Posted by: loveandsplendor | August 24, 2009

nisa & aaron – 5.30.09

as another warm and balmy summer begins to fade into a crisp and temperate fall, i thought i’d take my readers back to the peak of spring here in southern california. this turn-of-the-season wedding was so special for a number of reasons: 1) the bride met me when she was a bridesmaid in another wedding i coordinated last year. i love direct contact referrals like that!; 2) the photographer, john of john & joseph photography, was an out-of-town star i had always wanted to meet; 3) it all took place at castle green, the stunning & historic site i wed my own sweetie back in 2005! we were already off to a fabulous start for this event. 🙂

nisa & aaron live in chicago where they are both physicians. the physical distance coupled with their busy schedules meant we did a lot of coordinating via phone and email. i plan many southern california soirees for out-of-towners and am always happy to be the “in state” liason for these couples. it was especially easy in this instance due to my familiarity with her venue. 🙂 right from the start, nisa was drawn to rich, deep colors like eggplant, fuschia and burgundy. her vision for the day was romantic and lush, yet fun and accessible. we looked for quirky ways to infuse the celebration with the couple’s personalities, and make the day a true reflection of their relationship. the menu ended up playing a central role in this personalization. cocktail hour featured chicago-style favorites including deep dish pizza (flown overnight from chicago) and genuine chicago-style hot dogs, complete with poppy seed buns and plenty of sweet pickle relish. YUM! to maximize use of the site, we led guests through various phases of the evening throughout the property. the ceremony took place on the verdant front lawn, near a clover-shaped koi pond. cocktail hour allowed guests to explore various rooms of the property, filled with period furniture and tapestries. dinner was held in the marble-clad ballroom on the opposite side of the property, and guests were then invited outside on the front lawn where the space had been transformed into a lounge and dance area. it was the first time i’ve seen a reception at castle green take place outdoors, and it was a huge hit. 🙂 the entire day was an experience for their out of town guests…and i’m thrilled to share a glimpse of the day with you.

enjoy these brilliant photos, courtesy of john & joseph photography. based out of seattle but willing to travel everywhere, J&J create absolutely stunning images and are sooo great to work with.

delicate dress details

first look!

i LOVED nisa’s vibrant bouquet, comprised of phalaenopsis and cymbidium orchids, burgundy roses, and ruffled fuschia peonies.

adore this joyful photo of nisa and her girls!

bridal party!

some beautiful portraits of the couple. castle green has so many gorgeous nooks for photos!

this photo makes me SO happy!! i have this exact shot, from this exact angle, with the exact same grin plastered on my face, from my own wedding day (at this exact location). maybe i’ll do a side by side comparison later this week. haha 🙂

aww! a tender moment right after the recessional. i love this photo.

escort cards greeted guests in the foyer, arranged around the base of a “wish tree.” guests were encouraged to jot down their best wishes for the couple, and attach them to the manzanita tree.

do i spy a budding love connection?? 🙂 i LOVE when the flowergirl and ringbearer become best friends.

i mean, just look at him! i bet he had her smitten on sight. 🙂

a quick nuzzle before the grand entrance. do you spy a certain wedding planner in the background? i’m probably rounding up some bridal party members. 🙂 wish you could see my favorite airline-stewardessque dress. and yes, i frequently wear 4″ heels on a wedding day.

the ballroom was bedecked with chocolate satin pintuck linens, raspberry satin napkins and gold chiavaris. centerpieces alternated tall and short, and utilized the passionate palette of plums, purples, and fuschias. soft pink lighting lent just the right amount of drama to the room once the sun set.

the lovely (and delicious!) cake, dotted with sugar paste flowers.

swoon!! this classic image needs to be blown up. 🙂

after dinner, we invited guests outside for dancing, coffee & sweet treats (including gelato. yum!)…

here’s the outdoor reception set-up during the day…

and night 🙂

candy, anyone??

sweet silhouettes

it was such a beautiful day!  nisa & aaron: adore you both!  thank you for making the planning process such a joy.  i wish you all the best as you continue your lives together.  let me know the next time you’re in town for a visit!

the vendor rundown:

happy monday, everyone!  xoxo, angel



  1. love love LOVE the color combination AND the idea of deep dish authentic chicago pizza. wow! they flew it in?!

  2. porto’s!

    beautiful, as usual. 🙂

  3. I love this wedding! So neat that they had a two part reception so guests got to enjoy all the wonderful areas of the castle! Bebuds did a wonderful job on the florals too!

  4. You got married THERE?! It looks magnificent! Planning a wedding over phone calls and emails must be intense, too.

  5. Aww, I can’t think of Castle Green without thinking of your wedding! It was such an inspiration when I was planning. 🙂

    Loved this!

  6. wow, great post! It was fantastic working with you!

  7. LOVIN this color scheme! go girl!

  8. beeeutiful as always! love love LOVE the fuchsia!

    and yes, can’t wait to see the side-by-side pics! 😉

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