Jean and Romie wanted their wedding to be a fun, casual party celebrating their friends and family as well as their new marriage. To that end, they had some lovely details (mostly Spanish-themed, like bright reds and other warm colors; a guitarist and hand drummer; two meal stations with Paella, crab-stuffed peppers, and other yummy tapas) and ideas. Some of the things I loved, in addition to all of their gorgeous colors and details, were that they had no set seating assignments, so their guests were able to just mingle and socialize as they liked; they had a dessert bar with beautiful treats ranging from rich chocolate cake to fresh seasonal fruit; they did the majority of the portraits beforehand so that they could visit with their guests after the ceremony; and they picked a beautiful location, Gloria Ferrer on the edge of the town of Sonoma. I learned that Gloria herself is from a Spanish family who have been making wine since the 19th century, so it was a perfect theme!
I recommend going to Gloria Ferrer for a tasting and visit when you're next in the area. The view is amazing, the champagne is delicious (that's the only wine I've tried so far), and they really specialize in serving visitors to the area. Weddings take place out on the patio after the tasting room closes, and it's the perfect location - GF is on the side of a mountain that seems to have its own, super-windy micro-climate, and so the patio is sheltered just right from those late evening gusts. It also feels private, yet you can see a bit swath of the gorgeous Sonoma Valley. I love my home county!
Now, back to the fabulous wedding. Here's the bride's outfit, hanging in the GF staff office, where the ladies get ready. I loved seeing the glamor of the dress against the everyday office stuff!
And don't you just adore that Jean picked this vibrant red raw silk dress? It complemented her coloring perfectly. I knew that, as a second time bride, she wanted something different that fit her personality well, and I think this was an absolute hit!
Here's Romie getting ready. They put the groom and his sons in a strange cave kind of area. There were no mirrors! - so the guys were trying to catch glimpses of themselves in the windows, and helped each other with the straightening of bow ties and so on. Very cute!
And here's Ryan with baby Taj! Taj was born just a few months ago, and I had the honor of meeting and photographing him along with Ryan and Sara (one of Jean's daughters, and Taj's mom), back in March. He is such a handsome little guy, and his parents absolutely adore him (as does his grandmother Jean, and, okay, everyone who lays eyes on him). It was fun to see how quickly he's growing!
Also expecting is Romie's son, Ryan (so many Ryans!), and his girlfriend Susan. She looked amazing for someone so far along, and she got some good practice in holding little Taj.
And here's Sara getting ready - they were having so much fun I had to hurry them along a little bit. Jean was very calm and just radiated happiness the whole day!
One of the family shots - here's Jean and Romie with all of their kids and grandchildren!
And I can't resist posting this one of Sara and Merry, Jean's daughters. They are gorgeous, just like their mom, and so fun to photograph. And I adore their bridesmaid dresses, they even have pockets! I've been trying to figure out a reason to buy myself a dress like this, so far no fabulous parties have come up...
There was a lot of love between the extended family and friends of the couple. And the ceremony hadn't even started yet!
I love this shot of the hand-off of the rings:
The happy couple, getting married!
Jean's daughters couldn't help crying some tears of happiness at seeing their mother's joy:
Taj got a lot of kisses and attention throughout the night:
It was a wonderful party afterwards. The food was delicious! Here's Romie pointing out the Paella to his family, and Jean's little tapas plate, which allowed her to mingle and chat with ease. What a smart idea!
Jean smartly picked a local florist that she really liked, and then told them the theme and colors, and gave them free reign. That florist is Wisteria (right down the street from me, here in Santa Rosa!), and they did an amazing job! I hadn't seen their work before, but I would definitely recommend them. There were arrangements with a variety of jewel-colored flowers, including nasturtiums, roses, tulips, jasmine, and lots more, but there were also kumquats (!), and lemons incorporated into the table arrangements. I adored them! The little citrus fruits just added something wonderful to the arrangements. Here is a version of the promo pieces I am having made for Wisteria:
As always, there were a lot more photos that I wanted to share, so please check out the slideshow!
Thank you, Jean and Romie, for your kindness! I know you two will have many more happy days to share (at home and at work, together), and can't wait to see how your family continues to grow!