Our Marketing Manager’s Postponed Earthen Wedding at Grand Gimeno
Hi! It’s me again. Kristine. Back in June of 2020 I shared my personal story about how COVID affected my original wedding date - you can read that post HERE - and now I’m back to tell you about my happy ending. I guess the best place to start would be where I said that I was postponing my ‘big’ wedding to September of 2020 in that blog post (the one linked up there). Well, that did not happen and looking back on the September date in that blog post makes me laugh because it wasn’t until almost a full year later that Nick (my now husband) and I got to have our special day.
Things were looking pretty bleak as we drew closer and closer to our September 2020 date. At this point we were about ready to just go to a local park, invite all our friends and family, grill up some burgers, order a bounce house, throw away all our hopes and dreams (okay, all MY hopes and dreams) of the beautiful wedding we planned, and call it a day. Seriously, I walked down to the local park near my house and actually took a picture of the city contact information in case we wanted to get a permit to host the event there. Desperate times. We ultimately decided about a month before to change our wedding celebration date AGAIN. This time we moved the date to early fall 2021 and held on for dear life that the new date would work.
To say that our vendors moved mountains would be an understatement. It was really all hands on deck. I had so much support and help from everyone at Jay’s. Linda and AJ always updating me with all things Grand Gimeno related, Hannah answering my million questions and requests and ensuring everything would run smoothly on the day of (really, I think I asked her every question in the book and probably some she’s never been asked before haha), Debbie and Sarah Rose connecting me with linen, flatware, glassware, stationary, etc. vendors and perfecting design details with me, Claudio creating the perfect layout, and so much more! I really am so thankful for the help because let’s be honest, I love my husband, but wedding planning isn’t really an interest of his, especially when I am a control freak when it comes to things like this haha.
With only two months until our re-wedding, everything magically came together, and when I say ‘magically’ I really mean we all magically didn’t kill each other over the stress of me wanting everything to be perfect and ‘not like every wedding I’ve seen before’ - and I’ve seen A LOT. Being a creative myself, I wanted to make a lot of pieces for the wedding. I wanted to be able to say, “We made that.” Both my and Nick’s family came together to create arched shaped backdrops and shelving walls for our thank you gift display. Nick and I tried our hand at creating travertine tile pillars, and it miraculously worked perfectly. Nick came up with our awesome take home gift idea which was leather catchalls that had a center stamp that said, “CATCH FEELINGS”. We sourced materials for the catchalls, created a custom stamp, and handmade them ourselves. We drove around to stone yards looking for scrap pieces for a welcome sign to tie into our natural, earthen theme and we were lucky enough to find the perfect piece from The Yard. I hammered one of the marble edges to give it an organic look which was a great way of relieving the daily stressors of planning a postponed wedding by the way! The handmade details were complete! Now finishing the final details...
Nick and I met with Morgen from Fleur.ish again for yet another floral mock up. Our colors and the overall theme of the wedding changed since our original direction in 2019, so we needed an updated look that would compliment the space at Grand Gimeno. She pulled together the most beautiful flowers and arranged them in these stucco, urn-like vases to create romantic designs. Blush and toffee roses, blue tulips, green hydrangea, and white dahlias as big as my hand filled each pot. Her talent is ingenious and she really wowed us and all our guests on wedding day. Plates and glassware were from Bright, flatware was from Sundrop Vintage, dance floor and market lighting was from Team Impulse Events, fireplace lounge, fire pit pillows, ceremony/sweet heart table arch and welcome table were rented from Witty Rentals, velvet and embroidered vine linens were from BBJ and La Tavola Linen, and photo booth was from Desert Luna Photo Booths. While finalizing the vendors above, I worked closely with Velvet Fox Designs to create our seating chart, thank you display, menus, and table numbers. Vinyl and acrylic lettering was laser cut and adhered to our marble and wooden signs and each guest’s name was etched into pond-like shapes for our seating chart. Deckled edge, letter pressed menus and signature cocktail signs were crafted from thick paper and dropped off the day before the re-wedding. To spice up the olive tree row in our reception space, I rented rattan and wicker lights from Sundrop Vintage and Team Impulse Events installed them creating a space where guests flocked to for photos. Every one of my vendors was communicative and so helpful with suggestions throughout the planning process which made the day of the wedding run smoothly. I also hired Christina’s team, Events by the Cea, as my day of coordinator and I couldn’t recommend them enough. No detail was overlooked and everything went off without a hitch.
The morning of the re-wedding was not exactly how I expected. I thought I’d wake up relaxed and ready to party, you know, since I’m already married to Nick and all... Well, I woke up and felt so nervous the entire morning. Constant butterflies in my stomach. Bless my maid of honor’s soul for reminding me to drink water and eat or else I probably wouldn’t have. Champagne was flowing, Palm Sandwiches were snacked on and the music was pumping from 8am - 1pm as each girl did their hair and got their makeup done by Julie Hiles Beauty - love her!
We arrived at Grand Gimeno around 2pm and I immediately changed into my wedding dress. THE wedding dress I had been waiting almost 2 years to wear. I pulled the zipper all the way up, and with a sigh of relief, I exhaled. Next, I put on my Hermione de Paula veil - quite literally my statement piece. At the bottom of the veil read the lyrics from my and Nick’s first dance song, “My world it stopped, you slowed the time” surrounded by sparkling beads and pearls. Group pictures were taken in the Powder Room, then I headed to the courtyard for our first look. With the bridesmaids peering out one wing of windows and the groomsmen looking out the other, I tapped Nick’s shoulder. He turned around and I cried. Yup. I cried. Another thing I didn’t think would happen, especially at our first look. Maybe it was all the bottled up emotion leading up to our ‘big’ postponed day and the anticipation building up then releasing all the nerves when I saw Nick’s face - I think that was it. I cried and I laughed because I was crying and Nick held me and laughed with me. Our bridesmaids and groomsmen came out and joined us for group photos before heading back to our rooms and awaiting the ceremony.
Guests arrived through the courtyard, signed our guest book and found their seats inside. A floral arch stood tall against Grand Gimeno’s wall of windows and light was streaming in. “To Build A Home” by The Cinematic Orchestra played as Nick walked out arm in arm with his mom and dad followed by the bridesmaids and groomsmen. The song changed to “Light” by Sleeping at Last and I knew that was my cue. With my dad by my side, we took a deep breath, looked at each other, and stepped out from the archway as everyone in the crowd stood. In that moment, it felt like all my anxiety fully subsided and I could embrace the moment looking at my husband at the head of the aisle while squeezing my dads arm next to me. I hugged my dad and he shook Nick’s hand, then went to his seat. Our officiant, John, began the ceremony with the story of how Nick and I met him and how we asked him to officiate our wedding, then we went into vows. Nick and I said, “I do,” exchanged rings, and shared a kiss as we were pronounced husband and wife (again). “I Believe in a Thing Called Love” by The Darkness began playing for our recessional song and everyone exited into cocktail hour.
A gorgeous floral arrangement topped the terracotta colored fire place and on the other end of the room was the bar where beer, wine, and cocktails were being shaken and stirred. Nick and I had our own signature cocktails that we made ourselves before the wedding and had the bartenders serve with our recipes. Nick’s cocktail was “The Saddleback,” named after the community college him and I met at in Fashion Design class. It was a smoked, peach old fashioned. My drink was “The Botanical,” named after the location we had our micro COVID wedding at. It was a rose and rum drink topped with a rose egg white foam and rose bud garnish. While drinks were pouring, Crab Cakes with mango papaya salsa, Beef Wellingtons with béarnaise sauce, and Roasted Red Cherry Tomato Bruschetta were being tray passed. When I say I scarfed down my mini Beef Wellington after the ceremony, I really mean it. I grabbed the skewer the wellington was on and devoured it in one happy bite, then proceeded to the rest of my hors d’oeuvres. I could finally relax and EAT! Nick and I made our rounds to thank everyone for coming during this time so that we wouldn’t feel as rushed during the reception. We laughed, hugged, and shook hands with our closest family and friends, then lined up for our grand entrance as guests found their way outside.
Photo taken by Grand Gimeno.
The sun was setting just as our bridal party made their entrances and took their seats. Nick and I entered last and made our way to the center of the dance floor. Our song came on and we swayed to the lyrics for our first dance. After, my dad and I danced and Nick and his mom danced, then it was time for toasts and dinner. Tables were draped in bone velvet linens and some had ivory linen with dainty vine embroideries. Quartz crystal clusters intermingled with taupe candles and floral arrangements, and custom menus sat atop each plate. The floral arch from the ceremony was now the backdrop to my and Nick’s sweetheart table and our travertine tile pillars stood on either side. Finally it was time to enjoy a full meal! Tables were dismissed two at a time to the buffet where Lemon & Thyme Glazed Chicken Breast, Tri-Tip Carvery with crunchy onions, charred three onion sauce and Argentinian chimichurri, Grilled Marinated Vegetables, Mashed Potatoes, Tortellini with Creamy Pesto, Pear & Walnut Salad, and Jay’s Famous Cheese Rolls were being served. Since Nick and I said our thank yous during cocktail hour, we were able to stay at our sweetheart table and enjoy each others company while eating dinner.
Photo taken by Grand Gimeno.
Dinner ended as soon as some classic oldies started playing over the speakers. “Sweet Caroline” and “Brandy” got everyone out of their chairs and on the dance floor. For those who didn’t want to show off their moves just yet, Desert Luna Photo Booths was set up near the fireplace lounge. Guests posed for pictures with props like disco balls, funny signs, heart pillows, sunglasses and more and immediately got a print of their photo. Nick and I snuck away for our private cake cutting at the dessert station while our guests continued partying on. We cut into our personal-sized chocolate cake with vanilla Bavarian filling and fed each other a bite. So good. Highly recommend this flavor cake from Jay’s! Once the cake cutting ended, everyone was invited to enjoy an assortment of bite-sized desserts. Mini Creme Brûlée, Chocolate Decadence, Cookies & Milk Shots, Salted Caramel Peanut Butter Macarons, Coconut Macarons, and Mini Espresso Italiano Tiramisu Cupcakes filled the dessert station, and everyone was able to choose their favorites. Nick and I had at least a bite of every option. We definitely have a sweet tooth. On a sugar high, all our friends made it back out to the dance floor for some dance battles to end the night. We threw it back to the early 2000s and closed out the dance floor with pop punk songs. The day flashed before our eyes, but the moments we shared will last a lifetime.
Photo taken by Grand Gimeno.
Photo taken by Grand Gimeno.
A huge thank you to everyone at Jay’s for making my and Nick’s postponed wedding special and keeping me sane during the planning process. To all the vendors involved with our wedding, you really went above and beyond and we are forever grateful for the hard work you put into this special day.
Venue: Grand Gimeno // Catering: Jay’s Catering // Photographer: Sydney Noelle Photography // Coordinator: Events by the Cea // Florist: Fleur.ish // Rentals: Witty Rentals // Linens: BBJ Linen & La Tavola Fine Linens // Tabletop: Bright Event Rentals // Officiant: John Garcia // Lighting & Dance Floor: Team Impulse Events // Rattan Lights & Flatware: Sundrop Vintage // Dress: Madi Lane Bridal from Luv Bridal San Diego // Veil: Hermione de Paula // HMUA: Julie Hiles Beauty // Signage: Velvet Fox Designs // Videography: Hector Mejia // Photo Booth: Desert Luna Photo Booths // Rings: James Allen Rings & Anna Sheffield // Thank You Display & Gifts: Bride & Groom