Thursday

Lindsey + Justin // Las Posas Country Club Holiday Highlight

Justin time for Christmas, Lindsey's favorite holiday, here is their highlight reel! I had such a good time going out to Camarillo to the Las Posas Country Club. It might have rained - but it didn't - I think it could have snowed though, and everyone would have felt right at home. Speaking of snow, the confetti that was thrown at them (watch for it) as they recessed down the aisle was shocking to them - with its shimmery brilliance and pesky ability to stick to their clothes, they were sparkling the rest of the night!

Chris Schmitt Photography ran the photo end of things, wrapping up a great end to November!

Merry Christmas!


Lindsey + Justin // Las Posas Country Club Holiday Highlight from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Kristen + Arvin // A 2 Day Indian + Vietnamese Celebration

Two days, two cultures, parties and family celebrations from morning to night - sounds like another Charles Lauren Films weekend! This highlight shows the great time we had with Kristen and Arvin - and we were very amazed to learn that their family owns Shershah's Indian Restaurant in Marina del Rey, which we go to all the time! What a coincidence!

Kristen + Arvin // A 2 Day Indian + Vietnamese Celebration from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

For Those Newly Engaged - Have a joyful Christmas!!

Wednesday

Amanda + Rudy's Wedding // The Luxe // Bel-Air

Rudy and Amanda at The Luxe in Bel-Air. What can we say? They met on a private yacht going to Catalina, they fell in love, snuck away into the bathroom and have been on fire ever since! Rudy wrote her a very good song - which we used as the backdrop for their highlights - check this out! The photographer was the brilliant Chris Schmitt who was able to channel some of Rudy's boundless energy and planning was done by Maryam of Delicate Details.

Amanda + Rudy's Wedding // The Luxe // Bel-Air from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Abigail + Raul // Wedding Highlights

Abigail and Raul had a very special wedding at the Church on the Way in Van Nuys and the Glendale Hilton. We loved the idea to take pictures on top of the roof by Chris Schmitt Photography. The reception room was huge and amazing and the mariahis kept playing great music.

Congratulations!

Abigail + Raul // Wedding Highlights from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Saturday

Lisa + Ryan // Wedding Preview // Long Beach Aquarium

Lisa + Ryan // 5D Preview // Long Beach Aquarium from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Lisa and Ryan had an amazing wedding at the aquarium! Here is a little preview of their day to wet your taste buds- I am quite proud of the ending with the fish- which you will see what I mean when you watch it!


Korean First Birthday (Dol)

Korean First Birthday (Dol) from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

This is a fun look at torturing little children! In a good way! ;-) Jonah celebrates his first birthday Korean style and we got to be a part of it! They had it at the awesome restaurant called YongSuSan in Koreatown and it was a blast!


Friday

Mark + Sivan // 11.22.2009 // Westlake Village, California

Mark + Sivan // 11.22.2009 // Westlake Village, California from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.



It was wonderful getting to know Mark and Sivan's families. Both of their parents and siblings/friends poured their hearts out with advice and wisdom during the toasts - advice everyone should adhere to! It all took place at the Westlake Village Inn. Photography by David Michael Photography. It was very intimate, very personal and beautiful. Please watch this incredible afternoon wedding, and feel their excitement and love! Mazel Tov!

Wednesday

Muzeo Anaheim

This is a quick promotional piece we made for a new museum called "Muzeo." Surprisingly, none of the visitors, kids or board members could remember what the name means...

Muzeo Anaheim from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Tuesday

Maria + Rick // Malibu Highlights

Hey Everyone! A few months ago I had an amazing weekend with Rick + Maria in Malibu! The pre-ceremony was at The Malibu Beach Inn at Carbon Canyon, which as we found out has many top name stars who frequent there- especially on wedding days!

However; since we are wedding videographers and not paparazzi, it would be beneath us to disclose who we saw, but it was simply awesome! According to the "Star" we talked to she/he said that the Malibu Beach Inn is a way to get away from everyone constantly staring and gawking at you- yikes! They were also refreshed that we respected their privacy not to film them and thought that our bride looked beautiful! It's a gorgeous location and we can see why the best of the best chill out there! But enough of that-

We then followed Rick and Maria to The Sunset Restaurant in Malibu. We had the pleasure of working with Occasions, which if you don't already know is one of the best planning companies out there! The wedding ceremony was phenomenal and the party afterwards was simply fantastic! Rick's Dad actually hired the same singer to play who had played at his wedding- so everything came full circle! Here are a few highlights of the amazing wedding day- enjoy and Congratulations to Rick + Maria once more!



Maria + Rick // Malibu, California from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Maria + Rick // Malibu, California from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Pavlina + Ted // 10.17.09 // Wedding Highlights

Pavlina + Ted // 10.17.09 // Wedding Highlights from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.





Ted and Pavlina have an amazing story, with families and friends from all over the world. Even though they met and live in Manhattan, they had their wedding at St. Philip the Apostle Catholic Church in Pasadena and the reception at the La Cañada Flintridge Country Club. When you are watching the video, look for the cake. The bottom layer has playing cards and 7s for luck in gambling, the middle layer has skis for their love of snow sports and the top layer has the American and Bulgarian flags!

Monday

Cecilia + Alekhine // 9.19.09 // A Palm Springs Wedding

Cecilia + Alekhine // 9.19.09 // A Palm Springs Wedding from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.


This is the wedding of the Year! Okay, I know- I am not trying to play favorites. We loved everyone's wedding we filmed this year, of course! The reason this one has become my ultimate favorite, is simply because it is a stepping stone in our company's development of a True Cinema Wedding.

It doesn't matter that we filmed Alekhine's brother's wedding just a year ago and already knew these guys in and out. It doesn't matter that Cecilia is beautiful and the venue The Parker in Palm Springs is a retro blessing from heaven to shoot at. Although, all of those reasons help! ;-)

The reason I am so in love with this highlight we are showing you, is that we actually filmed it, with a 35mm film camera. It is what we've been looking for since we left film school and started our company... depth of field. It is why movies move us and video has limits. If you want your day documented it is true that the 35mm camera does little to provide this. But if you are like us- who are charged with an emotional desire to film what is beautiful and romantic in this world, this is an eye opener. I am always a sap for unrequited love, that's really what moves our world. I had been looking for a camera to fall in love with, but I always had come up short. My unrequited love for the perfect camera was akin to Rose and Jack , or our star crossed lovers Romeo and Juliet. I was even in line with Werther and Lotte (from the Sorrows of Young Werther) to be forever denied my beauty. But good news has come on film's foot. I have found my love in Alekhine and Cecilia, Kristin and Mark, Lisa and Ryan and all the weddings of tomorrow. We have always claimed to be the Wedding Cinema Company- which was pretty true, but now we are. This is what we were born to become.

Oh and by the way Congratulations once more Cecilia and Alekhine, we hope this film moves you as much as it moved us- and of course there is more to come!

Friday

10.1.09 // Annie + Josh // Palm Springs

Again we were off to Palm Springs to film the wedding of Annie + Josh! We loved the laid back atmosphere, the guests with their excitement for the newlywed couple, and the pure beauty of a very amazing desert. The Korakia Pensione is a great place for a wedding or honeymoon!

These factors all made October 1st a great way to start the month off right! Annie was beautiful and Josh was looking really sexy - thanks for the great night!

A Wedding // Korakia Pensione // Palm Springs from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Thursday

Kathy + Kenny // First Taiwanese + Cal Tech Highlights

This is a highlight reel from Kenny + Kathy's wedding on June 13, 2009! They were a pleasure to to work with, but most of all we were impressed with their faith and love for each other and God. We always love to do weddings at a couple's own church, it is really special!

Wednesday

Gina + Patrick's Engagement Session

We love Gina and Patrick!! 

These are pictures from Gina + Patrick's engagement shoot! We will be photographing their wedding on New Year's Eve at the Summit House in Fullerton. It will be an awesome night since it is the countdown to a new year and our bride and groom will be ringing it in with us their guests!

Their engagement was taken in San Clemente, a favorite haunt of Patrick's for surfing. He goes everywhere on the planet to surf, but San Clemente is where he pretty much grew up surfing.

Gina looks stellar and so beautiful!

They both make a superlative coupe and didn't mind getting their feet and pants wet! You will see!

They rock and we will keep everyone posted!

Click on the picture to watch a slideshow of their engagement photos!





Friday

Alia + Eduardo // The Odyssey

This is the opening from a very loving couple. They had a Catholic ceremony, took lots of pictures and danced all night long at The Odyssey event center in Granada Hills!

Alia + Eduardo // The Odyssey from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Thanks Again!

Thursday

Thank You Note

Lee + Jeffrey // 5.30.09 // La Venta Inn

Lee + Jeffrey // 5.30.09 // La Venta Inn from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.


Lee and Jeffrey were an awesome couple to work with. It was an inspiring wedding with a great emphasis on traditions, but also having just a really fun time. It is always great to see two people who really love each other tie the knot! 

Melika + Rick // 9.12.09 // The LA InterContinental Hotel

Melika + Rick // 9.12.09 // The LA InterContinental Hotel from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

This was Melika and Rick's amazing evening wedding! We partied with them into the wee hours of the night and enjoyed every minute of it! As the new popular song says "Tonight's going to be a good night" it certainly was for these two awesome people! So, of course we used that song when we edited their highlight reel! Congrats once more! 

Wednesday

Brian Eno!

For the University Art Museum at CSULB, we were able to photograph a great party with Brian Eno! He was here for a new visual art installation at the museum. We love his song "The Big Ship", which was used in a great BMW commercial in 2006. Here are some pictures of him hanging out with Chris Scoates, the museum director!










Sunday

Elisa + Benjamin // 10.03.09 // Same Day Edit

We had such a good time at this fall harvest themed wedding! There were pumpkins, s'mores, candles and love! Congratulations!

Elisa + Benjamin // 10.03.09 // Same Day Edit from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Friday

Tera + Tim's Photo Slideshow

We had an absolutely fabulous time photographing Tera and Tim's engagement shoot! They had picked to do their engagement shoot in Old Town Orange because Tim had bought her ring there- so it fit perfectly! They are an amazing couple together. ;-)
 
Click on the picture to watch a slideshow of their engagement photos!





Wednesday

Voting Begins!! My Foxla's Hot List of Best Wedding Videographers

We've done it again!! We are up for contention as BEST WEDDING VIDEOGRAPHER in Los Angeles!!! Last year we were #3, this year we plan to be #1, with your help of course!!! So if you see our work and love it, drop us a vote! If you are a past client, I don't need to tell you what you should be doing right now! ;-) The voting continues until November 6th- so there is plenty of time for you to vote and then tell everyone you know that they should vote for us as well, since of course we are the best! If we win there will be a party like it's 2009!! So there's you bribe.. opps I mean incentive! The best incentive however, is our work. Everyone knows Charles Lauren Films is full of passion and perfection, artistry and expertise- so go vote for the best! Click Here to be sent to the polls to vote for US! Our rank right now is below.... so help us move it up! Thanks in advance for making us #1!

Monday

Wedding at the Long Beach Aquarium

Check out James + Wendy's wedding at the Long Beach Aquarium of the Pacific in 2006! That's looking back in time! They are doing great, just bought a house near us and are changing the world of medicine and web design. They got ready at the Hyatt in Long Beach and strolled across the Rainbow Lagoon to be married under the sharks!


Wedding at the Long Beach Aquarium from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Monee + Mena // 09.06.09 // Same Day Edit

We started at Monee's house which is literally down the street from her childhood church, Saint Mark's Coptic Orthodox Church in Los Angeles. After the robes and crowns of this traditional ceremony are taken off, the packed church heads to the amazing hotel Casa Del Mar in Santa Monica. We all get some shots on the sand and head in for a lot of fun. Tons of people, tons of fun and laughter and tons of love. The coordinator was Terri Castillo from Bellisimo Events.

Congratulations! We loved the candy bar!



Monee + Mena // 09.06.09 // Same Day Edit from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Wednesday

Sangeet + Mendhi + Vatana

We were blessed to be able to participate in the events leading up to Smeeta and Subir's wedding. We film a lot of Indian weddings, but not usually all of the activities the families get to do before. It was very beautiful and a lot of fun!

The coordinator of the wedding was Maryam Forutan from www.delicate-details.com!


Sangeet + Mendhi + Vatana from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Tuesday

In Memory of Ted Kennedy...


{ a road on Cape Cod }

Monsignor Lloyd Torgerson

Monsignor Lloyd Torgerson from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.



Here is our favorite priest from Saint Monica's church in Santa Monica, California. It was great to see him come out of church and have fun delivering this message to a bride and groom at Trump. It is an Indian story about a man being chased by a tiger and falling into a well with snakes at the bottom. Should he worry that he is about to die, or should he just eat a fruit hanging from the cliff wall...

For anyone looking for a church, Saint Monica's is great and Monsignor Lloyd Torgerson is the best Catholic speaker we have seen. He has a strong presence, very empowering messages and brings a lot to a wedding. He was just at the funeral for Eunice Kennedy Shriver, and he was great friend of Ted Kennedy.

Billy + Ivy // 5.23.2009

We had the awesome pleasure of filming Billy and Ivy's wedding this past May! They started at the Langham in Pasadena, then moving onto their church and finally the reception was held at the fabulous Marriott Laguna Cliffs in Dana Point! It was a beautiful day for a wedding, despite a little bit of Memorial Weekend traffic. Everything turned out just the way they had always planned, which is what we always want for our clients! Congratulations Billy and Ivy!


Billy + Ivy // 5.23.2009 from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

A Twist on Karaoke

Check out how the bridesmaids, flower girls and groomsmen entertain the guests of honor Billy and Ivy- the groom and bride! This is taking it to another level- Karaoke style, so don't stop believing!

Wedding Heroes Live: Don't Stop Believing from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Friday

09.07.08 Highlights

This was a great morning and afternoon wedding in Manhattan Beach last year. They met online, were living in two different states across the country, and in a whirlwind of a romance, they planned this incredible event!

09.07.08 Highlights from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Impromptu First Dance

At the Hotel Belamar in Manhattan Beach, Natalie and Erik decided to leave the hustle and bustle of their afternoon wedding for some alone time dancing, cuddling and kissing in the privacy of the car park!

Impromptu First Dance from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Tuesday

It is always calm in Central Park

I have this picture next to my desk that I took last time I was in New York. It is very serene, very calm...NOT LIKE ALL THE ACTIVITY GOING ON RIGHT NOW!!!!

We were part of three great weddings last weekend, which we will have highlights ready soon! We are editing, having tons of meetings and getting ready for next weekend's weddings! We are also looking forward to all of the creative couples in September, we are going to have another great month.

Cheers,

David





Friday

Roxana + Cesar // 3.7.2009

This is a highlight reel from a wedding we did a few months ago. We had the honor of creating a video for one of the bridesmaids and groomsmen a few years ago, so seeing them out of their dress and tuxedo was totally fun!

We started out at Heritage Park in Santa Fe Springs and then moved to their church in Downey. This church has some great ministers, we love working with them all!

Congratulations!


Roxana + Cesar // 3.7.2009 from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Thursday

Beth + Lisa // 8.16.2009 // Preview

We just wanted to share another awesome wedding we had this past Sunday with Beth and Lisa! It's an great story of finding true love and honoring their Judaic heritage with a remarkable ceremony! Not to mention the reception that took place in the old Redondo Beach Library. It was a blast... for them and us! Their photography was done by Chou Photography



Beth + Lisa // 8.16.2009 // Preview from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Tuesday

Kristin + Mark's Preview 8.15.2009

There is much more to come for this rocking and sexy couple! We can't say enough about the whole bridal party, the song writing family, the location, the chinese lanterns, the trains, the beautiful sunny day and the great dress! Wow!

Congratulations Kristin and Mark!


Kristin + Mark's Preview 8.15.2009 from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Wednesday

Winners of the 2009 Telly Awards


Once again Charles Lauren Films was honored with Telly Awards. This year we received two, one for our video of the 100 Year Anniversary of the First Presbyterian Church of Hemet and the other for the Long Beach Aviation Legacy Project with Boeing.

Here Is The Link



Creative Ceremony

Here is the ceremony section from a video that we did last year. It took place at the Seal Beach Navy Golf Course. 
Watch it until the end - the groom has a little surprise to trick the bride before they kiss for the first time!



A Creative Ceremony from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Sunday

We Are So Proud of Eric Tiede

You have probably seen him around on your TV at home. Eric Tiede was the lead actor in one of our movies that we made during film school. We were checking out some of his recent roles on YouTube and just had to share them with you!

Here is his MySpace page!















Saturday

Sandra + Danny // Malibu Highlights // 6.5.2009

Danny and Sandra look so happy in this video! They are the perfect couple and are going to be having so much fun in their life. We start out at her house where her family dances her out to the waiting limo. Then it is off to Malibu where Danny is dressing with the guys. Really nice backlit photos ensue, followed by the ceremony, and crazy crazy crazy dancing in the reception room!


Sandra + Danny // Malibu Highlights // 6.5.2009 from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

6.27.2009 Preview

Check out this opening sequence from Ani + Chris' wedding!


6.27.09 Preview from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Tuesday

The Full Dark Waltz Dance

And here is the complete version of their dance! We love live multi-camera events!


Zurprise: The Dark Wedding WaltZ from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Ani + Chris // Sneaking off for their Dark Waltz

When you have great ideas for your wedding, something different, creative, out of that ordinary - let us know - we would love to incorporate it into your video and make something really cool!

This song and this couple made magic on the night of their wedding! While a relative gave a toast about how great they are, the two snuck off to their room to change clothes and have more practice at their surprise dance!

Sunday

Another Graduate from the CLF Future Cinematographer School

Kaitlin has been at it again, this flower girl took the challenge and astounded us all!


Friday

Michael + Ashley // The Bookends

We are really proud of the way the beginning and end of this wedding video turned out. The lighting, bubbles, the words people said and the genuine feeling of love came together to make something we still enjoy watching. 


Take a quick look at the beginning of Michael and Ashley's wedding video and let us know what you think. This wedding took place at the Padua Hills Theater in Claremont, California.




Michael + Ashley // The Film Begins from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.




Then take a look at the end! Part two: the double whammy ending with a fun conclusion AND a spiritual one!



Michael + Ashley // The Film Ends from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Saturday

We Love You All!


We hope you are all hanging in there in this summer heat! We have a ton of great weddings coming up in August and can't wait to share some highlight reels from the last month or so!


Friday

Fun by the Beach in Laguna

We love the speed and tempo of this opening segment from Darick and Nori's wedding! From the beach to his house, down PCH and up the stairs, this wintery video in the heat of summer should cool you off!

Laguna Beach Ritz-Carlton from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Monday

Best of Weddings 2009!

Thank you again!!! To all of our clients who voted for us on The Knot for their Best of Weddings survey! We were the highest ranked in Southern California with 3 stars and #1 in Los Angeles! Cheers to everyone!






Happy 4th of July!

A little late we know, but we were in Kernville having fun this 4th watching the fireworks, rafting, scoping out busy beavers, serenading the moon with cowboys and playing in the river!








Thursday

We Love Thank You Cards!

We just got this beautiful card from one of our bride's parents!





5-18-2009

Say hello to Trisha and Michael! They had a very intimate day with just their closest family and friends at Arbor Terrace in Fallbrook! We loved the umbrellas, the shoes, the jungle and the decorated car! Their photographer was Cean from Cean One Photography who surprised us with his great working style and exciting personality. 

May 18, 2009 from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Tuesday

Michael and Trisha: The Groomsmen

Michael's groomsmen and father were so funny and had so much to say, we had to add this to Michael and Trisha's preview! This took place at The Grand Tradition in Fallbrook, California. You will travel with them on a roller coaster ride of emotions + Champagne, Tecate, Tears, Thrills and Ties, it is all right here!

Michael and the Funniest Groomsmen Ever! from Charles + Lauren Films on Vimeo.

Sunday

Introducing: FREE Camera Lessons for All Flower Girls!

For a limited time if you book with us, Kaitlin will give your flower girls (maybe ring bearers) hands-on one-on-one instruction in the technics and tricks used in operating a cinema camera! With a few more lessons after the wedding day, they may even get hired on!




Wedsters, Knotties Breakout!

We like to use all sorts of music to craft our videos. The bride and groom usually give us a list of songs that are must haves and we spice it up with our secret sauce of modern classical and soundtracks. We love Zooster's Breakout by Hans Zimmer, the breakout composer of the last 15 years! Take a look at how the editing and shots along with the different subject matter change the use and feeling of the same song!







Caltech is a great place for Photo Sessions!

All you need is a permit and look at the classically shaped buildings, modern bridges, rose gardens, rotundas and pathways you have access to! We have a highlight coming up soon where we were here again and it looked amazing!

Padua Hills: Let's Get It On!

Here is a short and fast moving highlight reel from Teresa and Matt's wedding. It took place at the Padua Hills Theater in Claremont, California.




Wednesday

Five ways to screw up your wedding, part three: have a wedding you'll hate!

This is an article by the most intelligent wedding officiant out there, Elizabeth Oakes. She has a web site called Marriage To Go and you can always see her purple PT Cruiser driving around the Westside of LA! She has an incredible wedding related column with The Examiner that everyone should have as an RSS feed. Here is one of our favorite articles:



The instant you announce your engagement you’ll be serenaded with a a little number called, “You Haff To” and it goes something like this (if you know it, sing along!):

“Oh, you HAFF TO be escorted down the aisle by your father/ Oh, you HAFF TO bear your drunken Auntie Tess/ Oh, you can’t defy tradition, though you’d rather/You HAFF TO or you’ll have a wedding mess!!!....”  

(then, on one knee, like Jolson)

“....just like miiiiiiine!”

It’s an old refrain, a sad song, really, usually sung by people who know only one type of wedding: the kind they grew up with, or the one they were pummeled into having themselves.  Here’s the scoop, kidlets: you don’t HAFF TO do anything no matter what anyone says, so please take the Haff-To Zombies with a grain of salt (admitting of course that you don’t haff to because I say so either, to be fair.)  

But, after many years of working with couples beleaguered by Haff-To maniacs, I can say to you with confidence:

Five Ways To Screw Up Your Wedding, Part Three: Have A Wedding You’ll Hate!

In initial meetings I hear glum, sardonic-sounding clients tell me how they really don’t want to have such-and-such sort of wedding, but they’re going to anyway because the family (or incipient spouse or friends or whomever) demanded it.   The wedding that is insisted upon is usually the “traditional” Big White Wedding with all the trimmings, but the client confides that he/she would really rather have a civil ceremony with just a few close friends, or have a cocktail party wedding with little black dresses and smart-looking jackets, or fly to Hawaii...or...or...or.  This sends the Haff-To Zombies into a frenzy!!! and they attack these crazy newfangled notions of a wedding without considering that  a) maybe the couple doesn’t want to have the same wedding the zombie did, and b) maybe the zombie’s wedding wasn’t so hot even though it followed all the zombie rules.  These zombies are engaging in a bizarre reflex behavior, a self-delusion that they are the guardians of “tradition”   (we use the word "tradition" advisedly in this column, since most of what people think is "traditional" is not--that's fodder for another post.)

Anyway, this thoughtless enforcement of a questionable wedding status quo is a testament to the effectiveness of wedding marketing; it’s also a testament to the effectiveness of peer pressure and family/social guilt.   I do understand that family relationships are complex and yes, you may want to defer to the wishes of others under some circumstances, but even so remember remember remember: you don’t haff to.

There are three trajectories once the Haff-To Zombies start singing the Haff-To song and your internal guilt/peer pressure switches have been activated: 

Trajectory 1: Be tough and have exactly the wedding you want, no matter what anyone says.  

You have every right, as long as you’re paying for it (this gets a little more complicated if your parents have ponied up the money.)  It is true that, on a ritual level, weddings mark the dividing line between your life as a child--where you are told what you have to do--and your adult life, where you make the decisions about your own actions and take responsibility for them.  Sometimes your wedding is the place where you introduce this idea and the boundary behavior (as shrinks call it) that make that changeover clear.  Sometimes purposefully drawing this line is important, depending on how enmeshed you are with your family.  Feelings may get hurt, but that may be a necessary price for your freedom from controlling persons.  In my experience it is often true that controllers who choose to act hurt rather than being happy for you on your wedding day probably are not going to be made happy by ANYTHING you do, even if you completely give in to them.  This is one of the trade secrets of controlling persons, acting as if nothing you do ever makes them completely happy.  Don’t fall for it. It’s your wedding.  You drive.

Trajectory 2:  Compromise and incorporate some of the Haff-To suggestions. 

As long as you’re dealing with reasonable requests and not total control freaks (whom, to reiterate, will not be satisfied no matter what you do) this is a feasible position to take.  The questions to ask yourself are: how much ground do I give? Will incorporating this element make me cringe during my ceremony? 

Common Haff-To tropes include insisting that a “real” father--maybe an absent biological father instead of a supportive stepfather--walk the bride down the aisle, or inclusion of religious content that is not consistent with the belief systems of either party to be married.   These problems can be solved creatively by thinking outside of the Haff-To Box (well, by understanding there isn’t a Haff-To Box, really.)  

So for example, a bride can be escorted by anyone--both parents, both dads, brothers, a phalanx of flower girls strewing marigolds, the groom, or by no one at all.   Yes, last I checked, women can walk down wedding aisles quite nicely all by themselves, ever since footbinding was outlawed anyway.

Trajectory 3:  Give in to guilt and peer pressure; drink the Haff-To KoolAid® and have the wedding everyone is nagging you to have.  

You’ll hate it, you’ll regret it, you’ll resent all those people who talked you into it, and if/when you divorce and remarry you’ll say (as many do, almost verbatim every time): “I want something intimate and meaningful and more in keeping with my wishes this time, because last time I had that Big White Wedding and I don’t remember it, didn’t enjoy it, and clearly it didn’t guarantee a successful marriage.”    That’s from many horses’ mouths, people; it’s scary how often I hear it. 

And a note to grooms here:  I mostly hear this complaint from males who got dragged through a Big White Wedding that had no redeeming value for them.  And you have my sympathy, but dudes (and I am wagging a knowing wedding finger at you in emphasis): you did it to yourselves.  A wedding day is supposed to be important and meaningful for BOTH parties involved and, despite what the Marital Industrial Complex has told your bride, it’s NOT all about her.  SPEAK UP.   Indicate early on what your wedding preferences are and, if you’re being hauled by the collarbutton through a planning process that takes no notice of  your wishes, state your objections strenuously.  Refuse to go through with it if you have to.   I mean, you know..... first try negotiating nicely and all, but this might not be fruitful.  I’ve dealt with determined princess brides who have drunk the Big White Wedding KoolAid® and I know they are often not easily persuaded.  

Anyway, you CAN have a great wedding experience, and you should!  You’re entitled and allowed, but make your voice heard and your votes are counted.   As we say in the wedding sector, your happy marriage starts with your wedding; don’t be a pawn during the ramp-up process or you can look forward to a lifetime of continued pawniness.  You can start small if you like--why not float a trial balloon on a little issue first? say, your choice of tie (or no tie at all, if you hate them.)  Quelle scandale!!  Zombies, attack!!!

David and Kelsey Featured in New Wedding Game!


When the creators of Dream Day Wedding asked us if they could use our names and elements of our wedding in their new wedding simulator (hahah, I'm sure I remember that phone call last year), we had to say yes! Wedding computer games are really fun and funny - I am sure a few of you have used one, maybe when you were little children! 

The new game that is coming out is called "Dream Day Wedding: Viva Las Vegas". It lets you plan Kelsey and David's wedding, you can choose venues, food, flowers and videographers! PLEASE DON'T MAKE OUR WEDDING SUCK!! Check it out if you can, get in the Charles + Lauren wedding season spirit!




"The fifth hidden object game in the Dream Day franchise, and the third to focus on weddings, Dream Day Wedding: Viva Las Vegas puts you in charge of planning a lavish Las Vegas wedding for Kelsey and her fiancé David. While some sequels can start to lose their lustre, Viva Las Vegas seems as fresh as ever thanks to some clever new twists and a romantic, "feel good" story.

The gameplay - which involves searching cluttered scenes for a list of objects and clicking on them - will be familiar to hidden object game veterans, but it's the extra touches and attention to detail that make Viva Las Vegas stand out as a cut above.

For one thing, everything you're doing ties in with the story and the build-up to Kelsey and David's "big day," whether it's finding missing luggage tags so the couple can check into their hotel, picking flowers for the bouquets, choosing jewellery for the wedding party to wear, shopping for wedding favors, or even scooping gelato to ease frazzled  pre-wedding nerves."

Amazing Art for your Wall or Cards


I wanted to tell everyone about a long time friend of ours, Mark Leeds. He is an artist in Orange County who has been working for years creating very unique graphic art. He uses strong shapes and colors to bring emotion to the viewer. He does a lot of business in greeting cards and custom prints, so if you are looking for a different look, he might be it! 



Thursday

May 17, 2009

Kevin and Kathy, K and K, brought us much joy! They love to sing and can dance really well! They have a great story, dated at what looks like Silicon Valley's coolest restaurants and even wrote their own vows! We loved working with Chris and Jamie from JAC Photographers, they had some great ideas. The wedding took place at the Hotel Amarano in Burbank and the White House and Polo Room at Calamigos in Burbank! They are having a second wedding this weekend so we wanted to have this ready for them to share with the rest of their family! Remember South Pacific!


Tuesday

Dramatic Getting Ready in the Bride's House

From the tracking moves around the pure blue bouquets to the rack focus shots around the pond of the Long Beach Hyatt, watch this energetic and fast paced video that captures the amazing fun, love and beauty that filled this bride and groom's day! 



The Qualities of a Godly Husband

This is a long excerpt from Andy and Carol's ceremony, but their pastor had tons of great advice that we all can use! It is also fun to watch if you speak English or Chinese, since it is translated for you live!


May 9, 2009

Andy and Carol are the most joyful couple anyone could find! Their day started near South Coast Plaza and headed to the ceremony at the EFC of Irvine. After that, we all ran back to the Center Club in Costa Mesa! As you are watching, pay attention to what they can do with a pear!

The photography was done by Poetry in Light.



Friday

Mr. Bartley's Gourmet Burgers

If you are ever in Cambridge, Massachusetts near Harvard, you should definitely try to eat at Mr. Bartley's! The shared tables are classic, we had a great time talking with an MIT professor who studies the effects of roasting, burning and ripeness on coffee beans and flavor.
 
This hamburger restaurant's most appealing attribute is its menu, we think! If you click on the picture of the yellow menu below, you will see that each burger is named after an important policy maker, along with their attributes and what kind of cheese and toppings are related to them!