LOVE STRUCK // Andrew + Sequoia

Meet Andrew and Sequoia, two of my most beloved clients who recently tied the knot in Oakland.  The duo is aspiring to become restaurateurs, currently satiating their appetite with a beautiful blog CASA PEPE, overflowing with gorgeous photos and recipes that any food lover will drool over.  Keep your eyes on these two, the restaurant they are dreaming up is bound to be exceptional.

I remember when Andrew stopped by the shop back when it was still in the alley, he was so sweet and nervous-- not about the decision to ask Sequoia to be his wife {which he was so certain about}, but about getting the ring part right, and getting up the nerve to actually ask her.  He popped by a few times before deciding exactly what he wanted to get for her, and together we designed a Classic Engagement ring for her.  Later they came back in and got their wedding bands, he picked the Classic Wedding Band and she paired her diamond with a simple mitsuro style Feather Band.  They were so fun and easy to work with-- I knew their wedding day would be a relaxed and joyful day because that is what they embody together.  

Here is their love story in their own words, enjoy.

1// How did you meet, what was your initial impression?

SEQUOIA: We met at a dive bar- The Graduate to be exact. My friend literally dragged me out of the house right after I had returned from a most fucked up trip to Argentina. A cute boy, Andrew, walked up to me and offered to light my cigarette. For the rest of the night we spoke only Spanish to each other, in fact he introduced himself as Andrés. He called me for dinner an appropriate 3 days later and the rest is history. 

ANDREW:  We met at a dive called the Graduate.  I though she was super cute and offered to buy her and her friend a Fernet.  She didn't really seem interested in me, and I was acting pretty sassy, she'll probably say she thought I was gay and latino.  We talked about our favorite public television chef José Andrés.  She invited me over to her place to watch a documentary on Frida.  PS. that's all that went down.  Neither one of us was looking for love but we sure found it.  

2 // A memorable moment from dating prior to getting engaged?

SEQUOIA:  We've had some really great trips- Spain, New York and Portland to name a few… But the best times to me are the times that we had, sitting around the house drinking coffee, listening to NPR and cooking. There's nothing sexier than a man in an apron.

ANDREW:  We had a really long and crazy date about a month in.  We'd gone to the Jeremiah O'Brian, that docked old merchant marine ship in SF, for some kind of an all day beer drinking event.  It was kind of a shit show, she got pretty upset that someone tried to give her watermelon flavored beer.  Then I took her to a bunch of old man bars in North Beach and Chinatown.   We might have broken up and gotten back together that day.  I think that date really tested our compatibility. 

3 // How did you become engaged?

SEQUOIA:  Andrew proposed on our 3 year anniversary in the middle of the street, in from of the same liquor store that he had told me he loved me for the first time- a week after we met.

ANDREW:  It was her birthday three years after we had met.  I took her to the Claremont for a "staycation".  We went down to College to get some dinner and I was trying to work up the courage to pop the question.  There's a parking lot there that's in front of a liquor store, I know it's not glamorous but it was the first place I told her that I loved her, so it has a special significance to us.  She started crying when she saw the ring and then she said, "Yes."

4// Favorite moments from your wedding.  Did you have any special ritual or tradition?

SEQUOIA: We spent the night away from each other, which was very unusual for us. When I arrived and saw him standing at the end of the aisle- it felt like such a homecoming. He looked unbelievably handsome. We held each others hands so tight. Feeling the love and support of our friends and family around us, as we said our vows with the sun shining through the tree branches, was a dream.

Also, our wedding party gave some of the most heartfelt, beautiful and hilarious speeches, ever. Hearing the blessings and memories from some of our dearest friends was super cool.  And I really do need to mention the food. We are so food oriented that it would be wrong not to salute our fantastic kitchen crew that made one of the best meals of my life.

We didn't really have any rituals but we did dance our asses off. Dancing with my mom, twirling and sobbing, will always be one of my greatest memories. 

ANDREW:  Our wedding was magic.  It was a DIY Oakland style affair.  We had the ceremony in Joaquin Miller and the reception a the Starline Social Club.  Having so many family and friends in one place is almost overwhelming.  The actual event went by so fast its like one great moment in time.  It makes me feel lucky to have so many people willing to give us love and support.  We had lost some important people in our lives in the previous couple of years so it was important to keep them in our thoughts.  
photo by Dustin Cantrell

photo by Dustin Cantrell

photo by Dustin Cantrell
5// The magic ingredient is: 

SEQUOIA:  FIRE! I'm Spanish and he's Italian so there's never a dull moment. But we follow the golden rule of never going to sleep mad at each other. OH and SALT! Andrew always says- when you think you've added enough salt- add twice as much!

ANDREW: We are partners in life.  We stick together with unconditional love and affection.   But we don't kill each other because we know how to fight and compromise.  

L O V E + M E T A L