Today we celebrate an incredible, larger than life coupleSamantha & Steve from NJ/NYC (my homeland), you crazy kids, CONGRATULATIONS to you!

Some quick, fun tidbits about them: Italian famiglia! Eat a cannoli, then work it off at the gym. Sinatra sings it best: “No one else could love you more”. Black Labs are their fur babies. Yankees!!! All that glitters is good. “New York, New York!!!”

We asked them to send us some info about how they met, what drew them together, and how happiness radiates with every day that they are now together. Samantha sent us such touching responses that our initial blog post theme (“The Supporting Team behind your wedding”) fell somewhat to the wayside.

But it was still clear from speaking with her how important their “Supporting Teams” actually were at the wedding – people who helped to make the Big Day perfect, even when it was…well, POURING down rain that day…and got somewhat washed out.

With the help of an amazingly professional vendor team, plus the positive attitude & support from their family & friends, they ended up LOVING their Big Day, and the photos show only fun, love & perfect harmony. Here’s how it went down…

L’Auberge Del Mar, one of San Diego’s finest, most luxury hotels overlooking the Pacific Ocean, always looks beautiful – rain or shine. Well, this particular day was raining cats & dogs, as they say… Catering & Banquets teams had to reorganize the entire day’s setup last minute, moving the washed-out ceremony site and reception from the outdoor terrace to the ballroom at the last minute – not a simple undertaking!

Petula Pea Photography owner Patty Brutlag, a truly gifted artist, managed to capture not only classic wedding shots with enough light & elegance that most photos hid the fact that droplets were hitting everyone & everything in their path, but also stunning “rain-phillic” photos of Samantha & Steve, celebrating the beauty of the rain and its purity for their special love together. These umbrella moments = priceless!

Jennifer Cole Flowers, with their delicate touch and grace with blooms, brought sunshine to a rainy day in the nuances of soft pinks, ivory, and pale greens…magical, lush bouquets & arrangements set out on gorgeous linens by Concepts Event Design lit up a dreary day to grand proportions.

Jennifer Cole Florals

Our own Lauren Rennie of Sweet Cheeks Baking Co. stepped in to assist, as she is known to do, and spent hours of extra time at L’Auberge, helping to move décor downstairs and recreate the magic that was intended for the garden-style terrace outside. Our Baking Team made delicious assorted goodies that Lauren designed as a feast for the eyes AND taste buds at their dessert table. She personally selected the most appropriate cake stands & platters from our collection and of course embellished with beautiful blooms from JCF to bring that English garden feel to the lower level ballroom. Our Decor Team created an awesome life-size and life-like Yankees ballcap groom’s cake – a surprise from Sam to Steve – which brought all the family men together, especially Steve & his dad for the cake cutting!

Samantha is a natural beauty already, but in that Inbar Dror gown and Jimmy Choo shoes with her Hair & Makeup embellished by Makeup by Shelby, she is just strikingly elegant! (Her brides’ maids made up beautifully by Be Loved Hair & Makeup)

Anthology Films, darling & talented friends of ours and one of the premiere videographers in Southern CA, filmed the whole fabulous event – we hope to show some video clips from their library!

Humor & tenderness by Officiant Rick Grove, as well as fabulous musical selections from ceremony to dance party by Illeet Entertainment, kept guests laughing & loving the day!

The guests were treated at each place setting with a fun cookie favor, provided by Sweet Studio’s Cheri Hoy.

We must also recognize how critical WEDDING GUESTS truly are in making an event what it is. They tell funny stories, they dance & sing. They cry and hug and kiss and shine! These are generally the most important people in your lives – from family to childhood friends, family doctors to work-mates and current neighbors. Samantha & Steve’s guests as well as their Wedding party helped with dress buttons, fabric, tie-ups, cuff links, beverage toasts, Hugs and smiles! Everyone kept each other laughing through the downpour.

As Told by Samantha

Steve and I met under unusual circumstances – at a wedding where we were NOT each other’s date. We were seated across the table from one another and I (obviously oogling him because he is soo handsome). But once the night was over he went back to California and I went on with my life in NJ (working in NYC). Until one night out in the city with one of my girlfriends we meet up with her husband and STEVE. We only got to talk for a couple of minutes, and then of course, back to California he went. I saw him one more time on the east coast that summer before officially reconnecting with him that November.

I was going out in NYC one night with the couple (whose wedding I first saw him at); my girlfriend had told me the morning of that Steve was in NJ and coming that night too. I made it all the way through dinner and half way into our night out before realizing it was a double date or that he had any interest in me (romantically). Once that clicked, we were basically as inseparable as you could be as a bi-coastal couple. I was absolutely infatuated with him – and him me, and that quickly turned into a different kind of love that I’ve never felt before. We were so similar, enjoyed the same things, same sense of humor, etc. He came to visit me LITERALLY every single weekend for 6 months until I realized something’s gotta give. I quit my job in NYC and moved to San Diego – without a ring, because he was absolutely without a doubt the love of my life.

After about a week and a half after moving to SD, Steve came home one night from with and insisted that we go to Sunset Cliffs since I had always wanted to go. After some walking to find the perfect place to watch the sun set, Steve got on one knee and asked me to marry him. Hands down easiest question to answer in my life!

Then came the wedding venue shopping! We went to visit two different vineyards in Malibu, and some places in Laguna. Nothing seemed right. We both love the beach, so we decided that the vineyards were out. The places in Laguna were beautiful but too grandiose for what we were looking for. Then we found the L’Auberge Del Mar. It was exactly what I was imagining. A boutique-y feel without sacrificing quality, with the most amazing view. I wanted something soft and romantic and classic, so the obvious choice in my mind was pink peonies and roses. Jennifer Cole is a genius – I gave her that and she took it and ran with it and it looked beautiful. (Granted, I didn’t get to see what it would have looked like with the arch and the flowers down the aisle because of the rain ☹ ) My bouquet was full of white peonies and it was TO DIE FOR.

My dress was Inbal Dror, first one I tried on

He is just the most perfect man in the world and I’m SO lucky he’s all mine! 😉 🙂

Our Favorite Images

Thank you again to Petula Pea Photography owner Patty Brutlag for the amazing photos