FROM THE BRIDE // My wedding was one that I have always envisioned it to be. Everything materialized just the way I wanted. It was one of the most exciting event in my life and, you know, how they say that it is every little girl’s dream to wear a long white flowing beautiful wedding gown, holding a beautiful bouquet, walking down the aisles and a handsome smiling groom (Prince Charming) waiting at the altar, beautiful church and surrounded by loved ones and friends. I can say that my wedding was a success! I felt like a princess and it was a dream come true! It was perfect! Could not ask for anything more.
My favorite part of the event was walking down the aisles to meet my groom, being married to my best friend and the person who genuinely cares for me and who I care for. It was very exciting to see all my loved ones and friends coming from near and far to be there at the wedding, seeing their smiling faces and wishing me and my husband all good wishes. The walking down the aisles was truly memorable to me because I had my dad walking with me, looking so sharp in his tuxedo and giving his full blessing to me and my husband. It was more of a feeling inside me that is somehow difficult to describe – the realization and excitement of having my own family other than my immediate family like my parents and siblings – but at the same time be united with someone who I know truly loves me and most importantly, being married in a church where I felt God’s presence and warm blessings. These feelings are remarkably unique that is beyond words to describe.
I have always wanted a wedding where the center of attention will be focused not only on the bride and groom but the beautiful flowers that will be everywhere, from the bouquets, the corsages and boutonnières to the church decoration, reception decoration the same floral theme echoed in the invitations, photo booth and table arrangements. I have gone through some wedding magazines in the past and have picked up ideas here and there but I had my own signature stamps on these as I envisioned flowers and floral arrangements with a variety of huge garden roses, peonies, dahlias in a variety of colors were the highlights. I was so glad and fortunate that my mom and I found the exact flowers that we wanted at the flower mart on the day that we came to buy them. By the way, we made multiple visits to the flower mart months before the wedding and made friends with the vendors who gave us good values for the flowers we wanted. I guess it also helped the fact that I am an artist and surrounded with a family of artists who I consulted and got ideas from. I wanted that part of my wedding to be unique and I think I was successful in that regard.
To me the best and important part about planning my wedding was having the right photographers to memorialize each and every step and every part of this memorable event. I had been so fortunate to have chosen Sun and Sparrow as my photographers. After looking at several vendors and the quality and type of work that they produced I narrowed my choice to these awesome group of ladies. They were responsive to all my requests and they actually had the unique ability to predict ahead of time what I wanted them to do as they do not need a lot of explanation on what I envisioned the photographs to be. We were just in the same wave lengths as them or maybe because they were just talented and artistic plus very perceptive to the wishes of the bride. I have to be honest that planning a wedding is not easy especially because I chose not to have a wedding planner because I just wanted to make sure that I will have a first-hand say on each aspect of the wedding and wantedeverything to be perfect. It helped to have the right people to help out with the details but to me the photographers were the most crucial part because if a person is to memorialize all the hard work, expense and details only the best photographers have the capability to do that.
My primary advice will be having the right people to help you plan your wedding such as immediate loved ones who know your likes and dislikes and who truly care for you — not because of the money you pay them to do the job. Additionally, planning a wedding is a task that cannot be done by one person even if a bride has a good wedding planner. There are still so many details that need to be looked at. Someone, not necessarily the bride, should make a grid that shows progress of planning, contact people, expense involved, source of funding, oversees a variety of tasks from start to finish. Without this grid and progress reports a bunch of important details will be forgotten or missed out. Have a variety of options just in case one plan does not work especially if there are other options that are similar to choose from. Pay attention to timelines because before you know it the wedding date is just around the corner. Always good to have more than less on anything but also pay attention to your budget. Be smart in finding out if there are certain aspects of the wedding that you can do yourself and not pay big bucks, such as making table signs and having these printed at CostCo instead of paying printing services companies big bucks. Be resourceful and do not be afraid to use the internet for help on anything related to the wedding. You never know what could be useful and helpful. Assign people to help you especially if they are willing to volunteer but make sure you provide extra details about how you want things done. Do not say no to “freebies”. Family members or even guests will volunteer a photo booth or a beautiful limo as gifts instead of the usual registry presents you and your groom are encouraging people to register. These “freebies” / presents turn out to be hits instead of the frying pans and bed sheets that you wished people will give you. My husband and I accepted these and we’re happy we did. Be flexible because not everything that you plan for will not happen as you cannot force certain individuals to do what you wish them to do all the time. Compromise because an unhappy and resentful bride will create an ugly and grumpy one who will not look good in pictures. I believe all the nitty gritty details will be forgotten including the stress associated with the planning but the pictures will stay forever so always have apositive attitude and disposition because whether you like it or not pictures will pick up everything.
Romantic Palos Verdes Estates wedding // ©2016 Sun & Sparrow palos verdes wedding photographer
FROM THE BRIDE // Both Ryan and I enjoyed our wedding day in Romantic Palos Verdes Estates. Looking over my whole day, we loved seeing how everything pulled together—especially since most of our wedding planning was long distance. We loved our first look, getting to share a moment together just the two of us before the day of celebration began. Since the wedding is really about the vows and the commitment we’ve made to each other before God, we both loved our ceremony and appreciated getting to take communion together. Another memorable moment for us was sitting at the sweetheart table at the reception and looking out to see all of our friends and family enjoying each other. We loved sharing the day with our loved ones.
Our decor was centered around the combination of olive branches and silver geometric pieces. I love the organic look coupled with a clean modern feel. While wedding planning is big undertaking, I felt so supported through all the help by my family and friends—it would not have been possible without them. It was a huge blessing to be able to work with such incredible local vendors, many of whom are friends with me and my family. We had a truly special group of people making our day possible and we are incredibly grateful for each person involved.
My advice for anyone planning their wedding is that if you’re normally pretty shy about what you like, feel free to speak up and make your voice heard while remembering that the day should reflect both the bride and the groom. I hope you don’t feel pressured to have the “pinterest perfect” wedding and feel the freedom to do what’s right for your situation.
MY VENDORS //
Wedding Coordinator: http://www.canary-events.com
Ceremony Venue: Rolling Hills Covenant Church, http://www.rollinghillscovenant.com
Florals: Laceroots Floral, http://laceroots.com
Bride’s Attire: Dress from Bella Sera Bridal, Danvers, MA: http://bellaserabride.com, Dress designer: Essense of Australia, https://www.essensedesigns.com, Shoes from: Keds for Kate Spade New York, https://www.katespade.com
Hair and Makeup: Wild Orchid Hair & Make-Up Studio, http://www.wohair.com
Bridesmaid Dresses: Azazie, http://www.azazie.com
Groom’s Attire: Suit from J. Crew, https://www.jcrew.com, Shoes from Cole Haan, http://www.colehaan.com
Groomsmen Suits: The Black Tux, https://theblacktux.com
Reception Venue: DoubleTree Torrance, http://doubletree3.hilton.com
Wedding Cake: Torrance Bakery, http://www.torrancebakery.com
DJ: Night to Remember DJs, http://needdjs.com
Dreamy Wayfarer’s Chapel wedding // ©2016 Sun & Sparrow // Los Angeles luxury wedding photography
FROM THE BRIDE // We designed our decor to portray our relationship as a couple. We pulled very organic and natural pieces with vintage touches throughout our wedding venue design. We felt drawn to our home roots of the South Bay area. Adrain was in his element within an architectural piece of history at Wayfarers Chapel. The “Glass Chapel” set the tone to our wedding decor with epic cliff-side ocean views and lush grounds. We couldn’t have asked for a more dreamy day to be captured with Sun & Sparrow! Although our most memorable moment was the first look, our favorite moment was right before I walked down the aisle. As I came around the corner of the chapel with my mother arm in arm to see all our loved ones starring at me, I only saw Adrain at the front alter wave at me. My heart melted all over again for this man and I couldn’t wait to get to him!
Choosing a photographer was a process! Adrian, a professional photographer himself, had an exponential expectation for wedding photos.We were looking for a unique organic style and a natural ability to capture special moments to reveal our personalities. When an email from Tiffani stating both Adrain & I had requested the same information for our upcoming wedding, we set up a phone conference that sealed the deal!
My biggest bit of advice to planning brides is not to stress or become overwhelmed! At the end of the wedding planning craziness, you’re marrying your best friend! Enjoy the wedding prep…its our vision coming to life!
My favorite part about being married now, as cheesy as it sounds, is knowing this is it and to continue building our lives together as a unit! Looking down to see our rings and carrying out our vows on a daily basis!
©2015 Sun & Sparrow photo & film // Fairytale engagement in Palos Verdes
FROM THE BRIDE // After spending nearly 10 years together, Jimmy proposed on our 7th anniversary. Jimmy made reservations to one of my favorite restaurants in Orange County. The restaurant location in my hometown New Orleans, actually has many family memories for me, so it was the perfect place for us to make a new one. When we arrived at the restaurant, I was surprised to see some familiar faces at the bar area. It was Jimmy’s cousins and two closest friends. It was totally unexpected, but I didn’t think much of it. We all ended up having dinner together. Towards the end of the evening, Jimmy asked me to be his example of his “Best Sales Pitch Ever.” He asked for my credit card and to close my eyes while he wrote something on paper. Little did I know…when I opened my eyes, I found Jimmy on one knee with the most beautiful ring. The paper said “Jennifer, this is my best sales pitch ever…Will you marry me?” When it comes to surprises, Jimmy is horrible and almost always caves in. This time he was able to keep his proposal plan a secret for over 6 weeks! Iwas so shocked and happy, I couldn’t stop grinning and bawled my eyes out! Of course I told him YES! And this was all filmed and facilitated by Jimmy’s cousins and friends! We celebrated this special moment with champagne and dessert. This is definitely one of the best ‘purchase’ I’ve ever made! I am counting down the days until I get to say ‘I do’ to my best friend, gym partner, and other half. I can’t wait for our families to meet for the first time at our wedding and to start a new adventure with my husband-to-be!