Being it was their combined love of baseball that brought them together, it was only right for Jeni and James to incorporate a baseball theme into their wedding. “I played softball and he played baseball throughout his whole life. [It] was something, when we first started dating, that was a common love that we had,” Jeni explains. “We started going to Giants games and really fell in love with each other along the way.”
While they wanted to incorporate baseball into their big day, Jeni also didn’t want to leave out the romantic part. The couple was able to achieve both through a vintage baseball theme, when they tied the knot at The Flower Farm Inn. The theme started with the save the dates and invitations, which Jeni made using one of their engagement photos taken at Raley Field.
During the reception, the newly wedded couple made their grand entrance walking under baseball bats and flowers held up by the wedding party. Upon arriving, wedding attendees had the chance to sign a custom-made Louisville Slugger baseball bat and a large baseball; seating assignments were “team assignments,” where each table had its own team and pennant; reception centerpieces featured tall vases filled with baseballs and topped with flower arrangements; and favors were Cracker Jacks customized with personalized labels.
A unique idea James had was to do a “stat sheet” on the newlyweds that included information on how they had met and why they wanted to be with each other. “A stat sheet is how you get to know the players in the game, and it was a way for our guests to get to know us,” he says.
Even the cake was worked into the theme, which Jeni says was frosted with all white stitching like that on a baseball, turned into hearts. “We didn’t have any cake toppers, but we had two hearts stitched together and they said J & J,” she adds.
Jeni was excited to have a theme that was not just a passion of hers, but a passion of her groom’s as well. “I really wanted it to include James and be something he could relate to throughout the whole planning process,” she adds. For his part, James says that being involved in the planning was “an amazing experience,” and encourages all other soon-to-be grooms to do the same. “My goal was to give my wife her perfect wedding day, so obviously I wanted it to be all her, but having it be half mine was really amazing,” he explains.
“I kept telling everyone how this really was the happiest day of my life and it was all because it really was our day.”
Jeni advises brides-to-be to not rush and take their time. She found stretching their engagement from one year to two gave her time to think about what she wanted and to find the things she wanted. “You really want the wedding that you dreamed of, so take the time to do that,” she adds.
— Corrie Pelc
Jeni & James's Wedding Resources
Biggest Fan by Backstreet Boys
Girls Just Want To Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper
Hot Legs by Rod Stewart
I wanted something soft & romantic so I chose hydrangeas and peoniew with garden roses.
Cracker jack boxes with personalized labels.
A unique moment was that I had my godson Jordan walk our dog Bella down the aisle (she was our flower girl). My mother-in-law made her a flower collar.
• We had so many little details that tied in baseball to our wedding:
• Our favors were Cracker Jack boxes with personalized labels. The place cards were baseball game tickets.
• We had two different centerpieces. On the rectangle tables there were tall clear vases filled with baseballs and a flower arrangement on top. On the round tables there were square shorter vases filled with peanuts and flowers on top.
• Make sure you make time for yourself to soak it all in. DON'T BE RUSHED.
• Do research on the photographer. Make sure they are great and understand your vision. These pictures are your only chance to relive your day.