A Bohemian "Beach Bum" Wedding in Rancho Santa Fe, California

sara trisdan wedding couple smiling on lawn
This Modern Romance

Though Sara and Trisdan met as high school freshmen in 2002, they took their time falling in love. "We were good friends throughout high school and into adulthood, but finally realized in our late 20s that we had a special connection and quickly grew in love," says Sara. In 2018—sixteen years after they met—Trisdan surprised Sara with a sunset proposal in Ensenada wine country while they were on a weekend trip with their closest friends.

As they began planning their wedding, they had a shared focus: "Our number one priority was to make sure our friends and family had a blast!" says Sara. "We wanted to create a beautiful atmosphere with an awesome party." They booked the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe in Rancho Santa Fe, California, for their 190-person party on July 20, 2019, in part because it already had a sentimental connection. "Trisdan grew up right down the street from the Inn, and we still love to walk to have brunch or dinner there with his family," says Sara. "It's also where our families first met each other. It felt like home for us."

Sara and Trisdan included a variety of personal callouts to their favorite things, like naming their signature drinks after their dogs; giving out Turkish towels in honor of their love of the beach; and choosing a color palette that included cool blue, green, and teal alongside warm orange and caramel shades. "We were picturing a playful, bohemian, tropical paradise much like many of our favorite destinations we love to visit in Mexico," says Sara. And when the big day came, it was the party they always imagined. "There's no better feeling than being on the dance floor dancing your heart out, looking around and seeing all your loved ones from so many phases in life surrounding you with love," says Sara.

01 of 19

Just Beachy

sara trisdan wedding invitations in orange and yellow tones
This Modern Romance

Sara and Tristan asked Four Things Paper to create a paper suite with several recurring elements, including a palm frond background, dramatic script text, and a watercolor envelope liner, that previewed the beach pinks and tans of the big-day decor.

02 of 19

Bold and Beautiful

sara trisdan wedding bride's embroidered dress
This Modern Romance

The bride had two conditions for her wedding dress: "I always knew I wanted long sleeves, and I didn't want the dress to be too bridal," she says. But as she tried on an increasing number of "boho-chic designers," nothing felt right. "I was slowly becoming discouraged, as everything felt very forced and not me," she says. But when she caught sight of a lace Rue de Seine gown on the rack, she was hooked. "It was very different and very bold compared to everything I had tried before," she says. "Once I put it on, I knew it was made for me and I didn't want to take it off! I felt like myself in this dress." She still visited the shop three times before committing. "With each one of my visits I brought at least two of my bridesmaids with me," she says. "I needed all the opinions I could get!"

03 of 19

Bright and Blooming

sara trisdan wedding bride's floral bouquet
This Modern Romance

Sara's loosely gathered bouquet from The Dainty Lion included garden roses, orchids, dahlias, and other flowers in shades of cream and white, with green, blush, and caramel accents.

04 of 19

Blue Mood

sara trisdan wedding party in blue on sunny lawn
This Modern Romance

She chose Show Me Your Mumu's Silver Sage colorway for her bridesmaids' gowns, and gave them the freedom to choose their own design from 10 that she pre-selected. "I wanted a color that would tie into the greenery of the florals and color palette, and a color that would look beautiful on all my girls," she says.

Tristan and his groomsmen opted for deep blue-toned suits from Generation Tux, which they paired with subtly polka-dotted ties and pocket squares from Show Me Your Mumu—in the same shade as the bridesmaids' dresses.

05 of 19

First Look

sara trisdan wedding couple first look kiss
This Modern Romance

The couple planned to exchange vows in private during their first look outside the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe, but changed their minds when they saw each other, deciding instead to include the vows in their ceremony. "There's so much excitement getting ready, so I was dying to see Trisdan," says Sara. "I knew once I saw him and gave him a huge hug I would feel much more relaxed."

Trisdan felt the same way: "I was quite anxious to get the day on its feet, so to speak," he says. "When the first look finally took place, I was beaming ear to ear, and became overcome with emotions—primarily in the joy of knowing we would be spending our lives together."

06 of 19

A Family Affair

sara trisdan wedding dogs wearing greenery wreaths
This Modern Romance

Sara and Trisdan's dogs, Suri and Ziggy, participated in the ceremony as "flower children;" the wore leafy garlands around their collars.

07 of 19

Modern Arch

sara trisdan wedding white arch with warm tones floral decorations
This Modern Romance

Back Up Backdrops provided a rounded white arch that the couple decorated with an asymmetrical arrangement of flowers and leaves, including palm fronds, fan-shaped accents, rich orange foliage, and ivory-and-mauve blooms.

08 of 19

Saying "I Do"

sara trisdan wedding ceremony on lawn
This Modern Romance

An acoustic guitarist performed popular tunes, including "Ho Hey" by The Lumineers, as the bridal party processed down the aisle and Sam Smith's "Latch" as Sara and her father walked toward the altar.

The couple's best friend officiated the non-religious ceremony, which included, says Sara, "a couple silly lyric choices from a Slightly Stoopid song—the concert where we had our first kiss." The newlyweds then exited the service to Bob Marley's "Is This Love."

09 of 19


sara trisdan wedding cocktail menu with watercolor dog paintings
This Modern Romance

The couple's pups took a starring role at the cocktail hour, with two signature drinks named after them: "'The Suri' was a spicy skinny margarita, and 'The Ziggy' was a Moscow mule," says Sara. As the couple posed for portraits with their bridal party and family, guests were treated to coconut shrimp, bao buns, and brie and fig tarts.

10 of 19

Beach, Please

sara trisdan wedding beach bums station with escort card towels
This Modern Romance

In a nod to their "Beach Bums" party vibe, Sara and Trisdan set up a thematic escort wall with the help of the team at Amorology, who planned and designed the event: Guests found their seating assignments attached to plush Turkish towels in coral, blue, and gray striped patterns.

11 of 19

Breezy Attitude

sara trisdan wedding reception outdoor tables with chandeliers
This Modern Romance

An open-air tent housed tassel and rattan chandeliers in a variety of shapes and sizes, which hung over long, bare wooden tables and rounds dressed with velvet cloths.

12 of 19

Center of Attention

sara trisdan wedding reception round table with pastel decorations
This Modern Romance

Low centerpieces arranged in gold, terra cotta, and other natural vessels showed off oversized white, blush, and peach-colored blooms positioned against deep green foliage.

13 of 19

So Much Seating

sara trisdan wedding outdoor reception set up with wicker seated chairs
This Modern Romance

The couple decided to mix and match the seating, using mint and white wooden wishbone-style chairs alongside plush, mid-century-inspired alternatives in orange or blue velvet.

14 of 19

Color Story

sara trisdan wedding reception plate setting with burnt orange napkin
This Modern Romance

Wooden chargers contrasted with cream-and-sage dinner and salad plates, while glassware with gold or blush accents coordinated with rose gold flatware. Napkins in sienna or sage matched the chairs at each table.

15 of 19

Plant Life

sara trisdan wedding wooden vase table number with greenery
This Modern Romance

Light wood vases holding dark green palm fronds served as table numbers, combining the tropical foliage element with the natural earth tones of the couple's aesthetic.

16 of 19

Piece of Cake

three tiered modern wedding cake
This Modern Romance

A chocolate salted caramel cake from Hey There, Cupcake! had "an organic and beachy feel" with sienna, aqua, and cream-colored detailing that referenced the watercolors on the invitation.

17 of 19

Sweet Stuff

sara trisdan wedding desserts on wooden decorative trays
This Modern Romance

The couple also served carefully decorated maracons, mini salted carmel cheesecake, mini tarts, and cream puffs as part of an elegant dessert spread.

18 of 19

So in Love

sara trisdan wedding couple portrait of smiling faces
This Modern Romance

After all the planning that went into their wedding day, Sara and Trisdan agree some of the most memorable moments were the ones shared with family and friends on the dance floor and during the speeches. "With so many details, decisions to be made, and opinions coming your way, it's easy to get overwhelmed by it all," says Sara. "Once the day is here, though, and you see how everything comes together so organically and beautifully, there is no better feeling. Make sure to slow yourself down and take in the moments. The day flies by, so be present and enjoy every minute."

19 of 19


sara trisdan wedding couple holding hands
This Modern Romance

Photography, This Modern Romance
Venue and Catering, The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe
Event Planning and Design, Amorology
Flowers, The Dainty Lion
Videography, Current Films
Stationery, Four Things Paper
Cake, Hey There, Cupcake!
Music, Encore Event Entertainment
Rentals, Adore Folklore; Back Up Backdrops; BBJ; Bright Event Rentals; Borrowed Blu; Hostess Haven
Bride's Gown, Rue de Seine
Bride's Accessories, Sam Edelman shoes; Twigs and Honey hairpins
Hair and Makeup, Thorne Artistry
Bridesmaids' Dresses, Show Me Your Mumu
Groom's and Groomsmens' Attire, Generation Tux
Lighting, Bright Rentals
Rings, John Matty Co.

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