What We Wore on Our Wedding Day

Nate and I have received a lot of compliments on our casual but colorful wedding attire so I wanted to spend a little time discussing our vision and giving you the details if you are into that sort of thing.

Nate and I agreed early on that we would individually make our own decisions on what we and our parties wore. I let each lady pick their own dress and Nate’s crew wore short-sleeved guayaberas, dark jeans and pumas. I loved how our whole wedding party combined together with so much color and individuality.

Recently, I’ve been having a lot of fun pushing myself to learn more about Photoshop. I’ve been using the program for the past ten years, but only use about 10% of its potential. Last week, I worked on my first mood boards and decided to make them about our wedding outfits. So here you go and again, this one is mostly for those who have asked us about what we wore. If this sort of post isn’t your thing, please feel free to pass it by.

Nate’s wedding look

Nate wanted pieces he would wear again and be comfortable in. I love the look he came up with. First you have the classic guayabera shirt. The linen is so perfect for a warm summer wedding. Then the casual element with dark jeans and pumas. Wearing jeans was probably the most controversial decision of our entire vision, but we thought they fit the vibe we were going for so I was totally on board with them. Who doesn’t like a guy in a pair of well-fitting jeans?

What Nate wore on our wedding day

1) We spent a lot of time looking for Nate’s guayabera shirt and we were thrilled with the quality of this 100% linen long sleeve one we bought from Cubavera.
2) The jeans are Levi’s Dark Wash Bootleg Jeans.
3) All the groomsmen wore different color Suede Classic Pumas. Nate went with the limestone gray/midnight blue with blue laces.
4) Nate’s boutonniere was handmade.

My wedding look

I really didn’t have a vision of want I wanted for a wedding dress. Originally I was going to go with a short party dress with pockets, but my sister convinced me to get a real wedding dress and I am so glad I did. Once I found this one-sleeved gown, the rest of the look fell into place. I went with a lot of color and a definitely played up the “greek goddess” references with my gold sash and bracelet.

What Andrea wore on our wedding day

1) The flowers in my hair are also handmade.
2) As soon as I saw the Kendra Scott Turquoise Dayla Drop Earrings I knew they were perfect for my vision. These are probably the most expensive earring I own, but I love the weight and durability of them.
3) I picked up this gradated gold cuff at Forever 21 for a few dollars.
4) I was very excited to find this gold beaded sash from BridesBoutik’s Etsy Shop. It gave my dress the right amount of definition at the waist without going overboard.
5) Ann Taylor Silk Georgette Pleated One Shoulder Gown was such an easy gown to wear. I wanted something I could wear all day and dance in and this dress was great. I got it for a steal through the flash sale site Rue La La and my mom tailored it to fit just right.
6) My sister actually bought the TOMS Strappy Wedges in hot pink for herself, but then went with a pink dress so we switched shoes. These wedges are so comfortable that I was able to wear and dance with no problem.

*On a sad note, these Gold Bumble Bee Bobby Pins didn’t make it in time for the wedding (my fault not the vendor), but I would have totally rocked them if they had arrived in time.

My Makeup

I love makeup and will admit to spending hours reading and watching reviews on any new products I bought for my wedding look. I was very happy with the result and send a big thank you out to Nikki for helping me get my eyes just right! If I have one tip for summer brides, use a setting spray like Urban Decay’s Deslick to make sure your makeup stays perfect through the warm weather.

What makeup I wore on my wedding day

Step 1: Makeup for Ever HD Foundation / Maybelline Instant Age Rewind Eraser Dark Circles Treatment Concealer Brightener/ Sonia Kashuk Hidden Agenda II Concealer Palette / Bare Minerals Well Rested Powder
Step 2: Laura Geller Bronze N Brighten / Lorac Baked Matte Satin Blush in Exposed
Step 3: Tarte Clean Slate 360° Creaseless 12-Hr Smoothing Eye Primer / Urban Decay Naked Palette / Urban Decay 24-7 Glide-On Eyeliner in Whiskey
Step 4: Nars Velvet Gloss Lip Pencil in Mexican Rose
Step 5: Urban Decay Deslick Makeup Setting Spray / L’Oreal Paris Voluminous Waterproof Mascara
Step 6: Essie’s Geranium on my toes (I had a bubblegum pink gel manicure but don’t know the exact color) / Body Shop White Musk (Nate’s favorite) / Pacifica Indian Coconut Nectar Body Cream

Our DIY Wedding Backdrop {stripes + hearts for days}

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Our backdrop was a vision I had early on in the planning process and it continued to develop up until the big day. As I mentioned in my vows, I wanted to use a lot of saturated colors at our wedding and I think our backdrop played a big part in that.

Martha Stewart Living Streamers

It started with this photo from Martha Stewart my mom found on Pinterest. We really liked the idea of using rolls of crepe paper. We also liked the idea of stringing paper hearts as it echoed the heart pattern I used on our wedding invitations.

Wedding Work Days

With our plan in mind, the next part was logistics especially how we were to install the backdrop. Since a chain-link fence separated my parents and the neighbors, we decided to do our best to hide that completely from view with a solid canvas behind the crepe paper. Then we could hang the crepe paper and hearts from the frame.

Wedding Work Days

Making the Frame

We started with a wood frame that was built on a Saturday work day.

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The frame began with the posts that were installed to hang the lights. Then, Nate and Jeremy added top and bottom pieces so we had a full frame to staple to.

Sheets as Canvas

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My mom and I found beautiful sheets at Target in the perfect color for the fabric. We stapled them to the frame to make a giant coral canvas.

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This was installed the day before the wedding and we sprayed the whole thing down with the hose to remove all the wrinkles.

Wedding Prep

It was so hot out that it dried very quickly!

Crepe is Rolled Out: Layer One

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The morning of the wedding, I had a two things to accomplish. Finish the backdrop and leave the house by noon to get ready. Adie assisted me so I stayed on schedule and kept my stapling on target.

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We worked from the middle out to each side. We layered the crepe so the middle had the widest stripes and then got thinner as them moved towards the sides. I simply stapled the rolls to the top of the frame and let the roll hang down.

Hearts on a String: Our 2nd Layer

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The final layer was the strings of hearts we made on a craft day. We followed the same pattern as the crepe paper by keeping the hearts close in the middle and then spaced them wider and wider apart as we worked towards the sides. Again we stapled these to the top of the frame and my plan was to let them hang.

DIY Wedding Backdrop

Unfortunately later in the day, the strings and paper began to swing in the delta breeze and got all tangled up.

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So right before the ceremony, friends worked to untangle and staple them to the bottom of the frame so everything was more secure.

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I was thrilled with the final look. I think a part of me was a little nervous how it would look until we hung the crepe paper. But stepping back and seeing those stripes up, I was so excited. The bright tones played beautifully against the greens and blues of the backyard. The backdrop was that bold pop of color – exactly what I was going for.

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As the sun dipped low, the colorful backdrop continued to put off this wonderful radiance. I love seeing it in the background of many our photos. The colors and hearts make me so happy. I was happy to be a “little late” to my own wedding prep as the backdrop was well worth the effort.

Our Wedding Day: Part 3

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Hi Everyone! This is the third and final recap post of the big night. I will have a few posts about wedding projects I’ve been asked about as well, but those are back on the DIY side of things. Here’s links to part One and Two if you missed them!

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After our paella feast, it was time for cupcakes. We liked the idea of cupcakes since they are easy to serve (no plates!) and we could have a variety of flavors to satisfy all our guests. After a tasting with Vanilla Bean Gourmet, we decided on three cupcakes to serve – their Signature Vanilla Bean, Salted Caramel & Toffee and Raspberry Beret. The cupcakes were served on a big multi-tiered display outside. There was a little confusion where we would keep them cool when they were delivered earlier that afternoon, but luckily the laundry room ended up being the perfect place.

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With desserts in hand, a few of our favorite people stepped up to the microphone.  My parents gave the welcoming speech which relied on my mom interjecting commentary into my dad’s prepared speech. It was hilarious.

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Next, Jeff gave his best man speech which he’s been thinking about since Nate and him became close friends twenty some years ago. Obviously it was amazing.

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And finally, it was my sisters turn. Their heartfelt speech intertwined their thoughts together and was very sweet as well.

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Then it was time for the dancing. Nate and I had decided to dance to Magnetic Fields’ Nothing Matters When We Are Dancing. It’s a bit sappy, but we really think its darling.

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Next, my Dad and I danced to Paul Simon’s Diamonds on the Sole of Her Shoes and finally Nate and his mom danced to Phil Colin’s Sussudio.

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Although this was all very exciting, I was really happy to move on to the group dancing.

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Highlights of the dancing including a spirited soul train…

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And a raging version of Daft Punk’s One More Time including the appropriately acted out “get down and low” and then the “accelerate and jump” that is often cut off (irks Nate every time).

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Of course those that needed a break retired to the smoking lounge which was kicking as well….

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And like any good party the authorities stopped by and told us to keep it down after curfew.

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We eventually complied after a few more songs. 🙂

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All in all – the wedding succeeded in everything I hoped for. It was beautiful to have this amazing moment with Nate. It was touching to see so many of our favorite people together for one night. And it kicked-ass for all of our projects and crafts to come out so perfect.

Want to dance? Here’s the highlighted songs above via Spotify.

Our Wedding Day: Part 2

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Woo! Part Two of our wedding day is here and its all about everyone’s favorite thing food and drinks. If you missed Part One, check it out here.

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The side patio became our reception area immediately after the ceremony.

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Guests were encouraged to feast on hors d’oeuvres, enjoy a drink and even get a tattoo.

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While our guests chatted, Nate and I stayed on the small side yard to sign the marriage license, were congratulated by friends and tried to shake off our nerves.

Homemade Hors d’oeuvres

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After a lot of discussion and budget negotiations, we decided to ask our families to help out with a simple appetizer spread instead of having it catered. It included Salt-Crusted Potatoes with Cilantro Mojo, Uncle Tom’s Spicy Hummus and Caprese Skewers with Balsamic Glaze. I am including the recipes at the bottom of the post for those of you requesting them! We received many compliments on the food so I was so glad we focused on a few good recipes. My mom was a major help on the menu selection and she gets all the props on the potato dish.

The Bar

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Our bar was manned by two strapping lads – Steve and Cameron (above). Steve is a friends of ours from way back and we were thrilled they agreed to bartend for us.

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Our glass party favors were stacked next to our seating chart for guests to pick up and use at the bar. We also had biodegradable cocktail and pint glasses on hand since we knew it would be hard for everyone to keep track of their glass.

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We served three types of wine that we personalized with cat labels. I spent a lot of time finding the best wine for the wedding. I wanted something good and inexpensive which was not the easiest combo. Over 6-8 weeks, I believe I tried about 18 different possibilities before deciding on three. Amazingly, the final selections all came from Trader Joes and I was able to special order cases so it was a really simple process. We served Espiral Vinho Verde ($3.99), Barbera D-Asti ($4.99) and Honey Moon Vigonier ($4.99). We placed the Barbera and Vigonier on each table and the Vinho Verde was served at the bar.

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On to the carbonated drinks on tap. Natural Light or “Nate Light” as we call it, was a given. It’s Nate’s preferred beverage and was the easiest decision of the whole wedding. We had two kegs ready to go since we knew this would be a crowd pleaser for our crew. We also got a keg of Bear Republic Racer 5, a really nice hoppy IPA from Healdsburg, CA. It was mainly for those of us who like a little more flavor in our beer than Natty. 😉

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Then we had a pony keg of Two Rivers Blood Orange Cider for toasting. Nate and I are not big sparkling wine people and I though a hard cider would work really well for our wedding. The blood orange flavor is our favorite. It’s not too sweet or sour and had a lovely orange color that even matched the wedding!

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And wait, there’s more! On top of the beer and wine, we also had well drinks. We kept it very simple with a few mixers and let our guests order whatever combination they liked at the bar.

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Our non-alcoholic beverages were served next to the bar. Cans were displayed in my parents canoe and then we had iced tea and lemonade as well.

Decor and Setup

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While the guests snacked and we took a breather, our wedding party went to work on the ceremony site transforming it into the dancing and dining area. About 60% of the crew have experience as wait staff or stage crew so we knew they could handle the task like the pros they are.

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Everyone had a job. The boys moved the chairs and brought out tables stashed behind the redwood trees into four long rows. Then the girls brought out the tablecloths and decor.

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I purposely kept the tablescapes simple. We had bright striped runners, herb pots, votives, two bottles of cat wine, mixed nuts and wine openers. Adie and Nikki had cleverly packed each table’s decor earlier in the day so all the ladies had to do was bring out the baskets and decorate.

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When the tables were ready, water goblets and pitchers of ice water were laid out. (Nate and I wanted to make sure our guests had no problem staying hydrated!)

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Once the “set change” was done, guests were asked to find their table. Then DJ Scott, announced us and we walked out from the back with refreshments in-hand to sit at our head table.

Dinner

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We hired a wonderful catering company out of Lodi for dinner. They have an amazing paella that they make on site. You can imagine how wonderful it smelled with the garlic and saffron. It was heavenly. We had deliberated a long time on what food to serve our guests and I am so glad we went with the paella. I have never heard so many people rave about a catered event before. Addy’s was just fabulous.

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They served their house (chicken, shrimp and andouille sausage) and vegetarian paella. The meal was easily modified for our vegan friends by just removing the garlic aioli. Addy’s also served a green salad and bread along with the dish and guest were encouraged to have seconds. We actually had an amazing amount of leftovers as well so we certainly got our moneys worth.

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Nate and I sat at the front with the Jeff, his wife Rachel, my sister Ali and her husband Kevin. We greeted people as they made their way to the paella bar. It was wonderful to be able to look out at all our guests from the head table. The setting was so lovely and only got better as the sun dipped low.

Thanks for reading through this second wedding recap! With summer officially over and school starting today I am working on getting on regular posting schedule.

Appetizer Recipes

Salt-Crusted Potatoes with Cilantro Mole Sauce

Adapted from this and this.

  • 1 pound small potatoes
  • 3 cups water
  • 1/2 cup Kosher salt
  • 3 large garlic cloves chopped
  • 1 green chili pepper, seeded and chopped
  • Leaves from a bunch of fresh cilantro chopped
  • 1 tsp freshly ground cumin seeds
  • 1/2 cup extra-virgin olive oil
  • 2 tsps white wine vinegar
  1. Put the potatoes, water, and Kosher salt into a pot and simmer uncovered for 10 minutes. With a wooden skewer, test to see if they are tender. Pour off most of the water, reserving as much salt as possible.
  2. Lower the heat and keep a watchful eye on the potatoes. The goal is to let the water evaporate so the potatoes are coated in salt. Be careful not to burn the salt or the potatoes. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes, then remove the potatoes and let cool.
  3. Use a kitchen towel to wipe the excess salt off each potato, leaving only a light dusting of salt on each. Clean the potatoes one by one so the skins don’t break.
  4. To make the cilantro mole – put the garlic, green chili pepper, and 1 teaspoon salt in a mortar, and pound into a paste. Add the cilantro leaves, and pound until they are incorporated into the paste. Add the cumin, and gradually mix in the oil to make a smooth sauce. Just before serving, add the vinegar, and spoon into a small bowl.
  5. Serve the potatoes and sauce at room temperature.

Uncle Tom’s Spicy Hummus

  • 2 cans garbanzo beans drained
  • 1 small (7 oz) can of chipotle peppers in adobo sauce
  • 1/4 cup yogurt
  • 2 cup tahini
  • juice of 2-3 limes
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1 tsp cumin powder
  • 2-3 cloves garlic

Put chipotle peppers in blender, and mix with small quantities of milk until evenly-mixed and smooth. Serve with crudité and pita chips.

Caprese Skewers with Balsamic Glaze

  • cherry or grape tomatoes
  • mini mozzarella cheese balls
  • fresh basil leaves, cut in half if large
  • balsamic glaze
  • salt & pepper

Cut tomatoes in half. Thread the mozzarella cheese ball, basil leaf (fold in half if large) and a tomato half onto a tooth pick. Repeat with remaining ingredients. Season with salt & pepper, then drizzle balsamic glaze on top.