LOHO Bride // Real Bride: Gillian + Matt

How cool is this bride and groom? You don't even need to read on to know more, Gillian and Matt are the epitome of a bad ass couple. The groom is a hydrologist, in lieu of a guest book guests signed a guitar (for him) and notes on a typewriter (for her), they staged a flash mob to "Uptown Funk" and Gillian rocked Bo & Luca's "Capri" dress like no other. Be prepared to be blown away by the story of their legendary wedding. 

Can you tell us a little about yourself? It can literally be anything! We just want to know what gets you excited, even if it’s that you’re passionate about puppies.

I’m a writer with a love for all things nostalgic. I’m passionate about my craft, my family and the great big world we live in. I love being outdoors with a great book, good people and a spicy Bloody Mary.  I’ll take a night at home with a glass of wine over a night out any day. I have a borderline unhealthy obsession with Beyoncé.

How did you and your partner meet?

We met in college at the University of Nevada. Matt’s a seventh generation Nevadan. I’m a second-generation Nevadan on one side and a first-generation American on the other. We’re both tried-and-true Nevada kids. Matt was my older brother’s roommate and best friend. People always think that sound scandalous--I guess it does--but Matt and I were inseparable once we started dating and we had my brother’s approval throughout it all. My brother even said to me, “Of anyone in the world for you to date, I’m glad you picked Matt. He’s the only guy that deserves you.” People always ask…yes, they’re still best friends. And we make quite the little group of three. 

Were you channeling any style icons while dress shopping?

I always try to channel the confidence of Bey.

What was the best part of your LOHO Bride experience?

The best part of my LOHO experience was being in a setting that felt so welcoming and laid back. It wasn’t stuffy or busy or full of people looking to make a commission. It was basically the opposite of any dress-shopping show you watch on television. There were literally three people in the room—myself, my mom and Amanda. I fancy myself a recluse, so I absolutely loved that.

How did you choose your dress and what was the most magical part about it?

I fell in love with Bo & Luca designs when I first saw them online, which is how I found my way to LOHO. I had a feeling the Capri would be “the one” before I ever ever saw it in person—the shape of it was so Grecian and right up my alley, not to mention Matt and I were engaged in Capri, so the name was very serendipitous. As soon as I tried it on at LOHO, I knew that’s what I wanted to walk down the aisle toward Matt in.

Describe your wedding. Where did it take place? What inspiration or themes were you drawn to when planning?

We were married at the Hyatt in Incline Village, Nevada (Lake Tahoe) on the cottage green overlooking the lake. We wanted an aesthetic that felt outdoorsy and natural, but still celebratory and fun.  We chose lots of greenery (mainly eucalyptus) and dark woods to play into Tahoe’s natural beauty, and then added pops of deep wine, pinks and blues to bring the palette to life. Everything was wood—from the invitations to the table signs to the place cards to the farm tables guests dined at. Other than that, we kept décor to a minimum so as not to compete with Tahoe’s natural state. All the venue really needed was floral and lots of candles and it came to life beautifully.

Everything about it was laid-back and summer-y. Our bridal party walked down the aisle to Bob Marley’s “Stir it Up” (played by Brian Hess’ awesome band) and I walked down to The Beatles’ “Here Comes the Sun.”  My bridesmaids wore floral crowns and Free People dresses with chunky J. Crew necklaces.

What made your wedding personal to you and your partner? 

I’m a writer and Matt plays guitar so, in lieu of a guestbook, we had guests leave us a note on a custom typewriter and sign a guitar.  We’re lovers of music (isn’t everyone?), so we danced to “Into the Deep” feat. Macy Gray off of Galactic’s new album.

We travel a lot, so we named each of our tables after a place we’ve been together. We’re both from Nevada, so we wanted some Wild West sprinkled in—I had our florist, Hattie Reed of Art in Bloom Floral, add blue thistle throughout to sort of “roughen up” the pink and wine roses, and we had s’mores over fire pits during the reception.  We also had Mark Twain quotes on our party favors (see below) and our ring bearer walked the rings down on a deer shed our friend found in the Sierras.

Matt’s a hydrologist and always concerned about water conservation and not using plastic, disposable water bottles, so we gave away custom Liberty Bottleworks water bottles as our favors (they’re made in the USA and BPA free)—they were a huge hit. I included a Mark Twain quote and a custom watercolor of Lake Tahoe on them.  

Also, our invitations were a huge hit. I found a shop, Wide Eyes Paper Co, on Etsy that created custom watercolor portraits of both us and the venue and turned them into the coolest invitations I’ve ever seen (if I may say so myself).

Did you have a special moment or one thing that truly made it in a league of its own?

We organized a flashmob to “Uptown Funk” and invited all of our closest friends and family to participate. It turned out to be so much fun and was such a great surprise for the guests who didn’t know about it. It also made for a hell of a night the night before rehearsing in our hotel room until the wee hours.

Any parting wisdom for yet-to-wed LOHO Brides?

I would just say to focus solely on you and your groom/partner. That sounds so simple, but, for me, it was the hardest part of wedding planning/dress shopping. I tend to be very aware of other people (I’m a born hostess), so I want to always make sure everyone in the room is happy and doing OK. That’s a great trait to have for certain circumstances, but your wedding should be about what you and your partner want. I constantly had to remind myself to push other people’s opinions out of the picture when I was planning my wedding. This is the only time in your life when it’s totally kosher to make it all about you. Own that and run with it—just do so with class and kindness. 


Hair/MU: LaDiDa MUA

Floral: Art in Bloom

Photography: Annamae photo

Planning: One Fine Day Events