Joe + Kalia in the Edie
A gorgeously eclectic Californian wedding featuring our Edie gown.
Your names: Kalia and Joe
Where are you from: Los Angeles, CA
Wedding location: Culver City, CA
Your names: Kalia and Joe
Where are you from: Los Angeles, CA
Wedding location: Culver City, CA
How did you decide on your GLL gown and accessories?
I’ll admit that I originally thought that I’d buy my wedding dress online. I had seen too many episodes of “Say Yes to The Dress,” and thought that all bridal boutiques were massive with huge selections, which is not me. However, after a friend guilted me into going to a low-key boutique, I realised that the experience could be so different and more personal. I also realised that I was a boho, unique bride which led me to GLL. I didn’t want a dress that I had seen on thousands of other brides and that you couldn’t remember. I wanted to stand out but still feel effortless… not an easy task but GLL has mastered it.
When I first went to the GLL showroom in Venice, I felt like this place just gets me. It was industrial, but soft. Simple but detailed. Welcoming but not overbearing. I had stumbled upon an urban sanctuary of lace and style. And then when the champagne and macarons came out I started to think “can I live here?” (P.S. Meagan was my stylist during both of my visits and was amazing).
I knew I wanted something very form-fitting with my arms and back out. I first tried on Verdelle and Alexandra, which I liked but couldn’t decide between. One week later the Elixir line was launched and I KNEW my dress would be from that line! I tried on Paloma and Edie, and couldn’t stop thinking about the tassels and movement of Edie! I also adored the nude underpinning which not only felt sexy but also broke up some of the ivory. I came back one more time to visit Edie and knew that it fit with the playfulness of our venue and my personality. It was ornate without being over-the-top, made me look like I was poured into it, and it was super comfortable – I could see myself dancing and shimmying all night in it.
Describe your look in three words…
Different, playful, sleek.
How did he propose?
In a sneaky-surprising way. We are a pretty low-key couple, so I was pretty shocked at the amount of planning that went into the proposal. It was on our 6 year dating anniversary, but I already had dinner plans with my sister and a friend. I was fighting a cold, so when my sister mysteriously canceled I was pleasantly relieved. Joe swooped in on those plans and asked if he could take me to dinner instead to celebrate our anniversary. We hardly ever celebrate so I tried to get out of it but he insisted!
After a nice dinner at Crustacean in Beverly Hills, he said he wanted to take me to one more place. Naturally, I was annoyed because I was sick and barely wanted to go to dinner. Again he insisted and we ended up at The Line Hotel in Korea Town where he had completely decorated a room with flowers and candles, and it had a gorgeous view of all of LA. He said “Happy Anniversary” and fooled me into thinking this was just a fun celebration. On the bed was a photo album of all of our fondest memories from the past 6 years. Each photo included a memory he had written about that day or moment and why it was so special to our relationship. On the last page was a picture we had taken at a wedding the week prior, where he caught the garter belt. The final words were, “I can’t wait for the next chapter of our journey.”
As I looked up, he started digging in his pocket and it wasn’t until THAT moment that I realised what was happening. He got down on one knee, pulled out the ring, and asked the big question! Of course I said yes, but then started understanding how much planning had gone into this whole elaborate plot!
What was your goal for your wedding / what was the most important aspect to you?
Easy, memorable dinner party: We wanted it to have the ease of coming to one of the parties we have at home but in a memorable setting. We purposely avoided some of the wedding traditions like colour schemes, bouquet tosses and cake cutting. Big Daddy’s was such a unique venue in that it sells very cool, eclectic, vintage décor. It was like inviting our guests to celebrate in 20 different one-of-kind living rooms. So we treated it like our home and thought, “if we were just throwing a party at home, what would be all of the favourites things to have?” We’d definitely have fancy tacos, cheeses, simple flowers, great wine, donuts and lots of dancing. We’re not huge drinkers, so we decided to forego the extensive open bar and instead have the things we like to drink – wine, Aperol spritzes, champs and margaritas.
Another honorable mention for the ‘ease’ factor goes to my mismatched bridesmaid squad of beauties! Since we didn’t have a colour scheme, I challenged them with all buying dresses that they felt sexy in and would wear again – no matter the colour. The dresses just had to look somewhat cohesive and hopefully effortless. They totally nailed it and I was blessed with a Vogue-worthy pack of hotties by my side.
Tacos: We LOVE tacos, so opted for one of the best taco trucks in LA, Guerrilla Tacos. These aren’t just regular tacos, but gourmet tacos packed with flavour and intensity. They also emulate LA street style which was aligned with our style. They’ve been on every ‘best-of’ list in LA and after one bite of their signature Sweet Potato Taco, we knew they were the one!
Intimacy: We kept it on the small side – 95 guests – so that we could have time to chat and visit with each person. A lot of our friends don’t live in LA, so it was critical that we had a chance to see them and speak with each of them AND that they got to sit and get to know each other. The long tables brought everyone together and the lounge-vignettes made it possible for people to sit and chat as they would at home.
The funniest moments on the day were…
Doing the Horrah (traditional Jewish chair dance). I was terrified and thought I would fall off the entire time. My eyes are closed in almost all of the pictures and I look absolutely frightened. I think they stopped that part early cause they thought I might faint.
When I put Joe’s ring on, I put it on the wrong hand! I got so nervous that I literally forgot right from left. He was no help either as he just shoved both of his hands in mine and gave me a look like, “pick a hand and a finger.” I wanted to “put a ring on it,” but couldn’t find the finger!
Our vows. We both love to laugh and don’t take ourselves too seriously, so writing our own vows was a must. We poked fun at ourselves and each other, as he referenced my obscure knowledge of B-list celebrities from the 90s and I called him out for getting overly excited during Game of Thrones episodes.
What was the most stressful part to planning?
We planned the entire wedding in 6 months, which is totally do-able but doesn’t give you a lot of wiggle room for indecisiveness. We needed to make decisions fast and once. When it came to making choices – weddings are all about choice – we realised we needed a system so we came up with a process: get recommendations from friends, review the top 3, then choose 1. Once I decided that I was a GLL bride, choosing the dress was almost instinctual. I couldn’t have been more pleased with our vendors and venue!
The guest list. Especially since we wanted to keep it intimate, this was a very tense process for both of us. Not just deciding who to invite and sending out the invites, but waiting for the RSVPs was like waiting to hear back from colleges! LOL! We opted for an eco-friendly online-only RSVP, so bypassed the whole RSVP card thing. I used Zola to manage my entire guest list, and I used the app to watch it daily to see who could come and who couldn’t. Two weeks before the wedding, we needed to lock in the numbers with our vendors but we still had friends who hadn’t told us one way or another. It all worked out, but that was a nerve-wracking experience.
Any top beauty/health/fitness or wedding preparation advice that you can share…
Zola: That was my go-to place for almost all of my planning. They provided the platform for our wedding website, gift and honeymoon fund registry, guest list, etc. I recommend this to any modern bride looking for a unique planning experience.
Yoga: My saving grace to keep me balanced, toned and focused on what really matters. I got really into mindfulness practices during this process and helped calm my stress and get me out of my mind. My favourite blog: rootyogatherapy.com
Pinterest: I mean, you can’t go wrong with this app to organise all of your disparate ideas into a cohesive vision.
Other blogs for ideas: I discovered Big Daddy’s Antiques on greenweddingshoes.com
A GLL woman is to you…
A risk-taker who knows what she wants and goes after it. Authentic. Dances to the beat of her own drum – and keeps dancing! Makes her own traditions. Not afraid to be different.
Any last advice or words of wisdom that you can share…
It’s your day and experience, so be authentic to who you are as a couple. If what you love is tacos (because let’s be honest, they are pure joy), then make that happen. Don’t be afraid to be different. If you’re not into cake, have pie, donuts or a fun desserts bar. I’ve heard a lot of brides talk about what they are ‘supposed’ to do or have. As a GLL bride, my motto is to plan the wedding that feels honest and natural to you and your partner as you start this new beautiful chapter.
GLL gown: Edie
The Groom wore: John Varvatos
Photographer: Martina Micko
Videographer: Tighe Dorsey
Venue: Big Daddy’s Antiques
Florist: Oldvine Florals
Stylist/Coordinator: Sweet Emilia Jane
Hair: Dry Bar Culver City and my sister
Makeup: Felicia La Tour