When your job entails writing about wedding after gorgeous wedding, you tend to fall fast and hard for a myriad of details and styles. I don’t have a favorite dress or style of wedding. I definitely play the field in that department. One day it’s a classic ballroom obsession and today it’s destination Jamaica. But it goes deeper than the dreamy beach details crafted by Firefly Events. For me, its all about the couple and the way their love is so beautifully captured by Bryce Covey. That love literally bounces out of each image. It’s palpable and these two also happen to be drop dead gorgeous which never hurts. Beauty, beach and love; it’s all entangled in one gorgeous gallery right here.
From the Bride + Groom… The story of our wedding was nothing short of an adventure. We are a creative couple (Andre is an artist) that simply wants to have fun with the people we love. We wasted no time attracting a set of partners that felt the same way. First we immediately fell in love with our wedding planner Teissia, owner of Firefly Events, after a quick dinner at Jane. She knew we were crazy and wanted to just have fun but was excited about the adventure. We quickly chose Jamaica as our destination because Andre’s family is from there and it allowed us to have a less stressful process. Even though Teissia was based in NY, we felt confident in her abilities to guide us in the right direction with my parents being her overseas liaisons. Next, we found Bryce Covey who was the perfect photographer to round out the crew. He loved traveling, he’s outgoing, an awesome photographer and, most importunately, was ready for whatever adventure we put in front of him. Last we used Tanayia’s brother, J William Washington, as our art director and master of fonts. He gave all our invites, cards, save the dates, and website the perfect design sensibility that was a mix of adventure, vintage elegance and fun.
Before the wedding, we did everything we could to set the stage for what to expect. The first element that set a tone was our Save the Dates. Instead of sending out cards, we made a video of us redubbing our own story on top of a scene from “Coming to America” and titled everything Coming to Jamaica. From that point on, all our guests knew they weren’t in for a traditional wedding. Our wedding website guided everyone through how to prepare for our wedding and even set up a live video chat to answer any questions before everyone took off. In planning the details of the wedding no tradition was safe. In everything we planned we asked ourselves: Is this necessary? If it wasn’t we tried to figure out a way to make it personal and fun for all our guests. One of the best decisions we made was taking over a private villa, Golden Cove Villa, for 7 straight days which allowed our guests to make a trip out of it all. We had an itinerary everyday that gave them a taste of Jamaica. It felt like a family reunion where the Golden Cove staff made us feel like a part of their family.
The wedding dress was also non-traditional and that created a stir amongst mothers and friends. So eventually a compromise was made and a white dress was purchased for the ceremony while the original dress from Jenny Packham was set for the grand entrance into the reception. This turned out to be the perfect decision because it was a good surprise and delight but also in the end, everyone was in love with the original non-traditional dress. As for some of our own personal touches, there we many. Instead of having our wedding party walk down the aisle in faux couples we borrowed from the Indian tradition where the groom is danced down the aisle. Andre led a procession down the aisle with his groomsmen dancing to James Brown. The ladies strutted down the runway aisle to Beyonce’s “Girls.” To add a little drama (and because it was really hot) the girls carried feathered fans instead of bouquets. Each chair was dressed with sunglasses and guide to having fun at our wedding.
For the reception it was really important that our guests get to know Jamaican culture. This means that it is mandatory that you drink Andre’s dad’s famous rum punch placed on each table in glitter covered bottles personally crafted by his mom. Dancing is also a mandatory, so to encourage our guests to hit the LED light floor we had a dance contest (shout out to DJ Kevan who rocked the turntables!) between each table where the winner would receive a prize. Instead of a guest book we created a “Love Line” with a vintage telephone connected to voice activated recorder where people could leave us message (which turned out to be hilarious as the night went on and the drinks were flowing). Also, there was a photo booth in the gazebo to capture everyone putting on fake dreads. Because we wanted to celebrate all the love in the house the garter was tossed to the married men and the bouquet to the married ladies, coincidentally a matching married couple both won and “showcased” their love with the garter belt dance. The day after the wedding we took our friends to a hidden waterfall to hang out. We also brought our wedding gear to take a second set of photos. We didn’t plan it but the last shot was us “taking the plunge” which ended up being one of our favorite photos of the entire experience.
Wedding Photography: Bryce Covey Photography / Wedding Venue: Golden Cove Villas in Oracabessa, Jamaica / Wedding Planning: Firefly Events / Floral Design: Jan’s Bridal and Flowers / Wedding Catering: Chef Gregory Nelson / Wedding Cake: Lincoln Peterkin / Wedding Dress: David’s Bridal (white ceremony dress) + Jenny Packham (reception dress) / Bride’s Shoes: ALDO / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: JLM Couture / Groom’s Suit: My Suit / Groom + Groomsmen’s Shoes: ASOS