Editor’s Note: I’m digging into the archives today to re-share this incredible summer wedding in New England!
Today I’m thrilled to share another off-the-charts-gorgeous wedding captured by Heidi, of White Loft Studio. Andrea and Peter basically planned the most perfect New England wedding ever … and I love that the fabulous floral arrangements were made by the bride’s Mom & her Garden Club!
Says the bride, Andrea, “For our wedding, from day one, I had the vision of a romantic English Garden wedding with Armenian touches. This goal was realized as Peter and I had a traditional Armenian wedding ceremony outdoors in the beautiful garden. The added bonus was that everything overlooked the ocean on a 40-acre peninsula in Newport, Rhode Island. We rented a roomy Victorian house in downtown Newport that was great fun for the whole weekend and big enough to host Peter’s and my family. Guests came to spend time with us here in between their Newport shopping and sightseeing excursions. Also, the morning of the wedding all the bridesmaids got ready with the hair and makeup stylists spread out in different parts of the house. Staying all together in the house was a calming and stress-free addition to the days leading up to the big day.
Peter took me to Castle Hill for my birthday the first year we met. I immediately fell in love with the Relais and Chateaux property in Newport overlooking the Narragansett Bay; both the warm and intimate ambiance of the resort and the location are just splendid and definitely our favorite spot in New England. The location also reminded us of our favorite ocean overlooks in Half Moon Bay, California and Waterford, Ireland. For Peter and I, Castle Hill captured the beauty and romance of what we wanted our wedding to feel like to our guests. When Peter proposed, within a few days I already had Castle Hill booked!
My mom’s best friend had the wonderful idea of making wands with pink ribbons attached to wooden sticks for the guests to wave post-ceremony instead of the usual throwing of the rose petals. It was a fun and festive addition!
The ceremony was both Peter and I’s favorite part of the day as it reflected our life-long commitment to each other. It was a beautiful, Armenian ceremony officiated by my family’s priest from Boston. My cousin Richard flew in from London to be the Deacon for the ceremony. Also meaningful to us was the bridal party that consisted of my two sisters and cousin, Peter’s children and brother. With the perfectly blue sky and ocean and the sailboats drifting past, it was a gorgeous backdrop to our saying “I do!” Having our family and closest friends from all over the States and Europe there to celebrate was also truly special.
My mom designed and created all the flower arrangements, bouquets, boutonnieres and ceremony pieces with her very talented Garden Club friends. This was a huge job—all the Garden Club ladies came down to Newport for the weekend—and she worked until the very last minute putting up the finishing details. I didn’t have to give any direction to my mom—I knew we were in the best of hands! The flowers turned out perfectly: elegant and delicate tones captured the theme of our wedding and helped set the backdrop for both the ceremony and reception. In keeping with the English garden theme, my mom chose flowers such as: Sweet peas, Queen Anne’s Lace, white and pink Lisianthus, white and pink Oncidium orchids, English Ivy, Lamb’s Ears, pink David Austin roses, white Akito roses, Variegated Hosta, Pittosporum, and white Larkspur. Together with my dad, my mom also made all of the iridescent, blush-colored painted wooden pedestals for the guest table flowers. The pedestals reflected the nautical theme of the reception tent, which in turn, was built to pay homage to the sailboat tradition of Newport.
I wanted an elegant and classic bridal look that also had an Armenian reference to it. I went to one shop and, upon trying it on, knew it was the one! I chose a Lazaro ivory beaded and embroidered gown with cap sleeves and a keyhole back. My seamstress Anahit suggested to cut off the modified chapel train—which she thought would be unnecessary for the garden ceremony—and although I was at first apprehensive, she then cut away! I wanted to feel at ease and look natural during my wedding. I opted to go without a veil and instead wore a white Phalaenopsis orchid in my hair. For shoes, I chose a pair of shimmering glitter champagne-colored Jimmy Choo peep-toe heels.
Having studied at pastry school and worked in the Jean Georges pastry kitchen, I knew I wanted a delicious cake for the guests to enjoy. Peter and I chose a subtle almond cake flavor with vanilla buttercream frosting. We chose a simple three-tiered design with piped pearls. The petits fours favors were the same almond flavor as our wedding cake, both made by the same bakery, so we thought that it would be a nice take away piece from the wedding although Scrumptions Bakery did such a great job, most didn’t make it home as they were already eaten at the table!”
Andrea leaves us with some wedding advice, “I would advise to start planning early and don’t be afraid to ask for help from family and friends. I asked a lot of questions and got priceless answers! Depending on how detail-oriented you are, there can be a lot to do including all the follow up. Book early to get the vendors you want. Get recommendations and advice on the best-suited vendors from friends!
No matter how much you plan, there is a strong likelihood that there will be something that does not go your way. Try to forget about it and enjoy the fleeting moments of the day! Everyone told me how quickly the day went by, but I never imagined that it would be over with a snap of a finger!”
Credits: Venue: Castle Hill Inn / Photographer: Heidi Murphy / Dress: Lazaro / Bridesmaids dresses: Amsale / Groom and groomsmen suits: Tommy Hilfiger / Wedding cake and petits fours favors: Scrumptions / Save the dates, invitations and programs: An Elegant Affair / Seamstress: Anahit Mesrobian, Newton, Massachusetts