When music mogul Antonio "L.A." Reid decided to propose to his girlfriend, Erica Holton, he chose the stunning scenery of Italy's Isle of Capri. So when the pair was planning their wedding, they decided to return to the enchanting spot—with Colin in tow to head up the three-day affair.
Using Italy as his inspiration, Colin chose white and coral as the wedding colors and featured an Italian mountain on the invitations.
The first day of the celebration was a welcome day for friends and family. The dinner was set inside a lemon grove, with tables, chair cushions and even the waiters dressed in the festive citrus color. The next day, the ceremony took place at the Capri Palace Hotel at sunset.
As Erica walked down the aisle in a Vera Wang gown, an Italian band played. Under a canopy of roses, the couple said "I do"—and 20 pounds of rose petals fell from the sky. "Colin was the great conductor," Antonio says. "He put together a masterpiece."
Although Antonio told Colin to spare no expense, Colin says the most meaningful touches of the wedding cost little to nothing. "As the Mediterranean sun was setting, we had them light a unity candle, and the unity candle was passed [to every guest]," Colin says. "When they made their vows to one another, it was done in the candlelight, and the spiritual connective energy of everything today [brought] all the family and friends together."
Because Antonio and Erica were married far from home, Colin made sure each guest received a welcome bag. In everyone's hotel room was a monogrammed beach bag filled with mementoes from the region—music, a bottle of Limoncello, a fragrant candle and a handwritten note from Erica.
In 2004, thousands of couples wrote to The Oprah Show in hopes of winning a once-in-a-lifetime fantasy wedding. Sharon and El stole everyone's heart and won a fairy-tale wedding planned by Colin.
With six months to plan the wedding, Colin was ready to dive into the details with the couple. Their first stop? Choosing the tables. After three gorgeous choices, Sharon and El decided on the table style that Colin titled "Autumnal Secret Garden."
Willow branch centerpieces were adorned with orchid blossoms that were flown in from Amsterdam by Mark's Garden. Coordinating menu cards and place cards, created by Ellen Weldon Designs, sat beside each place setting.
As a magnificent string quartet serenaded the honored guests, the breathtaking stage was set for this ultimate celebration of love. Sharon's gorgeous bridesmaids, who wore custom Vera Wang dresses, were escorted by groomsmen in elegant Zegna tuxedos. As an emotional El looked on, his bride, Sharon, made her grand entrance on the arm of her brother.
Sharon and El incorporated different cultural elements to really make the ceremony their own. First, they cleansed their hands with orchid water as a symbol of purification. Next the couple honored the memory of their departed loved ones by ringing a bell.
And after exchanging their vows and rings, Sharon and El joined their lives together in a cultural tradition hundreds of years old—jumping the broom!
After they said "I do," it was time for the newlyweds to join their friends and family in the extravagant dinner tent Colin and his team designed!
The atmosphere was exquisite. Colin's elegant, candlelit enchanted garden sparkled with romance as the couple's family and friends welcomed the newlyweds. After Colin himself introduced the couple, the fairytale celebration began with a fabulous feast. Fifteen chefs spent a week preparing this once-in-a-lifetime four-course banquet. The final course included custom-created chocolate truffles and signature beignets by Vosges Haut-Chocolat.
Later, El and Sharon made the ceremonial slice into their breathtaking cake, created by Sam Godfrey. Truly the perfect end to a perfect wedding!
Colin urges every couple to incorporate meaningful and inexpensive personal touches into their wedding. One way is to embrace the cultures of both families by integrating special recipes or items of significance.
If you dream of a destination wedding, Colin suggests sticking closer to home, like going to a country bed and breakfast for the big event. "You don't have to go miles away," Colin says. "It's 72 hours of jam-packed love, ceremony and fabulousness."
Weddings can sometimes become bittersweet if loved ones have passed away. To remember those there in spirit, Colin suggests ringing a bell for each of the deceased. "So you bring in the presence of those who have passed on," he says.
Your guests can also create a gift that will keep giving. Colin suggests giving every guest a yard of ribbon and a marker, and asking them to write their wishes for the bride and groom. "Take all those and tie them above the arbor so they get married under the collective energy of their friends," Colin says. "Then you roll them up and you give them to the bride and groom. And when they hit a rocky road, they can always go back and look at the loves and wishes of their family and friends."
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