13 Outside-The-Box Wedding Ideas To Book STAT

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[UPDATE: This story was originally published on January 11.]

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Is it just us, or is everyone in full-on wedding-planning mode for the upcoming nuptial season? If we have to hear about one more Christmas proposal…Okay, deep breath. If you're the one getting hitched and feeling overwhelmed, no need for Bridezilla-behavior — we’re right on top of it, Rose. We’ve cherry-picked some stellar wedding ideas that are super unique, and will make for one memorable affair. From thought-provoking venues to edgy alternatives to wedding cakes, we’ve got something that all soon-to-be brides (with every kind of budget) will want to book ASAP.

Photos from left: Photographed by Ashley Rose; Courtesy of Pink Cloud Events and The Fry Girl/Next Exit Photography.

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THE VENUE:
The venue might be the hardest thing to figure out, but when you’ve finally picked a place, it feels oh-so-good.

Hotel Figueroa: This historical Downtown hotel is the perfect locale for a fun, laid-back reception. Plus, the awe-worthy décor and ambiance makes you feel like you’re in Morocco.
Hotel Figueroa, 939 South Figueroa Street (at 9th Street); 213-280-4664.

Smogshoppe: This is L.A.’s greenest oasis and also the coolest place to book your wedding party. The space is 100% solar-powered and the courtyard is a haven for desert plants, vertical gardens, and plenty of vintage furnishings. We’re swooning just thinking about an intimate post-nuptial dinner party at this spot.
SmogShoppe, 2651 South La Cienga Boulevard (at Cullet Street); 310-837-3610.

Photo: Courtesy of Figueroa Hotel.

Smilebooth-NYE-Wedding

THE PHOTOBOOTH:
Smilebooth: What’s not to love about a fresh rendition of the classic old-school photobooth? Smilebooth is a self-functioning booth that takes the guesswork out of professional photos for your big day. This party favorite encourages the kind of hot mess of fun and spontaneity that’s to be expected at weddings.
Smilebooth, 917-727-1509.

THE PHOTOGRAPHER:
Aaron Feldman Of True Photography Weddings: Finding the right wedding photog is up there with finding your dream dress. You want someone who will capture the day to a T and snap photos that you’ll love even more each time you look at them, and Aaron is your man. He and his team of pros promise to deliver certified-awesome pics to love and cherish.
True Photography Wedding, 310-591-9322.

THE WEDDING VIDEO MAESTROS:
Shark Pig: The talented folks over at Shark Pig have a real knack for capturing all the best parts of a wedding and then putting it to a beat that has us dancing in our chairs (seriously, we can’t stop). Plus, we’re pretty confident that you’ll melt over each of these vid masterpieces.
Shark Pig, 323-300-6503.

Photo: Courtesy of Smilebooth.
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THE VEGAN CATERER:
Whoa Nelly! Caterers: If you’re a soon-to-be missus that’s of the vegetarian/vegan variety, you’ve probably been stressing about a menu that everyone will agree on. Cue the supremely-talented ladies behind Whoa Nelly that have created a drool-inducing vegan menu that even the biggest carnivore will devour. The boutique catering duo creates their menus based on local and seasonal market menus — meaning deliciousness overload.
Whoa Nelly! Caterers, 323-825-1982.

rings

THE NOT-YOUR-AVERAGE RING:
We don’t know about you, but we’re so over those run-of-the-mill wedding rings. If you’re pining for something more outside the (ring) box, then go for an off-kilter (but equally awesome) one like a cocktail ring or sapphire bad boy that’ll have the entire Kardashian clan drooling.

From left: Diamond In The Rough Classic Ring Featuring Rough Diamond Accented with Micro Pave Diamonds and Diamond In The Rough "Embrace" Ring Featuring Rough Diamond Accented With Micro Pave Diamonds, both rings priced upon request, available at Neiman Marcus, 9700 Wilshire Boulevard (at Roxbury Drive); 310-550-5900.

Photos: Courtesy of Whoa Nelly! Caterers and D'Orazio & Associates.
Mini donuts with sugar Next Exit Photography

AWESOME ALTERNATIVES TO CAKE:
Wedding cake isn’t for everyone. Nowadays more receptions are going the anything-but-cake route and here are two equally delicious alternatives:

The Fry Girl: There’s no doubt that these absurdly delicious mini-donuts will be a bonafide hit. The Fry Girl also does mini churros (!!!), funnel cake, fried Oreos – pretty much anything that’s crunchy and yummy.
The Fry Girl, 213-590-1710.

Sweet Lucie’s Ice Cream And Treats: Served out of a vintage Italian ice-cream cart, Sweet Lucie’s scoops some of the finest organic ice cream and toppings in SoCal (and in recyclable cups and spoons!). Guests will love the delectable flavors, and they’ll even custom-make an ice cream or sorbet flavor for you. Yum!
Sweet Lucie’s Ice Cream, 310-245-8242.


PinkCloudWedding

THE DIY PROS:
Pink Cloud: This event-planning agency isn’t about telling you how to do things, but rather helping you do what YOU want to do. They take a hybrid approach to planning by providing access to their online planning tools and onsite day of coordinators for less than $1,000. They’re also available anytime to put out fires or give you a little expert guidance via skype, IM, phone, text for $25 for every 15 minutes. FYI: Brides who sign up now before they go live will get a free 15 minute session of A-list planning support. Steal!

Photos: Courtesy of The Fry Girl/Next Exit Photography and Pink Cloud.
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THE TUNES:
Sticky Fingers: This Rolling Stones cover band is no joke and will have you dancing non-stop to all your fave tunes by the Stones. If that doesn’t sound like the best time EVER, well, we just don’t know.

Flamenco Guitar by Dennis Bergstrom: What’s not to love about getting serenaded by a Spanish guitar? Dennis Bergstrom is a classically trained guitarist and this will be the perfect way to start the ceremony.
Dennis Bergstrom, 858-232-5572.

holly-flora-slide

THE SUCCULENT FLORIST:
Holly Flora: Why not try succulents instead of florals as the centerpiece and bouquet? It’s a fresh alternative and only in SoCal can you get away with it. We love what inventive bride Sabrina Alashi did with these cigar boxes at a Pink Cloud affair, and it definitely got us pondering a new DIY (she actually schlepped all of them from Florida!). If you're not as handy — we don't blame you— Holly Flora is your main squeeze to recreate these!
Holly Flora, 310-559-5705.

Photos: Courtesy of Sticky Fingers and Pink Cloud.