Archive for Jessica Moy

A DIY, Budget-Friendly Wedding in Surrey, British Columbia

Real Weddings

For Bethany and Benny, a guest list of 100 and budget of $5000 was not a problem. With a little creativity and the help of family and friends they were able to easily keep cost of their celebration in check.

The couple held a casual backyard wedding in Surrey, British Columbia where the bride’s parents, who are officiants with Hey Rev, were highly involved with the wedding planning. Along with wearing her grandmother’s wedding ring, Beth also wore her mom’s wedding dress. Her mother bought the dress two weeks after she started dating Bethany’s father and paid $250 for it 30 years ago. “It came complete with big poofy sleeves, cuffs and a high tight collar,” Beth says. “But my amazing mom trimmed away the sleeves, cuffs, collar, added a black lace trim to the bottom and a black ribbon bodice to open the back to make it more modern.” The bride’s bouquet was also crafted by her mom. She asked the women in her daughter’s life to send her brooches and wired each one over silk hydrangea to form a one-of-a-kind sparkling gem-filled bouquet.

Benny’s family, who only speaks Russian, arrived from Israel a few days before the wedding. Bethany’s side of the family did their best to learn a few words before they came over and during the wedding Benny helped out by providing simple translation cheat-sheets covering phrases such as “my name is” and “welcome to our family.”

Bethany Sheppard and Benjamin Manelis, September 30, 2012, Surrey, British Columbia.

Photography courtesy of Evelyn Ford Photography.

Ceremony and reception location: The bride’s parents’ backyard
Bridal gown: The bride wore her mother’s dress
Bridal party attire: Mai Tai
Cake: Cornflake Cake made by the bride’s mother, Tracy Sheppard
Caterer: Canuel Caterers
Favours: Bags of homemade cookies baked by the bride’s aunt
Wedding planner, flowers and stationery: The bride’s mother, Tracy Sheppard
Music: Craig Robins (

See all photos from this budget-friendly wedding in Surrey.

A Nature-Inspired Wedding in Tofino, British Columbia

Real Weddings

In a twist of fate, this couple met at an outdoor gear shop in Whistler, B.C. Brigitte was working at the shop and Geoff came in to ask for directions to a local rock climbing spot.

Not too long after, the couple got engaged and planned a wedding inspired by the rugged west coast. Nature was featured prominently in every detail of this celebration, from the single-layered forest cake (with owl cake toppers) to the lovely centrepieces — rocks collected by the couple adorned with tea lights.

The bride’s most memorable moment was the first look, which took place on the beach before the ceremony. “After we cried at seeing each other so gussied up, Geoff reached into his jacket pocket and pulled out a mini Cliff Bar,” Brigitte explains. He knew she hadn’t eaten much and he didn’t want her to pass out. “You know you’re marrying the right guy when he thinks about your potential hypoglycemic state before your wedding,” Brigitte laughs.

Brigitte Mah and Geoff Suter, September 15, 2012. Tofino, British Columbia.

Photography courtesy of Chris Boar and Kim Eijdenberg.

Ceremony: Cox Bay Beach
Reception/caterer: Long Beach Lodge Resort
Bridal gown: Lisa’s Bridal Salon
Bridal party attire: Vera Wang from David’s Bridal
Groom’s tux: Tommy Bahama
Cake: Coastal Cake Company (250-586-5503)
Favours: Chocolate truffles and donated money to a backcountry huts project in Whistler
Wedding planner: Linda Marshall
Hair and makeup: Studio One
Flowers: Crab Apple Floral Design
Stationery: Cards of Wood for invitations and DIY for all others with materials bought from Michaels

See more photos from this nature-inspired wedding in Tofino, British Columbia.

A Rustic Fall Wedding in Stoney Creek, Ontario

Real Weddings

Inspired by the Tuscan landscape and visions of their honeymoon to Europe, Matthew and Jenna planned their rustic wedding celebration with warm hues, a relaxed atmosphere and elegant personalized touches.

Located on the shore of Lake Ontario, the historic Edgewater Manor was the perfect setting for the couple’s celebration.  Their ceremony was complete with Jones Soda refreshments, playful hors d’oeuvres such as bite-sized fish and chips, and bubble wands for all of their guests.

The best moment, according to the bride, was during the photo session after the ceremony. “Our photographer had asked us to position ourselves upon some large rocks on the edge of the lake,” Jenna says. “While the photographers were setting up, we had a private moment to take in the fact that we were now husband and wife.”

Once inside for the reception, the guests were treated with a classical guitarist, a candy buffet and a photo booth where they were encouraged to choose from a wide variety of colourful props to take memorable pictures with.

“One of our favourite details was the time capsule,” Jenna says. “We provided an old 1940’s vintage typewriter and cards to type on and encouraged guests to share their sentiments on the day, their wisdom and advice for the years to come with us.”  The idea was that the couple would open the time capsule on their 10th wedding anniversary to have the chance to reflect back on their fairytale wedding day.

Jenna Vaicius and Matt Chivers, September 8, 2012. Stoney Creek, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of SBP Photography.

Ceremony and reception location: Edgewater Manor
Bridal gown: Vera Wang at David’s Bridal
Bridal party attire: David’s Bridal
Groom’s tux: Jeff’s Guyshop
Favours: Donation to the Canadian Cancer Society and a candy bar
Wedding planners: That Certain Something
Caterer: Edgewater Manor
Music: Foxy Productions (
Hair and makeup: Pretty in Pink Mobile Hair and Makeup
Flowers: Blooms and Blossoms
Stationery: Michael’s
Officiant: Married by Mandi
Bow ties: Randa Accessories
Late night hot dog vendor: Gerard “the hot dog guy”

See all photos from this rustic end-of-summer wedding in Stoney Creek, Ontario.

Destination Wedding Logistics: The Nitty-Gritty Details of Marrying Abroad


Photo courtesy iStockphoto.

Planning a destination wedding in Cuba, France, or even Kenya? Before you and your guests enjoy the wonders of the world, there are administrative details and restrictions to look into. Here are a few pointers to consider before saying “I do” at your dream destination.

1. How long do I have to wait to get married when I arrive?

Certain countries require couples to spend a designated number of days in that country before getting married. Rules differ from country to country so make sure to thoroughly research your chosen destination.

  • Las Vegas, Jamaica, Caymen Islands, St. Lucia, Costa Rica or Dominican Republic: You may get married upon arrival.
  • China: At least one spouse must reside in the country.
  • Cuba: You must be on the island for at least 72 hours.
  • France: At least one member of the couple must be in the the country for 40 days.
  • Mexico: You both must be in the country for at least four business days, plus take a blood test upon arrival.
  • St. Maarten: You both must be in the country for at least ten days. Divorced women may not marry until 306 days have passed since getting their divorce finalized.

If you don’t want to wait days or weeks, you can perform a symbolic destination wedding. You can legally marry in Canada and have a ceremony in the exotic locale of your choice to avoid the hassle.

2. When should I book my destination wedding?

In some destinations, you must sign appropriate legal papers before getting married. For example, if you want to get married in Australia, you must get a notice of Intended Marriage form from the Australian embassy or consulate and it must be signed by an Australian Consular Official or an Australian Diplomatic Officer, and filed with your officiant a minimum of one month before your wedding. Typically, you should book your destination wedding a year ahead of your desired ceremony date. This gives you, your guests and the staff at your venue of choice ample time to get organized.

3. How do I figure out marriage contracts and what papers to bring?

Marriage laws differ all over the world but countries that allow you to marry upon arrival will likely require the least amount of paperwork. That said, be mindful of the fine print. Mexico, Cuba and Dominican Republic require translation of legal documents into Spanish, which can be a hassle. If you want to wed in Cuba and you haven’t been married before, you need your birth certificate, passport and a tourist card (which you can get through your travel agent of airline). If you were divorced, you must also produce a divorce certificate. If widowed, you must produce a Certificate of Marriage and a Certificate of Spouse’s Death.

Before you go, make sure to check with your chosen destination’s tourism board to see if any paperwork requirements have changed. Make inquiries about marriage laws with your travel agent before you book and get friendly with your venue’s onsite wedding coordinator to make sure all of the details have been handled well ahead of time so your wedding abroad is completely stress-free.

A Pretty Parisian Wedding in Vancouver, British Columbia

Real Weddings

Inspired by the dreamy ambience of the city of light, Richelle and Matthew went to town creating a chic wedding packed with Parisian delights. “Everything about France is romantic, enchanting and intimate, which is exactly what we imagined our wedding to be,” Richelle explains. From elegant gold chairs and decadent French macarons to a Paris-themed luggage box (used to collect cards), the two ensured that not a single detail was overlooked. For favours, Richelle and her sister-in-law crafted soaps and wrapped them up in lace bows. “All the male guests received shea butter, while the females received an orchid scent with rose petals,” Richelle recalls. “We chose those fragrances because they tied in perfectly with our theme—delicate and fresh.”

Richelle and Matthew McCourt, August 11, 2012, Vancouver, British Columbia.

Photography courtesy of Jordana Dickson.

Ceremony and reception location: HMCS Discovery Royal Canadian Naval Reserve
Bridal gown: Allure Bridals from La Belle Elaine’s
Bridal party attire: Le Chateau
Groom’s tux: Black & Lee
Cake: Happy Cakes, Thomas Haas Bakery
Caterer: Austin Gourmet
Wedding planners: Epic Events
Flowers: Balconi Flower Design Studio
Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas

See more photos from this pretty Parisian wedding in Vancouver.

A Minimalist Art Gallery Wedding in Toronto, Ontario

Real Weddings

A wedding honouring Rebecca’s Chinese heritage and Tudor’s Romanian roots was imperative for these two. “We wanted a celebration that represented our cultures but still reflected us as a couple,” Rebecca explains. As a huge Canadian fashion enthusiast, Rebecca found the perfect way to integrate her love of clothes with Tudor’s Romanian background. “I had my bridesmaids wear one-of-a-kind dresses designed by Romanian-Canadian designer Lucian Matis,” Rebecca happily shares. “Tudor returned the favour and wore a bespoke suit from Hong Kong,” she notes. For dinner, the couple treated their 45 guests to appetizers inspired by Rebecca’s culture. “Our chef took the traditional eight-course Chinese wedding meal and distilled the courses down into canapés—they were brilliant,” Rebecca exclaims. “Everything about our wedding, from the walk down the aisle to our first wedding song and the delicious food, made the day all the more special.”

 Rebecca Leung and Tudor Comsa, August 12, 2012, Toronto, Ontario.

Photography Courtesy of Naomi Studios.

Ceremony location:
Walker Court, Art Gallery of Ontario
Reception location: Baille Court, Art Gallery of Ontario
Bridal gown:
Lucian Matis
Bridal party attire:
Lucian Matis
Groom’s tux:
Ralph Lauren Black Label 
Dufflet Bakery
Caterer: Art Gallery of Ontario
Favours: Art Gallery of Ontario
Wedding planner:
Amy Hopkins (
LaNai Gabriel and the Free People
Hair and makeup: Candace Lim (  
Poppies Stationery: Paper and Poste

View more photos of this minimalist art gallery wedding here.

A Classic-Meets-Vintage Wedding in Toronto, Ontario

Real Weddings

For landscape architects Jessica and Steve, finding a beautiful wedding venue was high on their priority list. Enter the scenic Estates of Sunnybrook, a site famous for its manicured lawns and historic buildings—the venue was a match made in heaven for the design-loving duo. With a classic-meets-vintage wedding vibe in mind, the two ensured that all the details of their day, from Jessica’s layered Vera Wang gown to their three-tiered white floral wedding cake, fit with their theme. And to show off their crafty sides, the two created a welcome table made from an old library card cabinet. To refurbish the piece, Jessica and Steve inserted beautiful Japanese paper below custom-cut panes of glass to make the top look decorative. “It was a labour of love,” Jessica expresses. “After the wedding we added legs to it, and now we use it as a side table in our new home.”

Jessica Russell & Steve Euser, June 16, 2012, Toronto, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of Boyfriend/Girlfriend.

Ceremony and reception location: The Estates of Sunnybrook
Bridal gown: Vera Wang
Bridal party attire: Jenny Yoo, Moores
Groom’s tux: Tombolini
Cake: Bobbette & Belle
Wedding planners: Melissa Andre Events
Music: DJ Dave Campbell, Third From the Sun, Wellington Music
Flowers: Wild Thyme
Stationery: Minted, Papertalk Press

See more photos from this Classic-Meets-Vintage Wedding in Toronto, Ontario:


A Pretty Vintage Wedding in Toronto, Ontario

Real Weddings

Rebecca and Mathieu both grew up in close-knit families, so they decided to surround their wedding with details that were inspired by loved ones. The couple’s old-fashioned postcard table and a wheelbarrow filled with flowers displayed their parents’ and grandparents’ wedding photos, while their colour palette of white, grey and yellow was influenced by Rebecca’s parents. “I knew I wanted our colour scheme to be classy and simple,” Rebecca describes. “My parents’ wedding colours were also yellow and white, so that was a neat touch.” One of Mathieu’s favourite details was the cigar and scotch bar. “We used vintage family ashtrays and some of Mathieu’s cigar box collection pieces to display the cigars,” Rebecca explains. The couple’s party was full of other antique touches such as teacups, lace dresses and 1920’s music that were seamlessly brought together for their chic, sophisticated family affair.

Rebecca Simon and Mathieu Plouffe, May 20, 2012, Toronto, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of Jess Baumung and Vanessa Heins Boyfriend/Girlfriend Photography.

Ceremony and reception location: Graydon Hall Manor
Bridal gown: Monique Lhuillier from White Toronto
Bridal party attire: Jenny Yoo from White Toronto
Groom’s tux: Hugo Boss
Cake: Short & Sweet Cupcakes
Macarons: Butter Avenue
Caterer: Couture Cuisine
Favours: LOV tea boxes from Kusmi Tea Boutique
Music: Maximum DJ
Makeup: Fidela Sum ( and Jackie Gideon Beauty Inc
Flowers: Bliss Events
Stationery: DIY by the bride
Wedding planner: Tara O’Grady from Bliss Events

View all the photos from this grey and white vintage wedding in Toronto, Ontario.

A Vintage Chic Wedding in Mississauga, Ontario

Real Weddings

Timing is everything—and that saying most definitely applies to Christine and Stephen’s relationship. The two first met while working on their college newspaper, but they didn’t start dating until they coincidentally ended up in Oxford, England at the same time (where they were both taking summer courses). Come wedding day, the two kept things chic and sweet by creating a romantic atmosphere with a space decked with mauve and peach florals, and pretty purple bridesmaid dresses. “We held the ceremony outside on the patio,” Christine explains. “Then we had a sit-down dinner inside complete with candy bars, mini-cupcakes and a cake.” To complete their timeless celebration, the two opened up the dance floor with their first dance to Elton John’s “Your Song”. “You really can’t go wrong with a classic,” Christine smiles. “We danced until two in the morning—it was unforgettable, and it went by more quickly than we ever imagined.”

Christine Creighton amd Stephen Hutchison, July 14, 2012, Mississauga, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of Taralea Cutler.

Ceremony and reception location: The Glenerin Inn
Bridal gown: Pronovias from Becker’s Bridal
Bridal party attire: Donna Morgan from Nordstrom
Groom’s tux: Suit Supply
Cake: I Do Wedding Cakes
Cupcakes: Victoria’s Baked Goods
Music: Impact DJ
Hair: Yolandi Houston
Makeup: Amy Harper
Flowers: Pink Twig
Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas

See more photos from this vintage chic wedding in Mississauga.

An Elegant Fall Wedding in Winnipeg, Manitoba

Real Weddings

Hosting a fall wedding was an obvious choice for Carolyn and Robert, who both love the rich seasonal shades. “I love the fall leaves, and I knew I wanted pictures of myself in a wedding dress sitting in a pile of leaves,” Carolyn laughs. For their reception, the couple chose cranberry-coloured tablecloths and chair sashes with gold wrapped into the centrepieces. “I was scared the colours wouldn’t match, but it worked out, and in the end I was very happy,” Carolyn admits. As for their wedding song, that too was an easy choice, as the two picked “Layla” by Eric Clapton–a song they both love listening to while cruising down the highway. “It kind of connected us because it invoked the same reaction in both of us,” Carolyn smiles. They found an acoustic version for their first dance and now whenever they hear the song they both agree it reminds them of their perfect day.

Carolyn Kristina Hudek and Robert Bryan Tetlock, October 13, 2012, Winnipeg, Manitoba

Photography courtesy of Rygiel Photography.

Ceremony location:
Wesley Hall, University of Winnipeg
Reception location: Fort Garry Hotel
Bridal gown and bridal party attire: L.A. Collection
Groom’s tux: Moores
Cake: Chocolate Zen Bakery
Caterer: Fort Garry Hotel
Favours: Wedding Favours Canada
Music: Wavelength Sound & Light
Hair: Cutting Loose Hair Design
Flowers: Lakewood Florist & Gifts
Stationery: Cards and Pockets

See more photos from this elegant fall wedding in Winnipeg, Manitoba.

A Patriotic Canada Day Wedding

Real Weddings

Brides don’t get much more patriotic than Kathryn — she even named her first born child Hudson after the Hudson Bay Company — so it was no surprise that this proud Canuck chose to marry the man of her dreams on Canada Day!

Moving in with each other three months after their initial meeting at a country bar, Kathryn and Jordan did not waste any time in starting their lives together. In 2011, three weeks after Jordan got down on one knee and proposed, they received exciting news that Kathryn was pregnant!

The new mother and bride-to-be spent hours making decorations for her cottage-themed Canada Day wedding. Paying homage to the Canadian flag, Kathryn chose a red and white colour palette and maple leaf accents. Bridesmaids, dressed in white strapless dresses, donned cowboy boots in honour of the fact that Kathryn and Jordan met in a country bar while groomsmen were decked out in suits accented with red vests and ties.

For their first dance Kathryn and Jordan chose “Lost Together” by Blue Rodeo, a classic Canadian band.

“Our best moment was standing together as husband and wife looking out over Innis Lake,” Kathryn says, “In the background ‘Oh Canada’ was playing and one of the most beautiful firework display we had ever seen was right before our eyes.”

Kathryn Leigh Paisley Brown and Jordan Richard Minderlein, July 1, 2012. Caledon, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of ShutterHead Photography.

Ceremony and reception location:
The Royal Ambassador
Bridal gown: Wtoo Brides from Becker’s Bridal
Bridal party attire:
Bill Levkoff from Bridesmaids Bliss
Groom’s tux: Alfred Sung from Moores
Cake: I do! Wedding Cakes
Donations to Camp Tapawingo and candy bags from Creative Bag
Wedding planner: Joanna Efpatridis of Yorkville Weddings
Music: EJ Entertainment (905-731-5675)
Hair and makeup:
Donisi Hair Design, (905-857-3783)
Flowers and décor:
Grand Entrance Design
Caterer: The Royal Ambassador
Stationery: Ingledew Invites
Fireworks Canada
Guitarist: Norman, (519-836-0591)
Transportation: Bennington Worldwide

See all of the photos from this gorgeous Canada Day wedding in Caledon, Ontario.

A Traditional Greek Wedding in Vancouver

Real Weddings

A traditional Greek wedding was important for Angela and Bobby. The pair actually met at Greek school and became a couple several years later when Angela ran into Bobby at his family restaurant. Following in their parents’ footsteps, the two wed at St. George’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral and the ceremony was performed by the same priest who married both of their sets of parents! After the “I dos”, the two swept guests off their feet with a lavish reception at the Hellenic Community Centre. “The venue we chose was a giant old gym and I hired a decorator to beautifully transform it,” Angela says. “It was more than Bobby and I had hoped.” To end their evening, the two served a classic Greek dessert: baklava. “We had aunties come over to my parents’ house to help my mom make it,” Angela explains. “It was wonderful to see all the ladies in the kitchen working so hard to create this treat for us.”

Angela and Bobby, May 26, 2012, Vancouver, British Columbia.

Photography courtesy of Jasalyn Thorne Photography.

Ceremony and reception location: St. George’s Greek Orthodox Cathedral and Hellenic Community Centre
Bridal gown: Enzoani from La Belle Elaine’s Bridal Boutique
Bridal party attire: Bari Jay
Groom’s tux: The Tux Store
Cake: Cadeaux Bakery
Wedding planner: Jen Opsahl (
Music: DJ Dimitri (Dimitri Pantazis) (
Hair and makeup: Jayna Marie (
Bridal party flowers: Fiorire
Décor flowers: Garden Party Flowers
Stationery: Printable Press

See all of the photos from this traditional Greek wedding in Vancouver.

An Elegant Wedding With Purple Accents In Calgary

Real Weddings

Mutual friends introduced Miranda and Hin, and when the two met for a casual dinner they never expected the encounter to change their lives forever. However, the pair instantly connected and exchanged numbers—and so began their love story. When it came to planning their wedding, the pair visited a few venues and immediately fell for the equestrian facility at Spruce Meadows. “When I first saw it, I saw a spark,” Miranda explains. “On our wedding day the beautiful chandeliers and draping in the ceiling was exactly what we had envisioned.” For their celebration, Miranda and Hin invited 120 guests and the bride took on all the planning herself, decking the venue with purple florals and hanging twinkling lavender lights behind the head table. “The whole wedding planning experience was amazing. I loved it so much,” Miranda smiles. “I am very particular and detail-oriented so getting our wedding photos back was amazing—I could see how everything came together!”

Miranda Hill and Hin Wu, July 21, 2012, Calgary, Alberta.

Photography courtesy of Wei Quek from Photobolic.

Ceremony location: Spruce Meadows (Stone Stair Case)
Reception location:
Spruce Meadows (Gallery on the Green)
Bridal gown:
Ethos Bridal 
Bridal party attire: 
Bellezza Bridal Group
Groom’s tux: The Bridal Centre
Cake: Suzanne Wu (the groom’s mother)
Caterer:  Michelle Kuenz from Great Events Catering
Yann Haute Patisserie 
Jason Cathcart from  Dance! Shout! Productions
Katrina Hill at Red Bloom Salon
Makeup: Lori Bernardo at Red Bloom Salon
Edralyn Chapman from Flower Artistry 
Amanda Jones from Glimpz Invitations
Marriage commissioner:
Abby Charchun (
Cullinan Jewellers

View more photos of this elegant wedding in Calgary.

A Vibrant, Whimsical Wedding in Toronto

Real Weddings

Lauren and Steven studied anthropology together at the University of Toronto, but it wasn’t until a conference in New Orleans that the two realized they were meant to be more than just classmates. A year later, Steven romantically proposed to Lauren during a casual skating date at Nathan Phillips Square. For their wedding day Lauren shares their theme was “a bit of both of us,” but she especially loved their favours—cherished recipes printed on sets of magnets for their 180 guests. “Each recipe was tested and rewritten multiple times, and we spent hours designing the magnets themselves,” Lauren exclaims. The bride and her guests also raved about the catering by The Food Dudes, who served wild halibut, sticky sweet braised short ribs on a cauliflower purée, and liquid nitrogen ice cream. “They built a kitchen in a tiny space, and then served remarkable appetizers on rustic wooden platters,” Lauren recalls.

Lauren Classen & Steven Sovran, August 4, 2012. Toronto, Ontario.

Photography courtesy of Tara McMullen.

Ceremony location: St. Paul’s Basilica
Reception location: Biltmore Domicile
Bridal gown: Cabaret Vintage
Bridal party attire: BHLDN, Anne Hung, H&M, Karamea
Groom’s tux: Tuxedo Royale
Cake: Bobbette and Belle
Caterer: Food Dudes
Favours: DIY
Wedding planners: Mona Ng Events & Design (
Music: Floh Back Productions
Hair and makeup: Ivy Lam Hair & Make-up
Flowers: Sweet Woodruff

See more photos of this vibrant, whimsical wedding in Toronto, Ontario: