We are back in “La Ville-Lumière” toady to share the small and intimate family wedding in France of Michelle and Dan. This Californian couple met at work, known to you and I as the happiest place on earth.. magical Disneyland. Beatrice de Guigne from BgD Photography is the lady behind the beautiful photography and my personal favourite has to be Michelles “Look… no hands” picture on the Eiffel Tower Carousel…. All that practice in Disneyland, the girls a pro!

wedding in France

wedding in France

We wanted to know all the details and Michelle was more than happy to oblige. “We started dating in June 2007 so we have been together almost 4 1/2 years. We had talked about getting married before, and even looked at rings together. He still wanted to surprise me so he bought the ring without me knowing it, telling me he was planning on getting it later in the year. We went for a walk through Disneyland Park, and he pulled out the ring box right in front of the castle! He didn’t get down on one knee, and I think I am even grateful, because I would have been embarassed. I of course said yes and I was very happy to have the ring so much earlier than I had planned. Then we had to drive to my parents house to tell them the news!”

wedding in France

wedding in France

Love this.. a little stroll to the ceremony. They say the best way to discover Paris is by foot and for Michelle, I’m sure the fresh air helped her to calm the nerves. “When we arrived in Paris, we walked around the gardens to find a place to have our ceremony. All of the guests and vendors were meeting up at the hotels so we could bring them to any spot we picked. I got immediately very nervous since the gardens there can be very crowded, and there are events going on, etc. I had to just stop and let it go, and I’m so glad I did because it turned out beautifully.”

And why a destination wedding? Why France? “We had a few things in mind, and most were in California. We considered an arboretum because I really wanted something outdoors. But nothing provided the freedom I wanted to create my perfect wedding. France was the only choice that had everything going for it! It was exotic, I had never been there, it was romantic, it was an opportunity to get our families to go on this big adventure with us. We loved the idea because it was so different to a typical wedding. We never really considered any other location but Paris. We love to travel all over, but Paris is full of romance and so it felt right. There was also something about the Eiffel Tower and the gardens that made it so perfect. So many other places are beautiful, but without a well-known landmark, you may not know where it is. We really wanted our photos to be undeniable that they were in an exotic location. With Paris, we got an extremely well-known landmark – the Eiffel Tower, and we got an outdoor garden wedding. There was nothing else that could compare with it.”

Here it is… !

On planning the Wedding; “It was very difficult to secure plans. We tried finding a local church who would perform the ceremony, we tried bringing an officiant with us, but both plans failed. We were so lucky to have found an officiant who was willing to perform the ceremony through a friend of a friend of a friend! The time difference between San Diego and Paris made it hard to communicate, so the times we had to call had to be carefully planned. There are so many wedding websites which help you to find vendors in the US, but none offered international assistance.” – Oh Michelle, if only you had found FAB sooner! “I was able to find a few French websites that offered a ring of wedding vendors and local ideas, which was great. Bottom line, it just took a lot of time and research. Thankfully, we had a long engagement so I was very patient and it all worked out.”

What advice would you offer to a couple planning a destination wedding? “Give yourself plenty of time to plan. And plenty of time to pack. When it got to the end and packing our suitcase, there were things all over the house – boutonnieres, music CD, hair pins, shoes, etc, and I had to use many checklists and go over everything a million times just to make sure I didn’t forget any tiny thing. When you are travelling, you have to bring everything with you. EVERYTHING. Read about other real weddings for ideas, but mostly a destination wedding allows you to do everything exactly the way you want to. Don’t skimp and if you are in doubt, buy it!!”

And would you change anything Michelle? ” I cannot think of any one thing I would change. Our dinner cruise reception was so perfect and the photos that we are left with from the afternoon make me smile every time I look at them. One thing I will say though is that there’s no reason to be upset about little things – whatever it is that feels like a disaster just becomes a part of your day and you will grow to love that part of the story as time goes on. The whole experience was beyond what I had expected. “

So there you have it. Another gorgeous day in Paris. If you like what you saw, head on over to Beatrice’s website for a good look around, you might even write her an email and I am telling you, she really is lovely! Thanks to Michelle and Dan for sharing their story with us and I’m sure it inspired those of you thinking about Paris to just go for it!

Lindsay and Pamela x

Photographer: BdG Photography | Wedding dress: David’s Bridal | Groomsuit: Men’s Wearhouse | Invitations: Magnet Street | Flowers: DiY from a local flower shop | Boutenniers; Etsy | Ceremony; Reception location: Bateaux Parisiens.


5 Responses

  1. Jenny

    My heart is doing flip flops at this wedding. We’re going to Paris on our honeymoon and I can’t wait.

    Reply
  2. flyawaybride

    How exciting for you Jenny… we will be posting a guide to Paris that might help you on your travels there in the next few weeks so keep a little look out!

    Reply
  3. Michelle

    I love the way this article turned out. I was very happy to be a part of it, and sharing our amazing photos with your readers. You are right; I should have searched more on flyawaybride before my wedding! I hope anyone who is planning a wedding in France loves it as much as we did!

    Reply

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