For Better or Worse, Twice is Nice

By Jon Vreeland   |   April 5, 2018
Emma Recher at her other business for the past seven months, Mundo’s restaurant on Milpas Street, a great place to hold a dinner or any meal for a stress-free celebration planned through Montecito Weddings

It is no secret that most women dream of the day they can walk arm and arm with Daddy down the flower-littered aisle while wearing a long white dress and veil while the organ serenades the bride-to-be in her, hopefully, once in a lifetime experience amid their closest friends and family. However, the cost of this sacred celebration, or the day the bride and groom devote their perpetual and unconditional love to one another averages more than a brand-new automobile – or even one full year at a private college, which costs $34,740, according to 

In 2016, The Knot shows the cost of a wedding with 141 guests in attendance averaged around $35,000, nearly a $3,000 increase from the year prior, and with 149 attendees. And Kelley Blue Book shows the average cost of a new car is $33,560 (USA Today). Furthermore, the Census Bureau of 2016 shows the annual median household income in the United States at just under $60,000. So, as you can see, a new car (or one-year at a private college) plus a semi-outlandish wedding for the couple averages well over a person’s annual salary. 

Those astronomical numbers are the reason Santa Barbara business owner Emma Recher, along with the reverend Sarah Farmer, have re-launched Montecito Weddings, a business the Reverend Farmer initially started 12 years back. The two women are determined to utilize the shores of Santa Barbara and Montecito with affordable wedding packages and provide any couple with aspirations of a tremendous marital inception with a well-planned celebration the newlyweds, as well as any number of guests desired, will remember for the remainder of their lives.

“Santa Barbara is the city of weddings, and we want everybody to be able to get married in Santa Barbara,” says Emma, who is also a novelist born in Paris, France. “And you can have a nice wedding on the beach, especially here in Santa Barbara.”

Montecito Wedding packages offer ceremonial settings on either of the five local beaches, which includes Leadbetter, as well as a Santa Barbara local’s favorite, Butterfly Beach. Or, the future newlyweds also have the privilege of choosing from the Santa Barbara Courthouse Clock Tower, Mural Room – and of course – their historical Sunken Garden, as their formal setting.

Some packages carry a cost as low as 90 percent below the national average, such as the “All You Need is Love” package, which consists of an amorous 25-to-30 minute ceremony given by a non-denominational minister, with a complimentary witness, as well as the filing of the paperwork. 

But Emma says that Montecito Weddings can handle weddings of “any-size,” providing everything from a seaside ceremony, or wherever the couple may choose, with the handling of tedious necessities like invitations, photo and videographer, a coordinator, rehearsal, hair and make-up for the lady-in-white, live pianist or harpist, and a list that goes on and on with the option of customizing packages to the client’s ultimate satisfaction.

“We intend to take the time, stress, and expense out of wedding planning, so that couples can enjoy their special day without having to lift a finger,” says the reverend Sarah Farmer. “Emma upgraded the catering/reception packages by bringing on board local and amazing celebrity chef, Jean-Paul Luvanvi, bringing Montecito Weddings to a whole new level.”

Although Montecito Weddings can book the couple any venue the lovebird’s desire, Emma says that the primary focus is to ensure the availability of a beautiful California wedding on the golden shores of the American Riviera. So, before you postpone another year of college, or before you decide to take another chance on your tired old vehicle, visit the Montecito Weddings website at, and explore the many packages Ms. Emma Recher and the reverend Sarah Farmer have meticulously organized for the planning of your dream wedding. 

Montecito Weddings is at 1482 East Valley Road #312 in Montecito. The phone number is (310) 613-6370. 


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