On the west coast of USA in San Diego there is a gorgeous seaside town called La Jolla. A pretty locale that is ideal for a wedding – just like this beautiful destination wedding by Melissa McLure Photography. It’s stylish, it’s understated and it has us dreaming of romantic sunsets and walks along the shore. I’ll leave the rest to beautiful bride Natalie, who shares with us all the lovely details below. Enjoy the sunshine lovelies….
FROM THE BRIDE:
Describe your proposal?
David proposed on a Friday evening in September, under a tree in Central park. Very low key, but just right!
What was your wedding vision?
I have never really been the girl/woman with a wedding vision. The things that mattered to me (and us) were that people felt comfortable (not stuffy) and they were able to enjoy good food, wine and dance the night away and simply celebrate with us.
One thing I remember thinking was that I didn’t want really BIG centerpieces because I hate when I cannot see someone across the table at wedding due to some big monstrosity (not to say they are not beautiful, just not my style).
Having some part of the wedding outside seemed natural, which is a big reason David and I didn’t get married in NYC (where we live). We wanted to have the beauty of La Jolla shores be part of the “decoration.”
Tell us about your planning details:
The ceremony and reception was at Scripps Forum in La Jolla (the ceremony was on the grass overlooking the water and for the cocktail hour we used the space between the grass and Forum. The dinner reception inside the Forum)
I am not sure if I had a “theme” per se, but wanted things to look classy and clean (no clutter of “stuff”)
Green is my favorite color, so it seemed natural to myself and my friends that this would be one of the colors (mint/sea foam). Ultimately it was not, I just seemed to gravitate to more navy/midnight blues.
I started with what I wanted to my bridesmaids to wear – they all have beautiful olive skin so I knew they would look good in just about anything (unlike me!) – and with the time of year being February I thought the midnight blue dresses would look so pretty against the green grass and ocean.
I always knew that tulips would be the flower, they have always been my favorite, particularly the peach ones, which go so well with the midnight blue!
Describe your wedding style:
I got my dress at Nicole Miller (great recommendation from a bridesmaid and wonderful friend who was married not too long before David and I, Melissa shot their wedding as well, that is how we met her).
I think the name of the dress is the Dakota (ivory, strapless, sweetheart, modified mermaid with a mini train). I LOVED this dress! I had a sash made at M & J trimmings in the city (NYC) in a champagne color and some asymmetrical jewel/stone things (obviously I am not good at this stuff). The groomsmen wore grey kingston suites from Friar Tus shop. Our ring bearer wore the same and my flower girl (my niece) picked out her dress with Mom’s help.
And your wedding details?
We didn’t have a wedding cake, only a topper for cake cutting purposes from VG donut and bakery in Solana Beach. Instead our caterer (Crowne Point Catering) put together an awesome dessert station of white chocolate bread pudding, brownies, cheese cake bars, etc. We didn’t do wedding favors, but my Mom did put together little bags for hotel guests (the majority of our guests flew in from various places around the world!) No boutonnieres for the groomsmen, only for my husband and our ring bearer.
Did you include any DIY or personalized details?
We made our place cards with various toys from Paper Source (one opened up about 4 blocks away from us during the wedding planning process, it was awesome). I can actually say that my husband knows how to use an embosser.
David also named the signature cocktail, “Hancocktail” he was very proud of this contribution. A friend of mine had a great idea for a guest book using polaroid pictures. We bought a basic guest book from Paper source, I placed in stickers that hold the polaroids in place. Then guests took pictures of themselves during the cocktail hour and signed somewhere in the book with advise for us. We placed their picture next to their message and now have a snap shot of most guests from our wedding. It is pretty great!
Was there anything that made your wedding unique?
My husband is South African, I am from California and we live in NYC. We wanted each place to be represented, so how better than through alcohol. We had wines from both California and South Africa and our signature cocktail was a Manhattan. Also, in South Africa it is traditional for a close friend of the groom to MC the event. Our very good friend Dean (who flew all the way from Cape Town!) MC’d the night and made it so personal and special.
What was your biggest challenge?
Planning a wedding from the other side of the country is not ideal, but I must say having my Mom and Erin Donoghue (my wedding planner and the lil-sis of one of my closest friends and bridesmaids), made it all very possible and mostly stress-free.
What were your favorite moments?
So hard to choose because it honestly was the best weekend of my life!
Walking down the aisle with my dad, seeing all these people I loved and then seeing my almost-husband, all with the ocean behind them was pretty incredible!
David and I’s first glance (or look, I can’t remember), was so so so special and emotional and the best decision we made. It was supposed to be just us (and Melissa), but we looked over at one point and saw all the groomsmen in one of the hotel rooms peeking out, very sweet.
David’s speech at the wedding (also customary in South Africa, the groom has the main speech). I felt very lucky to have just married him!
Have to include a dancing thing here, I LOVE to dance and I LOVE karaoke. There are endless pictures of me with the DJ’s microphone and doing the air guitar, but I loved singing at the top of my lungs surrounded by awesome friends and family to the quintessential “Don’t stop believing” by Journey, cheesy, but highly recommended at any wedding.
Photography: Melissa McLure Photography / Hair Stylist: BeautyEverAfter / Event Planner: Your Event by Erin /Floral Designer: Franco’s Flowers / Cake Designer: VG Donut & Bakery / DJ: Sound Prodigy / Makeup Artist: ACMakeup / Event Venue: Scripps Seaside Forum / Submitted via Two Bright Lights