View Posts By:




Classic English Wedding at the Bodleian Library

While she originally had her sights set on a NYC rooftop wedding, it was the beauty of Oxford, England that sent this bride’s wedding plans for a complete and total loop. But with its stunning architecture and old-world charm, it’s all too easy to see why. The fabulous Stephanie Swann captured the day from start to finish you can click right here for sooooo much more!


From the Bride… With half our guests coming from a different country, we wanted our wedding to be special. NYC was the obvious choice for me being American and having lived there for 10 years. I had images of a rooftop reception with skyline views and as we visited locations across London, none seemed to stack up to my NYC dream.

Then we went to Oxford, my husband’s hometown. I was completely blown away at how incredibly beautiful the city is, and its ability to transport you through time to a place long past with its architecture and gardens. The Bodleian Library was nestled in the middle of it all, one of the oldest in Europe, with some of the most stunning architecture I have seen. It only took a minute to decide this was where we wanted to celebrate with our closest friends and family.

It was important to us to accentuate the beauty of the city so we chose a classic and timeless color palette including grey, pale yellow and creams that would compliment the surrounding architecture. Keeping with British tradition, the gentlemen wore morning suits and we held a champagne only reception (cocktail hour). But it was also important that we ensured we had some elements of New York represented. I found my dress in NY and my parents had images of vintage New York and London maps made into bookmarks for each guest.

We wanted an outdoor element to our wedding and since this can be tough in the UK, we opted to risk for a reception in the courtyard of the library before heading in for the wedding breakfast. It paid off and we enjoyed the sunshine to the sounds of a jazz trio our friends found performing in a local pub after photos in the gardens of one of the local colleges.

Including our family in our creative process was very important. Chris and I designed the stationary ourselves, my father and I constructed each program, our brother-in-law designed and made our gorgeous wedding cake and Chris’s parents and sister helped source and cover the books used as part of the table centerpieces. Looking back, I wouldn’t change a thing – we live in London, this is our home and part of who we are. I’m so glad we got to share our big day with our closets friends and family in such a special, beautiful place.

What advice could I give to future brides? Don’t be afraid to consider something not in your plan. The choices I made, from the location to my dress were so different from what I thought I originally wanted and I wouldn’t change them for the world. Be open to ideas and go with your heart! Get creative and include a little DIY no matter your budget – it’s nice to have everything done for you, but those special touches make the day extra special and include your friends and family in one of the important days of your life.

If your budget allows, I would also highly recommend a day-of coordinator. Our venue was very strict as it’s open to public and without the team we would have been at a loss. Not having to worry about anything the day of made my experience with the bridesmaids and mother in the morning so much more relaxing.

Photography: Stephanie Swann Weddings | Wedding Dress: Ulla Maier | Florist: Fabulous Flowers | Cake: Christopher's Brother-in-law | Stationery: Kenny McLaren | Ceremony Venue: The Oratory | Reception Venue: Bodleian Library | Shoes: Brian Atwood | Bridesmaids Dresses: Monique Lhuillier | Catering: Tapenade | Wedding Planner: Isobel Lamplough – Isobel Weddings | Hair Stylist: Katie R-Scott | Car Hire: Henley Classic Car Hire | Clutch Bag: Anya Hindmarch | DJ Entertainment: Wedding Smashers | Dance Floor And Lighting : ACDisco | Diamond Stud Earrings: Gift From Christopher To Ashley | Grey Necklace: Massimo Dutti | Groom's Morning Suit : Cad And The Dandy | Make Up Artist: Georgina Pelosi | Pendant Earrings: Alexis Bittar | Wedding/Engagement Rings: DeBeers

Monique Lhuillier is a member of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here.
From the pages of the
{ The latest from our most exclusive, hand-picked list of vendors }
Spring Blooms That Inspire

It never fails, when April rolls around we start craving those spring blooms like you wouldn’t believe. We have a feeling we aren’t alone there. And with Easter right around the corner and Passover in full swing, we thought we would gather up some of our favorite spring blooms to help inspire your arrangements.

Spring Blooms That Inspire
View Slideshow
Pastel Colored Holman Ranch Affair

With Spring in full swing and Easter just around the corner, a wedding infused with the prettiest of pastels is about as timely as you can get. Photographed beautifully by Delbarr Moradi with design by Soiree By Simone Lennon and flowers by Floral Theory, this puppy is a sea of elegant tables, flowers in the softest shades of color, lovely gold details sprinkled throughout and all tucked inside dreamy Holman Ranch. See even more here.


From Simone Lennon… Upon the first meeting with Jordan and Chris, I knew their wedding was going to be a fete to remember. When a couple possesses a special combination of sophistication, style and grace, as they do, it makes my job as a wedding planner simple – to create a simply stunning affair that represents the things they love most for the people whom they love most. So, that’s what we did.

Jordan and Chris selected Holman Ranch in Carmel Valley as their venue which turned out to be the perfect place to bring their vision of a refined elegant affair in the wine country to life. Holman Ranch is naturally beautiful so our vision was not to recreate a theme or environment, but more to enhance the already stunning attributes the ranch is known for.

We selected a color palette of ivory, sage and blush with a touch of gold. Jordan loved romantic elements so we used a lot of neutral fabrics and muted toned blossoms to keep the design ethereal and soft. We also found ways to incorporate a touch of gold in her paper goods, chargers and flatware to add a bit glamour without it feeling too over-the-top and bold.

For the ceremony, we enhanced the gorgeous view by using art deco inspired gold chairs with ivory cushions and a simple swag of ivory tulle on the back row to add movement. The ceremony aisle was densely covered in a mix of ivory flower petals and big blossoms to add texture and depth leading up to the ceremony overlook. Jordan wore an ivory lace Enzoani trumpet gown and Chris in a black Tom Ford suit, stood together against the backdrop of the Santa Lucia Mountains and exchanged their sweet vows in front of 140 guests.

After the ceremony, guests enjoyed a lively cocktail hour featuring imported charcuterie, cheeses and small bites.

The dinner reception kicked off in style with a double champagne sabering by two master sommeliers who poured each vintage with showmanship for each delicious course. Guests dined on a family style dinner of roasted prawns, Porterhouse steaks, Mac n’ Cheese, Heirloom tomato salad and rainbow root vegetables.

At sunset, guests moved to the rustic Carriage House where they were served a post-dinner pour of a rare bottle of 1986 Chåteau d’Yquem  which we presented on a gorgeous display with crystal flutes and vintage wine crates.

After a heartfelt speech by our couple, guests ate an array of desserts and watched as Jordan and Chris danced for the first time as husband and bride to Tony Bennett’s ”The Best is Yet to Come”.

It was an exceptional evening with two of the most deserving couples I’ve had a chance to work with.

Photography: Delbarr Moradi Photography | Wedding Dress: Dakota By Enzoani Via Jin Wang Bridal | Floral Design: Floral Theory | Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Bridesmaids Dresses: Dessy | Catering: A Taste Of Elegance | DJ: Marty Satow | Groom's Suit: Tom Ford | Bride's Diamond Suite + Engagement & Wedding Band: Fourtane Jewelers | Ceremony & Reception : Holman Ranch | Groom's Wedding Band: Fourtane Jewelers | Invitations & Day Of Paper Goods: Obligation Letter Press Via Union Street Papery | Linens: La Tavola | Master Sommelier Team: Master Somm Catherine Fallis & Master Somm David Glancy | Mirror Seating Chart: Mariko Giverink, Bee Curious Designs | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Transportation: Main Event | Venue: Holman Ranch | Wedding Planning & Event Design: Simone Lennon: Soiree By Simone Lennon

Alfred Sung, Dessy Collection and Dessy Flower Girls are members of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here. La Tavola Fine Linen Rental, Holman Ranch, Delbarr Moradi Photography and Fourtane are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
La Tavola Fine Linen Rental

Holman Ranch

Delbarr Moradi Photography


Classic Elegance Inspiration at the Santa Barbara Club

Classic weddings are my kryptonite. I adore their timeless style and swoon over their sentimental details. So if you happen to be a planning a wedding where tradition reigns supreme, this shoot beautifully captured by Patrick Moyer and designed by Armando Martinez of Alegria By Design will have you jumping for joy. It’s ridiculously perfect from start to finish, and you can see even more here.

From Armando Martinez For Alegria By Design …Our location and inspiration for this year’s “Spring Bride” shoot was the historic Santa Barbara Club. Formally established in 1892, it is the oldest Club in Santa Barbara and is believed to be the oldest social Club between San Francisco and Los Angeles. The two-story Edwardian clubhouse build in 1904 with its rich history and tradition offered the perfect backdrop to this year’s shoot, a nod to the neo-preppy.

For our girl it’s all about family, tradition and of course grandmother’s silver or perhaps an updated engagement ring crafted from a family heirloom. She always looks back for inspiration but is sure of her choices, stepping confidently towards the future. The updated classic is definitive, her signature look. 

Photography: Patrick Moyer | Floral Design: Anna Le Pley Taylor | Cake: Solvang Bakery | Stationery: Honey Paper | Jewelry: Bryant & Sons Jewelers | Hair: Brianna Stewart | Calligraphy: Leslee Sipress | China & Silverware: Santa Barbara Wedding Style | Cigar Bar: Cigar Empire | Custom Gown: Veronique Coleccion | Fur & Dress Two: The White Peacock | Horse: White Horse Carriage Co. | Location: Santa Barbara Club | Makeup: Tomiko Taft | Models : Hello Gorgeous Models | Planning & Art Direction: Armando Martinez For Alegria By Design | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Shoes & Accessories : Saks 5th Avenue | Tasting Bar: Cutler’s Artisan Spirits | Tuxedos : Mission Tuxedo

Alegria by Design and Pat Moyer Photography are members of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
Alegria by Design

Patrick Moyer Photography