If you have never heard before, it is good luck if it rains on your wedding day. Maybe it was not luck that made for such a beautiful and enjoyable wedding, but maybe luck did play a small role in providing the gorgeous backdrop and smooth and happy day. There was a yellow-green magnolia tree that was as tall as an oak tree. There were cherry blossoms and lilacs, pinks and purples, vibrant green grasses and white skies. It was a beautiful day full of smiles and love.
The Bride's first dress was knee high in the front, with a long and billowing tule train trailing her. She wore solid white ankle boots. She also wore short and lace gloves with gold bracelets at the ruffled cuff. You could clearly see her soft pink nail polish. She wore a white fur (or faux fur) shawl, with a large crystal pendant on the front. Pins, especially with crystal and rhinestones, should come back into style. She was rad and gorgeous, a modern, retro bride. Love!
At their wedding, some of the unique and fun ideas were:
* The father of the bride decorated the couple's hood with a Hello Kitty Bride and Groom, and also the word LOVE, and also pink puffy roses. Adorable.
*They did the bouquet toss and garter toss at the ceremony venue instead of at the reception venue.
* They were prepared for the rain with a huge and white, ruffly parasol.
* The Bridesmaids wore paper rose corsages on their wrists. They were puffy and were stylized, but felt real.
Malia Jeanne Photography
As a wedding photographer, I have seen some clever and fun ideas. On September 12th, we were in Santa Clara with one of the funnest couples that I have had the pleasure to photograph. At their engagement shoot, they brought many handmade props and outfit choices to choose from, and their energy level was nothing short of radiant. I knew, heading into their wedding day, that their special day was going to be amazing. And it was amazing, with a winning combination of beauty and fun.
The Bride's dress fit her perfectly. It was a shoulder-less gown, with a sweetheart neckline and long train of tulle and lace. It had crystals and lacework on the form-fitting bodice. She had a very long veil in the early part of the day, and as the wind picked it up behind her, their were gasps of awe from the onlookers. Her hair was elegantly swept up, showing off her teardrop crystal earrings.
In the early part of the day, the Groom read a letter for his Bride-To-Be. It was three pages long, and it was on video for her to hear after they were married. It was so sweet and touching. They had met in kindergarten. The letter was about his love for her. He reminisced about the moment when he wanted to marry her. As he read it, he teared up, and so did we.
There were many fun and unique things about their wedding, such as a surprise flash mob performance by the Bride for her Groom during the reception. The Groom had a surprise performance himself. He serenaded her with his cello, and that was the first time she had ever heard him play. They strapped money to the garter belt, during the garter toss, to motivate the men to want to catch it a bit more than they naturally would have. That was a great and unique idea. Their photo shoot was incredibly fun and entirely unique. I can say for sure, they have photos of their wedding day that no one else in the world has, that are truly original. We laughed and had such a great time.
But hands down my favorite fun and unique idea that I saw at their wedding was: the Bride and Groom had made large cutouts of their own faces, making silly faces, as dance props on the dance floor. They were about one and a half feet by two feet, and cut in an oval shape. There were two pairs, and the guests had a ton of fun passing them around and dancing with them. It was so fun and looked amazing in photos.
One tradition that I cannot get enough of is the performance of Mariachi bands at Mexican weddings. During the cocktail hour, they bring a liveliness and romantic ambiance to the hour. During the reception, each table is made to feel special as they are serenaded separately with a live and colorful performance of strings and horns, and also amazing singing.
A couple weeks ago, I was blessed to document the special day of a wonderful bride. She was not only stunning, but she was kind, relaxed, and terrific to be around. She was drop-dead gorgeous in her mermaid cut wedding gown. It was shoulder-less, with a sweetheart neckline. It had beautiful crystal beads decorating the bodice. She wore Swarovski chandelier earrings, which her husband had given her for Christmas, but she had saved wearing them for that occasion. It was a warm September's day, and her veil, which was trimmed with crystals, was glowing in the daylight during the couple's photo shoot.
During the ceremony, a Mariachi band rang out as she graced down the isle of the church.
One unique and fun thing I saw at their wedding was: her husband wore a white Mariachi suit that was made special for their day. He was a member of the Mariachi band that was performing on their day, making the band's performance and presence that much more special. On the sleeve of the Groom's suit,
it had the couple's initials inside a horseshoe: Y and S, with a heart in between. It was by far the fanciest Groom's suit I had ever seen, with metal adornments on his jacket and pants. It had a horseshoe belt, and charro tie. Of course, at the reception he serenaded her in front of all the guests. He was fantastic.
Click here to see an example of a Mariachi band playing the Marcha Nupcial, or the Wedding March
Click here to learn more about the history of Mariachi
Malia Jeanne Wedding Photography
My husband and I bought a cute home in Tracy this summer. Within all the chaos of sanding and painting, working and working, my blog got behind. Since all of the weddings we shot over the last few months had cool and unique ideas, I would like to work backwards now, showcasing the neat ideas I saw as a wedding photographer.
Last weekend we were in the South Bay at a beautiful venue called Cinnibar. I was excited to get to shoot there again, since it is a lovely venue with rolling green hills and oak trees. The Bride looked amazing in her off-the-shoulders ball gown and crystal bohemian headband, worn across her forehead and under her hair. Her Groom looked sharp in his form fitting tux and coral boutonniere and socks.
As they said their vows under a sunset of pink billowy clouds, hummingbirds danced with butterflies, and the gentle wind carried sweeping birds behind them.
During their ceremony, there was a single white rose on the table behind them. The Mother of the Bride and Mother of the Groom brought up a single rose for each for their children. The Bride and Groom held onto the rose as the minister talked about how the single rose is the symbol of love, which made me think. I had never thought about it before, but I do agree that a single rose is far more meaningful than a dozen. The bride and groom put their single roses together with the white rose on the table. I thought this was a beautiful and unique way to symbolically joining the families together.
The Groom's family was from Paris. In fact, they had flown in and did not speak English. During the reception there was a translator for the Mother's speech. And during the Father of the Bride's speech and during the games, the Groom's family was given papers with the translation. This worked out very well.
Games are not uncommon at weddings, but they had fun and unique games that I had never seen before.
The first game they played was with popping balloons:
It was a loud and exciting game. The crowd went wild.
Another unique game they played was a musical chairs scavenger hunt:
Last weekend I was in the South Bay. It was a sunny seventy degrees, a beautiful California day. The bride looked like an actress. Her doll-like face was half hidden behind her vintage-inspired birdcage veil. The back of her gown was covered in jewels, sparkling in the sunlight. Her train was a cascade of tulle. She looked fabulous as she struck a pose on the pearl-colored Maserati.
One neat idea I saw at their wedding was: the bride had picked out the fabric for the groom and groomsmen ties, and she had the ties custom made just for the wedding. The men looked sly in their quatrefoil ties. This personal touch made their wedding more unique and stylish.
Malia Jeanne Wedding Photography
I had a lot of fun at the last wedding. As a wedding photographer, I get to meet some really great people. Everyone is genuinely smiling and always looking so fabulous. This last one was a large group of people, and they were lively and endearing. The whole day was quite magical.
The Bride was elegant in her strapless sweetheart-cut lace gown, with her hair swept up, and glittering drop-down diamond necklace. And she was as nice as she was gorgeous.
I saw many fun and unique things at their wedding. Some of my favorites were:
The reception was beautiful and a lot of fun. The high energy music was complimented with a high energy crowd. There were so many smiles. Everyone was having a marvelous time. The sister of the bride was extra gracious, going out of her way numerous times to make sure everyone was having a great time, which we were! During the reception, glow bracelets and necklaces, and light changing batons, and neon sunglasses were handed out. These were so much fun to dance with! I really liked the Styrofoam, light changing batons. I only wished that I had had some at my own wedding. So cool!
Click here to see an example of glow batons
Malia Jeanne Wedding Photography
As a wedding photographer, I have been lucky to get to witness many traditions. Last weekend I was lucky enough to get to shoot a wedding rich with Ethiopian culture. It was a very fun wedding with many smiles. The bride was stunning in her Audrey Hepburn style, lace mermaid gown. There were diamonds in her hair. She looked like a glamorous movie star. The groom and groomsmen were wearing metallic vests, which looked really good on camera.
One fun and very unique thing I saw at this wedding was the lack of a formal ceremony. Instead, they used modern traditions in a unique way.
When they were introduced to the room, the guests did not stay at their tables, but created a tunnel, which became a dance tunnel, which the bridal party took turns dancing through. It was fun and awesome to watch.
Then, when they were cutting the cake, a ring bearer brought the wedding rings in a small and colorful basket. The bride and groom took turns holding the rings up to the crowd, and everyone watched and cheered as they put the rings on. I loved it; the crowd loved it.
The Ethiopian music was outstanding. I was getting my groove on, with literally a hundred people on the dance floor. I thought we were going to break the floor. I made my way to the DJ. I stopped, shocked to see a live keyboardist and singer. They sounded incredible. Everyone, from the children to the grandparents, was waving their hands in the air, jumping up and down. We were shaking our shoulders, in a traditional style of dance. I learned it is called Eskista. The energy on the dance floor was full of life and love. I had a ton of fun.
Click here to see an example of Eskista
Malia Jeanne Wedding Photography
Merci, Grazie, Mahalo, Danke, and Thank You! There are many ways to say, "We appreciate your love and support!"
As a wedding photographer, I have seen so much love from every angle. Guests travel many miles; guests dress in their best clothing. They cheer and cry, listen and love.
One cute and fun accessory to consider is
Handmade Thank You Signs.
This is a modern tradition for the creative bride. It allows you to have limitless control over your theme. It screams your individual taste and style. It is a keepsake that you will undoubtedly treasure down the line. Your guests will enjoy receiving it in the mail as your official thank you.
Malia Jeanne, Wedding Photography created a board on Pinerest, with some cute ideas for thank you signs. On the day of your wedding, it will be a fun and memorable shot to get. There is an unlimited supply of creativity. You can use any theme or material. Paper is easy, and looks great in a photo. It is simple and clean. I like the idea of using glitter, but I am bias. You will have wonderful memories of creating your work of art and gratitude.
Some cute Thank You prop ideas that you can create are:
Malia Jeanne Wedding Photography
How does one keep a wedding secret? I know I would not be able to keep a straight face in the midst of planning a wedding. But a beautiful, country bride pulled off a surprise wedding, and howdy! All the details were sewn together, creating this once in a lifetime experience for the guests. As we hid behind the entrance, waiting for the wedding party to reveal its nature, it was was so exciting with love and energy.
After the very personal vows, the couple revealed the wedding's reception space, which was decorated in a country theme. The look on the guests' faces were classic. It was a mixture of shock and happiness. It was a truly amazing day for everyone there.
Some of the unique and fun ideas I saw at their wedding were:
The last wedding I shot was at a a winery in Livermore. We shot several weddings in that area this fall. The vineyards are laced with amber and orange, greens and golds.
At the last wedding the bride was drop dead gorgeous. The couple was laid back and cool. Their guests were also fun and nice to be around.
One fun and unique thing I saw at their wedding was: a relative of the groom had made an entire spread of sugary delights. It was very impressive . There were fudges, muffins, mini cupcakes, marshmallows dipped in chocolate, and cookies. There were so many different kinds of sugary treats, all made with love.