wedding planning

Our Wedding / The Ceremony

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While planning our wedding the one thing we knew we wanted was a simple ceremony site. My (megan’s) dream was to say I do in a golden meadow which maaaay be why May was the chosen month for our wedding date. I knew the grass would be golden and so when we booked Figueroa Farmhouse we made sure to tell the site manager to NOT mow the grass. We wanted that gorgeous tall, golden grass to be the main focal point. Choosing simple, wooden benches for seating was a no brainer since, again, we didn’t want to take away from the view. And having Carissa of¬†JL Designs add that simple eucalyptus garland to the back row was the perfect touch.

We decided early on not to have a bridal party. We loved our friends too much to make them do all of those duties ūüėČ Plus, we just knew we wanted it to be just the two of us standing up there and while we still had a best man and moh who made the most amazing toasts during our reception we were so happy to let everyone just enjoy the day.

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One of our favorite parts of the ceremony was how we incorporated our dear friends into making it so personal. We knew early on that we wanted no one but our talented friend Nick Shattuck to sing while we walked down (and back up) the aisle. Nick and I met at one of his shows years ago and as fate would have it, became great friends and it was so special to have him serenading us and our guests. We chose Sleeping At Last’s version of I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles) yes, The Proclaimers song haha! But the version of that song that Sleeping At Last sings had me in tears all the days leading up to our wedding. And being big Johnny Cash fans we chatted with Nick and he suggested our recessional song be Ring of Fire which was SO fun to walk out to. We are just so thankful for Nick, his talents, and his willingness to take on a somewhat stressful responsibility. But he killed it, just as we knew he would.

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The other amazing choice we made for our ceremony was choosing our dear friend Israel to marry us. We both knew immediately that he would be SO good at taking on this um, daunting task and it was really important to us to have someone who knew us both, as a couple, to the the one to marry us. We wanted someone more special than just a guy we found on the internet. But you guys, you should find someone on the internet now because he needs to make his own officiant website. He was so so so so good. We are so thankful for him for taking on this huge task and knocking it out of the park. We told him we wanted our ceremony to feel like a “romantic comedy” nothing too sappy, nothing too religious, but just us. And it was absolutely perfect. One of his opening lines was “Today, promises become permanent and friends become family. This day is not about the words spoken or the rings exchanged, nor is it about grand pronouncements or recessional marches. On this day, the day of Megan and Adam, it’s about love.” HEART MELT ALL OVER THAT BEAUTIFUL MEADOW. It was everything I could have dreamed of and even with the crazy winds whipping my veil around, it was the most perfect 15 minutes of my life.

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Venue: Figueroa Mountain Farmhouse | Photographer: Brumley & Wells | Videographer: Eric Frank Cinema | Coordinator and Stylist: Beijos Events | Florist: Carissa Jowett of JL Designs | Invitations: Twinkle & Toast | Calligrapher: Poppyjack | Desserts: Sweet and Saucy Shop | Vintage Rentals: Borrowed Blu | Chairs, benches and bar: Classic Party Rentals | Tables and corn hole sets: Against the Grain | Caterer: The Pairing Knife | Dress: Sarah Seven from Lovely Bride | Suit: Klein Epstein Parker | Mr. & Mrs. Sign: The Duo Studio

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Our Wedding / Bride Style

We last shared Adams take on Groom Style and today I wanted to share all that went into my favorite outfit I’ve ever worn! I wrote a post on finding the dress here but didn’t spill ALL the deets on my actual dress. I did confess about buying my dress before we were actually engaged because I was a crazy person but it all worked out.

157_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HouseThis dress. I worried about it for months while it was being made. Worried I would hate it once I actually got it and had it in my hands but of course, it was the opposite. I loved it so hard. I had it altered to fit me a bit better (I still wish it would have been tighter in the bodice but whatever) and added the Juliette sleeves to make it a bit more romantic. Those tiny little strands of fabric were my absolute favorite part of the dress. I ended up tucking them in at the end of the night so I could dance because while they looked really really pretty, they totally made me have t rex arms and wrapping my arms around Adams neck to sway to our first dance just wasn’t going to happen with them on.

028_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_House 175_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HouseThe dress on it’s own was stunning by adding the belt really made it pop and pulled the attention to my waist (which I’m real into since it’s the only part of me that is “tiny”) The belt was definitely more than I was planning on spending on a damn belt but #yolo when it’s your wedding, right?

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I’m already sad that it’s all over and this stunning dress is just hanging in my closet but I guess I’ll keep it around for my daughter to wear or tear apart…

Dress: Clementine by Sarah Seven

Belt: Sarah Seven Gilded Belt

Shoes: Betsey Johnson “Blue”

Robe: BHLDN Venezia Robe

Hair: April Warford of Eclectic Chic Salon

Makeup: Wynter Binder

Beautiful photos all by the talented Brumley and Wells

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Our Wedding / Groom style

019_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HousePicking out the suit was the easy part, it was putting together the details that took time. I knew right away I wanted Church’s shoes, I mean, they were at one time James Bond’s favorite footwear. The watch was from Megan’s Grandfather which he was given during his time in the Navy, it was a great vintage and personal piece. I also had some vintage black cuff links which stood out against the white shirt. Finally the bow tie, have to keep it classic. There were so many options to choose from, one was from J. Crew, but the tie I ended up using was from Hackett, a London based brand. If I could add one more thing it would have been a simple white pocket square, it just steps up the outfit and looks very formal. When it comes down to it, the suit is the staple but the the devil is in the details.

As soon as Megan said “yes” it was time to start planning. When it came to buying a suit I knew exactly what I wanted. I didn’t want a rental or a simple suit, I wanted something that I could wear over and over again while looking more formal that an average two piece suit.

What typically happens is most men go for a tux rental. You show up for a fitting with your groomsmen, pick your colors and then you open it the day of your wedding and something is missing or a wrong size. I wanted to avoid this all together.

128_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HouseChoosing the suit was not clear right away. I first tried on a ready to wear Hugo Boss black suit and while it fit nicely, I just didn’t feel entirely comfortable in it. I told Megan I wanted to check out one more place, a custom tailor called Klein Epstein Parker. We went in and right away I knew it was perfect. I was able to choose everything from the color and fit of the suit to the lining and different lapel options. The tailor was incredible and listened to everything I wanted and in the end I walked away with a suit that was custom fit for me and looked amazing for the SAME price as the ready to wear Hugo boss suit.

In the end I’m really glad I invested in a custom suit. It wasn’t cheap but in the long run it was worth it. I asked a few friends what to do, a Tux or Suit? I finally realized a suit would be more practical and decided to make it more formal with a simple black color and peak lapels. This suit resembles my custom style with a perfect modern fit while staying classic.

Men, if I could give one piece of advice it would be to invest in a suit instead of renting a terrible rental tux. You will continue to get use out of it long after the wedding, unlike a wedding dress (sorry ladies).

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Our Wedding / The Guest List

044_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HouseI started this series last fall and then life happened and the blog got neglected, yet again. But I’m back with full force and promise to be better with this blog this year. I’m so excited to start sharing all of the details of the happiest day of our lives! I wanted to wait to share all the nitty gritty details of planning a wedding (in less than five months) until our wedding was published and now that it’s here, here, and here I can share with you what we couldn’t live without, what we could have done differently (not much) and what vendors to invest in.

So, you’re engaged! Hooray! What next?

009_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HouseThe first thing to do is find a coordinator/stylist that you love and hire them immediately. I wrote a post about how the ladies of Beijos Events saved our wedding. Honestly, without them it probably wouldn’t have happened. Well, maybe it would have but it definitely would not have looked as good. Next, and this is the painful part. Start figuring out your guest list. You can’t start venue/date shopping until you know how many people your venue needs to accommodate. We kind of went the opposite way on that one only because our venue was my DREAM and I couldn’t not have our wedding there. I wrote a bit about it here.

046_Brumley & Wells_fine_art_film_photography_California_destination_weding_Figueroa_Farm_HouseFor us, our venue was a top priority, which meant that our guest list took a backseat. Figueroa Farmhouse is a magical place to get married but they only allow 75 guests, including vendors. Yes, you heard that right. So we really had to think long and hard about who we wanted to be there with us. I know we hurt peoples feelings along the way but we made a decision that #1. We didn’t want to meet anyone for the first time at our wedding (with the exception of a few family members, and I mean like two). #2. No one could bring a date if they weren’t married or in a serious relationship. #3. We only wanted people there that knew us as a couple . If we had only hung out with one person in the relationship then we didn’t feel that close to them to have them on our a list. You kind of have to get brutal when it comes to this but when you have about 60 people you can invite you have no choice. Thankfully we both have really small families and chose to only invite immediate relatives which helped a lot.

For a little more help, Style Me Pretty recently shared a post about ways to trim your guest list, which was a great read!

Next up, the grooms look because why should brides have all the fun?

All photos by the amazing Brumley & Wells

Our Wedding / Hiring a Coordinator

I’m a day late BUT I wanted to talk today about the importance of hiring a wedding coordinator/planner. Waaaay before we even got engaged I knew I was going to hire a coordinator one way or another. I’ve been to enough weddings to know that having one is 1,081,932,387% worth it and I wanted to make sure that our wedding runs as smoothly as possible. Fast forward to our engagement and the wedding planning process, the Beijos girls and I had been working together for about six months by then and I loved them, loved their vibe and I knew we would be the perfect fit…and boy was I right! We got engaged in November, finally booked our venue in January and are getting married in exactly six weeks from today and guys, for being such a short engagement it’s been a pretty damn smooth process. Yes, I’ve had a few breakdowns but they are NOTHING compared to the breakdowns I would have been having without these ladies. They are the ones I can complain to about wedding related things without annoying all of my friends and the ones to brainstorm with about fun and creative ideas for the big day. I am so incredibly thankful for them and am so looking forward to the wedding day and celebrating all of our hard work together!

If you’re in the process of planning your own wedding, do yourself a favor and look into hiring a coordinator, even if it’s just a day of. Trust me, it’s worth every single penny!

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