Bride & Groom: Jacqueline Straughan (Jax) & Erik Meiselman
Wedding Date: July 18, 2015
Venue: Culver Hotel, Culver City, CA
Number of Guests: 65+
When a professional ballet dancer and her film-industry beau get married, you just know the whole bash is going to be glamorous. With clever nods to old Hollywood, lots and lots of Art Deco details and a professionally-choreographed first dance, this wedding sure was a stunner.
Jacqueline and Erik's story starts in an unexpected place: The set of a TV show. He worked on the production staff of Breaking Pointe, a docudrama on The CW centered around soloist Jacqueline's ballet company at the time, Ballet West. When the show wrapped, their romance started.
Three years later, they decided to make it official at the Culver Hotel, letting its Hollywood history and period architecture inspire the vibe of the wedding. "The Crystal Dining Room with its black and white checkered floor, dark paneling and stunning chandeliers perfectly accented the touches of Art Deco design that I had blended into the invitations, bridal accessories and overall neutral metallic color palette," Jacqueline told us.
When they'd learned the cast of The Wizard of Oz called the Culver Hotel home during filming, the couple decided to have the film playing silently in the reception lounge. "I loved that I could incorporate the beauty of my husband's connection to Hollywood with our theme, too."
And yet, the kicker of the whole night might be their first dance, choreographed by a ballerina-turned-ballroom-dancer friend and danced flawlessly in a stunning red number formerly owned by a Dancing With the Stars pro.
I'll let Jacqueline—and these incredible photos from Aurelia D'Amore Photography—take it from here.
How did you meet?
Erik and I met in 2012 while filming Breaking Pointe, a docudrama reality show based on Ballet West that aired on the CW Network for two seasons in Salt Lake City, UT. At the time, I was part of the cast as a Soloist with the ballet company and he was part of the production crew as the Sound Supervisor. We started seeing each other after the filming of the first season and were married just over three years later. Breaking Pointe literally set the stage for our love story!
How would you describe your wedding style?
The Culver Hotel is a rare gem where "vintage glamour meets modern chic." The hotel's design sharpened my wedding vision and set the tone, palette, and style for our ceremony, cocktail party and reception.
What was your favorite wedding detail?
I have 2 favorite things! Number 1: The vows I wrote sit framed in a small square crystal-studded Art Deco frame on my husband's nightstand. It is such a meaningful yet stylish keepsake because writing my own vows was the one request Erik made of me for our wedding. Erik will always have my heart, but now he also has my words too.
And number 2: The act of receiving flowers has a special significance to performers, so flowers were a big consideration in my wedding budget. My florist created the most dreamy bouquets for myself and maid of honor, of blushing bride proteas, dahlias, peonies, ranunculus and varieties of succulents. I was so obsessed I took the bouquets on our mini-moon and then actually propagated the succulents once we returned home! Watching our "love" grow everyday is heart warming and super cheesy all at the same time.
What was totally you about your wedding?
It was pure fun creating and rehearsing our wedding dance, which very quickly turned into a serious performance by 007 and Tiffany Case! I asked a former ballerina friend turned professional ballroom dancer to choreograph a short piece for us to Shirley Bassey's Diamonds Are Forever. The low backed tassel heavy fire engine red dress I borrowed, that was a second hand purchase from a Dancing with the Stars ballroom professional, outfitted me like a perfect Bond Girl. We were thrilled to dance for our friends and family and intentionally did not record the performance. It made it extra special because our first dance together was a once in a lifetime event, because diamonds are forever. Mission accomplished!
What was your most worthwhile splurge?
Erik admits that my rings were the most worthwhile splurge for us because I'm over the moon about the rings he let me choose! I've always been into jewelry but I get to wear these stunning unique rings everyday and am reminded of our commitment to each other.
What is your proudest DIY wedding project?
It wasn't in our budget to rent a fancy photo booth so I got creative. We purchased a wedding-themed photo booth app for our iPad, an iPad holder for the tripod and rented pipe and drape for the evening. I hand painted several vintage Hollywood themed props from Michaels, but also sourced many from my husband and his production friends. All told we spent less than $60 and were able to capture the more silly moments from our day.
What is your best advice for anyone planning a wedding?
Consider the honeymoon part of the wedding experience and go to your dream destination! Instead of asking for things, Erik and I created a simple website where our guests could contribute money to send us on adventures during our honeymoon. It was exciting to tie our rehearsal dinner theme to our honeymoon destination, but our 3 weeks in Thailand, Vietnam and Cambodia were beyond incredible, thanks to our guests, and exactly how we wanted to start our life together.
Thanks, Jacqueline and Erik!
- Photographer: Aurelia D'Amore Photography
- Floral Designer: Arrange Floral
- Cake Designer: Sheila Mae
Reception Venue: The Culver Hotel
Submitted via Two Bright Lights