Megan and Chris' wedding can be encapsulated in just two words - Party. Bus. And maybe sunglasses. All right, throw in flamingos too. Let's just say, their wedding (captured beautifully by Aregrayline Photography) looks like the ultimate beach holiday with friends and family. They have the white sandy beaches, the palm trees and tropical marine life, and, of course, the ultimate party bus.
And while they perfectly captured the beach wedding elements, their wedding also has an true elegance. The church where they were married is absolutely stunning, the attire beach classic, and the details Megan added, like the bridesmaid's parasols, give it a splash of color without being over-the-top. Basically, it's Aruba meets a very fun, tasteful couple.
Megan gives us all sorts of details on what it's like planning a destination wedding below - her story about their wedding ceremony and their priest is priceless!
Megan Tells Us About Her Wedding
Tell us about any of the wedding details you did yourself.
Any of the details from the wedding I did myself. The name cards for the table were in the local language papimento. The high top tables on the cocktail hour side and cootie catchers with questions and answers about Chris and I. I ordered them on Etsy. I also put together welcome bags with sun tan lotion, literature about Aruba, candy, snacks, water, playing cards (with our wedding date) and little bottles of Bacardi. I used large canvas tote bags and had custom pins with our wedding date pinned on. I figured if we had them embroidered people would be less likely to re-use them. The pins they could just take off. I also included the itinerary and suggested adventures the guests might want to take part in.
Did your wedding location hold a specific significance to you?
Most people ask us if we got engaged in Aruba and that was why we chose the location. Really my husband Chris has traveled with his family to Aruba many times. The weather is always Sunny and 85 degrees. To me most importantly Aruba was the only Island that we could have a private wedding reception and a Catholic Church ceremony. The reception was on a private island a 5 minute boat ride from the hotel to the island. It was only our guests. Most destination weddings are held on public beaches- so people just walk through- I didn't want that.
What was the most meaningful part of your day?
When I heard Pachebel Canon in D sitting outside of the church as the bridal party walked down the aisle. My father came out and said "it's time!" As the church doors opened I saw Chris standing at the alter, he looked so happy, all my nerves dissipated and a feeling of happiness and overall calmness came over me. (sounds cheesy but it was so true- all day I was nervous running around like a chicken with my head cut off- then it all just came together.
Did anything funny or out of the ordinary happen?
YES! First the music for the church fell through. Chris was frantically running around the morning of the wedding trying to find a replacement. Everyone in Aruba has no sense of urgency- it's all island time. Chris was super stressed and in the end we had to play music, no live music. With all of this stress and craziness Chris lost his tie. It matched the bridesmaids dresses perfectly and we found it in NYC after searching 15-20 stores. He ended up buying a new tie at the Carolina Herrera store underneath the hotel for $200!!!
Also the Catholic Church wedding was a debacle in itself. They did not want to marry us since they didn't know us. Long story short we went over to the Church to beg the only English speaking priest to perform the ceremony. He was also on ISLAND TIME!! came late to the wedding and also forgot my name during the ceremony. He kept referring to me as Chris' Bride. It was quite the experience! Also we did a trash the dress shoot with Erin and Fredrick on the day after the wedding. Chris got the Jeep stuck in the sand- so the shoot was cut short. It was crazy!
Tell us details of the events surrounding the wedding as well.
On Wednesday night all of the guests had arrived. We rented out a pirate ship, Jolly Pirate. It was a sunset sail with rope swing and a lot of Aruban Punch. Everyone had a BLAST, it was a beautiful setting. All those guests who weren't adventurous enough for the pirate ship met us at Moomba beach. It's a restaurant on the beach, where we ate dinner and welcomed all the guests. The following night was the rehearsal dinner. It was on a Boat (Tattoo). Since all guests were from out of town they were all invited to the dinner. That was also a lot of fun.
How did you know your partner was "the one"?
I've known Chris since I was 15 years old. We've been through a lot together. Chris has the ability to make me laugh and makes me so happy. At the end of the day having fun is the best.
Any advice you'd give new brides who are just getting started?
Have a long engagement. Everything goes by so quickly, stop and enjoy the planning. For brides interested in a destination wedding - DO IT! It was like a week long wedding party with all of our friends and family! it was great.
Photographer: Aregreyline photography. Erin and Fredrick were amazing!
Venue: Renaissance Island (Renaissance Hotel)
Dress: Custom- I sketched and had it made- I knew exactly what I wanted.
Shoes: Kate Spade coral sandals to add a pop of color and match the bridesmaid dresses!
Men's Attire: J CREW light grey cotton suit pants and matching vest. We had custom shirts made white with coral on cuffs (matched bridesmaids' dresses)
Catering: Renaissance Hotel - the food was amazing! Multiple guests came up to us to tell us it was the best food they've ever had!
Event Planning: Juney Jones was our wedding coordinator. He helped to arrange everything except for the Church. This was our biggest obstacle. We were so lucky to have a friend that grew up in Aruba (now lives in NY) to call and speak Papimento (Aruban language).
Flowers: Aruba Floral
DJ: DJ Tino