Alicia and Justin's Engagement Party

This past weekend, I got to see a dear old friend Alicia, it so happens that I just received Alicia and Justin's (the fiance) wedding invitation! Isn't it so adorable! I really like the embossing detail and the black scroll frame. Justin's aunt handmade every invitations. Isn't that the perfect wedding gift ever? It's a totally unique & lovely wedding invitation, yet at the same time, it was one less task for Alicia and Justin to worry about while planning the wedding.

This reminds of Alicia and Justin's engagement party a few months ago. It was a sweet family and friends gathering at the prettiest backyard ever! Here's a few photos I took on my iPhone:

Wedding Showcase: Jordan + Jame's Engagement Shoot

Some of you may remember the 'Season of Love' post, I wrote a few months ago. This couple's engagement has made me most excited, because Jordan is my cousin! I just love weddings, especially when its a wedding of a dear loved one. I really am just counting down the days to the wedding along with the bride and groom.

James and Jordan met while studying at Santa Clara University Law School, which is pretty adorable, that they're both lawyers! It's funny though, because James and Jordan actually went to the UC Berkeley for their undergraduate program as well. However the two love birds didn't meet until they attended law school. In a few months I get to attend Jordan's Bridal Shower, it's a garden party themed shower, which is just about all the fun that a wedding blogger can have! Am I right? Pretty darn excited.

Beautiful and lovely photos are from: Melanie Duerkopp Photography

Season of Love

Source: San Francisco Chronicle

Congratulations to My Dear Cousin!

Now that the holiday season is almost over, its time to get back to the season of love (which is really, all year long). I am extremely excited to announce the engagement of my beautiful cousin Jordan Lui to her sweet boyfriend James Holden. They recently got engaged this past veteran's day, 11-11-11. Since then, I couldn't wait to hear how James popped the question during the family holiday festivities.

James had surprised Jordan with a romantic dinner at a downtown San Francisco Fairmont Hotel. Little did Jordan know that they had company when they went to their hotel suite. With the company of a cappella group (University of California Men's Octet) singing the Bruno Mars song "Just the Way You Are" James proposed to Jordan.

Pretty romantic if you ask me. Where's my box of tissues when I need it? Oh yeah, did I forget to mention that James had hired a photographer and videographer to document the special evening. So sweet.

Now it's time for Jordan and James to plan their wedding. I cannot wait! Congrats dear cousins!

View Finder

Source: Beamish Photography
 Weeks ago I had written a blog post I was most excited about on Wedding Window. I am happy to say that today is that day that my blog post went live!

Source: Sara Gray Photography

"Does anyone remember their beloved View-Master toy as a child? This classic toy is making a comeback! These fun View-Masters are making their way into the wedding world. Many couples are incorporating the classic toy into their own weddings as fun detail  … and a way to customize!"

A View Master is a magical thing, don't you think? I simply loved them when I was growing up. (actually, I still do). I am simply infatuated the idea of stereo photography (having 2 lens on your camera) which is kinda what a view master is to make your photo look 3-D. I even bought one off ebay, I love them so much!

Engagement Session in France: Mireen + Markus

Bride: Mireen
Groom: Markus
Occupation: Photographer and Student
Date of Wedding: 08/02/11
Location: The engagement shoot was in the Provence, France
Photographer: Jose Villa 

The Engagement Story
We did a small vacation trip in New York. We both knew we wanted to get married, so Markus and I decided to buy the ring there. He really wanted me to have the ring of my dreams, so we both looked for one together. We found one :-) and he was carrying this ring for a few more days with him and I was waiting when he would propose. 

Finally, on the 6th of January (It was crazy hot! 68 Fahrenheit in January!!!) We were on the famous Bow Bridge in the Central Park where he asked me to marry him. We were really happy and went out for dinner to the Rockefeller Center for dancing and awesome food. For us, it was the perfect day. :-) 

Markus did not get down on one knee when he proposed and I always told him he had to do it before we get married. After 4 years being engaged, we were on vacation in the Dominican Republic and on our last day there, he asked me to go to the beach (early in the morning). I didn't want to go because it was raining really heavy but he really wanted to go. So we did. We arrived at the beach and the sun came out and we saw a beautiful sunrise and he finally got down on his knee to ask me again. Now, we are getting married within the year :-)

What was your inspiration for your engagement session, and how did you achieve it?  Jose and I are friends and I heard he would be coming to Paris as a photographer for a wedding. I asked him if I could help him because it is not far from Germany were I live. He said yes and he also was planning of having some days off to travel. 

So I ask him if we could explore the south of France and he said yes :-) Markus picked us up from Paris and we traveled to the south. After exploring the area, we decided to do our engagement shoot. I wanted to keep it simple and wanted to have the landscape as main feature in the shoot. So we just drove and stopped were Jose told us to stop. He is so amazing and I trust him. I knew I would love the photographs. Jose, thank you so much for being a great friend and inspiration!!!

 Special Thanks to Mireen + Markus for Sharing their lovely Engagement Photos with us!

Engagement Session in Cuba: Catalina + Darren

Bride: Catalina Bloch
Groom: Darren Viau
Occupation: I work full time for AON as an Account Manager and on the side I am a Photographer. Darren owns and runs his own Cafe as well as helping me with my photography
Date of Wedding: January 11, 2011 (engagement photos taken at the same time)
Location: Varadero, Cuba (engagement shoot located in La Habana, Cuba)
Photographer: Jose Villa
Stylist: Joy Thigpen

How did you get engaged? Darren took me up to the cottage after a long night of work . He lit a fire down by the waters edge were he asked me to marry him in Spanish. :) (I'm Spanish)

What was your inspiration for your engagement session, and how did you achieve it? Cuba was the inspiration, with it's rich culture and tropical colours. I can't take credit for any of the styling, this was all thanks to the styling of Joy Thigpen with the help of Lacie Hansen, Jose Villa and Joel Serrato. Everyone pitched in to make this memorable shoot happen.

What kind of story did you want to tell? We didn't really have a story... We just love Cuba. How could you not love the beauty that is La Habana. It's like stepping back in time.

To see the happy couple's beautiful wedding film shot by 
Cat's & Darren's Cinematography: 
Joel Serrato, click here

Engagment Session: Jamie + Wayne

 Intro: I just love looking at engagement session photos! Especially engagement photos that really state who the couple is, and what kind of story the couple has to tell. When I saw Jamie's engagement session, I just wanted to go back to my home town and eat some ice cream! (yes! Jamie and myself are from the same hometown (Sacramento, CA). And in our hometown, there isn't a ice cream parlor better than Vic's Ice Cream.)

When thinking of activities for an engagement sessions, what kind of story do you want to tell? What place has a special meaning to you? What inspires you? These are the kinds of questions that you must ask yourself when planning an engagement session. 

Jamie writes:

My inspiration for our engagement session was to incorporate sweets, vibrant backgrounds, cherry blossom trees, and our dog, Bowser. Wayne and I actually had one of our first dates at Vic's ice cream almost 5 years ago! I thought it would be cute to take pictures at where it all started. Plus, who doesn't love ice cream?!?


The heart shaped sugar cookies with our names and initials on it were favors from my bridal shower. They were too pretty to eat at that time, so I decided to save them for our engagement session. I ended up eating them later though since I have such a sweet tooth.

We took some pictures at Old Town Sacramento too since there are a lot of bold, vibrant buildings and structures that would look great in pictures.

I love cherry blossoms and wanted to take some pictures with the trees in the background; the closest trees i could find to resemble cherry blossoms that still had blooms were over in south land park (a well known park in our town). The pond and grassy areas in south land park made for great pictures too. I also wanted to have our dog, Bowser, in some of our engagement pictures. We treat him like our child, so we had to have some family pictures with our fur baby!

 A Special Thanks to Jamie + Wayne for sharing their lovely and creative Engagement Photos!

All the lovely photographs of Jamie + Wayne's
Engagement Session were taken by: