We are oh-so-excited to bring you this wedding from Mandilynn Photography, Evoke Event Design & Coordination, and CozyPosies, with its abundance of personal touches and DIY details. Oh, and you see that fantastic “you’re my greatest adventure” sign? It’s up for grabs in Recycle Your Wedding, so make sure you check it out!
From the bride, Lindsey: Tradition, it is something that we thought about with good intentions. When we first got engaged it was all — Which song will we walk down the aisle to? Will we get married in the church his parents did? What will be my something old, something new and something blue? Chris and I gave these traditional thoughts an enormous effort, but just a few weeks in to being engaged we simply gave up. We made a very early decision to throw all “tradition” out the window. In making this decision and speaking it out loud to family and friends, something amazing happened. No one had make or break demands or expectations! We were left to plan a celebration that was utterly and completely us. Fast forward to the week of our wedding. We are in Palm Springs, at my parents house organizing bolts of burlap, DIY table numbers, hand-painted directional signs, crafted paper mobiles and shapes, hand-etched glasses, hand-sewed napkins in different geometric patterns, programs and menus (designed by myself), props we had collected, 100 14″ platters (that we had to buy in order to serve our menu family style), etc into boxes with photographs of their contents, itemized lists and renderings taped to the outside. On top of all that we are packing my parents entire outdoor living room into an 18′ U-Haul and driving 2 hours west to Carlsbad.
Bouquet recipe: Pink peonies, white ranunculus, blush spray roses, coral dahlias, billy balls, mini succulents, viburnum, green hypericum, dusty miller, and wax flower (pink & white) wrapped with burlap, lace and twine.
We arrived in Carlsbad with what felt like (and very well might have been) an entire 2 bedroom apartment. Fortunate for us, Levyland Estate was ours for the entire week. We choose Levyland Estate in Carlsbad for two reasons. The first being I wanted a garden wedding and my fiancé a beach wedding. Marriage is about compromise right? The second reason was I wanted to choose my vendors and most importantly not have a 11 pm shut down time. The week at Levyland Estate was a tad un-traditional. We took the “engagement photos” we didn’t deem necessary for anything, but to have some really nice photos of ourselves. We went on a craft beer tour the day before our wedding with 25 of our closest friends and family members, including my 87 year old grandma and great aunt. The week was perfect and the weather was so typically Southern California.
We kicked off the night, not with a reception line or a grand entrance, but with my family of 4 and Chris’ family of 4 (bridal party + parents) walking around to each table (8 people) and giving cheers to all of guests. A perfect sentiment for us as all of them were holding the the glasses that we had hand-etched with “cheers” in six different languages, the Thanksgiving before. The cheers brought a roar to each table and an excitement from the ones to come. As we finished the last cheers, the dinner began to be served. The gastro-truck caterer I choose to fulfill my dreams of a family style meal, knocked it out of the park. Guests dug in like they would at home. Holding platters for one another, serving the heavy entrees to each person before themselves with “oohs” and “ahhs” after every bite.
With dinner coming to a close the slow motion video booth became an instant hit. We threw decks of cards in the air, pop balloons with hand folded paper, punches were thrown, hair was tossed and kisses were had. We skipped all traditional dances, first dance included, and started the dancing off by inviting our families to hit the dance floor together. Our craft beer was drunk, the dessert table of cupcakes and signature smore’s was devoured and to top the night off guests enjoyed a taco cart complete with hand-made tortillas. The party continued late into the night with absolutely no cut off time and Chris & I went to bed early in the morning — simply glowing. It was ultimately a celebration for the books.
Any advice for couples planning their weddings now? 1. From the VERY beginning decide on the 3 things that are most important to each of you. For me it was food, venue and freedom — to choose any vendor I wanted. For Chris, it was to write the ceremony & vows ourselves, to have some photos taken on the beach and the alcohol. Then we went to each family and ask if they had any expectations or musts that you should consider when planning. For our families it was that my mother wanted to give me away with my father, my dad wanted to give his speech/toast first. Having these conversations and voicing the things that are most important to you before you get too deep into the planning is crucial. 2. This was a request from my father that I think I will tell every bride that is planning a wedding. Choose 3 words that you want to show up on your wedding day. For me I choose relaxed, organized and flippin’ fun. With those words in mind I planned every minor detail and executed a fantastic wedding.
I think this was one of the hardest decisions when planning this wedding. I must have listened to 1000 songs and searched, what felt like the entire web, for things that made sense. We didn’t have any first dances or father/daughter dances so I was one hundred percent focused on the ceremony and here is what came out of it…
Guest Seating: “If Not For You,” Bob Dylan; “Better Together,” Jack Johnson; “Yours Forever,” Generationals; “I Found You,” Alabama Shakes; “On Top of the World,” Imagine Dragons; “Ho Hey,” The Lumineers; “I Would Do Anything For You,” Foster the People; “Flower in Your Hair,” The Lumineers
Groom’s Processional: “Saw You First,” Givers
Bride’s Processional: “First Day of My Life,” Bright Eyes
Recessional: “You Make Me,” Avicii
Wedding Location: Carlsbad, CA / Photographer: Mandilynn Photography / Event Design and Planning: Bride / Day-Of Coordination: Evoke Event Design & Coordination / Flowers: CozyPosies / Venue: Levyland Estate / Wedding Dress: BHLDN “Laverne” / Bride’s Earrings and Hairpiece: BHLDN / Bride and Maid of Honor’s Shoes: Rainbow Factory / Maid of Honor’s Dress: Two Birds / Maid of Honor’s Jewelry: BaubleBar / Hair and Makeup: Swell Beauty / Suits: Men’s Wearhouse / Bamboo Sunglasses: Shades of Bamboo / Caterer: The Vetted Table, A MIHO Experience / Taco Cart: San Diego Taco Company / Cupcakes: Pure Cupcakes / Bartending: ForReal Bartenders / Tables, Arch, Bar, Belly Bars: Farm Tables & More / Chair Rentals: Abbey Rentals / Slow Motion Video: Footprint Films / Wedding Invitations and Stationery: Bride / VW Bus: Family Friend’s Restored VW Bus