Giovanna Bonasora and Schuyler Du Bourdieu wanted to showcase their love and the beauty of Santa Barbara with European flair and plenty of attention to detail. The couple also wanted to demonstrate their strong spirituality and passion for life after a near-fatal accident a few years into their relationship.
After fortuitously meeting on a trip to Brazil to volunteer their service and care to locals in need, the couple -- both doctors of chiropractic medicine who own Rilascio, an epicenter for resourceful living -- soon realized that they had been in close proximity to each other for nearly four years, sharing mutual friends and even attending the same events.
The 120 guests gather at 10 o'clock in the morning for the ceremony. The pews were decorated by Modern Day Design with draped olive branches and bay leaves, as well as flowers inspired by the hues of the church's interior. The bundles were later repurposed for the entry gates to the reception venue.
Following the ceremony, guests are transported to lunch at Cota Street Studios, while the newlyweds drive off to the Music Academy of the West for time to reflect on their newly declared marriage and have a private photo session with their photographer, Elizabeth Messina.
Giovanna and Schuyler pose in a handful of vignettes, including a few where they release doves in a peaceful nod to their spirituality. The couple wanted to pose with the doves, as they have a special connection to birds and often find themselves being followed by doves.
The couple enjoy a platter of artisanal cheeses, figs, lemon scones, olives, organic berries, grapes, and pink champagne during a "Lover's Picnic." Antique china and flatware add a special touch to the setting. Antique ivory napkin rings feature the letters "g" and "s." And an engraved spoon had been given by its original owner to his wife on their wedding anniversary back in 1905.
Guests enjoy the beautiful Santa Barbara weather during the alfresco cocktail hour in the lower courtyard of the Santa Barbara Historical Museum. Vientos del Sur performs as waiters carry hors d'oeuvres (caramelized cipollini onion tartlet with balsamic and fresh thyme, goat cheese lollipops with dried figs and candied walnuts, and grilled shrimp rosemary skewers with pomegranate curry) for the guests.
Understated ivory linen runners and plum linen napkins soften the dark-wood tables. Each guest receives a small succulent plant on their plate as a favor -- a nod to the couple's neighborhood, which is heavily covered with the plants. Tiny manila tags tucked under each plant serve as place cards.
Photography: Elizabeth Messina
Engagement Ring and Wedding Bands: Jack Kelege, from Fibula
Rentals: Small Masterpiece; Classic Party Rentals
Lighting: Bella Vista Designs
Honeymoon Travel Arrangements: Travelworld
Makeup: Cathryn Van Breene from The Studio Agency
Hair: Sheila Stone
Dove Release: Santa Barbara Doves, 805-896-1750