CORONA DEL MAR — With tepid year-round temperatures and beautiful coastal venues, Orange County wedding planners enjoy an eight-month wedding "season."
Orange County brides choose to get married between May and October at upscale venues such as the Resort at Pelican Hill in Newport Coast, the St. Regis in Laguna Beach, Montage in Laguna Beach and the Ritz-Carlton in Laguna Nigel, said Corona del Mar resident and experienced wedding planner Barbara Wallace.
"It's because it's so beautiful," Wallace said of Orange County, which attracts brides-to-be from all over the state. "A lot of people want to get married near or over the water."
Wallace's full-service wedding planning was seen recently on the third season of the "Real Housewives of Orange County" in which she was hired by Lauri Waring and George Peterson.
"They were very lovely people to work with," the celebrity wedding planner said. "They knew what they wanted, but they were also ready to listen to suggestions."
Wallace helped the couple create an Italian-inspired wedding after Lake Como, where the engagement took place, she said.
Already about six weeks into Orange County's wedding season, Wallace recently held a book signing at South Coast Plaza on Saturday for her new book, "Beautiful Bride From Every Angle."
The more than 300-page hardcover book is the accumulation of her 15 years of planning weddings — some of which had budgets upwards of $2 million — and the experience of fashion stylist Annie Withers and wedding photographer Lars Wanberg.
"Everyone deserves a beautiful wedding," Wallace said. "It's just up to the couple to work it out within their own resources."
The book covers tips such as financial planning, creating a wedding "road map," preparing for day-of emergencies, incorporating personal style into the wedding dress and hair and how to pose for photos.
Wallace described the book as everything a bride would need to get through her wedding, the most important "one performance play" with no opportunity for a do-over in a bride's life.
With that high-intensity focus on a single day, Wallace said that it takes a certain type of detail-oriented person to manage the months of planning.
However, Wallace can never get enough of the business of love, which reads a lot like a romance story with a full beginning, middle and end, she said.
"I don't think that you can have too much love," Wallace said. "That's what the world is all about."