Take a second and remember what you were like at 4 and 5 years old. It was a great day if you had playtime, yummy snacks, and finding your sleeping mat. For Amanda and Derek, they were starting their journey of finding their soulmates. These love birds went from playing sports together to then reconnecting after high school. It’s safe to say they had a strong foundation with a lifetime of friendship and memories. Amanda and Derek’s love story is one for the books, as was their recent wedding at the Condor’s Nest in California. Their wedding feature is full of inspiration for the boho bride-to-be. We especially love all the DIY details from the flowers to the cake. Amanda wears her Ophelia two-piece wedding dress. We feel she couldn’t have chosen a more perfect dress to match her personality. She looks incredible.
Amanda loves hot air balloons, and was on a work trip in las vegas, and was surprised with a hot air balloon ride with a few of her co-workers… when she should up to the ride, Derek popped out of the hot air balloon basket to go on the trip with her. He proposed mid-air on the journey.
The Wedding Dress
Before being engaged, I came across Dreamers & Lovers on instagram and had my wedding dress picked out before marriage was even talked about, haha. I know what I like when I see it 😉
Yes, we wrote our vows, I think my favorite line would be me telling Derek, “you are not only the best person in my life, but you are the best person in everyone’s life around you.” HE IS SO LOVED!!!
The Must-Have Detail
I dreamed of having a rug aisle for the ceremony that we were able to rent from witty rentals.
Advice for Future Brides
Make it as simple as possible for yourself, and take all the help you can get! LOL
There were 140 guests!
The Wedding Cake
The bride’s mother made both cupcakes and wedding cake. The wedding cake was carrot with cream cheese frosting, all homemade so yummy 🙂
Everything was perfect! More than we could’ve imagined, it was so awesome to see it all come together, knowing how much love went into every detail. Our thank you gifts were hand-painted rocks that we all helped out with; this took months to get done!
The Next Chapter
We are ready to enjoy life! 2 weeks after the wedding, Amanda and Derek put together a brand new salon for the bride and her three business partners, then traveled to Bali for three weeks!! We are excited to enjoy each other.
All of our flowers and arrangements were artificial and silk! Besides the greenery. The bride’s cousin put them all together!
It was the best day of our lives, and we partied all night with our friends and family!!!!We wish we could relive this day over and over again.
To view Amanda’s dress, as well as other two-piece wedding dresses. See here
Have you ever dated long distance? What if that distance span continents? This is how Noel and Kyle started their romance. In a year they became fast friends. They spent every day together talking, laughing, and getting to know each other. Then that moment came. The moment Noel had to tell Kyle that she would be spending a significant amount of time in Paris. While a dreamy place, the angst, and longing must have been real. What would become of their relationship? Could they pick up where they had left off? As fate would have it, Kyle wound up receiving lessons on the magic of Paris through Skype. When Noel returned to America, they both knew something had changed. Their friendship led to love and here is their story to show that we exist for LOVE.
“Kyle heard all about the magic that is chocolat chaud (hot chocolate rich enough to eat with a spoon!)”….yummmmm
How did they meet?
Through our undergrad years, Kyle and I would take the train every day to our college. One day, Kyle broke the ice with a friendly hello and a chat about what classes I was taking. We became fast friends and would spend our daily commute often talking and laughing, learning more about one another, and building our rapport. After about a year of friendship, I went off to Paris for a quarter abroad. During my Paris adventure, we would skype…alllllll the time! Kyle heard all about the magic that is Chocolat Chaud (hot chocolate rich enough to eat with a spoon!) and I got to hear all about his first internship with a major biotech company. When I got back, we both knew something had changed and we’ve been together ever since.
The Wedding Dress
Let me start off by saying how much of an incredibly picky person I am. I wish I wasn’t so particular, but I am! It’s in my DNA lol. My dress needed to be classic but still fun, elegant and timeless, but still whimsical. I wanted to feel absolutely beautiful, comfortable, and most importantly, like ME on my wedding day. I had tried on wedding dresses at many places before finally finding my perfect dress at Dreamers & Lovers. Everyone at D&L was so kind and welcoming and made me feel so at ease throughout the entire process. My dress, the Vivienne, was everything I had ever wanted and more. It was perfect!
Reading at the Ceremony
We had a very intimate wedding in front of a waterfall in Iceland. Our ceremony was officiated by an Icelandic Humanist wedding officiant who was absolutely amazing! She got to know us through skype conversations for a few months before our wedding and she made our ceremony so personal and true to our relationship. One of my favorite readings she did was of an Icelandic poem that she surprised us with on the day. She recited it in both Icelandic and English and it was so beautiful!
We wrote them together a few nights before the ceremony. It was the middle of the night, we were in a very cold car, in the middle of nowhere in Iceland, waiting to see the Northern Lights. Things got deep! But we still kept a note of playfulness–anyone who knows us, knows we love to laugh! Of all of it though, I just love the sincerity of our vows.
We had such a small wedding that we only worked with a few vendors–our hotel, our photographers, and D&Ls! I can’t speak highly enough about how amazing it was to work with these businesses–I wanted a relaxed wedding and they all made that possible. Kyle and I were able to focus on just each other on our wedding day which was such an incredible gift.
Going Against the Grain and Following your Heart
This one might sound silly, but it was definitely against the grain for our ‘life plans’ and was totally a heart-led decision. About 8 months before our wedding, Kyle and I got a puppy! Yes, a little anticlimactic, but it was a big deal for us! We had always wanted a dog and were looking forward to getting one in the future sometime, but not for a while… and especially not while we were planning our wedding, one that was going to take place thousands of miles away, in the wilderness, in a foreign country! Well, as fate would have it, we were meant to get our little fluff ball much sooner (I mean, once you see the perfect pup, how can you say no to it???). It was a leap, and we have never looked back since welcoming our little Ro pup into our lives.
Advice for Future Brides
Your wedding should be about your relationship, about your love for each other, your commitment. Do what makes you and your husband happy and don’t get bogged down by the things that don’t matter. No one is going to remember the chairs! (Side note–we didn’t even have chairs at our ceremony!). Be present and–my favorite piece of advice given to me by a dear friend–look into each other’s eyes. 🙂
Kyle loves to make me laugh! We knew we were going to get married (we had been talking about it for quite some time) and on Halloween, he proposed wearing a giant, inflatable T-rex costume! It was ridiculous and hilarious and perfect.
The Wedding Guests
We had our parents and our siblings with us for the ceremony and dinner. There were 10 of us in total.
The Wedding Cake/Desserts
We had a traditional Icelandic wedding cake called Kransekake. It is a cake made up of rings of marzipan sponge cake and covered in delicate icing. One of the traditions that we were told is that the bride and groom are supposed to break off a ring of cake together and however many rings they break off is how many children they will have. On our first attempt, we broke off seven…oops.
So hard to choose! My dress (!), my coat/mittens/cashmere stockings (it was cold!), the pearl earrings my mother gave me, my husband zipping me up into my dress (we got ready together), the Takis we shared in the back of the Superjeep we took adventuring after our ceremony…ALL OF IT! 🙂
We thought it was going to be telling our families that we were going to get married in Iceland, but they were all so supportive and onboard. It was great! It was probably getting all of our documents ready for our wedding in a foreign country–not for the faint of heart!
The Next Chapter
Savoring life’s special little moments, going on more adventures, playing with our pup…who knows what the future holds!
The Wedding Flowers
They were beautiful and simple. White and ivory roses, lots of greens.
It was just the most magical day! An amazing way to begin our next chapter together.
Their romance blossomed after happy hour, and ignited a journey of happiness which involves traveling the country in a renovated school bus and getting married on Lake Superior, with their 10 nearest and dearest in tow. Everything about their intimate elopement wedding day speaks natural and simple beauty!! The bride, Laura added long sleeves to her simple white wedding dress, and it is magical.
Tell us, how did you meet? I moved to California from Minneapolis in 2010 for grad school. My grad-school roommate was from Redondo Beach and suggested moving there after school. James was high school friends with my roommate, so we met through him. I ended up driving James home from the Pier after happy hour one time, and we stopped for a drink together on our way home, and the rest is history.
Tell us about finding your wedding dress: James and I have been traveling in a renovated school bus for the last 14 months. (instagram @shortbustamove) We were traveling on the east coast when I was shopping for dresses. I looked online, and all of my searches kept bringing me to Dreamers & Lovers. My mom, bless her heart, tried to coordinate having dresses shipped to me while traveling, but I didn’t have a permanent address or even a mirror to try them on. My only mirror was at Planet Fitness – ha! So I decided to fly out to California for 24 hours. I had been living in Torrance for 8 years prior to our trip, so I was able to bring some of my friends shopping with me. I had only one appointment set up, Dreamers & Lovers. I knew I wanted a dress from D&L, and I was only in town long enough for this one appointment. So I said, “this is it, I’m finding a dress here”. I wasn’t surprised at all that I was able to find my perfect dress at D&L.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? My brother officiated the ceremony, which was one of the most special parts of the wedding. The ceremony in general was non-denominational, though drew from various spiritual themes and traditions. My husband and I come from different religious backgrounds, so my brother was able to weave these into the ceremony. He built a traditional Jewish Chuppah, a canopy that represents the couple’s new life together. Traditionally, a chuppah must be a temporary structure created by hand (my brother). It’s open to the sky above as a connection with ancestors, and open on all four sides to represent hospitality. The is a covering, depicting God is all around us, one/flowing.
Photographer: Alina Kay
He cleansed the area with sage, and had us all take a rock from lake superior to hold for the ceremony. After the ceremony, we returned the rocks to the lake with a message of thanks to nature. He also used the theme of ancestors throughout the ceremony, which made the ceremony pretty emotional. He spoke of ancestors being a bridge between the past and present. He led us in a guided reflection on our ancestors. All married family members also shared “what marriage means to you”.
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line?We did write our own vows… we tried to keep them light, but with meaningful to both of us.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding?My photographer. I loved all of the details, including my dress and flowers, and she was able to capture everything so beautifully in such a natural style.
What advice do you have for other future-brides currently planning a wedding? Keep it simple. Spend time on things that will be meaningful to you and your spouse, rather than the “extras”. Spend money on a good photographer – it’s worth it.
Tell us all about the proposal- There wasn’t one! We had planned on getting married while on our trip, and we wanted family to be there, so we decided to get married last summer on the North Shore of Lake Superior with our family 🙂
How many guests did you have?– 10, parents and siblings. My brother officiated.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert? Simple, 8 inch round, white textured. I had my florist make a topper for the cake.
What was your favorite detail of the wedding? MY DRESS!! I’m still getting compliments.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Figuring out logistics while on the road.
What’s next for you as a couple? We just finished our year of travel, and we will be moving to Minnesota. I grew up there and my family is there. I’m a little nervous for James – he’s lived in Redondo Beach his entire life! It’s going to be cold!
Tell us about your wedding flowers? Flora North was amazing to work with. They matched my dream of having moody colors in a natural environment. The flowers were natural, moody and dramatic.
Hanna and Matthias’ picture perfect Cathedral Park wedding was planned in a way that can only be labeled spontaneous. It took them all of 3 months to DIY and dream together the deliciously boho tidbits and touches of their oh-so-boho, laid back wedding. And it all turned out just as they’d wanted.
The venue…which was almost as breathtaking as Hanna in her comfortable wedding dress from D&L, was booked a jaw-dropping week before the day, without them even having visited the site.
The photo-book of Hanna and Matthias’ special day tells the tale of how simple additions, a light copper arch dressed with moody boho blooms, greenery dressed blackboards with hand-chalked notes on love, along with the ultimate venue and the ultimate boho wedding dress go a very long way toward making that perfect day a reality.
Using the Gothic bridge supports in Portland, Oregon’s Cathedral Park as their ‘chapel’ was a stroke of genius from the couple and shots of the small group of attendees under the huge archways of St. John’s Bridge, with the gorgeous parkland’s behind, look like something out of a fairytale.
The concrete backdrop of their ceremony spot was beautifully offset with simple bohemian touches, the arch mentioned earlier, a small Persian rug for the pair to stand on as they took their vows, a copper bar cart and an assortment of minimal copper candlesticks, greenery and copper goblet and saucer for their communion wine and bread.
It was the ceremony, which really stood out as the most memorable for this happy couple, especially when the March sun decided to show its face during the proceedings, as if the day was designed for them. A particularly sweet moment was when the officiant ask the couple to turn and look at the loved ones present at the ceremony, saying:
“These are your people. These people know you and love you and have come here today to celebrate and bless this marriage. You have a history with them, relationships with them, and intimacy with them. You are very rich people to have these friends and family. And they really love you a lot. ”
Olivia Strohm Photography did a remarkable job of capturing the couple in authentic bohemian style. I particularly enjoyed the shots taken with the Blockhouse’s neighbor, Pomarius nursery, as backdrop, complete with terracotta pots, waiting to be filled and a selection of flowers the couple didn’t have to order and pay for…the result was a feast of natural moments that truly exemplifies the couple’s feelings for one another. Even better, Olivia was always there, encouraging the couple to snog, which both of them really appreciated!
Speaking of the Blockhouse, this quaint event space served the pair’s reception needs just fine and them and their guests were able to settle down to craft beers, good ol’ fashioned burgers, fries and doughnuts…it goes to show, you needn’t pay for a whopping 5 course spread to keep your guests happy.
Hanna fixed all the stationary her creative self and the couple brought in less than a handful of vendors. At the end of the day it was about simple, timeless boho touches along with the love and laughs that they and their nearest and dearest brought to the table.
In their own words:
“We wanted our wedding to be a celebration of God’s sovereignty in our relationship and in the relationships that have and will support us as we grow together. Ultimately, we wanted to mob around and explore an unfamiliar city with our closest friends and family and make new memories as we kicked off this new season of our lives!“
The Sparks didn’t fly the first time at the coffee shop, but it did on the second encounter. Share in their dreamy warehouse wedding in downtown Los Angeles, and his on-point navy blue suit, and her backless lace simple wedding gown.
Lisa and Kyle had met before, while working at the Campus Coffee Shop at Loyola Marymount University…but that didn’t really result in any sparks. The second time they met, at a party during the weekend before junior year, something in the stars made itself known. After that chance encounter came many more, so called ‘accidental’ encounters, which seemed to be happening a little too regularly to be mere coincidence. It then so happened that the pair, along with a large group of friends, planned to go on a hiking trip. Oddly enough, every single person in the group called to cancel…only Lisa and Kyle were left and destiny, it seems, was written. The couple didn’t follow suit and cancel though, rather, they took up the opportunity for a first date and… Things have never been the same since. The proposal happened on a day that made Lisa even more keenly aware that she’d landed on a catch who’d see her through thick and thin, who she could count on to be by her side through life’s trials and uncertainties…it was the day the of the 2017 Women’s March in Downtown LA. The couple had spent the morning at the march, had lunch and then went to Vista Hermosa Park, where Kyle took the plunge and proposed! Lisa obviously accepted, all that was left to do was plan the big day…and live their love for good!
When it came to finding the perfect, totally boho wedding dress, Lisa couldn’t help but be entranced the moment she came across Dreamer & Lover’s lovely and very aptly named, Lisa simple wedding gown on Instagram. Right away she scheduled a visit to the Dreamers and Lovers Studio with her mom, to try on a selection of three low-key simple wedding gowns, one of which was obviously her namesake. With more than a subtle instinct about the rightness of the Lisa dress, Lisa arranged that she try that one on last, good move, since it was Lisa that had her in tears the minute she stepped into it. The deal was officially sealed and Lisa had found the ONE…it was Lisa, lol! 95 Nearest and dearest were invited to an intimate wedding that, for the couple, needed to incorporate things that made sense in the context of their relationship. This was an intention that saw the plans deviating rather heavily from tradition at times and explaining the WHY to their largely traditional families was something of a challenge for the couple. Luckily, at the end of it all, their respective families saw the beauty in it all, only to come to appreciate it, as they did, for the intention behind it. The couple decided to write their own vows, more than that…they wrote two sets! One set was more personal and got read during first look and the other set was read in front of friends and family at the ceremony. Their favorite phrase was, “ to fill our life with adventure and our home with laughter/ to encourage you to grow as an individual and inspire you to do so/ to love you completely.”
Other than that, one of the couple’s favorite poems, Kyle’s sister read ‘I carry your heart with me,’ by EE Cummings. The poem found a place in their combined heart when they had had to endure a long distance summer love one year. And…To honor the families and heritage of both lovers, the couple took turns reciting lines in English and Spanish, during their vows. Lisa had a lot of fun with her chosen vendors, she felt inspired by their creativity and felt that getting to know the unique individuals who poured so much of their heart and soul into making her day perfect was one of the most rewarding parts f the day, for sure! Flowers were done and mastered by Sophie Ballmer of Sybil Sophia, who grasped and perfectly executed Lisa’s desire for tons of greenery with subtle shows of white. Even more astounding and perfect was the way Sophie incorporated white orchids into the bouquet mix, since Lisa is of Guatemalan heritage and the La Monja Blanca white orchid is actually Guatemala’s national flower. One of the best things for the couple was that people really noticed the effort they had put into making their boho Los Angeles wedding original and uniquely their own. One such effort was the adorable, customized papel picado flags they ordered, which had their names on! The colorful flags came out so great that many of the guests took them home as souvenirs, awesome!
For dessert, the pair opted for mini doughnuts and conchas, which are a delicious Mexican specialty that is like a sweet, enriched bread roll with cookie dough like topping and a shell pattern on top, yumbles! Lisa highly recommends that laid-back-bride-to-be’s opt for a month-of coordinator, as so many possible stress factors arose during the days leading up to their boho dream day, such as rain, for example, that she doesn’t think she would have survived in one piece without the welcome assistance of an industry pro.
Lisa told us that she now understands why they say your wedding day is one of the happiest days of your life! The couple were absolutely thrilled with the way everything turned out on the day, to have so many people from so many different stages and aspects of their lives come together and celebrate on a day that was completely their own was just priceless.
Also major love for their warehouse wedding venue at the Unique Space in downtown Los Angeles. We think it’s the perfect spot to host an intimate small wedding for boho brides. The interior spaces all goes great with the bride’s simple wedding gown.
As for the future, well…in between the endless joys of building and savoring a life together, this pair still have their honeymoon coming up, as it was postponed. Now they’re just eagerly counting down the days before they get to leave on a romantic tour of beautiful Panama! All the very best, you guys!! MWAH! Photographer : This duo happens to be one of our favorites, based in LA and has now shot so many of our brides’ wedding. Isaiah Taylor Photography.