Fanta and Darwin decided early on that they were not going to have a wedding planner. They had been together since high school after all. If anyone knew how to best express the nuances of their love, relationship, and personalities over the course of a wedding day, it was them. Fanta is African and Darwin is Haitian. Ending their once-in-a-lifetime event in a joyous celebration that united their cultural heritages was very important to the couple. Fanta looks back and says, “It was just a big party the whole night!” Here, she shares the details about their unforgettable, fun-filled reception.
Part 4: Reception
After a first round of toasts to the newlyweds during cocktail hour, Fanta and Darwin’s guests made their way to Stonebridge Country Club’s spacious ballroom. The classic pink and white theme continued into the elegant, naturally lit room beautifully. Table décor displayed a combination of high and low centerpieces featuring various roses, ranunculus, hydrangeas, stock, lisianthus, and astilbe complemented by jasmine vine, seeded eucalyptus, and Italian ruscus. Marked by a ‘Mr. & Mrs’ sign, a petal and candle decorated sweetheart table offered a cozy, romantic spot for the couple to finally sit down – but not for long.
If you’ve been reading along, you already know that Darwin is an expert of surprise, having pulled off one of the most epic NYC proposals to date. He made covert plans for this day as well. Fanta remembers, “Darwin was in a fraternity in college. He and his brothers choreographed an entire stroll, which they performed for me during the garter toss.” She continues, “He’s also really musical and plays the bass. He learned acoustic guitar for our wedding, just so he could play a song for me – ‘Love Is Not A Fight’ by Warren Barfield. Everyone was in tears!”
About halfway through the reception, the couple made a second entrance wearing traditional African garb. Keeping accessories to a minimum for her Act I, the bride pulled out all the stops for her second look. “We are kind of ‘extra’ when it comes to jewelry and I was basically draped in gold from my headpiece to my earrings, necklace and bracelets.”
Incorporating aspects of two different cultures into a wedding can be tricky as you want to be respectful and welcoming to everyone involved. Fanta says, “Our families really appreciated the transition. We tried to find a balance while honoring what is unique and beautiful about each culture. Our menu was specially created with favorite ethnic dishes from both sides.” In a day filled with everlasting memories, we asked Fanta if there were any that stuck out in particular. “There are so many… from the bridal party rehearsing our intro dances after a few glasses of mimosas followed by our exchange of gifts to my father walking me down the aisle, saying ‘I do’ to my phenomenal man, and the beautiful weather.” She finishes, “And seeing all of our friends and family dressed up in traditional outfits dancing to the beat of African drums is a moment that Darwin and I will cherish forever.”
Congratulations Fanta & Darwin! Thank you for sharing your Real BB Wedding Story with us!
Couple’s Vendor List
Venue: Stonebridge Country Club
Photographer: Belluci Films
Bride’s Dress: Martina Liana
Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Groom’s Tux: Garçon Couture
Groom’s Shoes: Aldo
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Colors
Groomsmen’s Tuxes: Men’s Warehouse
Makeup & Hair: Juicy Looks by Abby
Rings: James Allen
Invitations: Elegant Wedding Invites
Music: DJ Spynfo AKA Mr. Matrimony
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