Lindsey and Torin’s Airbnb Micro Wedding

Captured & submitted by Courtney McManaway Photography


This wedding day was originally supposed to be an event at a country club in Canyon Lake, California. As COVID started to impact wedding day plans, Lindsey and Torin really wanted to keep their wedding day, and opted to rent an Airbnb in Temecula, California for an intimate micro wedding! They included so many events I loved as a photographer on their day:

-Lloyd, their puppy, was a big star!

-They read their vows to each other before the ceremony

-Lindsey’s dress had an awesome gauze back detail that looked amazing in the wind!

-Their outdoor ceremony overlooked the hills of Temecula Valley

It was an amazing day to photograph! Lindsey’s survey about their day is below 🙂

Tell me about your wedding! What was the inspiration behind your day? Did you have a specific theme, style or color palette? Did you incorporate any cultural or religious traditions in any part of your day?

Our wedding day didn’t go as planned due to the ongoing pandemic from COVID-19. What was supposed to be approximately a 130 person wedding turned out to be less than 20 people, because we only invited immediate family from both sides. As much as we would have loved to experience what it is like to have a big wedding and ceremony, we now talk about how we wouldn’t have wanted it any other way. It was incredibly special to be able to have just our family there to support our love for one another. Since my family is from Minnesota, they have never gotten an opportunity to hang out with my husband Torin’s family altogether at the same time. It brought us so much joy to see our families get along so well, and by the end of the night we felt like one big family.

The only big inspiration behind the new plans was that I’ve seen other brides go through it and they said it was the best decision. And looking back it is hands down the best decision we made. I originally had more of a neutral earthy theme of taupes, sage green, and sand colors. My sister, Brittany, did an amazing job keeping it close to what my envision was. If anyone knows me, I extremely dislike the color pink haha, but when we went to Trader Joe’s to pick out my wedding flowers the pink peonies were speaking to me. My sister made my bouquet and the boutonnieres!! I would have honestly been lost without my sister, she helped me with every little detail, talk about a stellar Matron of Honor! There is nothing real traditional when it comes to the pandemic and weddings these days. We did sleep in separate locations the night before and did not see each other until our first look. I did have something old- my grandmother’s band, something new- the bracelet my dad gifted me the night before, something borrowed-my grandmother’s engagement ring my sister has and something blue- my Kate Spade sparkly Keds. I tried to incorporate the traditional things that I will look back and be happy that I did.

1. Let’s talk wedding decor. How did you decorate your space for the ceremony and the reception? Was any part of the decor DIY?

Wedding decor was stuff that I pulled together from what we plan to use at our reception that we will have down the road and stuff that we went and got the week of the wedding. I used some eucalyptus garland for the tables and some clear glass votives for candles and mini milk jug vases for flowers and greenery. We got some fabric from JoAnn’s to make the drapery for the ceremony.

2. What were the florals like in your wedding? Did you use flowers in any of your design elements like the bridal bouquets, centerpieces or ceremony backdrop? Did they play an important part in the overall style of your wedding?

The flowers were all from Trader Joe’s! As a huge Trader Joe’s fan, I had been scoping out the flower selections that were coming out about 2-3 weeks before our wedding. I wasn’t sure what I was going to do exactly and kept talking ideas with my sister, and she gave me the thumbs up to get the flowers from TJ’s and we will make my bouquet! I didn’t even have to think twice about how they were going to turn out, I knew no matter what they would look beautiful and special because my sister made it. Some of this was from personal experience from other weddings, but mostly from just winging it with my sister and I think that was the most unique part of it all, is that I got to bond and put this all together with my sister.

I took the eucalyptus garland we will use again and placed them down the center of the long tables. Bought some tea lights and put them alongside the eucalyptus garland. My sister and I found these adorable little milk jug looking vases and filled them with leftover baby’s breath and fresh eucalyptus from Trader Joe’s.

The backdrop of our ceremony was palm trees and white fabric that we got from JoAnn Fabrics. We had bungee cords that held it up mostly and had to nail in the bottoms of it because it was so windy.

3. Let’s talk fashion. How did you both choose your wedding day look?

I’ve always wanted to have a sleek modern dress but wanted a little lace to it. When I found my dress at BHLDN I was in love. It had a big open back and it fit me so well. I was so excited to order my dress and say “yes to the dress!” When it finally came in the mail and I tried it on, it was way too big so I needed to size down. I quickly ordered the size down and waited for this new one to come in the mail. Once it arrived it was like Christmas morning. I rushed into the bedroom to try it on and when I opened the box I noticed right away… THIS IS THE WRONG DRESS! I was so sad and defeated because when I went to check the size I needed for my original dress was back ordered until mid March. So I thought, well might as well try on this one and see. Turns out I liked this one even better! It was literally the same exact style just some mesh in the front chest area and an elegant addition of lace in the back. I did some alterations to take the shoulders off so it was more like my original dress. It was quite the whirlwind with this dress but in the end I love it so much and happy with my choice.

When it comes to shoes, I’m not really a high heel kind of gal. I like a short heel at most but I’m more into flats. When I stumbled upon the Kate Spade Keds I knew they were the one. They were cute for the wedding day and really comfortable! Also they had that little bit of blue too which was perfect! I originally broke in some short cheetah heels but since the grass at the airbnb was uneven I didn’t want to risk falling. My earrings I also got from BHLDN and just picked some simple ones. My bracelet was from my dad that he gifted me the night before my wedding.

4. How did you meet, and what is your proposal story?

Spring break 2014 I flew out to San Diego, California. I was staying with my aunt and uncle who invited me out for a get away after my grandma passed away and gave me the flight to come out. A week before I got out here I had lost a bet and had to download the new app TINDER. I was annoyed because I did not want to pursue anything since I had gotten out of a 3 year relationship. Well, while I was out in San Diego and on my phone before bed I decided to check the app out. I didn’t quite understand how TINDER actually worked and thought that since I put the town I was living in it only took that location and took a 10 mile radius from that… little did I know that it searched for people in the area you were currently at. Once I had gotten home from my spring break trip I got a notification on my phone from a guy, Torin, saying “why are you 2,000 miles away?” (Face to forehead ????????‍♀‍ shoot this app searches in the area you are currently at) I felt stupid but replied that yes I was currently there for a trip but made a decision while there that I was ready for something new and exciting in my life and was planning on moving out there summer 2014. I deleted the app after my 2 week bet/promise and Torin had added me on Snapchat. He would send me pictures of a jar of peanut butter or his goofy socks and funny faces. I thought nothing of him than someone I knew in San Diego. On my road trip out here he sent me a few songs to listen to on my drive and checked in on how things were going. Believe it or not.. once I arrived in San Diego I went and MET him with my friend Halley who drove with me. He gave me a hug within seconds of meeting me and something just surged inside me. This guy who barely knows me just hugged me and is extremely handsome. (Am I dreaming?) After I got settled into my aunt and uncle’s place and met some of his friends he asked if he could finally take me out on a date. I thought, sure no big deal we are just friends… but after that sushi date I knew deep down we weren’t going to be just friends. Our relationship bloomed quickly and we dated for 4 1/2 years until Torin got down on one knee and asked me to marry him on the beach in Pacific Beach. To celebrate our engagement we went back to the place where our first date was getting sushi.

5. What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?

Talking about this with Torin, we both agree being able to see each other and have that first look. I think that the anticipation of him leaving the night before to stay with his parents was tough because we rarely spend a night alone. We have been waiting for this moment for a really long time, and with all the hard hurdles we had to jump to get here with all the uncertainties of COVID-19, standing next to him reading our vows was so amazing. It felt so right and we were so happy the day was finally happening!

6. Do you have any wedding planning or marriage advice that you’d like to share with other couples planning their day?

We have already experienced one of the toughest lessons as a couple… and that is that things don’t always go as you plan, but as long as you stick together, they always work themselves out. As difficult as this whole process has been for us, being there for each other and reminding ourselves what marriage is really about has made us even stronger.


Dress Designer:BLDHN//Photographer: Courtney McManaway Photography//

Submitted via Two Bright Lights

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