Real Wedding Q&A: Melissa & Edwin

Photographer: Katya Nova Photography | Bella Showroom: NYC | Designer: twobirds

Melissa & Edwin planned a magical wedding in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic. Their closest friends and family met them at the gorgeous Jellyfish for a weekend of relaxation & romance on the beach. Destination- AMAZING. Dresses by twobirds from Bella NYC! #BellaNYC

How did you two meet?

Melissa and Edwin met in 2008. Edwin was a second grade teacher at the school where Melissa had been hired to teach Kindergarten. It all started with a few hellos in the hallway, followed by a string of after school happy hours with a lot of the school staff. The chemistry between Edwin and Melissa was undeniable. They laughed and joked around and it always seemed like there was no one else in the room when they were together. Edwin says he knew from the start, Melissa needed a little more convincing. After knowing each other for about a year, it all changed with one fateful kiss in an elevator.

Details on the proposal!

It was Melissa's 30th birthday. She was freaking out about the milestone birthday.  All of Melissa and Edwin's closest friends had gathered for an afternoon birthday brunch for Melissa. Everyone was having a good time but Edwin was sweating more than usual and seemed to nervously circling the room and mingling.  He kept commenting on how beautiful Melissa looked.  When the cake came out, everyone took out their phones and started recording which Melissa found to be odd. Edwin started speaking and then he got down on one knee. Melissa's initial reaction was "are you serious?". The room erupted with joy and clapping. It was perfect!

Location, location, location! How did you choose your venue? What type of venue were you looking for?

We attended a friend’s destination wedding in Jamaica a few years before we got engaged and loved the idea of getting married and having a vacation with all of our family and friends at the same time. Both of our families are from the Dominican Republic so it was a no brainer for us! We visited Punta Cana right after we got engaged and put down a deposit right away. We couldn’t wait to get married in paradise and be able to incorporate many elements of our Dominican culture.

Jellyfish, Punta Cana, was the perfect venue for us. It combined the ocean, sand, and stars! We got married on the beach with the ocean as our backdrop, had a beautiful reception in the seashell covered restaurant, and danced the night away on our outdoor star light dance floor.

Who designed your beautiful gown? Where did you get it?

I wore an Alvina Valenta gown from Kleinfeld Bridal in NYC. It was the perfect dress for me and I knew as soon as I put it on that it was the one.

Describe the wedding. The look, theme, style, colors, etc.

Our theme was tropical Dominican elegance.  We wanted bright tropical colors that enhanced the natural beauty of the Dominican Republic and our venue but still was elegant and felt like a wedding.  Our colors were coral and navy blue with a touch of gold.  We incorporated the color scheme throughout our day from the flowers and reception setup to our getting ready robes.

For entertainment we had a band that played Dominican music and our crazy hour was a "Dominican Carnival" that incorporated many traditions and music from the Dominican Republic.

We also included many personal touches. Each guest was given a mini beach ball upon arrival to our venue and instructed to keep it until after the ceremony.  Our friends and family threw the mini beach balls into the air (not at us) as we walked back down the aisle as husband and wife.

We did a unity sand ceremony using sand that matched our wedding colors to symbolize us joining our lives as one.

Each table for our reception was named after a place that held significance for us and our relationship.  There was a frame at each table with details on the location, a map, and why it was special to us on our journey as a couple.

Edwin also made me a beautiful personalized book “The story of our love” as my wedding gift that had all the things he loves about me. I gifted him a personalized watch box with a brand new watch that he had been eyeing for years and never purchased.

We also honored our close family members that have passed with a collage frame on our welcome table that said “Share a toast with…” and had all of their pictures.

Tell us about your bridesmaid dresses!

I fell in love with the Twobirds convertible dress and knew that it was perfect for my group of girls. I had 6 bridesmaids and all of them were different shapes and sizes but the dress fit beautifully on every single girl.

I decided to have my Maid of Honor wear navy blue and the rest of the girls wore coral to match our colors.  The colors blended beautifully and were gorgeous in the tropical setting on the beach.  Each girl got to decide which style worked best for them and I got them all brooches for a final touch that added just the right amount of bling.

Any must haves, must dos, or can’t live withouts?  Anything you would do differently?

For me the band, starlight dance floor, and the crazy hour entertainers were must haves.  They tied in all of the elements of our theme and had our guests dancing all night.

Favorite memory from the day!

Our first dance as husband and wife. We did a three song medley of “Never Felt This Way” by Alicia Keys, “Mi Corazoncito” by Aventura and “Poision” by Bell Biv DeVoe. No one knew that we had choreographed moves and that we were mixing different songs. It was the perfect mix of emotion, Dominican culture, and fun! The first dance ended with cold fire sparklers illuminating the dance floor and our guests were wowed!

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