Lisa and Christian were married at Little Brown Church followed by a reception at Golden Road Brewery in Atwater Village, Calif. on August 10. The bride wore a silhouette strapped a-line wedding gown with floral cutouts on the hem, while the groom wore a seersucker suit. To fit their casual theme, bridesmaids and groomsmen chose their own outfits! Bouquets and boutonnieres featured peonies, dahlias, roses, and orchids. These two nature-lovers walked down the aisle hand-in-hand to say their “I do’s.” Following the ceremony, guests arrived at a local pub filled yummy vegan foods, craft brewed beers, and lawn games galore. They were also asked to consider helping rescue a research chimp or saving an animal shelter. Favors were bags of “seeds of love” to plant. Can you guess where they went on their honeymoon? A 2-week safari to none other than Africa!
“I was very excited to shoot Caitlin and Jeff’s wedding knowing that it was going to be just a little different than the traditional. We eagerly arrived early afternoon at the family farm, and we knew immediately we were in for a treat from how calm everyone was, even the dogs, who greeted us. The ceremony was held on the front lawn – the location held a special place in the couple’s hearts. Caitlin and Jeff arrived at the outdoor reception in a candy red vintage ford. By then, the clouds had lifted, guests mingled amongst the hand-picked and crafted vintage decor and the tent was glowing with garden lights, colorful bunting, hay bails, and eclectic seating at each table.
There was a certain magic in the air that evening that I can’t really describe, you could feel the love. It was like we were attending a long overdue family reunion more than a wedding and thats the way Caitlin and Jeff wanted it. Guests were treated to a superb meal from a local catering company buffet with an build your own appetizer burrito station, to endless gourmet salads and corn on the cob to top it off. It seemed like the buffets went on forever. A homemade pie station ended the perfect meal.
After dinner, everyone’s hearts filled up with touching speeches (I think the photographers even cried!), we saw people hugging, smiling, and lots of watery eyes. A little fire pit outside kept people cozy while everyone danced without any hesitation. You could hear the laughter and guests singing out loud until it was time for us to wrap up and head home. We ended the night with one last shot – the bride and groom in a bohemian tent under the stars. Everything was perfect.” – Clint Russell of Renaissance Studios Photography
It’s been so cold here at WeddingWire HQ (“Hello, Mother Nature? It’s April!”) that we’re ready to just skip over spring and head into the heat of summer. This wedding had us dreaming of lounging in the sunshine – plus we absolutely adore the cowboy hats, the cake, and the bride’s high-low hemline dress (so ideal for a wedding in the sand!).
Which three details from your wedding were your favorites?
1. My husband, who is not an overly romantic man, suggested that it might be neat to create maps of the exact location of the stars for certain significant moments of our relationship and use these as table markers. He made these beautiful star maps for the day we met, the day we bought our house, the day we got engaged, etc. I saved them and framed them, and now they hang in our bedroom. One caught fire during the wedding after it fell onto a candle, and I was the first who noticed. I ran over, grabbed it off the table, and started stepping on it in an attempt to put the fire out – nearly igniting my wedding dress in the process. Later, we realized the one that caught fire was the map immortalizing our disastrous first date. I love that the framed version shows off the scorch marks.
It drove me nuts when people told me that my wedding day would be “perfect” and “the best day of my life.” Our wedding reflected who we are, the reality of our life together, which is pretty great but definitely not perfect. Those little scorch marks are a nice reminder that it’s important to keep a sense of reality and proportion in life.
2. We walked down the aisle together, instead of meeting at the altar. For me, this was an important symbol that we were entering into this together, as partners and equals. We’re a bit older, and we’ve lived together for years, so I didn’t want to be “given away.”
3. On the whole, our wedding was done on a budget. But I splurged and flew in a special musician from Boston for the day without telling Matt. He has this weird love for an obscure Irish instrument call the uilleann pipes, but no one in the area plays them. I found a guy who agreed to fly down just for the ceremony, and I will never forget the look on Matt’s face, just before we started down the altar, when he heard the haunting notes of the pipes coming from the garden. Totally worth it!
Give us the one moment in your wedding day you can’t stop thinking about.
Is it wrong to say my favorite part was actually the rehearsal dinner? The night before, we threw a big BBQ at our house for all the guests, not just family. We ordered in Bosnian food, because that’s where we met, and hung up a piñata and showed off our snazzy new house to all the family and friends who had flown in. The best part was when we lit our “unity volcano.” On one of our first dates, I showed up at Matt’s place with the makings of a homemade volcano, because I’d never made one as a kid and wanted to remedy that. He loved how nerdy and random that was. We built an epic volcano for the wedding, complete with a Lego bride and groom and tons of lava. Lighting up that bad boy was the ultimate way to initiate our guests into our wonderful and weird world.
I also enjoyed the very end of the evening at our wedding, after the dinner and the toasts and the dancing. We put out a box of cigars and a couple bottles of scotch, and we all dragged chairs into the lawn under the stars. I finally got to do what I had really wanted to do all day – sit down, enjoy my guests, and hang out.
1. What was the one thing about your venue that made you know it was the one?
There’s really not one thing. The farm belongs to a member of my extended family. We knew that it was a beautiful, unique setting, and that we would be able to make the day exactly what we wanted it to be.
2. Which three details from your wedding were your favorites?
1. My brother is a judge and performed the wedding.
2. The great food and cocktails: bbq smoked on-site, handmade juices, macarons and bitters
3. The farm atmosphere: cows and horses roaming in the pasture, cowboy boots, a bonfire to end the evening and the band!
3. If you could offer one piece of advice for other couples planning their wedding, what would it be?
It sounds cliché, but do it for you and not for them. You can’t please everyone, so figure out what will please you and get as close to that as you can. If you create a wedding that reflects who you are as a couple, everyone will have a great time and great memories.
4. Give us the one moment from your wedding day that you cannot stop thinking about.
We took some time toward the end of the day, as the sun was setting, to walk out into the pasture and take some pictures. It was the first time we had to ourselves all day, and we had freedom to be a bit silly.