Santa Barbara Zoo Wedding
May 14, 2014
Classic WeddingsSummer Weddings
This couple is sooo awesome.  They've travelled the world together (and I mean they travelled the world), were engaged in Bali (amazing) and threw a drop-dead gorgeous wedding at the Santa Barbara Zoo that can only be described as fabulous with travel-inspired details woven throughout every moment.  It's pure perfection, all captured in beautiful images by Margaret Austin.  See them all here.
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From the Bride... We are known as the traveling couple. After having been together for less than a year, Mike and I took off on a long meandering trip around the world. We left with only a ticket to Costa Rica, our backpacks and our commitment to each other. We came home ten months later having been to more than 30 countries on six continents. Just 12 months after getting home, we took of for another year-long adventure in Australia. On our way home, Mike proposed to me in Bali with a ring from my favorite market in Sydney.

Our various journeys together are an integral part of who we are a a couple. Needless to say, we wanted our wedding to reflect that. But we didn’t want to have a theme wedding, per se. We didn’t want our relationship to be solely defined by our travels, so we chose to have use internationally themed touches woven into the other intimate accents to a simple, casual wedding.

We wanted our wedding to be as close to a representation of us as a couple as possible. We chose not to do wedding parties, but found other roles for the important people in our lives. Our ceremony was performed by a close friend in among the palms at the Santa Barbara Zoo. Our photographer was also one of our dearest friends. My brother played acoustic guitar for the ceremony, including a beautiful, understated version of “Highway to the Danger Zone” for the procession. Mike’s brother Rod signed the paperwork (mostly so we could say “As Rod as our witness”). Our primary color was the soft aqua of the ocean on a faded map. We used vintage maps placed in lanterns as our centerpieces. We had a welcome table that had handmade programs (filled with fun facts about Mike and me) and our favorite international sodas for people to sip on. We had a Polaroid guest book so we’d always have an image to go along with people’s well-wishes. The reception was in an open grass area with just a few strings of lights hanging above. We put most of the emphasis for the evening on fun rather than formality. Our family’s speeches were brief, but beautiful. Our soundtrack was entirely dance music. We chose to eschew traditional elements like the bouquet toss, cake cutting and father-daughter dance to allow a looser, more energetic atmosphere. We had a fire pit with s’mores supplies just off the dance floor for people who wanted a break.

I wouldn’t change anything about our wedding. Every element was truly ours.