Modern San Diego Museum Wedding: Jill + Mike

chalkboard wall

Jill + Mike tied the knot at The New Children’s Museum in San Diego – a gorgeous, modern space with great architectural installations + incredible light. Working off the clean-lined setting of their venue, they kept the environment festive with bold and graphic details and a fun color palette of pink, navy and gold.  And since the museum just so happens to have huge chalkboards everywhere, Jill + Mike were inspired to incorporate them into their wedding design with beautiful signage that was full of both whimsy + history; like a 1920’s-styled “Libations” sign over the bar and a giant family tree welcoming guests to the ceremony! Love it! :)

From the bride, Some of the things that bring Mike and I together are our love of great design, bright colors and happy things. And what could be more happy-making than a children’s museum? And of course, with my theatre background, I wanted to set a stage for the ultimate production! 

Big thanks to Jenika + Chadwick of Studio Castillero for sharing these lovely images with us today + congrats to the happy newlyweds on a beautiful day!

gold glitter envelope

After finding the perfect chalkboard-inspired invitation on Minted, we got envelopes from PaperSource and jazzed them up with liners. Mike hand-lined all our envelopes with glittery gold paper – our house was FILLED with glitter for weeks. Our black cat looked a little more festive for some time! ;)

gold sparkle shoes

pink bouquets


first look

first look

bride and groom

bride and groom

bride and groom

wedding party

Such pretty, bright bouquets!



bride and groom


wedding party

pink bouquet bride

chalkboard chart

museum wedding

And the sweet flower girl carried a giant paper bloom crafted by Lazulie + Blithe Events – a super fun touch that really encompassed the whimsical vibe of the day!

giant paper flower

museum wedding

museum wedding

museum wedding

museum wedding

How awesome is this for a ceremony backdrop?!

museum wedding

museum reception

chalkboard seating chart

The reception tables featured gold glitter table runners topped with ombre coral centerpieces by Floral FX. Seriously, such a pretty look!

gold table runners

gold chairs

pink centerpieces

gold napkins

Jill: It's hard to pick just one. I loved dancing with my dad - that was the moment where everything felt...real. I was never one to dream of my wedding, but the one thing I always knew was that my dad and I would dance to "Moon River" from Breakfast at Tiffany's. And we did. He's my "huckleberry friend" forever. The other amazing moment was on the dance floor. Don't Stop Believin' by Journey started, and Mike and I were dancing in the middle of the floor, and all of the sudden, all our friends were holding hands and dancing around us in a circle. As a theatre geek, I have to say - I love a choreographed number. Especially with the best leading man.

Mike: It was just before the introduction of the bridal party, in the waning moments of the cocktail hour. After what seemed like hundreds of handshakes, thousands of photos, and countless details materializing all at once, I found myself alone with my wife for the first time. Wanting a perfect performance of our first dance together, we just had to have one last five minute rehearsal. After weeks of squeezing in hurried and often stressful dance lessons, this was it. We snuck off to a quiet corridor and began. Despite our nervousness, everything came together in that precise moment, and I felt completely at ease as I took Jill’s hands in mine and danced. I barely had to think of the steps, I just twirled my glowing wife round and round in her beautiful white dress and enjoyed watching her burst with happiness. Was the dance perfect? Probably not. But you certainly couldn’t convince us of that. The moment was perfect. We were happy and married, and all the details, all the concerns, all the worries of life quieted down and left us alone. In just a few short minutes, we would be back in the center of the crowd with all eyes watching, anxiously waiting to see our first dance together as husband and wife. Little did they know that we already did just that.


museum reception

wedding cake

Don’t get too bogged down by an idea you had early in the process. At first, I was intent on bringing in another love of ours – books. But once we picked the ultra-modern venue, some of my initial ideas just didn’t make sense. So I let it go. We ended up incorporating the books as holders for our vows – much better than a wadded up piece of paper! I held my late aunt’s copy of “Sonnets from the Portuguese”; Mike held “French Wit & Wisdom” – perfect, as we were engaged in Paris.

Also, spend money on your photographers. The day goes SO fast, and you are so exhausted at the end. The second best day, after the actual wedding day, is the day you get your pictures. Jenika and Chadwick nailed the spirit of the day. And now we have that forever captured.

photography: Jenika & Chadwick Gantes of Studio Castillero // planning + design: Bride (Design) & Paige Jensen of Turquoise Events (Month-of Planner) // venue: The New Children’s Museum, San Diego, California // florals: Patricia Navarro of Floral FX // makeup: Brides by Helena // hair: Rachel Clancy of House of Hair // cake: Friend of the Bride, Adalyn Wilson // catering: Authentic Flavors // officiant: Friend of the Bride, Elizabeth Graham, Bride’s Father, The Honorable James A. McIntyre // ceremony musician: The Michael Armstrong Quartet (students from the Brides’s high school, The Bishop’s School) // dj/band: Red at Party People San Diego // wedding dress: Here Comes the Bride // veil: Vocabulary Boutique // wedding rings: Harold Stevens Jewelers // shoes: Sam Edelman from Nordstrom // bridesmaid’s dresses: Donna Morgan // groom’s + groomsmen’s suits: A Better Deal Tux // stationery: Minted // transportation: Haynes Antique Cars // flower girl’s giant flower: Lazulie + Blithe Events 

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  1. What a beautiful wedding. I’m looking for some inspiration as I start to think about my own wedding these days – and I think this blog definitely is the place to be.

    I started a blog about sapphire engagement rings, because I find the variety fascinating and I want to know more about that topic before choosing the one ring for my proposal.

    Having found your blog helps me a lot to set all the single information into the bigger picture!

    Best regards,

  2. Gorgeous bouquets! They really pop!

  3. Heidi Metcalfe Lewis on:

    What a gorgeous wedding, and such a stunning bride! I LOVE THAT DRESS and everything about this whimsical, modern wedding.

  4. Gosh, it’s all gorgeous. I’m so into this wedding – the venue, the colour scheme, all the little details. She is such a beautiful bride!

  5. Beautiful! Love the chalkboard invites and seating chart. Also love the pops of pink!

  6. Ahh, love this! How cool is the museum as a perfect backdrop.

  7. Beautiful timeless pictures. They look like they were shot on film not digital.

  8. I absolutely love this wedding, from the gorgeous bride who looks stunning in her gown, to the pops of pink and chalkboard backdrop. I love seeing a curvy bride portrayed in such a glamourous and amazing way! Kudos for featuring.

  9. Big fan of the invitations. I love that the blue was shaded and looked authentically antique!

  10. SO PRETTY! Hard to see in the pics but all the bridesmaids are wearing Galaxy Necklaces. So honored, I hope they loved them.

  11. Great work! The pictures are very very beautiful, especially the first one…

  12. So beautiful! Loving everything about this wedding :) Perfect amount of gold and brights

  13. So very arty and sophisticated! Adore the navy

  14. Very beautiful wedding. Love weddings in museums adds punches of color that you can only get with great art.


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