Photos from Vicky and Aaron's multi-faith wedding at Villa Del Sol D'Oro, a Tuscan-inspired wedding venue that feels like you've been transported from Los Angeles to the Italian countryside. From the getting ready to the Catholic-Jewish garden ceremony and the karate-filled reception, there were gorgeous details and plenty of emotion to document on this special day.
I first connected with Vicky and Aaron last Fall when we chatted during a phone meeting about their wedding at Villa Del Sol D’Oro. They hired me right away and I was excited to finally meet them in person at this Tuscan-inspired private estate wedding venue in Sierra Madre (near Pasadena).
They were planning a multi-faith celebration that incorporated Aaron’s Jewish heritage and Vicky’s Catholic beliefs, with plenty of warm family moments and stunning portrait settings to capture. From leafy walkways to ornate columns and balconies, the Villa Del Sol D’Oro feels like you’ve been instantly transported from Los Angeles to the Italian countryside.
Getting ready photos at Villa Del Sol D’Oro:
The day all began at around 9AM when I met up with my second photographer at the Villa Del Sol D’Oro to document Vicky and Aaron getting ready in separate bridal suites. I was with Vicky, her mom, sisters and nieces as they made their final preparations, with a striking blue wall that served as the perfect backdrop for hanging her wedding dress and capturing candid moments with her loved ones.
I captured up-close shots as she had the final touches applied to her makeup and relaxed with a glass of champagne on the bridal suite balcony, as well as some special moments with her mom and sisters in their floral robes. Once Vicky was dressed, we moved into the light-filled adjacent room to capture classic shots as she secured her earrings and wedding shoes before her sisters and mom joined her to fluff the gorgeous train.
Vicky’s dad then arrived for the father-daughter first look, which we had on the bridal suite balcony. I photographed Vicky walking up to him and his reaction at seeing her looking so radiant, as well as documenting the moment Vicky gave her parents a special letter to read.
While Vicky and Aaron wanted to wait until their wedding ceremony to see one another, they did want to have a “first moment” and exchange booklets with words they’d written for each other. I photographed Vicky as she walked down the sweeping staircase at the Villa Del Sol D’Oro to meet her husband-to-be, then photographed them lovingly touching hands and exchanging books in front of the private estate’s immense hedgerows.
Ceremony photos at Villa Del Sol D’Oro:
After returning to Vicky’s bridal suite for a few last minute adjustments and portraits, it was time for the wedding ceremony to get underway, which was being held on the gorgeous grassy lawns of the Villa Del Sol D’Oro. The couple had decided to incorporate elements of both their Jewish and Catholic faiths, with a Priest and Rabbi joining forces as their officiants.
I photographed Aaron being escorted down the aisle by his parents and the flower girl following close behind before Vicky arrived on the arm of her dad. In addition to the reactions of the bride and groom as they exchanged vows, I also photographed their parents as they proudly watched on during rituals that included the drinking from the goblet and the ring exchange.
Vicky and Aaron were then draped in cords in what is a Catholic wedding tradition and kneeled before the Priest to be blessed before Aaron performed an impressive “breaking of the glass” that showcased his martial arts skills. The couple then made their joyous recessional walk down the aisle and stopped for a spontaneous kiss before enjoying a well-earned drink together at the terraced ceremonial site.
Portraits at Villa Del Sol D’Oro:
While the guests were enjoying cocktail hour, we had plenty of time for portraits of the newlyweds around the stunning grounds of the Villa Del Sol D’Oro. I captured classic embraces on the terraced lawns and incorporating the Tuscan-inspired architecture and staircase of the private estate, as well as getting creative with a low vantage shot and bird’s eye views overlooking their reception venue.
Reception photos at Villa Del Sol D’Oro:
Vicky and Aaron then made their grand entrance into the outdoor reception, which was being held overlooking the private estate’s beautiful gardens. They kicked things off with their first dance, followed by speeches and toasts from those closest to them, which I documented through candid reactions of the couple at their sweetheart table and their parents watching on.
Everyone then moved indoors where Aaron performed the cake-cutting ceremony with a samurai-inspired knife before he and Vicky took turns with their parental dances. The couple was then lifted above the dance floor during the traditional Jewish Horah chair dance as everyone let loose to party.
With the golden hour setting in outside, I snuck out with the couple for a short portrait session to take advantage of this beautiful light. I photographed Vicky leading Aaron along a pathway and the couple kissing in front of the estate’s orange-tinged architecture.
We then headed back indoors for a surprise from Aaron for his bride as he and his martial arts associates performed a special dance. Vicky looked thrilled, to say the least by this powerful display before taking to the dance floor herself with her nephew.
After the bouquet toss and an energetic garter removal by Aaron that included a backflip, I snuck out again with the couple for some romantic nighttime portraits to end what had been an incredible day.
Wedding photos at Villa Del Sol D’Oro:
I can’t thank Vicky and Aaron enough for trusting me to capture their wedding at the Villa Del Sol D’Oro and what was an amazing day spent with family and friends. I’m very excited that they’re off to Peru and Machu Picchu for their honeymoon and wish them all the best in the adventures that life throws their way!