Outdoor Bohemian Wedding

This creative bride with an eye for design recruited family and friends to execute a stunning bohemian wedding in Santa Barbara, California. This wedding is a DIY bride’s dream! From the homemade ceremony backdrop and decor elements to the handcrafted wooden bars and tables, almost every element for the bride & groom’s big day was put together with a loving heart behind it (yes, they even made those GORG bouquets!). They truly captured a bohemian essence with bridesmaids adorned with flower crowns and dressed in a flowy, cream variety (we’re loving this trend!) and a bull’s skull mounted at the altar. And can we just pause and acknowledge the bride’s super cute fringe booties!! Paired with her long sleeved, layered gown and pretty jeweled headband, she’s a true bohemian beauty! Set with a beautiful hilltop backdrop and topped off with glowing Chinese lanterns, this bohemian wedding is one to remember!

From the bride:

We wanted a laid-back, backyard wedding that expressed our personal style/taste and created a casual and intimate environment to celebrate with friends. I have been into DIY lately, so I wanted to have a personal, hand-made feel to our wedding. I knew I wanted some vintage elements, so we started with choosing our wedding colors (gold and white) and built from there.

I knew I wanted a vintage gown and was thrilled with the one I found at a local shop. I’ve always loved Indian headdresses, so i decided to trade out the traditional veil in lieu of a headdress that I embellished to create the look I wanted. The bridesmaids each selected a neutral-colored dress that reflected their personal style. We bought all the flowers from the original Los Angeles Flower Market and spent the wedding weekend arranging them with our families and bridal party. Instead of a guest book, guests wrote notes at their tables that we will open each year. On our 1st anniversary we will open the notes from table 1, and so on.

For the ceremony, we used eclectic rugs for the aisle runner. The bull skull that I bought for Jake as a wedding gift fit perfectly for a ceremony adornment.

For the reception decor, we began by spraying mason jars gold and white, and then incorporated Boho and Aztec/Indian styles for an eclectic feel. We scoured thrift stores and antique shops for unique found objects and decor that all seemed to fit in their own way. Jake and the boys in our families designed and installed the lighting, and built the bars from re-purposed pallets. Our fathers built benches for guests to sit on; our families pitched in and did all the cooking for the cocktail hour.

Jake drove me into our reception on a vintage blue bike. We had our first dance, followed by a laid-back Mexican dinner (our favorite!) that was catered by a local restaurant. We ate on a handmade sweetheart table created from a wooden pallet that is now the kitchen table at our home together. The dessert table was put together by my mother in-law, with various sweets to blend with the vintage and gold/white theme. At the end of the night, we released Chinese Lanterns and sent all of our guests home with one as a favor.

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Venue: Private Residence, Santa Barbara, CA
Photographer: Mary Rosenbaum Photographs
Bride’s vintage gown: Paris 1900
Indian Headdress: ufi Mart
Bride’s Jewelry/Bangles/etc: my mother in laws friend made one of my bracelets, and the rest I got from the great park flea market
Bride’s Boots: Francesca’s
Bride’s Reception Headband: something borrowed (from friend), similar here
Tuxedos: Groom’s suit was from Nordstrom (Top Man)
Groomsmen Bowties: from American Apparel
Ceremony Arch: Groom and his dad make made it with reclaimed wood
Bull Skull: From antique barn in San Juan Capistrano, CA
Hanging Ribbon Backdrop: DIY
Bar Chalkboard Signs: DIY (thrifting and painting frames with gold and chalkboard paint)
Aisle Runner Rugs: Home Goods
Chair and Dance Floor Rentals: 204 Events
Dinner Catering: Los Aguavas
Chinese Lanterns: Just Artifacts
Flowers: Los Angeles Flower Mart
Gold/White Washi Tape: Etsy
Bike: vintage
Sweetheart Table: DIY (an old work bench table that we found and added pieces of reclaimed wood to make it a full table, which we now have in our home for our dinner table)
String Lights: DIY – Carnival lights from Target and 4×4’s from Home Depot
Dessert Table Props: I found drawers at the long beach flea market, and my father in-law made the block that held the cake.
Dessert Table Foods: Groom’s mother, aunts and mother’s friends, all helped make homemade cupcakes
Corn Hole game: DIY

22 responses to “Outdoor Bohemian Wedding

  1. I love the gold and white, and the Boho and Aztec/Indian styles incorporated in this wedding!

  2. Wow this sounds like a lot of work! For doing it all on their own it looks like it turned out perfectly, I could have never pulled it off!

  3. Stop it right now…this is the coolest wedding ever! I can’t believe the bride did it herself!!

  4. Literally obsessed with EVERYTHING about this wedding! She is stunning! Can’t believe they DIY’d everything too!

  5. That he a dress usage is offensive. Look into the true meaning of something sacred before you abuse someone else’s heritage. How tacky.

  6. couldn’t agree more. They finally took the photo off their instagram, which I am grateful for, but that’s just not enough.

    As a friend said on FB: “I
    don’t know what is more appalling about these kinds of weddings — the
    fact that they have all become fluffy, Pinterest-smeared vehicles for
    getting yourself on a blog (rather than the actual point of a wedding,
    which is — dare I say — to celebrate a couple getting married and
    making a serious commitment)…..

    the grotesque, naive, clumsy cultural appropriation happening here. I
    mean, she bought the headdress from a COSTUME website, FFS. Happy
    Halloween/your racist wedding day!!!

    attractive people took everything that I hate about trendy, showy
    weddings (and people) and put it all into one insensitive, dumb package
    that they will no doubt regret one day.

    I suspect that day will come quickly — when they face the backlash of the internet.

    And the internet rarely forgives….and never forgets.”

    If you need some reading material as to WHY this is offensive:


  7. Her vaguely being part Native American doesn’t make it excusable…she is still misrepresenting the sacredness of what the headdress means…The headdress is an honor that you have to EARN–and you don’t earn it by simply having some Native American blood. Educate yourself.

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