All three days of this wedding took place in an incredible Renaissance villa right outside of Florence. From the beginning the couple knew the exact look and feel that they wanted for their wedding and this villa suited their tastes perfectly.
The Renaissance villa belonged to Florentine nobility 500 years ago. Aside from large and opulent rooms, it was decorated chock full of beautiful antiques. The bride wanted the flowers and the decoration of the wedding to have a “Dutch still life” quality about it. She also loved the blue and white Chinoiserie vases that are so prevalent in Europe. Fortunately the villa already provided many items that were just perfect and to those we added vases and objects acquired at flea markets and antique stores in Italy.
We used lots of porcelain and the bride gave porcelain printed dressing gowns to each of the bridesmaids to wear as they were getting their hair and make-up done together in the master suite. Every detail from the bride’s purse, dress, bouquet, earrings, flowers and vases and decorative objects had an antique quality about. Whether Renaissance, Victorian, Dutch or European Chinoiserie everything came together beautifully.
The ceremony was a combined Catholic and Jewish ceremony which is extremely rare in Italy. The groom is Catholic and the bride is Jewish and their two faiths united in one ceremony that both families could enjoy. The chuppah and aisle were inspired by a scene from Twilight and the key was abundant, flowing and utterly romantic.
The villa is in the hills outside of Florence and in fact through the clearing in the trees of the estate you can see the imposing dome of the Florence Duomo. The rest of the land around the villa is full of vines as the Villa is an important producer of Chianti and Tuscan wines.
Very much in the style of a Dutch still life painting, these assorted vases and variegated roses and multi colored flowers set the mood for the evening. Porcelain boxes served as vases with flowers peeking out. Vintage books here and there gave the feeling of a home, of a personal collection of items and interests.
Lauren and Gino are a lovely, young couple from Pennsylvania. They met in law school and were, in fact, both studying for the bar exam while we were planning the wedding. They came over to Italy for vacation and to scout locations for their wedding. They originally thought that they wanted to be married in Rome and had seen a castle on my website that looked like the perfect location for how they envisioned their wedding. We also visited several villas that I had suggested in Tuscany so that they could get a feeling for what a Tuscan wedding would feel like, as well. They loved all the locations that we looked at and it was not an easy decision but this villa in Tuscany just felt right. And what an incredible backdrop it was to three days of events, tours, dinners and the wedding celebration.
The day of arrival saw a lazy afternoon as everyone trickled into the villa from around the globe. In the evening the groom’s parents hosted a welcome bbq dinner featuring a variety of Tuscan salads, salumi, cheese and bbq meats. And for dessert was everyone’s favorite, gelato. We brought in a vintage cart with six organic flavors of gelato chosen by the couple. An Italian folk duo serenaded the guests and got them to sing along.
The second day was the wedding day and you can see the photos above. The weather couldn’t have been more obliging as it was a warm and sunny late September day. All the events including the ceremony took place on site at the villa which made for a relaxing and comfortable celebration for all.
The day after the wedding was dedicated to lounging, touring and relaxing. Guests headed off in all directions on a series of half day tours that had been set up according to their interests. The evening brought everyone back together again for the farewell pasta dinner. It was a delicious and fitting end to what had been three glorious days of fun and celebration that no one will forget any time soon.