Organic Garden Affair in San Juan Capistrano
April 8, 2014
Weddings in Historical VenuesOutdoor WeddingsFall Weddings
A day chock-a-block full of weddings by Erich McVey  is such a good day in our books. His work is art, pure and simple. From London to New York and now Southern California, we're delving into an affair that blends the airy, outdoor goodness of al fresco dining with organic blooms by Stacey Fitts and the true beauty of old Spanish architecture of The Villa San Juan Capistrano. Dive into the images by Erich, then have a look at the film crafted by his talented wife, Amy McVey below.
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From the Bride... Steven and I loved the idea of having a natural, organic feel set in old California Spanish architecture. The Villa in San Juan Capistrano (a town that has a Spanish Mission from 1776) fit that image perfectly. Since the venue had so much natural beauty, (trees, stone, wood) there wasn’t much that we needed to do to make the venue shine. Our vision ended up being a fresh, clean and organic feeling with natural wood tables and canvas linens.

There are an unlimited amounts of DIY that a couple can do for their wedding. We didn’t want to spend too much time on numerous projects – so we did a few smaller items that took very little time.

The first items were hand stenciled/painted pillows. We bought some large pillows and covered them in a canvas linen material. We then printed out various phrases (Mr. & Mrs., 10.12.13, Amor which means Love in Spanish) in one of our favorite fonts – Bombshell Pro. This was then traced onto wax paper which is cut out with an X-acto knife, ironed onto the pillow and then painted. For an extra touch, the Mr. pillow had a bow tie put on it and the Mrs. had a flower.

The second item was some of our paper items. My computer savvy husband was able to create name cards, table numbers, menus and blanket tags that matched our invitation suite. All the printed paper goods helped keep costs down since we didn’t have to have our calligrapher do them (130+ items can be costly).

One of our favorite elements of the wedding were the flowers. Since there was a lot of natural beauty at the venue, we didn’t need to do too much for florals. We ended up using fresh greenery with classic white and ivory flowers. Olive branches were also placed on the tables as this ties into the California Spanish style.

Another favorite element was all the calligraphy pieces that were spread throughout the venue. We had a beautiful seating chart, bar signs, guestbook, Thank You banner, wood Mr. and Mrs. Chair signs, and a welcome sign. Each piece was completely customized to our taste – even down to the font and olive leaf laurels. These items are ones that we’ll keep forever. In fact, our bar sign (which has each of our signature cocktail recommendations) is displayed in our kitchen!

Advice for other couples:
Two things. First: At the end of the day, your wedding day is about you and your soon to be spouse – a celebration of your journey together through life. After the day is over, everyone is happy and the little things don’t matter.

Second: It’s extremely important to pick a photographer that you’re both comfortable with. During your wedding, this is who you’re (probably) spending the most time with. As this is a very nervous day for many, they know exactly what to do to help calm those nerves. For us, Erich McVey and Amy McVey were the perfect husband and wife team for us. We first met on Skype (as they’re based in Oregon) and knew within minutes that they were our team. Having met them down in Santa Barbara for our engagement session only solidified that we were in great hands.

Most memorable moment:
We were sitting at our sweetheart table and had the perfect view of all of our guests eating, laughing and just enjoying themselves. To see everything we envisioned come together so perfectly and to watch all the love and happiness flow all around us was a magical experience.