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Weddings

A Southern Wedding in Savannah

A Southern Wedding in Savannah

An Elegant Southern Wedding

Hillary Field and Andrew Macdonald’s marriage was arranged. Not by their parents, but thanks to close mutual friends who knew they'd be perfect for each other. The two were casually introduced over a series of cottage weekends and parties, and Mac (as he's known) eventually invited Hilary on a first date. Hillary, not realizing this momentous occasion was a 'date' date, brought along her friend Sarah. But the couple, who love to laugh, quickly recovered and their modern-day matchmakers watched gleefully as they got to know each other and fell in love.


Colour coordinated even in prep, Hillary's bridesmaids strike a pose with the bride-to-be.

Hillary, who works in Marketing at General Mills Canada, and Mac, who spends his days managing a division of Uber's business, bonded over a shared outlook and approach to life, including a love of getting outside of the city on weekends, eating delicious food, spending time with friends, and joking around, a hobby they take very seriously.

Below: Mac wore a navy blue tuxedo made by Garrison Bespoke.


Hillary overlooks the grounds of Savannah's Ford Plantation in her Mira Zwillinger dress from Toronto's Dina Alonzi Bridal

Mac proposed to Hillary on their 4th anniversary during a staycation at a local hotel. After a morning of massages, he got down on one knee and Hillary, who went into shock for a good 30 minutes, eventually recovered enough to spend the rest of the day drinking champagne and celebrating with family and friends until the wee hours of the morning.


Right: The couple chose Wide Eyes Paper Co. to design their wedding invitations; Left: Hillary's grandfather, who officiated the ceremony, leads the men as they prepare to take their places.

Above: the couple tie the knot; Below: Hillary & Mac with Hillary's parents and surrounded by their guests.


Given that theirs was a destination wedding, the couple chose Andrea Gray Harper, a Savannah-based event planner, to handle the details. With the challenges of planning long-distance facing them, Pinterest played a big part in helping define and identify how the couple wanted their day to look and feel.


The Southern theme Hillary and Mac wanted came to life with details such as a Bubbles & Bourbon Bar, sparklers at the end of the evening, and plenty of Southern hospitality. The pair wanted their mostly Canadian guests to enjoy a true Southern meal, and chose a menu filled with fresh, local fare: fried green tomatoes, cucumber salad, fried chicken, fish succotash, pulled pork and fresh peach cobbler. As a nod to Mac, they served a late night snack of mini Big Mac sliders and McDonald’s-style skinny fries, served in  - of course - Big Mac containers.


 The wedding weekend ended with an epic Sunday brunch, where the newlyweds reminisced over their day with family and friends, after which they headed off on a 'mini moon' to the Montage Palmetto Bluffs, a stunning resort in South Carolina. They recently returned from their official honeymoon, where they spent two weeks in Vietnam. 

Favourite gifts? The couple says there are too many to count, but are currently obsessed with their placemats and Tom Dixon decorative pieces as well as some special champagne flutes. Because they love spending time with family and friends, Hillary and Mac are often found entertaining. Their style is casual and they often throw backyard barbecues and themed parties. Though they admit they haven’t yet mastered the art of the dinner party, it doesn’t deter them from filling their new house with people as often as they can, as they being to create memories of their new life together.

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      A Waterfront Wedding in Muskoka

      A Waterfront Wedding in Muskoka

      Little did Cynthia Spence realize that when her 12-year old self first met Corey Hawtin, she would one day marry him.  The couple, who have deep roots in Muskoka, met as children during summer camp at the Muskoka Lakes Golf & Country Club, learning how to sail and play tennis. Cynthia, who is good friends with Corey's cousin, would later run into her future husband as a teenager when he would take them in his boat to or from family gatherings and parties on the lake.


      Above: The bridesmaids each wore a uniquely designed white dress.
      Below: Cynthia wore Valentino's Tango pumps in white patent.


      Fast forward to 2007, when Corey and Cynthia ran into each other at a New Year's Eve party in Toronto. Cynthia was on her way to Europe on an exchange, but upon her return six months later, the two began dating, spending every weekend together in Muskoka, where Cynthia was based at the time.  Corey, who works in construction and development as founder of the Mazenga Building Group, and Cynthia, who until recently worked in the fashion industry, dated for nine years, and along the way acquired two babies: Havoc, a German Shepherd, and Oscar, a Chihuahua.

      Above: Cynthia is all smiles as she steps into her Vera Wang dress. Below: Corey and his groomsmen  take a pre-wedding plunge  in the lake as the couple's German Shepherd Havoc looks on.

      In March 2015 the couple stopped in London en route to a ski trip in Switzerland. Corey, who was planning to propose on the trip, was so nervous holding onto the ring that he decided to propose on their very first day abroad. He popped the question at the top of the London Eye, where Cynthia, surrounded by Big Ben, the Thames and the City of London, agreed to marry her longtime beau.



      Above: Corey wore a Gucci tuxedo from Holt Renfrew, paired with Lanvin sneakers for an informal touch; the groomsmen share a pre-ceremony laugh. Below: Go-time - Corey and team  make their way to the wedding in a Ditchburn that has been in Corey's family for years.

      Cynthia and Corey chose late June 2016 and the very place they first met - The Muskoka Lakes Golf & Country Club - to marry. Beyond the sentimental reasons for choosing the location, the couple loved the Club's understated elegance. Of course the setting - right on the shore of Lake Rosseau - was unbeatable.


      Below: Pulling up to the MLGCC, Cynthia and Corey during and after the ceremony.







      Above: Cynthia's all-white bridal party. Below, left: the wedding party. Below, right: The couple and their families.

      The couple enlisted the help of the Nous Design Group for all aspects of the reception's decor (below). Wood harvest tables were covered in ferns, moss and candlelight, complementing the rustic surroundings.  They added a few modern touches by using rectangular lucite candle holders and white ghost chairs.


      As guests left the reception, floating chinese lanterns dotted the lake, casting a warm and romantic glow.

      The newlyweds waited until September to embark on their African honeymoon.  They began in the city with a visit to Cape Town, then moved to the country, where they embarked on a Safari in Sabi Sands. Lastly, they ended their vacation on the beach, relaxing on Mozambique's Benguerra Island.

      Cynthia and Corey don't entertain often, but when they do, they go all out. True to their understated style, they love beautiful things that remain casual, such as one of their favourite wedding gifts, a Match 1995 pewter-rimmed serving platter. As Cynthia explains, "we love it because it reflects our own design aesthetic, which is modern yet warm."

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      A Casual Late Summer Wedding in Toronto

      A Casual Late Summer Wedding in Toronto

      The last thing Tom Stephenson expected from getting a Masters in Marketing at the University of Surrey was a life on the other side of the pond.  But when a Canadian student called Lindsay Young told an inappropriate joke, everything changed.  Tom, whose personality is more on the quiet and reserved side of the spectrum, was instantly attracted to Lindsay. "She was super loud!," he says, adding that Lindsay is "the complete opposite of me."  Since that first joke, these two haven't looked back, and Tom followed his heart - and his Canadian love - to Toronto.

      Left: A vintage Rolls Royce waits for the couple at The Ivy. Right: Lindsay and Tom en route to their wedding.

      The Laws of Attraction. In all other aspects of their lives, the laws of attraction are well in place for Lindsay and Tom. From their first date, a trip into London where they spent the afternoon exploring Camden, the two realized they shared a huge love of travel, food and drink. While Lindsay doesn't recall a "moment" when she knew Tom was the one, Tom still remembers that inappropriate joke. Recognizing that Lindsay shared his quintessential British sense of humour, Tom was smitten from the get-go.

      The Proposal. When a planned trip to Bermuda (where Lindsay suspected Tom would propose) was cancelled, Lindsay decided to do a little digging one night to see if she could find the ring and secretly try it on. She easily found a box in Tom's bedside table, only to find a note inside that said: "try harder."  A week later, Tom recreated the couple's first Toronto date at the Toronto Temperance Society, where he proposed marriage, ring firmly in box.


      Above: Lindsay recites the script she wrote for their ceremony. Lindsay's dress is from Sarah Seven's Ready-to-Wear collection in Chicago, and Tom wore Ted Baker. Nellie Hunt at Coriander Girl provided the florals.

      The Wedding. Lindsay and Tom opted for a casual wedding that reflected their style and personality. No bridal party. No speeches. No sit-down ceremony. Instead, the couple organized a late summer evening celebration at Toronto's Steam Whistle Brewery. After staying at The Ivy at the Verity Club for a few days, they got ready together, and after a few photos, made their way to Steam Whistle in a white vintage Rolls Royce. After an outdoor cocktail reception of champagne and oysters from Rodney's Oyster House, a 10-minute ceremony took place with friends and family standing around them.  Lindsay and Tom toasted each other and the group then celebrated with dinner, games, and dancing under the stars until the early hours of the morning.


      Above: Linday and Tom were thrilled with Food Dudes, who catered the event.
      Below: Rodney's famous oysters.

      The evening's fare included passed mini grilled cheese sandwiches, French onion soup dumplings, and dinner stations with tacos, mac and cheese, mushroom risotto, beet-crusted salmon, and salads. For dessert the group enjoyed liquid nitro ice cream sandwiches and mini lemon meringue and key lime pies. A late night snack included fish and chips and mini pizzas, and a Jacked Up espresso truck pulled up at 10:00 p.m. to serve espressos. The beer was naturally Steam Whistle, and the wine was all from Ontario. 


      Above: Picnic tables, a coffee truck and the CN Tower set the tone for the evening.  
      Below: Lindsay and Tom's guests loved the informality of the wedding.

      Lindsay, who works in tourism, and Tom, who is in the software industry, both love to travel (above, they had their family and friends sign their map in lieu of a guest book). They maximize their vacation days and go on as many adventures as they can. In their seven years together the couple have been to over a dozen countries, from their first getaway in Reykjavik to most recently, their honeymoon in New Zealand. The couple - who love good food and wine - are natural entertainers, and for them it's always a casual affair. Lindsay, a master at cheese and charcuterie boards, loves their Richard Brendon charger from HG, which she uses for serving, along with their Georg Jensen Bloom servers. Their evenings usually involve silly games and themed food, including a recent evening in celebration of the 2016 MLB All-Star Game where the couple served six separate flatbread pizzas, one for each Blue Jay. Supporting local food and beverage producers is important for them, and they love shopping at their local Kensington Market stores, including Blackbird Bakery, Hooked, Sanagan's, Cheese Magic and the Kensington Fruit Market.

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      An Intimate Wedding on Fogo Island

      An Intimate Wedding on Fogo Island

      When Noah Vardon met Michael Pelz at a holiday party in 2011, a wave of nostalgia set in. The two, who both hail from the same part of Ontario, quickly realized that geography wasn't the only thing that they had in common. 

      Left: Noah, pre-ceremony; Right: anticipation. Bottom: Inside the Fogo Island Inn; 

      Michael, who was finishing up his PhD in Political Science at the University of Toronto, discovered that Noah shared his love of politics, travel, art, design, family and work ethic. The two quickly became inseparable. 

      The couple's first date was at an intimate French bistro in the West end of the city. The evening was so successful that they decided their first big trip together would be to Paris. Noah and Michael, who both work long hours (Noah as a Media VP and Michael as a Senior Policy Advisor for the Ontario Government), take full advantage of their time off. Whether a weekend escape or larger voyage, they love discovering unique places to visit and take in local culture.

      A little over three years later, Noah proposed to Michael with a beautiful watch at the Drake Devonshire Inn in Prince Edward County. The couple, who were in the Owner's Suite, remember the beauty of the moment, with Lake Ontario and a rising sun as their stunning backdrop.

      Above: Noah's suit and shoes are Hugo Boss, Michael's suit and shirt are from the Suit Supply, shoes are Paul Smith. Both wore Hermes ties. Below: Mothers of the grooms.

      In addition to the striking natural beauty of Fogo Island, Noah and Michael were excited to create a custom menu that explored the Newfoundland food scene, which is not only unique but bursting with local flavour. The wedding party dined on Barr'd Island Salad and fresh scallops, crab, cold water shrimp and oysters.

      Culture and nature will collide on the couple's honeymoon, which takes place this month in Japan. They look forward to exploring Tokyo, and will then hit the mountains to ski. Noah and Michael will be joined with close friends on the honeymoon, a modern take on the traditional honeymoon, and a trend we're beginning to see emerge.



      Above: Noah and Michael share a quiet moment after the ceremony. Below: a perfect end to the evening. 

      The newlyweds, who are in the building stage of setting up their home together, love to host dinner parties, preferring intimate gatherings of four or six. Noah loves to cook, and Michael, who does the plating, are both passionate about local Ontario food and wine, as well as their new dinnerware and cake plate from HG.

      Photos by Alex Stead Photography

       

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      A Magical Wedding in Muskoka

      A Magical Wedding in Muskoka

      Mia Shulman & Benjamin Guth's Muskoka Wedding


      Mia is captured just prior to the ceremony. 

      When Benjamin Guth cancelled their second date for a month-long business trip to Ireland, Mia Shulman wasn't sure what to think.  The Managing Editor of HGTV.ca was charmed by her suitor after their first date, but a month was a long time.



      Ben and Mia were photographed by Dave and Jenn Stark 


      Ben, who was sent to Ireland in his role as Program Manager for Mobilize Jobs, had no intention of letting the separation get in the way. After repeated invitations, he finally convinced Mia to meet him for date #2 in Madrid. After an epic weekend, their romance was set in stone. Mia and Ben were married this summer on Lake Rosseau, a place close to their hearts. "Muskoka felt so right for us," explained Mia, "because Ben's family has a cottage there and we rarely miss a summer weekend up north." Choosing to marry in the area gave the couple a chance to share a place they love deeply.

      When it came to wedding planning, Mia and Ben focused less on formality and more on fun.  They swapped traditional wedding music for Jackie Wilson's Higher and Higher, instantly setting the mood.  Working with wedding planner Lynzie Kent of Love by Lynzie helped alleviate the stress of planning an out-of-town wedding.  "We kept everything really natural, opting for a palette of white and green, a few gold accents and lots of candles," explains Mia. The bride sourced vintage postcards of Muskoka that were attached to welcome bags, and foraged the forest of green sprigs to place on each menu.

      The menu included classic summer fare: salads with berries, salmon and classic Canadian butter tarts.  The groom's father created a cheese wheel in lieu of a wedding cake, and fresh cherries packed in brown paper bags acted as wedding favours.


      Mia's dress is from Lowon Pope and Ben wore a navy blue Armani suit from
      Harry Rosen paired with a Liberty print bow tie from Pomp and Ceremony. 

      Mia and Ben took a "mini moon" to the East Coast right after the wedding, and are planning their honeymoon in Japan next month. In the meantime, they look forward to entertaining family and friends at home. Shulman, who loves setting a beautiful table, believes that any great party starts with a charcuterie board and delicious wine. Favourite wedding gifts? "Ben is over the moon with his Berard Olivewood Bowl. For me, I love our new Sabre horn flatware; I know it's more common to register for big-ticket items but I like the ones I'll use everyday that remind me of our wonderful family and friends."

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      A Surprise Wedding in Toronto

      A Surprise Wedding in Toronto

      A Surprise Wedding in Toronto

      The couple, who began their romance over Dim Sum in Chinatown, opted for a non-traditional wedding for 100.


      Heather and Michael chose Danielle Hitchcock to design their invitations and Laura Clarke
      to photograph their day.

       

      From the vintage engagement ring to their casually elegant reception, Heather Lewis and Michael Kan ensured their special day was very much “them”. Lewis, an Interior Designer, and Kan, a Civil Engineer, weren’t at all fond of the idea of a big traditional wedding


      The couple, whose aesthetic is clean, and contemporary, wanted to celebrate with friends and family, but in their own unconventional way.  So they decided to host an engagement party at Bricco Kitchen and Wine Bar in The Junction, and surprised everyone with a wedding ceremony and reception that they pulled off with the help of a few close confidantes.

      A stunning floral feature wall was created by Toronto florist Blush and Bloom. "When you work with such a beautiful space, décor can be kept to a minimum," said Lewis.

      The couple's cake is from The Wedding Cake Shoppe, and the gold and white macarons are from Patisserie V. Marie. The bride's dress is from Lover's Land and the groom's suit is from Top Shop Man.

      Lewis and Kan said they had an amazing reaction from the element of surprise. "We’d do it all over again, 100%," said Lewis. The couple honeymooned in Palm Springs. Favourite Hopson Grace registry gift?
      "Everything from Tom Dixon!" 

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      An Elegant Summer Wedding in Toronto

      An Elegant Summer Wedding in Toronto

      Pamela Ruebusch & Henry Liska's Summer Wedding

      Nearly ten years to the day after they first met, Pamela Ruebusch and Henry Liska tied the knot. Introduced in 2006 by a mutual friend, they went to Toronto's Spoke Club for their first date and dined on Halibut and Chablis. Henry, an Interior Designer, who shortly thereafter was in the Grand Caymans on a work assignment, couldn't get Pamela off his mind. Pamela, however, wasn't immediately convinced.


      Left: At the alter of Our Lady of Sorrows, Toronto

       

      After all, Pamela, who runs her own executive search company, had the luxury of time on her hands; Henry didn't. Having just been asked to join Grand Cayman's largest architecture firm as Director of Interior Design, Henry had just a few short days to sign back the contract. A conversation with his good friend Jimmy Molloy helped him realize he'd likely never return to Toronto if he accepted the offer, and any possibilities with Pamela would be gone forever. Henry stayed, and nine years later, he proposed. At the end of a business trip to San Diego, on an outing with friends in La Jolla, they came across a jeweller who was closing. Under the glass of his counter was the perfect emerald cut diamond ring surrounded by two flanking diamonds of the same shape. The ring was exactly what Pamela had been imagining, and after some negotiation, the ring was on Pamela’s finger and Henry was on one knee.


      Pamela chose Ines di Santo to make her gown and Milliner David Dunkley for her hairpiece, a cascade of ivory peau de soie flowers. Henry's dinner suit was made by Toronto bespoke tailor Jean-Paul. The wedding, which took place at Toronto's Our Lady of Sorrows Roman Catholic Church, was followed by a reception at the Toronto Golf Club, where the couple were feted by 145 guests.

      The groom's dear friend John Pritchard, a chef based in Charlottetown, created the menu which was then executed by the Toronto Golf Club's Executive Chef. Guests dined on Gin and Cucumber Sorbet, Queen Charlotte Halibut, Beef Tenderloin, Watercress Puree, Manchego Potato Flan with Fried Shallots and Summer Peas, and an Ice Wine Sabayon and Pistachio Brittle with Honey Comb for dessert.

      The wedding cake was created by Nadia Collela. Each of the six tiers was a different flavour, including Salted Caramel with Butter Crème, Raspberry and Orange Pekoe, and Bergamot with Honecomb Butter Crème. 

      The couple's friend Michael Pellegrino of Teatro Verde decorated the venue and provided the florals.

      Two days later, Pamela and Henry were relaxing in Bermuda, where they honeymooned at The Tucker's Point Club.

      Favourite HG gift?  "We love both the look and elegant simplicity of our Laguiole en Aubrac bone handled carving set," said Henry, who describes the couple's style as casually elegant, and added that the gift "is very close to our favourite, the pewter-trimmed platter from Match 1995." 

       

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      A Spectacular Wedding in the Australian Outback

      A Spectacular Wedding in the Australian Outback

      Rebecca Sykes and Bryden Richardson's Wedding

      Inside the couple's special day

      When Rebecca Sykes came to Canada for a one-month work assignment in 2012, the last thing she expected was to meet the love of her life. But over post-work drinks with colleagues one evening, she met Bryden Richardson, and everything changed.


      Pretty in pink: Rebecca is surrounded by her bridesmaids.

      Meeting Rebecca was also a game changer for Bryden, who had met his match. Not only did Rebecca also work in the financial industry (she works for BlackRock and he runs his own Merchant Banking business), they both shared the same passion for the outdoors. Any spare time they have is spent outside, whether it's hiking, biking, running, swimming, camping, fishing, golfing, skiing or kite-boarding.

       
      The couple in Southern Australia. Rebecca wore Oscar de la Renta and Bryden's tuxedo is from Harrison Menswear in Toronto.

      The couple, who decided to marry in Rebecca's home town of Adelaide this past March, relied on Rebecca's mother to plan the entire event.  170 guests gathered at the Mandalay House & Garden in the Adelaide Hills for an optional black tie ceremony. "The weather was very hot," explained Rebecca, "so it was as formal as people were comfortable dressing, given the heat of the Australian summer."



       

      Bryden and Rebecca plan to take a honeymoon at the end of this year, and are spending the early months as newlyweds entertaining for friends and family.  "I love to entertain because I get to bring my friends together as well as cook, two things I adore," explains Rebecca. The glowing couple is looking forward to casual evenings with friends, family, and their beloved dog Mr. Roo. Adds Rebecca, "Our entertaining style is very relaxed." 



       

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      Un matrimonio chic della città

      Un matrimonio chic della città

      Julieta Grieco & Peter Bonetta's Modern Formal Matrimonio

      Italian is the language of love, so it's only befitting that Julieta Grieco and Peter Bonetta met while studying the language at the University of Toronto while both were in their third year. A friend in common decided to serve as  paraninfo (Italian for matchmaker), and arranged a pub night where Peter claims it was ​amore at first sight. Not only was she beautiful and smart, but Julieta, who grew up in Argentina, was a big soccer fan. As they say in both sport and life, it was win-win. The bride, who agrees there was instant chemistry between the two, loved Peter's soccer player looks and kind demeanour. She wanted to know more.


      Above: Momentos of the couple's day.
       

      Julieta is radiant as she prepares to walk down the aisle. Her dress is from Rosa Clara and the flowers are from Coriander Girl.

       
      The couple married at Trinity Chapel at the University of Toronto.



      Peter and Julieta take a moment amidst the celebrations.

      On their first date, which took place at the Boulevard Café near UofT, Peter and Julieta both realized much they shared in common, including the same values and a great sense of humour. It didn't hurt that they also had lots of friends in common.  In fact the couple was so simpatico that they both knew each other was "the one" by date No. 2.
      Five years in, after both completed their Masters degrees from the University of Toronto, Peter planned a picnic in High Park where he unveiled a charcuterie board, french macarons and a bottle of wine. With their English Bulldog Winston in attendance as witness, Peter proposed. Winston, seeing Julieta become teary with emotion, wanted to comfort his master not realizing these are the best kind of tears in the world.

       


      Above: The couple pose with their parents and wedding party.
      Outside Trinity Chapel. The couple chose Amrita Singh as their photographer.
      En route to their reception at the Berkeley Field House, the couple stopped off at the Toronto Brickworks for some photos. Peter's suit was tailor-made for the occasion.
      At the Berkeley Field House, the 125 guests dined on Heirloom Tomato Salad, Berretta Farm Dry-Aged Beef Tenderloin with Beetroot Puree and Leek & Sherry jus, Grilled Halibut with Sweet Potato Rösti and Fennel Purée, and for dessert, pint-sized Crème Brûlées, Cream Puffs with Dulce de Leche, and Salted Caramel Brownies. Julieta planned everything herself but gives lots of credit to her florist for bringing the room to life. Though it was mid-summer, the couple opted for a formal wedding that was modern at the same time.


      The cake was made by 'Midnight Snack', a catering company owned by the bride's friend Mary Wood.

      While Julieta shared a quiet moment waltzing with her father, Peter and his mother Jennifer chose to kick-up 
      their heels and get the party started.

      The couple, who went to Sardinia and Andalucía for their honeymoon, are enjoying their newlywed life. Julieta, who works in communications and adult education as an Instructional Designer and Peter, who works as an Account Manager at a Liberty Village tech company, are currently at the intersection between informal entertaining and sit-down dinner parties. Regardless of entertaining style, they're already known for their gourmet dinners, and as such are loving their new dinnerware and flatware from their HG registry. Complimenti agli sposi 


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