Such a pretty, intimate wedding to end the week – and at one of my favorite venues – the Headlands Center for the Arts in Sausalito, California. Gabrielle + Paul wanted to make sure their wedding was a complete extension of who they are – from the inherently rustic + unique quality of the venue, to the seasonal market-fresh food and the just-picked look of the flowers, to the cake they asked one of their favorite neighborhood restaurants to make for them, they made sure each decision was one that could be a direct reflection of what they surround themselves with in their daily lives. They also incorporated little pieces they found at flea markets – such as old windows that they refurbished to display escort cards and an old file-o-fact that they used to house guestbook notes and cards. So sweet! Big thanks to The Weaver House for the photos and congrats to Gabrielle + Paul!
Our ceremony actually turned out to be incredibly sentimental and memorable for the both of us. In truth, all we knew initially about our ceremony was that we wanted to make sure it wasn't too lengthy, and we planned on writing our own vows. Two things made it more than memorable though, one being our wonderful officiant. It turned out our mothers had a midwife in common—she delivered us both, and we couldn't pass up on the chance to ask her to be a part of our wedding day, and include such a wonderful coincidence in our celebration. She made us feel at ease, and her words seemed to bring our family and friends closer together. The other moment that made our ceremony so special was hearing each other's vows for the first time. It made for such a pure, heartfelt moment, and even though we were both a little nervous, making our promises in our own words made the moment that much sweeter.
One of the first things we did early on while planning was to sit down and make a list of our own non-negotiables—things that were important to us individually. We compared, found the ones we had in common, and discussed the ones we felt differently about. This helped keep us on the same page, and put to rest a lot of potential conflict throughout the planning stages.
I think this has been said a million times over to many a bride, but it took me umpteen frustrating moments to learn my lesson: don't sweat the small stuff, worry only about the things you can actually control (and no, you can't control everything). While I certainly tried to keep every aspect of our wedding under my thumb, in the end it didn't matter, and all I did was drive myself (and my now husband) absolutely crazy. I mentioned that I did indeed learn my lesson: I got horribly sick days leading up to my wedding, and I'm convinced it's because I packed on the stress! What saved me on the actual day? Probably huge amounts of adrenaline, and our amazing day-of coordinator. I only wish we'd decided to enlist her help much earlier on.
The other essential decision we made was in regards to our wedding pictures. I think it's important to find a photographer with an aesthetic that makes your heart jump. These photos will (mostly) be all that remains of your wedding day, so put just as much thought and effort into picking out your photographer as you do picking out your dress! It will be more than worth it.
photography: Kelty and Hannah of The Weaver House // venue name: Headlands Center for the Arts, Sausalito, California // wedding dress: Carolina Herrera // bride's shoes: Something Bleu // groom attire: Couture European Men's Clothing Boutique // paper goods: Designed by a friend, printed by Dependable Letterpress // catering: Katie Powers Catering // cake: Contigo // music: Quinn DeVeaux and the Blue Beat Review // day of coordinator: Rebecca Pfiffner of Be Hitched // floral design: Anna Hoffmann of Loop Event Arts