A Burlap Inspired Destination Wedding in Florida

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Brandon and Jennifer hosted their destination wedding in the beautiful St. Augustine, FL with friends and family by their sides to share in the big “I do’s!”  We asked Jennifer how they selected this special location.  “Brandon and I met in St. Augustine while attending the University of St. Augustine for Health Sciences.  One of our very first dates was to a classmate’s wedding on the rooftop of the White Room and I knew the moment I stepped out onto that rooftop that I wanted to be married there.  Little did I know, that I would get married there to that man I barely knew.  Having our wedding on the rooftop of the white room really was a dream come true for both of us.”  

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We planned the entire wedding in six months, and we somehow managed to do it all from Texas.  We have been living in Austin, TX for over two years now and it was definitely a challenge to plan wedding from so far in such a short amount of time so we had to put trust in our friends still living in town to help us make so many important decisions.   My maid of honor completed our wedding cake testing and an usher had to be the witness to sign the contract for the white room because we were unable to be there.  Even with the challenge of distance, our vendors were so amazing that the entire process went without a hiccup.”

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“One of my favorite photos of my bouquet displays a bluebird pin that was given to me by my mother in law to represent my something blue.  It was given to her by her mother in law on her wedding day, and it holds such a special place in my heart.”  

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The flower girl of course didn’t steal the show but we can’t help but fall in love with this little one!

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The bridesmaids’ neutral palette went perfectly with the rustic design this duo had in mind.

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We asked Jennifer what the inspiration for the rustic wedding décor was.  I am originally from a very small town in southern Mississippi and a true southern girl at heart, so the rustic theme has always appealed to me, however I wanted to find the right balance of classic meets rustic to accentuate our beautiful venue.  The decorating began with mason jars and burlap and the touches of lace and mercury glass were added to make it unique for us.  I also have always loved soft neutrals and that’s usually all you’ll find in my wardrobe so I couldn’t have felt more like myself on our perfect day.”

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“Our favorite element from the wedding was the sweet treats bar.  We wanted it to be bright and fun but simple, and the pop of color in the room was such a great contrast to the otherwise neutral palette.  Brandon proposed at the end of the 5K color run in New Orleans, LA and we were both covered head to toe in bright paint and he had a photographer to capture the moment and it was so special to us and we wanted a way to incorporate it into our big day, so from the photos came the inspiration for the candy bar.”

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And in addition to the sweets bar was this ‘spooned’ cake complete with monogram cake topper!

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And for the grand finale?!  Sparklers for their sendoff!

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Pure Sugar Studios

Wedding Vendors: Ceremony + Reception Location: The White RoomDesign: The Conservatorie Floral Event and DesignEntertainment: McGhee Entertainment, Hair and Makeup: Amanda Hopcraft, Wedding Dress: Allure Bridal sculptured A-line ivory lace, Wedding Cake: Publix Bakery

 

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Ritz Carlton, Kapalua, Maui Engagement Party

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Emma and Jaan planned a destination wedding in Maui, but things don’t always go according to plan.  Jaan is from Belgium and they had a bit of unexpected visa trouble before the intended “I do’s.”  But the plans had been made, the flights booked and guests excited to attend the big day so instead, the couple turned their would-be wedding into a fabulous destination engagement party!  With just a few good friends and family members in attendance, the pair celebrated their upcoming wedding with a dinner overlooking the ocean at the Kapalua Bay Cliff House.

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We asked Emma about their experience and what it was like having an engagement party instead of the wedding they had expected.  “I thought we were going to feel really disappointed on the day of, but it was so relaxing and the party was so much fun we couldn’t be sad about not getting married that day.”

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Luckily, these love birds didn’t have to wait much long to actually tie the knot.  “We got married a week after my husband’s visa came through. In other words, we had a week to plan a wedding and decided to piggy back on a 3rd cousin’s wedding (she was okay with it!)”

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We often ask couples for advice for you and here’s what this pair had to say.  “Don’t get too wrapped up in planning. We planned for months only to have to cancel our wedding. But in the end, we were able to plan our actual wedding in a week and it turned out just as ideal as we’d imagined.” 

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“In the end I was happy we didn’t get married in Hawaii. There were so many competing weddings happening on the beach we had planned to get married on, I’m glad things turned out the way they did. But of course, everything else about Hawaii was beautiful and amazing.” 

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One of their favorite moments from the festivities?  “Trying to light lanterns on a very windy night and then having the hotel sprinklers go on and getting totally soaked.”  Sometimes the unexpected and unplanned are the best of memories from the big day!

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Audra Wrisley Photography + Design 

Wedding Vendors: Location: Ritz Carlton, Kapalua Bay, Dinner Venue:  Kapalua Bay Cliff House Wedding Cake: Maui Cake Store, Bride’s Dress: Urban Outfitters

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Saint Augustine, Florida Destination I Do

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We’re obsessed with Mike and Allison’s wedding color palette, among other things!  This sweet couple selected Florida for their destination wedding and we chatted with their wedding planner, Valerie Pritt from Fleur de Lis Event Consulting who shared with us some insights into their special day.  “It was a non-traditional wedding and will definitely go down in the book as one of my favorites.  Allison and Mike originate from Pennsylvania but chose to have an intimate celebration with close friends and family in Florida. To accommodate all their guests they reserved the Bayfront Marin House; the hotel was also where the reception was held- a perfect place for this fun loving bunch.” 

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“The wedding color palette was an absolute favorite of mine- purple, silver and green and Ashley Steeby Photography did a wonderful job of capturing everything!” 

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Such a beautiful way to dress a bridal party – all in the color palette but each unique in cut, pattern and hue!

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“August is an unpredictable month and rain was in the forecast for that day.  However, by the time the ceremony started everything was perfect, including the weather. The ceremony and cocktail hour was held at the Llambias House, which was only a few streets over from the Marin House.  It was a wonderful ceremony with unforgettable vows and joyful tears.” 

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“After the ceremony, guests enjoyed a  few glasses of champagne and some light appetizers while the family and couple took pictures.  The bride and groom mixed it up a little by having their 1st dance at the ceremony site as well as the Matron of Honor and Best Man toasts. Afterwards everyone walked back over to the Marin House to enjoy the rest of the festivities.”  

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“As I told you earlier, it was a non-traditional wedding with no cake cutting, bouquet/garter toss or a special exit. But this did not change the spirit of the event, in fact it gave more time for dancing and some more unforgettable and funny toasts.”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Ashley Steeby Photography

Wedding Professionals:  Ceremony Venue: Llambias House, Reception Venue: Bayfront Marin House, Wedding Planner: Fleur de Lis Event Consulting, Officiant: Rev. David Shokes, Caterer: D’Vine Cuisine, Florist: Conservatoire, Bakery: Publix, DJ: Unique DJ Entertainment, Hair: Michelle Schaeffer, Makeup: Amanda Hopcraft

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A Mile High Honeymoon in Denver

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“Many newlyweds consider heading to the beaches of Cabo San Lucas or the islands off the coast do Greece to escape from the world and enjoy time as husband and wife. However, millennials, who are more connected than ever are considering heading to the city to romance and wine and dine as husband and wife.”  And where is that?  Well, we asked expert wedding planners, Sarah and Lindsay at Pink Paisley Events and they gave us the inside scoop on honeymooning domestically – in Denver!  The duo is joining us today to give you ideas on where to stay and what to do when you hit the Mile High City for your honeymoon!

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Where to stay: Hotel Teatro

 “Built in 1911, Hotel Teatro’s walls are embedded with the history of this city. The first location of the Evans Mansion, home to Colorado’s second territorial governor, that was originally built as the Denver Tramway Building. Due to its close proximity to the performing arts complex, Hotel Teatro, which is theatre in Italian, has combined modern structure with Renaissance era brick and terra cotta.

 Home to Denver’s best restaurant according to the Denver post, restaurant Kevin Taylor with ensure you’re stay at Hotel Teatro is nothing short of perfect.”

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What To Do: Day One: Mile High Sports

 “Lower Downtown or LoDo as the natives call it, is a district of refurbished warehouses that house the city’s most popular bars, restaurants and nightclubs. With Coors Field sitting center stage, your day is sure to be a home run.

 Start off with breakfast at Snooze A.M. Eatery. This local hipster hotspot is filled with young adults lining the booth with famous Snooze Bloody Mary’s and their famous “Brewmosa.” Order a stack of pineapple upside pancakes and sit back an enjoy breakfast as husband and wife.

 Next head off on foot for a historic walking tour of LoDo to explore the sites of this old warehouse district. Self guided tours are available allowing you to go at your pace and stop anytime for drink or snack along the way.

 To quench your thirst, head to The View House right across the street from Coors Field for a game day beer and pretzel. With 360 degree views of Denver and the Rocky Mountains, View House boats the best rooftop patio in the city! After, head right across the street to Coors Field to catch the Colorado Rockies in action!

 Colorado is known as the “Napa of Microbrews” so following the game head down to the Sand Lot, where the famous Blue Moon was invented for a fresh brew and bite after the Rockies game.”

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 Day Two: Adventure in the City

 “Even though Denver is about an hour from the mountains there are plenty of things to do outdoors that will make you feel like your right in the middle of the Rocky Mountains. Using your smart phone, locate the nearest B-cycle station, Denver bicycle sharing programs that lets you rent bikes and ride all around the city.

 Ride down to REI‘s flagship store and wander the 18,000 square foot store where you can test your rock climbing skills on the indoor rock wall, pedal your way through the indoor mountain biking track and practice your kayaking skills on the Platte River, right outside the store. This store will give you the feeling that you’re in the mountains without ever having to leave the city.

 To ensure your outdoor day in the city is authentic as possible head over to the Buffalo Exchange, home to the city’s first liquor license and where people as famous as Buffalo Bill and Wyatt Earp have sat the buffalo exchange will give you the best meat that Colorado has to offer. If you’re extra brave, try the Rocky Mountain Oysters. Don’t ask, just try!”

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 Day Three: Luxury in the city

“After your whirlwind tour of this great city, it’s time to relax together as husband and wife and wrap up your honeymoon on with a great meal and there is no better place to do that than The Ritz Carlton. Their world-class spa and five star dining are sure to be the cherry on top this Mile High Honeymoon. Schedule a couple massage at the spa that overlooks the Rocky Mountains. After that head right downstairs to Elway’s, a famous steakhouse named after Denver Bronco and NFL great John Elway.”

You’ll have plenty of down time and plenty to do during a Mile High honeymoon!  A BIG thanks to Sarah and Lindsay from Pink Paisley Events in Colorado for sharing their insights to a fantastic trip to Denver.  Check back soon to see some of their fabulous real wedding work!

All Photos Courtesy of Pink Paisley Events.

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An Off the Strip Las Vegas Wedding

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Sarah and Clayton said I do outside of Las Vegas for their destination wedding celebration.  We asked Sarah to share the details of their big day and how they came to be.  Clayton and I stumbled upon the Springs Preserve by accident!   We thought we made an appointment to see a ranch on the outskirts of Las Vegas and I was cursing the GPS for taking us to this unknown location!  As soon as we drove in, we knew we had found a hidden gem!  We were looking for an outdoor venue to support our country theme, and the Springs Preserve was full of beautiful gardens and country style décor embedded throughout the property.  It was the first and last venue we looked at.”

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“My husband was born in North Carolina making him a Tarheel fan for life!  This made it a must to incorporate baby blue into as many details as we could! I also knew it would earn me some bonus point with my mother-in-law because she is a diehard fan as well!”

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“The “first look” moment that Chelsea Nicole Photography created for Clayton and I was unforgettable!  I was lead down a dirt path by Chelsea and her assistant, both holding parts of my wedding dress above their heads!  My childhood best friend had asked me if she could sneak down with us and spy on the first look.  So through the long walk, flying fabric, and my anxious belly, I could see her popping from tree to tree like a Mission Impossible agent! When it finally came to the moment Clayton could turn around, his reaction made it all worth it!  For a few seconds, he was frozen in his tracks and didn’t know what to do!  When he finally approached me, it was the first time in our 6 year relationship, I saw his eyes water.  The moment was so intimate, like the world was swirling around us, but all we could see was each other.”

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“The country inspiration came from not only our love of country music and my husband’s upbringing, but from the fond memory of our first date camping and two-stepping under the stars to our favorite Brad Paisley CD.”

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“I will also never forget being lifted in the chair for the traditional Jewish dance of the Horah.  Having fallen out of the chair at my bat-mitzvah, I was not keen on trying it again!  My husband recruited his 3 strongest friends, who actually put together a plan of attack to ensure I was comfortable!  When the moment came, our good friend Louie got his finger stuck in the chair after the lift and had to stay that way, screaming in pain, until it was time to put me down!  He said he knew if he let go and something happened to me, he would never survive!  His pain was all worth it to be able to throw my arms in the air with my new husband and celebrate our marriage!”

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“My advice for future destination couples is to know who you are working with!  Take the time to travel to your destination location and meet everyone you will be working with, so you feel more comfortable and trusting when the day comes.  If it is at all possible to have local vendors travel with you, you will have fewer surprises!”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer:  Chelsea Nicole Photography

Wedding Vendors: Planning, Design + Floral Designer: DM Events, Event Venue: Las Vegas Springs Preserve, Day of Event Planner: Love & Lilikoi Event Planning, Officiant:Rabbi Shai, Catering: Culinary Arts Institute, Hair and Makeup: Noel Kanaley, Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero, Cake: Layers Bakery

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A Nautical Destination I Do in Michigan

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Lisa and Eric had a domestic destination wedding in Michigan, traveling from Texas to a spectacular site that was sight unseen for this pair until their wedding day!  We asked the bride, Lisa, how they selected a location they’d never been to!  “We selected our location for 2 reasons: The pictures looked beautiful online and when I called to inquire more about the facility the lady on the phone was friendly and helpful. Also, the location was a destination for us, coming from Texas, and yet it was still convenient for our relatives in Michigan and Canada.”

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The couple infused lots of color into their big day and even a few fun nautical details!

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Since this bride and groom had never been to the venue until the wedding day, that first moment was extra special for them.  “One of my favorite moments on our wedding day was when I first got to Castle Farms and walked through the Knight’s Courtyard/Castle. It was the very first time I had set foot at the venue and I was totally overwhelmed by how gorgeous the reception hall was and how put together everything already was. Our catering, flowers, and cake were there waiting and the only thing I had to stress out about was getting myself ready… it was great!”

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We went with a nautical theme because we love that surrounding our venue are lakes and lighthouses. Coming from Texas where lots of weddings were rustic and vintage inspired this just seemed like the Michigan thing to do and it was fun!”

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 My advice would be find a venue that is scenic and pre-decorated because if you’re traveling without a car, like we did, you are definitely limited in what you can bring! There were things I didn’t even think to bring, like a steamer for our dresses, that our venue had on site for us to use thank goodness!”

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If you look close, there’s a lucky ladybug designed into their wedding cake!

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Even without a scouting trip to Michigan, this darling Texas duo had an amazing big day!

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Paul Retherford (Wedding Photos), Hillary Anne Photography (Engagement Photos)

Wedding Vendors: Wedding Website + Ideas: The KnotVenue: Castle Farms (Knight’s Castle and Knight’s Courtyard), Bakery: Bella e Dolce, Florist: Thyme Hill Designs, Caterer: Catering by Kelly’s, Shuttle: Midnight Madness, Hair Salon: La Dolce VitaOfficiant: Charlevoix Wedding Pastor, STD’s + Invitations: Vista Print, Music: “Cancel Monday” Band

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Perfect Table Design for A Beach Wedding

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Today’s event isn’t a full wedding, but a close up look at what an amazing destination wedding reception table could be.  This party, produced and designed by the talented team at BROWNHOT Events took place in Malibu, CA overlooking the perfect Pacific Ocean.

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We asked Jeff Brown of BROWNHOT Events to share with us the inspiration behind this beach wedding table inspiration.  “The client wanted a “simple” chic summer dinner table that would emulate the seaside beach property in Malibu.”  So he brought the sea to the seaside dinner!

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“We brought “under the sea” atop the table – using elements that emulated creatures and objects and visuals found underwater – coral, pincushion protea as anemones, succulents as kelp/seaweed, and crisp white linen for the sandy underbottom.” 

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“Our salmon and mango palette paid homage to the great iconic Malibu sunset colors.”

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“It was a big hit with the lucky guests.  The environment evoked luxe indulgence, in extreme comfort.”

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We asked Jeff to share some of his insider expertise with those of you planning a beach wedding.  Here’s his great advice!  “Most definitely visit the site at nighttime – temperatures drop, lighting shifts, and the moist dew sets in – everywhere.  Plan accordingly.  Dance floors become slick, food can turn wilted, and guests can become chilly – even on the hottest summer night.  Choose a menu that holds up easily, and slip lightweight throws on chairbacks for added warmth.”

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Photography: Claire Barrett Photography

Event Vendors: Event Design + Production: BROWNHot Events, Florals: Sticks and Stones Design, Linens, Chairs, Cushion: Resource One Linens, Catering: Chef Cordelia

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A Rustic Outdoor I Do in High Falls, New York

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Jessica and Edward knew what they were looking for when they began their destination wedding location search and when they landed in High Falls, NY – they knew they were home for the big day.  Jessica shared with us their story.  “We spent a lot of time researching places. I actually don’t remember how I stumbled upon Shadowlawn. But we were looking for a barn wedding close to NYC without being too close. They were such a pleasure to work with and the location was simply gorgeous. We couldn’t have asked for more.”

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“Our favorite moment was going to take photos in the field after our ceremony and our first dance.”

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We took 9 months to plan this wedding and it was pretty easy going. I would definitely recommend trying to add something personal to the day so your guests feel loved and thought about. We added the lawn games just for that! We had family flying in from the UK and Canada and wanted them to feel at home.”

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Advice for others?  “Stay focused on what the day is about. Everything else will fall into place if the only priority you have is marrying your fiance with all your family and friends there.”

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For the favors, this couple got really creative (and personal)!  “Our friends have a rooftop hive in Brooklyn, so we jarred it from them! We felt it matched the theme of the day and was a little more personal.”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Reminisce Photography

Wedding Vendors: Wedding Location: Shadow Lawn, Wedding Dress: Jim Hjelm, Bridesmaid Dresses + Men’s Suits: J. Crew, Shoes: Coach, Hair: La Rousse Hair and Nails, Caterer: BBQ Food truck: Miss Lucy’s Kitchen, DIY: flowers, boutineers, invitations, Bunting: Etsy, Paper Lanterns: Save on Crafts, Lace tablecloths: grandmother made, Officiant: Bride’s brother

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A Vintage, Rustic Wedding with a Tropical Twist in Lahaina, Maui

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We’re clearly loving Hawaii this week with another wonderful wedding from Maui!  Clarice and Omair wed in beautiful Lahaina, on the island of Maui in Hawaii.  The couple traveled from San Francisco to do say I do at the Hyatt Regency Maui.  This destination wedding wasn’t all travelers though – the bride is originally from Maui so friends and loved ones came from both near and far to celebrate together.

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We asked the bride what is was like returning home for her wedding.  “Actually, I initially didn’t want to have the wedding on Maui. We recently moved to San Francisco after many years of living in Southern California, and most of our friends live there, too. So I really wanted to have the wedding there – I was worried no one would want to travel all the way to Maui! And I wasn’t sure I could pull off planning a destination wedding. Having the wedding on Maui was actually my husband’s idea. He had been a few times with me and absolutely loves it, and told me it would be the perfect place. And of course, he was right. I’m so glad we got married on Maui because it’s where I grew up and where all my family is. It just felt very comfortable and familiar to be back. I’ve been living away from Maui for 12 years now, but I still consider it to be my home, and I’m always happiest when I’m there. It was also nice because we got married at the Hyatt because I have memories of going there when I was little, so it just felt right to have the wedding there as well.”

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“I really enjoyed the whole process of getting ready with my mom and sister. It was just hours of relaxing, having our make up and hair done and drinking champagne. It was awesome!”

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One of my favorite moments of the day was when we were exchanging vows. We had decided early on that we were going to write our own…but had both not written them until the very last minute. My husband is totally not the type to spill his guts (especially in public), but his vows were so heart felt and sincere that it totally caught me off guard. I was completely speechless after he read them!”

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We asked the couple if they were glad they had a high tech wedding with Instagram and the answer was a big yes!  “Yes, totally! Instagram has turned everyone into a photographer (myself included!), and so it was nice (and easy) to see everyone’s pictures in one place.”

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“The reception was amazing because we got to have all our friends and family in one place! It’s never happened before, and it was seriously the best time.”

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And this one-of-a-kind cake topper?  “These lego people were supposed to represent us as a couple. We used these little guys for our save-the-dates because we felt weird about our pictures being on people’s refrigerators. I know that sounds weird, but it’s totally true. So we scoured the internet for wedding lego people. We found the bride pretty easily, but had a hard time with the groom. We actually had to order his head and hands separately, but it was worth all the work! We love them! We plan on taking them with us on our honeymoon to Italy in May.” 

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For favors, the couple went with a local theme!  “We gave away Big Island Candies chocolate dipped macadamia nut shortbread cookies. And they really are as good as they sound! Maybe even better! They are my husband’s favorite cookies. My mom, sister and I stamped and embossed cards with a “thank you” stamp, and put the cards and cookies in little cellophane bags.” 

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer:  Joanna Tano Photography

Wedding Vendors: Venue: Hyatt Maui, Dress: Amy Kuschel, Flowers: Bella Bloom, Big Island Candies, DJ: DJ Boomshot, Officiant: Pia Aluli, Photo Booth: Strike a Pose, Invitations: Paper Source 

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A Sweet Fairmont Kea Lani Maui Destination Wedding

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Jayme and Corey wed at the beautiful Fairmont Kea Lani Maui where they hosted an intimate group of loved ones for their destination wedding.  The bride shared with us their sweet story.  “Corey asked me to marry him while I was enjoying the emerald city views of Seattle, just before the clock hit 12:00 am on New Years Eve of 2011! From there, the planning began. We wanted a small, intimate wedding where everyone could relax and have fun so we figured there’d be no better way to celebrate than on the sunny island of Maui with 45 of our closest family and friends! We chose Maui as this was the destination of Corey and my first vacation together.”

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 “The journey of a lifetime began with a fun-filled flight from YVR to OGG. To start the celebration off we hosted a sunset sail catamaran cruise enjoying the views of Maui’s west coast – we wanted the guests to get to know each other before the big celebration. On the day of the wedding, the bridesmaids wore beautiful yellow dresses from David’s Bridal that were airy and moved with the warm breeze. Corey and the groomsmen were outfitted in grey custom tailored suits from Indochino paired with white shirts and wood cuff links. I absolutely fell in love with a Venice laced dress detailed with beads and crystals, the best feature being the v-neckline and back, which complemented the long train nicely.”

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 “The wedding was held at the Fairmont Kea Lani in Wailea as the hotel enabled us to have both the ceremony and reception on the hotel grounds. I walked down the aisle while the cello artist strummed Clocks by Coldplay, my favourite song! Shepherd hooks with hanging mason jars lined the aisle and these were filled with white hydrangeas and bright yellow billy balls; the ribbons on the jars moved just like my bridesmaids’ dresses – softly as we walked by. The ceremony took place in the afternoon along a terraced edge where we spoke our vows and said our “I do’s” overlooking the ocean.” 

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 “The reception was held in an open air venue within the hotel which provided picturesque views of the sunset during the scrumptious seafood dinner. We cut the two-tiered red velvet and pineapple cake blanketed with butter cream icing just after the speeches. Finally, the night ended with lots of dancing, singing, and good laughs!”

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 “We are definitely still enjoying each other and the memories!”

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Congratulations to the newlyweds!

Destination Wedding Photographer: Tomasz Wagner

Wedding Vendors: Venue, Catering, Cake: Fairmont Kea Lani Maui, Wedding Dress: Allure Bridals, Flowers: Bella Bloom Floral Boutique, Invitations + Ceremony Cards: Design By Dainty, Shoes: Lauren Conrad, Bridesmaids Dresses: David’s Bridal – Canary Yellow Long Sheer Chiffon Dress, Make Up & Hair: Juvenal’s Hair Salon at Fairmont Kea Lani Maui, Groom Suit: Custom made at Indochino, Groom Shoes: Ferragamo, Officiant: Reverend Al Terry, Ceremony Music: Silvina Samuel, Reception Music: DJ Scott, Wedding Favors: Coffee from Maui Coffee Company, Guestbook & Frame: Etsy, Ribbon Wands: Etsy, Table Numbers & Seating Cards: Paper Girl Studios

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