Weddings 2009: A review

I love my job, no really I do, there is nothing more satisfying than seeing two people who really love each other finally get to say “I do” surrounded by their family and friends and this year I’ve helped over 15 couples have their dream wedding in Tuscany. As winter draws in and those long hot summer days are just a hazy memory it’s time to reflect on the past year and also start planning the new weddings for next year. Weddings take time to plan and although Italy is much more laid back you still need time to pull together all the elements to make sure the day goes according to plan and everyone is where there should be including the bride and groom.

During the planning process I get to know the couples really well and my work also means I get to meet lots of interesting people from all over the world, most of whom become friends and stay in touch to keep me up to date on what’s going on in their lives post wedding. This year we’ve had new arrivals, Martha, George and Lorenzo and three more due to be born later this year and early next year.

The wedding season started late for me this year and finished late too, probably just as well as summer here started late too.

Mostly the weather was kind, sadly Claire and Stephen’s wedding in late August which should have been nice and sunny, well it was in the morning put me into over-ride when the heavens opened just as Claire got into church and didn’t stop for hours, by which time it was impossible to have the wedding dinner under the fabulous gazebos in the garden, beautifully decorated with fairy lights and lanterns suddenly became a soogy field….where wellies would have been more appropriate than Jimmy choes! Alll was not lost with the help of those strong Irish boys we transformed a room into a beautiful candle lit dining room which left Claire speechless and very very happy.

June saw me sourcing heather for a Scottish English wedding, as you can imagine it’s far too hot for heather here in June so I contacted a nursery in Scotland who very kindly sent me some heathers through the post, not sure if that’s completely legal with importation laws but they got through and I managed to keep them alive long enough for the florists to make buttionieres for the wedding party. June also saw us building a chuppa from scratch for Nick and Anna which was great fun and had been wonderfully researched using Blue Peter models before the real thing went up and at the end of June another Scottish wedding this time with a Scottish Piper piping the groom and guests down to Piazza del Campo which gave me goose bumps and made the guests feel really special as people stopped to look at them, I love the fact that in Italy the people will clap, shout out compliments and generally enjoy a wedding party especially seeing the women in big hats and fasinators…..

July brought warmer weather and a wonderful bespoke wedding for Alina and Bill which definitely got our creative juices flowing, closely followed by Casey & Phil who brought 90 of their friends over to help them celebrate their wedding in Castellina in Chianti, Casey’s mum Jackie had worked really hard on the decorations bringing suitcases of decs with her so working with her was a real joy and sipping white wine and making confetti (sugared alomnds) was fun as was decorating the tables and seeing the final results of it all coming together. Casey arrived with her Dad in his Austin Healey and then drove back with Phil to the venue, Andrea the photographer and I had trouble finding them on the way back for the scheduled photo stop, when we finally caught up with them they were tucking into a nice cold glass of wine before being taken off into the vineyard for some great shots…. After all the partying I whizzed off the following day to do a wedding for a couple in Radda in Chianti.

August was still very hot and John and Lorraine got married in Certaldo, a great day with a vintage car that somehow managed to get to Certaldo just as the guest and the groom did, not quite sure how that happened as he left after us but we managed to get John into the Palazzo before Lorraine arrived. All the guests took the funicula up to Certaldo Alto, trying to get 25 people to stamp their tickets and get through the turnstile was a challenge but we did it and got everyone up before the bride arrived… Lorraine chose some wonderful flowers and floral arrangements and all the guests had buttonholes and corsages a great time was had by all.

September saw Sheila and David tie the knot in Lucca surrounded by the family and me acting as chauffeur to get Sheila to the town hall and an explosion of confetti bombs when they got back to the villa. Brian and Mandy decided to have a secret wedding in Siena where they met their witnesses just before the wedding and were friends by the time we’d toasted their wedding with some prosecco in the piazza.

October brought us more good weather and wonderful light for the photos, Paige and Jason came from Canada to get married in Castellina in Chianti we lit candles and decorated the chairs in the town hall to make it more romantic with floral decs on the chairs, followed by drinks in the town square and dinner in a local restaurant. Then Zoe and John arrived from Wales who chose a wonderful villa in Giaole in Chianti as their base and Siena as the venue for the wedding. Photos in the vineyard and a personal chef completed the day. The last wedding of the year was Chris and Renee from Australia who decided to have a bespoke wedding with a few close friends amongst the olive trees in a magnificent agriturismo close to Siena a perfect day to end a perfect season.

So what am I doing now in the closed season, sourcing new venues and checking on existing ones, working on weddings for next year, hanging out with the florists, photographer and generally having a great time….living in Tuscany.

Please check out the photos of weddings from this year and previous years to give you and idea of the work that the team does to make each wedding special…. more on the various people in the team to follow in subsequent blogs!!! I may just get the hang of this!