Fuchsia and Red Filled This Ballroom Wedding at Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego, California
When Erica and David's wedding was finally able to take place, after being postponed for a year due to the pandemic, the event at Rancho Bernando Inn in San Diego, California, was just as magical as they'd imagined. A moody, jewel-tone color palette with rich shades of fuchsia, burgundy and pink set the tone for the event while luxurious details like an illustrated invitation suite and crescent-shaped ceremony arch further enhanced the romantic aesthetic of the California wedding. "We had a bold, romantic garden-style wedding with a moody color palette, brought in with lush blooms in berry tones (shades of raspberry, strawberry, blackberry, plum and more) and pops of black details," explains Erica. "We wanted a romantic and elegant black-tie event that at the same time felt fresh and playful to reflect our personalities. We wanted to incorporate a lot of color, unique asymmetrical elements, and various textures. And whether we were inside or outside, we wanted that feeling of being in a romantic lush garden underneath the magical night sky."
Beyond planning a visually compelling event, it was also important to Erica and David that they day honor their heritage and families. "We wanted to honor both of our cultures, so before dinner we said a prayer in Armenian (led by the Armenian priest who held our separate religious ceremony for just immediate family)," shares Erica. Another way the couple did this was by changing into traditional Vietnamese ao dai outfits later in the evening, in time for the Vietnamese lion dancer performance that took place during the reception. "We surprised our guests with a 'lion dance' which is a tradition that many Vietnamese weddings start off their receptions with. However, rather than it being our grand entrance to the reception, we snuck away after the cake cutting to change into traditional Vietnamese wedding attire for a surprise performance with 4 'lions' and drum ensemble.
"The florals were key to achieving our bold, romantic garden vibe," notes Erica. "We had an abundance of florals and greenery for that lush garden feel, and the loose unstructured floral design made everything feel fresh and playful. It was important that the florals were elegant with an organic and textural look, rather than being tight and manicured." To start the day, Erica and David held an outdoor wedding ceremony "with trees creating an almost forest-like backdrop. We stood in front of a unique and bold arch, which was created in the shape of a crescent moon (some thought it looked like a wave, or even a 'C' for our last name). We then wanted to bring a bold, romantic garden vibe inside the ballroom. We used beautiful berry colors with floral statement pieces, and paired against striking black details and various textures," recalls Erica.
In terms of other decor moments, Erica explained that the couple also "had an incredible hanging floral installation over the dance floor- with large and bold floral 'clouds' and garlands dripping down above our heads. Market lights and greenery were also streamed across the ballroom ceiling while tables were littered with candles. The abundance of candles and market lights above mirrored the night sky. For visual variety, we had a mix of round and long tables, with both high and low floral arrangements. We brought in more color with colored wine goblets, black details with matte and gold flatware, and gold and black chairs, and texture with velvet napkins. We wanted people to have different areas to spend time when not eating or dancing, so we put daybeds alongside the dance floor and created a lounge outside under a pergola which had greenery growing up along its sides and strands of hundreds of icicle-like lights dripping down overhead like stars."
Beyond the stunning visuals of the wedding day, the day's epic entertainment was another big highlight. Notably, the couple's 12-piece band was one of Erica's favorite parts of the wedding day. "They really set the tone for the reception by starting off with a fun and energetic dance set right after the grand entrance and before we sat down for our first course. It was the most epic dance party to start our reception! The dancing continued between courses and we loved how everything flowed seamlessly with that, from eating to speeches to more dancing. We loved how the dance floor was filled almost the entire night, from the band all the way through to the late-night DJ. The band even brought out light-up tambourines, feather boas and other fun props for the guests. " From epic flowers to A-plus entertainment, each and every element of Erica and David's ballroom wedding at Rancho Bernardo Inn in San Diego, California, was absolutely memorable.