Cathy + Craig | Rivini Wedding from Studio Castillero

Gorgeous flowers and a soft pink and grey color scheme create an ultra romantic atmosphere at today’s Real Wedding. Cathy and Craig said “I Do” under picture perfect California skies, surrounded by family and friends.  A stylish event space and spirited details (love the awesome groom’s cake!) made this celebration a night to remember. At the center of it all, Cathy looked simply stunning in her elegant Rivini gown. It was truly a dream come true for this beautiful bride and her handsome husband!

Cathy + Craig | July 8th, 2012 | Livermore, California

The ceremony

Our wedding ceremony was held on the lush patio at the Palms Event Center. It was a beautiful day in July. Blue skies, breathtaking views of the vineyards and the gently sloping foothills were our backdrop. Our florist had done a fantastic job and created four gorgeous and elegant arrangements of peonies, orchids, and hydrangeas in shades of cream, white, and soft pink that framed the isle. We had all our loved ones in one place and we couldn’t have asked for more.

The reception

For our reception we dined and partied the evening away in the Palms grand estate room which was lined with wine barrels and over 200 tea lights. I wanted to have the room be soft and romantic and exude what I wanted the night to be about: romance and love. Our wedding colors were white, a light and airy grey and soft pinks. We had white draping put behind the head table along with behind our dessert bar. We also had a gorgeous large accent mirror placed behind the dessert bar that had writing on it that read “All you need in life is love and…. a little dessert”. We place a white dance floor in the middle of the room and framed it with some lounge seating. It was important to us that our guest had a great time so what better way to do that then to dance the night away? All in all, from our wedding planner to our amazing florist to the staff at the Palms and our fun loving photographers, our vendors went above and beyond and gave my husband and I a wedding that surpassed what we could have ever dreamed of.

Cathy’s dress search

When I started my wedding dress search I had intended on a lace style gown, but as I started trying on dresses, I realized that they did not flatter me. The longer I searched the more confused I got. I tried on over a 100 dresses but at some point I saw the Lismora on a wedding blog and fell completely in love with the dress (but not the price tag). I tried to put it out of my mind but could not. I thought I could order it in at a local bridal salon to try on so that I would find out that maybe I didn’t love it. Well I was wrong there. I tried it on and I loved it just as much as when I had seen it on the blog if not more. I gave myself another month to try on similar styles but nothing compared so I ended up buying my Lismora, and I couldn’t have been happier.

The way Cathy felt in her wedding dress

Elegant, Beautiful, Glamorous

Why Cathy decided to sell her wedding dress

Wedding gowns are a thing of beauty and it saddens me to think that they are only worn once and then put away somewhere in a dark closet. I want someone else to be able to feel the same way I did on my wedding day in a gorgeous couture wedding dress, but without having to spend all that money.

Cathy’s wedding dress: Rivini, Lismora

Photography: Rachel and Rico from Studio Castillero

Ceremony & Reception Venue: Palms Event Center 

Event Planning: Kristen of Sugar Rush Events 

Floral Design: Vo Floral Designs 

Cake and Cupcake Tower: Beth at Studio Cake 

Other Desserts and Grooms Cake: Rachael and Kyle, Sweet Tooth Confections 

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Joanna + Charles | Pronovias Wedding from Rich Frederick Photography

This French Chic themed wedding  is brimming with arts, culture and lots of personal and meaningful touches! Chorus performance of ‘Eva Maria’ during Joanna + Charles’ ceremony…reception entertainment from a 14-piece big band…a ballet performance during dinner…and my favorite, ending the night with a Greek band and cigar and candy bar. Don’t miss Joanna’s wardrobe change from her classic and elegant Pronovias wedding gown into a super sleek and sexy brocade party dress.  Or the really thoughtfully themed table scapes:  framed pictures of the couple’s most favorite pieces of art that speak of love…Enjoy!

Joanna + Charles | August 27, 2011 | Lenox, MA

The Ceremony
We wanted the ceremony to be symbolic of what matters most to us, and have our own personal touches. So rather than have a religious ceremony, we had one of our best friends who has been married for nearly 25 years be the officiator. He spoke so beautifully, and then we also had one of my best friends read a poem in our honor by E.E. Cummings, ‘I Hold Your Heart’. In honor of my late grandmother, we also had a chorus perform ‘Eva Maria’. We exchanged our own vows. We even had our puppy walk down the aisle with the flower girl. It was beautiful and meaningful to us.

The Reception
The reception was elegant, French Chic. We wanted our celebration to be a throwback to an opulent era in a mansion. We had the ballroom for dancing with a 14-piece big band dressed in tuxedos. During dinner we had a ballet performance from a local non-profit dance company that performed ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’. Each table had a framed picture rather than number, of our most favorite pieces of art that speak of love, for instance, Romeo and Juliet (theater), La Boheme (Opera), Moonlight Sonata (classical music), etc. Flowers and candlelight were everywhere. We also ended up having a Greek band and a cigar and candy bar.

Joanna’s Dress Search
In the beginning I did start my dress search with a specific style in mind. I had seen a picture in a magazine, and although I wasn’t sure I wanted that exact dress, I really liked the fit on the model. I had gone all over Manhattan, including Kleinfields, Bergdorfs and other wedding ateliers. But finally I said I might as well go to Pronovias where the magazine picture was taken from. I tried on the dress I saw from the magazine and I loved it. It fit perfectly and although the top was not at all what I envisioned or planned, I loved the fit so much and the overall dress was unique that I knew it was the one.

How Joanna Felt in Her Wedding Dress
Elegant, Classic, Stunning

Why Joanna Decided to Sell Her Wedding Dress
I want someone else to enjoy it. It was so beautiful and I loved wearing it but really I only wore it for a few hours. After the ceremony and pictures I changed into a party dress so I could dance. So rather than keep it in a box, I want to know someone else has also been able to enjoy it on their special day.

Wedding Dress: Pronovias | Photography: Rich Frederick Photography | Ceremony and Reception Venue: The Elm Court Estate | Event Planning: Today’s featured bride and her mother, Valerie James of Val’s Restaurant & Catering | Floral Design: The Flower StopCake: Crown Bakery

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Joanna + Brett | Monique Lhuillier Wedding from Julie Caine Photography

Elegant, Glowing and utterly Feminine’…what a magical way for Joanna to feel on her wedding day, not to mention such a perfect description for this entire wedding in Stanford + Menlo Park, California.  I am in love with Joanna + Brett’s venue choices for their special day, such grand and awe-inspiring spaces. And yet, as Joanna points out: ‘An understated glamor that was impressive but comfortable.’ So spot on! Other details not to miss: Joanna’s gorgeous locks styled to the side, really compliments the strapless, sweetheart neckline and full ball gown of her Monique Lhuillier dress called, Bellflower…super evocative photography by Julie Caine…and the bride’s autumnal inspired bouquet in deep, rich hues of red, yellow, orange and a touch of pink.  Just divine, enjoy!

Joanna + Brett | September 8, 2012 | Stanford, California

The Ceremony
We wanted something formal yet personal and Stanford meant a lot to us.  We had actually met at Stanford in graduate school and wanted to share with our guests the place that we had found each other.

The Reception
We picked the Rosewood in Menlo Park because it embodied the modern Northern California lifestyle: New American cuisine, indoor-outdoor spaces, amazing views of the Santa Cruz mountains, and an understated glamor that was impressive but comfortable.

Joanna’s Dress Search
I actually had no idea which style would fit me best, but I started off thinking I would do something A-line and simple.  Fairly quickly I realized I loved Monique Lhuillier dresses – they just fit me best – so I started trying on her different styles. I thought I would go for a simpler gown but I ended up with the ball gown.  I couldn’t help myself!

How Joanna Felt in Her Wedding Dress
Elegant, Glowing and utterly Feminine

Why Joanna Decided to Sell Her Wedding Dress
My mother had resolutely saved her wedding dress from the 70s – but the style is so far from anything we wear today – it was never a question of whether I would wear it.  I expect that to be the same for my daughter when she goes to pick out a dress.  And for me, the pictures are what matters and what I will display and use to remember our special day. No use having something if it will sit in my closet for decades!

Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier ‘BellFlower’ | Photography: Julie Caine | Ceremony Venue: Stanford Memorial Church | Reception Venue: The Rosewood Sand Hill Resort | Event Planning: Julie Briggs Dunn | Floral Design: Huckleberry Karen | Cake: The Rosewood Sand Hill | Make-up and Hair: The Glamourist  

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Carolyn + Colin | Amsale Wedding from Abby Jiu Photography

Here is a classic and traditional wedding that comes to us from downtown Baltimore.  With a grand cathedral church ceremony and an elegant and polished ballroom reception, Carolyn and Colin’s special day looked absolutely stunning!  I love that while searching for their reception venue, Carolyn and Colin toured the Four Seasons Hotel in hard hats as it was still under construction at the time of their viewing.  And how about Carolyn’s hairstyle and Amsale gown called Renee?! Wearing a low full bun perfectly compliments the unique detailing of Carolyn’s one shoulder faille de soie fit and flare gown with beaded floral detail at the shoulder. Just exquisite – Enjoy!

Carolyn + Colin | July 28, 2012 | Corpus Christi Church + Four Seasons Hotel, Baltimore

The Ceremony
Our ceremony was held at corpus Christi Church, a stunning church right in the Bolton hill neighborhood of downtown Baltimore. We fell in love with it as soon as we walked in as it’s so beautiful it takes your breath away. I thought I would be a nervous wreck before walking down the aisle but I ended up feeling just completely calm and so happy. Being up there with Colin was by far the best moment of the day.

The Reception
Our reception was at the four seasons on the waterfront in downtown Baltimore. It just opened last November so when searching for our venue Colin and I toured the hotel in hard hats! We decided to go with it without ever having seen the finished ballroom. It ended up being perfect – gorgeous views of the harbor, great food and an amazing pool we all recovered in the next day!

Carolyn’s Dress Search
I started my dress search thinking I might want something completely different – like a vintage lace look. It ended up not looking great on me. I spotted my dress in the window of Hitched in Georgetown and knew I wanted to try it on…when I put it on it just felt completely my style.

How Carolyn Felt in Her Wedding Dress
Classic, Beautiful, Sassy

Why Carolyn Decided to Sell Her Wedding Dress
I decided to sell my dress because I won’t wear it again and it’s so beautiful, I hope someone else can enjoy it as much as I did.

Wedding Dress: Amsale ‘Renee’ | Photography: Abby Jiu Photography | Ceremony Venue: Corpus Christi | Reception Venue: Four Seasons Hotel | Floral: Wicked Willow | Cake: Sugar Bakers

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