inspired

Anyone that reads SMP knows that we love us some SmogShoppe weddings. It's probably the single most featured wedding venue on this blog and one that we continually look to for inspiration and ideas. Mainly because it's a backdrop that doesn't take itself too seriously and lends itself to become the perfect canvas for chic, modern weddings and whimsical, free spirited celebrations alike. So when you layer on some billy balls, a FABulous bride and pops of pretty yellow, well, you have SMP perfection. Just make sure to check out the full gallery of details snapped by Hazelnut Photography when you have a chance. Worth every second.

Click here for the FULL wedding!

From the Bride... After our engagement, Eric and I had to make the tough decision of whether to get married in LA or our home state of North Carolina. We finally settled on LA so it could be a mini destination wedding for our friends and family, and we could get married in the beautiful SmogShoppe. To us it is the epitome of LA style, with gorgeous succulents lining the walls and beautiful reclaimed wood benches and tables. But with a very limited budget to work with, we knew we had to incorporate as much of the natural beauty the Smog Shoppe has to offer as possible into our wedding. Since it's so perfectly decorated already, it enabled us to go minimal with the flowers and table decor, which definitely helped save some big money. For the reception tables, I spent a lot of time on eBay and Craigslist sourcing vintage yellow planters, milk glass vases, and mason jars. Then, months before the wedding, we set up a mini greenhouse in our one bedroom LA apartment to let the succulents start growing in the planters. We got some craspedia from the LA Flower Market a few days before the wedding, votive candles from Michael's and ta-da! Centerpieces. It didn't hurt that the geniuses at Tact Event Management put it all together beautifully with pretty much no instruction (thanks again, guys!). I'm so glad we made that decision because everything about our wedding day ended up being absolutely perfect.

For the ceremony we were lucky enough to have Eric's sister and brother-in-law marry us. We knew we didn't want some stranger officiant we found on the internet marrying us, so they were kind enough to come to LA a few days early from NC to become deputized for a day in the state of California. They had to take a class and get sworn in and everything. This was definitely a large part of making our wedding day extra personal and special. One of my favorite moments we incorporated into the ceremony was when we passed around a little homemade pillow with our wedding bands tied to it. All of our guests got to take a moment to put a blessing or wish for our marriage on the rings before we exchanged them. I think it made the ceremony more intimate and helped us really connect with everyone as a part of our wedding rather than just observers.

Like I said before, the whole wedding, especially the reception, was very DIY. Partially for budget reasons, but mostly because I'm obsessed with crafting and I wanted to feel like every little detail of the wedding was tailored to us. I spent far more time than I'd like to admit on all these little details, but I'm very proud of the outcome. Another element of the reception that was fun for us was not telling our parents what songs would be played for the first dances. Eric chose "Your Song" by Elton John, which was the song his parents had their first dance to. And I chose Bruce Springsteen's song "When You Need Me," which ended up being extremely emotional for me and my dad (he's a super fan of The Boss). I've never seen my dad cry that hard or hold me that tight. It was definitely a moment I'll never forget. The whole day was perfect. Lot of love, laughs, friends, family, food and drinks. I couldn't have asked for anything more, and almost a year later I still think about it every day. I am extremely thankful we had the amazing Jordana Hazel there to capture everything from the teensie-tiny details to aerials of the entire venue.

Wedding Photography: Hazelnut Photography / Wedding Venue: SmogShoppe in Los Angeles, California / Floral Design: Gilly Flowers & Events / Wedding Coordination: Tact Event Management / Wedding Cake: Lark Cake Shop / Cupcakes: Sprinkles Cupcakes / String Quartet: Divisi Strings / Guest Book, Succulents, Napkin Rings, Photo Booth: DIY / Wedding Invitations: DIY with a Letterpress Plate from Boxcar Press / Wedding Dress: Wtoo / Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Hair: Danielle Cedillo / Makeup: Tara Loren