Friday, December 12, 2014

The Wedding Planning

Now that our wedding has come and gone I wanted to write about the whole planning process. 
Zach and I talked about getting married in 2014 but I was still surprised when he proposed on Christmas Eve last year. When we first starting talking about planning our wedding we knew we wanted our friends and family present and we wanted it to be an outdoor wedding. 
Luckily, our friends Tim & Chelsea were visiting last Christmas so Chelsea was able to help me with the initial planning process. 

The Venue: We thought briefly about having the wedding in Hawaii but concluded that would be more expensive, more hectic, and allow for less people to attend. We decided California was the best place to get married since most of our friends and family live there. So we started Googling "outdoor wedding venues in Southern California", Chelsea helped out a lot with the Googling process.  We loved the idea of having our wedding at the Santa Barbara zoo and even my mom was able to go to the zoo for us to get information and check out the grounds.  But in the end we thought it was a bit pricey and we didn't like that we had to use their food caterers. We also had my aunt and uncle check out a venue for us in Los Angeles but again it was too expensive.  We were not able to fly to California to check out venues so we were relying on the internet and the help of our family.
I kept coming back to this one venue, Elings Park in Santa Barbara. We loved the deck with the huge oak trees that we saw in the pictures and it was in our budget. Zach's parents were able to check out Elings Park for us and they loved it so we decided that was where we'd get married. We loved that we could have both the ceremony and reception in one place and we loved the freedom to bring in our own caterers and other vendors. We got lucky with finding Elings Park, it is a beautiful place! 

The Food: Zach told me he wanted to have the In N Out truck cater our wedding and I liked that idea, seeing as we both love In N Out and it was something different. When he looked in to having In N Out cater they told him they only went as far as Ventura county, which we were bummed about and even looked into finding a different venue (before we booked Elings Park) just so we could have In N Out be a part of our wedding.  But then we started to research food trucks in the Santa Barbara area and we came across The Burger Bus. We loved their menu selection and were happy to hear that they cater weddings so we booked them. We got to pick 6 different types of sliders for our guest to enjoy, along with sweet potato fries and Berna kindly made a variety of salads. And for dessert Zach's mom made pound cake  for our cake bar. The only gripe we had about our whole wedding was that our guest had to stand in line for get food form The Burger Bus. We thought the burgers and fries were going to be served differently so we were a little taken back when we realized people had to walk and wait in line to get the burgers, luckily they didn't seem to mind.

The Dress: Surprisingly, my least favorite part of wedding planning was finding my dress, which was weird because I always imagined how fun finding a dress would be. I think the problem was I had an idea of the type of dress I wanted but when I tried those types of dresses on they were not how I imagined and were not flattering on me. So I didn't know what kind of dress I wanted. I was thankful to have the help and support of girls at work to go with me multiple times to find a dress. The first time we went to David's Bridal I tried on the dress I eventually bought. The girls at work loved it but I was unsure, I wanted to see other dresses. We went to a couple other shops but I ended up going back to David's Bridal and getting the dress. In the end, it was the perfect dress for me!

Photography: Last August we flew to California for our friend's wedding, we had a blast and loved how their wedding pictures turned out. So we decided we wanted to book them (Mactaggart Media) to capture the day of our wedding. We love the work they did for us!

Once Zach and I started mapping out the events of our wedding day we realized we were going to spend the majority of our wedding reception taking family pictures. With 3 separate families + our wedding party to take pictures with we knew it was going to be a process. Since we had the park booked for all day we  figured the easiest thing would be to take pictures before the ceremony, also allowing us to utilize the park for more than just 4:00pm to 10:00pm. At first I was apprehensive about this idea because I wanted the first time Zach to see me on our wedding day walking down the aisle but it made sense to take pictures before the ceremony. Zach and I did our first glance photos first, then took pictures with his family, my mom's side of the family, and our wedding party. After the ceremony we took pictures with my dad's side of the family. It actually worked out very well, leaving ample time for us on the dance floor!

At first glance

 The Collins Family

 The Notz Family

The Sosebee Family 

We had a hard time choosing colors and our theme. To be honest, I didn't even know we had to have a theme and every time someone asked me what our theme was I would say, "park?"....gosh I didn't like that question!
We kept going back and forth with our colors. At first we thought we wanted neutral, soft, earthy tones but I also liked the color coral. We decided on gray as our main color because Zach said he wanted the guys to wear gray dress pants. Once we knew the main color for our wedding party we decided we liked the idea of our wedding party picking out their own attire, especially for the girls, I loved that they choose their own style of dress. I really liked the thought of gray and coral together so we decided coral would be our accent color.  We found coral tutus and bow ties for the nieces and nephews and my bridesmaid wear coral shoes. We thought about having the groomsmen wear coral bowties as well but decided to stick to back ties.
I was not picky when it came to flowers, in fact, I knew for years I wanted to make my own bouquets and table arrangements. It's just crazy to me how much flower bouquets and arrangements cost. My plan was to get my flowers from Costco the day before our wedding and make all the arrangements and my plan work out well, also thank you to my bridesmaids for helping me tackle that project.
The colors came together nicely. I liked that it was all a little different but seemed to blend well together.

 Such fun people!

 The littles had fun on the dance floor

 Again I was not picky about flowers or colors. 

After seeing the pictures of the big oak trees cover the deck I knew I wanted banners hung from the trees. My bridesmaids were awesome and got all the material and made the banners. I think they added a lot of character.
I also knew I wanted signs placed around the park, which was fun to make.
Zach and I thought it would be fun to have a photo booth since those are very popular at weddings but we could not bring ourselves to pay $500-$800 for 2 hours of picture taking. I found a giant cut out polaroid on Pinterest and asked Zach's (now mine) talented sister-in-law, Vanessa if she could make one for our wedding. It was perfect and our guest had a blast taking fun pictures.

Loved the banners!

All of our planning came together so nicely.
We couldn't have asked for a better day! Our wedding was perfect!

1 comment:

  1. How wonderful post!! The wedding venue you have selected is just awesome guys!! I am also planning to book this type of decent San Diego Wedding venues for my dream wedding. Any ways, congratulations for your wedding!!