Traditional. Romantic. Love at sea. That was the vibe of Jess + Austin's Long Beach wedding. From the traditional Catholic church ceremony, to the reception aboard the Queen Mary (yeah -- you read that right) every part of their day was absolutely grand. But what stood out the most to us, was just how much they were truly head over heels for each other. Every moment of the day they were making each other laugh -- a very Jess + Austin thing to do. (Also, can we talk about how much we loved that Austin rocked man bun on his wedding day?!) If this couple wasn't already the cutest, Austin also surprised Jess during the reception by hopping up on stage and singing a song to her. HEART. MELTED. For all the dreamy romance sailing above the sea, take a look Jess + Austin's special day....
Ceremony: St. Bartholomew Catholic Church
Reception: The Queen Mary
Photography: Molly Lichten Photography
Florals, Coordination, and Calligraphy: Willow & Wine
Q: What was your favorite part of the wedding day?
A: You're asking me to choose just one?! But there are so many!!! All jokes aside, every moment really felt like my favorite. Let me list a few!
- Arriving at the Queen Mary Ship the day before the wedding and continuing to run into SO MANY WEDDING GUESTS early!!!! It was sooooo much fun having everyone all in one place!!
- Dancing in the limo with my incredible bridal party on the way to the church singing "Chapel of Love" on repeat.
- Walking down the aisle to my GORGEOUS husband thinking, "I get this hunk FOREVER!!!!"
- Arriving at the ship (post-ceremony), and walking into the bar of the top deck to hear everyone cheering for us as Mr. and Mrs.!
- Listening to Austin sing on stage!!! He sang "The Way You Look Tonight," and sang better than I have ever heard him sing! #proudwife
- The speeches!!!
- Running full speed at my sister to pick her up off the dance flower when she caught the bouquet!!!!
- Mingling and dancing the night away with all of my closest family and friends!
- Waking up the day after the wedding and having a huge family breakfast on the ship!
I truly cherished every second. There are so many moments that will be on replay in my head for a lifetime!
Q: What was the most stressful part of the planning process?
A: The most stressful part of the planning process was 100% the budget. I think others could agree with me on this one but I hated every aspect of this. I set a budget in the beginning and it seemed like every week something new came up without me even asking for something more. Even at the end, extra costs find their own special way of magically appearing. My tip for future brides would be to budget lower than they had a budget for so you had extra room when you needed it. Also, many venues (in California) have a tax % that they charge when it comes to the wedding DAY. Not the day you sit down and book it. So if you paid your wedding venue in FULL (made all your payments) remember there may be an extra hunk of change due at the end for your tax %! I calculated it in and it magically went up at the end. The next would be the venue. Often times the venue is the largest cost in your budget so there is the most room for error there. BUT NOW IT'S OVER AND IT WAS A BEAUTIFUL WEDDING! YAY!
Q: When envisioning your wedding what was the one most important thing to you?
A: I. Love. Music. When envisioning the wedding, the most important thing to me was having a live band. Ever since I was little, I grew up seeing live music in my hometown. It didn't matter if I was at the Rib Cook-Off in Reno, Night-in-the-Country in Yerington, or an event at my house in Verdi-- we were always dancing the night away. Something about live music brings people alive and I knew that would make our night unforgettable! :) I also was stuck on having a saxophone player (it's so romantic)!
Q: What is something you wish someone had told you going into the wedding process? Or perhaps, the best piece of advice someone did tell you?
A: The best advice I received was to relax and ENJOY every moment. From the night before with all the girls, to waking up and getting ready, to taking pictures, to actually walking down the aisle and getting married-- SOAK. IT. UP!!!! This day only happens once and you plan it for sooooo long!!!!!!! Don't stress. Starting the day before- put all possible drama to the back burner and have the time of your life. This is your weekend. Your day. Your party. It is about you and the groom so flirt with him and dance the night away. :-)
Aren't they the cutest?! Grand. Romantic. Classic. Timeless. Their day was jaw-dropping at every turn. Also, did you catch her seashell bag at the end?! Every inch of us over here that dreamed of being the Little Mermaid when we grew up is dying at this right now. Jess and Austin, thank you for entrusting us with your special day. It was an absolute honor to be a part of it.