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In-N-Out, Pizza, and a Wedding Dog: This LA Wedding Has It All

Including love from a long-haired dachshund (!!!)

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Chelsea, screenwriter and social media manager & dan, editor

Sum-up of the wedding vibe: California casual with In-N-Out, Ghostbusters, and dachshunds

Planned budget: $10,000

Actual budget: $25,000

Number of guests: 80

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Where we allocated the most funds:

Venue and food, definitely. We had booked an event space that came with a planner, and after months of poor communication and mixed messages, they told us that they had lost their lease! This left us without a venue, or coordinator the day after we sent our invitations out and meant we had to re-plan the entire wedding with three months to go—new date, new venue, new everything. This “surprise” definitely raised the cost.

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Where we allocated the least funds:

Decor, definitely: our venue, The Ruby Street, came fully furnished and decorated. Chelsea’s mom Rosalyn (a crafting whiz) handmade all the table runners, centerpieces, bouquets, and boutonnières with silk flowers. Her sister Carley baked the wedding cake and cupcakes. We’re not crafty, but luckily we’ve got friends and family who can spin gold out of straw!

Also, my dress was dope as hell and cost $300. I got it downtown in the fashion district, and I loved loved loved it.

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What was totally worth it:

It was more than we wanted to spend, but we were really blown away by our venue. It was beautiful, but most importantly, it was us: sweet, silly, and warm. Also worth it was our planner, Holly Gray! With three months to go and zero idea what we were doing, Holly whipped us into shape and took care of every detail. For a couple who both work full-time, neither of us had the skills or knowledge of what we needed to make this thing happen, and we could not have done it without Holly.

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What was totally not worth it:

We rented some space heaters for the dinner outdoors, but we ended up not needing them because the night was warm and perfect.

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A few things that helped us along the way:

We surrounded ourselves with good people: Holly; our photographer, Amy; and all the other vendors were kind and supportive. They helped to make our wedding happen. Work with people that get you as a couple and understand what you’re going for.

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My best practical advice for my planning self:

Remember to laugh! There were countless nights where Dan and I were exhausted and ready to bail, but we stuck together and kept each other laughing. Also, don’t try to please other people: this is your wedding, and you can celebrate it however you choose to. If folks don’t like it, then that’s their problem! Or as Dan so eloquently put it, “Anyone who doesn’t like it can suck a sharp poisoned dick!” (But I don’t think a blog is going to print that.) (Editor’s note: Surprise! We did.)

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Favorite thing about the wedding:

I loved our vows and ceremony: my best friend Rachel officiated, and we filled the ceremony with jokes and silliness. Walking back down the aisle to the Ghostbusters theme played on violin was so quintessentially us. We wanted a big bad party, and we got it! I still have friends and family telling me it was the most fun wedding they’ve ever been to!

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