After two years of planning, this gorgeous couple tied the knot in an elegant destination wedding weekend with their closest friends and family in the most romantic city in the world – Paris! Loli Events coordinated every thoughtful detail, from the intimate ceremony to the indoor reception that looks straight out of Disney’s Beauty and The Beast. Wild Blossom Flowers provided lush bouquets and heavenly arrangements, decorating their special day in white pillowy peonies and blush roses. Lucky for us, we get to live vicariously through the gorgeous full gallery captured perfectly by Oliver Fly Photography. To top it all off, keep on reading for the bride’s wise advice that every future bride-to-be needs to hear.
What did you envision your wedding being prior to planning ?
We had been engaged for two years prior to getting married which sounds like a long time, but in retrospect it gave us the time we needed to figure out exactly what we wanted to do—which was to host the trip of a lifetime for not only ourselves, but also our guests. We had heard that your wedding day flies by, and before you know it it’s over. Keeping that in mind we decided to do a destination wedding where we would have a few days to celebrate with family and friends leading up to and after our big day. Our must haves as foodies were food worth remembering and authentic cocktails. We also knew we wanted there to be lush greenery perhaps in a garden, as many flowers as possible, candlelight, music to keep everyone up on their feet, and a ceremony that truly spoke to us as a couple.
Why did you choose to do a Destination Wedding and why did you decide to choose Paris and La Maison des Polytechniciens as your final choice ?
My husband surprised me with a trip to Paris where we wound up having our engagement pictures taken! One very early morning we met our photographer, Oliver Fly, at the Trocadero and he not only gave us the most memorable experience, but filled us in on what a wedding in Paris could be like. We loved the idea and were quickly introduced to the woman who made it all possible, Coralie Prats, with LoliEvents. We must have toured over ten venues together and Coralie saved the best for last, La Maison des Polytechniciens. Upon arriving there was such a warm and friendly feel to the place as if we had been there before. It was comfortable yet so beautiful.
What was your color palette and your style vision ?
Our color palette was white and blush for a classic and timeless décor. Our venue had such beautiful, intricate gold walls that we wanted to keep our decor simple and play off the Parisian ambiance.
What unique elements or DIY details did you include?
Our custom napkins from On Three Designs were our only way of bringing our two Bengal cats to Paris with us! They were a special touch, but our favorite detail of the wedding weekend was replacing a welcome bag with a welcome boat cruise on the Seine.
What was your favorite moment ?
We asked one of our best friends, Dave Mathews, to officiate our wedding ceremony and he left us speechless. Dave customized the ceremony to speak to us as a couple taking everyone through what we loved about one another to moving in together, and eventually getting engaged. He spoke from the heart about the bond of marriage and facilitated a hand fasting made up of different color ribbons symbolizing purity, fidelity, growth and strength. The knot remains and we will cherish that forever.
What was your favorite detail ?
Our music! It’s always a hard choice deciding between a band or a DJ, but we were able to incorporate a little of both choosing a string quartet, JAM Trio, for the ceremony and cocktail hour and ultimately deciding on a DJ for the reception. Having been to countless weddings where you hear the same wedding music over and over again we were excited to break from the norm and play the music that mattered to us most. Having including different songs our guests weren’t expecting to hear it instantly set the tone for a unique and inspired wedding. From JAM Trio playing Feel It Still by Portugal The Man for our recessional music to us choosing Declan Donovan “Fallen So Young” as our first dance song we loved how customized our music felt. Everyone danced to Kanye West, Loud Luxury, and The Weeknd until the early morning.
Tell us about your flowers, your gown, your hair, your favors for your guests, your cake, etc…and others details that’s make your wedding so unique.
We love how French weddings are so genuine and center on the dinner reception. After cocktail hour we kept the wine flowing through a dinner full of speeches. The tables were filled with gold rimmed plates and glasses, white stem silverware, overflowing garden roses and an abundance of candles. The corner intricacies of the room were lit up and at the very center sat Steve in his Zegna tux and myself in my Pronovias Ribelia gown. After dinner came to an end we were surprised with a croquembouche lit up by sparklers and two glasses of champagne. We followed Johnny Balik’s “I Need It” down to the “party” cave where we danced the night away under a ceiling of balloons.
What is one piece of advice that you could give brides-to-be ?
Make sure to take time for just the two of you throughout the day whether it be to sneak away after the ceremony and digest your vows, or pull each other aside and take in the room full of people celebrating you. Another piece of advice we found helpful was making sure to stay together so we wouldn’t have different experiences.
If you decide to go the destination wedding route, or even still with a wedding in the US, find vendors you mesh with. We were so lucky to not only love the work of our vendors, but to consider them our friends. We respected their opinions and partnership and in return they delivered us the most perfect day. It was truly enjoyable and an honor for us to work with them all. It made our day that much more fun. Trine Juel made me feel like the most beautiful woman in the world not only transforming my skin, but the way I felt. She gave me the perfect brushed out retro waves that gave me much needed pep in my step. Oliver (Oliver Fly Photography) and Guillaume (Studio80Production) made us feel like celebrities all day long behind the camera and in seeing the results we are blown away. Being able to hold onto those pictures and watch our wedding video is so surreal.. you can’t put a price on it! JAM Trio, Le Bar, Wild Blossom, our rehearsal dinner at Astair, and the Maison team made our celebration so special.
The proposal story:
It was the Saturday before Easter 2017 and I set my alarm for earlier than I would have liked on a weekend. I knew it would mean a lot to Steve if I woke up early enough to grab a coffee in New York City and wander around like we lived there. Little did I know how much the day would actually mean to me. We headed into the city to grab brunch at one of our favorite French spots, Claudette, but upon realizing we were the first ones there we took a stroll down 5th avenue and took a pit stop in Artizia. There was a geranium silk bomber jacket in the window that actually caught Steve’s eye. While I piled my wrists with hangers Steve was checking out with the jacket and flashing the ring to the cashier as she tried to slow play the check out. He whisked me out of the store before I could make it to the dressing room and back to Claudette we went. It was a brisk day and Steve kept his hands tightly in his windbreaker.. something I didn’t realize until we replayed the day back. At brunch I ate my eggs benedict, Steve’s pancakes, a shared charcuterie plate, and a basket of pastries.. accompanied by a few mimosas. Steve claimed the espresso he had turned his stomach and he was glued to his phone because he was “dealing with last minute tax questions from his accountant”. Instead of exploring around the rest of the day as planned I fell into a relaxed, very full state as we drove home planning out our sleepy day of movies and Netflix. We sang along to all of our favorite songs and when we got close to home Steve asked me to try on my new jacket (apparently my leather jacket wasn’t ideal for engagement pictures haha). Pulling into our driveway I noticed the shade to the right of our front door was pulled down to the floor, which was unusual since we always left it up for our bengal cat, Theo, to watch out. Steve saw this and in panicking threw my purse and previous jacket onto the front yard, grabbed my hand, and said “I have a surprise for you!” “Is it another kitty?!” I replied in anticipation. We both laughed and as soon as I saw through the front door to all our friends and family I knew.. this was it..the moment I always dreamed of was here. In front of Steve’s family in from Michigan and Maryland, my family, and our closest friends Steve got down on one knee and asked me if I would marry him. I said “yes please” and we spent the rest of the afternoon celebrating at our house. He completely caught me off guard! Later that night we all went to a big Italian dinner and the surprises continued with more friends. It was the best day of our lives, until our wedding day two years later.
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Photographer: Oliver Fly Photography | Videographer: Studio 80 | Wedding Planner: Loli Events | Floral Design: Wild Blossom Flowers | Dress : Pronovias | Catering: Maison Des Polytechniciens | Bride Shoes: Louboutin | Cocktails: Le Bar | Getting Ready place: Private Parisian Apartment | Groom Shoes: Louboutin | Groom Tuxedo: Ermeneglildo Zegna | Hair & Make Up: Trine Juel | Invitation & Day of Papers: Pale Press London | Maison: Maison Des Polytechniciens | Musicians: Jazz Around Midnight | Napkins: On Three | Rehearsal dinner: Astair Paris | Ring Box: Je Promis | Welcome event: Bateau Mon Paris