From the frosé machine, to the tie-dye gowns the bridesmaids wore, to the beachside venue — Chelsea + James’ wedding was an endless array of tropical fun! Taking place at the Caribbean Resort in Islamorada, right on the water in the Florida Keys, their wedding was meant to be a relaxing tropical getaway for all the attendees. With a million palm trees, open beach next door, and a super fun color palette, what more could you want?
Chelsea shares a bit about the inspiration for their day: It was so important to us for our day to be first and foremost, fun! And with as little stress as possible. We also loved the idea of a semi-destination wedding (the Keys are a close 2 hours from where we live in South Florida), since James’ family is from England and so many would have to travel anyways, we wanted to make it a weekend, rather than just a day event. That was a major play in having everything in one location too… from getting ready, to staying on property that night.
Let’s proceed to the party + take a peek at all the photos captured by Jenna Bechtholt Photography!
How adorable are all the ladies as they’re getting ready?! You can find these tropical pajamas at The Poppy Shop.
The Vows on the Beach
Hello, beach front property!!
Man, there are so many! The first looks with my dad and with James were top 3 for sure…aside from that, our vows! I’m so glad we wrote our own, such a special moment sharing those in front of everyone.
My aunt Heather spending 2 hours ironing my dress (lots of layers) because I totally forgot to do it! My Uncle marrying us, wearing his cute little bowtie.
Processional: Wedding Party: This Must Be The Place by The Lumineers; Bride: Loving Wings by Dave Matthews
Recessional: You Make My Dreams by Daryl Hall and John Oates
First Dance: First Try by Johnnyswim
The Wedding Party
Aren’t these tie-dye dresses AMAZING?! Want to recreate this look? We’ve found a few of our faves below:
I spy the most gorgeous bridal hair, done by Jordan Pomeroy.
The Tropical Reception
No WAY to this frosé machine!! C+J told us they actually served this delicious drink right before the ceremony, to set the mood. We’re so on board with that! Want to make your own frosé? Here’s our DIY recipe!
The Altarnative played off of the beach landscape and brought in bright + bold pops for all the florals.
Keep it true to you! Don’t get caught up in all the wedding things. There’s no golden rule of weddings that says you HAVE to do anything…it’s your day! If you don’t want to do cake cutting, don’t. We skipped some of the traditional stuff, like the garter and bouquet toss because we didn’t want to interrupt the party… and I’m so glad we did. In terms of who you include in your wedding party, I had 9 girls and 1 bridesdude, my husband had 4 groomsmen - and I had 3 maids of honor…DO YOU! For James, he had a few select people he wanted to include and I just wanted all my close peeps with me and didn’t care about the numbers matching up.
As far as spending goes - it can get crazy, really fast. Top investments for us were venue, photography and videography, with florals and our truck bar not far behind. Things that attribute to the experience and documenting everything were more important to us than little things like custom cocktail napkins, so we kept that in mind while budgeting! Also, if you’re trying to keep the night continuous without having a lot of stop and go, try to plan your first dance and parent dances for right after the introduction, then speeches, that way it’s just a big dance party to end the night!
Major YUM to these individual cakes + pies!
Doesn’t this look like a blast?! Who else wants to say their vows + party on into the night, beachside? Let us know where you’re thinking in the comments below!
To get a more in-depth look at this gorgeous wedding, take a peek at this clip from Wild Light Film:
photography: Jenna Bechtholt Photography // venue name: The Caribbean Resort, Islamorada, Florida, USA // florals: The Altarnative // wedding dress: Carol Hannah // wedding dress boutique: The Bridal Project // hair stylist: Jordan Pomeroy // videography: Wild Light Film // paper goods: Lauren Quesada