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St. Thomas Destination Wedding

If ever there was a place primed for a perfect destination wedding…I’m pretty sure St. Thomas would be it. Because you need next to nothing to make your celebration spectacular. And while this bride layered on the turquoise and coral touches – inspired from the beaches themselves – the backdrop alone was enough for us to fall in love. Even more photos from Crown Images right here!

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Summer
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Beach

From the bride…We were going for a vintagey-beachy, relaxed elegance kind of vibe. We went with a lot of turquoise blue (bridesmaid dresses, mason jars for the ceremony aisle & the centerpieces, mother of the bride dress & turquoise gingham cocktail umbrellas I got from France) and coral (my shoes, troy’s socks & tie, the flowers, the ringbearers ties, the flower girls flower crowns, cocktail straws, matchbooks, the lace & burlap table runners and really pale peachy flowers on my dress). Basically, I went crazy on etsy. I actually didn’t realize how vintage-y my dress and hair looked until I saw your pictures. I loved how it all came together! It was a last minute to decision to have the flower girls & ringbearers barefoot for the wedding. I loved the kids playing in the water during & right after the wedding.

Music is also really important to me so that’s why we had the guitar player for the wedding (I walked down the aisle to “Lovely Day” by Bill Withers). We also had a steal drum player for the cocktail hour & dj for the reception. Our wedding song was “I Got You” by Jack Johnson.

Since my guests were coming a long way & using up vacation time to come to my wedding, I wanted them to have as great a time as possible. So that’s why we also had a welcome party the night before and a beach party the day after the wedding. Lots of great food & great drinks by Passion Fruit caterers for all 3 events.

Photography: Crown Images | Wedding Dress: St Pucchi | Catering: Passion Fruit Chefs | Groom\'s Attire: Hugo Boss | Hair and Makeup : Sugar and Spice Artistry | Music: Chris Robberts | Planning: Island Bliss Weddings | Villa: Sand Dollar Estate | Wedding Venue: Sand Dollar Estate

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St. Thomas Wedding from Clary Pfeiffer

After my sister came back from a recent trip to St. Thomas gushing with enthusiasm, I made a mental note to add it to my travel list. And now this wedding has come along and sealed that deal. St. Thomas is officially moving up to my #1 must-see destination and it has everything to do with these gorgeous images by Clary Pfeiffer. We’re talking crystal clear water views and peony filled details crafted by Janelle Scott. St. Thomas, I think I love you. See it all right here.

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BeachVilla

From the Bride…Jon and I were high school sweethearts, together for 10 years before he proposed on top of Old Rag Mountain. Jon insisted on going camping even though it was freezing and even snowed at night! We were supposed to go hiking with a couple friends the next morning but because of some bumps along the way, were two hours late meeting them. They had gone up thinking we left them and we raced up the steep 9 mile hike to try and catch them. Eventually we caught them, exhausted and numb from the cold. When we reached the summit, I saw my dog, Eden, running towards me. Very confused, I looked further and saw my sister, best friend, and other close friends and family. I still didn’t know what was happening and asked them why they would come here and not tell us! It was not until Jon removed the ring tied around Eden’s neck and got down on one knee, that I realized what was happening. It was the most perfect surprise.

We wanted our wedding day to be fun and relaxed, surrounded by our close friends and family, so what better way to do that then to get away to the beautiful island of St. Thomas! Through all our years together, some of our favorite memories are our vacations together, always to a different place. So this would be no different, we would choose a new destination once again. I knew this would be difficult, so having Janelle as our wedding planner was the peace of mind I would need throughout the planning to make it all happen.

I wish I could say I had a specific vision when planning my wedding, in fact I think my vision changed several times throughout the course. I would read wedding blogs all day and every time I saw a beautiful wedding I changed my mind again. I would worry and worry and second guess myself after every decision. One thing I knew was that I wanted my wedding to look like a dream. Of course, a very hard vision to explain to anyone but myself. When we found Clary, I knew that she would make this come true through her gorgeous photographs that always make me feel like I’m floating on a cloud. The Sand Dollar Estate was an amazing venue to make this dream come true, perfectly situated on the most beautiful Magens Bay Beach. We knew right away this was where we wanted our wedding to be. The view would be incredible from the ceremony on the private beach to the reception on the pool deck. A lot of the design was thanks to my amazing sister who had the patience to sift through my many, many ideas and create my invitations, signs, menus, and name cards. My husband’s passion is food, so we were so grateful to have Ched who went above and beyond to create a menu that we loved.

Now, one thing about me is that I wouldn’t take no for an answer when it came to achieving what I wanted (once I figured out what that was) and no matter how difficult it seemed to pull off, it just had to be. We found WoW Events to set up the lighting for us, which no one had ever done before at that venue. I bought the chandelier myself and shipped it down there. I rented the linens from home and lugged the 80 pounds of linens over there with me! Or, my husband did at least. That is one thing about him, is that he always just wants to make me happy. So no matter what hurdles seemed to stand in our way whether it be flight delays or storms before the wedding day, I knew that it would be perfect in the end because I have him to stand by me.

Photography: Clary Pfeiffer | Wedding Coordination: Janelle Scott | Ceremony + Reception: Sand Dollar Estate | Cake: Cynthia Portillo | Catering: Ched Sharpless  | Cinematography: Andrew Orleans | Signs: The Primitive Barn | Wedding Dress: Watters | Veil: Maggie Sottero | Bridesmaids Dresses: Lela Rose

Lela Rose and Watters are members of our Look Book. For more information on how members are chosen, click here.
Sand Dollar Estate Wedding by Jules Bianchi Photography

These amazing St. Thomas nuptials by Jules Bianchi Photography are the perfect example of why I l.o.v.e a destination wedding.  I can’t think of anything more romantic than running away together with close friends and family, tying the knot with the ocean as your backdrop and a tropical paradise surrounding you at every turn.  Yes, I think this bride and groom pretty much have it covered.  And with the pretty yellow and blue color palette, stunning bouquets by East End Flowers and a plethora of unique details all designed by the gorgeous bride and planned by Island Bliss Weddings, this is most definitely a destination wedding done oh so very right.  I’ll be in the gallery soaking up all of the lovely, so join me there for even more beachy goodness!

Click here to see the entire gallery of images!

From the Bride… My fiancé and I got engaged on the cliffs of the Italian Rivera at sunset, and as we began describing our wedding day together, we knew that we had to follow suit to the engagement, hosting a wedding in another exotic location away from home.  Both of us are entranced by the ocean, love soft sandy beaches and wanted an intimate affair in a tropical relaxed location.  I grew up in LA where the ocean was always a huge part of my life and he has an undying love for the Caribbean and all that it encompasses.  We picked the Sand Dollar Estate in St. Thomas, USVI, known as the White House of St. Thomas for its view of the famous Magen’s Bay, but mostly for its ability to host a private small wedding with its own beach where the ceremony would take place. We also LOVE sunsets, and have very special moments throughout our relationship during sunset and watching the view from the estate over the water at sunset blew convinced us this was our spot.

Our inspirations morphed into what I was calling “Beach Chic” using more of a romantic, soft casual feel of Shabby Chic playing off the bright turquoise waters of the Caribbean and the “pop” of yellow sunshine. Special details from the day included Michigan “M” Sugar Cookies, as my Husband and friends are avid University of Michigan fans, a Russian Babushka doll next to the guest book in remembrance of my Grandmother and Russian heritage, Chinese parasol’s brought from our current city in San Francisco, Frank Family wine – a favorite of ours from Napa, custom burlap and lace runners made with love from my mother-in-law and other fun items I sourced on Etsy.  All these special items were flown down with us to the island in 6 checked bags!

The day before our wedding day was the first rainfall of the year on St. Thomas, and rare for May.  It poured, all night!  The morning of the wedding, with the storm still looming above us, brought in the tide hiding our private beach where the ceremony was scheduled.  However, we adjusted our plans, the rain held off and we were married outside on the patio overlooking the water.  Even with the beach unavailable for the ceremony, we were luckily able to snap a few shots down on the rocks (without getting an ounce of water on the dress).  Even with the threat of the rain, and the change in plans, it was an amazing day!  My husband too cute, our guests lovely as ever and everything just as we imagined, including a spectacular sunset.

Wedding Photography: Jules Bianchi Photography / Flowers: East End Flowers / Event Design: The Bride / Event Planning: Island Bliss Weddings / Wedding Ceremony + Reception Location: Sand Dollar Estate / Wedding Invitations: Etsy / Wedding Dress: Jenny Lee / Bridesmaid Dresses: Carol Hannah / Makeup + Hair: Sugar & Spice Artistry / Catering: Modern Saute / Wedding Cake: VI Dessert