Presenting Charlie Brear’s #FridayBridE CAROLYN

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Carolyn & Mark's wedding day looked straight out of a film thanks to a chance snow shower in June. Their non-stop wedding weekend featured social activities including a 5K run, sailing on the lake, private yoga class, hiking in snow, watching the Warriors game, and drinks at Jake's. But the fun didn't stop there... the cherry on top of the cake was a Bruno Mars "Marry You" flash mob led by their close friend, Jeff.

 Our all-american bride was a dream in our Torum dress & lace overskirt.

Carolyn & Mark's wedding was captured by Shaunte Dittmar and their Videographer was Dax Victornio. Their wedding was planned by Lindsay Townsend from Cloud Nine Event Company.

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Describe the style of your wedding

Lakeside chic

When and where did your partner propose to you?

Mark proposed in August 2016 in the backyard of our Cape Cod cottage 5 days after we completed an Ironman triathlon together. It was personal, romantic, and just the two of us..

Which dress did you choose and why? And where did you buy it from?

I chose the Torum dress with a lace overlay skirt. I really wanted a classic style that was comfortable and also fit in with the laid back Lake Tahoe vibe. I also wanted either a bow or lace, and I ended up with both! I bought the dress near my hometown at Alessandra Bridal in Birmingham, Michigan (Now Bisou Bridal).

How was your experience shopping for your wedding dress? ( was it easy, was it memorable, was it fun?, was the decision tough?)

Super fun with my mom and one of my best friends, and the decision was really easy. It was the second dress I tried on, and I fell in love with the low back, the chic silhouette and lace. The saleswoman recommended adding a bow that tied in the back which I thought was a great idea, and really completed the look. We popped the bubbly and were in and out in about 90 minutes!


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What would your advice be to other brides shopping for a wedding dress?

Start a board on Pinterest for your dream wedding dress. It'll help determine your style, and you'll notice a theme. Also, don't let anyone else convince you to buy one dress over another - this is your day, your style and your decision. Have your shopping companions provide their opinion and advice, but stay true to yourself. And bring a bottle of champagne to celebrate!

How did you feel after you had ordered your dress?

I felt so relieved! I couldn't wait for the big day!

What shoes did you wear?

I wore custom white shoes from Shoes of Prey with a peep-toe and mid-heel. I had the date of our wedding printed in the in-sole.

Did you struggle finding the right lingerie that worked with your dress, if so would you recommend anything for future brides?

Yes, I had to try a few different options, especially with the low back (needed a backless bra) and the silk (no wires or lines!). I'm glad I bought everything early enough so I could have my undergarments ready for both of my dress fittings at the tailor.


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Who did your hair & make-up and how did you find them?

Jill from a local hair salon called RAH Studio in Lake Tahoe. I found them through my wedding planner. They were fabulous! Jill did my hair and makeup for both the rehearsal dinner and the wedding, and we did two distinct looks just to change things up a bit. I chose to have my hair up so I could show off the open back as much as possible. And I went with natural makeup to align with the simple chic look I was after - nothing too over-the-top.

Where and when did you get married?

West Shore Cafe in Lake Tahoe, California on June 11, 2017. We got married on a Sunday evening which was more budget-friendly than Saturday, and gave us a chance to host social activities all weekend leading up to the Grand Finale.

How did you feel walking down the aisle?

Beautiful, confident, and COLD! Even though it was June, it snowed all day during our wedding. It was so magical!

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What traditions did you follow? (Think something old, new, borrowed and blue.)

Something borrowed -- I wore my mom's veil from 40 years ago.
Something blue -- my engagement ring has two sapphires
Something old -- I wore my grandmother's ring on my right hand
Something new -- my dress and shoes!

Did your wedding have any quirky or unusual features?

We did a flash mob dance to Bruno Mars - Marry You! Our good friend, Jeff Wong, choreographed it, and even got our parents to do it! So much fun. I'd also say the snow in June was pretty unusual.

What was the funniest moment of the day?

When my Dad brought my Mom up to join her at the end of his Father of the Bride Speech. And he said "OK, before we toast. Susie, are you ready? 1..2...3!" And they jumped high in the air (my husband and I do a lot of jumping shots). It was hilarious!

Who took your wedding pictures?

Shaunte Dittmar. She and her team were a dream come true. They stood on the bars and ducked down low to get the best shots. Shaunte also did our engagement photos which turned out so beautifully. It was a no-brainer to hire her for our wedding. We LOVE our photos!

If you could do it all again, would you do anything differently?

Not a thing. Things turned out almost exactly how we planned it. And the things that didn't go as planned, we quickly had a backup option in place. By the time wedding week came along we just rolled with it.

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What will you do with your dress now?

I had it restored by a local cleaner and have it stored under my bed with a bed sheet wrapped around the box. I plan to wear it again if we go to a fancy gala or white party. If I wear it without the lace skirt and bow it's a brand new look!

What are you and your husband's best memories of the day?

1. Having our first look in the snowfall. It was absolutely beautiful. The high was supposed to be 65-70 degrees, but a storm came through and the high on wedding day was 33 and it snowed all day! So much fun.
2) Finally saying "I do" after a ceremony filled with love and laughter. Our good friend, John, officiated the wedding.
3) The Bruno Mars "Marry You" flash mob led by our good friend, Jeff. He even got our families in on it!
4) Social activities all weekend including a 5K run, sailing on the lake, private yoga class, hiking in snow, watching the Warriors game, and drinks at Jake's
5) Generally seeing our parents tear up the dance floor with everyone
6) "By the power vested in me by the Internet" - John
7) "Can I kiss you now"?! during the ceremony after Mark and I wanted to kiss each other at different points during the wedding. Once we finally kissed the crowd went wild!



1. There will be people who won't make it to your wedding. People who you'd think would be there no matter what. Some people may even cancel at the last minute. Just remember, you have to express gratitude and appreciation for the people who *do* come. And know that those who can't make it will make it up to you. Everyone's lives are busy, some have limited budgets, and not everyone can be everywhere. Have fun with the friends and family who ARE there to support your perfect day.

2. Nothing new on wedding day! This is something we know as triathletes, "nothing new on race day" but it applies here, too. Get a hair and makeup trial, break in your shoes, try your dress on with all accessories at least 3 times, do a trial spray tan if you go that route, experiment early with false lashes, start a skin care regimen early (not right before the wedding!), get your hair color right early, and don't even think about starving yourself on wedding day!

3. Hire a wedding planner. This was the best money we spent for our whole wedding. Lindsay from Cloud Nine Event Company kept us on track, kept us super organized, helped us select our amazing vendors, and helped navigate through last-minute snafus. Worth every penny!

4. Outsource as much as you possibly can if you have a busy schedule, and if you're not much of a DIYer. We outsourced a lot of the details to Etsy and Minted. And I had my parents help stuff welcome bags for us. People like to help, so don't be afraid to delegate!

5. Try to plan at least one social activity before the wedding for your guests. It'll make the wedding more fun because people will get to know each other!


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Reception & Ceremony Venue|  West Shore Cafe & Inn

Photographer | Shaunte Dittmar. Videographer: Dax Victornio. Wedding Planner: Lindsay Townsend from Cloud Nine Event Company.

Shoes & Accessories |Shoes of Prey. Veil from my mom. Earrings and bracelet from Swarovski. Necklace was a gift from my grandma.

Bridesmaids' dresses | Designer was Bill Levkoff. Purchased at Bella Bridesmaids in San Francisco, CA.

Rings | Wedding Rings from a local jewelry store in San Francisco. Engagement ring from Blue Nile.

Florist | Thran's in Lake Tahoe

Entertainment | Derek from Lake DJ

Cake Supplier|West Shore Cafe & In

Hair | RAH Studio

Make-up | RAH Studio

Transportation | Northstar Transportation