In 1912, James Duval Phelan began construction on his beautiful Italian Mediterranean Revival-style home in the Saratoga countryside of California. Before his death, he declared that Villa Montalvo, which had become a home of arts and culture in Northern California, should become a public park. Thus the Montalvo Arts Center, which now boasts a variety of art, music and educational opportunities, was born. In the striking gardens of Villa Montalvo, with the sun dipping just past the foothills of the Santa Cruz Mountains, this beautiful bride Kaitlyn said “I do” to the love of her life, Victor.
This pair of easy-going high school sweethearts was such a delight to photograph, and their impeccably planned wedding made for one of my all-time career favorites! The stunning greenery-filled florals by Love Life + Bloom, accented perfectly by the luxurious ivory and gold tones that Kaitlyn worked into every aspect of the day, from her shoes and the bridesmaid dresses to the silverware, created a cohesive look from start to finish.
We spent the morning racing back and forth down the hallway between the separate bride and groom “getting ready” rooms to photograph both Kaitlyn and Victor. Watching as Victor read a heartfelt letter from his future wife was a beautifully quiet moment, but the best pre-wedding photographs came from their first look. The light on their faces as they saw each other dressed in their wedding best for the first time could not have been more lovely, and it made for some spectacular bridal portraits and bridal party photographs.
To any couples who are feeling hesitant about conducting a first look before their wedding, I definitely encourage you to consider it! There are so many major pluses that come with having a first look, from capturing your hair and makeup at its freshest to getting those pre-ceremony jitters out of the way. Traditionally, most portraits happen during the time between the ceremony and reception. By including a first look, my couples are able to attend their own cocktail hour and spend more time celebrating with their guests. Despite having seen each other before the ceremony, there were still plenty of tears for both Kaitlyn and Victor (and their family and friends!) when it came time for the bride to walk down the aisle.
A huge and heartfelt thank you to all of the vendors that made this wedding possible. Take a look through some of the photographs of Kaitlyn and Victor’s beautiful Montalvo Arts Center wedding below!
Ceremony and Reception Venue: Montalvo Arts Center | Planning: K Star Planning | Photo Assistance: Kayla F Photography | Film Processing: Photovision | Catering: The Party Helpers | Wedding Gown: Hayley Paige | Floral Design: Love Life + Bloom | Cake Design: La Patisserie | DJ: DJ Dan Utica | Pianist: Sten Bolander | Violinist: Princess Liong | Viola Player: Timothy Oliver | Pastor: Tim Mitchell