I have a new wedding crush! This is the one you show your friends - you know, the ones that are dreaming/ hoping/wavering about getting married somewhere warm, some destination, but they're not quite sure where. Because this dreamy bit of laid-back Islamorada gorgeousness from Kallima Photography - with getting-ready perfection at Cheeca and the big event at Pierre's - will make for a very easy decision.
Tiffany and Jay wanted a wedding that was first and foremost a celebration: of their commitment to one another, of their own own unique personalities, and of all the reasons they love South Florida. That vision translated into a laid-back affair just south of their hectic daily life in Miami. They had three requirements for the day: (1) a fantastic meal; (2) incredible cocktails, and (3) "a band that would draw even Grandma to the dance floor."
Tiffany, a native of Miami Springs, and Jay, from Rhode Island, met at the Miami law firm where they are both attorneys. I usually paraphrase this part, but I just had to share the story in their own (hilarious) words: Tiffany recalls first meeting Jay when interviewing for a summer associate/intern position, when the firm hosted a "mixer" for associates and interviewees. Jay made an impression; he had mustard on his tie, made inappropriately ribald jokes, and spoke frankly about life at a large, national law firm. (Unfortunately, Jay does not recall speaking with Tiffany at this event.) Jay recalls first meeting Tiffany in his office, after she had been hired when she was introduced by the firm's Human Resources head. He describes her as arriving to be introduced with an ear-to-ear grin, a pin-striped suit, and an attorney appropriate "pea bun" hairdo. He could not figure out what she was so happy about. He thought that she was knee-knockingly attractive.
One of Tiffany's favorite moments of the day was the first look, where Jay presented her with a diamond necklace to commemorate the day and, according to her, "fell to pieces" after seeing his gorgeous bride. (Who could blame him?)
The two tied the knot on the sandy beach at Pierre's; a favored memory of their ceremony was a reading from the Massachusetts Supreme Court case legalizing gay marriage. One challenge of a beach wedding in October: the weather. Says Tiffany, "It was hot. It was really hot. Despite the temperature, our photographers (Ben and Rebekah Hood from Kallima Photography) did an excellent job making us feel comfortable and looking good, and the photographs make clear how beautifully our day passed. Ben and Rebekah were tremendous and we cannot recommend them highly enough."
I asked the couple to share the reason they chose Islamorada and Pierre's: We were lucky enough to have a close friend, Alan Newman, who was formerly an event planner at Cheeca Lodge and is now the event planner at Hampton Inn-Islamorada. Alan assisted with many of the details (such as matching the hibiscus flowers in the champagne to the colors of the sunset - talk about attention to detail!). We first heard about Pierre's and its kitchen; it was recommended to us for the food alone. We went for dinner and fell in love with the sunset, the monkfish, and the sprawling veranda. We knew then that Pierre's was the perfect location for a wedding: a beautiful sunset, plentiful cocktails, and a delicious meal.
Among other interests (that I'm told include live music, Phish, cooking, Converse Chuck Taylor shoes and zombies) Jay is passionate about home brewing. For the reception, the two served beer that Jay brewed: an India Pale Ale named "Ale You Need Is Love" and a coffee oatmeal stout fermented with cocoa nibs named "Tiffany's Breakfast Stout." Awesomesauce!
The couple shared a few more of their favorite moments: The best man quoting Dr. Dre and Jennifer Lopez during his toast, super food, the flawless beauty of the location surpassed only by the beauty of the bride (I'm assuming this came from Jay!), Sekond Nature melting faces from the bandstand, and everyone dancing like nobody was watching. But most of all, we will remember the love we felt from our guests, and the happiness we felt for each other, and our excitement for our future. (And then we went to Croatia for our honeymoon, which was not too bad either.)
Absolute perfection... that's all I can say! Huge thanks to the talented duo at Kallima Photograpy, and special thanks to Alan Newman for helping to send this beauty our way (and pitching in to make their day completely amazing). Congratulations, Tiffany and Jay! We're so honored you shared your story with us.
Ceremony & Reception Venue: Pierre's Restaurant, Islamorada | Photography: Kallima Photography | Getting Ready: Cheeca Lodge & Spa | Floral Design: Floral Fantasy | Makeup: South Beach Makeup Studio | Dress: Nicole Miller | Groom's Attire: Jos. A Bank | Band: Sekond Nature | Cupcakes: Misha's Cupcakes