A Flower-Filled Wedding in Victoria, Canada
Stacey and Justin
Stacey Anne Clark didn't expect to be gone for more than a few days when she left for a trip to Berlin. But that was before she met Justin Lafreniere. The pair had an instant connection and Stacey, who was working as a fashion designer in Los Angeles, even stayed an extra two weeks to spend time with Justin, who was working on a film project in the German metropolis. "After the extended vacation, I went back to L.A. to pack up my house, grabbed my dog, and moved right in with him in Berlin," says Stacey.
After more than three years of living together, the couple was watching the sun set on the steps of a Berlin museum one Sunday afternoon when Justin suddenly exclaimed, "'Let's get married! Let's go buy you a ring!' or something along those lines,” remembers Stacey. "I, of course, was in!"
The duo wed in the backyard of Stacey's childhood home in Victoria, British Columbia, amidst its beautiful garden. Stacey's mother, who had always wanted one of her daughters to get married at the house, even designed the garden with the help of Head Gardener so that the surroundings would complement the colors of the wedding gown. In fact, the stunning Valentino dress inspired the entire design of the event, including linens by Faire la Fête, a rental company launched by the bride and her mother after they couldn't find linens that they liked for the big day.
With views of a quiet bay on the Pacific Ocean behind them, Stacey and Justin tied the knot on August 13, 2016. Having lived in so many different places, the couple had 150 guests come in from Texas, Los Angeles, London, Berlin, and New York for the celebration. For two jet-setting people always on the move, their wedding was a relaxed, floral-filled day at home.
The Dress & Suit
Having worked in fashion, Stacey was knowledgeable about designers and especially admired the Valentino pre-fall 2015 collection, which included her soon-to-be wedding dress. "It was on my mood board from day one," she says of the hand-embroidered, beaded green gown that she paired with a sleek ponytail inspired by the design house’s runway show. Justin wore a custom Jack Victor tuxedo from Outlooks Menswear and a red boutonnière to complement the flowers and butterflies on Stacey's dress.
The bride wore light pink suede Prada platforms that she describes as "very '70s."
The First Look
The pair did their first look at a neighbor's house where Stacey and her wedding party had just gotten ready. "When Justin and I saw each other we totally lost it, so many happy tears!" she says. As for the groom, "I heard Wyatt shout from the balcony, 'Oh my god he's here!'" says Justin of walking up the neighbor's driveway for the first look. "My groomsmen and I waited beneath the balcony for a few seconds, and then there she was. She was radiant, and I was the luckiest man on earth."
The Bridal Party
The Bridal Bouquet
Stacey carried a bouquet by Clare Monica Day of roses and greenery, bound together with black silk ribbons.
The Flower Girl
The bride's 3-year-old niece, Eloise, wore an adorable Il Gufo dress as she did one big petal dump on her trip down the aisle. "She is hilarious and clever," says Stacey. "She knew the petals had to go on the ground and she found the most efficient way to take care of that!"
The Wedding Puppy
"Valcor is our pride and joy," says Stacey of the couple's dog who trotted down the aisle. "He comes everywhere with us and we're totally nuts for him."
The Aisle Adornments
"The flowers in the aisle, in the house, for the ceremony, and on the tables were all inspired by wildflowers," says the bride. "We wanted it to look like they were growing right out of everything." The couple's florist even grew many of the flowers for the event herself.
Upon arriving, guests were treated to pre-ceremony cocktails, like a French 75 made from crémant rosé and Blue Buck Beer. A friend of the couple's, harpist Julia Cunningham, played the traditional "Here Comes the Bride" as Stacey's father walked her down the aisle while Justin and his groomsmen had entered to her rendition of "November Rain" by Guns N' Roses. "His favorite!" says Stacey. "I let him have that one!"
Thanks to floral parasols that Stacey's mom had picked up, guests shielded themselves from the hot sun while watching the nuptials, which were officiated by a friend.
The Cocktail Hour
While the backyard was being flipped for the reception, everyone moved to the front of the house for champagne, cocktails, and appetizers. Guests hung around a greenery-covered bar, the brainchild of Roxanne Cave of Celebrate Events, while Daniel Lapp, another musician friend, played with his jazz band, Daniel Lapp Quartet. The Wandering Mollusk served fresh hand-shucked oysters.
Toque Catering's family-style feast included chimichurri marinated flank steak, cedar plank sablefish, and a cauliflower and summer pea rice pilaf. For those craving a late night snack, pizza ovens were set up in the courtyard! White linens and blue napkins set each table, along with modern flatware, mixed stemware, and specimen-like centerpieces.
In a nod to both Stacey's gown and the home's gardens, Clare Monica Day created these floral-and-butterfly-adorned centerpieces which included pink and orange coreopsis, red and orange Bishop's dahlias, chocolate cosmos, and scented geranium.
The Hanging Florals
Inspired by the work of artist Rebecca Louise Law, Clare Monica Day made suspended garlands of deconstructed flowers, grasses, and butterflies. They hung in clusters on the oak trees and the architectural trellis on the house.
Daniel Lapp Quartet played "La Vie en Rose" by Louis Armstrong on the violin for Stacey and Justin's first dance. Shortly afterwards, The Hairfarmers took over and played "Wildflowers" by Tom Petty for the bride's dance with her dad. "Everyone else ended up joining in halfway through," says Stacey. "It was a super special moment!"
The Sweet Treats
Patisserie Daniel created this bloom-adorned confection, a chiffon cake with boozy lemon curd, fresh raspberries, and buttercream frosting. Mini crème brûlées, lavender custard, profiteroles, rosemary truffles, and cookies sat at the base. Guests were also given chocolate truffles from Chocolat as favors.
The Floral Cake
Daniel, head chef at Patisserie Daniel, decorated the cake while guests were at the cocktail hour. "He literally just went around the yard picking flowers from the garden and placing them on it!" says Stacey. "We meant to keep the top but ended up eating it the next day with our friends and family, it was so delicious!"
A vintage car enthusiast, the bride's father lent the newlyweds a 1969 Mercedes SL for their exit. "It's the car I have always loved and one of the only ones he actually lets me drive!" says Stacey.
Photography, Robyn Penn of Maui Maka Photography
Event planning, Roxanne Cave of Celebrate Events
Catering, Nicholas Waters of Toque Catering
Stationery, Flourish by Colleen Winton
Cake, Patisserie Daniel
Bride's gown, Valentino
Hair, Calvyn Cass of Brush Salon
Makeup, Sarah Rose Artistry
Flower Girl dresses, Il Gufo
Menswear, Vera Wang
Chocolate truffles, Chocolat
Oyster bar, The Wandering Mollusk
Wedding bands, Francis Jewellers