Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Venue...BOOKED! A rare post on our actual wedding.

So El Fiance and I have finally booked our venue. As I've mentioned, we were originally planning to do a ranch wedding in San Luis Obispo, but cost and logistics didn't end up making sense for what we could afford or what we wanted--proximity to bars for after-party, no portable toilets, an open bar where we could purchase the alcohol, etc etc. We still wanted to have a mini-destination from where we live, the San Francisco Bay Area, so we decided on Santa Barbara, where my fiance went to college. Santa Barbara is awesome, and like many beautiful places, expensive.

We narrowed it down to three places within our budget and decided on Rockwood Women's Club. Here's our space:

I love the venue for so many reasons: it's beautiful, close to downtown Santa Barbara, we can have the ceremony on the patio and then convert it into a lounge space for the reception with TWO fireplaces, the dance floor space is huge, they have FREE overnight parking and Sue, my contact, is a doll. It's hard to get a feel for how large and lovely the venue is from the pictures, but it's wonderfully spacious and airy. It was built in the 1920's and has that Santa Barbara, Spanish style feel. My only problem is I think I suffer from over-blog-itis. I hadn't originally envisioned a space so...classy, I guess. When I came up with words to describe my overall vision, I used adjectives like, rustic, sweet, charming, home-spun, fun. The boards, Amelie's Carnival Wedding, Spanish Vintage, and Rustic Brown and White, were originally for us. Of course, I plan on keeping the fun, but rustic works a little better for a barn than an indoor space with a red-draped stage and iron chandeliers.

I love vintage touches, and want to keep it closer to casual than formal. I'm thinking of a base palette of shades of brown, (darker wood chairs--not chiavari because we can't afford them, burlap, nude <--my favorite) and shades of white, (ivory, cream), and maybe some other accents like pale blush or yellow. Fortunately, they don't allow or need anything on the walls. There are worse existential dilemmas to have, but I'm just not sure where to go decor/theme/design-wise. I know I want to DIY as much as is possible/reasonable, keep the florals to a minimum, maybe even do some loose arrangements with wholesale flowers, but what should I do for centerpieces? Vintage birdcages and books? Lanterns? Small frames? Indecision ack!

So, blog-world, any ideas for me? :)


  1. Looks amazing! Santa Barbra has soooo many gorgeous venues. This one is definitely one of them. =)

  2. This is absolutely GORGEOUS!! I love everything about it. I'm sure your wedding is going to be a jaw-dropper.

    I'm starting my giveaway today, BTW. Thought you'd like it since you're a bride-to-be.

    Check it out so you can enter to win some awesome "I DO" crystal shoe sticker!