The Dogs in our Lives – and our Weddings!

Dear Canines, I have to offer you my sincerest apologies. I have shamefully neglected you lately, writing about your humans only. Which is not right – among other things because of the name of this publication: Wedding Woof!

So here’s to the “woofs” in Wedding Woof – and especially to those who were or will be stars in my weddings at A Day Like No Other! After all, I am the only wedding planner in all of Northern California specializing in dog-friendly weddings… so, now I’ll finally live up to that reputation and give all my readers a glimpse of how my couples have included (or will include) their beloved companions in their weddings.

Let’s start with Natasha and Fabian. They had a very traditional wedding with a full Catholic Mass for their ceremony, followed by a huge celebration for close to 250 guests. Their beloved boxer girl wasn’t allowed at the Church (of course not…) nor at their venue. But the two found a way!

Natasha and FabianThey headquartered in a beautiful dog-friendly hotel very close to their reception venue – and that’s where they spent the night before their wedding, the morning of their wedding day and later on their First Night (Inn at the Presidio). That way they had their pretty canine with them most of the time (and for the photos, of course!) – and while they were away, she was lovingly being taken care of onsite, just waiting for her humans to return to her at the end of the day, “just married!”

“Lucky” was even luckier! Her people (Peggy and Jose) got married outside, so their rambunctious puppy was allowed to stay onsite – but the waiting time until finally she was allowed close to her master and mistress again, stretched to near infinity for her…

Peggy and Lucky

Now it’s time for a walk – off to married bliss!

Next up: Pastis and Milo! They were allowed to accompany their humans (Valerie and Andrew) all the time at their very dog-friendly wedding venue (Pasadera Golf Club, now Jack Nicklaus Golf Club, in Monterey). They even were the pro-forma ring bearers…

Milo and Pastis

Now come – two Cody’s!

Cody no. 1 is living with Amy and Tec who will get married in San Francisco in August. I happen to know because I am their wedding planner! And Cody happens to know, too – he actually mailed the “Save-the-dates:”

Amy Tec CodyIsn’t that cute?!

And here’s one more cutie: Cody no. 2. He is living with Pamela and John, and he will definitely be the star at their wedding in July:

Pams furbaby codyHis humans went to great lengths to find a totally dog-friendly venue so he could be with them all the time. Diablo Ranch in Walnut Creek proved to be the perfect choice for a wedding celebration equally kid- and dog-friendly, with a carnival theme and lots of fun for everyone.

Last but not least there is Buzz, an Australian Shepherd, without whom his Master’s wedding would have been – unthinkable! So Philipp, his loving Dad, and Michelle, his Mom-to-be, went on a quest to find an elegant but dog-friendly venue. On a hot day in August, they and their constant companion Buzz visited and instantaneously fell in love with Stonepine Estate in Carmel Valley. Said the groom, “Buzz used the first moment we were distracted to escape and jump into the reflecting pool – to emerge dripping and dirty, shaking vigorously, a total mess… Michelle and I were sure that that was the end of our wedding dreams at Stonepine! They would never let us come back. In a word, we were heartbroken. But – miracles still happen! Instead of being shocked, someone appeared with a stack of fluffy white bath towels for the canine visitor’s convenience… needless to say, that’s where we got married, with Buzz in attendance!”


Please share your story –

ACPWC Napa Spring Tour – What a Day!

As my faithful readers know, I graduated from ACPWC (Association of Certified Professional Wedding Consultants) and also earned my “Professional Wedding Consultant” title there – my solid foundation for my work as a wedding planner and designer, my starting point and everyday resource. I loved that school! But ACPWC is way more than only a school – it’s a nationwide professional organization for wedding industry professionals with a continuing education program for members. Part of that are organized  site and venue visits. And here we are: the Spring Tour this year – a whole day of wedding venue visits – went to the SF Wine Country. To Napa Valley, to be exact; membership chair Angie Mack had again outdone herself in putting all that together! Deborah Moody, our tireless Executive Director, came with us, and Social Media Chair Miranda Meisenbach recorded and posted right away what we ladies were up to during the day.

And here we go: starting point was the Springhill Suites Marriott Napa Valley hotel, where we were not only treated to a tour of the property, but to breakfast and a Welcome Bag as well!

It’s a newer property offering the Wine Country Wedding experience at a moderate price point, but with everything one expects from a Wine Country getaway – pool and fitness center, 100 all-suite guest rooms, ball rooms and a tent for weddings up to 250 guests, as well as a ceremony lawn where a Tuscan-style setting is a beautiful backdrop for a wedding ceremony.

OR – the ceremony could be held at the quaint St. Joan of Arc Cathedral Church in nearby Yountville…

It has retained the simple charm of a little village church “that Time forgot…”

Another unexpected discovery was to follow right away: stylish North Block hotel in Yountville. Never heard of it? Me neither… it’s got a new owner, a new name, and a beautiful new makeover and concept for weddings!

With the nostalgic appeal of a Mediterranean village, a central plaza where the onsite restaurant puts out tables and chairs and where brides can say their vows at the antique fountain on the plaza, the 20-room luxury boutique hotel is a total secret even to wedding industry insiders. A beautiful pool was beckoning … (as you can see, it was the perfect hot summer day in the Wine Country!)

… and the hotel’s Redd Wood restaurant looked just as inviting, with lots of French bistro character and unique design touches:

North Block is, by the way, dog-friendly for ceremony and outside cocktail hour, so bring your furry friend, as ring bearer or as witness to your nuptials! North Block also offers a unique approach to planning an intimate Wine Country Wedding – a hotel buyout. Just imagine to have the whole little “village” to yourselves and your closest friends and family who’d occupy the guest rooms; you could be married right there on the plaza, have your cocktail hour there and dine in that wonderfully nostalgic “pizzeria” (where the chef will customize your gourmet menu – don’t be fooled by the “pizzeria” sign in the window!!) – and then you can dance under the stars. North Block can accommodate weddings of ca. 50 guests – so, small affairs only – but that they do in high style!

After lunch at Pacific Blues Cafe on the Yountville “town square,” we went to visit the Domaine Chandon winery where exquisite “bubblies” are produced in the French method, “methode Champenoise.” Go and try the finished product – it’s delicious!

The Champagne develops in huge barrels – or rather, tanks! – it’s really impressive:

… and then you can sit back in the ultramodern tasting room and enjoy, enjoy, enjoy…

… which we did, later! First we toured the beautiful property which is extremely sought-after for elegant weddings. Small wonder…

… especially since only six (SIX!!) can be held there per year! But just look at the possibilities:

Shaded lawns with views of the valley, intimate patios and grottos, a dining room (Etoile, a true star – of the Michelin variety, no less!) in a streamlined modern design – Chandon can accommodate elegant weddings from 12 to 120. A dream! And then we wrapped up with their rosé Champagne on the patio. We could have just stayed there for the rest of the day…

… but more site visits were awaiting! Next stop: the combined property of Vintage Estate (super dog-friendly!!) and Villagio Inn and Spa –  another Italian/French fantasy with more than 200 beautiful guest rooms, flowing waterways, palm trees and blooming flowers everywhere.

It’s a whole little Mediterranean town in itself with restaurants, pools, and a world-class spa… and what’s even more, the “old” spa building was converted into a get-ready house for the bridal party, with a sitting room, mani/pedi/hair/make-up room, its own steam sauna and pool AND its own kitchen! Can be rented for the whole wedding day… simply fabulous! Ceremonies for small parties as well as for large weddings can be accommodated on site…

… followed by cocktails, dining and dancing – under the stars or in the rustic-nostalgic “Barrel Room” until two in the morning…

Make it a whole destination wedding weekend for yourselves and for your guests – so much to do! There is a golf course, tennis courts, pools, the spa and the restaurants, the quaint little town of Yountville and the beauty of the Wine Country beyond. It’ll be unforgettable for everyone!

Last visit of the day was to Black Stallion Winery on the world-famous Silverado Trail:

Situated on the grounds of an old equestrian estate, Black Stallion Winery offers a spectacular setting for a California Wine Country Wedding experience. Terraces and patios and several indoor spaces – including the historic Barrel Room – lend themselves to flights of wedding design fancy, blooming, romantic, rustic, nostalgic – as you like it!

Not even to mention Black Stallion’s world-class wines to accompany any meal… your guests will be in Bacchus’ Heaven! (as were we ourselves, after all that delicious wine tasting…)

With that, our excursion concluded – we were all so full of new impressions, exciting (wedding) possibilities, so exhausted and so happy! What an incredible tour!

Sylvan Lake – a Hidden Gem in the Wine Country

Last weekend, I made an incredible discovery: a hidden gem of a wedding venue in the Bay Area Wine Country! It’s totally unknown, totally private and secluded, it’s a beautiful enchanted garden, it’s even dog-friendly… what else can I say? It’s simply a treasure.

Sylvan Lake is high up in the mountains above picturesque St. Helena, but even after having lived in the Bay Area for more than a decade, and – of course – having visited the Wine Country countless times, I had no idea that Sylvan Lake existed, or where it might be. And just driving by, you would never suspect what’s hidden behind this unassuming driveway. Nor would the owners want it to be any other way.

John and Luise bought the property fifty years ago. Yes, fifty. And they’ve been working on it every single day, making it better and more beautiful, modernizing it inside while keeping the romantic facade overgrown with ivy – a storybook house. And, of course, they’ve lovingly tended to the gardens, and – as you will see – it shows.

The  most amazing thing, however, is, that the two wish to share the beauty and romance of their hidden treasure with others, to make young couples’ special day – even more special. And so, for many years, they’ve opened their doors for weddings, but never more than just 15 a year – so they can focus on every single event. John has amassed a whole inventory of things that you’d expect to have to bring: he has heat lamps and props, he’ll string dozens of Chinese lanterns across the expanse of the lawn and hang them from the trees, he’ll provide bar tables, market umbrellas and small patio lights and, and… It’s his joy and pride to provide a beautiful setting for a young couple’s most beautiful event.

John’s and Luise’s house looks like straight out of a storybook:

… and this is from where the bride would walk down the aisle to where the ceremony would take place: under an enormous old olive tree:

… and when the couple is officially pronounced “husband and wife,” John will let the world know by ringing his historic bell:

whose sound literally carries throughout the valley. Talk about romance…

The wedding party can then begin on the big lawn:

….surrounded by towering trees, blooming flowerbeds and impeccably pruned boxwood hedges. When night falls, the scenery turns magical under the Chinese lanterns, and dancing starts – to whatever music you’d like, live, DJ – your choice! And with a few restrictions, you can party into the wee hours of the morning – a very rare treat! By the way, John, a trained concert pianist, keeps his Baldwin grand piano perfectly tuned at all times, and while he will not play himself – his fingers, he says, are not that nimble any more – he’ll invite whoever will play at the wedding, and with the living room windows wide open, its glorious sound fills the garden.

I begged John to play a little bit for me – and he obliged, right there – in the middle of his incessant gardening chores:

He hardly ever says no! Another thing he can’t say No to is – young couples bringing their beloved dogs to their wedding. As long as he or she is kept on a leash and supervised, John and Luise welcome canines at weddings. After all, their “Lady” and her daughter “Piglet” are the joy of their lives!

But John’s and Luise’s hospitality doesn’t stop here – for the newlyweds, they open their cute little cottage so they can spend their first night on the property:

…complete with living room, bathrooms, kitchen and bedroom under the eaves… and that is part of the package.

And even that is not all. On top of everything else, John and Luise invite the young couple to their historic farmhouse in Italy for a whole week of honeymoon! It’s a building from the 16th century, lovingly restored and modernized inside (by the indefatigable John himself, of course!), and it’s situated in a side valley of the Italian Alps, beneath Monte Rosa, in a region still untouched by tourism.

With such generosity, small wonder then that all the couples who have tied the knot under John’s and Luise’s olive tree over the years have remained friends – many of them returning to Sylvan Lake unannounced to show the two a tiny bundle, their own pride and joy. And that’s the biggest reward for John and Luise.

I am sure that by now you’re hooked! Contact me if you’d like to have your own wedding at Sylvan Lake – email



A True Fairytale Wedding: Michelle and Philipp

Michelle and Philipp did not only have a fairytale wedding – more of that in a moment – but just as much a fairytale courtship: born and raised at opposite ends of the world (Michelle in Inner Mongolia, Philipp in Germany), the two met in College, at the University of Southern California, literally during their first week in their first semester. Despite all that might have stood in their way, like having no language in common and coming from vastly different cultural backgrounds, they were inseparable from day one. They were truly made for one another! And they did everything together, studying, movies, playing sports:

And that’s why they decided to get married just out of College, and they made me their wedding planner. They entrusted to me the design as well as the organization of their wedding celebration, literally everything from their invitations to their Rehearsal Dinner, choice of venue to guest accommodations, from the dress to the groomsmen gifts, and, of course, the Great Day itself. They choose Tiffany blue as their wedding color – and this idea then carried through to all the details, the invitations, the bridesmaids dresses, the linens, the favors, the jewelry – and even the cake.

The wedding was held at Stonepine Estate, an equestrian estate in Carmel Valley – 330 acres of rolling hills and forests, vineyards and horse trails, and a French-Mediterranean chateau in the middle, surrounded by formal gardens.

Definitely an appropriately magnificent setting for a fairytale wedding!

Here is the dress (by Priscilla of Boston) displayed with gorgeous bouquets from Christine Cater Floral Design:

… and here is the bride getting ready for the great moment:

Bride and groom were transported to the ceremony in style: in a horse drawn carriage:

Guests arrived from all over the world – Germany, France, China, Canada, the East Coast – to attend their outdoor ceremony in the formal gardens of the Chateau:

“You may now kiss the bride!”

Now happily married, the two proceeded to cut their cake (by Cake Coquette) and enjoy their First Dance, but first the husband carried his young wife across the water…

… to the Pool Pavilion, where, serenaded by a String Quartet, the two proceeded to perform their official first task together: cutting the cake which not only resembled a stack of Tiffany boxes, but actually contained ONE real box, filled with a pearl bracelet (the cake had to be guarded until the bride found her special gift!)

Then it was time for their First Dance, traditionally to the tune of Johann Strauss’ “Blue Danube,” music that even Michelle’s parents had come to know and love in China. Videographer Andrew Hsu captured every precious moment.

While their guests enjoyed an al fresco reception under blue skies, the couple had a photo shoot with photographer Kevin Chin in the Stonepine park…

… some official ones…

… some right out of “Alice in Wonderland” – but also some riskier poses on the diving board:

The two did NOT take the plunge, but returned to join their guests on the lawn…

… where their beloved four-legged companion, Buzz, was already waiting for them.

Everyone then took a short break…


Buzz couldn’t wait to finally sit down with closest friends and family for the wedding dinner on the loggia (well, Buzz, seated with his dog walker, dined a little bit away from the party, but got to enjoy the same entree of Filet Mignon…)

It was a wonderful conclusion to a one-of-a-kind day:

Congratulations and best wishes, Michelle, Philipp and Buzz! Your wedding was a fairytale – may your married life be one, too!


Wedding Coordination and Design: A Day Like No Other

Thanks to my Dream Team:

Venue and Catering: Stonepine Estate

Invitations: The Desk Set

Dress: Priscilla of Boston

Jewelry: Tiffany

Cake: Cake Coquette

Hair and Makeup: Triple Twist

Flowers: Christine Cater Floral Design

Photography: Kevin Chin Photography

Videography: Andrew Hsu / Studio MSV

Ceremony and Reception Music: Karsten Windt String Quartet

Dinner Music: Matisse Freimark, ph. 831-722-8131

Transportation: City Express Limousine Service




Downtown Design (plus Dog!) – fab fetes @ sfdc

This weekend I had the honor and the pleasure to assist my friend Duncan – none less than the famed Duncan Reyes of Events by Design ( – in a very hip wedding celebration at the San Francisco Design Center. You didn’t know that was possible at all, I bet! It’s a pretty spectacular and ubercool venue, I can tell you that much. AND, Wedding WOOF readers listen up: it’s dog-friendly! Unbelievable.

First things first. sfdc is located in the heart of the Design District in San Francisco at 101 Henry Adams Street – a historic brick warehouse from the outside…

…and totally hip and cutting-edge modern from the inside:

The ground floor holds up to 1,000 guests (yes, you got that right!) and the four floors rising above hold another 200 each. That should be plenty for any wedding celebration! You can rent either the first floor only or the first floor and additional floors. And the first floor is, lo and behold, dog friendly! As long as Fido is leashed and supervised, he (or she…) is welcome. So, brides and grooms, bring your beloved four-legged companion to your nuptials! Just make sure your darling can leave before the music gets too loud (not good at all for sensitive doggie ears!) or dinner is served (SF Health Code gets in the way…) You could still pack a doggie bag for doggie and send him/her home with a loving caregiver while you are dining, drinking, and dancing the night away!

Organizing a fabulous fete at sfdc isn’t that hard: They offer tables and chairs, in-house bar service, and dramatic in-house lighting. Add catering, florals, and music – there you go! Julia Wagner, Galleria Events Manager, will take care of all your needs (, and Chuck Davis is in charge of the lighting (

Our wonderful couple – Mo and Jason – and fabulous Duncan Reyes added quite some more; from additional atmosphere lighting and table pinspotting (…

custom linens and stunning florals from Tanjeeryn Designs (

to delicacies from Melons Catering ( and a beautiful wedding cake from Chef Bala at The Cakemaker ( The festivities were documented by well-known photographer Guru Khalsa ( and first-rate musical entertainment for their guests was provided  by Synchronicity Strings (, ceremony and reception music)…

…followed by DJ Jason Mitchell performing ( – and, WOW, did he get the crowd going! Mo and Jason had the time of their lives, that’s for sure.

They used the sfdc ground floor for their ceremony – second floor for cocktail hour – then back to the ground floor for the rest of the evening with dinner and dancing. Perfect!

And here are a few more impressions of what YOUR wedding at the sfdc could look like:


So – inspired, all your hip, urban-chic, dog-loving brides and grooms? Go for it! Happy planning!


It’s a Dog’s Life…

Dear readers who keep coming back to Wedding Woof mainly because of the “Woof” part – here’s to you!

Our own “woof,” Buzz, has a beautiful girlfriend (of course) whom he goes to visit regularly – Sage – and she sent him a boudoir shot of herself today – in diva pose! It’s the incarnation of sheer bliss… I’ll come back as a dog!!

Diva Sage

Real Weddings: Westie Wedding with WOW!

It was a warm July day when Pharmacist Dr. Banjie Quiambao married her Prince Charming, Ed Vergara, JD. The traditional Catholic ceremony took place at St. Mary’s Parish in Gilroy with Father Dan Derry presiding.
Waiting in the wings, donned in his tuxedo and boutonniere and looking like the most handsome boy in the world, was their fur-baby, Riley, a Westie-Terrier mix with the perfect piggie-pink nose.  Once the wedding got started, wedding planner Patty Speirs of Every Last Detail went back to to the bride’s house to pick up the Pup of Honor, who was as cool as a cucumber riding shotgun.  Once at the church, he nearly stole the show with all the oo’s and ahh’s and plenty of smiles and pats on the head as the ceremony progressed.
As the New Mr. and Mrs. Vergara walked back down the aisle, Riley was there to congratulate them.
After the formal photographs at the church, Riley took an early leave…
..and headed home while Mom and Dad headed to the reception in style via classic Rolls Royce, chauffeured by George from Elegant Journey Limousine.
The bride and groom arrived at the Monterey Embassy Suites in time to sneak into the ballroom to see it in all its beauty and splendor with decor provided by LauraT decor.  The tables were named after prescription drugs, a nod to Banjie’s career…
… and the favors were medicine vials full of yummy candies – with special prescription labels and instructions to take two a day for happiness! (No bitter medicine today…)
The guests imbibed with Banja-lini’s and Vergartini’s – signature drinks named after the bride and groom – and had a blast letting loose in the photobooth provided by Peninsula Photo Booth.
The cake was created by Freedom Bakery, and the WOW factor was a surprise visit and performances by Dean Martin, on loan from the Rat Pack.

Dean Martin with wedding planner Patty

All in all, a classy, elegant and fun wedding celebration with WOW and WOOF!
Wedding Planner: Every Last Detail,
Transportation: Elegant Journey,
Venue: Monterey Embassy Suites,
Peninsula Photo Booth,
Freedom Bakery,

Live from Duncan’s Downtown Birthday “Madness!”

A minute ago I returned  home from a FABULOUS event, and I’m still all giddy about it – Duncan’s Downtown Bday party! Duncan – who? Duncan Reyes, of course – who certainly does NOT need any kind of introduction. But, should you by any chance not belong to the 99.9% of people “in the know” who he is: he is the “wedding guru of the Bay Area,” as quite a few of his guests reverently referred to him. And, believe me, he deserves every bit of that honorary title!

Just back from orchestrating a HUGE wedding in Mumbai, India (the talk of the evening was a whispered total cost in the 7-digit range…), Duncan used his regular “Martini Madness” events for colleagues and friends for an early Birthday celebration – and tout le (chic!) monde flocked to Infusion Lounge in downtown San Francisco to join in the celebration. And I was lucky enough to be one of them!

Duncan, the devoted doggie Dad (to his diva, “Bella”) and I, equally devoted doggie Mom to “Buzz,”  (the “Woof” in Wedding Woof) immediately found out that we are sharing a big interest! Here he is with his furry muse:

Beautiful, no?

Well, “beautiful” was definitely the motto of the evening… starting with the location: Infusion Lounge, an ultra-hip bar in the heart of San Francisco, bathed in truly magical lighting:

Talk about chic… and the guests were definitely a crowd to match – a Who’s Who of the Bay Area’s foremost wedding professionals: fellow event coordinator Tony White of Extreme Elegance, BluBungalow Event Studio founder Hazel Bourget, Anastasia Alvarado of Grace Street Catering, event and catering managers Cristina Lopez of Kimpton Hotels and Katie Orndorff and Siba Tarassoly of Marriott – who assured me that both all Kimpton Hotels (Argonaut, Harbor Court, and Tuscan Inn in SF) and the downtown Marriott are, in fact, very dog-friendly! So listen up, all the “Woof” fans of Wedding Woof… that’s for you and your four-legged darlings! On to Robbie Schlosser of Magnolia Jazz Band who has been entertaining guests in the Bay Area since 1975 and rightfully considers himself a “veteran” – and whom, in fact, absolutely everyone greeted affectionately – “everyone knows Robbie!” Olympic Gold for the highest presence by sheer numbers, however, goes to the photographers who transform all these incredible events into tangible memories: Alex Ho, Auey Santos, Orbie Pullen and husband-and-wife team Ariel and Samuel Soto-Suver of Bowerbird Photography, “senior statesman” Richard Mayer, and Mike Steelman with the one-of-a kind steel (!) engraved business card… as I said – le Beau Monde, and brimming with creativity!

Birthday Boy Duncan took personal care of each and every one of his guests, inviting them to fun photo shoots in a photo booth with lots of hilarious props (think masks, hats, neon feather boas…) while his Mom and Sis were proudly looking on. He certainly is the quintessential, perfect party host!

Thanks for having us all, Duncan, and have a wonderful, successful and totally happy new year in your life!


Duncan Reyes/ Events by Design,

Infusion Lounge,

Tony White/ Extreme Elegance,

Hazel Bourget/ BluBungalow,

Anastasia Alvarado/ Grace Street Catering,

Cristina Lopez/Kimpton Hotels,

Katie Orndorff/Marriott SF,

Siba Tarassoly/Marriott SF,

Robbie Schlosser, Magnolia Jazz Band,

Alex Ho,

Auey Santos/Photograffiti,

Orbie Pullen,

Ariel and Samuel Soto-Suver/Bowerbird Photography,

Richard Mayer,

Mike Steelman,









REAL Weddings: VIPs (Very Important Pups) and Their People!

When oncology nurse Dominique Augimeri and emergency room physician Rory Smith decided to tie the knot it was crystal-clear from the get-go that it was to be a family affair – family being their two English Bulldogs, Quebert and Mirra.

Dominique’s and Rory’s picturesque venue for their cliff side ceremony, The Highland’s Inn in Carmel-by-the-Sea, was the perfect meeting of the mountains and the sea – quite a change from their desert home!  Heavens smiled on their afternoon wedding ceremony with unexpectedly beautiful weather, considering it was April AND it had hailed immediately after the rehearsal concluded the day before.  Wedding planner Patty Speirs offered VIP (Very Important Pups) care to Q and Mirra, chauffeuring them to the wedding, getting them dressed in their wedding attire – he in a bow tie and she in a ruffled tu-tu in “Shocking Pink” – and bringing  them in for their grand entrance.

The two four legged stars were greeted with Ohh’s and Ahh’s and were just short of stealing the show for their “Mom” and “Dad.” Having the fur-babies as part of the celebration and mingle with family and friends was, hands-down, the icing on the (wedding) cake!


Speaking of which: While Dominique’s and Rory’s wedding color was Caribbean Blue with orange accents, they made ONE design exception: as a wag to their dogs, Patisserie Bechler of Pacific Grove applied brown paw prints running up the three-tiered wedding cake!


Although the pups choose to make an early exit, they were OF COURSE included in the official wedding photos. Planner Patty had vowed to get that perfect family portrait (the “mantel shot” as she referred to it), and photographers George and Cindy McCullough – fellow dog lovers! – captured the magic and made it happen. See for yourself:

The day was just perfect for Dominique and Rory – surrounded by all the important people in their lives, including their canine “kids.”  They wouldn’t have had it any other way…


Venue: Hyatt Carmel Highlands, michele.costa@hyatt.comCaterer: In House; Photographer: McCullough Photography, phototeam@mcculloughphotography.comFlorist: CC Creations, cc.creations@earthlink.comHair & Make Up: Salon at Lincoln Lane, salonatlincolnlane@gmail.comEvent and Wedding Coordination: Every Last Detail, patty@eldweddings.comCeremony ,Cocktail Hour and Reception Music: Steve Ezzo Entertainment, ezzoentertainment@comcast.netWedding Cake: Patisserie Bechler,




Dogs Shop Till They Drop – at Diggidy Dog!

Ask our dog Buzz (the “woof” in Wedding Woof) where he wants to go, and he’ll tell you: not to the beach, not to the dog park, but to his all-time favorite dog store: Diggidy Dog in Carmel-by-the-Sea. Diggidy Dog is as fun and upbeat as its name, and truly dog heaven in the middle of the probably most dog-friendly city in all of California. Buzz will find his way to the store from anywhere (literally), even if we haven’t been to Carmel for a whole year (as just happened). Today he marched toward the store and right inside with us in tow and immediately succumbed to a serious attack of shopping frenzy. Have a look and feel with him:

He immediately began shopping (with my wallet) meaning he started choosing his favorite treats from the bins conveniently displayed within his reach.

He zeroed in on a new delicacy – lamb oesophagus. I guess you have to be a dog to truly appreciate how good that is. The first one was gone in no time. Our task was just to trail behind and keep track of what our darling was devouring on the go!

Diggidy Dog is run by Napisa and Jeff Pollock, a cute husband-and-wife team of dog lovers/owners, and has been a fixture in downtown Carmel as long as I can think back. As you can see, it’s not only appealing to dog tastes but simply beautiful and stylish for the dogs’ human companions as well!

Here we are all three – Buzz, owner Napisa (who gave him a big decorated cookie as a welcome gift “after all that time away,” ) and me; Buzz already showing the first signs of impending food coma!!

“We wanted to create a store that catered to the pets themselves,” Napisa and Jack explained, “in a space that had the room and layout to allow for an overall fun shopping experience. The products we offer at our store are all decided upon by how unique, functional, and healthy they are. Made in the USA, and having a certain level of style are also a huge factor that determines whether or not it gets floor space at Diggidy Dog. Of course we also prefer to support the small independent vendors, as that’s what helps us to stand out from the big corporate stores. Our own personal experience with our past pets, combined with what our current dog, Ellie the 5 lb mini pincher, likes, also help us decide what’s for sale at Diggidy Dog. If Ellie won’t touch it, it likely won’t make the sales floor!”

Plus – the vast selection of treats, toys, apparel, and especially collars and leashes, is really what makes Diggidy Dog stand out. They’ve even begun making our own t-shirts, sweatshirts, and hoodies for dogs!

So next time you are in the area, check it out. Diggidy Dog is an adventure (for your pooch) just by itself! Maybe you are even in Carmel for a wedding? It’s a fabulous location to tie the knot… Look up the feature of Stonepine Estate here on Weddingwoof – just an example of what a dog-friendly AND extravagantly elegant wedding venue looks like in the Carmel area. Get inspired… and get yourselves to Diggidy Dog!