A Dating App Inspired the Menu at This Wedding at Villa del Sol d'Oro in Sierra Madre, California
Seres and Geoffrey wanted a wedding that was "lush and whimsical. In other words, beautiful but not in a too serious kind of way, I wanted it to be a little wild and natural. It was late September in Southern California, not quite fall, which is my favorite season, so I wanted the color palette to reflect that—pinks, oranges, yellows, warm pastels and hints of red. The color scheme pulled through in the table settings, the florals and my cake. I didn't incorporate any cultural or religious traditions, with the exception of my second dress—a modern take on a traditional Chinese 'qipao'—was a nod to my Chinese ethnicity," shares Seres.
For the couple's outdoor wedding ceremony, it was hard to believe that the vow exchange was taking place in California and not Europe. "The venue looks like it was plucked straight from Tuscany, so it hardly needed decorations. The ceremony overlooked a long rectangular fountain, flanked on the side by a giant old tree with a hanging chandelier, that was definitely whimsical!" says Seres. "Then for the reception, we had a blend of round and long tables, and dined al fresco in the courtyard, under what my husband likes to call 'vintage-y lights' (bulb lights). It was a gorgeous setting, it didn't feel stuffy at all and felt right for a California wedding. I think if you choose a venue that speaks for itself, you don't need to overthink decorations and just lean into the setting, in this case, less really was more."
To add personalization to their wedding, and nod to the way they met, Seres and Geoffrey included a "Coffee Meets Bagel" bar as part of their wedding menu. Coffee and bagel treats were a tasty addition to the menu while celebrating the dating app that connected the couple initially. "My husband and I met on Coffee Meets Bagel, a dating app, so we had a really cute 'coffee and bagel' bar set up as guests were arriving. The 'bagel' bites were actually little donuts created to look like mini bagels. For our favors, we had macarons that were gold stamped with 'double happiness' which is a traditional Chinese character used during weddings. Both little touches came out beautifully, though I realize now that I didn't even get to enjoy them the day of the wedding because it was so busy. I wish I had taken a moment to really look at them," recalls Seres of the sweet treats.
Looking back on the wedding, the couple notes that the floral arrangements, their vows and their first dance were all memorable highlights from the day. "The florals were probably my favorite part of the wedding, my florist absolutely got me. My arch was a work of art and had that wild, lush look I wanted. She also used a ton of greenery which somehow made the flowers look even more gorgeous—she even incorporated maple leaves, for that subtle fall look. Most of my flowers were a shade of pastel pink and orange, warm but soft, and carried through to the bridal bouquets, the centerpieces, the bride and groom table, on my cake—you could say the florals were my wedding decor," says Seres of the day's lush floral arrangements. As for the couple's vow exchange, "we'd written our own vows and I was SUPER proud of mine and super excited to read it to him. I wasn't sure how good his was going to be and was determined to go first. I'd asked my officiant to make sure I went first and he actually forgot so when he called my husband first I was like, actually, I'm gonna go. I loved both of our vows and I can't imagine having not written our own. We also really looked forward to our dance, in a we-can't-relax-til-we-get-this-over-with kind of way. We're convinced we totally missed moves, but miraculously we ended exactly on the right note, we still don't know how we managed!"