Joyous Garden Wedding | Real Weddings

Ryan & Laurie were married at the amazing Twin Oaks Garden Estate in San Diego, California. These two hail from California but their acting careers led them to New York. They did not, however meet in their home state of California but through a mutual friend in NYC. Brides & Weddings recently interviewed the bride about her wedding planning experience and her wedding day choices. She also gives other brides some excellent advice…enjoy their photos by Jenna and Eddy Photographers.

Ryan and I met at a mutual friend’s birthday party. After a few hours of witty banter and teasing, we discovered we both loved baseball. At the end of the night, he asked for my number so he could take me to a game, mainly to find out if I really liked baseball, or if I was just one of those girls who pretended to like sports to impress a guy. Needless to say, I passed the test. Our relationship beagan with a huge test, as my mom was battling the final stages of breast cancer. After about a year, it was clear my Mom wasn’t going to make it much longer. Ryan was stuck in NYC doing his graduate thesis, and I was in San Diego with my Mom. He Facetimed her the night before she passed to ask her permission to marry me. He then described to her exactly where and how he would do it, so she could picture it. You see, 10 years earlier, my Mom and I were supposed to take a trip to London and Paris, but we never made it because she was too sick. Ryan promised her he would take me. Not only would he take me, but he would also propose in Paris along Le Seine, just as he had described to her. I found out very early on in our relationship what kind of a man Ryan would be, and I’m the luckiest girl in the world.

Brides & Weddings: What was your theme? 

We didn’t really have a theme, unless you count wanting to throw the most fun party for our friends and family! I guess what tied the whole wedding together was sunflowers. I was never one of those girls that planned her wedding from a young age. The only thing I ever talked about with my mom was sunflowers, so they were everywhere. In fact, my bridesmaids carried two long stem sunflowers down the aisle instead of bouquets. One they kept, and the other they left on an empty chair dedicated to my mom, as they walked down the aisle.

Brides & Weddings: Describe the dress you chose and the moment you knew it was the one. 

I actually chose my dress before I was engaged! We knew my mom was dying, and we wanted to go dress shopping as a bucket list item. A wonderful store called The Bustle in Del Mar, CA allowed us to have that moment together, even though we weren’t planning on buying anything. I tried on 11 dresses, and hadn’t really found anything. Then my Mom saw one more. It was everything I didn’t want: mermaid cut, sparkles, and a sweetheart neckline. The only thing it did have that I liked was lace. I put it on for her, and in the dressing room, I already knew. When I saw her face after I came out, the choice was obvious.

Brides & Weddings: What was your favorite details?

It actually had to do with my dress and the rehearsal dinner as well. The seamstress put the lace from my Mom’s wedding dress on the inside of my dress, and made me a handkerchief with some of the material as well. So even though she wasn’t there in person, she was everywhere. The seamstress also shortened my Mom’s wedding dress, and without trying it on ahead of time, it magically fit me, and I wore it to our rehearsal dinner.

Brides & Weddings: Describe the first dance.

To be honest, it’s kind of a blur! I remember being surrounded by all our friends and family, but at the same time, all I can remember is Ryan. I don’t think I looked away from his eyes once.

Brides & Weddings: What advice do you have for other brides?

Take all the advice you’re given with a grain of salt. It’s your wedding day, and anything you want to do is RIGHT! Surround yourself with people that love you and want the best for you. And just two technical things that really helped: give envelopes with vendor tips to someone so they can take care of it for you, and assign some bridesmaids to gather your belongings at the end of the night and anything else that needs to be taken from the venue.


Photographer:  Jenna and Eddy Photographers//Cinema and Video: Creative Capture//DJ: San Diego Partytime DJ’s//Shoes:Converse//Dress Designer:Stella York//Event Venue:Twin Oaks Garden Estate

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