Thinking of marrying in the USA? Let this Florida wedding fill you with inspiration…


WHO: Emily & James

WHERE: Hawks Cay Resort, Duck Key

WHEN: November 2011

PHOTOS: Candice and Travis Cossel


The proposal

“I’d just got home from shopping with my Mom and Grandma, who were in New York visiting us for my Grandma’s birthday,” recalls Emily. “We were running late for our meal, and I was frantically trying to wrap presents and do my make-up all at the same time. I vaguely noticed that James had tidied up, and left roses, which I put down to him being sweet. Then, he took me completely by surprise getting down on one knee and asking me to marry him! I couldn’t believe he’d decided to do it then!” laughs Emily

The bride’s outfit

“Originally, I’d planned on designing my own wedding dress, because that’s what I do for a living,” explains Emily. “However, I went to my local boutique to see what was on offer and they just happened to be having a Vera Wang trunk show. When I tried on my gown and saw how beautifully it fitted and had been made, I knew I couldn’t let it go!”

We had breakfast overlooking the water watching dolphins play…

The groom’s outfit

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James and his groomsmen wore charcoal-grey suits from Calvin Klein. “I chose to buy all the outfits meaning they all had a suit to keep and wear again for other occasions,” explains James

The bridesmaids

“I picked four of my closest girls that I knew would be there not only on my big day, but as part of my life forever,” remembers Emily. “I found their dresses in a magazine, and instantly fell in love with the super-bright, crazy, coral colour!” The gowns were by

The ceremony

“We had two readings: a traditional extract of Corinthians 1, read by my godfather and In Love Made Visible by Mary Swenson, which was read by James’ cousin, Nate,” says Emily

The reception

The couple’s ceremony and reception took place all at the same venue, with the reception party held in the Terrace Room. The day after the wedding, Emily and James invited their guests to an informal breakfast out on the Dolphin Deck, where everyone could eat overlooking the water, and watch the dolphins play!

For favours, The guys had dolphin-shaped bottle openers and girls had shell-shaped wine corks

The cake

Was made by Key West Cakes and included a bird cake topper because the couple own two pet birds