Meet Peyton and Collin,
Reading their love story that Peyton so gracefully shared with us brought me to tears. Their wedding was a magical day! They were gifted with the most amazing sunset on their beautiful day and everything from morning to evening felt like a collection of magical moments! I know you will fall in love with these two!! Enjoy!
The Story of 497
Collin and I first started dating about eight months after meeting, after both being in different relationships. We were often accused of “flirting” in physics class, though if you ask me, I have no idea what these people are talking about ;). Don’t get me wrong, I thought “Wow, He’s Cute!” And wanted to be friends with Collin the moment I met him, but it was never the right time. About April, I was just ending a relationship, still thinking Collin was dating his then girlfriend. Then I found out he wasn’t…
Because we were both recently out of relationships, we had no Prom Dates. So after Collin asked me to Prom, we decided we should probably go out to get to know each other outside of class first. I knew it was a good sign when he asked me to go to Antico Pizza in Midtown. We ordered the lasagna pizza with Ricotta, Meatballs, and Romano and scarfed the whole thing down together before heading out to walk around the area.
Fast forward a few months later. I was going to Switzerland and France with my family for two weeks and Collin was heading to Alaska to fish for his graduation trip with his Uncle. The trip put us on a 10 hour time difference and made it extremely difficult to talk! When we finally returned, Collin had a gift. He gave me the most beautiful white gold whale tale necklace. However, he told me he thought about getting something engraved with the number 497 instead. I was confused and had no idea what 497 represented. He explained that was the point and that if he had given it to me, I would have had to try to figure out what the number meant. Well- since that wasn’t the gift, I convinced him to tell me what it really was. Evidently, Collin had kept our receipt number from our first date at Antico’s. You order at the front and are given a receipt with an order number before heading to the back kitchen where loud Italian music plays and pizzas are whipped out in about 5 minutes. Someone yells your order number and you frantically wave your hands until they see you ( it’s a very busy place) so you can devour your delicious pizza. Anyways, 497 was our number. Throughout the years, we’ve gone to Antico’s for our anniversaries, date nights, and other celebrations… and we always, always get the lasagna pizza.
So, that year at Christmas, I had a leather bracelet with a metal plate customized with ‘497’ for Collin. He still has it and wears it occasionally (it’s in rough shape after 6 years) but the meaning has never gone away. Whenever he wears it, people ask what the number means. When we went to pick out our wedding rings, we had 497 engraved in the inside of both next to our wedding date. So now, even without the bracelet, the memory of the start of our relationship is always with us, right next to the memory of the start of our marriage.
Our day was largely inspired by Tuscany. My Junior year of college, I studied abroad in Florence for a semester. Collin and I were apart for the entire trip except for the week he came to visit (which was amazing). I got to show him all over my new foreign home and we took a trip with my newfound travel buddies (who were my bridesmaids) to the little town of Cinque Terre for a weekend. The hardest part of traveling to all these incredible places was that I wanted Collin to be there to experience everything I was seeing, feeling etc. The aesthetics of the day were modeled after the Tuscan countryside- think a wedding at a tuscan villa.
There’s something special about how meals are cherished in the Italian culture. During my time in Italy, we spent nearly 2 hours at dinner (whether out or at home) every night. Meals are an experience, not just a time to eat. You sit, chat, laugh, and drink wine for hours. Additionally, I grew up with parents in the restaurant business so meals have always been a big part of my life. One of the non-negotiables for our day was that we would sit down and enjoy our entire wedding meal with our Guests. At so many weddings it is typical for the Bride and Groom to leave in the middle of dinner to do portraits, but we really emphasized spending an hour enjoying our wedding dinner with our nearest and dearest (and we actually got to enjoy the food!) Our caterer, MIHO Catering Co. made this vision come to life! We had the most incredible family-style meal complete with Z’aatar Whole Roasted Chicken, Farro and Arugula Salad, Swiss Chard & Goat Cheese Ravioli, Roasted Cauliflower and Charred Baby Carrots! Instead of leaving to do portraits in the middle of dinner, Aline agreed to finish all our family and individual sunset photos before dinner so the night wouldn’t be interrupted!
My mom and I went to pick out a dress in November, about 11 months before the wedding. Of course, like many other girls, I had an entire Pinterest board full of wedding ideas, dresses etc. that I loved. We started at BHLDN where I found a few that I liked but nothing I absolutely LOVED. At this point, we had chosen the venue, so I was trying to make sure the dress fit the “vibe” of the venue. It’s kind of intimidating to put on this gorgeous ballgown and think “Oh wow, I’m going to put this on and wear it all night in front of a ton of my friends, family, and fiancé” . With a few options as backups, I then made appointments at two more bridal shops thinking I would definitely find one I loved at the second shop as it had a more bohemian, simple inventory. Our second appointment was not looking good but at the last minute I decided to throw on two skirts and a top to just “try”. At first glance on the rack I thought they were really pretty but they didn’t fall into my idea of what I “thought I would wear/want”. When I tried my skirt on my subconscious knew it was perfect, but I still had this idea in my head that it was “too much” or that it wouldn’t look good with a flower crown etc. etc. However, when I walked out to the front of the store where there was natural light and a large, floor to ceiling mirror, I couldn’t take it off. I could win an award for the worst decision maker on earth, so when I said “Ok, let’s get it,” it was a big surprise! I’m an emotional person but was not expecting to get teary eyed when I made the decision! We took the skirt home off-the-rack and had the body-suit handmade to my measurements (or so we thought). Fortunately, we found an amazing dress seamstress (Hanan’s Bridals) who worked on my top for nearly 6 months after we received it. The material was very stretchy and was definitely not made to my specific measurements as we expected so it took a lot to get it where we wanted it. However, every week, Hanan welcomed us in and worked hard to make it perfect for the day! While I would have loved to wear my mom’s wedding dress (or a piece of it), unfortunately the dog peed on it many years ago haha. However, our flower girl (Collin’s little sister), Reagan, wore my flower girl dress from when I was 5. It was in great condition in storage and Hanan altered it to fit her as she is a few years older than I was when I wore the dress. I about cried when she tried it on for the first time.
As for my hair, I had a very bad experience at my Junior Prom (with Collin- woo!) where I wore my hair up. It did not look like or feel like me at all. Wearing my hair down feels the most natural and comfortable to me, so that’s what I did. When Collin and I came out to California for our venue walk-through, tasting, etc. about two months before the wedding, I had my hair and makeup trial with Beauty Bespoken and Hair by Kayti. I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do with my hair, just that I wanted it down, partially pulled back, and fitting for an olive flower crown, Kayti showed me some images of some simple twists she had done before and I loved it!… So we went with that! As for makeup, I got really lucky finding Sarah from Beauty Bespoken. I searched for a makeup artists who specialized in natural looks, where I still felt like myself and Sarah delivered!
Collin proposed on my birthday in front of my close family and friends. It was amazing to have everyone there in the moment, however, at first I was so overwhelmed I went straight in for the hug before even looking at the ring. While hugging, I heard my mom say “what about the ring?”. I looked down to find the most beautiful rose gold, halo ring. It became that much more special when I found out the center stone was my mom’s old diamond ring… which I didn’t think she even had anymore.
The First Look
Peyton: Seeing each other for the first time was very emotional. When I was getting ready, I was nervous because all I wanted to do was see Collin and give him a hug. We were both crying before he even turned around, if that tells you anything. But to be in that moment was so so special, like “wow, this is it.” We wrote each other letters that we planned on exchanging and reading separately but decided to go ahead and read them to each other. Cue the tears.
Collin: I was hesitant of the first look because of two things, my best friends wedding and all the videos of first looks Peyton had shown me before our wedding. At my best friends wedding, they had their first look and then we all sat around for an hour or so and they were able to see one another for the whole time. I was worried after seeing this, it would make the actual ceremony less special. Also, most of the videos we watched the men did not cry. I thought that was lame. Seeing Peyton for the first time was really emotional. I cried, like a real man. It was probably my favorite moment of the day because of how intimate that time with her was. I was really happy that it did not feel like our pictures were even being taken at the time too. I actually thought there was not going to be that many pictures of the moment. Aline and Mihai seemingly disappeared.
How would you describe your wedding day?
Euphoric and Magical. I know this sounds a bit like a cliche, but I can’t really explain how incredible it is to have your closest family and friends together to celebrate you and the person you love most. It was especially meaningful since everyone had flown all the way to California for the occasion. We wanted the wedding to be a bit more intimate (ended up with 64 people) which, I believe, made it even better since we knew everyone there. We were able to spend time with extended family the few days before the wedding and welcome all 64 at the rehearsal dinner the night before.
In the weeks leading up to the wedding, I was very stressed - honestly until we got to the cottage the day-of. Planning a destination wedding was not easy and the last few weeks were a whirlwind of emotions and last-minute details. The morning in the cottage with my mom and the girls was sweet but I was still a little bit nervous. The morning didn’t feel real. I just kept thinking “Is this really happening?” “How is the day here?” . However, once we did our first look, all of that emotion- the stress, nervousness, etc. all melted away.
Everyone tells you the day flies by in an instant. They are right...it really does. I tried to be intentional about taking in the little moments and really stopping to look around and see what was happening. But truly, every single instant was remarkable. Our first look, walking down the aisle, the ceremony, sunset photos, the grand entrance, the first dance, sitting down for AN HOUR and sharing an entire meal with everyone there, the FOOD, the toasts, the dance competitions, the crazy dancing, the cake cutting, the ice cream sandwiches, and of course, the grand exit- everything. When we first walked out to the reception area during our grand entrance, I was in literal awe. Indescribable. I can’t even tell you how hard I laughed, happy cried, or smiled until my cheeks hurt that day.
The day was beautiful. It was joy. It was laughter. But most of all, it made me so grateful. I already feel like I’m back in the moment when I listen to a song we picked for one of the “big moments”. I'm thankful for that.
Your favorite moment from the wedding
Peyton: This one is also hard… Can it be a 10 way tie? If I had to choose just one moment to watch back over and over it would be our first look, followed closely by our grand exit. Both of these moments are filled with emotion, one with just Collin and I in private, and one with everyone we celebrated with. I could watch our first look without any sound and still see what I was feeling in that moment. And our exit… that was the end of the most beautiful day. Everyone you’ve just celebrated with is there, cheering you on for the send-off, and you can really feel the joy.
Collin: Can we pick the whole day? It flew by so fast. I would like to re-watch the ceremony because there are a lot of things racing through your mind like, "Am I standing up straight?", "Am I looking at Peyton enough?", "Did I pay attention to what the pastor said?". "Does my voice sound weird in this mic?". This is not to say the moment wasn't very special to me, because it was! I would just like to see it again. And, I would love to see the reception again. There were so many people there from different corners of our lives and it was very fun to see them all having a good time with one another. The day was a special one. I think we were very fortunate, even with crazy families coming together, that I could probably freeze any point of the day and enjoy it. Oh, and My uncle hugged me before the ceremony...and he doesn't hug people, ever!
Wedding Venue : Milagro Winery, 18750 Littlepage Road, Ramona, CA 92065 USA
Photographer: Aline Marin Photography
Wedding Officiant: Billy Phipps
Wedding Day Coordinator : Through Milagro- Megan Creed & Melissa Herring
Stationary Print Company: Paper: Silk & Willow, https://www.silkandwillow.com, @silkandwillow, https://www.facebook.com/silk.willow
Florist: Bluebell Florals, http://www.bluebellflorals.com, @bluebellflorals, https://www.facebook.com/bluebellflorals
Music - Band/DJ: DJ Tony Kings, http://www.djtonykings.com, @djtonykings, https://www.facebook.com/DJTONYKINGS
Videographer : Darcy Bly, https://darcybly.com, @darcybly, https://www.facebook.com/darcyblyvideo/
Wedding Dress: Fabulous Frocks, http://fabulousfrocksbridal.com, @fabulousfrocksofatlanta
Bridal Shoes: Madewell, www.madewell.com, @madewell
Hairstylist: Kayti Schmitz, https://www.hairbykayti.com, @hairbykayti, https://www.facebook.com/hairbykayti
Makeup Artist: Beauty Bespoken, https://www.beautybespoken.com, @beautybespoken, https://www.facebook.com/beautybespokensd/
Wedding Suit or Other Outfit: Bonobos, https://bonobos.com, @bonobos
Caterer: MIHO Catering, https://www.mihocateringco.com, @mihocateringco, https://www.facebook.com/amihoexperience/
Cake: MIHO , see above
Bridal Party Outfits: Revelry, https://shoprevelry.com, @shoprevelry, https://www.facebook.com/shoprevelry/
Wedding Bands: Engagement Ring: Brown and Company Jewelers, http://www.brownjewelers.com ; Wedding Bands: Shane Co.