A Parisian Couple's Two Chic Weddings in France
AmĂ©lie Reymond and Laurent Fiat first met in February 2010 at a friends' party in Paris, but only by a stroke of a fate. "We both should not have been there and finally we both decided to go," AmĂ©lie says. "It was love at first sight!" After four years of dating, Laurent popped the question during a romantic weekend getaway in Auvergne, where the pair stayed in a small rental house through the bride's company, Casalino Homes, with no electricity, meaning the entire weekend (and his romantic proposal!) was bathed in light from the fireplace and tons of candles. "It was our first night there and we had a beautiful view of nature as he asked me to become his wife."
Like most well-heeled French couples, the pair decided to have two wedding ceremonies: one civil, the only kind recognized by the state, and one more personal and often religious. They kicked things off with an ultra-chic courthouse ceremony in Paris followed by a luncheon at the groom's art gallery, Ă‰lĂ©phant Paname in January of 2015 and then celebrated again on August 1, 2015, at the groom's family home in a small village in Provence. While their two celebrations were totally different, we can't get enough of either of them, and lucky for us, photographers Laurine Paumard and Sylvie Gil were on hand at each party.
Read on to see all the details of their two incredible partiesâ€”eight months apart!
AmĂ©lie and Laurent made it official with a civil ceremony at the courthouse in Paris's 1st arrondissement, surrounded by friends and family.
The bride, then seven-months pregnant, stunned in her chic knee-length white dress, trench coat, and hat.
Guests gathered outside the courthouse to shower the newlyweds with flower petals as they made their grand exit. Then, everyone walked through the Tuileries to a wedding luncheon at the groom's art gallery, a restored Napoleon III-era building which he transformed into a gallery space and dance studios.
Inside, the grand architecture of the space needed little in the way of additional dĂ©cor, but the bride and groom did add a trailing pink curtain of flowers to a main doorway for a touch of romance, a detail AmĂ©lie says she'd been dreaming of for a long time. Lunch was served beneath the gallery's intricate dome, so long tables were decorated with simple arrangements of single rose stems in bud vases.
"When we entered, everyone stood up and clapped for us," says AmĂ©lie. "I was very emotional. I cried a littleâ€”but I blame that on being pregnant at the time."
Their second celebration came eight months later, on August 1, 2015, when 65 guests joined AmĂ©lie, Laurent, and their young son in the French countryside. "We wanted to celebrate again in the middle of summer when everyone is tan, beautiful, and happy," the bride says. "The property belongs to my husband's family and we love spending weekends and holidays there. The space is just perfect for a wedding."
The bride turned to designer Celestina Agostino for her silk wedding dress. "We got married four months after I gave birth to our son, so the objective was that my husband marries the sexy woman and not the mom," AmĂ©lie says. To say she stunned in the Carolyn Bessette-inspired style would be an understatement!
AmĂ©lie wanted a bouquet that felt very provincial, containing a mix of olive leaves and white flowers. "I asked for dahlias of peonies because both are my favorites, but they weren't in season," she says. "Our florist used a white zinnia with the same kind of shape instead."
It was important to the bride that her best friends stood with her on her wedding day, not what they were wearing, so AmĂ©lie asked each of her four attendants to arrive in any dress they likedâ€”it was just coincidence that two of her gals rocked similar-looking styles! To unify their look, the bride gave each of her 'maids a white flower crown in lieu of a bouquet.
The couple's ceremony took place at 5 p.m. inside the chapel on the Fiat family's property. In addition to sharing vows they wrote themselves, AmĂ©lie and Laurent asked their bridesmaids and groomsmen to recite special readings.
As they left the chapel, friends and family once again showered the bride and groom with flower petals, this time in shades of blush and white.
"It was really great to have our son there with us, even if he's still a baby," the bride says. She, Laurent, and their youngster were able to pause for beautiful pictures around the property before heading to the festivities. "He was surprisingly well behaved!"
Musicians led the couple and their guests to cocktail hour, which was to be held outdoors, but a rainstorm forced everyone beneath a tent the couple had brought in for the children in attendance. "It hadn't rained in over two months in the South of France!" AmĂ©lie says. "It was very funny, we were all cloistered under the tent where we had champagne and waited for the rain to pass."
Although the bulk of the party had to be moved beneath the tent or otherwise shielded with oversized umbrellas, the couple's photographer was able to snap photos of the gorgeous dĂ©cor before clouds rolled in. Tables were arranged around a pond filled with lilies and floating lanterns, each topped with natural-hued linens and low arrangements of peonies, garden roses, greenery, and herbs.
Each place setting featured a gold-rimmed charger and natural linen napkin. For dinner, everyone dined on lobster with tomatoes, mozzarella, and basil, and chicken with chiffon potato and summer truffle. "All the fruits, vegetables, eggs, olive oil, and wine came directly from the property as it's a beautiful vineyard with a fantastic kitchen garden," AmĂ©lie says of the local fare.
Because of the storm, dinner started later than expected as the outdoor kitchen was near impossible to cook in during the rain. "Once everyone finally got to the tables, we started dancing and eating all at the same time," the bride says. "The ambiance was electric. It was just perfect."
Guests danced to a great band until 2 a.m. when Philippe Parisot, a favorite DJ from St. Tropez and Ibiza, took over.
Everyone danced until the morning, finally calling it a night (or day!) at 7 a.m. "The part was amazing, and I really think it was because of the rain," says AmĂ©lie.