The white Spanish Colonial Revival building, surrounded by palm trees, that stands at the corner of Anacapa and East Figueroa in Santa Barbara looks less like a county courthouse and more like a cross between a villa and a resort lifted from the sunny shores of Barcelona. Inside this 1920s building, well known for its red tile roof and impressive bell tower, the laughter, tears and jubilant cheers of family and friends regularly dance down corridors and bounce off the walls during weddings for which the term “courthouse wedding,” though accurate, seems wildly insufficient. Here, I captured the unmatched joy of a bride and groom becoming one.
After a tearful first look, during which gifts were exchanged as grinning family members and friends watched, the guests filed into the Courthouse’s Mural Room. In the room that gets its name from the stunning floor to ceiling paintings depicting the history of Santa Barbara, professed their personalized vows while tissues were passed between the onlookers. This intimate courthouse wedding was filled with all of the elation, emotion and significance of the largest, most decadent wedding imaginable.
After the ceremony, as we paced the stone-floored halls taking bridal portraits, it seemed that around every corner we found a unique and gorgeous nook for photos. In the dim lighting, the bride positively glowed, radiant with a joy and light that reflected off the face of her new husband.
The celebration continued just a short walk away at The Wine Cask. While the youngest guests entertained themselves with crayons on wedding-themed coloring pages (that the bride put together for her guests!), I couldn’t get enough of all of the memories relived and stories shared. My favorite little details were the favor bags handmade by the bride containing a sweet treat for a midnight snack! I grinned and laughed along with the jubilant party of close friends and family as they toasted to long love and a beautiful new life for the happy couple.
Check out a few of my favorite photos from this Santa Barbara elopement below!