A Blue-and-White Nautical Wedding in Newport Beach

Taylor and Greg

Annie McElwain Photography

Newport-native Taylor met Orange County-bred Greg in 2009 when they were both in the bridal party of a mutual friend's wedding. They hit it off at the rehearsal dinner, Taylor caught the bouquet at the wedding, and they went out on a date the following week. They've been together ever since. Almost three years later, on July 28, 2012, they tied the knot, not far from their home. They selected Newport Beach, California, and celebrated the closeness of the Pacific (and the Newport Bay) with a palette and theme to match.

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The Invitation

Annie McElwain Photography

The stationery set the subtly nautical theme with its "seaglass and driftwood" color palette. The suite was printed on wood veneer.

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The Fashions

Annie McElwain Photography

Greg wore a Ralph Lauren tuxedo and bow tie with customized Nikes. He also personalized a pair of the same sneakers for each groomsmen by having their nicknames embroidered inside the tongues. He added a sentimental touch by donning his late grandfather's cufflinks and Taylor's late grandfather's tuxedo studs.

Taylor sported a Rivini chiffon and lace gown she found at Erin Cole. She covered her something old, new, borrowed, and blue with her aunt's diamond bangle, a pair of blue-topaz-and-diamond drop earrings, a ring she received for her 21st birthday, and a sapphire ring from her mom.

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The Bouquet

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An all-white bouquet of roses, Japanese anemones, and ranunculus was finished with a rosary that was given to Taylor by her mother for Christmas after she got engaged. Greg also received one, and he carried it in his pocket.

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The Bridal Party

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Taylor's best girls each picked out a soft green silk chiffon J.Crew dress to wear at the wedding.

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Bridesmaid Bouquets

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Each 'maid carried a bouquet of white and pink roses with trailing vines.

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The Church

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For their Catholic service, the couple chose Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church. It was the church Taylor attended growing up, and Greg's two sisters both tied the knot there.

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Along the Aisle

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Wild posies of ruffled heirloom roses, stock, and japonica in soft white tones were tied to the ends of the church pews with cotton grosgrain ribbon.

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All in the Family

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The ring bearer carried a pillow made by Greg's grandmother, that had been used in his sisters' weddings as well.

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The Little Ones

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The ring bearer and two flower girls walked hand-in-hand down the aisle.

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The Programs

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The ceremony programs (created by Bash, Please, who designed and produced the whole soiree) incorporated a subtle anchor image and stripes, and the booklet was tied together with rope.

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The Bride's Entrance

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Taylor's father walked her down the aisle, and then pulled back the blusher of her Chantilly lace-trimmed Erin Cole veil.

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The Ceremony

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The bride's and groom's mothers lit the same candles they used to light the unity candle at their wedding. The couple's family friend and her daughter performed Phil Wickham's "Always Forever".

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Portraits in the Sand

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After the ceremony the couple walked to the nearby beach to pose for their photographer, Annie McElwain.

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The Reception Location

Annie McElwain Photography

The Newport Harbor Yacht Club, just a few blocks from the church, was a picturesque setting for their pre-sunset reception. "I always knew I wanted to get married by the water in Newport because it is such a big part of my family's lives," Taylor said.

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Cocktail Hour

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Appetizers were Italian influenced in honor of the bride's heritage, and the Yacht Club's famous mini Mai Tais were the signature drink.

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The Escort Cards

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Escort cards were strung within a vintage boat using twine. Each card featured a different nautical flag design.

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The Menu

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Guests dined on a Caprese salad, chicken stuffed with spinach and mozzarella with a wild mushroom sauce, Parmesan risotto, and seasonal vegetables.

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All Hung Up

Anchor and Safety Throw Ring Accents
Annie McElwain Photography

Cards printed with nautical code flags in the event's seaglass palette were on hand for guests' well wishes on.

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The Signing Station

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A small table near the hanging cards was set up as a place for the attendees to write their notes to the couple.

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Nautical Numbers

Anchor and Safety Throw Ring Accents
Annie McElwain Photography

Table numbers were printed on cardstock and displayed in nautical knots made from raw rope.

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Reception Tables

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Long tables were topped with runners and adorned with a mix of glass gloves filled with flowers, glass cylinders filled with driftwood, and driftwood scattered throughout.

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Custom Centerpieces

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Hand-painted buoys added another seaside touch to the tablescape.

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The First Dance

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The couple danced to a song with lyrics that resonated with them, Michael Buble's "Everything".

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Goodies To Go

Anchor and Safety Throw Ring Accents
Annie McElwain Photography

Baggies were on hand for guests to grab chocolate-covered pretzels and macarons as a take-home treat.

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The Wedding Cake

Anchor and Safety Throw Ring Accents
Annie McElwain Photography

A three-tiered cake by Sweet and Saucy Shop boasted three flavor combos: chocolate cake with whipped cream, chocolate ganache, and fresh raspberries; chocolate cake with salted caramel sauce and chocolate ganache filling; and vanilla buttermilk cake with lemon cream, fresh raspberries, and lemon cream-cheese frosting. It was decorated with cascading hard candy "sea glass" made by Andie's Specialty Sweets.

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A Family Heirloom

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Taylor grew up loving her grandmother's extensive collection of vintage cake toppers. She chose a favorite of those to top the small cake on their dessert table.

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Annie McElwain Photography

Photography: Annie McElwain Photography

Ceremony Location: Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church

Reception Location and Catering: Newport Harbor Yacht Club

Event Coordination, Flowers, and Design: Bash, Please

Videography: Son of Shark Pig

Printing: Copper Willow

Cakes and desserts: Sweet and Saucy Shop

Music: DJ Nahchey

Rentals: Found Vintage Rentals; La Tavola Fine Linen; Town & Country Event Rentals

Hair: Patsy Howser of Escape Skincare Salon

Makeup: Fiore Beauty

Photobooth: Smilebooth

Engagement Ring and Wedding Bands: Tustin Village Jewelers

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