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Tropical and Glamorous Wedding at St. Thomas Ritz

With a love story that began underwater, it only feels fitting that a Ritz Carlton St. Thomas ceremony followed suit. Strawberry Milk Events came alongside the couple to plan their dream seaside soiree bursting with East End Flowers. Subtle patterns of (real!) wallpaper – from paper cones to table runners - were a lovely ode to the Bride’s family business while Sylvie Gil was beautifully capturing all the tropical glamour here.

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From Julie at Strawberry Milk EventsAn elegant fun destination wedding weekend, 100 of their nearest and dearest gathered to celebrate their wedding.The night before the wedding there was a colorful beach bash with a carnival theme. We embraced classic glamour in a tropical setting. The muted palette showcased gorgeous scenery. With shades of white, cream, and a pale aqua accented against gold and lucite. We honored the Bride’s family by incorporating their family business, York Wallcoverings, as a subtle pattern through the day. Using real wallpaper into the details of the day, paper cones, petal toss, menus, invitations, escort cards, and table runners. It was a beautiful celebration.

From the Bride… We met by accident at a cocktail party. William asked me if he could take me on a date. He had trouble remembering my name and called me “Allison” when he asked me out. We went on that date 4 years ago and the rest is history.

As a birthday present William got me scuba diving certification classes and to complete my certification I had one last dive in Cozumel, Mexico. When I was underwater my future husband showed me a shell and lifted it up from the ground and when he opened the shell there was a diamond.. He proposed right there on the spot UNDERWATER! Which was pretty smart, because he didn’t have to say anything, plus the diamond looked extra big underwater :)

What was special about our wedding was the idea of creating a vacation getaway for everyone. Originally we were going to have our wedding in his hometown, which was going to require a long commute for everyone, especially for those guests who were coming from outside the U.S. So, we decided to change our whole plan and choose a beautiful vacation destination-the Caribbean. We chose St. Thomas, USVI.

We wanted it to be easy and exotic all at the same time. A place people might not ever get a chance to visit. We wanted a smaller, more intimate feel but with enough options of things to do. The choice of resort was extremely important with the requirement that everyone stay at the resort. Since English was the native language, US currency and cell phone reception was everywhere. There was a built in convenience factor that helped us make our destination decision. The setting of the resort, while large enough to accommodate all of our guests, was still very intimate, creating the environment for our 125 guest to meet and get to know one another over the course of the long weekend. Also helpful was the shared experience of participating in daily activities we planned like group snorkeling, a sailing Regatta and Beach Olympics.

Since I work in the family business of manufacturing wall coverings, we used wallpaper to accent the wedding decor – from the invitations and table runner to programs and pocket squares for the groomsmen. My wedding dress was from Monique Lhuillier, style-Luminere bought in Washington, DC. My shoes were custom-made by Kate Spade.

Photography: Sylvie Gil Photography | Wedding Planner: Strawberry Milk Events | Floral Design: East End Flowers | Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Shoes: Kate Spade | Hair & Makeup: Artistry By Kristina | Band: In The Sand Band | Bistro Lights, Uplighting, Dance Floor, Chairs: Jenn Events | Ritz Carlton St Thomas: Ritz Carlton St Thomas | Wallpaper On Tables: York Wallcoverings

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Elegant Island Wedding in St. John

This week has been insanely cold here in New England and with flurries swirling outside my window, I can’t even fathom the glory of summer days ahead. So when this wedding in St. John came my way, I took full advantage of a mental escape. With Island Style Weddings at the helm, this elegant affair was casual, yet chic, and I’ll be soaking up Lindsay Vann’s gorgeous photos as we brace for the cold weekend ahead.

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From Mary Bartolucci… Good tunes, breathtaking views, and creative minds are just some of the elements that helped make Natalie and Scott’s wedding day unforgettably harmonious. Literally. Musical theater is a big part of Natalie’s life, and with a wedding party that shared the same talents and love for performing they all joined in during the ceremony recessional playing percussion and dancing down the aisle to ‘I Choose You’ by Sara Bareilles. The joyous vibes from their ceremony at the historic Annaberg Ruins carried through to their reception at The Waterfront Bistro.

Soft peach and white roses with accents of mint and gold looked so elegant in all the flower arrangements. The dinner tables had subtle mint touches in the ribbon and menus while the ocean views remained the focal point. All the paper details were designed by Scott, who is a senior art director. Even the adorable welcome bags had Scott’s creative touch and the guests loved them! We look forward to seeing what the future holds for these talented, creative newlyweds!

Natalie and Scott’s wedding week started with beach days, boat trips and welcome parties and ended with a cheerful wedding celebration that left guests smiling and dancing all the way home. The evening was full of delicious food, surprise performances, tropical cocktails, and lots of dancing! Love was in the air and it was felt by all; simply beautiful.

Photography: Lindsay Vann | Videography: Refractive Films | Coordination: Mary Bartolucci And Leah Burris | Floral Design: Jessica Aubain | Wedding Cake: Queen Of Tarts | Ceremony Venue: Annaberg Ruins | Reception Venue: The Waterfront Bistro | Hair And Makeup: Grapevine Salon | DJ: Adonis Morton | Groom's Shoes: Digbys, Banana Republic | Groom's Suit: Ludlow, J Crew | Boating Day: Cinnamon Bay Charters | Bridal Belt: Birnbaum And Bullock | Bridal Gown: Birnbaum And Bullock | Bridal Shoes: Apple Dance Shoes | Bridemaid Dresses: Weddington Way | Bridemaid Jewelry: Nina Kuna, Kea Loho Jewelry | Bridesmaid Belts: Lovelikestyle | Cake Topper: Better Off Wed | Flower Girl Dress: ANKO Design | Groom's Tie: The Tie Bar | Groomsmen Suits: Calvin Klein | Invitation Caligraphy: TucciCursive | Invitation Letterpress: Bowne And Co Stationers | Welcome Party: Motu Bar

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Coral Bahamas Destination Wedding

As those winter blues start to sneak in, this island affair couldn’t have come at a better time. It’s a wedding from the lens of KT Merry, and at the center of it all happens to be top model, Amy Lemons and her love, Taylor. It’s a boho-style, toes-in-the-sand kind of day, and thanks to the help of Little Island Design the whole shebang was planned to perfection. See more for yourself right this way.

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Over the last 15 years, Amy Lemons has established herself as a top model gracing the covers of various Vogue’s, Haper’s Bazaar, Elle, and Marie Claire to name a few and shot with some of the most prestigious photographers of all time, such as Steven Meisel, Mario Testino, and Bruce Weber. It wasn’t long before she was shooting campaigns for Calvin Klein, Louis Vuitton, Versace, Abercrombie, Ralph Lauren and more. It became evident that Amy was the new “it girl” and well on her way to becoming a household name. As a self- confessed tomboy and small town girl from Richmond, Virginia her life had truly been quite the fairytale.

In 2007 Amy knew there was more for her to achieve. Deciding to take a brief hiatus from modeling Amy went back to pursue her education, graduating with a B.A. degree in History from UCLA. It was during this time she began to place an emphasis on her future and how she could utilize her success of the past decade to give back and advocate for other girls coming into the spotlight after her. Returning to the modeling world in 2010, she started to work with the Model Alliance, a non- profit organization working for Models’ rights in the workplace. This sense of balance ultimately drew her out of the fast paced lifestyle of New York and Los Angeles and back to her simplistic way of life back in Charlottesville, Virginia. It was here her life would change forever as she met her fiancé, Taylor Suttoon.

The couple was introduced by Amy’s best childhood friend at a Christmas party in 2010. Their mutual love of the outdoors, sports and dogs contributed to a relationship that developed quickly. Taylor proposed in 2012 and Amy said “yes” as their two dogs approvingly looked on. It was this moment that the fairytale came full circle and her life was complete.

Taylor an outdoorsman and advocate for environmental issues grew up in Charlottesville and attended The University of Virginia. Now working for his family’s oil business, he truly is the perfect balance to her picture perfect life.

Amy and Taylor were married on May 25, 2013 on Harbour Island, a tiny island off the North East Coast of North Eleuthera Island in the Bahamas. Amy first fell in love Harbour Island on a fashion shoot for Victoria Secrets with the acclaimed Mario Testino and dreamed of a future wedding on its pink sand beaches. The small island navigated only by golf cart, is the picturesque scene for the couple. The theme of the upscale beach escape is one of relaxing romance. Inspired by the pink and gold colored sand and blue/green colors of the ocean the wedding colors were
coral, turquoise, and gold.

The weekend began on Wednesday night when approximately 40 guests arrived for the long Memorial Day weekend. On Thursday, the men took off on chartered boats fishing for bonefish in the surrounding waters of Harbour Island, while the ladies enjoyed a luncheon/pool party at the Lemons’ private house, The Fig Tree.

After a day on the beach, the rehearsal dinner on Friday night for all attending guests took place at the Rock House Hotel and Restaurant. The resort was previously owned by Versace’s builder Jay Wallace Tut and is a perfect example of the island’s laid back shabby chic style. The event took up the entire lower terrace of the restaurant overlooking the harbor.

On the big day Amy wore an elegant yet ethereal gown by Claire Pettibone to pull the entire mood together.

Amy and Taylor were married on the beach in front of the Ocean View Club at sunset. Amy’s father, Justice Donald Lemons of the Virginia Supreme Court, married the couple in association with a Bahamian Anglican priest. The wedding was orchestrated by Ben Simmons of Little Island Designs. Ben is a native of Harbour Island and known for producing beautiful beach weddings. His mother, a Cordon Blue trained chef, works with him in their upscale menu and food preparation and owns the trendiest store on the island, Miss May’s. Ben specializes in pop-up wedding receptions on the beach incorporating the natural inspiration of the setting and using driftwood, conch shells, weathered furniture, tents with chandeliers and local flowers such as tuberous, lilies and birds of paradise to create a warm and comfortable outdoor atmosphere. The reception and dinner offered family style servings of local seafood such as Conch Beignets, local snapper with papaya salsa, and lobster. The open bar featured signature cocktails, the Dark and Stormy (dark rum and ginger beer) picked by the groom and Patron Mojitos, selected by the bride. Barefoot guests danced to live music and ended the evening around a bonfire.

The fashion forward guests, including close friends and top models Sara Ziff and Maggie Riser, partook in what will be one of the endearing and romantic experiences two people can share. For Amy what once was a magical fairytale is now a dream come true.

From Ben Simmons of Little Island Design… Destination weddings are challenging at the best of times..we do twenty a year or so and there is always that little challenge that bites at your comfort zone…So when Amy began throwing around terms like gypset, haute hippie, boho chic I was a little nervous. Harbour Island is three miles long by half a mile wide and not exactly a bustling metropolis with rental options. None the less we began to piece together a story and when I finally got to met Taylor and Amy, I wasn’t the slightest bit worried. Such a lovely couple – beautiful and down to earth.

Amy was set on sophisticated yet laid back affair that was deep in romance and soul yet unrestrained in convention. The design components were broken down into details that communicated a sophisticated vintage style, bohemian or hippy-ish feel and rugged textural carefree experience. Of course we opted for beach event, with the always impractical but enduring hope for tent less reception.

For a vintage sophistication we hunted for gold or brass – I recently smuggled a bunch vintage brass taper holders back from Ireland so I excited to have an opportunity to use them. I also happened to have collection of vintage gold Thai Cutlery with rose wood handles which were a perfect for the tables. I generally hate anything plastic, but we had gold acrylic chargers and so they completed our place setting.

For a hippy, bohemian feel we decided that musical instruments might a interesting and unique detail to incorporate. My family has a small hotel that neighbors the local school. Earlier on they and inspired by a limited budget they purchased all the broken instruments they could on the island to decorate the Hotel. 30 years of salt spray had weathered them wonderfully and so we placed them in the center of each table with pops of peonies and other small decorative elements.

We were of course worried about the weather and in the end threw up one of our sail cloth tents but in fact the weather was perfect on the day. Tailor and Amy used our old boat for pictures and it turn out wonderfully. The biggest scare was two days before the wedding when a loose frisby chipped one of Tailors front teeth…Dentists can be as be hard to come by as vintage props on a small island. Luck was with us though and one was around when we needed him.

It was a wonderful celebration, an incredible couple, captured beautifully by an amazing photographer.

Photography: KT Merry | Invitations: Sea Fan Design | Wedding Bands: Andrew Minton | Groom's Attire: Perry Ellis | Ceremony Music: Rocky + Ersly | Bride's Gown: Claire Pettibone | Bride's Reception Dress: Alexander Wang | Bride's Sandals: Monolo Blahnik | Ceremony And Reception Location: Near The Ocean View Club | Flower Girl Dress: Jcrew Kids | Rehearsal Dinner Venue: Rock House | Wedding Designer And Planner: Ben Simmons Of Little Island Design

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Intimate Turks and Caicos Wedding

Between the approaching cold weather and my current honeymoon research, I’m swooning over every beach photo I see. Then this wedding came across my desk and I had to stop everything. From the ocean views to the beautiful couple, this Turks and Caicos wedding has me sold. Natalie Watson captured every seaside smile and I’ll be obsessing over this gallery as I bundle up with, once again, another blanket.

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From Natalie WatsonThis wedding was a very sweet and intimate celebration with only 20 guests….and I especially loved the bride’s getting ready robe! 

From The Bride… Our friends and family live all over the U.S. and Canada, so it was going to be a destination wedding for our guests no matter where we got married. With that in mind, we thought there couldn’t be a better place to bring them than Turks & Caicos. We got married on a Thursday in order to “get the wedding out of the way,” leaving us the rest of the weekend to have some stress-free fun with our family and friends.

The main thing we wanted was for our wedding to feel intimate. Our goal was to have the reception feel more like a casual dinner party on the beach rather than an event at a big resort. To do that, we kept things relatively low key. We used only one long table with simple bud vases of white hydrangeas. Dinner was served family-style. Our favors were bags of s’mores, which everyone roasted at the end of the night before many of them ran into the ocean – some in their wedding attire!

Photography: Natalie Watson | Wedding Dress: Anna Meier ~ Ulla-Maija | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Two Birds Bridesmaid | Hair And Makeup: Shenique Higgs | Best Man's Suit: Jcrew | Bride's Earrings: Ippolita | Bride's Robe: Girl With A Serious Dream | Matron Of Honor's Dress: Two Birds | Wedding And Reception: Seven Stars

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Romantic Harbour Island Wedding

This destination dream isn’t just another gorgeous wedding captured by Caroline Fontenot Photographer, it’s much more than that. Surrounded by Little Island Design lush blooms and Daddy D beats, these Ocean View Club sweeties wed in true island style. From Bahamian inspired local BBQ, to the lovely libations on the lower terrace followed by a bonfire on the beach, every moment is magical and you can see it all here.

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From the Bride… We fell in love with Harbour Island immediately. It is secluded and luxurious and somehow feels instantly familiar. The island is rich with vibrant architecture and friendly locals. The pink sand beaches are breathtaking and we couldn’t get enough of the perfectly clear and turquoise waters. Everyone is very friendly, and is quick to point you towards their favorite place for Conch Salad by the bay, or share their secrets for making (or simply enjoying) a good Goombay Smash. Fresh seafood is a favorite of ours, and it is a staple on every menu. We met so many charming people on our fist visit: Ben and Charlie and Andy of course, but also Claudine, who spoiled Jay with fresh English muffins each morning, and a couple from Europe that has been holidaying on the island since they were both children, as well as an elderly couple that come for their anniversary each year. The love that people have for this place is infectious. We felt like old regulars after our first visit, and knew this place would play host so wonderfully to our family and friends. We wanted our wedding celebration to also be an unforgettable vacation for our guests. The experience we had on our first visit as a couple was wholly enjoyable and we were thrilled to share our special island with the people we love.

The Ocean View Club is a slice of bohemian heaven. We instantly felt at home at Ben and Charlie’s labor of love. We invited our guests to come down to the island on the Wednesday before our wedding so that they could make a vacation of the trip. We wanted this trip to be special for everyone and thought how wonderful it would be for us all to stay together. We decided to rent the entire hotel, which made for easy planning for our guests. The Ocean View Club is the perfect size for our party, with quiet rooms in the main house for both of our parents, smaller guest suites adjacent to a beach view terrace for our young friends and siblings, and private cottage retreats for a few couples and also for ourselves. The main house feels like a home itself, with a large living area with plenty of comfortable seating and tables large enough for jigsaw puzzles and dominos. The kitchen is always open to everyone, and became a kind of gathering place each morning, the way our own kitchen does at home. The honor bar by the patio was a huge hit with our guests, allowing us the luxury of having a fully stocked bar where self-service is encouraged. The staff at The Ocean View is accommodating and friendly, and atmosphere of the place encourages enjoyment of both the beautiful island and the wonderful company we shared. We are so grateful that Ben and Charlie opened their arms and their hearts to those we love. Our favorite memories will always be at The Ocean View Club.

We hosted a welcoming supper on Wednesday evening on the terrace, kicking off the beginning of our memorable trip. Our DJ, Devon aka Daddy D, actually caught the Tuna we were served the morning of our arrival. Our days after were spent playing bocce on the beach and floating lazily for hours in the ocean, Kaliks always in hand. We invited everyone to The Landing for supper on Thursday, served on the romantic patio for sunset on Harbour Island’s harbor. Dancing and shenanigans followed at many of the island’s disco techs, with a bit of night swimming to end the night.

Our parents hosted a Bahamian inspired BBQ of local flavors and libations on the lower terrace after our rehearsal, followed by a bonfire on the beach. Jay’s father gave a toast that everyone will always remember, and Lindsey successfully sabered a bottle of champagne to the excitement of everyone. We ate until we couldn’t, and enjoyed the company of the group with a seriously hilarious game of charades. No one wanted the night to end.

Saturday morning we all enjoyed a bit of beach before the girls retired for an afternoon of pretty pampering and primping. We decided to take our photographs as a couple before our ceremony, jaunting around the island on our golf cart, drinking champagne and sharing many wonderful moments with our photographer, Caroline, and her husband Mark. Our ceremony was held on the main terrace of the Ocean View Club, presided by a dear friend of ours. We wrote our ceremony together, maintaining many of the traditional rites, but also adding our own anecdotes and flair. We hosted a cocktail party directly after, entertained by each other and a duo of local musicians. Afterwards, our beach reception took place under a gorgeous white tent. Ben and Charlie created an elegantly simple tablescape adjacent to a custom dance floor. And boy did we dance! As the evening slipped into night, we migrated between the dance floor and the whimsical living room created around a bonfire. The scene was truly breathtaking. We would not have changed a single detail. As a special surprise for Jay, we spoiled our guests with an English muffin bar at the end of the night, as a late night snack for everyone before we departed. We exited along a lantern lit path from the scene, turning for one last long look to soak in the event that was a celebration in every way we had envisioned.

Photography: Caroline Fontenot Photographer | Floral Design: Little Island Design | Wedding Dress: Elizabeth Dye | Food: Little Island Design | Makeup Artist: Suzanna Harati, Monarch Beauty Atlanta | Hair Stylist: Suzanna Harati, Monarch Beauty Atlanta | DJ: Daddy D | Bow Tie: Social Primer | Groom's Attire: J.Crew | Groom's Jacket: Brooks Brothers | Wedding Venue: The Ocean View Club | Groom's Custom Needlepoint Loafers: ByPaige | Groom's Shirt: Ledbury | Veil: Twigs & Honey | Welcome Dinner: The Landing

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Coral + Gray Jamaica Wedding

Winter is upon us New Englanders so I’m officially in hibernation mode. For the next several months I’ll be daydreaming of warm weather and beaches, starting off with this beautiful wedding in Jamaica. Under the guidance of Travel & Events With Style and captured by Dwayne Larson Photography, this celebration has me soaking up every single seaside photo and craving more.

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From The Bride… Sean and I wanted to chose a destination that would reflect us as a couple – Sean has been brought up with a Jamaican influence and it has shaped his life since he was a child. When we decided we wanted a beach wedding it seemed like a natural choice for us. Plus it gave everyone an excuse to escape one of the coldest cities in Canada!

As a graphic designer, I started with the stationery design, and the everything else seemed to roll out from there. We wanted our wedding to evoke simple, casual elegance and compliment the gorgeous natural backdrop of Negril. Our color palette was coral, greys, white and a light seafoam green. I based our invitations off a casual handdrawn script I made of our names, and since it was a beach wedding I chose to incorporate stripes to give it a nautical feeling. I chose coral as our main color because it felt tropical and I knew it would look great with the clear blue water as a backdrop. I had custom rubber stamps made with a graphic of the island with a heart overlaying Negril to customize various items. I had the main invitation letter pressed, and tied the pieces together with grey and white bakers twine.

Once the invitations were tackled I got to work planning craft nights with my friends to ensure we had decor that reflected us as a couple. One of our favourite things to do as a couple is to go to see live music, and travel to music festivals. My maid of honour found vintage sheet music at a thrift store that we used to make table runners, and pinwheels to label the bride and groom chairs. We made a backdrop for the guest table out of garland made with music sheets and paper in the color palette I chose. I chose to incorporate shells to tie in the beach theme, and made boutonnieres for the wedding party and family with starfish, grass and music sheets.

We had our ceremony on the beach with the waves crashing just feet away from us. We wanted an intimate feel for the ceremony. The aisle was lined with white lanterns with ribbons flowing from the chairs, and flowing white curtains on bamboo framed the altar. For our guestbook, we really wanted something that would encourage guests to write something more personal, so we made a book with various questions for guests to answer on each page.

Making sure our friends and family had fun at the reception was really important to us, and our choices for music reflected that. We had prepared our own playlist with a wide range of motown, soul, reggae, funk and hip hop, and had spin the bottle dance offs. A highlight of the night was when guests wanted us to kiss, we made them hula hoop. To end the night we set off Chinese Lanterns over the ocean.

My friend Dwayne Larson did our photography, and my maid of honour who is lead photographer with Victoria Anne Photography couldn’t help but snap a few shots for us when she wasn’t fulfilling her attendant duties. It was so great having two people that we feel comfortable with there to capture our day.

I cannot express enough about how much our wedding planner Jaime Valdes- Riench did for us. Planning an event from so far away adds a lot of stress and she made the process unbelievably simple and stress free – she kept us on track with decisions, gave us honest feedback, coordinated meetings with hard-to-nail down vendors and seamlessly planned the flow and sequence of our event.

Photography: Dwayne Larson Photography | Floral Design: Taiflora | Wedding Dress: Justin Alexander | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Beach Set Up: Riu Tropical Bay | Invitations And Stationery: Jaime Alissa Design | Photography - Assistance: Victorian Anne Photography | Wedding Planning And Travel Agent: Travel & Events With Style

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