From Cecily and Alayna: We were shot with Cupid’s arrow in October 2012. We had both been on the dating website OkCupid.com (Cecily on and off for 5 years, and Alayna for just one night) when Alayna rated Cecily as someone she could potentially be interested in. The rating, unbeknownst to Alayna, prompted an email to Cecily by the site. Cecily immediately emailed Alayna, suggesting they could be a good match and that they should chat sometime. Alayna definitely agreed after looking through Cecily’s profile. After that email, we talked on the phone the next day for three hours, and then we met in person five days later for lunch and a movie. After that first date, we never looked back.
Planning our wedding was truly a labor of love. Early in the planning stages, we decided to DIY as many elements that we could. We also enlisted many of our talented friends to help us make our day special. With the dining room of our tiny one-bedroom apartment as our workshop, we set out to create a truly personalized ceremony and reception. We made the cake platters, centerpieces, and other reception décor. Our friend, Tressi Chun, also assisted us with signs for the ceremony and the card box for the reception.
The wedding colors were coral and navy blue with accents of gold. We both love coral and thought that navy blue would bring a classic element to the wedding. Based on that, we allowed all of the women in the wedding to wear coral dresses of their choosing and the men to wear navy blue suits. We also chose flowers that were varying shades of coral. For our flowers, we asked our friend Adrianna di Bartolo of Femme Flowers to help us. At the crack of dawn on a Saturday about a month before the wedding, Adrianna escorted us to the LA Flower Mart to choose our flowers. While it was overwhelming to see that many flowers in one place, Adrianna helped us figure out what we liked. We love her creations!
We decided to have a first look and photos before the wedding at a nearby park in Pomona. We did not pick out dresses together and leading up to the wedding, kept them stored at Alayna’s brother’s house nearby. We also got ready separately. The first look was our chance to see the dresses and each other all dressed up. Alayna kissed Cecily’s shoulder as she approached, which was a special touch. The first look was very emotional and exciting at the same time.
Our wedding ceremony took place at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Pomona, CA. The Reverend Mark Hallahan presided over the ceremony. It was a joy to work with Fr. Mark to customize our ceremony within the Episcopal wedding ceremony structure.
We decided to walk down the aisle separately, as neither of our parents were in attendance. Alayna’s parents are involved in our lives and are very loving but made the decision not to attend the wedding, which is a decision that we respect. Cecily’s parents have struggled immensely since she came out at the end of 2012. Alayna walked down the aisle first, with our nephew Ahn (our “wedding crier”) following carrying a sign that said “Aunt Alayna Here Comes Your Girl.” Alayna walked down the aisle to “I Can’t Help Falling In Love” by Ingrid Michaelson. Cecily followed Ahn down the aisle with “A Couple of Forevers” by Chrisette Michele playing. The songs are meaningful to us and show our individual style. After the ceremony, we walked out of the church to “Isn’t She Lovely” by Stevie Wonder. It was such an upbeat, joyous song that was perfect to help us celebrate being married!
The reception took place at Villa Tepeyac in West Covina, CA. It is a Mexican restaurant so our menu included chile verde, steak picado, rice, beans, and tortillas. We also served a variety of wine (Be Mine Wines), Mexican beers (I Do Brews), and margaritas (Marry-Me-Gritas). We wanted the reception to be a giant party and that is exactly what we had. We enjoyed every moment on the dance floor. Our friend Michaela is a DJ in Los Angeles and did us the honor of DJ’ing our wedding. She mixed in our favorites with other crowd pleasers and kept the party going!
Photos courtesy of Splashes of Time photography.