news + press :: may’s meeting at lomas santa fe country club

We traveled up to North County for May’s Weddings of Distinction luncheon, and Lomas Santa Fe Country Club was gracious enough to host our meeting.

The space was beautifully decorated, thanks to Lois Mathews Design for the floral arrangements, and guests were able to mix and mingle while enjoying coffee and tea.

During the delicious meal of steak salad, and an amazing chocolate ravioli dessert, we heard from some of our newest members, Manchester Grand Hyatt, Diane D’Angelo, and La Jolla Cove Suites.  We also heard from seasoned WOD member, Pink Star Design, who brought in some amazingly creative invitation samples.

We also had a very special guest, Dina, Owner/Publisher San Diego Style Weddings, attend, and she spoke to the group about special incentives for advertising for the upcoming season.

It was a wonderful afternoon, as usual, and a great opportunity to welcome our new members and network with our old!

Photos courtesy of Betwixt Studio

Weddings of Distinction

Photos courtesy of Betwixt Studio

european garden wedding :: styled shoot that will make your heart melt

 European garden inspiration

Recently, two of our amazing San Diego wedding vendors, Lois Mathews Design Florals + Kristina Chartier Photography, partnered up to capture some of the most elegant and adorable images of a lovely European garden wedding.  The details are exquisite, the colors are vibrant, and the models (dog included) make us happy.

Details + design: antique lace, paired with French and English collectibles creates a scene with the most romantic touch.  Everything old; nothing new; and the result was a look borrowed straight from Great Grandma’s house.  Nothing matched, and each item on its own has a story and identity, but, together, all the beautiful, mix-matched items (old crystal with porcelain, pottery pitchers and even brass and silver pieces) came together perfectly.

Florals: they were a masterpiece!  Lois Mathews Design made up of lovely garden flowers in shades of blue and purple with a hint of blush, the floral designs truly outdid themselves!  Flowers included: hydrangeas in all shades of blue and antique, delphinium, stock, blue eryngium, blue viburnium berries, blue clamatus, kiwi branches and garden roses.  Together, the combination created this beautiful natural setting.

Florals and Wedding Design: Lois Mathews Design  |  Photography: Kristina Chartier Photography

Make-up & Hair: Samantha Muleady
Dress: The White Flower Bridal Boutique

styled inspiration :: bachelorette spa party

Who doesn’t love going to the spa?  Facials, massages, pedicures and manicures: it all is so relaxing, and a trip to your local spa is a popular choice for brides looking to treat her bridesmaids/bridal party.

Recently, two of our San Diego wedding vendors, Studio Carre’ Photographie and Pink Star Design partnered up with others in the industry to showcase design inspiration at its finest.

For this shoot, which was recently featured on the Exquisite Weddings|Bridal Suite blog, no detail was left unturned.  Perfectly decorated treats, intricate detail invitation design, and a glamorous salon all contributed to the perfect backdrop for this styled shoot.

There are so many ways to celebrate with your girlfriends before the wedding, and while the typical bar-hoping bachelorette party is still an option, sometimes keeping it low-key is best for some brides.  The Bachelorette Spa Party styled shoot gives you an idea of one way in which to pamper those closest to you.

When you combine pampering with sweets and the company of those closest to you, that day can be just what the doctor ordered!

styled shoot



1.  Design, PR, & Sweets:  Sara Mckenzie Creative
2.  Photography:  Studio Carre
3.  Paper:  Pink Star Designs
4.  Beauty Bar:  Leu Leu Beauty Bar
5.  Makeup:  Melissa Rae & Co & Blush Makeup
6.  Hair:  Leu Leu Beauty Bar
7.  Floral:  I Do Weddings
8.  Rentals:  Farm Tables & More
9.  Styling:  Janet Hamada of Double Take Solana BeachModerne
10.  Jewelry: Stella & Dot
11.  Models:  Traelee, Melissa, Atalanta, Tiffany, & Courtne

member spotlight :: stone catering co.


We’re no arrogant bastards, but for this month’s new member spotlight, arrogance and bastardy are commonplace.  Well, not really, but this special wedding vendor is also special in that it boasts creation of one of the most popular beers in southern California today, Arrogant Bastard.  So popular that this beer has it’s own Facebook page!

Perhaps needless to say, Stone Brewing Co., an iconic figure in San Diego’s beer and food scene. So, when the catering division of this popular restaurant and beer-maker joined Weddings of Distinction, we were extremely honored.   I spoke with Susan Holmes, Catering Sales Manager for Stone Brewing Co., and I got some insight into how this successful business caters to the wedding industry, pun intended.


How did you start with Stone Brewing Co.?

I was working for another catering company, and had been for a number of years.  Then, one day I was on the NACE website looking at their new member list.  I saw the name of someone I had worked with years ago, and he was working for Stone. We connected then, and when he called me to help implement Stone’s catering department, I was eager to go.  Stone Brewing Co. is a respected business, and of course, people love the Stone product, so it was a good fit.


So describe what exactly you do for Stone?

 I am the Catering Sales Manager, and focus on the off-site events, weddings and corporate, but more so weddings.  I design proposals for our client’s events that in addition to our innovative cuisine and craft beer include rentals, entertainment and various other services. Stone World Bistro and Gardens also has an Events team that handles our many on-property parties and I am here to assist them as well.


Describe Stone as a catering company?

Stone Brewing Co. is known for its craft beer, and its reputation is our advertising.   Stone does not actively advertise anywhere in San Diego, not for beer or for our catering; we rely solely on word-of-mouth.  That approach is actually our company policy.  Our philosophy is about networking.

That being said, that also poses a challenge to us as a caterer.  Some do not realize that we have an off-site division that handles all private events.  We have only been in existence for about two years, and up until now, our presence hasn’t been highly emphasized.  Now, fortunately, we are on the preferred vendor lists of many San Diego wedding venues, so when people see our name on those lists, they reach out.


So what does Stone offer its catering customers?

We can bring the “Stone experience” directly to you.  We offer our clients a very customizable experience, great food and drink, and top-notch service.  We create all our menus individually, based on the client’s specific likes, dislikes, so our process does take some time.  At this time we do not operate with a pre-set menu.  We create something from nothing.

Stone has a good reputation in San Diego, and as a result, we have a core following.  The craft beer movement is so popular right now, and Stone is at the head of it.  Name recognition associated with our beer is our biggest plus. People know Stone and know the product, so I do not see our business ever advertising!  It’s funny: we don’t have a street number on our building; there is not even a logo on it.  That goes along with our “You’re not worthy” slogan; those that are worthy find us… if you want to know where we are, you’ll know where we are.


wedding catering san diego


Very interesting!  I can guess about your business mantra, but I’ll ask anyway: what guides Stone World Bistro and Gardens and Stone Catering’s business?

All of our food is 100% organic, as local as possible and sustainable.  In San Diego, Stone is one of the biggest recipients of local produce.  We firmly believe in giving back to the land, and we try to give more than we take.

We have an organic farm about 9 miles north of our location.  It also doubles as a rustic event space, but it is number one a working farm.  Brides are eager to see it and then are amazed when they see the work that’s done there.  It is not what they expect, but it contributes to setting Stone apart from the rest.

Our food is NOT typical bar food, like hamburgers and hotdogs.  We offer more world-type cuisine.  Our owners are very passionate about being different and eclectic in the restaurant business, and that approach is reflected in our catering, as well.  We don’t want to be what everyone else is; we want to stand-alone.  We think outside the box, and the chef and I will look up trends and try new recipes all the time.

Describe the process that a bride/couple goes through when working with you?

The chef and I customize a menu for our clients.  We talk to the clients, get to know them, ask them what their vision is, what’s special to them as a couple. Then, based off of what they tell us, we work to build a package for them. I also keep in mind the couple’s budget when planning, so I try to work within most parameters.

We have our popular dishes, and we can add those to any package, but whatever is selected, it all is prepared on site by a chef.  We bring the restaurant to them!  All our plans include food, the rental equipment, staffing, and of course, good flavor!


How long does that take?

Since each menu is customized, it does take more time than a generalized menu would. We take time to get to know the clients so we can then prepare a menu that truly speaks to them.

Our job is to provide the clients with hot and good food for their special day and if the venue permits, offer them our unique beer.  While we are not permitted by ABC to offer wine or alcohol, we can supply the beer and of course provide bar service. Our Certified Cicerone can also pair Stone’s beer with the foods they’ve selected.  Craft beer is a booming industry; it’s a movement.  Beer doesn’t just taste good; it pairs with food perfectly and can enhance the tastes and flavors.


Why did Stone decide to join Weddings of Distinction?  What does it mean to you?

I heard of WOD through another member, Lois Mathews, of Lois Mathews Design.  I’ve known her for years, and she told me about the group.  I was impressed with the group’s dedication and standard of quality and wanted to join.

I love the referrals that the group offers.   It really is a comfort getting referrals from trusted professionals and friends.  Also, since I have been in the business for many years, I have been able to connect with others and get on preferred vendor lists.

Being a member of Weddings of Distinction add to that.  Being a member of the group means being associated with core group of people that believe in good customer service.  Clients that work with WOD vendors are in the best hands possible, so they do not have to worry about anything, and Stone Catering is a part of that.  That is how we run our business.


What’s something that people may not know about you or Stone Brewing Co?

Two guys started Stone Brewery.  They met at a UC Davis extension class about beer and recognized each other thru a bond of music.  They started experimenting with home brew in Greg’s condo and the rest is history.   Stone Pale Ale was their original brew!

Also, we have a new location in Liberty Station; we feature collaborative and specialty beer there.  Also at this location are two indoor event spaces, a Bocee ball court, garden space and a theatre.  Wednesday nights we have movies in the garden, so people can come, have a beer and watch a flick!  This feature about this space is especially popular to brides!

Then, my last tickler, we are opening an airport store soon!  So people coming in and going out of San Diego will be able to enjoy Stone’s craft beer while waiting for a flight!


What advice would you give to those planning a wedding?

Contact at least 2-3 caterers and don’t necessarily go with the least expensive bid.  Look at the entire package, the service, the staffing and more.  We serve all organic food, so we are not the cheapest catering company, but we offer service above and beyond.  So, don’t skimp; don’t cut corners. People at your wedding remember the food, so remember that!

san diego weddings :: what’s trending in 2013

Weddings are a major production, and while the main premise will always stay the same (the celebration of love), the trends and themes with which that love is celebrated is constantly evolving and changing.

So, while it may be the beginning of June, and you may be wondering why we would explore 2013 wedding trends at this point in the year, we think there is no better time than now to explore how 2103 wedding trends have played out.  Using images and styles from some of the major San Diego bridal events as well as those from local photographers, we will explore a few things that we’ve noticed over the past five months.

Let’s explore!


Simple, Stunning Lines in Bridal Gowns

A girl knows when she’s found her dress, and it is the bridal gown that can impact the rest of the wedding.  This year, 2013 has proved to be the year of clean lines and simple elegance.  Also popular: lace.  Here are just a few styles:

Wedding Dresses San Diego

Photos courtesy of Luna Photo


Bright Colors/Accents Colors

“By using varying shades of the color you have chosen, you will be able to add depth and interest to your color scheme. For example, if your bridesmaid’s dresses are burgundy in color, you could use a deep red and a light red to achieve a contrasting look.”

Wedding Colors

Photos courtesy of Kristina Chartier Photography | TRUE PhotographyLuna Photo


Accessories and Headpieces

Traditional veils are a thing of the past.  Nowadays, brides are choosing stunning headpieces and/or accessories that are as unique as their personality.

Bridal Accessories

Photos courtesy of Studio Carre’ |  Luna Photo


Going Beyond the Wedding Cake

The days of one flavor cakes are long gone. Enjoy the flavors and tastes of multi-tiered/multi-layered wedding cakes. Or, better yet, enjoy desserts that are not just cake!  Now, mini donuts, cupcakes, candy and more are all viable dessert options!  Now, all your guests can enjoy de

Wedding dessertsPhotos courtesy of TRUE Photography | Luna Photo



Great Gatsby or Steampunk – English Garden Romance — Themed weddings are all the rage in 2013.  What’s better than the recreate a time long gone, or an atypical space not in the everyday.

European Garden Theme

themed weddings

Photos courtesy of Kristina Chartier Photography | Studio Carre’ | Luna Photo


Information courtesy of:

Everyday Experience

DREAM Bridal Event

San Diego Wedding

The Knot

Wedding Blogs 100

Bridal Guide