ELEGANT CALIFORNIA WEDDING | Urban Sophistication Meets French Romance… with the rockinest shoe shot I’ve seen. + Bambino & The Bachelorette [or, WTF Ashley?]

RIGHT.  So lemme get this straight.  Notably sane Michelle Money who has suddenly developed concern for others tipped off Ashley that Bentley was a douchebag, Ashley tells Chrisharrison (don’t call him Chris, it’s not his name, Chrisharrison is his name) that someone warned her about Bentley being a douchebag (or as everyone on that show says, “being here for the wrong reasons”) and then Ashley falls for him in whatever amount is less than 0.5 seconds, and then Bentley psychopaths out and says douchey things in his interviews but treats her like so many sophomore boys treated me when I was a freshman in college (too emotionally open, too fast, whilst both of us were too drunk), and Ashley gets screwed in 0.8 seconds (0.3 seconds after falling for him, which was 0.5 seconds after meeting him), and then Ashley goes and cries huge, sort of adorable but very deeply pained “where’s Fido?  We took him to a farm” tears, and what… I’m supposed to feel bad for her?  Because she’s crying so hard and this guy clearly treated her HORRIFICALLY, and she’s an innocent and didn’t deserve it?

Obvs., I have little to no pity for this girl.  Her Bachelorette photo should replace the written definition of the saying “you made your bed, now lay in it.”  Ashley orchestrated this little hiccup on her road to love, and has – as of this episode – sabotaged herself.  She says she doesn’t know how she’ll go on, with no time to heal from this heartbreak WTF YOU JUST MET HIM 0.9 SECONDS AGO!!!!!!!!!!!  I have this disconcerting feeling that she’s the kind of girl who sabotages herself unwittingly, always choosing unavailable guys, or guys who don’t know how to treat women or, far worse and requiring gads more therapy, choose to treat women with little respect.  It feels to me that she’s wholly unprepared for a relationship right now, based on the little behavior I’ve witnessed so far this season.

I’m curious, what do you think?  Am I way off here?

CHERRY ON TOP: She gives Vegas Will, aka I’m-a-really-great-guy-ok-fine-I’ll-be-honest-I’m-actually-a-douchebag-no-no-no WAIT-I’m-not-trust-me-this-time the final rose in the rose ceremony.  Which I knew she’d do.  Because it’s pretty predictable that Ashley’s really into guys who like to insult her appearance TO HER FACE for a laugh and are willing to settle for her if two other way more voluptuous options are presently unavailable, also, TO HER FACE.

And now, for fun quotes from the show:

“It’s annoying to hold a girl who’s just crying… and crying… and… crying.”

“I’m gonna make Ashley cry.  I hope my hair looks ok.”

Ahhh hahahahaha.  HiLARIOUS.


First… isn’t that a rockin’ shoe shot up top? :)

Ok, I’m head over heels for this wedding submitted by the fabulous Larissa Cleveland, you guys.  I love the bride’s writeup – which follows – because she details every little bit you’d want to know about how this affair came to fruition.  It was 7+ years in the making, and it’s a lovely shindig that really screams how much the couple loves one another.  And I’m a sucker for teary ceremony shots.  I just am.  Sue me.

One of my favorite things about weddings:

I love how the emotion of the room can go from light and happy… ↓

↑ … to deeply emotional… and then right back to super happy again, PLUS BUBBLES. ↓

Y’know what?  I think we need to see those mini egg sliders again, real big-like:

Ahhh.  That’s better.  No wait that’s worse.  Because now I want one.  CRAP.

Here’s the rundown from our beautiful bride, Martina:

I often joke to Steve that he “took long enough” – we met in college and dated for over 7 years before he popped the question.  But after we planned our wedding and it was the most magical day of our lives, I’m now fond of saying it was well worth the wait.

Our ceremony and reception took place on a beautiful summer evening at The St. Regis San Francisco.  I planned the entire wedding, but couldn’t have done it without my wonderful support team of The St. Regis Director of Catering Barry Peterson and day-of-wedding coordinator Lisa Blake from Bellissima Vita.

The St. Regis provided an elegant, contemporary canvas for our wedding.  I wanted to draw on that ambiance while adding personal, sentimental touches that were unmistakably me and Steve.  We eventually described the combined style as “urban sophistication meets French romance.”  Our color palette was primarily whites and creams, with accents of muted purples and pale greens.

Although we hadn’t planned it this way from the beginning, our theme became “handmade with love” because so many of our wedding details were hand crafted by Steve and me.  We set the tone even before the wedding:  we designed our own wedding logo, built our wedding site steveandmartina.com, photographed the Save-the-Dates at our proposal spot, and spent weeks handmaking elaborate invitations that became one of my favorite mementos from the wedding (but a project that took much longer than expected!).

My favorite moment of the wedding day happened even before the ceremony started and guests arrived:  it was our big “reveal,” or first look.  Our amazing photographer Larissa Cleveland captured these very first moments that Steve and I saw each other in tux and dress, and they were some of our most treasured photos.  We spent the next hour exploring nooks and crannies in the hotel and neighborhood to cuddle, smooch and take more photos.  I highly recommend a private “reveal” to any bride – it’s a romantic way to savor seeing each other for the first time, by yourselves and before the fast pace of the wedding events.

We truly made the ceremony our own.  Our officiant was the mutual friend who had first introduced us over 7 years prior.  Steve and I wrote our own vows;  I don’t think there was a dry eye in the room – certainly not mine!  We incorporated a sand ceremony since Steve had proposed close to a beach: we poured individual vials of white and lavender sand into one gorgeous Vera Wang decanter that we keep on our mantel today.  Our officiant asked all guests to link hands when Steve and I exchanged rings.  Every person was connected in a long chain, making every guest a part of our exchange.  After our first kiss as a married couple, Steve and I walked back down the aisle amidst a wave of bubbles: on each guest’s chair we had placed a mini bubble wand with our wedding logo and the message, “to celebrate after I Do!”

As a guest, I find cocktail hour to be one of the most enjoyable parts of a wedding, so we wanted to make ours memorable and fun.  Mouth-watering hors d’oeuvres were passed – my favorite was the Wagyu beef slider with a sunny-side-up quail egg on top.  Steve and I created signature “his” and “hers” cocktails to complement the full bar: mine was the St. Germain Signature Cocktail (in anticipation of our honeymoon in Paris) and Steve’s was the “Tam Collins” (a play off his surname and Tom Collins).  A glass lantern with our wedding motif served as a cardholder.  We had handmade our escort cards with paper matching the invitations: inside each card was a photograph of Steve and me at our favorite wine lounge, holding a sign with the guest’s table assignment.  We are wine lovers, so we named each table after a type of wine – Riesling, Malbec, Champagne, etc.  The center of activity during the cocktail hour was the Memory Book, an album we had hand-created featuring photos of Steve and I with friends and family throughout the years.  Envelopes were tucked into every page so that guests could fill out colored cards with their favorite memories with the bride and groom, and add them to our Memory Book.  We later read the cards on our honeymoon.

Our dinner reception was a four course, plated, candlelit meal.  Our floral arrangements were by Huckleberry Karen Designs. We worked with Karen to bring visual interest to the room by designing two very different yet complementary centerpieces:  both used orchids, vendela roses, white hydrangea, freesia and decorative crystals; but one presented them in a tall slender vase while the other used them in white Manzanita branches.  Steve and I sat at a sweetheart’s table.  Our guests selected their entrée course from grilled duck breast, filet mignon & jumbo shrimp, sea bass, and vegetarian gnocchi.  Steve and I loved all the entrées from our tasting and couldn’t decide on one each, so The St. Regis was kind enough to provide one of each entrée for our sweetheart table!  Our wedding cake alternated between layers of red velvet and tiramisu (the latter had tiny crunchy bits of coffee toffee in the filling – delicious!).  Our bridesmaids and groomsmen entertained with speeches that brought laughter and tears.  Steve and I provided entertainment too:  we had created a slideshow video that featured every guest that attended the wedding.  We also had so much fun with our first dance: the fabulous Val Cunningham choreographed a ballroom number for us, and we then broke into a hip hop routine that Steve and I had created just 2 weeks before.  It was the perfect way to kick off a night of dancing with our friends and family.  Larissa, in all her wisdom, stole Steve and me away for a few minutes that night so we could have a quiet moment together and take additional photos of just the two of us.

Guests left the evening with favors that were truly handmade with love by our wonderful friend Heather Gokhman from Taste of Happiness (tasteofhappiness.com): a set of His and Hers cupcakes featuring Steve’s and my favorite flavors from Heather’s awesome lineup.

My greatest advice to future brides would be:  remember to capture the memories.  The day you’ve been anticipating and planning for months and years will fly by incredibly quickly!  Don’t spend the day stressing – be in the moment, relax, soak up every moment of it.  Find moments throughout the day to steal away with your husband and share quiet time together – for us it was the first reveal, practicing our wedding dance, sitting at a sweetheart’s table, taking a late evening breather on the terrace with our photographer, eating extra wedding cake in the honeymoon suite while we relived the day aloud.  Our friend gave us a great tip: before the wedding, pick 2-3 specific moments from the wedding day that you will want to remember forever.  Share that list with your fiancé and photographer.  When those moments come, drink in every detail, commit them to memory.  For me, they were the first reveal; walking down the aisle; exchanging our vows; and our first dance.  These memories are the keepsakes from the wedding that I will cherish the most for decades to come.

And now, as requested, I bring you another installment of a day in the life of Bambino McPuppyPants.

aaaaaaand I’m playin and I’m playin and I’m playin with my rope…

and I’m yawnin, but I’m also still playin playin playin with my rope…


If you have a pup, you’ve seen this.

By the way, it’s kind of funny how this show went from Ashley being confident enough to make grown hot men compete for her by forcing them to learn Jabbawockeez dance moves, to this.  Is that mean?  That’s mean.  But it’s also funny.

Anywho, what did you think of today’s wedding?

xoxo!  – Alison

P.S. – I have a little goal to get tomorrow’s post up in the am, instead of the pm, EST time. … Think I can do it?  Keep in mind the wakefullness-inducing garbage trucks that a) run literally all night and b) are seemingly manufactured to be oppressively loud.

But also keep in mind my spirit. ;)

Photography: Larissa Cleveland Photography / Event Planner: Bellissima Vita Weddings / Floral Designer: Huckleberry Karen Designs / Reception Venue: St. Regis Hotel San Francisco / Dress Designer: Melissa Sweet / Lighting: Creative Lighting Design / Shoes: Kate Spade

Label(s): Color, Purple, White, {Real Weddings}

Love all of this...


  1. Naomi on June 9, 2011

    Gorgeous wedding…love the colors! The food looks AMAZING!! Guess what, I do not watch the Bachelorette so I have no idea what is going on but sounds juicy! And how are you love? xo

  2. Stephanie Elizabeth on June 9, 2011

    OMG…I was waiting for this post to come and I even had to turn of my Pandora just so I could focus on your HILARIOUS rant! I LOVE IT! LOVE every word because it’s all so true! And I can’t believe Ashley begged the shows producers to bring him back…and he’s coming back!!! Ugh…like I said on my blog earlier this week, I think all young girls and single women should be encouraged to watch the show as ‘Dating 101′s Things Not To Do.’

    On a brighter note, this wedding is GORG!

  3. Christine on June 9, 2011

    1st thought: Oh.My.Gosh….I LOVED this wedding!!! I’m stealing the shoe/piano shot for my wedding. LOVE it! I love the dress, I love the shoes, I love the venue, I love the cake. What a beautiful wedding. I’m suddenly feeling less secure about my own wedding. I’m not that creative. I’m going for a fall-inspired, rustic/chic wedding theme but I’m still not feeling like it will even touch some of these “amazeballs” weddings you post!

    2nd Thought: I don’t watch the bachelorette but I certainly LOVE your comments on it. So fun, and funny…is Bentley gone? Because I might be tempted to watch next week in order to catch the douche bag comments he makes.

    3rd Thought: Ummmm, Where’s Bambino? I was looking forward to some new pics of him. I missed him while you were away! I missed your blog too….of course!

  4. claire on June 9, 2011

    I’m DIGGING those centerpieces and that shoe shot, for sure!!

  5. Victoria Derrick on June 9, 2011

    First off, Wedding is really lovely! I mean bubbles and those almost to pretty to eat sliders! SCORE!

    I shamelessly (but don’t care cause it is entertaining) watch the Bachelorette and your rant was dead on! The girl clearly has a few lose screws, but then again drama equals high ratings for the show! Shame on Ashley for wanting him to come back! I couldn’t help but think “I wonder what’s going thru her head right now as she re lives (watches) this.” I just hope she put her head in her hands and told herself, what the hell was I thinking!

  6. J (SparklyLove) on June 9, 2011

    You are dead on about Ashley not being ready for a relationship. This is going to end terribly. So how come I can’t stop watching? Ugh I love the car crash that is this season.

    I would say you could get the post up in the am instead of pm, but tomorrow is Friday, which is like international “sleep in, show up late, do as little as possible til you can sneak out” day. So no one will hold it against you if it’s a pm post.

    Is that a mini hamburger with an egg on top? My mouth is watering and I want whatever that is RIGHT NOW!

  7. what a gorgeous wedding! i love every single picture :)

  8. Lena on June 9, 2011

    Holy hell, that wedding is GORGEOUS! I love a classic SF affair, and it’s hard to beat a celebration that stunning!

    And Bambino? I’m not ashamed to admit that I have missed that little bugger. That roll? I’m in puppy heaven!

    Now on to Ashley. I do hope that some of her behavior is dictated or “encouraged” by producers. I have to believe it is, because who is so self-hating? I’m waiting for the interview where Bentley admits he was cast on the show, that the writers asked him to include key things in his interview, because otherwise I just don’t think I can stomach people. Ashley willfully ignored warnings, even if they came from crazy people, who are usually good sources on other crazy people because they’re afraid they’ll encroach on their crazy territory, and she got burned-how can that possibly be a surprise? Crazy already told you he was CRAZY!

    Oh, Ashley.

  9. Mimi Tilton on June 9, 2011

    The little tiny slider top-hat bowl…Mai Wants It!

    This photog…shutthefrontdoor!

    Ashley – I judge wayyyyy to much to post my thoughts. I don’t watch, I listen to recaps and read your blog – take that Nielsens!

    Sometimes I think puppies and cats are actually related. The whole…doo, deee, dooo -::::snap:::: what? I need to be in the kitchen right now!::::: oh, it was nothing…whew… business cracks me up.

    Me, I wonder why you of all people would need validation as to if we’d like our blog earlier>>>heck yeah we do. Makes it’s so much easier to deal with the day. IMPPO.

  10. wow. ashley. bentley. i came back from 3 weeks of traveling to the most amazing magical reality show trash on my DVR ever. it was heaven.

  11. Caroline on June 9, 2011

    Haha I can’t stop watching the Bachlorette, its a total train wreck. Why she kept Jeff for as long as she did is beyond me. And enough with the “dot dot dot” business already!!

  12. Koru Kate on June 9, 2011

    Oh, I love the Bride/piano shot- so cool! & your pup remains beyond adorable :-)

  13. Sarah on June 9, 2011

    Wow…the fashion, the food, the venue…so divine! I love.

    P.S. be careful with the pup and the rope…our English bully ate it while I wasn’t watching and the poor lil guy was sick for 2 days! Bambino makes me miss my bully as a puppy so much!

  14. Gorgeous wedding! Sweet couple, beautiful details, and super yummy looking food.

    And… Ashley. I’m going to have to go with Lena on this one. I’m pretty sure the producers just ran out of juicy ideas, so they hired Bentley to play Douchey McButtface. And told Ashley to act like a complete moron and ball like a baby over a guy she met 5 seconds ago. At least I really hope that is the case (although secretly don’t because what is the point of reality tv if it’s all staged?) Otherwise it is Just. Too. Sad. Ok, that was mean. I swear I’m a nice person but it has just gone too far.

    Love reading your hilarious thoughts on it though!

  15. Elle on June 9, 2011

    I love the last shot of Bambino!
    Thank god he’s back.


  16. Brit @ Landlocked Bride on June 10, 2011

    Love the purple bridesmaids dresses. Sometimes purple can be overwhelming, but they balance so nicely with the rest of the wedding details!

  17. Mae Joyce on June 10, 2011

    The other shoe picture with the rings around the heels is also pretty cool!

    I’m so excited to finally find someone who also can’t tear their eyes away from the TV when the Batchlorette is on! Half way through that episode I wanted to sit Ashley down and be like really? You didn’t see this coming? She’s an idiot and Bentley isn’t even that cute! Craziness!

  18. Theresa on June 10, 2011

    Ok, you gotta be kidding me with those sliders topped w/ tiny eggs. KIDDING ME.

    OMG. They look so good.

  19. Madison on June 12, 2011

    i love the picture with the ring around the shoes, what a gorgeous wedding!

  20. KrisD Mauga on June 12, 2011


  21. The Perfect Palette on June 13, 2011

    Loved your bachelorette rant. Gosh, Ashley sure is something. She seriously must have issues. Poor thing. Ugh! So frustrating to see a girl waste her time. I definitely have seen plenty friends do just that in life. Waste time on guys who suck at life :) Anyways, hopefully she can pull it together. Oh, and didn’t you hate how Bentley said “dot.dot.dot.” as if he and her are not over. PULEASE! xo, Chrissy.

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