They were midway between an old life in California and a new life in Australia, so Jenny + Lee thought their marriage should follow suit! The couple landed on a destination wedding on the island of Kauai. The perfect place in between, a Hawaiian wedding offered a dreamy tropical setting for a boho-chic wedding with surfing on the side. Moana Events helped bring the vision to life at the beautiful Na ‘Āina Kai Botanical Gardens! Here’s more from Jenny on the inspiration behind the day:
We wanted to throw an epic wedding reception that felt fun, relaxed and non-traditional. Lee and I dislike many formalities of traditional weddings so we tried to stay true to ourselves by only incorporating elements that really mattered to us like great food, fun chats, vibrant music, and a pumping dance floor. In doing so, we were able to throw a super fun wedding that everyone came out saying was the best wedding they’d ever been to.
Lilly Red Creative was on board to capture all the stunning details from the tropical day!
How cute is she? One of Jenny’s favorite memories has something to do with her adorable niece…scroll on to see!
The Tropical Forest Ceremony
Moana Events came up with the idea of a round ceremony in the middle of the trees which J + L adored — a symbol of being surrounded by their personal inner tribe.
Walking down the aisle and seeing the look on my husband's face. I’ve never seen that look before and it was one I’ll remember for a lifetime. He also kept grabbing my hands throughout the ceremony because he was nervous, which was really sweet.
At the end of our reception, my husband and I did the dirty dancing lift (the help of our friends to hoist me up) which was so fun and totally unplanned and unexpected.
Also, my father got choked up when we started to walk down the aisle and he never cries so it was really special.
Finally, when my adorable 2-year-old niece yelled out 'NOOOO!' when the ceremony first started. Everyone started cracking up which helped to take the edge off. Whether she didn't want the wedding to move forward or she was just upset about her mother's snack choice, is hard to say.
Newlyweds in Kauai!
All those stunning tropical florals are the work of Mei Day. Proteas and palms are forever our favorites!
Jenny was every bit the breezy beauty with natural hair + makeup by Mia Moriguchi.
The Surfer Chic Reception
Lee’s love of surf and Jenny’s love for vintage created a fun + unique theme for the reception! The VW photo bus certainly fit the bill.
Loving this earthy, boho design! Those gorgeous rattan chairs are Kawaii Designs Hawaii are total stunners!
J + L opted for heavy passed canapés and action stations over a sit-down meal. Guests mixed + mingled while enjoying a few of the couple’s favorite things: charcuterie, pig on a spit, poké bowls, and Sriracha fried chicken bites!
Stay true to yourself and don't do anything that makes you uncomfortable just because you think you're meant to (e.g., first dance, mother of the groom and groom dance, speeches, etc.). There are no official rules that you need to follow; it's your day!
Splurge on the things that matter to you the most like a great photographer and videographer who share your style and vision or a fun DJ/band. No one will notice if you don't include a wedding program, thank-you gifts or branded napkins.
Invite people who have supported you and your fiancé in the past and who will be there in your future. This is your wedding and not meant to be another fun house party where everyone is invited. It's okay to be exclusive.
Definitely utilize a wedding website, especially if you are having a destination wedding. Everyone we know referenced it throughout the week away and it was the best way to push new information out to everyone.
And be sure to check out their beautiful film by Bottlebrush Films
So beautiful! All our congrats to Jenny + Lee!
photography: Lilly Red Creative // venue name: Na ‘Aina Kai Botanical Gardens, Kilauea, Kauai, Hawaii // event design: Moana Events // planning: Moana Events // florals: Mei Day // wedding dress: Rue De Seine // bride's shoes: See by Chloe // bride's ring: Sarah Malim // hair stylist: Mia Moriguchi // makeup artist: Mia Moriguchi // groom attire: Knot Standard // groom's shoes: Cano // videography: Bottlebrush Films // paper goods: Kokomo Creative // catering: Contemporary Flavors Catering // furniture rentals: Kawaii Designs Hawaii // linen rentals: La Tavola Fine Linen // music: Blaze Entertainment Hawaii // lighting: Atmosphere Rentals Kauai