“The moms cried, I cried, Vanessa brought us champagne and we celebrated!!” Dress-shopping happiness in a nutshell. We LOVED hearing about Danielle’s experience at our Toronto bridal boutique. Actually, our sweet bride had a great time with Canadians all around—when she and Chris became engaged, it was during a weekend getaway at Niagara-on-the-Lake, after which the two of them “spent the rest of the weekend frolicking through vineyards and getting wine-tour-tipsy with friendly Canadians.” How funny is that?!
Like the couple themselves, their celebration was classic and fun with plenty of smiles and personal touches—including their unusual, beautiful first dance song, ”Ashokan Farewell“ by folk musician Jay Ungar that was used in Ken Burns’s Civil War documentary.
How did your sweetie propose?
“We drove from Buffalo to Niagara-on-the-Lake for a weekend getaway and he proposed the first day we were there. It was a total surprise which was amazing and I loved it. We spent the rest of the weekend frolicking through vineyards and getting wine-tour-tipsy with friendly Canadians.”
How did you choose your gown?
“I started my search in Buffalo where I live and couldn’t find anything I liked. Since Toronto was so close, my mother, mother-in-law, and I planned a two-day, gown-searching blitz. We set up multiple appointments all over the city. We were unsuccessful the first day, but on the second day, our first appointment was at Lea-Ann Belter.
During my appointment, I worked with Vanessa and she was wonderful. We pulled three dresses to start. She told me to try the one on that interests me most. I came out of the dressing room and I knew I had found the dress. The moms cried, I cried, Vanessa brought us champagne and we celebrated!! We cancelled all our other appointments and headed back to the states early as I knew I had found the perfect dress.
One other funny story…Vanessa asked how high of a heel I planned on wearing. Knowing myself and how poorly I do in heels, I asked, “Can I wear flats?” She said, “Of course you can wear flats!” So we fitted the gown to the perfect length so I could wear flats the entire night. Best. Decision. Ever.”
Tell us about your day! Did you have a theme or style in mind?
“I would describe it as a mix of classic and fun. We had a church ceremony with so many special touches like an eight-person choir, a unity candle, and gorgeous flowers. Our reception was at the Niagara Falls Country Club where we had a single malt scotch tasting bar, lawn games, photo booth, and a fantastic DJ who kept the dancing going late into the night.”
What was your first dance song?
“Ashokan Farewell by folk musician Jay Ungar. It is most well known by its use in Ken Burns’s Civil War documentary. My husband loves the documentary and when I watched it with him, I thought it would be beautiful for a first dance.“
Describe your wedding day in 5 words or less:
“Best day of my life.”
Where did you go on your honeymoon?
“We went to Hawaii! It was a trip of a lifetime.”
Any advice for future brides/grooms?
“I have one good piece of practical advice for your reception that I received. As much as you can, stay with your partner the whole night. It sounds obvious, but it’s so easy to get separated by family, friends, etc. Walk around together, visit together, dance together, experience your whole day together. “
Danielle + Chris’s Niagara Falls Country Club Wedding Vendors
wedding dress: Lea-Ann Belter Hazel and Meryl veil via our flagship Toronto bridal boutique | photographer: Kaz Photography | venue: Niagara Falls Country Club, event manager, Jayne Anderson | wedding planner extraordinaire + moral support: bride’s mother | celebrant: Monsignor David LiPuma | florals: Maureen’s | desserts: Lewiston Village Bake Shoppe, Blue Table Chocolates | hair + makeup: All That Jazz Salon