It’s my first Saturday this month not photographing a wedding, so I’m taking the opportunity to share one of my favorites from the summer.

Ross & Ashley’s wedding was unique for so many reasons. First, the venue. The historic Marston House, a 1905 Arts & Crafts-style mansion designed and built by the internationally renowned architects William Sterling Hebbard and Irving Gill, provided the prime setting for a modern wedding with a timeless elegance. One of the docents mentioned that I was only the fourth photographer to have ever taken a bride and groom’s photos inside the museum. *Chills.*

But what I appreciated even more about this day was Ross & Ashley’s informal approach to its planning — all of which was done in just 7 weeks. Originally, they wanted to elope since neither of them wanted so much attention, not to mention all the money that could be rather spent on a home purchase. The plan changed, but they kept it intimate, casual and on budget. Ashley said that from that point forward, they were “involved in every component of the wedding, down to cutting the invitations by hand and refinishing vintage furniture for the dessert reception. Anything we weren’t doing by hand, was done by friends and family. We had relatives mailing in lace, friends painting signage, parents cooking jam, siblings mixing sangria, grandparents baking our favorite desserts, and countless tasks that united us with friends and family.” One of their closest friends then married them in the gardens of the beautiful Marston House with a group of 40 guests.

“Our relationship, engagement, and ceremony all keep in line with our ideals of equality where we mutually planned everything together.”

When it came to photos, I worked with Ashley to make sure we had plenty of time to take advantage of capturing portraits of her and Ross inside the museum and around its grounds. She was very specific about the look and feel she wanted for the images. “We wanted to look at our photos with the same nostalgia of looking at our great-grandparents’ wedding photos. [You] did a fantastic job of capturing the day as it happened without gimmicks, just full of love and charm.”

As you can see by the incredible list of vendors below, the day was exactly that: a culmination of so much love between two people and the friends and family who surround them.

Dessert venue: Bride and Groom’s home
Dress: By Catherine Deane from BHLDN
Cover-up: Bride’s Great Great-Grandmother’s lace, hand-dyed to match the dress
Earrings: Jenny Packham
Suit: Banana Republic
Bouquet and boutonnière: Mission Hills Florist
Ceremony music: The Donnis Trio
Planners: Bride and Groom
Day-of Coordinators: Friends Colleen Ennis and Kara Leen
Save The Date postcards: Friends Lissa Corona, Kara Leen, and Bride
Program design, calligraphy, and paintings: Kara Leen
Signage: Kara Leen
Favors: Homemade jam by Bride’s Mother
Desserts: Homemade by friends and family
Hair and makeup: Lissa Corona and Colleen Ennis
Officiant: Lissa Corona

Smashing Wedding: Ross + Ashley // Marston House


The past 365 days, back to living in San Diego. Everything is working out just fine.


One-year Returniversary