Bernardus Lodge and Spa, Carmel Valley Wedding - BrieAnn and Ryan

What a sweet wedding! I've had some really small intimate weddings this year and just love them (my own was only immediate family!). BrieAnn and Ryan chose Bernardus Lodge in the Carmel Valley for their wedding and I could see why as soon as I got there! It's set on one side of the valley so has views to the opposite side hills, has all sorts of gardens, vineyards and nooks and crannies to explore and it's lovely gorgeous, quiet and luxurious. What a pretty setting for a small wedding. Plus BrieAnn said they could do everything there! Rehearsal dinner, lodging, and wedding!

It was all about their closest family and friends and the food and wine. Given the lunch I had near the pool before I started shooting, the food is luxurious too! Wanda Straw did an amazing job keeping things flowing and Aga Kazmierczak put together the stunning flowers. I especially loved the "arch" over the bride and groom during the ceremony.

BrieAnn stunned in her simple Amy Kuschel gown and even though I had very limited time with the newlyweds for photos, we had fun and I couldn't go wrong with how sweet they were together AND the gorgeousness of the property.

Congratulations to BrieAnn and Ryan!

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Carmel Valley Wedding

Venue: Bernardus Lodge & Spa

Dress: Amy Kuschel, Little White Dress Denver

Coordinator: Stacey Clapp of Bernardus Lodge & Spa and Wanda Straw, Day-of-Planner

Event Designer & Florist: Aga Kazmierczak, Unskripted Design

Caterer: Bernardus Lodge & Spa

Hair & Makeup: Blush Studio

Music: Tim Marconett, Ivy Hill Entertainment

Fairmont San Francisco Wedding: Christina and Hans

Such a classic San Francisco wedding was Christina and Hans'! I hadn't been to St. Dominic's church in San Francisco in a very long time and it was great to be back. It's such a gorgeous church and YOWSA! That veil of Christina's was a stunner for a classic SF cathedral wedding. So lovely!

Christina was not only lovely to look at, but a lovely personality too as was her new hubby Hans. We hit it off from the second we met. I walked home from my meeting with them and told my husband I hoped to shoot the wedding I liked them so much. So sweet and down to earth and I always love shooting classic weddings so it was a big treat when they decided to move forward.

I wasn't disappointed. They stayed true to their lovely spirits on the wedding day and their friends and family were fabulous as well. Christina was absolutely stunning in her Enzoani gown. I couldn't stop taking pictures of her. Hans looked proud and completely in love when he saw is bride walk down the aisle. Such a sweet moment. After the church ceremony we went with the bridal party to the little park on top of Nob Hill and despite the rare 80 degree day, we found a shady spot to do their bridal party photos and then off to the Fairmont Crown Room for the festivities!

The Crown Room looked terrific and all pulled together by the Dreams on a Dime team. I loved the cascading wall of flowers behind the head table too. Laura Auyeung of Poppy Petalworks rocked the florals! Christina's mother made the favors which was such a personal touch.

I just loved this couple and am so happy they are so happy with their photos. We had a blast and well, quite frankly, I couldn't go wrong! Congrats Christina and Hans!

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Beaulieu Garden Wedding | Julie and Russell

Julie and Russell chose the Beaulieu Garden property for their stunning wedding and it's one of my favorite wine country venues so I was thrilled to photograph it. Despite the large property, their wedding was a wedding for immediate family on a Thursday and although fancier than mine, it reminded me of my own wedding which was on a Tuesday in Yosemite Valley so it was especially fun to photograph!

Thank goodness their day was so incredible, because Julie and Russell had one of the craziest wedding week stories I had ever heard! Their rental car was broken into in SF TWO DAYS before the wedding and in the rental car were their wedding rings, their marriage license, their passports, all of the tuxedos, and the groom's suitcase which contained all of his clothes for their month-long honeymoon. Oh my! How do you recover from that one? Well, miraculously, the police found the car near an alley and they searched the people who were in the alley near the car and recovered the wedding rings and passports! Isn't that unbelievable?! Anyway, they were able to secure a last minute wedding license and then did a LOT of shopping to replace clothing in the couple of days after the wedding so with their wedding rings on their fingers they flew off safely. Whew. Now that's a story!

Despite all that happened before their wedding, their wedding day was incredible. Paula Le Duc Fine Catering is the exclusive caterer at Beaulieu and their service and food is always stunningly perfect. Valley Flora's flowers were a great addition to an already gorgeous venue and Aimee Wendel of 2chic Events made sure everything ran smoothly.

As for Julie and Russell, well, Julie was incredible in her Amsale gown and luxuriously flowing hair done by Sheerie Long and Russell smiled and laughed all day long never complaining about the near 100 degree heat. He just couldn't keep his eyes off his bride! His two darling boys too! This was a stunning but also intimate affair and pulled off perfectly. So happy for Julie and Russell!

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The University Club Wedding, San Francisco - Susan and Michael!

Another fabulous (and intimate) San Francisco wedding! Susan is from the midwest (as am I) so I had a blast photographing her and her family and hearing that familiar midwest accent all day!

I had never photographed at the University Club (kept getting it mixed up with the Commonwealth Club!). Loved this club almost at the top of Nob Hill right down the hill from The Fairmont. The ceremony and reception were in the same room and the room was classic San Francisco. The views were so pretty and we were able to do our photo session at the park on top of Nob Hill, so got a little bit of nature and green in with our city venue shots. Also loved the classic old school bar in this venue.

I loved Susan's hair done by Julianne Chai of Prettyologie. As she said, she wanted is "shellacked" to her head which I thought was hilarious. Indeed it was a gorgeous slick low bun which was stunning with her classic lace Allure gown. She looked great and Michael couldn't stop beaming the whole day when he looked at her!

Elizabeth Bainbridge of 2the9s Events did a fabby job doing the day of coordinating and The University Club food was terrific! Just look at that sushi! The florals by Red Sparrow Floral Design were simple and elegant and fit right in with the sophisticated urban style of this wedding.

Stunning and simple intimate wedding. So much fun to photograph. Congrats to Susan and Michael!

 

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Marin Art and Garden Center Wedding - Elysha and Dennis

Lovely, lovely late spring garden wedding! I love shooting at Marin Art and Garden Center because it's usually all one location. Why wouldn't it be when it has the most lovely grounds? Perfect for a wedding! Especially in mid-May when their rose garden is in full bloom. Wowsa. Gorgeous!

Meredith Law did such a gorgeous job with the florals. Dennis (the groom!) made the huppah and I loved the fern bases to the posts and wispy corners with ribbons up top. Dreamy. The incredible centerpieces looked like they had all been flowers plucked at this gorgeous garden itself and accompanied by lanterns, potted plants and baskets it made for the perfect fit. The food was also incredible and catered by mediterranean restaurant Insalata's for some more local flair.

The fabulous staff at Marin Art and Garden did some light coordinating, but this wedding was all about family and friends and enjoying a lovely wedding and meal in the garden. Elysha and Dennis couldn't wipe the smiles off of their faces. Especially when along together for our photo sessions, during their ceremony and during their first dance. It was just pure joy and loveliness all around. Congrats to Elysha and Dennis!

Meritage Resort and Spa - Conor and Nick

Conor and Nick wanted their dream wedding to be in wine country and dreamy is what they got! Supported by family and friends, they took time out of their incredibly busy medical careers to fly out for the weekend to tie the knot in CA. A destination wedding for them (they are from Chicago), they spent the weekend enjoying gorgeous weather, wine and food with friends and family.

Such a relaxed and informal pair, they managed to pull off a gorgeous wedding with the help of coordinator Kate Whelan and florist Flourish. The Meritage's relatively new ceremony area on a hilltop with an old gazebo was the perfect setting for this intimate ceremony with Greek traditional touches honoring Nick's heritage.

Then to a fabby party with loads of gorgeous food by the chefs at Meritage and then a really fun dance party to follow. It looked like Nick and Conor had the time of their lives surrounded by family and friends. I'm not sure the smiles ever left their faces! Congrats to Nick and Conor!

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Coordinator: Kate Whelan

Florist: Flourish

Suit's: Bzach Chicago

DJ: Boutique Dj's

The Fairmont Gold Room - Angela and Casey

Oh how I love The Fairmont in San Francisco and I was more than thrilled to finally photograph a wedding reception in the Gold Room. I love that classic gorgeous ballroom and had only photographed a corporate event in the room in the past. 

Angela and Casey had a jam-packed wedding day starting at the Fairmont getting ready and then we all got on the road to the east bay for the ceremony. On the way we got trapped by a China town parade until father-of-the-bride convinced the SF police to hold up the parade so we could get to the church in time! So funny in retrospect, but a little nerve wracking day of!

I love the big Greek Orthodox cathedrals and weddings. So gorgeous and full of tradition. Angela and Casey tied the knot in a classic Greek Orthodox Ceremony at the Ascension Cathedral in Oakland and then we all got back into the city for the cocktail hour in the Fountain Room at The Fairmont and then dinner in the gold room.

Angela stunned all in her Monique Lhuillier gown. I kept thinking while I photographed her that she looked like Audrey Hepburn. Lucky me as a photographer! The florals by Katherine Bergman were classic and beautiful and I loved how they added to the gorgeousness of the Gold Room. Jessica Goldblatt with Dreams on a Dime did a great job coordinating the day, even racing from The Fairmont to Oakland to bring the bride's veil which had been forgotten at the hotel. Now THAT is above and beyond and it was just in time!

The party was raging when I left and given the Fairmont's generous rental hours, I believe the party went until midnight with some great Greek dancing traditions and fun music by a DJ for some more contemporary dancing. What a fun day for all! Congrats to Angela and Casey!

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Healdsburg Country Gardens - Cara and Matt

Admittedly I was a little nervous about going to Healdsburg Country Gardens to shoot because it's under new ownership, but I was pleasantly surprised at the changes. Although I miss the gorgeous rose garden the previous owners had put in, I do love the new cocktail area the open space now provides. Still one of my favorite properties in wine country!

Cara and Matt were a lovely couple to work with. So in love and they had such a fun party! All about family and friends, wine and food. A perfect setting for a great couple! Flutter Events did such a nice job for them preparing and Alisha O'Connor was there the day of making sure everything ran perfectly.

The flowers by Daisy Rose were truly as if they were picked right out of the garden per Cara's wishes and the food by the always fabulous Girl and the Fig was amazing. Cara and Matt love hanging out in wine country and listening to country music so the bluegrass band One Button Suit was great fun both during the ceremony and during cocktails and dinner.

Just such a perfect and pretty wedding. Congratulations, Cara and Matt!

Bridal gown and boutique: La Soie Bridal in Sacramento, Dress by Enzoani
Shoes: Ceremony shoes: Stuart Weitzman. Reception Boots: Lucchese
Bridesmaid dresses: Donna Morgan
Formalwear: Combatant Gentleman
Hair piece: Bel Aire Bridal
Jewelry: Rings from Mark Allen Jewelers, Santa Rosa.
Day of Wedding Coordinator: Alisha O'Connor
Event Designer: Flutter Events
Florist: Daisy Rose, Sonona
Caterer: Girl and the Fig, Sonoma
Baker: Mustache Bakery, Healdsburg
Stationer: Susan Gildea Personalized Printing, Berkeley
Hair and Makeup: Powder Room, Santa Rosa
Music: Ceremony/Cocktail: One Button Suit. Dinner/Dancing: DJ Bart
Guest favors: Homemade Jalapeno Jelly by Joy Patterson (MOB)
Chalkboards: Nicki Wolfe. Calligraphy: The Calligraphy Girl
Rentals: Encore Events Rentals, Healdsburg

 

Tilden Botanic Gardens and BROC Cellars - Kirsten and Tim!

OK, not only is Kirsten my dear friend, she is also my former studio-mate and an incredibly talented photographer. Photographing her wedding was an honor and a great gift I could give to my dear friend and her new husband.

I loved their intimate day. Berkeley is their home and they decided to treat their friends and family to a wedding Berkeley-style with a very sophisticated and austere twist. Honoring Kirsten's Los Angeles style and Tim's love of the outdoors became a great theme for this simple and lovely wedding focused on family, friends and their love of food and wine! Surrounded by family and friends in the sequoia grove at the Tilden Botanic Gardens, their ceremony was quiet, intimate and special. Kirsten and Tim seemed to be glowing both inside and out as I photographed them saying their vows.

Kirsten hired an all-star Berkeley cast of vendors too! I was more than thrilled when Kirsten told me she was going to work with Svenja of Chestnut and Vine on the flowers. I love Svenja's sophisticated, artistic and quirky style and it fit right in with Kirsten and Tim's day. Standard Fare Berkeley catered the yummy food and of course the wine was all BROC Cellars - Kirsten and Tim's favorite local winery and the location of the fun and simple celebration reception. With wine and food in the tasting room and games galore outside, adults and kids alike had a great time celebrating Kirsten and Tim. So did I and couldn't be more thrilled for this couple whom I grown to love to so much. They are so perfect for each other in so many ways. Plus they look pretty darned great in front of the lens too!

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Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch Wedding - Megan and Oli!

It's rare that one of my favorite parts of the day is taking the getting ready photos. I like it, but I'm always thrilled to get to the venue to start photographing the big event! BUT, Megan and Oli got ready on a very special family property about thirty minutes from the Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch which is where the wedding and reception were to take place. When I drove onto this remote property up near Geyserville, I instantly fell and love and knew why it was such a special place! A family property shared by both architects AND stylists, it was simple and lovely and decked out for the wedding festivities! I especially loved the wedding night tent set up for the newlyweds on a remote part of the property.

Megan wore a BHLDN ready-to-wear dress for all the pre-shooting on this rural property and I loved being shown around to the couple's favorite spots for our photo session with California Oaks, vineyards and gorgeous views of both the Napa and Sonoma Valleys as backdrops! How lucky am I that I get glimpses into these special places!

Then off we went to the Farmstead at Long Meadow Ranch and I was excited to start photographing the loveliness of THAT property and the combined creativity of our bride and her stylist Stepmom, Margaret Turnbull. All was seamlessly woven together by our fabulous wedding planners from ROQUE Events. Megan stunned all when she walked out in her Delphine Manivet Hyppolite gown and the flowers by Mae Flowers were especially fitting creating a feel of freshly picked wildflowers. I absolutely loved the guest favors of loose leaf organic tea in glass tubes. Megan and Oli had fun incorporating their combined heritages too. I loved all the Austrian touches representing our couple's home country and Oli's birth country.

Friends and family and a big party were the goal and they succeeded! The evening was warm and clear and the couple's bluegrass band was even made up of friends and all gathered when Megan and Oli shared their first s'more at the "campfire". What a stunning wedding and a stunning couple. I was honored to photograph this incredible day!

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The Flood Mansion - Emily and Collin!

It's been a while since I photographed a wedding at The Flood Mansion in San Francisco. Yowsa - it's still one of my favorite locations in the entire bay area and it was the perfect sophisticated and elegant venue for a sophisticated and elegant couple.

After a fairy tale first look at the Lyon Steps, a trolley dropped off the bridal party and immediate family for a super fun photo session. Nobody seemed to mind too much that I made everyone traipse up and down the many flights of stairs because the trolley couldn't drop us off JUST where I wanted to photograph everyone. Many thanks to everyone for doing that for the picky photographer! It DID provide some really fun shots of our bride getting her workout in for the day!

Emily and Collin said their vows in the courtyard at Flood mansion flanked by a couple of gorgeous floral arrangements by Lynda Quiros of Elle Que Designs . Oh it was so elegant and glamorous and Emily looked like Grace Kelly come back to life in her incredible gown by Jinza Bridal. The hair and makeup team of Amy Hsueh and Laura Yamasaki, couldn't have done a better job with Emily's elegant look and I had a glorious time photographing this stunning bride. Collin was incredibly dapper too in his Hugo Boss tux and Tom Ford Bow Tie. I loved some of the pre-ceremony shots I got while he and his groomsmen waited for the ceremony to start.

As if all of that wasn't enough gorgeousness, the party started and the dining room looked so stunning! Caroline Bottoms made sure everything looked perfect. Global Gourmet provided not only that gorgeous bridal party tablecloth but also this gorgeous and delicious food. All set within the elegant rooms of the Flood Mansion with views of the bay and the Golden Gate Bridge, how could this NOT be one of my favorite locations in the bay area! I always feel honored when I photograph a wedding in this gorgeous space.

Thank you, Emily and Collin and congratulations!

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Event Coordinator: Caroline Bottoms

Venue: Flood Mansion

Floral Designer: Lynda Quiros of Elle Que Designs

Caterer: Global Gourmet Catering

Cake: Susie Cakes

Hair Stylist: Amy Hsueh

Make-up Artist: Laura Yamasaki

Lighting: Got Light

Dress: Jinza Bridal

Jewelry: Helene Lucille

Headlands Center for the Arts - Kristen and Brian!

It's always an honor when someone in the industry asks me to photograph their wedding and Kristen was no exception! As the Marketing Director for Got Light, she knows her stuff about gorgeous weddings and the wedding industry! Also, an extremely creative knitter, she has her own YouTube channel called "Studio Knit". Check it out! A woman of many talents and boundless energy, Kristen took on her wedding like she seems to take on everything - with a passion and talent rarely seen, Kristen made this the DIY wedding of all time!

Creating 1,000 paper cranes as a backdrop for their ceremony was just a start for Kristen! I also loved the paper butterflies she added to the lanterns. She added buttons down her back from her mother’s 1967 wedding dress, symbolizing that her mother “had her back” during the wedding. For her adorable flowergirl Delilah, Kristen created a pomander wand with hand dyed French silk ribbons and daisies in her favorite color – purple! With her exquisite eye for design and color, she put her graphic arts and paper folding skills to work. She designed all the wedding collateral, creating the whimsical cohesive branding of their wedding, even adding hand made paper cranes to the wedding invitations!

Headlands Center for the Arts is one of my fave bay area venues and their official caterer, Katie Powers of Katie Powers Catering knocked the socks off - as always - with the food and I was also thrilled when I arrived and saw my friend Erica of Erica Rose Designs was doing the flowers. Add in the talented Got Light team and Jasmine Rae Bakery, and you truly have an all-star team!

Kristen and Brian's union was over 25 years in the making, so when they tied the knot, I'm not sure there was a dry eye in the house - especially when two of the members of Brian's former band Veil of Ashes played a love song from their band days during the ceremony. I was crying behind the lens! These two know how to have fun together, love beautiful things and great music and it all came together on their wedding day. Congrats to Kristen and Brian!!!

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