Dear readers (do I have any? Bueller. Bueller.),
I’ve always wanted to do a time capsule post – something that summarized the previous year for me to reflect back on and appreciate it all that much more. And, since I am finding myself with more time on my hands, I thought now would be a great time to do so! Plus, you might see a few photos here that I haven’t shared before. (Sadly, I don’t always get a chance to blog every shoot.) At least here, I’ll get to share a snippet of the days that didn’t get a dedicated blog post… 🙂
So, without further ado, here’s my 2019 appreciation post!
The year started with a TOCCA branding shoot! I was surprised and honored when TOCCA reached out for marketing images. I am such a huge fan of their products and my brides love having their beautifully designed bottles for their wedding day. It was a great way to kick off my year! I had full creative freedom and was able to enjoy each of tehse fairytale scents… what more could I ask for??
I second shot for Claudia Hurtarte, and it is always a pleasure when I do as she has the most caring heart and loving clients. It was a cold and wet morning but the sun came out just when we needed it! Some of my favorites are below!
Sarah from Kindred Weddings and Events and I had been discussing this shoot for weeks (maybe, months?)… if my creativity was peanut butter, she’d be my strawberry jam – she listened to my ideas while also implementing things I could never have thought of. We made such a great team, and with the help of many vendors, created this MAGIC! It was featured up by Ruffled blog, check out their post here.
Vanessa and Adrian exchanged their I do’s in a beautiful Catholic church. Every detail was classic and romantic. I fell head over heels for her bridal style (those detachable sleeves, tho)!! However, what I loved most about this day is how happy the bride was even though it was pouring rain all day. We had to make several last minute changes, but she embraced it, and even said she loved it!
And on a funny note – this was also the day I broke my umbrella, just like it happens in cartoons, it flipped inside out! R.I.P standard black umbrella.
This DUMBO styled shoot was set up and implemented by the Geek Chic mastermind herself – Debbie from Fandom Affairs. She knows just what to do to tie in all the details that make for an interesting, unique and whimsical design. I can’t help but smile when I look at these!
It’s no secret, I LOVE Disney… so does my friend and second shooter, Claudia. So, as you can imagine, we were pretty excited to be traveling to Epcot to photograph Kristina’s big day! (Kristina was our assistant for a bit and we miss her dearly!!) We could not believe our eyes, we could not believe that THIS was real life. She made all our Disney dreams come true!!!! Thank you so much Kristina, we had the best time capturing your magical day!! Check out my blog post from this day here.
I’m also sharing a few pictures from our time in Orlando for Kristina’s wedding. It was half “work” and half vacation! We attended Kristina’s tea-themed bridal shower, checked out Epcot’s Festival of the Arts and spent a day at the Magical Kingdom, of course!
& I am back in beautiful California for this sweet engagement session in Marina del Rey…
Claudia and I decided to dip our toes into something we had not tried before, bouquets! We love flowers, and using our creativity in different ways so we decided to give bouquet making a try. We picked up a bunch of different types of flowers from the L.A. Flower Mart and made these arrangements in my home. We watched a few videos to get guidance on what to do. We are no pro’s… but we found this was super addicting! This is such an art! I have so much respect for my fellow florists!!
Gosh, this day was just beautiful. We worked with the Skybox team which we met in 2018 through another one of our couples and we could not have had a better day. The weather was perfect, the couple was a dream to work with, and every detail was so well thought out. It was amazing!! Not to mention, this was the first wedding where we had both photo and video coverage. You can view the full day here & video here.
Side note – I LOVE the Skybox team, their attention to detail is amazing… but I love them most because they are also just KIND and LOVING human beings. They helped us all day, and made sure we were fed on time. (My vendor friends reading this know why that is so important!)
My first shot at an engagement bouquet! How did I do?! These sweethearts and I met for these engagement photos at Point Dume, a location special to them both as it is where the proposal originally happened!
I am head over heels for this venue!! It is so dreamy, elegant and other-worldly. Can you guess where it is? Here’s a hint – it’s local! This mansion isn’t in Italy, it’s in Sierra Madre! If you love this look, check out their website here. I accompanied my friends from Sun & Sparrow Photography for these captures.
ROAD TRIP! Claudia, Alexis and I traveled to San Jose’s “The Glass House” venue to capture Trang and David’s elegant day. We could not have been happier!! Everything about this day was magic, and I have my team and Christine from CMG to thank for it! Check out their full post here. Don’t forget to scroll all the way to the end to watch their fun and romantic video!
This is what happens when you put three photographers/creatives in a car and drive through beautiful fields during golden hour…
Hey, by the way, in case you haven’t met us – I’m Vanessa (middle photo!) the owner and lead photographer at XO and Fetti. Claudia (to my left) is our Associate and Second Photographer, she’s also the sweetest person you’ll ever meet. Alexis (to my right) is our quirky and talented videographer. We are the secret sauce behind magical, dreamy, fairytale like weddings. 🙂
This French Butterfly Styled Shoot is one of my all time favorites. We had so many roadblocks leading up to it, and I thought for a while that it just wasn’t going to happen! However, the universe decided otherwise and I am so happy for it. (Thank you to each vendor that made this shoot happen!) We spent the day at The French Estate and created beautiful imagery, what’s more is that this real couple was celebrating their anniversary! We are so lucky to do what we do!!
Check out the feature on Wedding Chicks!
What can I say? I have the BEST clients, these two bring a smile to my face even now! They have this silly, fun and carefree vibe that I LOVED – check out their full post here.
It’s Saddlerock Ranch in Malibu!!I had the pleasure of second shooting this wedding for Sun & Sparrow Photography. I love this venue so much, it is so picturesque with it’s rolling hills and open spaces. It actually ended up raining but this family just kept dancing, and I loved them for it!!
I receive several inquiries each year for church ceremonies and am always asked about lighting. I love celebrating everyone’s religion and culture; but I admit, lighting is something we do think about when we are asked to document a church ceremony. Luckily, we have a variety of beautifully lit churches near Los Angeles, and we haven”t ever had an issue with lighting. Claudia and I are very comfortable using flash and making it look natural, so as long as a church allows us to use it, we are good! If you are curious about our church ceremony lighting, take a look at Nicole and Jose’s beautiful day here – their dreamy reception was held at The York Manor!
I traveled to Goleta to second shoot this STUNNING wedding day, every detail was oh-so-magical!! Plus, I’ll admit, I had been counting down the days for this wedding since the Dos Pueblos Orchid Farm has been on my wedding venue bucket list for a while now! Check out the full post by my friends at Sun & Sparrow Photography here.
My dear friend celebrated her store’s relocation with a grand opening party and I had the pleasure to hang out with her crew! If you are shopping for a gown, I encourage you to check out her shop, she has a lovely selection of romantic and whimsical dresses!!
My hubby and I took a week off work, drove to Napa and discovered what the hype over wine is. (We are “beer people.”) Napa is a great escape, it is so charming!! The whole city feels like it hasn’t changed in years which we enjoyed. If you love vintage stores as much as I do, if you love great food… and if you love wine – visit Napa. That’s me on the left with my newly found vintage ray bans, the two pics to the right are from our time with family at Castello di Amorosa Winery!
I explored Mt. Baldy with these adventurous sweethearts! I love their love for travel, and after getting to know them better – love them too! I cannot wait to document their wedding day! Full post here.
A day full of joy and grace… Melisa and Caleb filled our hearts with so much love on their wedding day. I witnessed so much support from their family and friends throughout their day and it was just so beautiful!!
Claudia introduced me to these two sweethearts and now, I call them friends! I love following their family on Instagram, their relationship and family are serious #goals!!
My husband works for Disney (have I mentioned that before?) and travel is a big part of his role, so every now and then, I tag along or meet him in the city he traveled to for work. He was in Orlando, FL in June so I flew out for the weekend!
Nicole is my hair stylist and friend, and has been for years!! I’ve been taking photos of her sweet family since the beginning and I wouldn’t have it any other way, they are so fun, silly and loving. I always have the best time with them!
Christina and Joel made all my Universal Studios dreams come true!! (& got me hooked on The Good Place) I’m so lucky to be working with them, they are true sweethearts!! Check out the blog post here.
P.S. Joel is also twin to a previous XO and Fetti groom, so he may look familiar to those of you that have been following me for a while! 🙂
I traveled to San Diego for the weekend to document my cousin’s sweet ceremony. Such a joy!
My second bouquet! It was a busy and windy day, but these two didn’t let anything stop them from soaking in every moment of their session; they were sun-kissed and a little wet by the end of it all…(totally worth it!)
My third bouquet!! Ok, so maybe I’m addicted to playing with flowers now? Any-who, this one was extra special as it was for my new sister-in-law! My brother and his wife got married privately during one of their road trips. (Totally romantic!) We gathered on this day to celebrate their marriage. They got ready together in the same hotel room, we drove to their reception hall and took a few photos before heading in for the festivities!
Calamigos Ranch is one of my FAVORITE venues, I repeat …. Calamigos Ranch is one of my FAVORITE venues! I was incredibly honored to have documented this day on behalf of Sun and Sparrow Photography. Seriously, these two couldn’t have had a better wedding celebration, and I am so happy Claudia and I were there to capture it all!
08/04/19 – Oh these colors!! I love seeing peachy hues on a wedding day, something about this color makes me feel so cheerful. These were taken at Strawberry Farm in Irvine while second shooting for Sun & Sparrow Photography.
Remember these two?! Fun and amazing wedding party – check, adorable pug flower girl – check, Chasing Linen custom keepsake – check, beautiful venue – check, best couple with amazing personalities and style, check and check!!! Full post here.
P.S. This day was a special treat as it was also my birthday!! Woot woot!
Can you believe these were photographed at someone’s home? I am receiving more and more inquiries for private estate weddings and I’m all for it!!! Bring on the intimate (or large) meaningful celebrations! Sarah from Kindred Weddings and Events ran point on this day, and I’m so thankful for it as her assistance was VERY MUCH needed. We couldn’t have done this fairytale wedding without her!
I am always honored to document a wedding day on behalf of my friends at Sun and Sparrow Photography. Everyone at this wedding was so great to work with, Claudia and I couldn’t have asked for a better turn out. The venue (Los Willows Estate) was also oh-so stunning! Thank you SJ and Jeremy for trusting us with your day! P.S. Pups at a wedding are the best thing ever! I hope to see many many more pups at weddings!
Recall the cousin I photographed earlier in the year? Well, this is his older brother! It’s always a joy to photograph people in love, but photographing these moments for family is something simply sweet! Full blog post here.
These two ran into a bit of bad luck on their way to meet me for their engagement session so we unfortunately had a pretty late start, but we got through EVERYTHING we planned. (I couldn’t believe it!) We stayed out a bit past sunset and enjoyed the full moon. Check out their beautiful session here.
What can I say about these two and this day?! It was a DREAM; they planned their day to perfection. They infused their wedding with everything they love and cherish, from the intimate tea ceremony to the fun “tikki-themed” drinks, their day is one we will never forget! Also, can we all agree that Greystone Mansion and Gardens is the best fairytale-like venue near Los Angeles?! Full blog post here.
My dear friend Laura from Instyle Blooms and I had been discussing a bridal shoot for a few weeks. We finally decided to “just go for it” – we ordered what we needed, contacted a model and asked Claudia to join us for a “girls creativity date.” We met at a park that wasn’t particularly pretty, it was full of people and even had a few soccer games going on… but, we didn’t let that stop us! Here are a few of my favorite! I’m still amazed at our team work with creating one of my favorite images EVER, can you guess which one that is? Click here for more!
I don’t know if you guys know this about me, but I have a serious sweet tooth. So, seeing a beautifully displayed cake table with sweets will literally make me squeal in excitement!! I love photographing well designed tables with an array of sweets! This one made my jaw-drop, and drool. 😛 Captured these at Bella Vista Groves while second shooting for Sun & Sparrow Photography.
Oh, these two!! Not only was this day beautiful, and not only was this couple stunning and a joy to work with… but Claudia (my Associate and second shooter) was also part of the wedding party!! So sweet, right?! I didn’t get a chance to blog this one but my friendor Sam from To be Loved Events did , check out the images she shared here.
She also posted more images and their wedding video here!
This was my first sunrise session! It was overcast but it didn’t matter, these two and I enjoyed every minute of it. Blogged here.
These two married at the groom’s family home. The ceremony was in the living room, (so sweet and intimate) and the reception was under a tent in the backyard. We couldn’t help but soak up all the love, these two and their families made us feel so welcomed. Congrats again Edith and Matt!
Family trip to Salem for my sister’s birthday!! Yep, you read that right. What can I say, our family is full of adventurous spirits. Also, I took a photo of the greenhouse as inspiration – I hope to have one like this some day!
At home wedding celebrations are quickly becoming a thing and I’m all for it. These two got married in the bride’s childhood home. I had the opportunity to walk the space a week before and saw the bride’s dad working on the gazebo where the DJ would be, and the bride’s mom planning for the garden and florals she wanted to bring in. It was so heartwarming!
This engagement session was so much fun!! It was my first time visiting Abbot Kinney in years… it was just as colorful and vibrant as I remembered it! Check out their session here.
Matching tennis, YES PLEASE! These two are some of the kindest people I have ever met, I’m eagerly waiting for their wedding day…to see more, click here.
The Oaks Club at Valencia is a hidden gem! I’m so thankful to have documented this day for this couple. They also worked with one of my favorite vendors, Jayden from Vibe Florals! Check out more images here.
I am not a solo traveler but I travelled for the first time on my own last year for a styled shoot hosted by Heather Benge. This year, I travelled solo again for the SSAA conference. It was a two day event, one day included back to back classes by speakers leading in the wedding industry. The second day included several styled shoots. It was an amazing trip and so worth the time, effort and getting over the fear of solo traveling. 🙂
Sweet Stephanie and Adrian got married at a Catholic church in Hollywood. Their candle-lit reception was so dreamy, I hope to post more from this day sometime soon!
I’m head over heels for these two and their fur babies!! I’m so thankful our paths crossed as a previous XO and Fetti bride sent them my way, I cannot wait to document their wedding day!! Enjoy more from this session here.
We ended our month with this elegant wedding. These two melt my heart!! I still cannot believe this is my job… it is a true dream!! & If you are wondering where this is, check out the Skirball Cultural Center, it’s open to the public. Take a look at their day here.
We did something a little crazy. We met up in New York for a quick trip to see Harry Potter and the Cursed Child. A 2019 Highlight for sure!
I’ll repeat this a thousand times, pups at weddings are the BEST THING EVER. I am hoping to blog Maxwell House wedding day soon; Janese and Nate are two of the kindest souls… they did something so unique during their vows that I’ve never seen/heard… among many promised they made to each other, they also promised to always be kind and to think of others and not just themselves and to keep each other honest to that. (I work with the best humans, and fur babies!)
Claudia and I did a thing!! We had been talking about doing an anniversary shoot for each other for YEARS and each time, postponed due to our schedules. Well, with the help of our friend Tiffani from Sun and Sparrow Photography, and Laura from InstylBlooms we FINALLY did it! We styled our own anniversary shoots and got spoiled by our friends. I’m so happy we did this after so many years of just talking about it!
Recognize this family? This baby girl had her grandparents visiting from out of the country so we snapped a few moments of them playing with her at the park. I’m so glad we did, family is everything and with all the travel restrictions right now, who knows when they’ll be able to visit again. Hoping they remember this day always!
The final wedding we documented for the year was for my cousin. They had their celebration at the Life Arts Center in Riverside. His (now) wife is going to have a baby soon and I could not be more excited for them! I’m so thankful for Naomi from Bowties and Bouquets for helping with this day, especially as it was during the holidays and most vendors were on vacation. THANK YOU!
Final share for 2019…New Year’s Eve in London. How did I shoot a wedding on 12/28/19 and make it to London for New Year’s Eve? I don’t know – MAGIC and determination?
Thank you all for reading, and Thank you 2019 for so many wonderful memories!!!