After 7 and a half years of dating, GC and I tied the knot on October 11th, 2014. The weather was gorgeous: it was sunny, clear and crisp. It was the perfect fall day. Our ceremony took place in the gardens at the Columbus Center, an Italian community center close to our house that GC took various lessons and classes at as a child.
I walked down the aisle with both of my parents to “We’re Going to Be Friends” by the White Stripes, a song that encapsulates our relationship as more than just boyfriend and girlfriend but as best friends and falling in love as kids in university.
Two of my sisters did readings. Theresa read a quote from George Eliot’s Adam Bede:
What greater thing is there for two human souls, than to feel that they are joined for life–to strengthen each other in all labor, to rest on each other in all sorrow, to minister to each other in all pain, to be one with each other in silent unspeakable memories at the moment of the last parting?
Amelia read William Shakespeare’s Love Sonnet CXVI:
Let me not to the marriage of true minds
Admit impediments. Love is not love
Which alters when it alteration finds,
Or bends with the remover to remove:
O no; it is an ever-fixed mark,
That looks on tempests, and is never shaken;
It is the star to every wandering bark,
Whose worth’s unknown, although his height be taken.
Love’s not Time’s fool, though rosy lips and cheeks
Within his bending sickle’s compass come;
Love alters not with his brief hours and weeks,
But bears it out even to the edge of doom.
If this be error and upon me proved,
I never writ, nor no man ever loved.
Once we were officially married, we danced out of our ceremony to “Shout” by the Isley Brothers. This is legitimately one of my favourite songs and it was the perfect way to play it twice at our wedding.
As we took photos our guest enjoyed their cocktail hour in the Joseph. D. Carrier Art Gallery which is inside the Columbus Center. We served two signature cocktails: the Bride (a gin-based cocktail called the Cool Cucumber) and the Groom (a whisky-based cocktail called the Whisky Apple). We served 6 different types of appetizers: rare beef with gorgonzola on garlic crostini, melon wrapped with prosciutto, chive blini topped with herbed cream cheese and smoked salmon, breaded shrimp cocktail, mini pizzette and aranicini with marinara sauce.
The space is simple and elegant and we decorated it that way for our reception. Our centerpieces were minimal: a collection of candles in glass votives to reflect off the marble throughout the evening. We had two giant urns filled with florals and greenery that were used during the ceremony flanking the head table and the bouquets held by the girls were in vases on the head table. Our tables were named after our favourite Toronto neighbourhoods and our favours were pots of honey with a quote by Victor Hugo.
The food was the most important part of our wedding for me. It’s beautiful to spend money and effort on flowers, favours and personal touches but people will forget these things and remember your food. And a year later, people still talk to me about the food at our wedding. It was served French-style so there is no beautifully constructed plated dishes but more importantly, our guests could eat as much or as little as they wanted. We started with a potato leek soup, followed by a pasta course of penne rigate with pancetta in vodka tomato cream sauce and a wild mushroom risotto. The entrée was roasted beef tenderloin with a cognac sauce and sautéed chicken breast with a picatta lemon sauce served with green and yellow beans, baby carrots and herb roasted mini red potatoes. Dessert was my favourite Italian dessert, tiramisu. Throughout the evening we had a candy table available to our guests (which I gushed about here) and later in the evening we had a dessert buffet filled with fresh fruit, Portuguese custard tarts, cannoli and our cake. I have always said that I was more excited about my wedding cake than my wedding dress. Cake is something I can dream and fantasize about, a dress I just can’t. Our wedding cake was made by Christina at Truffle Cake & Pastry and it was perfection. She captured the simple elegance we were looking for and it tasted amazing. We went with a layer of chocolate on chocolate and a layer of lemon cake with raspberry filling.
We had kept the top tier of our cake to enjoy in the traditional fashion on our first anniversary. When we were checking out of the hotel the next day and asking for our cake out of the hotel’s fridge they said they had given it to my mom. Right away I knew that my cake was lost. My mom didn’t know we had kept our cake there and it’s not my mom’s style to presume to be “helpful” like that. With our anniversary coming up this weekend, GC has surprised me by getting in touch with Christina to make us a smaller version of our cake for us to enjoy celebrating 365 days of perfection.
We loved our wedding and there is nothing we would change. It was small, intimate and we were surrounded by all the people we love. It was a true representation of us as couple from the nod to Toronto, the focus on food and drink and the unique songs choices ranging from Indie to old school R&B and rock. I will always love our wedding day and I look forward to years of being married to my best friend.
Photography courtesy of Scarlet O’Neill.
Ceremony and reception location: Columbus Center
Bridal gown: Essense of Australia from The Gown
Groom’s Suit: Calvin Klein from The Bay
Rings: Jon Pollack from Made You Look Jewellery
Cake: Truffle Cake & Pastry
Caterer: Ristorante Boccaccio
Music: Sound Advice Entertainment
Hair: Sarah Sabine
Makeup: Sara Law
Florist: Blush and Bloom
Stationery: Shine Wedding Invitations