Deanna & Stephen’s Whimsical, Handcrafted South Bay Wedding

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When we photographed Deanna and Stephen’s engagement session at the Rengstorff House in Mountain View earlier this year, we had no idea the amazing transformation it would undergo on their wedding day! Sure, the 19th-century Victorian Italianate house remained as stately as ever, surrounded by lush greenery and chockablock with intriguing knickknacks, taxidermied creatures, and old-timey machinery such as Victrolas, manual typewriters, and wooden phones with exterior bells. Deanna’s vision, however, truly enlivened its exterior (and not just with the banner she constructed to string across the front of the house). We were impressed by how everything came together in a couple of hours.

The backyard was cozy and intimate, a perfect spot to hold their touching ceremony. After the bubble boy nearly veered off course during the processional, we were slightly concerned our teary-eyed bride might have trouble making her way to her equally teary-eyed groom, but her father cheerfully steered her in the right direction. During their unity salt ceremony, no granules were unnecessarily spilled but the wind abducted a few doilies. Luckily, no one was harmed.

The lawn games and vintage-style furniture in the yard in front of the house were a hit during cocktail hour. Guests signed their congratulations and well wishes on a customized wood plank, and some made use of the sunblock, insect repellent, handy wipes, hand warmers, and fleece wraps that Deanna thoughtfully provided.

The larger, unassuming side lawn, strung with cafe lights and outfitted with a mix of wooden farm tables and circular tables, couldn’t have been a more magical place to celebrate with family and friends. Fittingly, dinner was served family style as the sun set over the bay. We still can’t believe all the kids kept their hands off the rustic dessert station until after the cake was cut! It was totally eye candy, featuring drool-worthy macarons, cupcakes, and a variety of jarred delectables, as well as a cake that was frosted to look like it had wood grain! But the topper, literally, was the cake topper, two felt owls with a heart-shaped balloon that Deanna painstakingly needle-felted.

Speaking of felt, the bridal party’s bouquets were absolutely adorable, as were other hand-made details, including the fan programs, customized wire basket, and favors (matches in cork-topped vials, M&Ms for “real kids only”). Also adorable? Deanna and Stephen during their first dance. We’re not sure if Stephen was cracking jokes, but Deanna laughed the entire time they twirled from one part of the dancefloor to the other. (Incidentally, Deanna was stunning in her long, strapless gown, and Stephen was dapper in his gray suit with yellow tie and matching pom-pom boutonniere.)

It was such a joyous occasion, and we were privileged to capture it. Please enjoy this visual account of their special day.

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dessert station
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Bride’s dress: Mori Lee
Bride’s shoes: Bandolino
Groom’s suit: Alfani
Bridesmaids’ dresses: DressHome (Etsy)
Flowergirls’ dresses: NollaCollection (Etsy)
Hair & make-up: Imagi by Fiona
Caterer: Toast Catering
DJ & acoustic performer: All Ears DJ
Cake, cupcakes & jarred desserts: La Vie Douce Design
Macarons: Chef Chirp
Furniture rentals: Lost & Found Vintage Rental (San Jose)
Felt flowers: Etsy
Rubber stamp: lilimandrill (Etsy)
Salt & egg: Centered Ceramics (Etsy)
Guestbook board: Resalvaged (Etsy)

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