Melissa + Gus California Chic Avila Beach Wedding

Life has a beautiful way of bringing people back into your lives at just the right moment. That’s what happened when Melissa (or Missy, as I had known her for most of my life) sought us out to plan her wedding to long time boyfriend, Gus. It was such an honor to be asked by not only someone you had known forever to plan their wedding, but someone of such style and taste. Working with Missy and Gus was going to be fun, that was for sure.

Besides being a super fun experience, working with Missy and Gus was easy. Missy was organized and decisive, without being overbearing. She knew what she wanted and trusted us to find the right resources. She was flexible and collected while remaining steadfast on her vision. Gus was perfectly resourceful as well in helping source the videography team and selecting the photographer (incredibly talented and oh so charming Ginny Silver). They were a perfect example of a couple working together, and working with them was an absolute dream.

Missy and Gus’ California wedding was a perfect fusion of lively outdoor and beachy romantic vibes. Modern, boho inspired touches gave the whole event a chic and carefree air with lots of attention to small details.

Romantic Beach Wedding Venue

The entire event was held at Avila Beach Golf Resort in Avila Beach, California. This property is extremely diverse and well laid out, so guests really had a chance to migrate through event spaces and have different experience for each section of the day. The ceremony took place on a grass meadow next to a peaceful estuary, with just the right amount of ambient noise from the beach. The cocktail hour was held in the venue’s Beach Clubhouse, a charming space that featured an outdoor patio for guests to enjoy a bit of the California summer sun. For dinner and dancing, guests were seated at long rows of farm tables under the stars on the venue’s main lawn area. Adirondack chairs flanked firepits down towards the estuary, giving guests a peaceful respite from the energetic dance floor.

outdoor wedding reception

California Chic Wedding Design

Missy wanted to keep her palette classic and neutral, sticking with ivories, creams, beiges, with just a touch of blush pink and warm gray. We decided to lean heavily on greenery with statement blooms for a looser, more organic feel. To add in a touch of modernity, we punctuated the design with gold and champagne gold elements such as the geometric accent arrangements used in cocktail hour and during dancing.

We found a true gem in Adornments Flowers when we met and started working with Laurel and her team. With great craft and care, Laurel and her team elevated our vision with their impeccable installations, including one of the most gorgeous flower arches I have ever seen! Along with romantic silk chiffon runners from Party Crush Studios, as well as custom signage from our in-house designer Menakshee Designs and top-notch rentals from All About Events, we were able to help Missy and Gus realize a wedding that truly represented embodied their vision.

flower wedding arch

Best Caterer in Town

When I first met Heather of Splash Cafe, I can honestly say I was speechless. Her energy and passion (not to mention killer sense of humor) was both refreshing and contagious- I literally could not have asked for a better vendor partner on this project. Heather and her team performed seamlessly, orchestrating the entire set-up, break-down, food production and service of the entire event without a hitch. The food was delicious, with guests dining family style on true California dishes such tri-tip, roasted brussel sprouts, and margherita flatbread.

 

A Wedding Day Full of Family and Love

Overall, the day was perfect. Missy wore a gorgeous Hayley Paige gown while Gus looked perfect in a Jos. A. Bank suit. Their sweet and moving ceremony started with a friend of the bride’s late mother singing as Melissa walked down the aisle. The couple also included their lovable fur baby, Saint, in the ceremony- although his adorable back wriggling nearly stole the show! The warm, familial energy carried into the evening with heartfelt speeches and toasts before ramping into a full on dance party which included an epic garter removal.

Towards the end of the evening, firepits surrounded by Adirondack chairs were lit and guests were able to kick off their shoes, fire up a s’more, and enjoy the perfect end to a truly perfect day.

Thank you, Missy + Gus, for letting us be a part of your gorgeous day!

We are OBSESSED with the photos from the event, done by the genius that is Ginny Silver of Retrospect Images. Take a look at some of our favorites!

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Venue: Avila Beach Golf Resort

Coordination + Design: MIRA Events + Design

Photography: Retrospect Images

Videography: Steelhead Cinema

Catering: Splash Cafe

Rentals: All About Events

Silk Runners: PartyCrushStudios

DJ: Caliber DJs

Bridal Hair: Hair by Nicole Wasserman

Bridal Gown: Hayley Paige

Groom Suit: Jos. A. Bank

Bridesmaids Dresses: Show Me Your Mumu

Sarah + Jared’s Chic Nestldown Wedding

All of our couples have an amazing story to tell. Sarah and Jared’s is just a little bit cooler than most. Meeting in South Africa (hello romantic!) and joining each other on some fantastic travel adventures is one heck of a way to fall in love.

The first time I met Sarah and Jared, I was stunned by how ridiculously good looking they are. They looked like a model couple getting off the train and walking over to me, hand in hand, for our first planning session. It was during that same planning session that I confirmed their beauty was so much more than skin deep. They were kind, thoughtful, funny, and ambitious people who wanted to create a relaxed and beautiful celebrations for their international family and friends.

Location Location Location

When you’ve traveled all over the world, you have a LOT of sites to consider when searching for a wedding venue. Having seen so much natural beauty, it was important to Sarah and Jared to have a venue that had a lot of natural beauty of its own. They found their dream venue in Nestldown. Anyone who has ever been to Nestldown knows that the grounds are truly world class, and our couple was excited to share this gorgeous property with their guests.

A Menu Fit for a World Traveler

Food is an important cultural aspect no matter where you are! Sarah and Jared wanted to ensure that the menu served at their wedding would be delicious, refreshing, and exciting for their diverse group. Matching up with the South Bay Area’s Cafe Primavera was a perfect choice. Erika Garcia worked with the couple to come up with something that fit all of the criteria and displayed beautifully against the Nestldown backdrop.

Organic, Chic, and Clean Decor

Partnering with Darcy and her superteam over at Seascape Flowers was a great choice to accentuate Nestldown’s given beauty. Using fresh, unique greenery and statement blooms (hello King Proteas!), the wedding was an organic chic dream.

Personal Touches

In addition to the solid entertainment provided by MIRA favorite Turner Hayes (aka DJ Jazzy Thunder) from Elite Entertainment, a friend of the couple entertained guests through song during dinner. The bride’s mother helped design the custom menu and table numbers that rounded out the table settings, and the best man gave one of the most heartwarming speeches of adoration we have ever heard. All in all, a perfect evening (complete with hora!)

Check out these stunning images by Rhee Bevere Photography, as well as the wedding highlight video from Love Unique Studios!

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Venue: Nestldown 

Coordination: MIRA Events + Design

Photography: Rhee Bevere

Videography: Love Unique Studios

Florist: Seascape Flowers

Catering: Cafe Primavera

Entertainment: Elite Entertainment

Hair and Make-Up: Moderne Beauty

How To Keep Your Fiancé Engaged In Wedding Planning?

Although planning your dream wedding sounds glorious, many engaged couples lose motivation to make it a picture perfect celebration. There are many factors that make a wedding logistically sound, including; budget, timing, and location to name a few. Can you imagine the stress that couples undergo if any of these factors started to weaken? Insufficient funds and unfulfilled deadlines can send a relationship plummeting. What was once an inspired conversation now turns to arguing and bickering, leaving resentment between two lovers. So the question is, what can I do to keep my significant other engaged in the wedding planning process? Let’s take a look at some helpful tips.

Ann-Claire Brun Photography

Figure out what you both want.

Communication is an essential part of any healthy relationship. By telling each other what you want, you and your future spouse begin to visualize an ideal celebration. Asking each other questions can help discover both party’s preferences, as well as build motivation. By combining both bride and groom’s ideas early, the planning process becomes clearer and a perfect wedding starts to seem tangible.

As a wedding company we love to understand both our clients and the vision they want for their wedding. Before we begin anything in the planning process we always send out a questionnaire that gets all parties involved in identifying priorities and preliminary ideas for all aspects of the day. These concepts are built upon throughout the planning process. 

Harmony Hilderbrand Photography

Divide and conquer.

Don’t do all the work and stress yourself out even more. You and your companion are a team! Make sure your partner has equal responsibilities in the wedding plans, and that you haven’t taken on more than you can handle. Your fiancé may have something different in mind for an ideal wedding, so what better way than to give your spouse a role that he/she wants to be involved with. While you may be interested with floral design and stationery, your partner may be interested in food and music. Divide and conquer is the motto and this method will help relieve your stress.

Gavin Leane Photography

Give your partner control.

Giving your partner control can be motivating, and provide a new sense of ownership. An easy way to give your partner control is to allow him/her to plan one or two aspects of the event with complete control. Since most men don’t have a particular interested in much of the “standard” planning that comes with weddings, giving your fiance the green light to prepare a surprise is a great way to get them engaged and excited about the details. 

At MIRA we encourage couples to plan surprises to take place during the wedding reception. When surprises are incorporated it gives a personal touch of what the groom wants to do and not what he has to do. It sets aside the “sterile” planning and allows him to have fun with a creative idea for his bride-to-be.

Retrospect Images

Stay in the loop.

We encourage couples to always keep their significant other constantly aware of what is happening. A key factor to mutual agreement is to make sure he/she recognizes all the finer details that are being put into the wedding.

At MIRA we try our best to keep an open line of communication with both the bride and groom to prevent from anyone being left out. Open lines of communication include but are not limited to cake design, transportation, entertainment, etc. We also like to combine all important files (contracts, budget, timelines, etc.) and share it on the cloud so clients can have access whenever they please. This gives each individual the freedom to open up any emails and find any information they need to be included in the wedding.

Amy Gray Photography

 

Bonus Tip: Schedule Wedding Time

If none of the above sound like the right fit for your partner, concede by respecting that they just might not be interested in this whole planning business (that’s ok, you’ve got an amazing wedding planner anyway!) One tip we give all clients is to make wedding planning time a regularly scheduled item. You AND your fiance might find it hard to dutifully select ceremony music or go through the hors d’eouvres list after a long day at work. Scheduling time specifically for wedding planning not only helps both parties prepare for the massive amounts of decisions that need to be made, but also ensures you stay on track throughout your planning process. 

Happy planning!

Erica + Zach’s Fairytale Adventure Nestldown Wedding

Beauty breeds beauty. 

Being a preferred Nestldown wedding coordinator is certainly a privilege, and one we are very grateful to have. Not only because Nestldown is one of the most jaw-droppingly beautiful venues we have ever seen, but because the people that get married there tend to be really awesome people. 

Erica and Zach were absolutely no exception. From our first consultation we clicked tremendously, a connection that would last through the wedding day and beyond. They are down to earth, organized, funny, and great to look at- a wedding planners dream. Even better was their theme: an integration of their favorite Disney, sci-fi, and adventure movies and books including but not limited to Beauty and the Beast, Harry Potter, and Up!

Um. Hell yes. 

We worked on virtually every detail of Erica and Zach’s special day. First it was enlisting Poetry in Motion catering to provide the perfect mix of comfort foods and gourmet treats to fit a formal yet relaxed affair. Then it was signing on our favorite DJ Jazzy Thunder (aka. Turner Hayes) of Elite Entertainment to provide the sounds for a perfect party. Erica and Zach used personal contacts to fill their photography and videography needs, introducing us to two new awesome vendors in the process: Karla Rodriguez Videography and Gavin Leane Photography. Now it was time for the REAL fun stuff. 

Whimsy, Adventure, and Gorgeousness. 

For any fairytale inspired wedding, great flowers are a must. It was up to the very capable team at Seascape Flowers to produce a floral design fit for a princess. Darcy and her team did amazing, mixing the requested Japanese anemones with some of the most gorgesous cafe dahlias we have ever seen. Mix that with touches of mercury and rose gold metallics and neutral linens and you will find our personal type of heaven. 

Next were the tiny, personal details. Since the goal was to integrate several different movies into one event design we decided to work with non-obtrusive accent decor scattered throughout the event. The welcome table and guest tables included gold mirros and signage covered cloches. A handpainted mailbox was used to collect cards. Moss covered books, old cameras, and globes made up the bartop decor. The rings were carried in seashell containers. 

Even with the plethora of inspiration from their favorite movies, it was important to Erica and Zach to integrate some of their respective cultures into their wedding day. In addition to the Japanese anemones, Erica and her family spent hours creating and stringing the traditional 1,001 paper cranes for us to use during the ceremony and then later on in the reception for dancing. Zach’s culture was brought in during the dancing portion of the reception when the group performed the most intense hora I have ever witnessed. Seriously, it lasted at least 7 minutes and the energy reveberated across the entire mountainside. 

Last but certainly not least was the inclusion of a fun, interactive element. The Booth Bus is a refurbished vintage VW Bus that has been converted into an awesome photobooth. Anthony and his team provide everything, including the light up marquee and fun props. During every operating minute, there was a line in front of the bus- guests could simply not get enough!

Erica and Zach’s Nestldown wedding was one of those events that you’re so excited about, you almost wish they could get married all over again. We consider them dear friends and look forward to our next Nestldown wedding adventure! 

A big thank you to the vendor team!

Venue: Nestldown, LLC

Coordination + Design: MIRA Events + Design

Catering: Poetry In Motion Catering

DJ: Elite Entertainment

Photographer: Gavin Leane Photography

Videography: Karla Rodriguez Videography

Florist: Seascape Flowers

Photobooth: The Booth Bus

Hair and Make-Up: Kelly Jones

Transportation: Corinthian Parking

Specialty Rentals: The Test of Time Vintage Rentals