A Traditional Brown-and-White Wedding in California
Suzanne and Adam
Suzanne and Adam's May ceremony took place at Our Lady of the Wayside, a little church in Portola Valley, California. The bride's family has a home in the area, and she spent many summers visiting this church; her parents married at a church across the street. Lisa Lefkowitz photographed the couple's big day, which was planned with the help of Alison at Alison Events.
Ceremony and Reception
The day featured a multitude of beautiful floral arrangements by Neil Hunt of Hunt Littlefield. For the cocktail hour, the outdoor space was outfitted with a combination of floral globes and paper lanterns hung from the latticed ceiling. A woven sphere of split bamboo hung above the oval table that later housed a seafood buffet and an edgy yet romantic centerpiece of green bells of Ireland, hydrangeas, and vintage garden roses.
A pair of 2-foot-wide wreaths hung on the exterior doors of the church. Lush white hydrangeas, tea and garden roses, and a few flax leaves created a clean yet romantic decoration as guests arrived.
Suzanne's bouquet mixed classical elegance with a hint of contemporary. The different flowers (gardenias, stephanotis, lily of the valley, polo roses, and peonies) were arranged in small groupings.
Continuing the feeling of tailored arrangements, the centerpieces on the dining tables were a mix of high and low pieces. Bells of Ireland, native dogwood branches, and tulips formed the taller pieces, anchored by a trio of simple flower groupings. Atop each place setting rested a single cut tulip.
Old-fashioned daffodils filled small square vessels, covered with clusters of spray roses and a touch of moss. These were sprinkled on the tables where guests gathered during cocktail hour.
Each bridesmaid carried a bouquet of Dutch parrot tulips and white peonies in a collar of hosta foliage. More colorful blooms were used to accent the rich chocolate tone of the women's dresses.
Suzanne's dress and hand-painted veil, both by Carolina Herrera, showcased lovely eyelet details.
The gown's eyelet pattern was mimicked on the couple's cake, which was a white cake with fresh strawberries and cream inside, a nod to Suzanne's love of strawberry shortcake. It was created by Michele Pett.
Adam and Suzanne (who swapped her veil for a lush blossom for the reception) pose for a few photographs after the ceremony.
In addition to the traditional wedding cake, Adam had a cupcake-tower version of a groom's cake; it highlighted his favorite hobbies: skiing, playing softball, and reading books (he's a history teacher).
Suzanne's enjoyment of the combination of chocolate brown and white helped her to develop her color palette. She chose J. Crew bridesmaid dresses and asked the girls to pick from three styles. The groomsmen wore matching ties.
A monogram of the couple's initials (designed by the bride's sister) was incorporated throughout the wedding on details such as the program, cocktail napkin, and dinner menu.
Custom imprinted cocktail napkins accompanied cold drinks such as lemonade. Guests needed the refreshment, as an unexpected heat wave swept in just prior to the wedding day.
These simple menus, printed with brown ink, displayed the three-course menu created by the Menlo Park Circus Club.
DJ Sol provided music for the reception, during which the couple danced together for the first time as newlyweds to Ben Harper's "Beloved One."
Adorned with pink- and brown-painted cans and a "Just Married" sign, a vintage getaway car from Phil Toy carried the couple off.
Location: Our Lady of the Wayside in Portola Valley, California
Photographer: Lisa Lefkowitz
Wedding Planning: Alison Events
Shuttle Service: Pure Luxury
Reception Location: Menlo Circus Club
Floral Arrangements: Neil Hunt of Hunt Littlefield
Bridal Gown and Veil: Carolina Herrera
Cake: Michele Pett
Bridesmaid Dresses: J. Crew
Monograms: C.E. Collins
Music: DJ Sol
Vintage Getaway Car: Phil Toy