Sand Dollar Estate Wedding by Jules Bianchi Photography
September 12, 2011

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!












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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