Photographer’s Remarks: “Jo and & Gregg met what they love doing most: Crossfit. They celebrated a beautiful outdoor garden Wedding at Marie Gabrielle.
“Gregg was shocked at Jo’s beauty during their first look and they both radiated joy throughout the entire day.”
Bridal Q & A
Q1: Tell us about your wedding!
“The inspirations behind our wedding were love, family, and friends. We wanted our wedding to be shared by all of our close family and friends in a natural garden setting.
“We utilized a neutral palate with soft pastel colors to blend in with the incredible greenery of Marie Gabrielle’s garden. We used gray, white/ivory, blush pink and lots of greenery to produce a soft, elegant garden style floral setting with lots of candle light.
“Jo comes from a strong Lebanese background and Gregg is Jewish. Finding a way to honor both cultures was important and a challenging task. Our chupah was set as the backdrop for our ceremony and the mix of music, dancing and Lebanese desserts tied in Jo’s culture. We were able to mix in Jewish and Lebanese dancing to ensure everyone experienced both of our cultures.”
Q2: Let’s talk wedding decor
“Our ceremony, cocktail hour and dinner were all hosted in the garden. Our decor was built around the garden theme, using flowers and wood pieces to enhance the already gorgeous event space.
“Our guests found their escort cards hanging from a custom made dark wood display during their cocktail hour. This led guests to their tables in the Grove filled with more stunning floral additions and string lights overhead. The head table had a chandelier overhead shining down on our table, surrounded by all of our family and friends.
“Once dinner concluded, everyone made their way inside to a vast dance floor capable of holding all 200 guests. Proudly displayed right next to the dance floor was our custom tiered cake stand and on the opposite side, we had a fun photo booth for everyone to enjoy.
“There was lounge furniture on one side of the room and cocktail tables and additional seating on the opposite side of the room.”
Q3: What were the florals like in your wedding?
“The bride carried a hand tied bouquet with soft draping greenery including ruscus, silver dollar eucalyptus, dusty miller, white o’hara garden roses, white majolika spray roses, white astrantia, white ranunculus, white lisianthus banded in ivory satin ribbon to match.Bridesmaids carried loose, organic, hand tied bouquets with sweet escimo roses, white ranunculus, white astrantia, white majolika spray roses, accents of dusty miller, ruscus, and silver dollar eucalyptus banded in ivory ribbon.
“The groom wore a single white ranunculus accented with white astrantia, dusty miller, and eucalyptus banded in ivory satin ribbon.
“Groomsmen wore all greenery boutonniere with silver dollar eucalyptus, ruscus, and dusty miller banded in ivory satin ribbon.
“Centerpieces were composed of thin laid ruscus with staggered height stemmed votive holders and silver mercury glass votives.
“Our chupah was made of white birch, with a soft white flowing fabric and an asymmetrical greenery cage draped over one corner.
“Our cake stand was a custom made wooden octagon with two independent floral designs on opposing corners surrounding three separate two tier custom cakes made by XO Cakery.”
Q4: Did you personalize the day in any way?
“To honor Gregg’s Jewish heritage, we had a stunning chupah as the backdrop for our ceremony. Much of the music throughout the event was Lebanese, spawning epic dabke dancing and an ambience no one will ever forget. Marie Gabrielle took down the many country flags flying over the garden and allowed us to replace them with four of our own: the flag of Lebanon, the flag of the United States, the flag of Texas A&M, and the flag of the Florida Gators. All were proudly displayed flying high above our wedding.
“The Aggie War Hymn and Gator Fight song were each sung by the many alumni of both schools in attendance. For dessert, we added Lebanese sweets to compliment our wedding cakes.”
Q5: Let’s talk fashion
“Jo wore a glamorous Mori Lee dress full of romantic elegance. It mixed embroidered lace and soft net in a mermaid gown featuring a uniquely beaded illusion back and full skirt.
“Jo’s something borrowed was her vail, worn by one of her bridesmaid a year prior.
“Her something blue was found on the soles of her Betsy Johnson heels with jewel, pearl and beaded embellishments.
“Gregg went the traditional route and wore a stylish all black tuxedo. His watch was given to him by his late grandfather and was worn as a way to honor him. One of Gregg’s groomsmen gifts were unique socks, which all of the gentlemen wore for the wedding, including Gregg.”
Q6: How did you meet?
“Jo and Gregg met at their CrossFit gym. After a workout together, Gregg approached Jo and asked for her number. He wasted no time and asked her out on a date after talking on the phone that evening for a few hours.
“Gregg setup the proposal in the same restaurant they shared their first date, Seasons 52. Many of Jo’s close friends and family, along with Gregg’s family and best man were in the room when Jo walked in, completely surprised by the entire event. We used the same space for our rehearsal dinner many months later.”
Q7: What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?
“Our first look was something we will both forever cherish. Gregg had absolutely no idea what Jo’s dress looked like before seeing her and getting to connect with each other in the garden alone before gathering with our bridesmaids and groomsmen together was incredibly special.
“In addition, Jo’s niece was born two weeks prior to our wedding and we had the opportunity to take pictures with her in the garden just after our first look. She was only other person at our wedding wearing white.”
Q8: Do you have any advice to share with other couples planning their day?
“The happy wife, happy life mantra is true and starts long before you say I do and the sooner you embrace that, the better.
“Our wedding planner was instrumental in ensuring we had everything organized and helped us select reliable, trustworthy vendors.
“We were most selective of our photographer, knowing our photos would last a lifetime.
“In the end, the wedding is about the couple, not the many family members and friends that may want to add their thoughts on how things should be. Embrace each other and make the day everything you want it to be. Don’t sweat the small things.
“Not everything is going to be perfect and in actuality, that makes it even better looking back on it.”
Vendors in this Wedding
Event Venue: Marie Gabrielle Restaurant and Gardens
Cake Designer: XO cakery
Hair Stylist: Stephanie Nelson Makeup
Floral Designer: Haute Floral
Event Planner: Refined Romance Events
Photographer: Kate Pease Photography
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