Whenever we feature gorgeous destination weddings I always want to jet off immediately and visit the gorgeous location. La Bastide de Gordes in Provence, France is no exception, with M & J Photography capturing the gorgeous views over the valley and the Luberon mountains as well as all the love and pretty of Stefanie & Ravi's elegant outdoor wedding perfectly. The picture of Ravi wiping away a tear as Stefanie arrives in her gorgeous satin fishtail bridal gown is priceless, as is the one of them giggling down the aisle after they are pronounced husband and wife in front of their family and friends. Also can we just take a moment to appreciate that gorgeous reception set up & florals, with those gorgeous chair backs being made from sentimental pieces of lace from Stefanie's Grandma. I am literally swooning as I type, as everything about this wedding so heart wrenchingly beautiful.
The CeremonyStefanie the Bride: We had an outdoor ceremony that we customised and had officiated by a friend. He interviewed our friends and family before writing his portion. The ceremony was a complete reflection of who we are as individuals, where we came from, and our joint vision for our shared future.
PhotographerWe met Jonny and Morgane at a wedding the prior summer and once we were set on getting married abroad we wanted them there to document our day. Their style is effortless and natural.
VenueTo us, Provence is the most romantic place in the world – a place where our relationship feels renewed every time we visit. As well, it’s peaceful, personal qualities are characteristics we expected our friends and family to appreciate as much as we did.
HoneymoonWe spent the week leading up to our wedding in Gordes with family and friends. Following the wedding we stayed one night in Bonnieux, France at Bastide de Capelongue followed by a night in Marseille, France and a night in Barcelona, Spain. Our whole wedding week was a honeymoon. We look forward to an “official” honeymoon for our one year anniversary, location TBD but Cape Verde and Kyoto are currently top of the list.
Bridal GownMy dress was MZ2 by Mark Zunino for Kleinfeld. It was a cream satin mermaid dress with illusion plunging neckline and flower appliqué. I loved it.
AccessoriesI purchase my veil from an Etsy shop call LuxuriaFata. Me and my norther-in-law hand dyed it to match my dress. It has two tiers with a beautifully embroidered lace trim. I also wore a garter that was gifted to my mother and is a family heirloom. The present kept coming in the shape of a fabulous pair of Saint Laurent shoes from my sister/maid of honor.
BridesmaidSince I only had one attendant, I let my sister choose her own dress. The BCBG Maxazria she chose was a perfect complement to my dress.
Grooms AttireRavi wore a custom tuxedo with navy jacket and black slacks from Tom James complimented with accessories from J Crew, cuff links from Tiffany & Co. and watch from Rolex.
FlowersLaetitia came highly recommended by blogs and contacts in the region. Upon initially inquiry she indicated she was unavailable, but ultimately offered to change her personal vacation schedule to accommodate our wedding. Flowers were selected based on what was local and in season. Purple was included to compliment the maid of honor’s dress and as homage to lavender season. The rest was a collaborative vision of the florist and us. Laetitia incorporated lace from my great grandmother into the floral décor applied to the bride and grooms reception chairs.
CakeNeither of us have a sweet tooth so we opted against a cake in favour of a dessert table full of French staples , including our favorite, crème brulee. As a gift, our venue presented us with a macaroon tower complete with sparklers as a surprise!
CateringAll food was prepared by the chef at the Bastide
Menu: Appetizer of - Mini eggplants - Artichokes - White onions - Piquillos (small red peppers) - Small zucchinis or zucchini flowers And choice of risotto with spring onion and vegetables or rack of lamb followed by a cheese course.
DecorThe tables were decorated with centerpeices in the middle of each of the two rectangular family style tables, a top white table cloths with homemade linen runners (by my mother in law) accompanied with plenty of smaller arrangements and candles along the centre of each long table. Monogrammed china from the Bastide and homemade place cards adorned with local olive tree branches were used. We also had homemade programs printed by the Ravi and adorned with local lavender sprigs (picked locally by our friends) made by the me and fans favours.
EntertainmentThe Bastide provided a harpist for the ceremony…entrance with exit songs selected by us when designing the ceremony. Thomas Colonet provided the music for the wedding and DJ’d the reception.
VisionOur vision in short was to celebrate the love we have for one another with close family and friends and to commit to honouring each other’s individuality and specialness for the rest of our lives and to do so in a place surrounded by beautiful natural vistas, to eat good food, and for the experience to be the culmination of week spent with loved ones.
SurprisesProvence is known as being a region of the world where it rains very little, particularly during the summer and it just so happened that it was supposed to rain on our wedding day. That morning, the valley was cloaked in fog and it had rained before we woke, but before long the clouds parted and the sun arrived just in time for the ceremony.
Help & DIYRavi did the venue research and ultimately identified the Bastide. He vetted the DJ and made the play list. We spent most of our effort on the ceremony and did that together with our officiant. There was really no delegation – we made joint decisions and were both involved in everything (except the wedding dress). My mom was a sounding board for everything. My mom, sister, and friend Marie vetted hundreds of dresses and collectively visited 20+ bridal salons. My sister is a makeup guru and assisted with selecting Kelly, the makeup artist.
Special MomentsRavi the Groom: Seeing each other for the first time after spending the night apart was very emotional. Stefanie the Bride: Standing together overlooking the Luberon valley during our ceremony and reflecting on why we were there and all of the people who were there with us.
AdviceTake the perspectives of friends and family, but ultimately follow your heart and focus on each other. It will not be easy, but at the end of the day, when the ceremony is progress, all anyone will care about is how happy the bride and groom are. Ultimately, you should too!
Bridal Gown: MZ2 by Mark Zunino for Kleinfeld | Veil: LuxuriaFata via Etsy | Bridal Shoes: Saint Laurent | Groom Bespoke Suit: Tom James | Grooms Shirt & Tie: J Crew | Grooms Shoes: J.M Westin | Cufflinks: Tiffany & Co. | Maid of Honor Dress: BCBGMaxazria | Maid of Honor Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Venue: La Bastide de Gordes | Flowers: Fleurs d’atelier | Invitations: Minted | Thank-you's: Wedding Paper Divas | Entertainment: Thomas Tusseune | Bridal Makeup: Kelly McClain