Stacy and Ian – Coastal Elegance at the Intercontinental, Monterey

I just returned from coordinating a wedding that qualifies for the “Dream Wedding” category on all counts – a beautiful couple, a spectacular location, incredible weather… and then some!

So, let’s start at the beginning – with Stacy and Ian: both of them seasoned singles, wildly successful in their respective careers, independent spirits. They had everything in their lives except for… well, that “significant other.” And then, on January 27 of 2013 (yes, 2013!!), Love struck. Suddenly, unexpectedly. Stacy met Ian – and later that same day, she called her mother and said, “I have met the man with whom I want to share the rest of my life.” Love at first sight, nothing less! From then on, the two had a true whirlwind romance.

engagement photoJust eight weeks later, on April 1st, Ian proposed in a historic castle outside Rotterdam, the Netherlands – beginning with: “This is not an April Fool’s joke…” and putting a huge “rock” on Stacy’s finger. Another four months later, the two got married, and I had the honor of being their wedding coordinator.

For their venue, they chose a spectacular waterfront setting in Monterey: the Intercontinental The Clement Hotel, literally built on the water’s edge.

The morning of Wedding Day was dedicated to pampering and hair and makeup appointments at The Spa at Intercontinental, and the results for the bride, her mother and her bridesmaids were simply beautiful!


The ceremony, officiated by John Kelly,  was held on the oceanfront terrace at 5 in the afternoon, in the presence of 70 of Stacy’s and Ian’s closest friends and family members.



An arch, beautifully decorated by Stems Floral Boutique, with the Pacific Ocean as backdrop, and 725 roses in a symphony of sunset colors lining the aisle provided a truly glorious ceremony setting.

cer from above 2
cer happiness
first kiss

With the Abbott Brothers, a bluegrass band, performing Beatles classics for the processional and recessional, bride, groom and all their guests were immediately transported into a festive and joyful mood.

IMG_1426“Ob-La-Di, Ob-La-Da…” (with the lyrics ever so slightly modified to “Ian and Stacy”) and for the guests to sing along – I’ve never seen a couple happier than these two, dancing down the aisle!

And that was just the beginning… while Stacy and Ian went off for their requisite photo session, guests were enjoying …


cocktail hour in the ballroom…

IMG_1386… lovingly decorated in the couple’s maritime wedding theme: corals, starfish and sand dollars!


And the icing on the cake: a quirky, one-of-a-kind “sardine tin” photo booth!

IMG_1384For the newlyweds, it was still “photo time!” And look, what incredible photos they got from their photographer, Randy Tunnell…


cannery row

And then it was already time for dinner under the stars – out on the patio with a view of the sunset over the Ocean.


The couple, breaking with tradition, enjoyed their First Dance right then and there!

grand entrance


The couple presided over dinner at their rose-bedecked sweetheart table:




Guest tables were decorated with beautiful antique lanterns from the bride’s extensive collection and with nautical rope, sand dollars and corals. Guests were guided to their tables not by conventional escort cards, but – true to the wedding theme – by sand dollars with their names and table numbers tied on:


Every table setting was topped by a favor: a pretty burlap pouch, decorated with – what else? a mini sand dollar! …and containing chocolate bars to satisfy any sweet cravings until cake-cutting time.

When night fell, the ambiance turned romantic…


Following dinner, everyone congregated in the ballroom for dancing to the tunes of DJ Darion of DNA Entertainment, beginning with the traditional Father-Daughter dance. One of the bride’s earliest and dearest memories is her Dad teaching her to dance when she was perhaps five years old, with her feet resting on his to learn the steps – to the sound of “New York, New York.” Needless to say that this was the song chosen for this special dance, and it became a truly magical moment!

Father Daughter Dance 1

Then there was more dancing, and a cake to cut – a little masterpiece by Freedom Bakery, decorated with rope motifs, seashells and sand dollars – so beautiful and so delicious!


cake cuttingStacy’s and Ian’s first official task as husband and wife: cutting the cake and feeding each other! Guests loved it… and photographer Randy Tunnell recorded every precious moment throughout the day.

It was a beautiful, elegant, joyful, romantic wedding- and I was reminded one more time why I love my job so much!

IMG_1459Thanks, Stacy and Ian, for letting me be a part of your Great Day, and a long and happy life together!



A Year in Glorious Wedding Dresses: All My Brides!

Happy New Year to all my readers, and, of course, to all my brides (and grooms) for whom 1/1/14 marks their first New Year as husband and wife!

Traditionally, the transition to a new year always invites to also look back to the year we just completed, and I’d like to follow that tradition – with a twist! Let’s look back to the glorious dresses my ever-so-creative and chic brides chose for their Great Day.

And the winner is… no, no, that’s up to each and every one of you who the winner is! I can only tell you the winner by numbers, and that is the classic A-line dress with a fitted bodice, still close to the body around the hips, and gently flaring below to a more or less dramatic train. Universally flattering, this style is quite versatile – embellished with ruching, lace, embroidery, appliqués, made from various materials, and with necklines as different as “sweetheart” or “asymmetrical, “with trains of varying lengths, not two A-line dresses are alike. Have a look:

Stacys dress


Kimens dress

Taras dress

Then there are the “trumpet” gowns – basically a more form-fitting A-line close to the body down to nearly knee-height with a flare below the knee.

Natashas dressHere in precious lace – and the next one in silk sateen

with a long, long train:

Tinas dress

Here comes an asymmetrical neckline – quite unique!

Valeries dress

Surprisingly, none of my brides chose a classical ballgown style – nor a “mermaid” dress, either (mermaid dresses are figure-hugging down to mid-calf height and require – let’s face it – nothing less but a supermodel figure! And even then they are not for the faint of heart!). But what else my brides chose definitely deserves your attention.

We had the demure, elegant, covered-up style:

Peggys dress

… and a nostalgic look (a family heirloom dress, nothing less!)

Cherice dress


One of my brides had her dress custom-tailored with a dramatic back and a lace “overcoat” to wear as a cover-up for the ceremony:

Virginias dress backvirginias dress frontAnother one wore a feathery, bead-embroidered confection that could have passed as an elegant cocktail dress:

Cassies dressCassies dress 2

The floor-length shift dress made a come-back in high style and elegance, the first one by Reem Acra…

Alexas dress


… and this one by Jin Wang;Janes dress

And last, but certainly not least, the two “stunners” in our show!

Number one: a Vera Wang dress …

Diahanns dress

and number two: an ultra-luxurious gown of pale champagne silk duchesse with precious lace appliqué and a dramatic train:

Sherris dress


I bet you are! And now – pick your own very favorite!

My Portfolio

I am not only the author of Wedding Woof, I am also planning and designing elegant, personalized weddings at the most beautiful venues in the San Francisco Bay Area and all of Northern California. My business is “A Day Like No Other,” and that’s what I design for my couples – a dream Wedding Day! As a Professional Wedding Consultant,  trained and certified by the Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants, and as the Events Committee Chair for the SF Bay Area Chapter of the Wedding Industry Professionals Association, I bring experience, expertise and enthusiasm to my wedding projects – and I would love to do yours, too! Please contact me at

Inspired by Spring, sunny weather and blue skies, I just created an engagement video shoot to capture the magic of young love – with nature in bloom and a radiant couple. This could be your engagement! And for your bachelorette party, I came up with an elegant “Roaring Twenties” theme… enjoy! For the groom, I created an Andy Warhol-themed bachelor party, complete with an original vintage Mustang convertible, an Andy Warhol look-alike, and Sixties/Seventies hits on the karaoke machine in a hip bar… And what comes after engagement, bachelor and bachelorette parties? Wedding Day, of course! And here it is – what yours could be like: Pamela and John’s Wedding by A Day Like No Other! And here are two more: Alexa and Sean’s Wedding, Tara and Mike’s Wedding, and Valerie and Andrew, also by A Day Like No Other, of course… Now, I hope you are getting inspired!

Please look up my reviews and praise from my clients here.

Michelle & Philipp

A true fairytale wedding at a country estate, complete with a horse-drawn carriage and a French Chateau surrounded by formal gardens.

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Angie & Michael

An elegant wedding at a historic mansion on a sunny day in May, with friends and extended families from all over the world.

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Alexa & Sean

The two had a dream wedding with a “vintage glamour San Francisco” theme at the General’s Residence at Fort Mason overlooking the Bay.

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Diahann Brent title reduced sizeDiahann & Brent

A happy union of feminine romance and urban chic in a hip downtown hotel, surrounded by iconic San Francisco architecture.

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Jane & Greg

Sophisticated elegance and Art Deco glamour at the Julia Morgan Ballroom in downtown San Francisco for an unforgettable wedding celebration.

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Katherine & David

“A Midsummernight’s Dream” was the theme for this truly romantic wedding in beautiful Carmel Valley.

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Jeff_Adam_October_11_2014_0589 copyJeff & Adam

A four-day wedding weekend at a vineyard for closest family and friends, with a ceremony under a 100-year-old tree and alfresco dinner.

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Pamela John swing copy croppedPamela & John

A working ranch high up on a mountain overlooking San Francisco Bay was the romantic setting for this joyful, carnival-themed wedding.

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Vannie Richard 2 smallVannie & Richard

Unusual, quirky and sunny and unique – that’s how this couple had envisioned their wedding day. Have a look!

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Tara - SunsetTara & Michael

The quaint town of Carmel-by-the Sea was the romantic setting for this lavish destination wedding.

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Catherine Jithun croppedCatherine & Jithun

A sunset ceremony with a view of the San Francisco Bay, an Italian gourmet dinner and a joyful dance party to follow.

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Natasha - rolls-resized croppedNatasha & Fabian

A traditional wedding celebration with a full Catholic Mass, a lavish dinner and a Latin dance party to follow.

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Shaina 2Shaina & Erik

An elegant affair at the famous Four Seasons of San Francisco – with Tea Ceremony, dinner and a ball.

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Marissa Jordan Max enhancedMarissa & Jordan

A wedding in a famous recording studio with canine companion Max in starched collar, bow tie and cuffs – and a seven piece band to mix it up.

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IMG_9235 croppedStacy & Ian

Coastal elegance at the Intercontinental The Clement in Monterey – impressionist views and high design.

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Valerie Andrew title reduced sizeValerie & Andrew

French-international flair in a romantic country club setting, a ceremony under a centuries-old oak tree on a picture-perfect day.

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Laura DennisLaura & Dennis

Tuscany came to the Napa Wine Country at this wedding at a secluded private estate with an enchanted garden.

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erica_lincoln copyErica & Lincoln

With both bride and groom professional musicians and the bride an amateur astronomer, the theme of this wedding was: music and the stars!

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Alan Miles croppedAlan & Miles

Smitten by the beauty of the Ocean, this couple tied the knot in the spectacular setting of a world-renowned aquarium.

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Amy&Tec_593 copy smallAmy & Tec

A multicultural wedding, honoring the bride’s Chinese and the Groom’s Korean heritage as well as their connection to San Francisco.

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Amy+and+John+0280-3597522700-O copy smallAmy & John

Rustic elegance in the great outdoors with nostalgic décor and lavish lighting, dinner dancing under the stars.

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Kimen croppedKimen & Rob

A quintessential Californian wedding on a patio above the Pacific, surrounded by family and many friends.

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Lauren and Francisco1Lauren & Francisco

Whimsy, nostalgia and charm are the key words for Lauren’s and Francisco’s relaxed wedding party with kids and family.

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Sherri- Back Window View of Couple croppedSherri & Zenon

A couple from Canada, celebrating their destination wedding in San Francisco with more than one hundred guests.

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dining tbl resizedCassie & Jason

An elegant wedding at a private estate amidst lush gardens, dining under towering trees and dancing under the stars.

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rings croppedCherice & Michael

The charm of a century-old historic venue, handmade decor and a celebration for friends and family under romantic string lights.

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Virgina & Mick

A romantic outdoor ceremony at a historic San Francisco venue, followed by a dance party at the hip, urban-chic “The Box SF”.

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IMG_1742 cropped_2Tina & Eric

A magical day on the Beach for a feet-in-the-sand ceremony and a relaxed reception with traditional clam chowder.

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Nicole & Isaac

A family festivity in a Redwood grove honoring the bride’s German heritage, their Jewish upbringing, and their love of all things handmade.

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Peggy & Jose

A lighthearted, quirky, artsy celebration for friends and family with fun, good food and drink – and the couple’s dog Lucky in attendance!

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Wedding in Green

Inspirations for a wedding theme with green as the accent color. From the bride’s bouquet to emerald jewelry and a rustic dinner spread.

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WestinStFrancis_StyledShoot_SHHIVIKACHAUHANPHOTOGRAPHY126 copy smallWestin St. Francis Hotel

A photo shoot showing high elegance in dramatic wedding dresses, exquisite jewelry and gorgeous floral décor at one of SF’s most famous venues.

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Four SeasonsFour Seasons Hotel

Urban cool and masculine chic with SF city lights as our backdrop was the theme of this stylized photo shoot at the elegant Four Seasons.

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Mandarin OrientalMandarin Oriental Hotel

Wedding Industry Professionals Association 2014 kick-off meeting on the 40th floor Sky Deck of the Mandarin-Oriental Hotel SF.

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Montalvo- villa car largerVilla Montalvo

An elegant luncheon for wedding Industry professionals at one of the Bay Area’s premier wedding venues: Villa Montalvo.

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FHCH reopening croppedGrand Reopening

An animated reopening party at a historic San Francisco wedding venue with food, wine, music and great company.

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Festive Luncheon

The Wedding Industry Professionals Association kicked off the year 2013 with a festive luncheon at the famous Westin St. Francis in San Francisco.

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Great Gatsby Party

In the style of the Roaring Twenties, a party full of elegant extravagance  – from flapper dresses to ostrich feathers and dripping crystals…

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Elegant Invitations

Custom calligraphed invitations in crystal-embellished silk folders set an elegant tone for a Tiffany-inspired dream wedding.

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Antique  Books

Antique books took center stage at a librarian’s wedding last summer. Here are the creative designs for the dinner table centerpieces.

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Soiree smallerLa Soiree

Design with French flair for a gala event of the French-American Chamber of Commerce SF – Paris throughout the seasons.

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Urban Chic

Dark glamour for a dance party in a former factory: mirrors, gems and candles complementing rocks, branches and black velvet roses.

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Peacock Feathers

An stunning escort card display of 220 peacock feathers for an elegant vintage San Francisco wedding theme.

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