And our wedding venue is...

Brunswick Studio in LA's fashion district

Our wedding venue is truly an AMAZING space. We both loved it from the moment we stepped in and knew this was it. It is exactly what we want -- a blank canvas with a whole lot of character, if that makes any sense at all. It's a loft-style space with hardwood floors, exposed posts, and brick walls. This 6500 square foot space is large enough to hold the ceremony and reception. Surprisingly, the price is right, only because we got lucky and saw the place as it was undergoing renovations and the price had not gone up yet. Words cannot even do this place justice. It is simply GORGEOUS. Check out the fabulous photos taken by David C. Lee on the Brunswick Studio website.

photo borrowed from Brunswick Studio, fabulous photography by David C. Lee

Not so much...

Terrell Moore’s Art Gallery (Inglewood)
This guy Terrell Moore is an artist living in what could be an awesome loft (if he cleaned it up) above his art gallery. The white walled art gallery along with his art would be great for an art show/cocktail party. The room had a round wall that would make a difficult reception set up…it might feel like people are separated into two different rooms – A list and B list? The “kitchen” consisted of a counter and a microwave. Plus, his bathrooms were too dirty for me. We now get invites to Ping Ping’s events. WOOOOO HOOOOO... not really.
UPDATE: He sent out an email saying he has now SOLD the place. We would have been SCREWED if we had gone with this guy (not that we would have).

The Open Space (Jtown)
This is near the train tracks in downtown LA…not the safest area but there was some nice graffiti art outside that would make for pretty awesome wedding pictures. As for the actual studio though, I was not getting a wedding vibe…or even a party vibe. It is a dance studio, with a ballet bar and a dance lesson going on while we were checking out the place. The price was right…but yea…not so much.

We like...

Rec Center Studios (Echo Park)
Rec Center This is the first space we looked at and I was very excited about it. We really love the look of this space. From the outside, it doesn't look like an event space at all. The hallway leading in is an original bowling lane. I liked the sunken lounge area with its tall brick wall...perfect for cocktails and lounging. The main space has beautiful high ceilings with skylights, stark white walls and hardwood floors. There is also a loft space that could be used for DJ set up, as well as a kitchen/bar and changing rooms. However, the actual usable space for a ceremony and reception was not ideal for our projected wedding size of 125+ people. We would have to have the ceremony in the main space, move everyone over to the lounge area for cocktails, and transform the ceremony to the reception. It would make things a little difficult but we would be willing. Our other option would be to have the ceremony in a different location, but that would also mean added cost. The price was already slightly higher than we wanted to spend but again, we were leaning towards willing. The metered parking lot would constantly have to feed until 8pm. Yeah, that would be a fun job for someone.
photo borrowed from Rec Center Studios

Hangar 1018 (downtown LA)

This was a nice, big space, again with brick and white walls. It had a loft space for a DJ set up. There was a changing room and space in the back for catering set up. There was also a back patio area that I really didn’t think was usable because it was quite dirty. The main space was cohesive and would be nice for a reception and dancing, but no space for a ceremony. The price was again a little bit higher than we wanted to pay, but we liked the look of the space. There was street parking available, which was free after 6:00pm, and no option for a parking lot.

Hangar 1018 - photo borrowed from Hangar 1018 website photos

Lovely on paper...er, online

Huron Substation
Although we didn’t actually check out this space in person, I am sure I would have loved it. It is a gorgeous space with an outdoor courtyard and indoor main floor and mezzanine with old brick walls, high ceilings, and exposed steel beams. Unfortunately for us, the place has grown quite popular, having been featured in publications and screenings, and is way out of our budget. There were also a few other drawbacks in the details. At the time, events could be booked only six months in advance (I believe her website now says 8 months). The owner only books six events per year, so by the end of the year, she may have already met her quota. With our projected guest list, it might be too small, holding a max of 125 people. You must use a preferred vendor for the site rep, for which a price is not listed. I believe there was a reserved parking lot that you could pay to use.
Huron Substation - photo borrowed from the Huron Substation portfolio

Smog Shoppe and Marvimon
After a quick email and response, I realized both these places were too expensive. But, I love them. If I had unlimited funds, I would check out either of these amazing spaces. The Smog Shoppe is in the Culver City art district and the Marvimon is in downtown LA. Both are quite fabulous and I wouldn’t mind attending a wedding here.

Smog Shoppe -amazing photography by Picotte Photography

Marvimon -amazing photography by Picotte Photography


The search for our perfect wedding venue

The vision: urban…chic…industrial…brick walls…exposed beams...CHEAP CHEAP CHEAP…in L.A. Is that so much to ask?!
Upon countless hours of online research (mostly done by the groom) and several visitations, you can see the top contenders, major losers, and finally, our perfect wedding venue.

Bride vs. Groom?

Yes, that does say "bride versus groom." Yes, we are getting married. No, this is not a death match.

I am an elementary school teacher and my boyfriend fiance is a graduate student. We are planning our wedding in this not-so-great economy on my not-so-great salary and his not-so-great stipend.

First order of business...what am I going to wear!? Hah, I wish. More like, how much money can we afford to spend? Boo, buzz kill. We set a $20,000 budget, with the groom's no doubt expectation of going over in order to have the wedding that I envision. However, I cannot resist a challenge (part of how our relationship came to be), and I am doing my damnedest to stick to the budget while still knocking the stilettos off of the ladies (because really, let's face it, as long as there is plenty of alcohol, the guys will be as happy content as they can possibly be at a wedding).

I admit, this blog is more for me to keep a record of our wedding planning process (much easier than a scrapbook). But, please join me in this battle of bride versus groom.