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Sarah and Anson
After meeting during a medical school happy hour at a Denver brewery, Sarah and Anson bonded within seconds over the discovery of a mutual friend. What began as a friendship for them soon evolved into something more. "I was struck by how calm, honest, and easy-going he was," says Sarah, "When he decided to make a move, it was obvious that our connection went beyond friendship."
After two-and-a-half years of dating, the pair was vacationing in Kauai, Hawaii, when Anson decided to pop the question. "I really wanted to propose on the beach at sunset," he recalls, "but as soon as we sat down it started pouring rain, so we had to run under the cover of a palm tree and I proposed there." Sarah said yes, and the two began planning their wedding with the help of Coastyle Events. They fell in love with the Inn at Rancho Santa Fe in California with picturesque vistas and quintessential California ambience. On April 30, 2016, Sarah and Anson tied the knot and celebrated with 148 guests, incorporating colorful, citrus touches along the way.
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The couple's citrus-colored stationery suite was by Rifle Paper Co. for Paperless Post. "The landscape of the inn is green and beautiful, so we wanted to choose colors that fit will with it," says Sarah. "We both also love the freshness of fruits—especially peaches, tangerines, lemons, and limes." Each envelope was calligraphed by The Bloomery Co. and featured a hand-painted tangerine created by the bride's friend.
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"I tried on a lot of dresses," says Sarah. "I had seen Mira Zwillinger's dresses in photos, and knew I wanted to try on her ethereal, feminine gowns." Flying to New York City to find her dress, Sarah chose a tulle number with intricate hand-embroidered leaf detailing and tulle skirt. Sarah wore Stuart Weitzman heels, with her mother's diamond studs serving as her "something borrowed."
"I wanted my bridesmaids to be able to choose a dress that fit their personality and budget," says Sarah of the assorted floor-length gray dresses, two of which the bridesmaids already owned.
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Sarah's wedding planners, Jillian Ziska and Ashley Noack from Coastyle Events, gifted the bride and her mother floral handkerchiefs inside little illustrated tangerine-topped boxes, which read "for your tears of joy".
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Sarah and Anson had their service at The Village Church with a performance from their string trio, Caprice Strings. The bride entered with her father to Pachelbel's "Canon in D" as Anson waited for her at the altar. Both Sarah and Anson's grandmothers—who are both in their nineties—also walked in the processional. The bride's college roommate read "I Carry Your Heart" by e.e. cummings. The pair exchanged traditional vows and later recessed to "Here Comes The Sun" by The Beatles.
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A rosé wine bar offered three different options, each labeled with a watercolored tangerine to easily identify tasting notes.
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Guests played lawn games like bocce and cornhole, as well as board games during cocktail hour.
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One of Sarah's bridesmaids painted a watercolor poster for guests to sign in lieu of a traditional guest book. The stethoscope and heart motif was chosen because of the couple's professions in the medical field.
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Due to rainy weather earlier in the day, a clear tent was set up for the reception, which still allowed the beautiful scenery to be viewed. Wooden chairs and tables were set with vibrant centerpieces and lots of candleholders.
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"In keeping with Japanese tradition, my family and friends made 1,000 origami cranes for good luck," says the bride. "My mom made most of them, with help from other family members—even my dad made some! At my bachelorette party, each girl made a gold crane, so those ones represent my closest pals."
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The newlyweds danced to "Nothing Can Change This Love" by Sam Cooke for their first dance. Sarah also shared a special dance with her father to "My Girl" by The Temptations, while Anson danced with his mother to "A Song for My Son" by Mikki Viereck.
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"We have been to so many weddings where the cake is passed around on plates and left untouched. Anson and I love dessert, and we really wanted to provide delicious options and variety," says Sarah of the dessert table. Instead of one cake, guests were offered banana, carrot, and coconut confections from Come On In! Café. "Our donut bar was also a huge hit," says the bride, "donuts were being devoured faster than they could be replaced!" VG Donut & Bakery baked an assortment of chocolate, glazed, old-fashioned, and coconut treats, as well as buttermilk, crumb, and spiced donut bites.
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A Special Gift
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Photography, Shewanders Photography
Location and Catering, The Inn at Rancho Santa Fe
Event planning, Coastyle Events
Flowers, Flowers Annette Gomez
Videography, Quixotic Pictures
Stationery, Paperless Post
Calligraphy, The Bloomery Co.
Cake, Come On In Café
Donuts, VG Donut & Bakery
Bride's gown, Mira Zwillinger
Bride's shoes, Stuart Weitzman
Hair, Emiliano DePasqual
Bridesmaids' Hair, Audra Rene
Makeup, Elizabeth Root
Groom's suit and accessories, J.Crew
Transportation, San Diego Charter Company