An nature filled wedding at Red Tail Ranch in Ojai, California
Kristina and Max’s wedding day was filled with countless sweet and sentimental moments! Starting with their venue the Palihouse, West Hollywood, which was the location of their first kiss! Kristina and Max did an incredible job of making their wedding uniquely theirs. They incorporate both Jewish and Buddhist traditions into their ceremony, included their sweet pup Pancakes and instead of a wedding party had an Honor Party that incorporated all of their friends! They also showed of their individual styles, Kristina by wearing a custom dress from Shareen Bridal and Max by wearing a green luster suit with pink converse!
As only children friendships have taken on extra special meanings in Kristina and Max’s lives. Their friends are family. Their group of friends from across the country brought such a special feeling of community and love to the day. They contributed both of themselves and their skills to honor the couple by officiating, performing a sake ceremony, giving speeches, sing the first dancing song, performing magic tricks and more! It was such a joy to be a part of a day that was so deeply rooted in the value of friendship and love in all forms!
Erin and Jake win the award for “Smiliest Wedding.” They have two of the best grins we’ve ever seen and their joy to be marrying one another was apparent the entire day. Not only were they joyful and smiley, their guests were too. Throughout the day Ivan and I kept turning to one another in disbelief at how many cute candids we were getting. Everywhere we turned were sweet, smiley interactions! As I began working on their images I found myself beaming at my computer screen.
The Fig House in Highland Park was the perfect venue to compliment their bright, energetic personalities. The entire space is splashed with color, every inch beautifully decorated with thoughtful and vibrant details. I think it just may be my Spirit Venue! Not only are Erin and Jake fellow color lovers, they are first and foremost dancers! Erin grew up dancing, they met while dancing, and in their vows they committed to be one another’s dance partner for life! With such a deep love of dance we knew we were in for a treat with their first dance. We were blown away when they brought down the house with their dance to ‘Golden Years’ by David Bowie. Their chemistry on the dance floor was such a joy to capture and the energy they brought was shared with their guests. When a bride and groom love dancing as much as these two, people come ready to cut a rug! Everyone was dancing from Grandma to the flower girl! We loved being in the sea of guests, surrounded by music, joyful interactions and amazing dance moves.
Erin and Jake’s day contained so many of our favorite things—color, wild dancing and intentional details—but most of all their day was focused on community. From Jake’s 4 families, their 2 friend officiants, the countless hugs, sweet excited squeals and heartfelt speeches, it was clear how much Erin and Jake love and value their people and how much those people love and cherish them. Seeing these connections is always a deeply profound honor. We feel so lucky to experience and capture all the love, from the little moments like a heartfelt greeting, to the big moments like a mother-daughter dance. Wedding days never cease to bring me back to what it’s all about: the relationships we build and the love we share.
Erin and Jake, thank you for including us in your wedding. For welcoming us in to witness the relationships you’ve built and the love that you share. We are so honored to have been a part of it all. Here are some of the memories of that day. We can’t wait to share more!
Mid-February, we stepped off the plane in Colombia and were immediately swept up by Cartagena. Within minutes of leaving the airport all of my senses were invigorated: the smell of the sea, the cozy feel of humidity, the colors of the buildings, the sounds of the streets and the sweet taste of mango. The energy within the city walls was electric. It made me feel more alive, more present. Our time spent there brought me back to myself. It encouraged me to refocus on what is most important: family, friends, meaningful connections and purpose. On our first morning we wandered the colorful streets as we made our way to Casa Pestagua, where we found Alexis and Edwin. It was at this point that the reality of the weekend sank in. Not only were we here in Cartagena to celebrate Alexis and Edwin, but we were here to celebrate along with some of our nearest and dearest friends. If I had to imagine heaven, it'd be a lot like our time in Cartagena—days spent in a beautiful setting, surrounded by your favorite people with the shared intention of celebration, all the while getting to do a job that you love with the person you love most.
Oh, I could go on and on about this wedding weekend, about how humbling it was to have witnessed Alexis' and Edwin's families share their cultures, American and Colombian, with one another; about riding a chiva (party) bus through Cartagena next to the mother of the bride as we laughed hysterically and danced on cue; about how moving, heartfelt and real the vows Alexis and Edwin shared were; about how special it was to reconnect with some of my oldest friends; about how ridiculously fun the reception was, or how grateful I am for the sweet friendship that has grown between Alexis and myself. I have so much to say but what it would all be explaining is that this experience healed parts of my heart that had been aching for a long time. This wedding, the place, the people, Alexis and Edwin reminded me of what is most important at a moment when I truly needed it.
This is the story of that day in the best way I know how to tell it.