Real Wedding

Real Wedding: Christopher & Rich

Rich & Christopher

Bright Bird Photography

November 2, 2008

There is perhaps no greater challenge than to defy the boundaries of time to create a celebration that is both timeless and nostalgic and preserves a measure of cool on hot day in the desert. But this is exactly what Chris and Rich did — and did beautifully — at their ceremony in the fall of 2008*, just a few days before Prop 8 passed halting gay marriages in California. We are fortunate that Chris and Rich (with a little help from their photographer — Alexa Maxine of Bright Bird Photography) took the time to share a few photographs along with their take on the most special aspects of their wedding day.

What is your most favorite photo from the wedding? Why is this your favorite? 

Bright Bird PhotographyThis is a real tough question! There are so many great moments caught. I'm not usually a fan of the "rings" shot, but the ring boxes sitting on the "LOVE" chair is so great. I also love a super formal portrait, so the shot of us in the Parker Living Room is another favorite. It really brings forth the whole vibe we were going for, which was a bit of a throwback to a more sophisticated time. Lastly, the documentary style, caught moments are really priceless, for example where Rich is attaching my boutonniere.

Bright Bird Photography


Bright Bird PhotographyYou clearly put a lot of thought into the symbols used on your wedding day (the cake top, the shoes, being at the Parker, etc.). Can you tell us about the most meaningful symbols incorporated into the ceremony and/or reception?

As I mentioned above, we really wanted to create a feeling of nostalgia. The Parker was such an amazing venue. It was designed by our favorite designer, Jonathan Adler, and his stamp is all over the place! The moment we walked in, we knew this was the place. It had such a cool vibe to it – very 1970's Morroccan with a psychedelic twist. The grounds really took our breath away too…as did the heat, but without that heat, the aroma of the landscaping wouldn't have been so fragrant. It also screamed California to us. We wanted to make California a big part of the wedding in a way.Bright Bird Photography Our save the date cards and website featured California Poppies and out of towner baskets included California Almonds and wine. We are very big on keeping local and sustainable. We actually went so far as to offset any carbon footprint the wedding created.

The birds came about from a drawing that Chris had created. He was playing with the idea of using simple shapes to create animals as inspired by Charlie Harper, an illustrator in the 50's, 60's and 70s. The cake topper was hand made by Chris. We really wanted something very unique to our wedding day. We both enjoy being fashionable, and if you can't go all out on your wedding day, then when can you!?

Bright Bird Photography

What was your most favorite/special response a wedding guest shared with you about being a part of your Big Day?

We had such a great response to the wedding, and the best comments we got were how "us" our wedding was. We felt it was really important that the day represented who we were.

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Would you say that your life has changed in any way since having your ceremony?

Yes. Absolutely.

Not the bond between us, that's the same as before, but being able to say we were legally married, and being able to introduce each other as our husband rather than boyfriend-of-ten-years is important to us.

Bright Bird Photography

What's your best piece of advice to couples who are planning their weddings for 2011?

Bright Bird PhotographyRelax. Don't fret the small stuff…or the big stuff. Don't be apologetic for not taking someones advice, just listen, and take from it what you will. It's your day and it should be a reflection of you.

You don't need to have a fancy wedding to have the perfect wedding. We chose to have our wedding on a Sunday, because it was less expensive. Going with a venue that includes certain things like tables, chairs, linens, and even food was a big help.

Before you start spending money, sit down with each other and talk about what parts of a wedding are most important? Find out what that is, and make that your luxury item that you can spend a little more on. Is it having great photography? Then find a great photographer, who's work you love and who can understand who you are. Maybe they are a bit more expensive, but thats your luxury item.

Is it the food? Then find an amazing caterer and spend a little more there. Is it the cake? Then go with a bakery that you love. Maybe it's the dress or the suit? Spend your money on that. You don't need to have everything be top shelf – for instance, we made our own take-away gifts – Lavender Shortbread Cookies, and we found our centerpieces at a flea market!

Lastly…one of the best pieces of advice I got was to "eat breakfast!"

Bright Bird Photography

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Was there ever a question that there *wouldn't* be bow ties?!?

Never! Not one question. The only question was vests or no vests. We, smartly, decided on vests…and shockingly, short sleeve white button down shirts. It's Palm Springs!

Anything else you'd like to add?

I feel like we already said too much, but…The time when we will all be able to be married legally cannot come soon enough!

Bright Bird Photography


* Editor's Note: This wedding was originally submitted to us as a 2010 wedding. As a result, the URL of this story will retain its filing as a 2010 submission, even though the Chris & Rich had a 2008 wedding date.


Photographer: Bright Bird Photography :: Reception Venue: Parker Hotel :: Caterer: Mister Parkers


Submitted via TwoBrightLights

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