Monday, December 15, 2014

Jacquelynn & Justin Wedding - Coral Beach, Bermuda

Jacquelynn and Justin met in high school, but were polar opposites back then and didn't like each other one bit. The pair reconnected after their first year of university and really hit it off. Jacquelynn's theory is that Justin had had time to mature! They've now been together for 11 years, and have been through so much together, from first moving in together, to buying a house, traveling around the world and now getting married. They can't wait to see what this next chapter of life has to bring, but judging by their incredible wedding, they are off to a great start.

Jacquelynn spent months looking for wedding invitations, but didn't really like how traditional most of them were, so in the end, she decided to design her own. Her uncle painted the amazing watercolour artwork used on the whole suite and Linda at Bermuda Blueprinting worked hard to make the bride-to-be's vision come to life.

Jacquelynn's dress was a Paloma Blanca design, which the bride altered by removing the illusion neckline while keeping the unfinished lace edging to make it more her own.

Jacquelynn's something old was more like somethings: she wore a diamond tennis bracelet passed down from her great grandmother - the bride remembers her fondly and was so happy she was part of such a special day. She also included her beautiful rosary on her signing table, and her mother pinned her great grandfather's St Joseph's pendant in the wedding gown for good luck. The bride's mother loaned her diamond leaf ring, which was passed down to her from Jacquelynn's great grandmother for her something borrowed. Jacquelynn has always loved the details of this ring and was delighted to wear it on her right hand. Her something blue was a laced blue and white garter with which her mum had surprised her. And of course, her something new included fabulous sparkly heels, blush earrings found at a bridal boutique in New York, and a fun feathered hairpiece.

Jacquelynn's shoes were found at INC International and she fell in love with the soft blush hue and sparkle.

The flowers were arranged by Suzan Sickling, who is so talented and really brought the bride's vision to life. They had met a few times before the wedding and of course Jacquelynn had a million pinterest pictures in tow, but Suzan helped her narrow down all the ideas into her ultimate vision of something soft and loose and not too formal. Jacquelynn put her faith in the florist to do her magic, which of course Suzan did and the results were stunning.

The bride's hair was styled by Vernon at Tangles, and her make up was done by Elizabeth from Coopers. All the bridesmaids and mums also had their makeup done by the lovely ladies at Coopers.

Jacquelynn and Justin chose to have an intimate first meeting before the ceremony so they could do group photos before hand as it was important to them to spend as much time with their guests as possible. I love this moment of waiting before he sees her - the anticipation is almost tangible.

The couple say opting for a "first look" was one of the best decisions they made. They told me how it was so nice for them to hug and kiss each other and actually talk to one another instead of seeing each other in from of everyone at the ceremony. They say it made the moment so much more intimate and special.

Jacquelynn and Justin had their hearts set on a garden setting for their wedding. Her uncle Michael Mello owns Elements - a wedding and events company and has done more weddings than she can count. The bride knew she wanted Michael involved in all aspects and thought he'd know the best location to match her vision of a garden wedding. When he recommended Coral Beach, Jacquelynn had never even been there before. When they went to see the property, they feel in love immediately - it offered lush greenery of a garden, a stunning beach, and the water backdrop on the hilltop all in one location - they knew the knot tying would have to be there.

Justin didn't want just any ring. He spent a lot of time researching diamonds and in the end, wanted something classic and timeless. The engagement ring is a gorgeous solitair diamond which Justin hand selected and was made by Swiss Timing. Justin's ring, which is quite simple, was also created at Swiss Timing and Jacquelynn surprised him by having a private message engraved on the inside edge.

The couple have a cat called Charlotte who is truly like their child. They've raised her since she was a kitten so Justin thought it only fit to include the little fur ball in the proposal. He picked a random Thursday in November, mainly because he had just picked up the ring and was so nervous, he just wanted to get it done! He woke Jacquelynn up and was standing in front of her with Charlotte in his arms. Jacquelynn could see something hanging from the cat's collar, but since she didn't have her contacts in yet, she assumed it was a bell. She reached up to feel what it was and when she realised it was an engagement ring, she just started crying and kissing Justin. Of course she was over the moon and even though they'd been together for ten years and had talked about marriage, she was still surprised. She immediately got on the phone to tell their parents the news and about fifteen minutes later, Justin mentioned that she hadn't actually said "yes" yet!

Throwing in a bit of Italian style, the couple came up with the idea of arriving at their reception on a Vespa. They guests were so surprised to see them driving around the wedding lawn and absolutely loved it. They rode to the song "Best Day of Our Lives" by American Authors which truly reflected how they felt and all their guests came running to greet them.

This was a very hands on wedding. Jacquelynn is a self confessed control freak and was involved in every aspect. She wanted the reception to have a romantic garden feel, but also have a bit of an Italian flare. The newly weds have been to various parts of Italy and love everything about it. The bride and her mother put together the menu to reflect the theme and they even cut hundreds of rosemary sprigs to put at each place setting. She and the bridesmaids hand made the guest favours, which were Rosemary & Chilli olive oils.

The bride's uncle, Michael Mello of Elements, decorated the tent which was absolutely breath taking, from the fairy lights on the trees inside, to the old Bermuda sash windows around the tent, to the gorgeous wooden entry doors which he hand made. He also hung chandeliers, made wine box cocktail table tops, as well as wrapped the tent poles in delicious elephant ivy - it was magical.

Because of their love of wine, Jacquelynn spent months collecting wine corks from friends and various establishments. She and her mother then made cork bases for around each of the hurricane vases, made frames for chalk boards and even make a three foot wooden letter "M" that was displayed on the front of the DJ booth.

The cake was done by Sabine at Coral Beach. Jacquelynn is a huge fan of and spent a long time trying to find ideas for their cake. She wanted something rustic and elegant to go with the rest of the reception decor. She gave Coral Beach a picture which the chef reproduced perfectly and then the bride found flowers that matched the theme. In keeping with Bermudian traditions, the newlyweds also had small silver and gold leaf cakes for good luck.

Justin and Jacquelynn's first dance was to "You & Me" by Lifehouse. They wanted something less traditional and they've always loved the song. It was released when the couple were first dating in university and listening to it always takes them back to those first few years together. They actually wanted all of their songs to reflect on who they were and use a real mix of genres. The bride walked down the aisle to an acoustic version of "All of Me" by John Legend, and they walked back up the aisle as husband and wife to "Signed, Sealed, Delivered" by Stevie Wonder.

Justin and Jacquelynn - you two are clearly very patient when it comes to waiting until everything is perfect. From how long you two were together before you tied the knot, to the painstaking efforts taken to make your wedding day utterly unforgettable, to even not sharing this blog post of photos until I had shared all your special details in words that accompany the images. I am so impressed with you both and hopefully on all counts, it was worth the wait. Wishing you much happiness in your marriage together and thank you again for asking me to be part of such a magical day. xxx

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