When the bride is a florist, you know you've got an epic wedding on your hands, but nothing could have prepared us for this over-the-top destination wedding. While the wedding design focuses on timeless beauty, the couple decided to go non-traditional with the wedding attire and requested that all the guests dress in white while they wore something a little less conventional. There are so many swoon-worthy details from this rose gold-themed wedding in Thailand, but let's get right down to it...there's an elephant, you guys! A freaking elephant!
Being in the industry herself, bride, Chiara had already worked with many of the vendors before, including the photographer, Tessa Kit Photography, and videographer, JBJ Pictures, so she decided to bring them with her for this destination wedding. Planner, Ilaire, worked closely with the bride to design this wedding at Renaissance Phuket Resort and Spa and make sure that the florals were extra EXTRA. Chiara's company, Floral Couture Atelier, designed all of the florals for the wedding! You can see all of the images from this wedding in the full gallery. Read on to hear more from Planner, Ilaire, and the bride, Chiara, about how this stunning wedding came together.
Chiara and Stephen's Wedding day was held at Renaissance Phuket Resort and Spa, designed and planned by Wedding Boutique Phuket together with the Bride, Chiara, from Perth, Australia, who happens to be a florist herself. The wedding was captured by the talented destination photographer Tessa Kit Photography, from Australia, and the JBJ Pictures team from California–such a combination of talented artists for that wedding day! The design focused on neutral tones, luxe details, fine art florals, dried bleached leaves, together with natural and antique decor...and of course pampas grass, for this very whimsical garden wedding under the trees overlooking the Andaman Sea.
AN UNFORGETTABLE PROPOSAL
Stephen proposed in the most perfect way! I have had a love for elephants all my life, so during an elephant painting show at Perth Zoo, Stephen got down on one knee and asked me to marry him with the help of a painting that was made during the show by one of the elephants named Permai. Permai was painting by spraying paint through her trunk onto a canvas that had an elephant stencil stuck on top which was then removed at the end to reveal the words, “Chiara will you marry me?”. This painting was shown to an audience of between 150-200 people, so Stephen was so nervous, and so was I once I read my name and saw Stephen at my feet. Both Stephen and I were speechless, so if you wanted to get technical, he never asked and I never answered but the moment was beautiful.
WHY WE CHOSE A DESTINATION WEDDING
We chose to have a destination wedding for a couple of reasons, one being that I, being a wedding florist myself, wanted to go away where I wouldn’t have the feeling of working and I would be able to relax and enjoy my own wedding. The second reason is we love to travel and love the feeling you get when you mix a holiday in with a wedding too. Everyone enjoys a holiday and can enjoy a relaxing time away and let the celebrations go on for more than one day. Stephen and I have always loved Thailand for the scenery, food, and culture, so Thailand was an easy pick for us. We have traveled to Phuket on multiple occasions, and being foodies, we wanted delicious cuisine, gorgeous scenery, and a laid-back vibe, so it was the perfect fit!
CREATING THE DREAM TEAM
Ilaire and I took few months to create our unique, whimsical, and romantic garden wedding. For her, the biggest challenge was been finding the right area to create the altar I had in my mind–a natural ground-growing floral installation completed by hanging floral cascade from the top. The beachfront garden trees looked just perfect for this purpose! Our wedding invitations and vow books were created by a dear friend of mine, Hayley from SOS Designs. Being a friend, she knew exactly what I liked, so, with a brief description, she designed the most beautiful fine art wedding invitations with rose gold details, including the elegant monogram with our initials.
AN UNCONVENTIONAL ENSEMBLE
I always wanted to have a unique unconventional bridal look, and definitely not a white dress, as I wanted our guests to wear white to the wedding. So, a two-piece gown seemed like the best option for our beachfront wedding in Thailand. I had my gown custom-made by Meeting Grace in Australia. The designers, Chloe and Elsa, were so lovely and patient with me as I kept changing my mind. Finally, all the little pieces in my head that didn't make sense came together in harmony thanks to the creativity of these ladies.
WEDDING DAY JITTERS
On the wedding day, I was quite nervous, to begin with–right up until I reached Stephen at the end of the aisle. I quickly became excited and filled with joy. Stephen was extremely nervous too until the ceremony was over. Finally, after the ceremony, we both felt like we were on cloud nine! It was such a magical day and we wish we could relive it over again.
SOME MEMORABLE MOMENTS
There are a couple of moments that stand out to me from our day. My nephew, who I wasn’t sure if he would walk down the aisle that day or not, surprised us by being happy to do so with one of my bridesmaids (his mother). However, once he reached the first aisle of chairs, he decided he didn’t want to walk anymore and just stood there blocking the aisle. He stood there, arms folded, with a scowl that could kill. When it came time for me to walk down the aisle he was still standing there. So, linking arms with my father, we stepped right over him, which also helped calm my nerves...LOL! Another topic of our wedding day was a very simple intimate moment where Stephen and I took a walk together after our couple's portrait session. That time was quite special to me as it gave us a moment to talk in private about how we were both feeling and what we had been doing. Lastly, our first dance, surrounded by our friends and family holding sparklers, was pretty magical, even when we are both quite awkward people with our simple swaying dance moves.
I have always dreamed of having an elephant attend my wedding. My amazing photographer organized a post-wedding photo shoot with an elephant on the beach! This was an excuse to put on my dress a couple of days after the wedding, get glammed up again, and go on a little adventure! I will never be able to thank Tessa Kit enough for making this dream a reality! I also put together a bouquet of preserved bleached foliage and amaranthus because, well, I’m a florist!
ADVICE FROM BRIDE IN THE WEDDING INDUSTRY
The best advice I can give to any couples planning their wedding would be to hire a good wedding planner! That way you can enjoy the party and just show up on the day stress-free. Being in the industry myself, I know how much goes on behind the scenes and having someone to look after everything for you will allow you peace of mind so you can be present in the moment. Also, invest in a good photographer and videographer, as your photos and video will be your most treasured items well after your wedding has passed! Plus, from a wedding florist (like me), make sure you have an incredible bridal bouquet as this masterpiece will be in a lot of your photos and more than likely will end up in a photo that you will have hung on your wall for many years to come!