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Two Weddings

With much deserved recent public attention on legalizing gay marriage across the land this summer, my private matrimonial focus was to preside at two traditional weddings in September. First, two former students of mine, David Parker, in history, and Jess Andreola, in beekeeping, surprised me with their request. Then, a month later our elder son, Tim, called from Bangkok to say that he and his Thai fiancée, Natt, wanted to get married in Vermont this fall. Would I officiate?

Since 2008, Vermont law has permitted individuals who register with the secretary of state and pay a fee of $100, to become a temporary, one-day officiant for the purpose of performing a specific marriage ceremony. I registered, paid the fee – a bargain, I thought - and in the span of eight days, performed two weddings - first at Burlington's Intervale and a week later, on a hilltop in St. Johnsbury.

[07:49] George Clooney and wife Amal Clooney arrive at the Metropolitan Museum of Art Costume Institute Gala 2015

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This was as close to the priesthood as I’ll ever get, so I took my role seriously - even though both couples wanted secular weddings and I was only a bit player.

I talked to friends with enduring marriages. And a justice of the peace I know who’s done scores of weddings gave me a great check list that ended with a note to remember "It's not about you."

It reminded me of advice I’d received from a wise Waterbury farmer upon my first speech as a Legislator: "Stand up and be recognized; speak up and be heard; sit down and be appreciated."

Undeterred, I decided to reflect briefly on the institution and practice of marriage.

What makes a lasting marriage, I asked rhetorically. Surely love, but perhaps even more, respect. The bonds of matrimony should not be chains, but many silken threads woven together. A good marriage consists of the parabolas of two individual lives that depart on their own arcs and then return to continue their joint journey. And a good marriage requires the surrender of some of your selves for the greater good of the union.

The vows were appropriately the couples’ own, and the rings were conventional, except that in our son's case, Augie the border collie was ring bearer.

And finally, both locations had special meaning. The Intervale wedding was not far from the hives of bees where I’d taught Jess. The wedding in St. Johnsbury was at the precise spot where my wife and I were married 44 years ago.

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08:14 Publié dans wedding | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


Curry and Danishek marry

Dr. Alecia Elaine Curry and Michael Joseph Danishek were married on Aug. 15, 2015 at 6:30 p.m. in Mount Pleasant at South Jefferson Baptist Church with Dr. Tommy Oglesby, pastor of South Jefferson Baptist Church, officiating.

The bride, Dr. Alecia Elaine Curry, currently resides in Atlanta, Ga., formerly of Mount Pleasant. She attended Mount Pleasant High School, Baylor University, University of Texas Medical School, and Emory University Medical Residency Program (anesthesia department). She is employed as an anesthesiologist at Grady Hospital in Atlanta, Ga., and she is an associate professor of anesthesia at Emory University. She is the daughter of Rhonda and Allen Curry; the granddaughter of Betty Johnson of Mount Pleasant and the late Harold Johnson of Athens; and Nancy Curry and the late Leon Curry of Jacksonville.

The groom, Michael Joseph Damishek, of Atlanta, Ga., attended Tucker High School and Reinhardt College. He is employed by Smoke Rise Baptist Church as director of multimedia productions. He is the son of Dr. and Mrs. Richard Danishek of Ellijah, Ga.; and the grandson of the late Rosie Charles Danishek, and the late Mr. and Mrs. Robert Carter, all of Atlanta, Ga.

Dr. Alecia Elaine Curry and Michael Joseph Danishek

The bride looked elegantly radiant in a beautiful custom-designed ivory A-line gown by Pronovius. The bridesmaids dresses perth featured a bateau neckline delicately defined by pearl accented redrode lace. Lace appliques sprinkled with pearls covered the bodice of tuille over ivory peau-de-soie. Lace appliques with ivory and gemstones embroidery cascaded gently past the waist of the gown to midway down the chapel length skirt of multi-layered English netting. The waist was accented with a gemstone belt tied with ivory ribbon in the back.

The cathedral length veil of bridal illusion was framed with Alecon lace with beaded and sequined embellishments.

The bridal bouquet was a mixed floral arrangement of coral peonies, white O’hara garden roses, coral calla lilies, apricot ranunculus and Juliet garden roses, touched with variegated bush ivy. The stems were wrapped with coral satin ribbon and finished with an antique rhinestone broach.

The bridesmaids wore coral floor length gowns by J. Hjelm. Each dress was in a design chosen by each bridesmaid.

The attendants’ bouquets were made with coral roses, yellow stock, white hydrangeas, soft pink ranunculus, and campanella garden roses with stems wrapped in coral satin ribbon to match the bride.

The matron of honor was Jennifer Newhouse, of Mount Pleasant, sister of the bride.

The bridesmaids were Dr. Britini Eklund, of Atlanta, Ga., friend of the bride; Molly Johnson, of Gainsville, Ga., friend of the bride; Nicole Cox, of Tyler, friend of the bride; Krista Davidson, of Roswell, Ga., sister of the groom; Lydia Morales, of Mount Pleasant, friend of the bride; Dr. Ellen Richter, of Atlanta, Ga., friend of the bride; Jessica Weaver, of Dallas, friend of the bride; Jennifer Brown, of McKinney, friend of the bride.

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The junior bridesmaid was Ashlyn Davidson, of Roswell, Ga., niece of the groom.

Flower girls were Milie Jo Hefner, of Mount Pleasant, friend of the bride; and Tinsley Davidson, of Roswell, Ga., niece of the groom.

Best men were Carter Danishek, of Woodstock, Ga., brother of the groom; and Dr. Richard Danishek, of Elijay, Ga., father of the groom.

The groomsmen were Blake Asters, of Anaheim, Calif., friend of the groom; Antowyn Smith, of Conyers, Ga., friend of the groom; David Prophitt, of Greer, S.C., friend of the groom; Everett Bracken, of Lilburn, Ga., friend of the groom; Brad Curry, of Mount Pleasant, brother of the bride; and Ryan Ecklund, of Atlanta, Ga., friend of the groom.

The church was decorated with eight massive floral arrangements of various colors of roses, ranunculus, calla lilies, hydrangeas, yellow stock, and variegated ivy, spaced from the entrance of auditorium to the platform area. The platform also held seven large candelabras holding 150 candles covering the backdrop of stage. Each pew on center aisle was softly marked with ivory organza and a bouquet of ivory and coral roses and baby breath tied with ivory ribbon.

Wedding music was provided by Evergreen Strings Ensemble of Marshall.

Vocalist were Amy Douglas of Dallas and Jimmy Thompson of Longview. They performed “The Broken Road”, “I Will Be Here”, and “The Prayer.”

Photography was provided by Joyce Cook Photography of Mount Pleasant; Heidi Carter Photography of Mount Pleasant, and A Thousand Word Productions of Tyler.

The parents of the bride hosted a dinner and reception in the main hall of the Titus County Civic Center. The wedding colors of coral and grey were carried out with grey tablecloths, white lace overlays and coral linen napkins. Tables were decorated with fresh flowers that coordinated with bridal bouquet and multi-level water-filled lighted cylinders. Bridal party tables were decorated with extra tall clear vases and large floral arrangements to match table arrangements.

All floral arrangements for wedding and reception were provided by La Bella Blooms of Longview.

The dinner and fruit and vegetable cascades were provided by Traditions Restaurant of Tyler.

Beautiful ice sculptures with the initial ‘D’ on the bottom and Alecia and Michael on the top, done by James Papas Ice Sculptures of Dallas.

The bride’s four-level cake alternated layers of white chocolate vanilla and strawberry with buttercream icing. Mixed flowers adorned the top layer of the cake and the bottom layer was circled by coral and ivory roses and variegated ivy. The bride’s cake was by Calavera Cakery of Longview. The groom’s cake had three square layers. It was a triple chocolate cake covered in chocolate ganache and chocolate peanut buttercups by Weddings, Etc. of Mount Pleasant.

The reception entertainment was provided by Moore Entertainment Group of Mount Pleasant with DJ services and a photo booth. The reception also featured a caricature artist from Two Faced Entertainment Services of Dallas.

At the close of the reception, the bridesmaid and groom were given a bubbles and balloons send off. They left in a 1959 chauffeur-driven Rolls Royce limousine.

The couple honeymoon in Ocho Rios Jamaica. They will return from their honeymoon and reside in Atlanta, Ga.

A rehearsal dinner was hosted by the groom’s family at Los Pinos Winery in Pittsburg.

05:22 Publié dans wedding | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)


How Brideside is bringing tech to the wedding industry

Did you know Chicago has the largest wedding market in the nation?

That may come as a surprise to some, but for one local startup, it’s half the reason they call Chicago home.

“The Chicago consumer is very on trend and sophisticated, but this is a very underserved market from a retail fashion perspective,” said Nicole Staple, co-founder of a concierge-driven e-commerce experience for bridal parties called Brideside.

Brideside is the answer to what Staple and co-founder Sonali Lamba saw as an antiquated industry that e-commerce innovation had all but ignored — and not just in the Windy City. Brides and their bridesmaids often live scattered throughout the country and come in all shapes and sizes, but Staple said until Brideside, there weren’t any tech-enabled alternatives to the traditional on-site bridal boutique experience.

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“Everything from the shopping experience to branding to the type of products being offered were not in line with the way commerce was developing,” she said.

With Brideside, consumers have a smarter, savvier, and cheaper way to find bridal dresses and accessories. Once a bride registers for an account, she is automatically connected with a personal style consultant who will work with her and her bridesmaids to find dresses that work for everyone and ensure they have a personalized and curated experience.

“Whether she’s an expecting mother, plus size, or petite, we make sure that she has a dress that she’ll be happy with and feel beautiful in,” Staple said.

Users can browse the company’s 800-plus collection of dresses and accessories, saving their favorites as they go. In a home try-on structure modeled after Warby Parker and Trunk Club, bridesmaids can have dresses shipped to their houses for $10 dollars a pop to make sure dresses are a good fit.

Staple said they’ve already seen more than 10,000 bridal parties register with the site and have shipped over 4,500 sample dresses.

And it’s not just users who are impressed. The company landed a $1.5 million seed round from strategic investors like Trunk Club’s Rob Chesney and Sittercity’s Genevieve Thiers. DreamIt Ventures also participated with a follow-on investment.

Brideside’s all-woman team currently sits at 15 full-time employees, but a portion of their seed round will be used to grow that headcount — particularly the company’s sales and customer acquisition teams.

In addition, the company will use part of the money to expand their collection. That expansion is already underway, beginning with Brideside’s recently announced exclusive line with esteemed bridal designer Kelly Faetanini.

Based out of a shiny new (and 4200 square foot) West Loop office, Staple said Brideside also wants to build up an offline presence in the city for women who prefer a more traditional experience. She stressed, however, that the level of personalization remains the same both on- and off-line.

And tech, she said, remains at the core of the business.

“By being so data-driven, we are able to collect a ton of insight on the digital bride and millennial consumer,” Staple said. “By leveraging that data and collaborating with someone really innovative on the design side, we launched something that’s a completely new concept in bridal attire.”

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05:05 Publié dans wedding | Lien permanent | Commentaires (0)