you’re getting married where?

30 Dec


We picked a date and venue for our wedding! Originally I wanted to do an out-of-town wedding in the central coast of California but it ended up feeling overwhelming to coordinate. I didn’t like the idea of having to work with vendors who I had never met. We also decided we didn’t want to make all our guests travel for a weekend wedding. As special as we think our wedding is, we realize not everyone wants to travel for it! So we set our sites on finding the perfect LA venue. We wanted to find an indoor/outdoor space that wasn’t a hotel. We were both set on not getting married indoors- we want to be outside when we say “I do”.

Many months ago, before we got engaged, Brian and I were at an open house in Culver City and stumbled down the street into space called the SmogShoppe. Once a 1980’s smog check center, SmogShoppe is now a converted 6,500 square foot indoor/outdoor space. The outside is pretty nondescript with big tall cement walls covered in succulents (Brian’s favorite though), but when you walk behind the cement walls you find yourself in a magical space. There’s a big beautiful succulent garden outdoors to get married in. Inside is a huge long space with wood tables and exposed beams- it feels rustic despite not being a barn. It’s eclectic and fun. It’s the perfect place for us. At the time I said “This would be a great place to get married” not thinking it would really be were I got married.




Eight months later with a ring on my finger we chose the SmogShoppe to become man and wife, November 2013 and we are oh so excited about it!

Telling our family the name of the venue has been funny though.

My poor grandmother was like, “What? You’re getting married where??? A smog shop????”

My mother took to sending me texts that read “It’s not everyday your daughter get’s married at a smog shop.” Hysterical mother.

I’m so happy that choosing a venue and securing a date is over because that sucked. I can’t believe how fast things book up! This whole wedding business is insane! We originally wanted a September wedding but are learning to be happy with a November wedding because of this very problem. Luckily LA doesn’t get that cold that time of year. Although I would prefer to be cold in a big white heavy dress then hot. I hate being hot.

So now we attack booking everything else for the big day. Let the fun begin!


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14 Responses to “you’re getting married where?”

  1. Katie D December 30, 2012 at 11:52 am #

    So exciting! I peeped in at a wedding going on here last summer and it looked gorgeous!!! Can’t wait to toast you in person soon. xx

    • katemcclafferty December 30, 2012 at 5:10 pm #

      Really?! Good! Can’t wait to toast with you in person too! We also must toast your beautifully written blog 🙂 xoxo

      • Katie D December 30, 2012 at 5:18 pm #

        you are so sweet, thank you for all of your support!!! 🙂 happy new year!

  2. sophiaharcourt December 30, 2012 at 11:53 am #

    After our shoot I googled this place. It is awesome! Though I love old barns I think this place is better. It still has the natural rustic charm of a barn but you (or your guests) don’t have to worry about digging their heels in grass. I also love that you found it before you knew you’d need it. And succulents are both beautiful and awesome.

    • katemcclafferty December 30, 2012 at 5:09 pm #

      “It still has the natural rustic charm of a barn but you (or your guests) don’t have to worry about digging their heels in grass”- hahah
      Can’t wait to see pics from the shoot!!! xo

  3. December 30, 2012 at 12:59 pm #

    That looks absolutely fabulous. I used to get smog checks there. I loooooove it. I can loan u persiam rugs if u like. Mary
    Sent from my Verizon Wireless BlackBerry

  4. righteousbruin9 December 30, 2012 at 1:40 pm #

    It will be awesome. LA in November is not cold, usually, and once your family sees these photos, I would guess they will be quite happy.

    • katemcclafferty December 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm #

      Good point!! LA in November is usually gorgeous. Hope you are well:) Happy New Year!

  5. Danielle December 30, 2012 at 5:06 pm #

    Beautiful! It will surely be an unforgettable event for you and your guests… for one reason or another 😉 happy new year!

    • katemcclafferty December 30, 2012 at 5:08 pm #

      Ha! That’s true! Happy New Year to you too!!!! 2012 treated you very well:)

  6. Maria December 30, 2012 at 11:13 pm #

    hi kate,

    congrats on finding the perfect venue for your special day! It looks beautiful!!!!!
    I actually manage a banquet hall here in Toronto. Work long ass hours and meet a lot of different people. 4 years ago I was a little overwhelmed – the long hours and having someone elses special day lay in my hands…it was a lot to get used to! BUT I fell into it and today I really enjoy what I do and even more so when I work with a couple who are a pleasure to work with. If they make my job easier (meaning they aren’t crazy but down to earth people) than I always go a little further to ensure their reception goes perfectly. And I actually want to be there! Maybe throw in a free chocolate fountain in or something along those lines! lol its always goes a long way to work with great kind people! my point is, I can already tell your going to be a pleasure to work with for the manager at the venue you’ve picked!! As a banquet manager we always want everything to go perfectly for our clients and we give it 100%!…to the point where come Sundays you can barely feel your feet! But it’s always worth it when we do get to work with wonderful person and be apart of putting their special day together. I love what i do because I develop friendships with some of my clients and always tell them to come back with its time for the baby shower!! When all is said and done and i’ve done my job, that simple “thank you” always makes me feel like a million bucks!! its all i really need!! When my clients tell me they got a good vibe from me the moment we started working together or that they loved working with me and i made everything so easy for them…I know im doing what I should be doing!! the part I make sure i NEVER miss is the bride and grooms entrance to the room, onto the dance floor to share their first dance together as husband and wife!…its my favorite part!! May you enjoy every single minute of the planning!! Your wedding day will come fast and go fast so enjoy the all the happy moments!…I cant wait to see how beautiful it turns out!! Happy planning to you and Brain and happy new year 🙂

  7. Sarah December 31, 2012 at 5:48 am #

    Fall weddings are my favorite! I think you will probably come to realize that November is just perfect!

  8. Suzanne December 31, 2012 at 2:59 pm #

    Gorgeous! Wow I can’t imagine having such AWESOME settings for photos. Trying not to be jealous 🙂

    Can’t wait to see what else you come up with!


  1. hysterical, mother. « - January 22, 2013

    […] you know how I mentioned that Brian and I are getting married at a venue called the Smog Shoppe in November? Well, my mother […]

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