GSS Featured Wedding :: Liz & Nathan’s Botanical Garden Wedding :: Gabriel Harber Photography

Happy Hump Day, Lovelies!!!  Today’s featured wedding comes from Gabriel of Gabriel Harber Photography. He is a Oakland/San Fransisco, California based wedding photographer.  Gabriel has been more than accommodating to GSS on this feature.  Thank you!  Liz and Nathan were married at University of California Botanical Garden at Berkley, California on July 31, 2011.  Liz was kind enough to answer a few questions for us:  (Side Note:  I have to say that Liz has some of the most touching, sincere and wise answers to our questions.  Please make sure that you take the time to reader her answers and not just skip past them while looking at their beautiful images.  They are so worthwhile and insightful!)

How did you and Nathan meet? The old-fashioned way… in a bar on the dance floor! 

How long have you been together? Couple years?  5 maybe? 

How did Nathan propose? On one knee, after making me a perfect cup of coffee and homemade heart-shaped waffles.  He said all sorts of beautiful sweet things that I wish I recorded because I honestly can’t remember them… but there were some happy tears and a loud yes.  And a stunning ring.  I call it my free range rock, since it is a conflict-free diamond from Brilliant Earth.  Hopefully our marriage will be equally conflict-free and we will continue to make choices together that support happiness and health for all people. 

What sold you on your wedding venue? Nathan loves redwoods, and Mather Grove just has this really sacred feel.  We had the ceremony there and the reception at the Claremont Hotel.  We went from rustic nature to old world glamor, but it felt very local and special to us… and was simple for our guests. 

Your dress is gorgeous, where did you get it and how did you know it was “the one”?  The dress is Nicole Miller and it is from an awesome boutique on Park Street called ZOE Couture.  I knew it was the one when it fit and the salesgirl told me it was included in the half off sale!   

What was your “something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue”? I didn’t really do this – I wore my Nana’s crystal necklace – that was old and reminded me of her, which reminds me of love.  But the borrowed item did not fit, and the blue item just did not happen… although I guess my bridesmaids wore blue… I think this was one tradition I just skipped.  I also skipped the bouquet toss – trust me ladies, your single friends really hate that event. 

How did you choose your wedding color palette?  Navy looks good on everyone, and green is fun.  

If you love Liz’s Navy and Green wedding color palette, be sure to check out our Navy and Apple Green Inspiration board!

Do you have any advice for bride and grooms that are in the planning process? Talk to each other about what is important.  This is an expensive event, even if you try to be frugal, and so you want to spend on what matters. For us, we spent money on the photography and the food.  We saved by having it on a Sunday and going with a hotel for the reception… and we saved a lot on flowers and decorations.  I made the favors.  Instead of a rehearsal dinner, we had a street party with a taco truck caterer. Instead of having 150 people, we had around 75 and were able to afford the event we wanted.  I know everyone says this is your day and so do what you want, and that is true, but I also think that you do want to consider the needs and comfort of your guests.  Don’t read too many wedding magazines. You can get some great ideas, but you can also set some unrealistic expectations if you are not careful and start buying wacky stuff. Cute as they are, your guests really don’t need coordinating parasols and flip flops.  They are there to celebrate you!  Feed them well and make sure they have drinks and lots of fun. 

What song did you dance to for your first dance? “Home” by OK Sweetheart, a Texas band.  We saw them live a few years ago at an after show at Austin City Limits and we loved them.  The lyrics are spot on… “where ever you go, I’ll go, knowing one day I’ll be calling it home.”  I moved a lot when I was younger, and I didn’t realize until I fell in love with Nathan that I have not felt “home” for a long, long time.  I have this overwhelming sense of belonging where I am when I am with him. We now have a beautiful home together…and I know we always will, no matter where we go!  

What was your favorite part of your big day? Every single moment was incredible.  Seeing how happy my husband was and how much fun he had was awesome. The toasts by our family and friends were so touching, and everything was just right. 

Venue:  Mather Grove , UC Botanical Garden (ceremony) and The Claremont (reception) 

Dress: Nicole Miller 

Cake: Katrina Rozelle in Oakland, plus a grooms cake from FeelGood Bakery 

Floral: Sarai from the Berkeley Farmer’s Market 

Linens:  The Claremont

Catering: The Claremont 

DJ/Band: The best!!!  DJ Jeremy 

Videographer: No thanks!  Pictures are plenty. 

Invitations/Wedding Stationery: Made my own, bought paper at Target, bought custom stamps from Etsy 

Event Planner: Me!

Photographer: The best!  Gabriel Harber 

Thank you so much, Gabriel, for sharing this amazing wedding with us!  Please stop by Gabriel Harber Photography’s website and show him some love!  And thank you, Liz, for taking your time to answer our questions!  We wish you and Nathan a lifetime full of love, laughter, and happiness!!!  May every day be better than the last!

If you have an engagement, wedding, day after, or anniversary session that you would like featured- Please send it to us at submissions@groomsoldseparately.com.  We HEART submissions!

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  1. [...] far away Texas land the scourers of the internets found my photography and Tamra Dunlap of Groom Sold Separately did a piece on Liz and Nathan’s beautiful Berkeley Botanical / Claremont Hotel [...]

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