Our photo editor Cristina Lozito is constantly on the hunt for real weddings that defy editors'—and readers'—expectations. Some amazing celebrations she's found: this spectacular New Year' Eve bash, complete with spats, a bouquet made of fresh vegetables and silver spoons, and a clock that was programmed to run backward once it struck midnight (what the what?!), and this terrifically spooky Halloween wedding, in which the groom came down the aisle in a casket (no joke!). For a while, Cristina had been searching for a Disney-themed wedding to feature—something with just the right balance of whimsy and elegance (since it's a little too easy to go overboard with the Disney theme). Her search was over when she found this charming wedding held at the Disneyland Hotel in Anaheim, photographed by Heidi Ryder and also featured in the current issue of Brides Southern California magazine.
For the bride and groom, who met in high school (in marching band!), Disneyland was the perfect venue for their nuptials. "We both grew up in Disney-loving families," explains Ashley. "And once we began dating, we made several trips to Disneyland together—we couldn't imagine getting married anywhere else." Their wedding cake, created by Disney's Fairytale Weddings, epitomized their wedding's tasteful Disney theme—the elegant tiers were inscribed with classic "storybook ending" text (piped in gold-tinted frosting) and topped with a whimsical Mickey-and-Minnie figurine by Lenox (available for purchase here). We absolutely love this wedding—it's Disney done just right. —Heather Lee