POPSUGAR Love & Sex

Emelie and Chanti's Whimsical DIY Wedding

Apr 18 2014 - 11:10am

Emelie Burnette already shared with us what she learned planning her gay wedding [1], and now we get to see the big day! Emelie and Chanti tied the knot last Summer in San Juan Bautista, CA, and Emelie is dishing all the details of their laid-back, DIY [2] wedding [3]. Keep reading to hear about the planning process and see snaps from the Summer soiree!

Tell us about your relationship and proposal story. How did you meet? How long did you date before getting engaged?

"When Chanti and I met as English majors at UC Santa Barbara, the timing wasn't quite right, so we went our separate ways after graduation, when she moved to San Francisco and I moved to LA. About six months later, we started dating long-distance, and a year after that, I got the job at POPSUGAR and moved to the Bay. Chanti proposed at alumni weekend that Spring (in the hall where we met, natch), and we were married a year-and-a-half later! As a bonus, Prop 8 and DOMA were overturned two months before our wedding [4] date, so everything was legal."

Photos by G Aranow Photography [5]

How would you describe your wedding [6] theme and vision?

"Everything was built to be casual with just enough elegance and a hint of whimsy. We threw ourselves into every little detail, and even the way the ceremony was arranged — our close friend was the officiant, and both our moms spoke — was very laid-back and us. Chanti curated the whole playlist, and her dad performed a few songs for the crowd. At the end of the day, we're pretty proud that it didn’t fall into any preset category, but if we had to pick something, I'd say a Summer concert: everyone was dancing and having a good time. We've even been told there was an afterparty at a nearby karaoke bar!"

Photo by G Aranow Photography [7]

Did you take on any DIY [8] projects?

"We went spray-paint crazy. Mason jars, table figurines, table name holders, you name it — I think Home Depot started to get suspicious. We also hand-drew hearts onto matchbooks and enlisted the bridal party to tie them to sparklers, which we placed at each table setting for guests to light later in the evening. Chanti designed the menus and itineraries, and we printed them out at FedEx, where we took advantage of the sheet cutter (not something I would recommend when you're short on time!).

For favors, we bought miniature packets, which we decorated with cute kitten stamps (we have a cat hashtag on Instagram, #danteandcomma, so it seemed appropriate). We filled them with flower seeds, wrote 'California Paw-pies' on the front, and sealed them with a Golden Gate bridge stamp on the back."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [9]

"The table name cards were also DIY [10] — we picked the names of some of our favorite love songs. It was extra fun to then add those songs to the playlist and let every table get their own little 'shout-out.' All the flowers were hand-picked by us, too. We picked them up at the San Francisco Flower Mart the morning before the wedding [11], and man, my car will never smell that good again! Our only real decorative 'splurges' were the piñatas, which we ordered online, and the hand-cut papel picado, which we bought on Valencia Street."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [12]

"But truly, we had some incredibly generous friends and family pitching in. Chanti's bench was the deepest: her good friend made our cake — vanilla bean with a raspberry cream filling and buttercream frosting — (which was ah-mazing, by the way), another customized our cake topper, and a combination of our friends and wedding [13] party assembled all the bouquets, table arrangements, and boutonnieres the morning of. Heck, my mother-in-law did my hair! My nails and my makeup were both me, though — that was basically my entire contribution to the wedding."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [14]

Where did the wedding [15] take place, and why did you choose it?

"We stumbled across San Juan Bautista the Summer before our wedding, when we were camping nearby with friends. One of them mentioned the mission there, so we stopped by and treated ourselves to brunch at Jardines de San Juan, which happened to have a beautiful back garden in addition to the great food (and margaritas!). It popped up on a list of gay-friendly venues when we started our search not long after that, so we knew it was meant to be. We even got to take our postceremony shots on the mission grounds!"

Photo by G Aranow Photography [16]

What didn't go according to plan, and how did you solve it?

"One of our little flower girls decided at the last minute she didn't want to participate, so we just had our other one take her time. Also, the wind picked up just a little too much for some of the stuff on our display table, so we ended up taping stuff down.

Other than that, everything went off without a hitch (except the hitch, that is)."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [17]

What advice would you give to other brides-to-be planning a wedding [18]?

"You don't have to necessarily spend a lot of money on your wedding details, but you should be prepared to put in the time. It was a lot of late nights with newspaper strewn across the floor and a lot of strategic storage around our one-bedroom apartment. We also looked at a lot of OK fonts, color schemes, and decor options before settling on the right ones. Shopping is hard — don't let anybody tell you different.
And planning is extremely stressful (obviously). I can see why the honeymoon period became the honeymoon period — you're finally able to relax and remember why you like each other! My best recommendation would be to take time for yourselves outside the actual planning. Having a few nights in a row off, where you just go read somewhere and enjoy not having to worry about anything, will keep you sane . . . or as sane as possible, given the circumstances."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [19]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [20]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [21]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [22]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [23]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [24]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [25]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [26]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [27]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [28]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [29]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [30]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [31]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [32]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [33]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [34]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [35]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [36]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [37]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [38]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [39]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [40]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [41]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [42]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [43]

"Our nieces were the flower girl and train carrier. My younger sister and I played the same roles in their parents' wedding [44] when we were kids, so it was extra sentimental for me."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [45]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [46]

"We requested that the bridal party wear whatever shoes they wanted, so they could show off their personalities. The ladies ranged from Converse to four-inch platforms, but oddly enough, the two men bought the same pair of shoes — totally by accident."

Photo by G Aranow Photography [47]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [48]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [49]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [50]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [51]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [52]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [53]

The recessional song was "Fell in Love With a Girl" by The White Stripes and the first dance song was "I Never" by Rilo Kiley.

Photo by G Aranow Photography [54]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [55]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [56]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [57]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [58]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [59]

Special Thanks

Photography: G Aranow Photography [60]

Venue: Jardines de San Juan [61] in San Juan Bautista, CA

Cake topper: Chiikake [62]

Ties for Chanti and groomsmen: General Knot & Co. [63]

Bridesmaid dresses: Modcloth [64]

Cake: Colleen Higgins

Piñatas: Whack Piñateria [65]

Papel picado: Casa Bonampak [66]

Photo by G Aranow Photography [67]


Source URL
http://www.tressugar.com/love/Casual-DIY-Same-Sex-Summer-Wedding-34497582