The moment you get engaged, everybody starts throwing around the word “perfect.” You’re the perfect couple. The rings have to be perfect. You hunt for the perfect dress. There are a million and one details to figure and finalize to make the big day perfect.

Bridal magazines, even our own Wedding Guide, are tulle-layered tomes of perfection, bursting at the French seams with invitations, place settings and appetizers that are just so. Who wouldn’t want that?

But the thing is, this isn’t Martha Stewart’s wedding and it isn’t Vera Wang’s, either. It’s yours. So make it your kind of perfect, a celebration that speaks to the real you, as individuals and as a couple, the real life you’re starting together.

In this issue, along with an exhaustive list of wedding and party businesses to help you pick and choose and plan, you’ll find all kinds of ways to bring the real you to the event and have some fun.

  • Photo by JJT Photography

Read on and you’ll see why Jenna and Cory Sutton’s wedding on a ranch in Carlotta couldn’t have been anyone else’s. No cookie-cutter event for them: From her horseback entrance to his doe-and-buck-topped groom’s cake, the Suttons made their wedding their own.

After the formal photos are done (timeless! gorgeous! now you can exhale), how about a little goofing off? Take a peek inside some local photo booths (you remember — the pre-selfie selfie) and see how guests and newlyweds are clowning around and capturing the good times.

We’re also looking at some sweetly different flower arrangements with plenty of personality to inspire your imagination. And if you or someone you love has the itch to stitch, be sure to check out our story on cozy wedding quilts that are destined to become family heirlooms.

We hope you’ll enjoy flipping through the photos and the stories here — and remember, you can pore over past editions and expanded listings online at — and that they’ll help you put together something better than some perfect wedding: your perfect wedding.
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About The Author

Jennifer Fumiko Cahill

Jennifer Fumiko Cahill

Jennifer Fumiko Cahill is the arts and features editor of the North Coast Journal. She won the Association of Alternative Newsmedia’s 2020 Best Food Writing Award and the 2019 California News Publisher's Association award for Best Writing.

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