Getting Ready with the Studio Collective - My Wedding, Part 2

It's time for another behind the scenes peek at my wedding! So, for background on where our wedding was, my husband and I got married in the place where we both grew up in Northern California. He and I went to the same high school and ended up dating after college! So it was so special for both of us to get to come back to our home towns to get married, and so fun to see so many friends from across the U.S. in the place that shaped us into the people we are now!

We got married in Penn Valley, CA. I grew up in Nevada City and Max grew up in Grass Valley which are small little towns right next to each other. Nevada County is a tiny shotgun shaped county in California that is pointed at the state of Nevada (for reals, check out a map of it's shape) hidden away in the Sierra Nevada Foothills of California. (Nevada, the state, stole the name Nevada from our little town during the Gold Rush era. Hence the ridiculous shape of our county, haha. Anyway, back tot he story: Max and I were engaged for 8 months before we got married, which, to me seemed like a good chunk of time, being that we had dated for 5 years before getting engaged. But it turns out, planning a wedding is basically like planning a business. And the search for finding a cool place to get ready and finding a company that offered unique decor rentals for the wedding day was SO difficult! It was getting down to the wire, 2 months away from our wedding day, that I finally found the Studio Collective.

Through the Studio Collective, we were able to rent a space to get ready at the Roots Reclaimed studio and warehouse. They have an awesome package for $350 where they will decorate the space for you however you want, they provide a big mimosa bar with all sorts of pastries and snacks, free wifi, and a beautiful atmosphere in a central location in Grass Valley, CA. It's great for getting ready for your Northern California wedding or photoshoot. I decided that I would rather invest in an awesome place to get ready that we didn't have to set up or maintain rather than hiring a hair and make up stylist along with some other budget items I decided we just could be ok without for the wedding. Budgeting was very important to us, so I'll explain more about that as I continue my wedding series!

I couldn't have been MORE pleased with our experience working with the Studio Collective and using the getting ready space. Our photographer, and my friend, Marissa Maharaj had so much fun exploring all of the props in the Roots Reclaimed warehouse next to the Studio Collective/Roots Reclaimed studio. They even had a cute cat roaming around the warehouse, which my bridesmaids loved being that most of them are serious cat ladies haha.

Two of my very best friends from college came and got ready with me and my bridesmaids the morning of the wedding. And one of my very best friends from my teen years came and got ready too, her daughter, my god daughter, was our flower girl! I have had 4 very distinct periods of my life, my childhood in rural England, junior high and high school years in small town Northern California, college years in a close community in Seattle, and post college career life in greater Seattle and online. I decided to just have my 2 sisters and my 3 closest friends in Seattle as my bridesmaids. 

There is SO much pressure on brides to choose who will be their bridesmaids. There is the "oh, I owe this person because I was in their wedding" or "this person was my best friend growing up" "this person lives closest to me currently" "that person I've known longer than this person, so ranking blablabla." I 100% dislike the peer pressure aspects of weddings that are placed on women. From the pressure of society saying you NEED to be your most beautiful physical version of you on your wedding day, (FALSE) you need to work out obsessively and starve yourself before your wedding (SO FALSE) to your wedding HAS to look like it cost x amount (FALSE), and you have to make everyone happy on your wedding day (That is legitimately impossible.) I am a people pleaser, so of course I tried my best to make everyone happy during our wedding and leading up to it. But guess what, I couldn't do it. And when choosing who was going to be a part of wedding planning, decorating, a part of the wedding party, all of that stuff, I knew I just couldn't please everyone. So I tried to just go at it all with just practicality in mind and a sincerity of heart in communicating to everyone I love WHY I love them, and why they are special to me whether they are given a specific wedding day role or not.
My whole life, I expected to just have my 2 sisters as my bridesmaids. Hi, I'm practical, haha. But Max wanted 4-5 groomsmen. We could have just had an uneven amount of groomsmen and bridesmaids but the perfectionism in both of us couldn't do it. So I just decided to have my 3 closest friends who live near me be my 3 additional bridesmaids. It worked best for us, and I so appreciated having them all by my side. 

When it came to getting all dolled up, it was really important to me that all of my bridesmaids got to express their own unique looks within our wedding. Individuality is the grounding force between Max and I, and sharing the importance of respecting, admiring, and adoring one another and finding ease and comfort between us as individuals was the theme we really wanted to express through our wedding day. The importance of self expression, variety, and individuality played out in so many ways throughout our wedding, and the most obvious way was through the variety of how my bridesmaids styled themselves for our wedding.

I'll share more about the bridesmaid dresses in a separate post but for now I'll just say that I was way more obsessed with the look of all of my bridesmaids dresses together than concerned with how my wedding dress looked, haha! I just thought my friends looked so beautiful and unique in their own gorgeous looks.

My bridesmaids and I all did our own make up and hair for the wedding, with some help from my sister's bestie Emma and all of us helping one another. I don't usually wear foundation so Emma helped me with that, and then I did the rest of my own make up. A tip for if you are doing your own make up on your wedding day, just think of your wedding day make up like any other day, ladies. I wore the same basic make up that I wear most days just with added foundation, a little more vibrancy, and went a little heavier with my make up. One of my childhood best friend's sisters gave me eyelash extensions. Though I don't think I'll ever wear eyelash extensions again just because of the up keep, they were awesome to have on my wedding day. I didn't have to worry about fake eye lashes coming unglued or mascara running down my face. Those eyelashes were heavy duty! Haha. I honestly felt a little bit like Lamb Chops. Remember that old show?

These beautiful handmade crowns are by Acute Designs. My sisters both wore one of these crowns in the wedding to distingush themselves from all my other lovely bridesmaids. And after discovering Acute Designs on Etsy, I decided to stock them in my shop too!

Eyelashes like WOAH. I don't wear very much make up so every time I saw myself in the mirror with those mega lashes, I kinda chuckled. 

My youngest sister has some serious nails for the wedding. I was down with my bridesmaids doing their nails however they wanted. Do yo thang girls. I wore just pale pink nail polish that I painted on the morning of.

Thank you so much to the Studio Collective for giving us such a beautiful space for getting ready! We had so much fun and I can't tell you how relaxed I felt the morning of the wedding. I know that having a beautiful, organized and creative space to get ready in really helped me feel at peace on our wedding day.

Ps, the Studio Collective is coming to LA soon too! They do a lot more beyond just event styling and offering studio space for brides. They offer event planning, rentals, resources for wedding accessories, photographers, make up and hair stylists, catering, cinematography and lots more. They've got my giant stamp of approval, as someone who is SUPER picky about styling. And all of their resources are totally my vibe. :)

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