We usually stick to showcasing weddings that took place in our beloved South, but when a bride goes to this much trouble to bring the South to her, well, we think that deserves a little love on Southern Weddings! Sarah’s Momma, who just so happens to own an antique shop in Texas, drove a UHaul full of vintage Southern goodness all the way out to California for her daughter’s wedding. The warm and cozy celebration that resulted was worth all the miles, as I think you’ll see. Michelle Warren’s lovely film images do an exquisite job of documenting the warm and cozy celebration that followed, helping us to see that yes, all those hours behind the wheel were well spent for Sarah + Dan!
My wedding dress was one of the first ones I tried on. I actually saw it in on a mannequin in the window of the bridal boutique and knew I had to try it on. It was the only one they had in stock, so I was embarrassed that I made the sales girl go into the window display and take it off the mannequin, but it was worth it. It was love at first sight!
I walked down the aisle to the love theme from Cinema Paradiso, a great, romantic Italian movie that we both love. We walked back up the aisle to “Married Life” from the Pixar movie, Up. It’s the song that plays during the first 10 minutes when they go through the timeline of the old couple’s relationship. It’s a very touching and poignant scene.
Do you love that Sarah and her Dad drove up to the ceremony in a lovingly restored 1940’s truck? We do!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Right after the ceremony, we had to drive back to the reception in the old pickup truck and had a moment alone to really absorb the moment and reflect.
Here’s some good news from Sarah for those of you painstakingly planning and constructing details (and sometimes wondering if anyone will notice): they will! My advice? Plan everything WAY in advance. Vendors get booked up far earlier than you would imagine. Also, make sure to add lots of personal touches. Your guests will really appreciate it.
And yes, there were beautiful details galore at this wedding! Renae’s Bouquet used local wildflowers and herbs along with roses and peonies for the arrangements and bouquets, and everything was arranged in vintage bottles and containers that Sarah’s mom sourced from flea markets in Texas (see: UHaul above!).
Wedding foosball — so fun!
We had a very simple carrot cake with some flower decorations as our wedding cake, but we had an amazing dessert buffet, with delicious mini cupcakes, pies, and my favorite giant chocolate chip cookies from a baker in Chicago!
How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. We met in college in probably the most “college-y” way you can meet: over a game of beer pong. Instantly bonding over our love of drinking games and movies, we agreed to meet up in our film class the next day. Gradually, over the course of the school year, the friendship morphed into a romantic relationship.
Describe the proposal. Having dated for five years, including a period of cross-country long distance, it soon became clear that we were going to be together forever. Our common desire to work in entertainment brought us both to Los Angeles, where we now live and work. One of our favorite weekend trips is driving up to the Santa Ynez Valley, filled with amazing wineries, gorgeous scenery, and delicious food. On our five year anniversary, we decided to take a trip up to celebrate, and while picnicking, Dan popped the question! By the end of the weekend, we knew that they had to get married up there as well.
In what month did you get married? June 2011
How many guests attended your wedding? Around 120
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The location! We had guests coming in from all over the world, and everyone was impressed with the beautiful venue in the vineyards of the Central Californian Coast.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Being from Texas, I had to have some type of BBQ at the wedding! We had three food stations: Texan food (brisket, onion rings, etc) for my upbringing, European food (Swiss and Spanish favorites) from Dan’s childhood, and Californian produce (from where we live now). More Southern details include the rustic feel of our barn reception, the 1940s Ford pickup truck that I drove up to the ceremony in and the line dancing!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? We had to bring in everything at the venue…even the bathrooms! Having the reception in the barn was great because it was a blank canvas to work with, but there were so many decisions to make since we had to bring everything in for the event. My mom brought in lots of great antiques and vintage details from Texas. She even drove a Uhaul out to California with all of her decorations!
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Food and wine! It was great to give our guests such a big selection, and they got to experience all of the delicious local produce and wines from the Central Coast area.
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? Our ceremony was very personalized. We worked with the officiant and he incorporated our favorite traits about our spouse into the ceremony. We also wrote our own vows. I loved that we both reiterated how natural and organic our relationship has been. It has never felt like “hard work.” We just really enjoy each other’s company and everything that comes with that.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? The 1 Corinthians 13 passage that everyone has at their wedding because my parents used it as their wedding vows.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We just bought a house! Looking forward to decorating, sprucing it up, and having lots of parties in our backyard this summer!
Photographer: Michelle Warren Photography // Planner: Carla Jacobsen of Special Occasions // Ceremony venue: Coquelicot Estate Vineyard / // Florist: Renae’s Bouquet // Dessert: Pattibakes, Enjoy Cupcakes, & Carol’s Cookies // Caterer: New West Catering // Rentals: Town & Country Rentals // Linens: La Tavola Linens // Paper Products: Urbanic Paper Boutique // Bride’s Dress: Melissa Sweet // Bride’s Hair Accessories/Veil/Jewelry: Vintage // Bride’s Shoes: London Sole // Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale