Dia de los Muertos Inspired Wedding: Nayeli + Bradford

Day of the Dead Wedding

You guys might remember Nayeli + Bradford from their super gorgeous engagement session we featured last summer on GWS. Their e-session alone proves how much amazing style they have as individuals and as a couple – and once Clayton Austin (who shot both their engagement photos + wedding) let us know he was sending photos of their big day our way, well, we could hardly wait to see what it entailed!

Nayeli  says, We were inspired by the Mexican traditional holiday of Dia de los Muertos because we thought it was a beautiful way to incorporate our loved ones that have passed and honor Brad’s mom specifically. We are also firm believers that love is eternal and follows through to the Afterlife, so it was a beautiful way to celebrate love in all aspects of life, even in death. We designed everything ourselves, so so much of who we are went into every little detail.

Get ready for some serious beauty + creativity…

Day of the Dead Invitations

Clayton Austin + Nayeli collaborated on the invite suite and Clayton helped her + Brad pull together other details, like the vibrant, crepe florals + gorgeous head table design.

Day of the Dead Wedding

rings

dress

Day of the Dead Bride

Day of the Dead Bride

bell sleeved dress

We are beyond in love with Nayeli’s amazing + colorful wedding dress!

grooms suit

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Although I didn’t have a wedding planner, I did have an amazing family that contributed to the success of what our day was, more then I could of originally imagined as the circumstances progressed. What started out as a Do It Yourself turned into a Do It With Family. This was a wedding with an $8,000 budget, we wanted to keep things simple, unique, and not be elaborately wasteful like weddings can tend to be. Our cantina tables were bought at a junk store and resold after the ceremony, the corn husk flowers were found in San Antonio Market, and signs were made from recycled wood. We used wine barrels to create the bar, galvanized metal tins to create the drink stations, and the Coca-Cola glasses (our Thank you gift) were found at a dollar store!

Day of the Dead Wedding

flower girls

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Our Favorite Memory From The Wedding

After reciting our written vows, our 13 month old son walked down the aisle, peeked around the officiant and made his way into our arms to finish off the ceremony. We bound our hands with a sash made from Brad's mothers wedding dress to signify our unity and Cosmo's hand was included in that sacred moment. It was a very candid and really spoke to what made our day so meaningful. We celebrated us, the life we created, and the future we’ll share together.

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

We were all about finding deals, repurposing, and wanting things to feel authentic to our down-home personality and style. My two sisters, mother, and baby in tow, flew to Sayulita, Mexico for my bachelorette party/wedding shopping spree. We brought back 3 suitcases of amazing art, textiles, and figurines to really give it that flavor, color and texture we wanted to portray. I bought pom-poms from a merchant in Mexico and made our alter, and found a sacred heart mirror to reflect the love back into the crowd. We specifically wanted the celebration to include kids, so we hired a face painter, bought a couple of pinatas, and they ran around, laughed, and played into the night.

Day of the Dead bridesmaidsWedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

guest book

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

paper flower centerpiece

Shop this amazing + bright wedding scene in our handpicked guide below!

papel picado

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Our wedding turned out amazing simply because of the Love we share and with the community we have to support us. We had the wedding at my parents ranchette that we affectionately call “El Ranchito”, which was great because we saved money on a venue in exchange for a place we already had so many memories with. The only downside would be weather which didn’t deter us because in Texas, the suns out even at night. Our wedding day had to be rescheduled TWICE in 9 days!! The original day was on October 24th but when the first major storm of the season threatened to flood the area we had to reschedule for the safety for our guests, so we moved it to the following Halloween Saturday. The Thursday before the wedding, 3 inches of rain was predicted, so we laughed it off. Three inches turned into a record 300 year flood and El Ranchito looked like a lake.

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

With so much preparation, one wedding day already cancelled, we didn’t know what to do. We called all our guests and told them we would move it to Sunday, we were prepared to just get married in the destruction. Luckily our caters were very understanding as it flooded the entire county, and after seeing pictures offered to lend a hand in any way they could. We spent Halloween cleaning up what we could and reminding one another that its only about our love and sharing it with those close to us, not matter what it ended up like. That Sunday, November 1st, 2015 the sun came out and shined down on a magical day for us. My two sisters and mother stepped in to deal with the catering, as guests were arriving they helped pitch in where they could. They understood what we just went through and there was something beautifully raw and human that came from the destruction, people lent a hand, and contributed where they could.

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

Day of the Dead Wedding

embroidered bell sleeve dress

It was more beautiful then I could of imagined because it became a wedding that the community had a hand in, already supporting us, all in the name of love. The irony of it all is that the wedding day actually fell on the Day of the Dead, in true cosmic alignment with our wishes. It was perfection in all its flaws. 

embroidered bell sleeve dress

day of the dead cake

Our Advice To Those Planning Now

Stay flexible. Things aren't going to be exactly as you planned and you really have to just focus on the LOVE. Its a day to celebrate with all those important, if it floods (in our case), the love is still there. Its so much more important to focus on the feeling that you want to emanate then focusing on the perfection of what you thought the day would be like.

photography + florals: Clayton Austin // venue: Bride’s Parents, El Ranchito in Texas // event design + planning: Bride // bridesmaid dresses: Nativa // hair + makeup: Bride // groom’s suit: Noose and Monkey // videography: My Creative Drug // paper goods: Clayton Austin and Bride // catering: Fresas Chicken // cake: Crema Bakery & Cafe // rentals: Whim Event Rentals // officiant: C.K. Chin // music: Spotify Playlists

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