Our Romantical and Musical Party Forever #KEEK Wedding!
Mayyyybe you saw it on OffbeatBride.com? Here’s a little more about our awesome Party Forever wedding.
Almost an entire year ago (!!!!!!), on a perfectly sunny, high 70s early fall day, my boyfriend of 6 years and I made it official and we got married! With so much help from friends and family, for which we are beyond grateful for, it was the very best day ever.
Erik proposed in March of 2013, and we found a new venue in the heart of the hills of Topanga who had a date open for October 12 of the same year. It was super fast planning, and it all came together at the last minute.
The LA-area venue, Oak Creek Ranch, was situated in a hillside as a private home and venue, surrounded by ancient oak trees and newly planted succulents with tons of eclectic art and natural beauty.
A splendid mix of contrasts we loved. It was perfect for our super romantical rock n roll wedding.We were even able to use wine produced from their vineyard throughout the night. The Cabernet is fantastic.
My 20s inspired engagement ring was a sort of a hand-me-down from my Nana. We got to use her stunning emerald cut diamond and a few baguettes and created this beauty along with Jay Carlile, an incredible Beverly Hills jeweler and friend. The wedding band was also made of the baguettes from my nana. We were so lucky! And in case you were wondering, I kept Essie’s Barefoot and Topless light pink polish on for the entirety of our engagement, and on our wedding day. Kara Ackerman was sweet enough to lend my something borrowed and blue (and my birthstone for energy and luck!) in the form of aquamarine drop earrings.
I was beyond lucky that two amazing and talented friends were able to glam me up (albeit naturally!). Nicole Walmsley layered Jouer Cosmetics cream shadows to create a bronze-y smokey eye, and added a few lashes (not sure how, I couldn’t stop moving, texting, talking, etc.). She finished off with the slightest sweep of bronze and blush and Jouer’s Bare Rose lip gloss. Natalie Vermiglio was sweet enough to rock the most rocker boho updo on the planet that looked perfect with my etsy-sourced vintage 20s veil.
My dress. I LOVE MY DRESS. I still put it on. About once a month.
I found it (on sale!!!) at one of my lifelong favorite LA boutiques, Les Habitudes. Phenomenal service, phenomenal selection, beautiful space, stunning, one-of-a-kind all handmade dresses of the most incredible and delicate fabrics.
My shoes were the hardest to find. I knew I wanted a flat sandal, but since my dress wasn’t white, it was actually quite difficult to find the perfect sandal.
I finally found these butterfly sandals at Valentino. I would not recommend wrap ankle straps for a hilly venue – my feet were numb chunks of meat after a whole day in them! #worthit
SIDENOTE/Bride Advice: I am bummed that I didn’t have dark red toes. I let someone tell me it wasn’t bridal enough. UGH! Follow your instincts, all! Don’t listen to others when your gut is telling you exactly how to be you!! Toes, flowers, decor, whatever!
My hubby looked so handsome! We found his suit and shirt at Ted Baker, and tie at Original Penguin.
His groomsmen all wore their own suits with shirts and ties from Life|After|Denim.
My beautiful ladies all picked their own dresses and shoes in a palette that worked with the scene. I was kinda glad my girls personalities could all shine through, and that they were comfortable! If you’re interested in some bridesmaids dressing tips, click here.
Loved this Stop Staring dress on bestie and OffbeatBride.com editor Megan Finley.
Getting a serious pic was impossible, so we didn’t even try. We love our wedding party. SO MUCH!
Our florist, The Paper Arum, used vintage lace across the stone stage and lined the aisle with lavender on the ground and cafe au lait dahlias in jars hanging from the chairs.
The Sonus quartet, lead by the stunning Kathleen Sloan, performed arrangements made by Erik. As soon as they started the processional song for the wedding party, Sia’s “Breathe Me” I burst into tears. It was so beautiful to hear those violins oozing out the most beautiful melody I’ve ever heard in my life.
We have the best friends. Pre-game huddle.
But in all seriousness, as our wedding party was lined up and ready to head down the aisle, I went to the front of the lineup and hugged every single person before they went down with giant tears streaming down my face. I wasn’t sad, it was all just so stupidly beautiful and romantic, and yes, maybe I wanted to clear some of the stress out of the day before the ceremony, but wow, it was such a cathartic moment for me.
Auntie Megan was sweet enough to walk Eli, our dog, down the aisle.
And of course, I maybe made some last minute wardrobe adjustments. Gap was sweet enough to gift me our 4 ring bearers shirts, belts and jeans, and we accessorized with checkerboard Vans and the boys picked out their own bow ties.
Our sweet flower girls wore dresses from Charabia Paris with pink raffia belts and Minnetonka moccasins.
Both of my parents walked me down the aisle to “Something” by The Beatles. It was such a surreal moment. All these people watching, and it was so beautiful and emotional and such an amazing tradition to be a part of. Also, I found my dad’s vintage Lanvin tie in a Burbank thrift shop. Was (and is!) a phenomenal piece!
The ceremony was amazing. Under the shade of the oak trees, it was officiated by our dear friend and incredibly talented jazz singer Kathleen Grace. She killed it. It was also so important to me that the wedding party was comfortable so we found couches, draped them with fabric, and let them get comf.
We wrote our own vows, but decided to end them with a line from When Harry Met Sally: “When you realize you want to spend the rest of your life with somebody, you want the rest of your life to start as soon as possible.”
This is my favorite photo of them all:
While our guests enjoyed cocktail hour, we were then whisked (only Erik will get that little inside joke) up to a little trailhead half a mile down the road from the venue through the dry brush of Topanga. Our photographer Oliver Barth caught some pretty amazing images. A few favorites:
We had such a great time shooting with Oliver. It was a beautiful moment in time and we’re so lucky his photos captured it all. But we were so ready to party. Here, escort cards I dip dyed with RIT (the table number was on the other side).
We collected assorted china dishes and had them set with napkins and rosemary picked from my mother’s garden.
Dinner was catered by Citron Catering. It was mostly vegetarian all in a Califrenchican (California-Mexican-French) theme. Butternut squash enchiladas, phenomenal quinoa salad, a succulent glazed salmon, mini tacos, goat cheese and grape amuse buche, and a goat cheese mixed greens salad with french vinaigrette.
People always come hungry to weddings, so I made sure that there was something ready to eat at every person’s seat as soon as they found their table.
And what better than bread? Ken at Citron had the lovely idea of branding our initials on to the baguette’s served along side lavender honey butter.
We also recorded a song and a thank you message and popped it on a CD along with 18 other favorite love songs as party favors. Guitar picks with our weddings hashtag accented each bow.
The family style was a hit. And there were SO. MANY. Leftovers.
Our good friend Kristen was sweet enough to introduce us for our first dance, a Ryan Adams tune called “When the Stars Go Blue” sung by our favorite dueting couple Sometimes We Sing Together.
But OMG, I had a wardrobe malfunction. Right in the third step of our first dance! I lost about 3 unintentional lbs the week of the wedding, meaning my A-line dress hung a little longer than intended, which meant that my foot got caught in the bustle of my dress and ripped it with every third of four steps we took in our dance.
Erik definitely froze when he heard that first rip but kept gently swaying us back and forth as I started laugh crying.We kept trying to dance our routine we had practiced, but I kept ripping my dress a little every time. I finally picked up the dress and danced holding it, still laughing and crying the entire time.
We were so grateful when the focus was turned onto our entire wedding party for the second song, and my favorite from Sometimes We Sing Together, “Long, Long Time.” I wish I could share a recording! It’s so beautiful!
Dinner. Hilarous and heartfelt toasts.
This time, my friend Bertrand of Beige Music performed “God Only Knows” by The Beach Boys for my dad’s and my dance.
Then it was Erik and his mom’s turn.
The completely amazing Patrick Park sang “Forever Young” by Bob Dylan. He is so freaking emotive, that it was so hard for everyone to not sway along and want to dance too.
Then it was Erik’s Dad’s Rock band. The Flathead Mountain Rock Band. They’ve been together for nearly 4 decades, covering the best of the 50s and 60s and some 70s too. They rocked so hard and had the entire wedding out of their seats.
Then it was time for the Horah. Make sure your chairs are pre-planned people. Our poor friends lifted us up in wrought iron chairs that might have weighed more than we did.
Then the stunning Skyler Stonestreet took the stage for some awesome pop tunes. She’s such an incredible writer and singer!
The summer we fell in love, Erik was touring with Josh in support of that album, and Josh too kindly let me tag along on a few of the East Coast tour dates. It was a blast, and it was beyond incredible to recreate that at our wedding, especially when Erik got up and took a bass solo.
Then, it was the grand finale in the form of a dessert table. My sister-in-law Sari spearheaded the family and friends homemade desserts I had envisioned. She brought to life my dream of a chocolate cake.
Three tiers. A hint of almond flavoring in yellow cake. All natural. It. was. AMAZING. I still dream about it. EVERY DAY. These girls were faking it, I ATE THAT. Basically, all of it.
Also on the table: Flourless chocolate cake (crack) from my French friend Anne, sea salted brown butter rice krispie treats (aka crack) from Jessica, gluten-free white chocolate cranberry cookies from Erik’s sister Nina, my mom’s famous banana bread, my own Nutella spiked chocolate chip cinnamon cookies.
My sister’s incredible assortment of phenomenal cookies and petite fours including white chocolate covered sea salt caramel shortbread bars, mini hand pies in apple and fig, cinnamon shortbread cookies, rose petal dandies, and probably 10,000 other beautiful and delicious treats that were a ginormous hit. And no, she’s not a professional baker. Oh yes, and although there are no photos as proof, we also had a s’mores bar complete with 10 different kinds of flavored chocolate bars because CHOCOLATE.
To our giant surprise, all of our friends surprised us with a group rendition of Elliott Smith’s “Say Yes.” It was beautiful. Such a romantically thing for all of our fabulous and talented and thoughtful musician friends to rock for us.
Paul McDonald, the incredible American Idol finalist rocked out a ridiculously amazing rendition of Gin N Juice and one of my favorite songs in the whole world All Night Long. Trumpet part (thanks Jordan Katz!) and all. Was aaaaaamazing. The night finally (awwwwwww!!!) ended with an unplugged serenade by our friend Ethan Gruska along with 5 cheese pizzas I’d ordered to greet our guests as they boarded the shuttles back to their cars.
Our photographer was gone and we were all too drunk or too tired or too busy having fun for photos. But I’ll leave with one last super romantically photo that I’ll have in my brain forever as my favorite moment from the big day.
A rundown of our vendors, musicians, and people who made our day so special.
- Dress: Les Habitudes
- Sandals: Valentino
- Earrings: Kara Ackerman
- Veil: Nuit Hiboux vintage
- Her ring: Jay Carlile
- His ring: Lori Metals
- His suit and shoes: Ted Baker
- Tie: Original Penguin
- Groomsmen’s shirts and ties: Life After Denim
- Flowers: The Paper Arum
- Makeup: Nicole Walmsley
- Hair: Natalie Vermiglio
- Catering: Citron Catering
- Photography: Oliver Barth
- Venue: Oak Creek Ranch
- SONUS Quartet
- Beige Music
- Sometimes We Sing Together
- Paul McDonald
- Josh Kelley
- Patrick Park
- Skyler Stonestreet
- Matt Mayhall
- Ricky Jackson
- Josh Dunahoo
- David Dyas
- Ethan Gruska
- Marcel Camargo
- Alan Chang
- Ryan Dilmore
- Matt Slocum
- Oliver Hild
- David Steele
- Kathleen Grace
- Jordan Katz
- Avi Zirler
- Justin Glasco