An Elegant, DIY Wedding at Dillingham Ranch in Waialua, Hawaii

After Charleston, South Carolina, native Olivia Cortese (24 and a CPA) got engaged to Clayton (25 and a Navy officer), the pair decided to wed on Oahu, Hawaii, near where Clayton is stationed for his job in the Navy. To honor Olivia's hometown—and the place they got engaged—they chose Dillingham Ranch as the venue. “To keep the Charleston theme, I found the perfect location at Dillingham Ranch, located on the north shore of Oahu. The 2,700-acre ranch had a very Southern feel, complete with a long tree-lined drive, a main house and a giant oak tree,” says Olivia, who also incorporated a mix of Southern and Hawaiian design inspirations. “Pineapples fit perfectly into the theme, since they are symbol of hospitality in the South and are grown locally on the island.” After a simple outdoor ceremony framed by rows of palm trees, the couple treated their 65 guests to hula lessons, tropically themed cocktails, slow-roasted pork and fresh mahi-mahi. “Don’t let the small things stress you out, and know when to ask for help,” Olivia says. “Delegate tasks to your family members and friends the week of the wedding.” —Carolyn Meers