Remember how my sister’s wedding was published in the spring/summer issue of Martha Stewart Weddings magazine??  Well today we are thrilled that a lot more of its gorgeous, vibrant, citrus-hued details are featured on Style Me Pretty!  We couldn’t be more excited about this extra exposure and are so thankful to Abby for sharing it with her readers!

I have been chomping at the bit to share more about her wedding with you — from the design process to the fine point details.  I look forward to highlighting some of those items in coming posts!  Today, it is going to be a lot of eye candy.  Lots and lots of scrumptious eye candy.  If you love photos of people in love, gorgeous florals and pretty settings, you are in for a treat.  🙂  Thank you (again and again!) to my dear friend Ryan Ray, who perfectly captured the beauty and emotion of the day.

Here’s my little write-up, for those of you interested in the background.  I promise not to mind if you simply skip to the photos!!  😉

Anna and Sean are an extra-special couple to me, because Anna is my beloved younger sister!  It was a complete delight to plan and design her intimate Ojai wedding to Sean, my now-brother-in-law.  The two of them had been friends in college years ago, and I remember her telling me about her freckled crush back then.  They reunited in the fall of 2011 and knew right away that it was “it.”  Only a few months later, they were engaged and we began planning their springtime wedding!

do you see that tear that ryan captured??!

They decided early on that they wanted to have a semi-destination wedding: a celebration that was close enough to their native Los Angeles for easy guest travel, but unique enough to feel like a getaway.  They landed on the charming hillside town of Ojai, known for an excellent farmer’s market, quaint shops, and organic produce.  Ojai is also famous for their dramatic pink-tinged sunsets, created when the sun is setting across the Topatopa Bluffs.  Anna and Sean selected the fabulous Ojai Valley Inn and Spa as the setting for their nuptials because it is the perfect balance of luxury and that signature Ojai charm.  The sprawling property features an incredible full-service spa and wellness center, great golf (Erik may or may not have gone everyday that we were there!), meandering bike baths, beautiful gardens and fabulous dining.  Most of the wedding guests ended up staying with us at the property and I think I speak for everyone when I say no one was ready to leave!

Anna envisioned a small, intimate wedding set in the Herb Garden, where they would exchange vows and then dine al fresco under a gorgeous vine-covered pergola.  She and Sean drew up a guestlist of closest family and friends, and then really gave me the reins to create the beautiful day for them.  I was completely ecstatic to run with my vision for their wedding; I can’t tell you how fun it is to plan a wedding for your sister, a person you know so well!  Anna has worked with me planning and designing weddings for years, so I had picked up on her style over time.  Anna has a vibrant and vivacious personality, so I knew that we wanted to embrace a bright and cheery palette for the wedding.  She completely entrusted me with most of the details, which allowed me to really get creative.  We began with a lovely range of citrus-inspired hues: coral, raspberry, tangerine and yellow.  Ojai, the setting of the celebration, is known for their citrus (especially their pixie tangerines — in season now!), so I wanted to reference that in the design of the wedding.  I enlisted talented illustrator and graphic designer Julie Song, of Julie Song Ink, to create a beautiful watercolor stationery suite for their invitations.  She incorporated images of lemons, coral charm peonies, sunflowers (a nod to Anna’s favorite bloom) and of course the magnificent pink-tinged Ojai sunsets in her pieces.  The hand-lettering and whimsical feel of the stationery really set the tone for the playful look of the wedding.

Guests arrived at the Herb Garden for the ceremony, and discovered an enchanting set up of vintage settees and sofas in lieu of traditional chair seating.  With the gorgeous inventory of vintage furniture of {found} vintage rentals, we were able to design a much cozier and elegant space for exchanging vows.  Each settee was unique, but the arrangement felt cohesive in feel, with lots of feminine and neutral colors, luxe fabrics like velvet and linen, and button-tufting and gilded details.  Small side tables were placed amongst the upholstered seating for guests to set down their watermelon lemonades once the ceremony was underway.  In keeping with the residential feel, a stunning vintage mantel from {found} was the focal point of the ceremony, covered with framed photos of the couple and copious candlelight, flowers, and garland from Heavenly Blooms.  With such an intimately-sized group, it felt like a gathering at someone’s home.

A vintage vanity was used as a guest sign-in station, and guests tucked handwritten well wishes into the drawers.  A welcome beverage station was decked out with stunning citrus topiaries and featured fresh watermelon lemonade, iced tea and citrus & cucumber water.  Classical guitarist Brandt Jacobus played in the background, completing the idyllic scene.

There ceremony was a traditional Christian ceremony, and the bridal party was made up of only siblings: me and Sean’s brother.  I walked in with my husband and 3-month-old daughter (their new niece!) and Anna was escorted in by my mom and stepfather.  Brandt played Beatles songs including “Across the Universe” and “Here Comes the Sun” for the processional.  There were joyful tears shed as they exchanged vows, and they recessed to “Better Together” by Jack Johnson, also performed by the guitarist.

Cocktail hour took place on a lower lawn where guests could enjoy a phenomenal spread of California artisan cheeses, truffle honey, local citrus chutneys, nuts and more.  Passed hors d’oeuvres included some of Anna and Sean’s favorite treats, including bacon-wrapped dates stuffed with gorgonzola and double smoked bacon-wrapped scallops with maple glaze (sensing a trend?).  Bocce ball and croquet were also set up for guests to enjoy as the sun slipped behind the mountains for that magical “pink moment.”

As the sun set, guests were invited back up to the garden underneath the long covered portico.  We had a local singer and guitarist, Ray Fortune, play for this portion of the evening.  His beautiful voice was the perfect accompaniment to the setting we created.  All 39 guests were seated a long table (created using multiple vintage dining tables) in an eclectic mix of upholstered and bistro-style vintage chairs.  Overhead, delicate crepe paper blooms (which I handmade) were strung alongside glass spheres sparkling with light.  The scene was positively enchanting.  A citrus “chandelier” was suspended over the cake at one end of the portico, and the bar was placed at the opposite end.

The magnificent table was overflowing with stunning floral arrangements nestled in pressed glass goblets and footed bowls.  Tangerines and lemons were nestled amongst peonies, amaryllis, garden roses, bougainvillea, craspedia and more.  The look was lush and abundant, feminine and romantic, yet also youthful and fresh.  Of course, tons of candlelight added drama and mood to the table.  The entire setting was sparkling!  Placesettings featured the white-on-white lacy designs of gorgeous Spode Jewel china, via Casa de Perrin tabletop rentals, as well as their clear pressed glassware.  Guests found their assigned seats via dainty paper “lemon slices” affixed to each wine glass like a little garnish.  Cherry yellow and white patterned napkins from La Tavola added a touch of fun.  Guests also discovered an amazing menu atop their plates.  I teamed up once again with Julie Song on these labors of love.  Her charming illustrations and hand-lettering were designed in a menu that was over 2′ long printed on crisp white linen.  I handcut each menu and then sewed them along the top to roll up as a scroll on porcelain branches (actually drink stirrers I repurposed from BHLDN!).  I hand-dyed lace trim as a tie to each scrolled menu.  I loved hearing the gasps of delight as each guests unfurled their scrolls at the dining table, stunned at the dramatic display of the feast to come!  The memorable meal included a crab and corn chowder with green chile corn fritters, a composed tomato and burrata salad, merlot braised short ribs with garlicky prawns, a berry trifle and a delectable wedding cake made with Ojai’s signature pixie tangerines.

The meal was punctuated by a welcome by our stepfather, a prayer by my husband, Erik, and toasts by both siblings (me and Brian).  Anna and Sean shared a simple first dance to Ray Fortune’s creative rendition of “Honeybee” by Blake Shelton.  After the meal, guests lingered over coffee and cake, enjoying conversation and laughter with one another in the magical setting.  It was a natural ending to a truly impeccable day.  I remember stepping back and feeling so overwhelmed with the beauty of what I saw.  The setting was dripping in details and aesthetic beauty, but it also radiated with the unspeakable joy of the newlyweds and their loved ones.  The night was unforgettable in every way, and I am so grateful I could be a part of creating it for my darling sis!


Location, Catering, and Cake: Ojai Valley Inn & Spa  – Sarah in catering is AMAZING.
Event Planning and Design: Events of Love and Splendor
Photography: Ryan Ray  – our talented and dear friend, who is more like family to me!
Flowers: Heavenly Blooms  – Jaclyne always goes way way above and beyond!
Rentals: Found Vintage Rentals  – Jeni’s beautiful furniture set the stage.  Her styling is impeccable!
Tabletop Rentals: Casa de Perrin  – CdP’s wares made the tabletops shine.  I wish every meal was served on their beautiful china, and every toast made with their gorgeous glasses!
Stationery, Menu, and Calligraphy: Julie Song Ink  – such a sweetheart and a brilliant artist!
Videography: Elysium Productions – Julie shot my wedding, my mom’s wedding, and now Anna’s wedding!  The circle is complete!
Music: Brandt Jacobus and Ray Fortune  – two people you NEED to hire.
Linens: La Tavola Linen  – always my pick for lovely linens!
Hair and Makeup: Nicole Deanne  – our cherished friend helped us look our best!  Loved her being there on the big day!!

Hope you guys enjoyed this special & more detailed look at such a special day for my family.  If you have any questions, let me know!  See you all very soon — enjoy your Thursday!!  xoxo, Angel

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Comments (8)

  1. vivian: April 4, 2013

    so gorgeous! congrats!

  2. admin: April 5, 2013

    thank you sweet vivian!!

  3. Ryan Ray: April 5, 2013

    You are a gem! So thankful for your amazing work. Without a doubt, my favorite person to work with!

  4. admin: April 5, 2013

    awww!! our entire family is so incredibly grateful for you and the gift you gave us with these images. and obviously, we make a killer team!!! 🙂

  5. Anna: April 5, 2013

    Thank you so much for all of your hard work and creativity to make our day perfect. Hands down, your best work! 😉

    Sean and I seriously talk about how awesome our wedding was all the time. Thank you sister!

  6. TJ: April 12, 2013

    Absolutely love all of these final details! What a gorgeous couple and a gorgeous wedding!
    xo TJ

  7. Rachel (heart of light): April 17, 2013

    Everything is so beautiful and all the love shines through! Gorgeous work, Angel, and congratulations to Anna and Sean!

  8. Alissa: February 18, 2016

    What a beautiful day! We loved the Oh Hi, Ojai canvas totes they did and are getting married at OVIS in May – did you guys have those custom made or had you found them somewhere? Thanks so much, looks like an absolutely magical wedding!

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