Bold brights and blues – Josh and Carol’s California vintage-inspired “oldfangled adventure” barn wedding

It’s Monday again and welcome to another busy week on the new look Under the Vintage Veil. Today we have the great pleasure of featuring something a bit different from across the pond. We love Josh and Carol’s bright, bold and creative barn wedding, especially the way the bridal party is coordinated, beautiful paper crafts and a stunning bride in a birdcage veil! The wedding was submitted by Jonathan at Bluephoto (who the couple described as “an absolute dream to work with”), who also made this adorable video as he was shooting their wedding, which really brings the story to life! As you know, we like to let the bride do the talking, so here’s Carol to tell you all about her big day.

“Josh and I have been together for seven years, but we met over ten years ago in college. As a couple, we spend most of our time together laughing, or trying to make the other person laugh.  There are so many things we love about each other, but it all boils down to our sense of humour.

The theme of our wedding evolved many times over the wedding planning year, eventually landing on “oldfangled adventure” after our save-the-dates and invites inadvertently pointed us right to it.  It just took off from there!  Above all themes and colour schemes, we just wanted our wedding to be as personal as possible.

We ended up doing a mixture of everything (DIY, enlisting friends, Etsy, flea markets, and eBay) depending on the financial and logistical benefits. Some things we DIY’d completely, seeking out our friends’ talents: Our beer-savvy pals brewed a refreshing blackberry wheat beer for cocktail hour, our friend Jessica rigged my birdcage veil with blue French netting she found on Etsy, and our crafty maid of honour, Elena crafted the pinwheels for the barn decorations.  Our dear friend Syd officiated.  Our lovely friend Maggie did hair and make-up.  Our handy friend Ryan built (and transported and reassembled) our wedding arch. Josh and I hand-made the favours, escort cards, table markers, cake topper, programs, and welcome gift bags.

We braved Costco and Smart & Final for things outside of our vendor agreements (booze, mason jars, welcome gift bag contents). We foraged flea markets for all the big mason jar vases, the old postcards for the guestbook, and any other props & “set dressing”.

In the end, some things were best left to the professionals.  Friends and family kept offering to take care of the flowers, but I didn’t want them to worry about buying, arranging, transporting, and storing fresh flowers when they should just be enjoying the day with us.  Instead, I worked with a local florist to pare down the order to the essentials and she knew exactly what I wanted.  Work with your vendors to find ways to save money!

Our caterers, New West, were the most important and our most loved.  Food was a big priority for us.  We wanted our guests to eat what we enjoy in CA: fresh, local, organic, healthy food.  Our caterers were a perfect fit for us, like-minded in so many ways, and the food was A-M-A-Z-I-N-G!  Our guests were pleasantly full & ready to dance, despite the summer heat.

A few of our favourite wedding details: Our nephew and ring-bearer, Luke, carried the small antique chest up the aisle that Josh had used when he proposed.  Josh’s younger brother read the lyrics to “The Book of Love” by the Magnetic Fields out of a large, unwieldy book that Josh made. We chose an instrumental arrangement of “Do You Realize??” by The Flaming Lips as our processional, and my cousin Becca sang along with the string quartet playing “This Will Be Our Year” by The Zombies for our recessional– songs that are very close to our hearts.  All the bridesmaids drank their wine from the flowery glass goblets they purchased on the bachelorette weekend at The Madonna Inn in San Luis Obispo.

We had so many moving moments, but I think the speeches from Josh’s brother Matt and my best friend Elena snuck up on both of us– they both spoke from the heart and captivated the whole room. I’m still receiving compliments on their behalf!

As a commercial production coordinator, I’m used to dealing with the challenges of a location.  The raw space of the barn & vineyard– no potable water, no restrooms, barely any lighting– didn’t scare me away. But I didn’t want to work on the big day!  We hired day-of coordinators who knew the venue and local vendors, and guided us along the way.  Brides & Grooms: if you are having an even semi-traditional wedding, you need a day-of coordinator, at the very least.  It’s money you will never regret spending, if you choose wisely.

If I could go back in time and do things differently, I would have had someone undo the train on my gown at some point.  No one remembered and no one noticed, but still.  I never undid my train!  That is literally the only thing I would have changed about the day.

The best advice we have for brides and grooms is what you do end up making yourself: Buy a font or two and use it throughout!  Design a logo and get a stamp made! Search for online deals, but beware of those shipping charges (glass is heavy)! DIY things that can be flipped or repurposed once you’re married.  Most importantly, give yourself plenty of time for any project you plan, and space them out so you don’t panic.

The point of all this DIY stuff is supposed to be fun & exciting, not stressful or a money-suck.  Make what makes sense, have your friends help if they are willing and able, buy stuff online, rent the rest– don’t stress.  Your wedding will be unforgettable no matter what.”

Images © 2012 Bluephoto

The Credits 

Venue: Coquelicot Vineyards
Photographer: Bluephoto
Bride’s dress, accessories and shoes: Wedding Dress: Jenny Yoo;Veil: Etsy shop Birdcage Supply; Necklace: Etsy shop Topiary Designs; Hair Clip: Etsy shop Dana Castle; Shoes: J Crew
Bridesmaids’ dresses & accessories: Bridesmaids’ Dresses: various – J Crew, mostly; Bridesmaids rings: Etsy shop Starlight Woods
Groom’s outfit: Groom’s suit: J Crew; Groom’s shirt: J. Hilburn; Groom’s shoes: Allen Edmonds
Groomsmens’ / ushers’ outfits:
Groomsmen Bow Ties: Beau Ties Ltd.
Cars: Classic Motoring Car Rentals
Florist: Renae’s Bouquet
Event Coordinator: Special Occasions
Lighting: Ambient Events
Rentals: Elite Events
DIY Resources: Long Beach flea market, Pasadena City College flea market, Rose Bowl Flea Market, downtown LA’s Fashion District, eBay, Michael’s, Craigslist, Costco, Smart & Final, Amazon.com, yard sales
Hair & make up: Maggie Spalding (friend of the bride & groom)
Cake: Kristin Kaz (friend of the bride & groom)
Catering: New West Catering
Beer: Wilson Hall
Dessert: Coolhaus Catering
Stationery: Monica Katzenell (friend of the couple)
Band / DJ: Ceremony musicians: assembled by the arranger
Arrangement: Eric Gorfain ; DJ: Alex at AMS
Officiant: Syd 

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