Hope you enjoyed part 1 of Sean and Mona’s real wedding. We left it that Sean asked Mona to marry him… Of course she said yes!, and so here is a few more details on the actual day itself!
The wedding planning process was approached with a strong sense of anxiety. While Sean and Mona were indeed going to be married, neither one of them had any experience with wedding planning. In his frustration Sean would frequently joke, “How hard can it be?” It quickly turned out to be a far grander undertaking than he had anticipated. Sean’s search for florists alone yielded little more than a series of awkward interactions with substandard venders, and his growing frustration with trying to locate a suitable venue had proven to be for less fruitful that he had hoped. But hopes were high, and they would soon find hope in a chance meeting with a prospective wedding photographer who could change everything.
Paula Player, a fledgling photographer and owner of Paula Player Photography in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, had been suggested to Mona by a mutual friend. Paula’s natural abilities in photography had helped her to develop a strong local reputation, and had come highly recommended by various businesses from around the city. As Sean and Mona learned that her expertise and conspicuously impressive intuition were an asset. Placing their faith Paula’s leads proved wise, resulting in a veritable domino-effect of consecutive hits, including successful meetings with their venue, florist, baker, and caterer. Within two weeks the wedding was ready to be prepared.
Early in the planning process, Mona and Sean had unanimously decided on a color theme of black, red, and white. The colors, representative of the couple’s favorites, would serve as a bold contrast to one another, and would appeal to the flower wedding’s arrangements. Despite the seemingly Christmas-esque choice, Mona’s meeting with the florist of Myrtle Beach’s Little Shop of Flowers had reassured her that the colors would stun even the most seasoned wedding guests.
Finding the ‘One’
Despite a streak of early successes in the planning process, the search for Mona’s dress had become a slightly more difficult task. Weeks of unsuccessful searching had left her with a perpetual sense of despair, and the window of time to assure maximum quality service was fast closing. It was in the final week of this window that she found the dress that she described as, “The One. As soon as I put it on I knew that it was ‘The One’. I looked and felt like a princess.” The dress, a David’s Bridal Classic A-line strapless beaded draped layered pick-up satin wedding dress, was an undeniable hit. Her dark, Indian skin contrasted beautifully, accented by a silver handmade jeweled feathered headcomb provided by Bijuju. And while the dress dazzled the guests, the shoes were equally stunning. A pair of flawlessly crafted white Badgley Mischka‘s, a lone ankle strap frosted with white jewels, her feet were as dazzling as the rest of her ensemble. Taken back by the outfit’s utter majesty Mona’s friends were heard to giddily declair, “Oh my god, I hope I look that beautiful on my wedding day!”
Selecting the Bridesmaids and Groomsmen were easy choices, as both Sean and Mona had decided early on to have only one each. Mona’s Maid of Honor and lone Bridesmaid, her younger sister, would arrive from England in the weeks before the wedding to assure the proper fitting of her David’s Bridal rose red dress. The choice of flowers included a white bouquet with small red roses, set to contrast Mona’s bridal bouquet of red roses with white. The Sean’s lone Groomsman, his best friend from the Marines, would don a black suit with a like-colored red tie.
Choosing the appropriate suit for Sean was not a difficult undertaking. A modest black three-piece suit from Men’s Warehouse combined with a rose-colored tie and a white dress shirt inspired the theme mimicked by the rest of the men in the wedding. Sean’s Best Man, his two brothers, and the officiant, all sported black suits, white shirts, and red ties. So too was the theme for the women, as Mona’s sister, mother, niece, and future in-laws were each garbed in short, knee-length, strapless Taffeta Ruched dresses, also rose red.
While Sean and Mona had largely designed their special day to appear very unique in both color and layout, the biggest appeal of the wedding lay in how much of themselves they included in every aspect of the wedding, going to great lengths to incorporate as many of their friends in the ceremony and reception as possible. The wedding’s officiant was Sean’s good friend Law, whose imposing height of 6’7”, combined with a hulking musculature, gave him an almost otherworldly presence. The wedding march was performed via guitar by Sean and Mona’s friend Derick, the same man who played so elegantly during Sean’s proposal to his future wife many months before. Derick’s poetic mastery of the guitar flawlessly performed Israel Kamakawiwoʻole’s “Somewhere Over the Rainbow”, accompanied by his brother. Ushers were selected from friends and family, and photography was masterfully captured with surgical precision by the couple’s new good friend, Paula Player.
The first dance
The couple’s search for the appropriate first dance was left in the care of Sean. After sifting through countless wedding anthems he came across a unique version of, “Truly, Madly, Deeply,” a song originally performed by Savage Garden, but in this version performed by Cascada. Sean, impressed by the appealing sound of a woman singing the popular 90s ballad, played it for Mona who immediately concurred that it was the perfect first dance.
Catering included an astounding array of various 5-star buffet-style dishes provided by Annie’s Ocean 1, complete with a top shelf open bar which maintained the celebration’s momentum well into the late evening. Accentuating the various unique properties of the wedding, the wedding cake was dashingly unique. Opting out of a traditional wedding cake, Mona had in her search discovered an incredible baker from Incredible Edibles. Her approach of detailing taking small, cylindrical wraps, each individually filled with a different variation of light and dark chocolate cakes, was a massive hit among the guests. The cakes, which sat atop a multi-tiered silver serving plate, were placed on a table adjacent to the evening’s most popular attraction: a milk chocolate fondue fountain. The fountain served not only as colorful addition to an already impressive wedding display, but also served as a source of entertainment for the children of the guests.
The wedding was executed flawlessly, and is remembered by those in attendance as a time of love, laughter, and a testament to Sean and Mona’s style of fun-loving creativity. Even to this day they attribute the day’s success in large part to the fact that they both made it a priority to befriend each of the venders, and not simply treat them as means to an end. It was noted by Sean during the evening hours of the reception that the vendors had not only personally overseen the details of their contributions, but had in fact become part of the wedding itself. The attention they paid to their trade was more indicative of friendship rather than business, and showed in the quality of what would go down as the happiest day in the lives of Sean and Mona Catto.
Thank you so much Sean and Mona for sharing your day with us! The love between you two is so incredibly strong that nothing life throws at you will ever be able to break you apart. Challenges like those you initially had to overcome have undoubtedly forged and refined your love! Keep loving and cherishing each other they way you already do.
Image copyrights: Paula Player Photography