This French Chic themed wedding  is brimming with arts, culture and lots of personal and meaningful touches! Chorus performance of ‘Eva Maria’ during Joanna + Charles’ ceremony…reception entertainment from a 14-piece big band…a ballet performance during dinner…and my favorite, ending the night with a Greek band and cigar and candy bar. Don’t miss Joanna’s wardrobe change from her classic and elegant Pronovias wedding gown into a super sleek and sexy brocade party dress.  Or the really thoughtfully themed table scapes:  framed pictures of the couple’s most favorite pieces of art that speak of love…Enjoy!

Joanna + Charles | August 27, 2011 | Lenox, MA

The Ceremony
We wanted the ceremony to be symbolic of what matters most to us, and have our own personal touches. So rather than have a religious ceremony, we had one of our best friends who has been married for nearly 25 years be the officiator. He spoke so beautifully, and then we also had one of my best friends read a poem in our honor by E.E. Cummings, ‘I Hold Your Heart’. In honor of my late grandmother, we also had a chorus perform ‘Eva Maria’. We exchanged our own vows. We even had our puppy walk down the aisle with the flower girl. It was beautiful and meaningful to us.

The Reception
The reception was elegant, French Chic. We wanted our celebration to be a throwback to an opulent era in a mansion. We had the ballroom for dancing with a 14-piece big band dressed in tuxedos. During dinner we had a ballet performance from a local non-profit dance company that performed ‘Somewhere Over the Rainbow’. Each table had a framed picture rather than number, of our most favorite pieces of art that speak of love, for instance, Romeo and Juliet (theater), La Boheme (Opera), Moonlight Sonata (classical music), etc. Flowers and candlelight were everywhere. We also ended up having a Greek band and a cigar and candy bar.

Joanna’s Dress Search
In the beginning I did start my dress search with a specific style in mind. I had seen a picture in a magazine, and although I wasn’t sure I wanted that exact dress, I really liked the fit on the model. I had gone all over Manhattan, including Kleinfields, Bergdorfs and other wedding ateliers. But finally I said I might as well go to Pronovias where the magazine picture was taken from. I tried on the dress I saw from the magazine and I loved it. It fit perfectly and although the top was not at all what I envisioned or planned, I loved the fit so much and the overall dress was unique that I knew it was the one.

How Joanna Felt in Her Wedding Dress
Elegant, Classic, Stunning

Why Joanna Decided to Sell Her Wedding Dress
I want someone else to enjoy it. It was so beautiful and I loved wearing it but really I only wore it for a few hours. After the ceremony and pictures I changed into a party dress so I could dance. So rather than keep it in a box, I want to know someone else has also been able to enjoy it on their special day.


Wedding Dress: Pronovias | Photography: Rich Frederick Photography | Ceremony and Reception Venue: The Elm Court Estate | Event Planning: Today’s featured bride and her mother, Valerie James of Val’s Restaurant & Catering | Floral Design: The Flower StopCake: Crown Bakery

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