What’s better than a surprise proposal while on holiday in Napa Valley? Pictures of said proposal! Take a peek at our lovely bride Kate as she said “Yes!” to Matt:
engagement photographer: Alexander Rubin
Super astonished and adorable, right?
Kate’s family is from England, Matt’s is from Canada, and each are close, so it was important to the couple that the wedding be about spending time together while having a blast. So, they set about planning a relaxed-yet-polished celebration at Belcroft Estate that fit the bill…and then some. Family members from both sides of the Atlantic helped create the day’s décor, Kate and Matt choreographed a dance with their wedding party in lieu of a first dance, and their officiant ended up singing (yes, singing!) their blessing.
After seeing a picture of a gown she loved and writing it off because she didn’t think there was enough time, Kate finally discovered it was a Lea-Ann Belter! When she visited us at our Toronto bridal boutique, the rest, as they say, is history.
Dish about how Matt proposed!
“In an olive grove in the hills of Napa at sunset! We arrived in Napa that same day and Matt was so nervous and distracted that I was actually getting a little bit annoyed that he wasn’t fully paying attention on our vacation. When we arrived at Auberge Du Soleil for dinner, we were told our table wasn’t ready and to spend some time in the sculpture garden. Being in heels, I kept resisting walking down the hill to the garden until finally Matt convinced me to go with him (I wasn’t sure why he’d suddenly become so passionately interested in sculptures!). Then I discovered why. We sat down at a table set up for us with Champagne and nibbles and Matt went down on one knee. Little did I know that there was a photographer hiding in the bushes! Alex captured my surprise on camera at just the right time.”
How did you choose your gown?
“Funnily enough, I had a picture saved of a gown that I adored but didn’t know it was designed by Lea-Ann Belter. I had written off any designer gowns because we decided to get married that same year and with only 5 months until the wedding. I honestly thought I wouldn’t be able to have a dress made in time. Having been turned down by a few stores because of time limits, I looked at off-the-rack and second hand shops but couldn’t find anything I loved as much as that dress. So I went back to the picture to find out who the designer was and discovered it was Lea-Ann and she was Canadian with her boutique in Toronto! I called the store immediately and made an appointment – Ginny made my day when I arrived and told me a dress could be made in time. I found “the one” on that first visit and Ginny was amazing from start to finish.”
Tell us about your day!
“We are both so close with our families and friends, even though my family is in England (I moved here 15 years ago), and so the number one goal of the wedding was about spending time with everyone and having a big party! We decided on country chic as our theme at Belcroft Estate to set a relaxed atmosphere while keeping an air of elegance and many people close to us were involved in creating the decor which was a lovely touch.”
What’s your funniest wedding day memory?
“Actually during the ceremony! Our fabulous officiant gave us the most loving and warm ceremony and was so enjoying the moment that while we were signing the registry she politely asked if she could sing our blessing at the end – not something we’d anticipated but she seemed so in-the-moment we thought why not? It was beautiful but the look on everyone’s faces was priceless! If it was a Disney movie, birds and mice would have definitely popped out of the woodwork a-la Cinderella.
Another one is when our MC welcomed everyone and shared he had heard from me how loud my British family were so he challenged the Canadian and British guests to a cheering match. Needless to say the Brits won even though they were outnumbered 3-1!”
What was your favorite wedding day moment?
“I’m sure everyone says this is a tough one because every moment is wonderful on the day (and the best advice we had was to make sure we hired a videographer to look back at it all!). Secretly (or not so anymore!) my favourite moment was at the rehearsal the evening before when Matt struggled to get through his vows because of his tears. That was special.
What was your first dance song?
“Just thinking about this makes me laugh. We decided to do a group choreographed dance with our wedding party to Mr Big “Be with You” – just 10 days before the wedding! We signed up for some lessons and worked with the instructor to design the dance and then quickly taught our 14 groomsmen and bridesmaids the moves by video and random drop-in visits! Nothing like last-minute.”
Describe your wedding day in 5 words or less:
“Can we do it again?”
What was your something old, something new, something borrowed and something blue?
“My something old was a silver charm of a chapel that opens and reveals a bride and groom kneeling in front of the priest. It was a gift from my Grandma when I was a baby that my Mum had kept for me and never told me about until the day I bought my dress. I pinned it inside the skirt with a blue ribbon. My something new was the gown (and also a pair of Jimmy Choos!) and my something borrowed was a set of crystal hair pins from my sister that she wore to her wedding.”
Where did you go on your honeymoon?
“Bora Bora, Tahiti! AKA paradise on earth. No really.”
Any advice for future brides/grooms?
“Definitely hire a great videographer, you won’t regret it.
Also another neat idea we borrowed from my sister was to set up a Honeyfund instead of a gift registry – we already lived together and didn’t need any more household stuff so for those who wanted to give, they could contribute to a part of our honeymoon experience in Tahiti. It was so memorable and we also had jars for people to write notes for us to read on our honeymoon which was hilarious.”