When a friend invited Katrina Hodgson to a movie night get-together hosted by Brian Scott, she had no idea she would meet the man of her dreams. “At the end of the evening, Brian picked up a guitar and sang to all of us. I fell in love right then and there,” remembers the co-founder of fitness-and-lifestyle community ToneItUp.com and star of Bravo’s Toned Up. As years passed and their love grew, Brian asked Katrina’s father and older brother for their blessings before surprising his bride with a light-yellow canary diamond engagement ring on their annual summer vacation to her family’s lake house.
When the time came for the couple to begin planning their nuptials, they designed an event that would truly celebrate their many years of love, as well as commemorate the loved ones who helped shape who they are today. “Our ten-year anniversary celebration was our wedding, so we wanted it to be special and feel like us,” shares Katrina. The first step in doing so was to host a rehearsal “beach day,” in lieu of a traditional rehearsal dinner. “Rather than a formal dinner, we invited our closest family and friends for a relaxing Malibu beach day at one of Marilyn Monroe’s favorite private beaches,” explains the groom.
The following day, the bride and her bridesmaids prepared for the ceremony on the lawn of a bluff overlooking the ocean. Romantic furniture, including a vanity and plush antique seating upholstered with dusty-pink silks, brought the bridal suite to the beach. Katrina wore an elegant strapless trumpet gown with a sweetheart neckline; her long hair was styled in her famous beachy waves and pulled away from her face on one side with a single, light pink Café au Lait dahlia. Bridesmaids were dressed in long, mismatched gowns in hues of seafoam green or sky blue; their tresses also styled in long, loose curls.
Meanwhile, guests enjoyed light refreshments from the “lemonade stand” before making their way to the charming ceremony seating. “We wanted our ceremony and reception décor to be a reflection of our home,” begins Katrina. “We have a beachy-antique style and love soft hues of greens and corals,” which blended seamlessly with their vision for the seaside nuptials. Some décor elements, including trinkets and photos, were borrowed from the couple’s home, and other items, such as chaises and chairs, were purchased from antique fairs and implemented into their home décor after the wedding.
Once guests found their seats, attendants walked down the lace-and-burlap aisle runner to reach the altar, which was built by the groom. Bridesmaids carried bouquets featuring Juliet garden roses and Café au Lait dahlias in shades of light pink with dusty miller accents; each was tied with lace from the wedding dress of Katrina’s paternal grandmother, who at age 91 attended the wedding. Groomsmen were casual in rolled-up slacks and white button-down shirts, and Brian donned a three-piece khaki suit with a tie the shade of sea glass; boutonnieres featured ivory blossoms, verdure, and were also tied with grandma’s lace.
“One of my most memorable moments was listening to Brian’s vows… He read a letter he wrote me ten years ago!” confides the bride. Following the picturesque ceremony, Katrina and Brian took a moment alone together before joining loved ones at a nearby vineyard for an alfresco reception. “It was the only time during our entire wedding day that we were alone,” explains Katrina of their drive to the venue in a bright yellow 1973 Volkswagen Thing – her wedding gift from the groom. “We were really happy we took the time to do that… and get lost for 20 minutes – so us!”
As wedding attendees entered the reception space, a table of wedding photos from both families welcomed them. “We wanted everyone to witness why we’re here, what brought us together, and who taught us to love,” says the bride. Dinner seating was modeled after the couple’s dining room at home: Farm-style wooden tables decorated with lace-and-burlap runners made by Katrina’s mother were topped with vintage ceramic centerpieces filled with hydrangeas, garden roses, Café au Lait dahlias, and Sahara roses in peaches and creams, as well as touches of Queen Anne’s lace and dusty miller.
After enjoying dinner selections from the buffet-style feast, guests discovered a dessert table that featured a wedding cake from Katrina and Brian’s favorite local creamery, which they often visit on date nights. As the sun began to set, the newlyweds enjoyed their first dance and a band performed a playlist throughout the night that was perfect for all ages. “Our first dance was the first time I cried. I realized everyone we loved was in one place,” recalls the bride.
She urges other couples to enjoy the planning process together since a wedding only happens once: “Make it a date night! Grab a bottle of wine and put together song lists, choose napkin colors, and do whatever it is that you need to check off the list.” The groom, who was also very involved in wedding preparation, credits the success of their event with the planning they accomplished as a team: “We’re so happy we made our wedding feel like us.”