Category Archives: Outdoor Weddings

Blue Skies: Malibu Wedding at Villa Mara

By | Flower Duet, Gianna and Company, Jamaica's Cakes, Jeromy Robert Photography, Malibu, Outdoor Weddings, Private Estates | No Comments

This job is personality based.  You have to be a pro at logistics, negotiation, project management – but you also have to meld your personality with your clients, their families, and vendors.  I love that about this job, actually; I love meeting new people, gaining new insights into the world from the relationships I make, so it’s a perfect fit.

What a fun group! The bridal party, family, and friends had fun at the Santa Monica Pier photoshoot two days before the wedding.

Nick and Steph called me over a year ago about my services.  They are Dallas-based and wanted a beach side, LA wedding, not just for the view, but to accommodate relatives flying from Asian and European locations (LAX is the perfect hub for such travels).  From there, the adventure began:  Searching for venues, landing the perfect spot, and constructing a day that wove in a Chinese tea ceremony, an ocean-view ceremony, and a killer after party.

A lovely Chinese tea ceremony prefaced the western Ceremony.

Jamaica's Cakes took the bride and groom's ideas and implemented them perfectly.

The architecture of a space is so important when considering event photography.

My favorite view of Villa Mara...

The party kept going into the night thanks to Chris Broulette, from California Sounds, and Michael C Events served up some delicious short ribs and a signature cocktail created by the bride and groom.

This crowd could dance!!

We keep finding excuses to keep in touch: Cleaning Steph’s dress, following up on the marriage certificate – you know, the usual!  It was a pleasure planning their big day, and thanks to Jeromy Roberts Photography, we have glorious pictures to remember it by.  Even more snaps in Galleries!

Venue: Villa Mara / Gianna and Company

Flowers:  Flower Duet

Photography:  Jeromy Robert Photography

Cake:  Jamaica’s Cakes

After-party Treats:  Cake Monkey

DJ:  California Sounds – Chris Broulette

Caterer: Michael C Events

Multicultural Fete in Malibu

By | B and G Photography, Command Performance Catering, Hindu Ceremony, Multicultural Weddings, Outdoor Weddings, Private Estates, Wedding Coordinator | No Comments

I love all kinds of weddings – in a hotel, backyard, loft – but I do have a special fondness for estate weddings.  You need to bring in all different elements – rentals, catering – that are all-inclusive at other spaces, which makes logistics more complicated (and we LOVE logistics), but with that, you can be more creative.

(All glorious photos by B and G Photography…)

The architecture of Villa Cascata made for stunning backdrops to every photo.

Villa Cascata is a stunning space in Malibu, operated by Malibu Destinations.  Jessica Valentine is the site manager, and the calmest person I think I’ve ever met.  No matter what we threw her way, she was quick, cool, collected and constantly offered her help.  She plans events on her own, and we look forward to working with her for a long time to come.

The estate was perfect for our clients Laura and Omkar, and we loved working with them.  From the start I could tell they were organized – they had a great itinerary planned.  First, a Christian ceremony took place in the garden terrace area that greets all visitors; then, a cocktail hour by the pool.  After that, a Hindu wedding on the lawn overlooking the stunning ocean view.  The Hindu ceremony began with a traditional groom’s processional on a horse, called the baraat.  The mandap, the altar, was beautifully dressed, and the service included those not of Hindu background with explanations of each aspect of the ceremony, and staying true to the most important of Hindu traditions.

The horse!

Afterwards, a good old-fashioned reception with dinner and dancing followed on the dressed-up tennis courts at the far end of the venue.

All ready for the party...

Impeccably timed shuttles ferried the happy guests to their hotels right on time at the end of the night, and under Jessica’s supervision and guidance, cleanup was a snap.  All in all, it was a wonderful first event for No Worries at one of our new favorite venues.

Venue:  Villa Cascata

Caterer:  Command Performance

Photographers:  B and G Photography

DJ: Mick Smiley – Better Music Services

Ceremony and Cocktail Musician:  Chris Wooley

Flowers:  Conroy’s Flowers Beverly Hills

Mandap:  Happy Chuppah

The Great Outdoors

By | Hidden Chateau, Outdoor Weddings, Private Estates, Venues | No Comments

An outdoor wedding is par for the course here in L.A.  Because we have no real seasons (except for a bit of rain in the winter and a hellacious few weeks in the summer – when global warming doesn’t get in the way), outdoor venues are fair game nearly the year ’round.

There are a few important things to keep in mind when working with Mother Nature – and of course, the #1 factor in keeping an outdoor wedding a a success is, the weather.

If you’re looking to wed in an unpredictable time of the year, build into your budget about $2k or so for a large tent in case of rain, and an install day as well.  Most venues will add some sort of fallback into the contract, but many don’t.  Talk about your options.  But fret not:  Heavy rain is rare here in L.A., and the weather forecasts tend to be super conservative.  Watch for:

  1. Anything greater than a 50% chance of rain a week out, surrounded by days before and after with a similar forecast. That means a real storm is on its way.
  2. A forecast for a high percentage of rain, within 2-3 days of the event.  The closer to the date, the more accurate the forecast.  A 30% chance predicted 7 days ahead, just for the day of your wedding? Be alert, but don’t lose sleep over it.
  3. Tent requests.  Call your rental company a couple weeks in advance and put a hold on a tent if you have concerns.  If the forecast looks nasty leading to the week of, you may want to put down a deposit – every rental house in town will have clients asking for them.

Many spots, like the L.A. River Center, have indoor spaces that work well as backups.  Others provide other outdoor areas that lend themselves well to tenting.  Just cover it extensively in your negotiations so you can rest easy.

The fountain at LARC - a conversation piece in and of itself.

The benefits of outdoor weddings, however, far outweigh the meteorological dangers.  Natural greenery is so beautiful, and it lessens the need for large and expensive floral arrangements.  Many outdoor spaces are also full of character, from the beautiful Hidden Chateau to private estates.

We have a Malibu estate wedding coming up, and the space is just stunning. The view is without compare, and the different nooks and crannies built into the living space provide the clients unique opportunities in designing the look and feel of the event.

For example, there is a built-in seating area that, with additional chairs, can hold up to 20.  In the middle is a fire pit, which will come in handy after dinner when the sun goes down.  It’s an ideal place for parents of the bride or other VIPs.

A unique grass/stone "checkerboard" space with the banquette/firepit in the corner.

Up on the back patio is a small cove that is ideal for cake. It’s raised above the main party area, so everyone can admire dessert while they mingle for cocktail hour.

We'll replace the small table with a 42" round for the cake.

Architecture is something you see beautifully highlighted in many outdoor venues, from SmogShoppe’s living wall –

The living wall at SmogShoppe, with a Gilly centerpiece.

To LA River Center’s famous tower, here lit up with a gobo.

The tower at LARC, lit up at night.

Parcans or LED uplights can show off arches, and laser-cut gobos can splash a design or your initials on a tall exterior wall.  Some spaces will even allow for projecting an old movie on the exterior of a building.

At the risk of using a cheesy exterior pun…folks, the sky’s the limit when designing your outdoor wedding (groan…I couldn’t help myself!).