Outdoor Interfaith Wedding Ceremony & Elegant Terrace Reception

Brooke Hughes and Josh Feinerman

Photographed by: Fitz Carlile PhotographyLocation: Dana Point, California, United States

After completing her PhD in Los Angeles, Brooke Hughes decided to move to Seattle after the idea came to her in a dream. “Although it felt like a major step of faith to walk away from my life in LA, it also felt like the correct decision. I feel so thankful I listened to that dream,” Brooke smiles. As her belongings were being moved to Washington, she visited her mother in Palm Springs. While there, she met her mom’s friend – the mother of Josh Feinerman – who told Brooke she had a son she should meet when she got to Seattle. “While I would typically be hesitant to follow any parental dating instructions, it was clear that Brooke was beautiful and intelligent, so I decided to invite her to meet up for drinks once she got settled,” Josh shares. Brooke muses: “Lucky for us, that quick happy hour turned into a three-hour date that we didn't want to end. We both left knowing this was something special... The year that followed was a whirlwind romance full of fun, laughter, adventure, love, and growing closer together in our relationship.” 

When the time came to start planning their nuptials, Brooke and Josh worked together closely. “Brooke and I did a good job of making sure that each part of the day represented elements of both of us and our relationship together,” confirms the groom. On the Wednesday before their Saturday wedding, they decided to share a pre-wedding moment at the famous Wayfarer Chapel together, along with a harpist, their officiants, and their photographer Fitz Carlile. They recited letters they had written for one another as well as 12 personal vows, which were incorporated into the Saturday service. “This became such a special, scared, and holy time that we will both cherish forever,” affirms the bride of the private moment. 

Once the big day arrived, guests found their seats atop translucent chairs arranged in the round for the unplugged ceremony. Brooke walked down the aisle on the arms of her mother and brother, clutching a hand-tied bouquet of florals, as well as an heirloom locket with photos of the couple’s late grandparents. She met her beloved beneath a stunning acrylic chuppah showcasing lush white blooms and greenery designed by Flowers by Cina

The ceremony featured both Jewish and Christian traditions. “Our rabbi and pastor did a beautiful job of weaving everything together, along with excerpts from our personal vows and the use of various family heirlooms,” notes the groom of his grandfather’s prayer shawl and kiddush cup. After they were pronounced husband and wife, the newlyweds recessed to “All You Need Is Love” by The Beatles as attendees tossed rose petals Brooke had saved from arrangements Josh had given her during their time together – “our first dates, engagement roses, and all the days in between,” she adds. “Seeing the faces of all our loved ones during the ceremony being so happy for us truly made me cry. It was such an honor and so special to have everyone choose to be there to help celebrate.” 

Guests eyes were drawn upwards as they made their way onto the terrace for the open-air reception. The space was beautifully draped in swagged ivory chiffon with geometric gilt chandeliers adorned with foliage and wisteria overhead. Tables showcased either golden candelabra and a trio of ivory flower arrangements or tall centerpieces comprised of ranunculuses, peonies, and garden roses with accents of phalaenopsis orchids and lush verdure including Italian ruscus, lemon leaves, huckleberries, and eucalyptuses. Gold geometric terrariums were filled with loose florals and greenery, and floating candles and metallic votives added to the romantic ambience. In lieu of charger plates, place settings featured a tropical Monstera leaf with each guest’s name in gilt hand lettering, which complemented the bullion-hued flatware. 

Throughout the evening, attendees enjoyed sentimental speeches, and their taste buds were tantalized with slices of a five-layer cake – each tier offering a different flavor – as well as selections from a surprise food truck at the end of the evening. As wedding favors, attendees took home images from the photo booth and also received a special gift card they could use to donate to a charity of their choice. 

Attendees of all ages spent the rest of the night on the dance floor. “It was an epic party!” affirms the groom. In fact, Brooke and Josh agree that one of their favorite moments was at the reception surrounded by their guests. “We reminded one another to stop, look around, and truly take it in,” explains the bride. “We both laughed and cried at seeing the delight on our friends’ and families’ faces as they danced with their loved ones and we got to see them each so happy, lost in the moment with joy. That truly was such a gift for us.”