This Couple Drew Design Inspiration from Mexican Tiles and Otomi Prints for Their Wedding Weekend in Punta Mita
Michele and Jack first crossed paths at a mutual friend's birthday brunch in the meatpacking district in New York City back in September of 2016. Fast forward to Easter weekend of 2019, when the couple planned a short getaway to Montauk, New York. Jack planned to pop the question during a walk along the beach, but since it was supposed to rain all weekend, he decided to propose shortly after they checked into their hotel. The couple then spent the rest of the weekend celebrating together.
They decided to invite 105 guests to Punta Mita, Mexico, for their destination wedding, which took place on March 14, 2020. Michele's family has owned a villa there for the last four decades, so it was an easy choice for the couple to invite loved ones to join them at their favorite vacation destination. They had a welcome party and rehearsal dinner before their seaside ceremony and outdoor reception at the St. Regis Hotel. A pink, blue, and white color palette guided their design choices and complemented the scenery.
Michele and Jack hired LouLou Baker to help them pull together wedding-day design details inspired by Otomi embroidery prints and blue tiles. They also worked with Talbot Ross as their wedding planner to make sure everything went off without a hitch. Planning the wedding from afar was a challenge, but Michele and her mom traveled to Punta Mita three times leading up to the big day to meet with vendors and secure the details. Read on to see how all the colorful details came together.
Invitations to Mexico
Michele and Jack chose a custom tri-fold invitation that incorporated design details seen on the wedding day like bougainvillea, palm leaves, Otomi prints, and a Mexican tile-inspired design. Their designer, LouLou Baker, printed a custom map of Punta Mita for the invitation suite, and incorporated the couple's custom crest but added sombreros to the seahorses for a fun touch.
A Warm Welcome
The couple hosted their laid back welcome party at Pacifico Beach Club for about 70 of their guests. "Since most of the guests had arrived either that day or the day before, we wanted it to be more low key so that the guests could rest up for the fun nights ahead!" Michele says. At the welcome party, Michele wore a high-neck Missoni dress and Valentino shoes.
Mingling in the Sand
The beach club was decorated with string lights and lanterns to create a cozy atmosphere after sundown. LouLou Baker designed a crest for the couple and featured it in the cocktail napkins for the welcome party and elsewhere on the wedding day.
Decked Out in Florals
At the rehearsal dinner, Michele wore a floral patterned Dolce & Gabbana dress paired with Jimmy Choo sandals, a Dior purse, and vintage gold coin earrings her grandfather made for her when she was a child. "My grandfather collects vintage gold coins and over the years he has gifted me, my mom, my aunts, and female cousins with different coin related gifts," she says. Jack wore white pants with a navy blazer paired with Stubbs & Wootton loafers.
This poolside event took place at Kupuri Beach Club, which has a more formal atmosphere than the welcome party location. "It has a totally different vibe than the other beach club and had a totally different view. We wanted to keep each night unique," the bride says. They invited all of their guests to the celebration, as so many people were traveling from afar for their big day.
Guests enjoyed passed hors d'oeuvres and an open bar upon arrival, with grilled food stations for dinner. Jack's mother insisted they have a steel drummer play at the rehearsal dinner, as Jack grew up vacationing in the Bahamas and wanted to bring a tropical vibe to the wedding weekend.
On the morning of the wedding, Michele—dressed in a sarong, which she wore to get ready—read a sweet note from her soon-to-be groom.
For the big day, Michele chose a wedding dress that made a statement. "You only get to wear a wedding gown once in your life so why not be extra?" she says. When she went to Saks to try on dresses with her mom and two bridesmaids, they happened to be hosting a Naeem Khan trunk show. "We were so lucky to have the head of Naeem Khan Bridal, Marco Catoretti there. Marco asked me what type of bride I wanted to be. romantic? Classic? None of the above? I wanted to be sassy!" Michele says. She selected the "Alaska" dress, with an ivory V-neck gown with long sleeves and intricate bead and sequin detailing.
Michele was fortunate enough to have Marco's help in selecting a Naeem Khan veil to pair with her wedding dress. She also wore crystal Gucci sandals and custom Stephanie Gottlieb earrings. The final touch was a bracelet that had her wedding date and the GPS coordinates of Punta Mita engraved in it—a gift from her maid of honor.
Michele's bridesmaids wore light pink silk gowns, an idea that Marco put on the table. "Since my dress was so busy, they needed to wear something more simple. I also imagined how pretty the light pink would look on the beach with the sunset," she says. The dresses by Michael LoSordo, La Collection, and Marques Almeida varied in style, but were cohesive in color and fabric. Each bridesmaid held a smaller version of Michele's bridal bouquet.
The First Look
Jack and Michele shared a first look at Casa Mita, a rustic building in Punta Mita. Although Michele was feeling relaxed after getting ready with her mom and wedding party, the nerves set in when she found out Jack's driver took him to the wrong location for their first look. "I was a little confused. After a 20 minute ride with the driver and a photographer, we arrived at the Casa Mita hotel to a very confused front desk receptionist," Jack says, "The driver took me to the wrong Casa Mita!" Although they were on a tight schedule, they managed to have a sentimental first look and a Champagne toast before taking photos and starting the ceremony.
The Scenic Ceremony
The ceremony took place in a lawn on the hotel's property overlooking the beach.
The Ceremony Florals
Bamboo chairs were set up on either side of the aisle, which was covered in rose petals in various shades of pink. Bougainvillea trees stood in the background with bright pink flowers that matched the petals.
The Ceremony Details
Michele felt some nerves before walking down the aisle, but was comforted by her father, who escorted her towards Jack.
Michele and Jack exchanged traditional vows underneath the bougainvillea trees. They incorporated some readings that they shared at their Catholic mass ceremony the month prior.
The Lasso Ceremony
Michele's grandfather and aunt had a custom lasso made for the couple to use during the lasso ceremony. "It was a really special touch of traditional Spanish heritage that we were able to incorporate into our wedding. The lasso came in a beautiful sterling silver engraved box that we will keep forever and pass down to our future children," the bride says.
The Mariachi Escort
As Michele and Jack reached the end of the aisle, they met a mariachi band that led them to the cocktail hour area.
The Cocktail Hour
The couple offered his and hers signature cocktails, including a paloma for the bride and a red sangria for the groom. The all-white bar featured a pink Otomi design. Passed appetizers including chicken and shrimp skewers, gazpacho, and blue corn quesadillas with squash blossoms were served. The couple was grateful to have their portraits out of the way so that they could spend time with guests during the cocktail hour.
Find My Match
Matchbooks emblazoned with their signature crest were also placed on the bar.
Love Is All Around Us
Heart-shaped lanterns were placed in the surrounding trees, lighting the way when the sun set.
The Escort Cards
The couple used small tequila bottles as their escort cards, with their custom crest etched onto the stoppers; each guest's name and table assignment were attached with a pink ribbon. The tables were named after restaurants that had special meaning to the couple, including the location of their first date, their favorite sushi spot, and a restaurant where they celebrated Michele's 30th birthday.
On the Table
Long rectangular tables were set up underneath a canopy of string lights come the dinner reception. Ivory chairs with woven bases allowed the custom pink and white linens to pop. Authentic Otomi linens made in Mexico were used as table runners; the couple also made the Otomi print seen on their invitations into tablecloths for some of the other stations.
The Centerpieces and Table Details
Low centerpieces in shades of pink and red were placed in white vessels and placed along the length of the tables. Small succulents and tea candles were scattered throughout.
The Place Settings
The place settings included plates that mimicked blue Mexican tiles, with a personalized menu that matched the invitation suite for each guest. LouLou Baker painted an "M" designed from flowers that were then hand-sewn onto the linen napkins. "LouLou also painted our monogram that was then hand-painted onto dinner plates for us. We will keep them forever!" Michele says. The bride's aunt also had custom Mexican glass-blown goblets made for them to use during the wedding.
Dinner began with a green salad with hearts of palm, tomato, corn, and cucumber with a citrus vinaigrette. The main dishes and sides were served family style. Guests enjoyed a "catch of the day dish," skirt steak with chimichurri sauce, Mexican street corn, grilled vegetables, and a variety of salsas and guacamole. Instead of a wedding cake, Michele and Jack opted for dessert stations. They had a churro cart, popsicle cart, a coffee bar, homemade gelato, and individual plates of dark chocolate cake with caramel and sea salt—the bride's favorite.
During dinner, Michele's dad gave a heartfelt speech with marriage advice, and the maid of honor and best man had the room in tears. "We keep rewatching our wedding video so we can hear the speeches over and over!" Michele says.
The duo's stylish guests dressed to suit the bright, tropical celebration.
Michele read about a band called Mala Rumba in magazines and decided to fly them in from Cabo to keep guests on their feet. During the event, Michele and Jack shared their first dance to Lady Gaga's "Always Remember Us This Way" from the movie A Star is Born. After the wedding, the duo enjoyed some time together as newlyweds in Lake Toxaway, North Carolina, due to the pandemic, but they're planning a honeymoon getaway to South Africa and the Maldives as soon as possible.