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T H E #1 M U LT I C U LT U R A L W E D D I N G M A G A Z I N E T H E #1 M U LT I C U LT U R A L W E D D I N G M A G A Z I N E

FALL EDITION 2018

Bride

THE THE FASHION FASHION ISSUE ISSUE

featuring

YEMI OSUNKOYA

AN D R E A PITTER

NNEKA ALEXANDER

J E AN-R AL P H THURIN

+ AN ICONIC TRIBUTE TO AMSALE


325+ 150+ pages of pages of

the BEST ideas to the BEST ideas to personalize your personalize your wedding wedding

"In a world where it is easy to get lost while following trends, "In a world where it is easy to get lost it is important to understand while following trends, your own unique gifting and pursue it relentlessly, it is important to understand your own unique gifting even if you do so alone." and pursue it relentlessly, - NNEKA ALEXANDER. even if you do so alone." - NNEKA ALEXANDER


A loving tribute to Amsale Aberra... May your designs continue to inspire & delight, and may your contributions to art and fashion continue to change the lives of so many.


PHOTOGRAPHS by DAJUAN JONES of IN HIS IMAGE PHOTOGRAPHY

Pictured here: A101, the first dress in Amsale’s first collection which debuted in 1990. Full tribute on page 10.


welcome

The name MunaLuchi holds a special place in our hearts. It is the combination of two African names which when fused together mean, "Beautiful Work of God"... Perfectly describing our brides... The Munaluchi bride is bold, beautiful, worldly... She is witty, vibrant and free. She loves the finer things in life, and is not afraid to go after what she wants. She exudes style and grace and is determined to look her very best not just on her wedding day but every day. She yearns to embrace her culture and seeks inspiration that speaks to her. She comes in all sizes and shades. Simply put, she is beautiful no matter what skin she's in. Our mission is to promote positive images of women of color...because we believe positive imagery is the threshold for confidence...and confidence inspires self love. We aspire to inspire...


CO N T E N T S

Photos by Elizabeth M

A Royal Estate of Affairs Celebrating the art of entertaining since 1919

Weddings & Celebrations A Castle to Call Your Own with Just One Wedding a Day 32 Guestrooms & Suites 路 Fine Dining 路 Golf & Tennis On the Gold Coast of Long Island between New York City and The Hamptons 135 West Gate Drive 路 Huntington NY 11743 路 631-659-1400 SUMMER.2018 | 6 www.oheka.com


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he was the f irst designer that responded to my requests to attend her fashion show during Bridal Fashion Week. That was 2010. MunaLuchi was new on the wedding industry scene and still had a long way to go to prove relevancy. I had just left my full time job at a Diagnostic company in NJ and was going full force with MunaLuchi. Amsale was the f irst to reply and provide access. In an industry where our magazine was the new niche publication on the block stirring up bridal, and diversity was barely considered, being able to attend a bridal fashion show was a huge deal for us. And to top it off, the show of the only mainstream wedding gown designer of color. We didn't take the experience lightly and developed an amazing relationship with the Amsale team many years after that f irst experience.

photo: teshorn jackson

When I learned of the news that Amsale had passed, I froze. She was such a hard worker, a kind spirit, a beautiful soul. How could she be gone so soon? What would become of the iconic Amsale brand she spent decades cultivating? How could we honor her legacy? It was from those questions that we decided to produce a fashion editorial in honor of Amsale. Not just to showcase some of our favorite Amsale designs, but to interview and photograph prominent black designers that were inspired by her. The editorial features 4 black wedding gown designers that are making their own waves in bridal fashion. In the tribute, we got a chance to chat with them about their start in the wedding industry, how Amsale has inspired their careers, and what makes them a powerhouse in bridal fashion. I'm extremely proud of the team we put together to produce this iconic shoot. From makeup, to hair, to accessories and photography, an all-star team of Coterie members worked tirelessly to achieve these results. In this issue, you'll still f ind your regular dose of wedding magic, with weddings from as far as South Africa and inspiration shoots inspired by black artists. Enjoy the Fall 2018 issue, and if it inspires you, share it with your friends. For more inspiration and to connect with more wedding vendors, visit our website at www.munaluchibridal.com.

Jacqueline Nwobu CEO/EDITOR-IN-CHIEF MUNALUCHI BRIDE MAGAZINE EDITOR@MUNALUCHIBRIDAL.COM

FALL 2018

OUR 1ST FOLD OUT COVER!

CEO/EDITOR-IN-CHIEF

COVER CREDITS:

J acqueline Nwobu PRESIDENT

Photography by Dajuan Jones, lead photographer for In His Image

Chike Nwobu

Photography

DIRECTOR OF MARKETING + SALES

Cinematography: Yamean Studios

Nicole McKenzie ASSOCIATE EDITOR

Samuel Naumick MARKETING ASSISTANT

Mylinh Truong

MARKETING/SALES INTERN

Photography Asst: Nana Annan Fashion Styling: James R. Sanders Makeup: Juicy Looks by Abby and Brides by Melanie B. Hair: Glamour by Shaniqua and Hair by Sadiku Headpieces: Headpiece Heaven

Janelle Ntim

The team at Munaluchi Bridal Magazine wishes to extend their thanks to all of the wedding professionals who gracefully shared their expertise and shared with us their works of art. All opinions expressed by the professionals interviewed are their own and other professionals in their field may have differing opinions. While Munaluchi Bridal Magazine aims to deliver accurate expert advice, no responsibility can be taken for the opinions of others. Munaluchi Bridal Magazine does not make any representation of the quality of any products, services, information, or material represented in this magazine. We reserve the right to refuse advertising. All advertisements are accepted and published on the representation that the advertiser is properly authorized to publish the entire contents and subject matter thereof. All photography not specifically credited to a photographer are courtesy of the respective company and used with their permission.


12

CO N T E N T S

C ov er Story 12

A T R I B U T E TO A M S A L E

16

D E S I G N S TA R E D I TO R I A L

En g ag e m en ts 42

DEANNA + QUINCY

64

CHANDREA + DEVIN

68

B R I T TA N Y + D E M E T R I E

72

C H A R L Y E + S TA N L E Y

78

ZAHNA + DERRICK

82

R U H A M A + B I N YA M

R e a l We d d ings

In spi r ation 36 86

K E S H E X P E R I E N C E C H I C AG O

48

CINDY + GLEN

Cancun, Mexico

INSPIRED BY CHINOISERIE 5 4

OLUFUNKE + BABAJIDE

122 I N S P I R E D B Y K E H I N D E W I L E Y

Paris France

130 G R E E N A N D I V O R Y G L A M O U R

60

PA R I S + V E R N O N

Philadelphia, PA

98

N AT H A L I E + J E S S I E

Ipswich, Massachusetts

102

J E S S I C A + R A N DO L P H

Baltimore, Maryland

134

U L T R A V I O L E T I N S P I R AT I O N

140 R W E V E N T S S H O WC A S E

140

1 0 8 VA L E R I E + D E V O N

Houston, TX

1 1 2

RIA + KEVOL

Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands

1 1 6

S H E L TO N + L E N N A R D

Houston, TX

12 6 TO R I + O L U

Brooklyn, NY

150

RAHIEL + GIDEON

Johannesburg, South Africa

1 5 6 A N I T H A + M A R V I N

Discovery Bay, Jamaica


A

Pictured here: Amsale Aberra To learn more about Amsale, visit www.amsale.com

Quiet Impact

PHOTOGRAPHED BY Dajuan Jones, lead photographer with In His Image Photography FASHION STYLING BY James R. Sanders

Understated elegance.

It's the perfect way to describe an Amsale creation. Since her entrance into the bridal fashion world, the designer has left quite an impact on the wedding industry. In this tribute, four gown designers share how Amsale has paved the way for them, and the legacy they are hoping to create with their own brands.


DRESS: Amsale MAKEUP: Juicy Looks by Abby HAIR: Hair by Sadiku

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D E S T I N AT I O N S DRESS: Amsale MAKEUP: Juicy Looks by Abby HAIR: Hair by Sadiku EARRINGS: Headpiece Heaven

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"An Amsale bride is someone who’s classic but modern. Her approach in design is very simple and clean yet sophisticated. She’s confident, she doesn’t like flashy thing[s]." AMSALE ABERRA

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he modern wedding dress as we know it today was pretty much invented by Amsale Aberra.

Wedding dresses of the 1980s − with their puffy sleeves, oversized trains, and overdone appliqué patterns − were everything Amsale did not want in 1985 while she was planning her own wedding. Out of a need for simplicity and understated elegance, the f irst Amsale gown, pictured center on our cover and on the inside front covers, was born. It was her f irst wedding dress − her own wedding dress -- and the start of the Amsale empire. Born March 1, 1954 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, Amsale had a penchant for fashion at an early age. As a child. she would make her own clothes and design outf its for her dolls. From Addis Ababa to the picturesque mountainsides of Vermont, Amsale attended Green Mountain College and pursued a degree in Commercial Art. A year later in 1974, with the overthrow of Ethiopia's emperor Haile Selassie, Ethiopia was in the midst of political turmoil, making it diff icult for her father - a government off icial - to continue to pay her college tuition. She then moved to Boston, where a half sister lived, and put herself through college at Boston State College, while making fashionable outf its for her friends. Eventually, she earned a degree in Political Science and began working at a coffee shop at Harvard University. It’s where she met her husband Neil Brown, a young Harvard University law student.

The pair later moved to New York City, where Amsale attended Fashion Institute of Technology, and would later on marry Neil Brown and go on to design her own wedding dress and transform the way wedding gowns are seen and worn today. A year after her wedding to Neil Brown, Amsale transformed their loft apartment to her f irst design studio. In the beginning, everything was done in her home. That included runway presentations, consultations and f ittings. By 1997 her Madison Avenue store was opened. Currently, the Amsale empire includes the glamorous Kenneth Pool collections, the romantic Christos collections, Nouvelle Amsale − a lower tiered collection of wedding gowns − and Amsale Bridesmaids. The iconic designer passed away at the age of 64 on April 1, 2018 from cancer and is survived by her husband Neil Brown, her father Aberra Moltot, her half sister Aster Yilma, and her daughter, Rachel Amsale Brown. She is also a board member for The Ethiopian Children’s Fund and a trustee of the Fashion Institute of Technology. Her legacy lives on at the Amsale headquarters, with a dedicated team of hard working individuals that adore Amsale, including a new head of design and development Margo Lafontaine, and Sarah Swann, who manages design operations. At the off ice, her desk, which overlooks all operations is adorned with her favorite f lowers each day − fresh orchids.

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Nneka Alexander BRIDES BY NONA in 2006. I started watching every single wedding show on T.V. to draw inspirations for my wedding and one wedding show that I particularly loved watching on WE TV was called Platinum Weddings. I remember one wedding gown caught my attention on the show and the designer was Amsale. From that day I was completely enamored with Amsale gowns and I knew I had to see and touch one for myself in person. That was the f irst time I laid eyes on an Amsale gown!

WHEN DID YOU BEGIN DESIGNING WEDDING DRESSES?

I started designing wedding dresses approximately f ive years ago - it actually started in a very funny way which I will chronicle in more detail later on in this article. HOW DO YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN ST YLE?

Sculptured lines and cuts with a signif icant amount of detailed crystal embellishments.

Now to the second special moment - when I actually tried on one! I always knew I would design my own wedding gown and it would be a princess silhouette gown, but I really wanted to get the experience of going gown shopping and trying on gowns of different silhouettes. As I bounced from one bridal atelier to the other in Manhattan I remember stumbling on Amsale's boutique and I was completely f loored as I stepped in. True to what I had seen on the T.V. shows - the ambiance, the layout of the storefront, the mannequins, the gowns were all breathtaking! I was greeted by an associate and asked if I was interested in any particular style. Boy! If only she knew that if I could take them all I would! I was interested in ALL the styles! I tried on a couple of gowns and I absolutely loved them!

WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE ARE THE CORNERSTONE DESIGN ELEMENTS OF EVERY WEDDING GOWN?

The f it! Every wedding gown should be perfectly tailored to the bride's unique body shape. Whether it's a simple gown or a debutante one, the gown should hug every curve on the bride's body. HOW DO YOU DEFINE THE LINE BETWEEN GOWN AND WEDDING GOWN?

Great question...especially in recent times where brides are walking down the aisle in more unconventional designs and are therefore blurring the lines between a regular gown and a wedding gown! In def ining the line between a regular gown and a wedding gown, I think it is more sentimental than anything else. The entire wedding journey (the planning, selection of bridesmaids, scouting the perfect gown and its matching accessories, hiring of vendors and other wedding professionals) is usually a once-in-a-lifetime event for most brides and so they attach a great deal of sentimental and emotional value to every part of the process. Hence, whatever attire the bride decides to wear (no matter how unconventional) becomes a wedding gown to her because of the sentimental value the gown represents.

AMSALE’S DESIGN DRIVE WAS IN CREATING TRANSCENDING FASHION STATEMENTS. WHEN THINKING OF FASHION THAT TRANSCENDS, WHAT IMMEDIATELY COMES TO MIND? HOW DO YOUR OWN DESIGNS TRANSCEND FASHION?

When thinking of fashion that transcends, what comes to mind for me is being a nonconformist and rising above the norm to make a lasting impression in the fashion world. I love making bold statements with my designs and so prevalent throughout my designs are oversized bows, exaggerated sleeves, 3-D embroidered lace atop sheer illusion necklines, royal length trains, crystal embellishments and structured shapes.

DO YOU REMEMBER THE FIRST TIME YOU SAW AN AMSALE AMSALE BELIEVED THAT TRUE ST YLE IS TIMELESS. WHAT

GOWN?

DESIGN ELEMENTS DO YOU FIND TO BE TIMELESS?

Absolutely! I remember very clearly the f irst time I saw an Amsale gown and the f irst time I actually tried on an Amsale gown - two very special moments which I will explain. The f irst time I saw an Amsale gown was shortly after my husband proposed to me

FALL.2018

I am a tad bit obsessed with royal lineages (thanks to my Mom who always kept up with them as far back as when I was an adolescent). When I think of elements of timeless designs my mind goes straight

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D E S T I N AT I O N S DRESS: Brides by Nona EARRINGS: Joanna Laura Constantine; HEADPIECE: Headpiece Heaven; MAKEUP: Juicy Looks by Abby; HAIR: Hair by Sadiku

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to royal weddings of the past: Queen Victoria I, Queen Elizabeth II, Grace Kelly, Queen Beatrix of the Netherlands, the people's princess Lady Diana, and of course the most recent Meghan Markle. What made their designs timeless? The fabric alone, the dress silhouette, the cut, the structured details, and of course those darling cathedral and royal length trains that f illed the aisles of the cathedral churches leaving us speechless! Rarely did we see a royal wedding gown that was drenched in embellished details. Instead we saw simple, structured gowns made from the f inest fabrics available. All these make up for the design elements which I f ind to be timeless. IN 1985 AMSALE BEGAN HER JOURNEY INTO THE WORLD OF FASHION WITH WEDDING GOWNS. IN A TIME MARKED BY INFL ATED FORMS AND EL ABORATE DETAILS SHE WENT AGAINST THE GRAIN WITH CLEAN, ELEGANT DESIGNS OF “QUIET IMPACT.” HOW HAS YOUR WORK GONE AGAINST CURRENT TRENDS? HOW DO YOU DEFINE “QUIET IMPACT?”

I remember when I started off icially designing wedding gowns f ive years ago the bespoke process was not very popular. Brides were f looding traditional bridal stores and purchasing gowns off the rack - it was a safer and easier approach for them - they see the gown they love, they try it on and they purchase it. Being that my brand focuses on bespoke gowns, I knew I had to work extra hard to convince brides to patronize my brand which had only been around for less than a year. I noticed that brides loved embellished details on their gowns and the selection of embellished gowns available on the racks in bridal stores was very limited so I capitalized on that. I began creating gowns completely embellished from top to bottom and in different silhouettes to offer these brides the variety they wanted. I allowed brides the "controlled" liberty of choosing how much sparkle they wanted on their gowns and what areas on their gowns they wanted these embellished details. It worked! They didn't have to settle for the limited selections on the racks in stores - I offered them a "wonderland" of details and design options which they had always dreamed of. My def inition of "quiet impact" would be understated inf luence. The use of subtle means to drive long-lasting change, as seen in how Amsale revolutionized the modern American wedding dress through the introduction of her sophisticated, clean designs in a time marked by elaborate details. HOW HAS AMSALE DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY INFLUENCED

aesthetics that we embrace so wildly today. Amsale's "dareto-be-different-while-staying-true-to-yourself" story is a great inspiration to me. In a world where it is easy to get lost while following trends, it is important to understand your own unique gifting and pursue it relentlessly even if you do so alone. AMSALE’S FIR ST STEP INTO TH E INDUSTR Y CAME OUT OF NECESSIT Y. H OW H AS NECESSIT Y SH APED YOUR OWN PATH?

Mine is a very interesting story - though not arising from necessity. My twin sister had just got engaged and was planning her wedding. It was in the year 2013 and I was ecstatic for her. We were both celebrating milestones in our lives - I had just had my f irst child and she was getting married. It was all great until she dropped the bombshell and asked me to design her six bridesmaids dresses, her wedding gown, her wedding reception gown, her pre-wedding dinner gown, and my gown as the matron of honor...10 gowns in total! I vehemently refused! There was no way I was going to make 10 gowns as I was still recovering from childbirth but she wasn't taking no for an answer so she escalated it to my parents. In the Nigerian culture parents are pretty much the highest form of authority in the community so they have the f inal and ONLY say in the outcome of a situation. I could not compete with the parental veto so I proceeded to make all 10 gowns, begrudgingly! Fast forward months later to the wedding day and all 10 dresses were a hit! Her wedding was featured in the national newspapers in Nigeria and broadcasted on T.V. stations. On social media her wedding was a viral sensation with photos of the dresses making their rounds on major wedding blogs on the internet with my brand being credited as the designer. Long story short, I woke up one morning to 100 emails in my inbox from brides asking me to design their wedding gowns and the rest is history! WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT AN AMSALE DESIGN?

If I could use three words to describe Amsale's designs they would be: effortless, understated glamour! Her gowns are simple yet iconic. Having personally tried on her gowns in the past, I loved the way her gowns f itted me and the proportions were just right! The waistline of her ball gowns wrapped around my waist like they were made just for me. The necklines were immaculately cut with perfect precision and the pleats around the skirt were so perfect you couldn't tell the back from the front. Perfection in every single gown!

AND INSPIRED YOU AND YOUR OWN WORK?

Being of Ethiopian origin, Amsale paved the way for designers of African descent like me to make an indelible mark in the world of fashion. Amsale's incredible journey began in the 80's when wedding gown fashions were elaborate and overstated. She introduced pared down designs with little to no f luff or f lounce, transforming wedding gown fashions to the modern minimalist

To learn more about Nneka, visit her website at www.bridesbynona.com


D E S T I N AT I O N S


D EDRESS: S T I N AT N SThurin JeanI O Ralph EARRINGS: Headpiece Heaven; HAIR: Glamour by Shaniqua; MAKEUP: Brides by Melanie B.

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Jean-Ralph Thurin JEAN RALPH THURIN WHEN DID YOU BEGIN DESIGNING WEDDING DRESSES?

My senior year at Parsons School of Design, I was asked by my classmate to design her gown and thus began my love affair with wedding dresses! HOW DO YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN ST YLE?

Effortless Elegance with an unwavering attention to detail. WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE ARE THE CORNERSTONE DESIGN ELEMENTS OF EVERY WEDDING GOWN?

Design, f it and comfortability.

I think lace, textured fabrics and elegant embellishments are always timeless. IN 1985 AMSALE BEGAN HER JOURNEY INTO THE WORLD OF FASHION WITH WEDDING GOWNS. IN A TIME MARKED BY INFL ATED FORMS AND EL ABORATE DETAILS SHE WENT AGAINST THE GRAIN WITH CLEAN, ELEGANT DESIGNS OF “QUIET IMPACT.” HOW HAS YOU WORK GONE AGAINST CURRENT TRENDS? HOW DO YOU DEFINE “QUIET IMPACT?”

My work has gone more against trends, embraced some and made some new ones along the way. Every designer is capable of creating their own quiet impact by simply staying true to one's design philosophy. HOW HAS AMSALE DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY INFLUENCED AND INSPIRED YOU AND YOUR OWN WORK?

HOW DO YOU DEFINE THE LINE BETWEEN GOWN AND WEDDING GOWN?

I believe that wedding gowns evoke a different feeling from the bride than evening gowns. There is a romantic quality about a bridal gown that just distinguishes it from the rest. DO YOU REMEMBER THE FIRST TIME YOU SAW AN AMSALE GOWN?

Yes, I was looking at brides magazine collection reviews and thought to myself how consistent and elegant the look of her collection was! AMSALE’S DESIGN DRIVE WAS IN CREATING TRANSCENDING FASHION STATEMENTS. WHEN THINKING OF FASHION THAT TRANSCENDS, WHAT IMMEDIATELY COMES TO MIND? HOW DO YOUR OWN DESIGNS TRANSCEND FASHION?

When I am designing, I do believe in creating timeless pieces that will transcend the trendy looks offered in today's bridal fashions. As a custom designer, oftentimes my work is guided to the personal desires of each of my clients but as for my collections, they are based on either locations or design elements that I have found inspiration from as opposed to trends. AMSALE BELIEVED THAT TRUE ST YLE IS TIMELESS. WHAT DESIGN ELEMENTS DO YOU FIND TO BE TIMELESS?

For the longest time, I did not realize that Amsale was African. Once I found this out I was even more inspired with her work, for simply creating elegant bridal gowns that were consistent with her brand and for staying true to who you are and the women you design for. AMSALE’S FIR ST STEP INTO TH E INDUSTR Y CAME OU T OF NECESSIT Y. H OW H AS NECESSIT Y SH APED YOUR OWN PATH?

Passion fueled my hunger for designing. I also grew up in Africa and always saw my mother wear elegant outf its and dresses to various occasions she would go to with my father. From then, I always thought I would be dressing her someday. WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT AN AMSALE DESIGN?

I loved Amsale for her design philosophy and the fact that she always stayed true to the brand she created!

To learn more about Jean-Ralph, visit his website at www.jeanralphthurin.com.

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"My work

has gone more against trends, embraced some and made some new ones along the way. Every designer is capable of

creating their own quiet impact by simply staying true to one's design

philosophy." - Jean-Ralph Thurin


D E S T I N AT I O N S

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Andrea Pitter-Campbell PANTORA BRIDAL WHEN DID YOU BEGIN DESIGNING WEDDING DRESSES?

IN 1985 AMSALE BEGAN HER JOURNEY INTO THE WORLD OF FASHION WITH WEDDING GOWNS. IN A TIME MARKED BY INFL ATED FORMS AND EL ABORATE DETAILS SHE WENT AGAINST THE GRAIN WITH CLEAN, ELEGANT DESIGNS OF “QUIET IMPACT.” HOW HAS YOU WORK GONE AGAINST CURRENT TRENDS?

I designed my f irst commissioned wedding dress in 2009. It was a cotton maxi styled sundress f it for a very casual wedding in central park, very different from my current contemporary aesthetic.

My current work goes against the grain by f itting women who would often be considered a hard f it. By providing women, specif ically those who look like me, the type of “fancy” that isn’t relatable in mainstream bridal fashion.

HOW DO YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN ST YLE?

My design style is based on classic silhouettes with the use of modern textiles. I prefer not to distort a woman’s f igure by design but rather embellish it with the use of textile furnishes.

HOW DO YOU DEFINE “QUIET IMPACT?”

HOW DO YOU DEFINE THE LINE BETWEEN GOWN AND WEDDING GOWN?

Quiet impact is the idea of just doing and letting work stand alone.

A wedding dress gives you a transitional feeling. It’s a physical thing that ties you to a life altering event signed off by love. A gown ties you to any event.

HOW HAS AMSALE DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY INFLUENCED AND INSPIRED YOU AND YOUR OWN WORK?

DO YOU REMEMBER THE FIRST TIME YOU SAW AN AMSALE GOWN?

Amsale was a storm. She revolutionized the idea of bridal simplicity in a time where it was popular to be anything but. She inspired me in the way that she worked, humbly.

I remember being obsessed by Amsale herself. Her gowns were strikingly clean and overwhelmingly effortless, like she was. Amsale was authentic.

AMSALE’S FIRST STEP INTO THE INDUSTRY CAME OUT OF NECESSITY. HOW HAS NECESSITY SHAPED YOUR OWN PATH?

AMSALE’S DESIGN DRIVE WAS IN CREATING TRANSCENDING FASHION STATEMENTS. WHEN THINKING OF FASHION THAT TRANSCENDS, WHAT IMMEDIATELY COMES TO MIND? HOW DO YOUR OWN DESIGNS TRANSCEND FASHION?

I have always needed to march to the beat of my own drum, often off beat, out of tune and off pitch. I needed outlets to keep me occupied and problems to solve. Fashion was this outlet for me. WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT AN AMSALE DESIGN?

When I think of fashion that transcends, I think of it crossing barriers, mending brokenness. I’m not sure that my body of work does. I also think that’s ok. I feel like my work is currently f illing in gaps, maybe when I am more mature in my presence and in my work I will view it differently.

I love that Amsale’s designs were effortless. I love that her simplistic design aesthetic made her an anomaly.

AMSALE BELIEVED THAT TRUE ST YLE IS TIMELESS. WHAT DESIGN ELEMENTS DO YOU FIND TO BE TIMELESS?

To learn more about Andrea, visit her website at www.pantorabridal.com.

I believe emphasis on the body and letting fabric do the work is the def inition of timeless fashion.

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D E S T I N AT I O N S DRESS: Pantora Bridal EARRINGS ON DESIGNER: Joanna Laura Constantine; HAIR: Glamour by Shaniqua; MAKEUP: (model) Juicy Looks by Abby, (designer) Brides by Melanie B.; EARRINGS ON MODEL: Headpiece Heaven

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"AMSALE

was a storm.

She revolutionized the idea of bridal simplicity in a time where it was popular to be anything but. She inspired me in the way that she worked...

humbly."

- andrea pitter-campbell


D E S T I N AT I O N S DRESS: Kosibah HEADPIECE: Headpiece Heaven; SHOES: James Chan; EARRINGS: Headpiece Heaven; MAKEUP: Brides by Melanie B; HAIR: Hair by Sadiku

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Yemi Osunkoya KOSIBAH WHEN DID YOU BEGIN DESIGNING WEDDING DRESSES?

distinguishes a wedding gown from any other type of gown.

I began designing wedding dresses that I made myself from scratch in 1991. Previous to that, I’d sketch the design but had to rely on dressmakers to bring my vision to life which was very frustrating for me.

DO YOU REMEMBER THE FIRST TIME YOU SAW AN AMSALE GOWN?

HOW DO YOU DESCRIBE YOUR DESIGN ST YLE? I would describe my design style as producing f igure enhancing classic gowns with clean silhouettes that aim to f latter and celebrate the shape of whomever wears them. WHAT DO YOU BELIEVE ARE THE CORNERSTONE DESIGN ELEMENTS OF EVERY WEDDING GOWN? Fit. The gown should f it the bride as perfectly as is possible. Flattering. The gown should f latter and enhance the f igure of the bride. Statement. The dress should make a statement (quietly or loudly) about the personality of the bride and the fact she is the centre of attraction. Detail. The gown should have great details. HOW DO YOU DEFINE THE LINE BETWEEN GOWN AND WEDDING GOWN?

The f irst Amsale dress that stood out to me was an Ivory strapless gown with an A line skirt and a pale blue sash draped slightly below the waistline in front and seemed to be tied in a loop slightly lower at the back with the wider ends of the sash sitting on the train of the gown. It was exquisite in its simplicity, and the sash was such a statement of restrained elegance. I absolutely loved it. I’m not sure exactly which year this was or what the gown was called. AMSALE’S DESIGN DRIVE WAS IN CREATING TRANSCENDING FASHION STATEMENTS. WHEN THINKING OF FASHION THAT TRANSCENDS, WHAT IMMEDIATELY COMES TO MIND? What immediately comes to mind when thinking of design that transcends fashion is a gown a bride can look at 10, 15, 20 years down the line and not feel embarrassed about or look extremely dated. HOW DO YOUR OWN DESIGNS TRANSCEND FASHION? I design specif ically for each client for whom I’m creating a couture bridal gown at anytime and I take into consideration lots of factors pertaining to her specif ic needs with the ultimate aim of creating a gown that will mimic the classical hourglass silhouette. Though I sometimes give a nod to present trends via design elements or fabric choice, I usually design timeless pieces that eventually withstand the passage of time.

The line between gowns and wedding gowns can be blurred when it comes to extremely simple gowns or destination wedding gowns especially if they are in colours that are not white or Ivory.

AMSALE BELIEVED THAT TRUE ST YLE IS TIMELESS. WHAT DESIGN ELEMENTS DO YOU FIND TO BE TIMELESS?

Usually the colour (shades from brilliant white to champagne), the detailing of the gown, the quality of the fabrics and embellishments used in its creation, the length of the skirt train, is all what

Clean lines, unfussy detailing, restraining oneself from adding too many trends into the design and use of beautiful fabrics and muted embellishments lend themselves to creating timeless and classic gowns.

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"Though

I sometimes give a nod to present trends via design elements or fabric choice, I usually design

timeless pieces

that eventually withstand the passage of time." -yemi osunkoya

IN 1985 AMSALE BEGAN HER JOURNEY INTO THE WORLD OF FASHION WITH WEDDING GOWNS. IN A TIME MARKED BY INFL ATED FORMS AND EL ABORATE DETAILS SHE WENT AGAINST THE GRAIN WITH CLEAN, ELEGANT DESIGNS OF “QUIET IMPACT.” HOW HAS YOUR WORK GONE AGAINST CURRENT TRENDS? I have always wanted to create beautiful, elegant gowns made with great attention to detail and perfect f inishing right from the beginning of my career. I was very inf luenced by the couture techniques used by designers of the New Look era of the late 1940’s/early 1950’s by designers such as Dior, Givenchy and Balenciaga. I decided to concentrate on design elements developed through clever pattern drafting and manipulation rather than elaborate ruff les or laud/excessive embellishments to create my bridal gowns. I was lucky to be trained in Old School couture techniques, now sadly dying out because of its very time consuming nature, so I’m able to draft patterns taken from over 26 precise body measurements of each client of any design I sketch. I therefore create gowns that may not slavishly tick off current trends but still make an impact on the day, create a f igure for the bride that stuns her guests in a good way and have the distinct Kosibah silhouette I have developed and honed over the years. HOW DO YOU DEFINE “QUIET IMPACT?” I def ine quiet impact as the gown that makes you mull over how and why exactly it’s elicited a reaction from you rather than the full force whammy of a laud, over the top or avant garde gown. HOW HAS AMSALE DIRECTLY OR INDIRECTLY INFLUENCED AND INSPIRED YOU AND YOUR OWN WORK? I was inf luenced positively by Amsale at a time when I almost began to doubt my design aesthetic of restrained elegance and thought perhaps I ought to push the boat and create over the top designs or gowns with exaggerated design elements which I could force myself to do, but her designs reassured me that I could indeed farrow my own design path in the safe knowledge that the Kosibah bride out there will seek me for the gowns I produce that remain true to my personal design style. AMSALE’S FIRST STEP INTO THE INDUSTRY CAME OUT OF NECESSIT Y. HOW HAS NECESSIT Y SHAPED YOUR OWN PATH? I on the other hand, had always wanted to be a fashion designer. I had a talent for sketching dresses and human f igures from a very early age which was fortunately encouraged and nurtured by my parents and Art teachers. Because of the labour intensive and time consuming process involved in creating gowns the way I was trained, I realised that to be able to charge what I deserved, only formal and bridal gowns would be viable to produce from a business point of view. That realization and the fact my designs lent themselves to elegance, grace and spotlight, bridal and special occasion wear was a natural progression for me. WHAT DO YOU LOVE MOST ABOUT AN AMSALE DESIGN? What I love most about an Amsale design is its timelessness, deceptive simplicity and exquisite f inishing.

To learn more about Yemi, visit his website at www.kosibah.com.

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FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS EDITORIAL VISIT OUR WEBSITE AT WWW.MUNALUCHIBRIDAL.COM.

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D E S T I N AT I O N S

Meet The Team

We are happy to have worked with a number of Coterie Members behind-the-scenes on this exclusive editorial shoot. Meet the Coterie members that were a part of this special day.

PHOTOGRAPHER Dajuan Jones

PHOTOGRAPHY ASST. Nana Annan

MAKEUP Abby Folare-Ayodeji

MAKEUP Melanie Brown

IN HIS IMAGE PHOTOGRAPHY www.inhisimagephotography.com

NANA ANNAN PHOTOGRAPHY www.nanaannan.com

JUICY LOOKS BY ABBY www.myjuicylooks.com

BRIDES BY MELANIE B www.bridesbymelanieb.com

CINEMATOGRAPHERS Benjamin + Natasha Davis

HAIRSTYLIST Shaniqua Pender

HAIRSTYLIST Tinika Sadiku

ACCESSORIES Headpiece Heaven

YAMEAN STUDIOS www.yameanstudios.com

GLAMOUR BY SHANIQUA www.styleseat.com/m/v/ glamourbyshaniqua

HAIR BY SADIKU www.tinikasadiku.com

HEADPIECE HEAVEN www.headpieceheaven.com

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com


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photo: samDjasper photography ESTIN AT I O N S

AN EXPERIENTIAL WEDDING SHOW BY MUNALUCHI

new jersey

bahamas

toronto

more cities to be announced.

london

miami

get tickets at www.munaloveaffair.com

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houston

dmv


W EDDING I D EAS Get inspired by this inspiration shoot designed by Akeshi Akinseye for her recent Kesh Experience. Photographed by Amy Anaiz Photography


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D E S T I N AT I O N S

CREATIVE TEAM FLORALS AND DECOR: Kesh SWEETS: Vanille

Patisserie

ENTERTAINMENT: Gold

Photog raphy

LINENS: Nuage

Coast Events

VIDEO: Mirar

MAKE UP: Bridal

Models

Events HOTEL: Kimpton Gray Hotel

by Aga

ROSES: Rosaprima

STATIONERY: Parchment

DRAPING + LIGHTING: A

Productions

HAIR: Juan

linens

by Dami

Posh Production

DANCEFLOOR: Laced

Jose Herara

CALLIGRAPHY: Callig raphy

Vinyl Shoppe

by CT

CAKE AND

NAPKINS: Adorn

PHOTOGRAPHY: Amy

Unlimited

Anaiz

BRIDAL STORE: Dimitras

MENSWEAR: Jojayden RENTALS: Northern

Decor

Bridal

MODELS: Rock

EVENT DESIGNER

Akeshi Akinseye KESH EVENTS www.keshevents.com

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com


love & football DEANNA + QUINCY Dumbo, Brooklyn, NY. Metlife Stadium, New Jersey

BRIDE-TO-BE: Deanna Fernandez GROOM-TO-BE: Quincy Enunwa OCCUPATIONS: Clinical Therapist and NFL Wide Receiver WEDDING DATE: June 1, 2019 WEDDING LOCATION: The Rockleigh, Rockleigh, NJ

HOW THEY MET: "We met on Instagram, but it's not what you think! Willie Colon, who is my cousin and Quincy's former NY Jets teammate, did some background work and exchanged our Instagrams as a way for us to "e-meet" and connect. A few f lirtatious DM's and text messages later, we formally met at Willie's birthday party. Shout-out to Willie for playing cupid! At that time, I was preparing for graduate school at Columbia University, and Quincy was gearing up for his second season with the NY Jets. A few years of memories later, we moved to Montclair, NJ and added a 4 lb teacup Yorkie named Charlie to our family (I'm still getting the side-eye from Quincy for choosing this tiny dog!)." THE PROPOSAL... "On December 31, 2017 we were celebrating New Year's Eve with close friends in Atlantic City, NJ. While I suspected Quincy was up to something, he remained calm and collected (as usual) throughout the day. Little did I know I was in for the surprise of my life! Shortly before midnight we


D E S T I N AT I O N S


were on our way to see "f ireworks," in a limo with friends. It was FREEZING! December, near the water... I think I still have frostbite! Quincy got out of the limo f irst to brave the cold and after everyone else got out, I stepped out searching for f ireworks and instead saw "DEANNA WILL YOU MARRY ME?" on the side of Harrah's Resort Hotel & Casino! I’m pretty sure I bent over crying, in total disbelief. I don't really remember what Quincy said, I just remember crying, screaming, and then crying about ruining my makeup. Then, as if my heart wasn't already exploding, our parents hopped out of hidden cars! I can't believe our moms managed to play cool for so long! My parents lied about attending a New Year's Eve party (major side-eye) and I was convinced I wouldn't see Mr. and Mrs. Enunwa for several months. We were already surrounded by such close friends but having them there made that moment extremely special. We love you guys! Life update: I graduated last May with a double-master's in clinical psychology and currently work as a clinical therapist. Quincy is fully healed (praise God!) and is preparing for his f ifth NFL season with the NY Jets. Neither one of us know exactly what's in store, but we know we want to f igure it out together. Countdown to forever! THE FIRST DATE:

"We went to the movies and then dinner at Sugar Factory."


FAVORITE THINGS TO DO AS A COUPLE: " Visit

the zoo!"

THE ENGAGEMENT SESSION.

"Of course it was 100% humidity in NYC that day and the mission was to protect my hair! We were originally scheduled to begin shooting at 10am but decided to shoot at 6am so we could be done around 10 and avoid peak heat and humidity. It was so much fun getting all dressed up and shooting with Kesha! She’s so sweet and funny, and she’s super bomb at what she does. HOW DID YOU KNOW HE/SHE WAS “THE ONE”?

Deanna: “I knew he was ‘the one’ over time as I noticed small (but important) things like how he treated his family, his personality, how thoughtful, silly, and vulnerable he was. It was so refreshing!” Quincy: “I knew she was ‘the one’ when she sat in the stands with my parents for the f irst time and got along so well with them, without me ever introducing her to them (She’s from NY, I play for a NY team and my parents live in California).” HOW HAS WEDDING PLANNING BEEN? "Rollercoaster!

So many highs and lows but we’re both learning to enjoy this emotional ride! "

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WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST?

" Watching our family and friends come together to celebrate our love." PHOTOGRAPHY : Kesha Lambert


REAL WEDDINGS

CINDY + GLENN C A N C U N , M E X I CO

JUNE 17, 2018 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y S t a n l o P h o t o g ra p hy

Text by Samuel Naumick

C

indy and Glenn’s love story began in Houston as Pharmacy students during a gala party hosted by the African Pharmacy Students Association. Invited to be part of the gala’s fashion show, they were paired together, dancing down the runway and into each other’s hearts while wearing the latest in Nigerian attire. They were so natural together that audience members assumed they were a couple, already picking up on the magnetism between them. Engaged in great conversation they were exchanging numbers by the end of the night. Glenn called Cindy the very next day and they’ve “literally talked every day since.” It wouldn’t be long before Glenn began to realize that Cindy was “the one” and so planned their perfect proposal. Graduating with her doctorate of pharmacy in May 2016, Cindy’s family planned a party to celebrate the achievement, providing Glenn with the ideal moment. With over three hundred people in attendance Cindy was completely caught off guard when in front of everyone Glenn asked her to spend the rest of their lives together as husband and wife – an eruption of cheers f illing the venue. For Cindy, she knew Glenn was “the one” within the f irst few months of their relationship. Even though they lived in different cities they spoke everyday and their chemistry was instantaneous. In Cindy’s words,

SUMMER.2018

“it got to the point where I couldn’t see myself not talking to him every day…my feelings were growing deep and I could see him being a husband and a father to my children one day…I knew I was falling in love at that moment…” Their beautiful destination wedding took place in tropical Cancun, Mexico, on a resort terrace overlooking the beach. Cindy was gorgeous in a custom Israeli gown with sparkly tulle, twelve foot train, and lace & pearl detailing. Best Memories: My favorite memory was walking down the aisle with my dad to “Here and Now” by Luther Vandross, which really set the mood. It was my dad’s f irst time escorting his daughter down the aisle and it was also Father’s Day so it was even more special. It was an emotional moment for me and the tears were unstoppable. When I locked eyes with my handsome husband, my heart was full. Advice for Engaged Couples: Do not stress about the small things because everything ends up working out at the end! It is YOUR day so be sure to enjoy it. It'll be here before you know it!

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REAL WEDDINGS


Quick Facts From The Bride ADVICE FOR BRIDES:

If you feel pressed for time, it’s ok to have everyone wait a little bit for your big entrance! Try not to stress on your wedding day and live in the moment! FAVORITE ITEM ON THE MENU:

Apple strudel dessert and wedding cake FIRST DANCE SONG:

“Best of Me” by Anthony Hamilton, “Hero” by Enrique Iglesias


D E S T I N AT I O N S

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

WEDDING PLANNER Chioma Nwogu-Johnson DURE EVENTS www.dureevents.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Stanley Babb STANLO PHOTOGRAPHY www.stanlophotography.com

VENDORS BRIDE'S DRESS: Naama and Anat Bridal BRIDAL SALON: The Blushing Bride Boutique BRIDE’S HEADPIECE AND/OR VEIL: Stacy’s Bridal on Etsy CAKES/DESSERTS: Royalton Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa CATERING: Royalton Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa CEREMONY VENUE: Sky Terrace at the Royalton Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa EVENT DECOR/DESIGN/FLORALS: Alquimia Events DJ/MC: DJ Don X EVENT PLANNER: Dure Events GROOM/GROOMSMEN ATTIRE: King Hakbal HAIR: Transformed by O MAKEUP: Irie Jade Beauty & Kryptic Concepts PHOTOGRAPHY: Stanlo Photog raphy RECEPTION VENUE: Royalton Riviera Cancun Resort & Spa VIDEOGRAPHY: AB Motion


WEED DD DIIN NGGSS RREEAALL W

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OLUFUNKE + BABAJIDE PA R I S , F R A N C E

AUGUST 18, 2018 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y T h e P a r i s P h o t o g ra p h e r

Text by Samuel Naumick

T

hough Funke and Jide met on a blind date their hearts were seeing more clearly than ever, recognizing their

soul’s mate in each other. That f irst date quickly led to a second, followed by a third, and with each date came further reassurance that the connection they shared together was anything but ordinary - this was something special, something meant to be. Jide planned their perfect proposal for Cinco de Mayo of 2016, at the place in which they f irst met. Telling Funke that they were attending a professional event, she was more than pleasantly surprised to f ind all of her friends and family wishing her a happy belated birthday. As the “birthday party” continued, unbeknownst to Funke, this multifaceted celebration was about to reveal its biggest surprise. Halfway into the evening, the wall to the room next door opens to reveal Jide with a stunning engagement ring in hand, as he asks Funke to spend the rest of their lives together as husband and wife. In Funke’s words, “it was an absolute dream!” For Funke, wedding shopping was an “easy and fast” experience, having selected the second dress she tried on from Kleinfeld Bridal, New York - “once I tried that, I didn’t try any other ones, I knew that was ‘the one.’” On her wedding day she was gorgeous walking down the aisle in a mermaid/ trumpet style Pnina gown, with custom veil and Aquazurra shoes. Jide was handsomely sophisticated in a limited edition Tom Ford tuxedo and Christian Louboutin Mohair dress shoes. Their wedding was an unforgettable luxe, elegant and fun event at the Chapelle Expiatoire in Paris, France.


I would advise "anyone to do what

is best for you and your partner. Not what people expect or want you to do." - Funke


REAL WEDDINGS

Best Memories:

"The best memory from my wedding was walking into the absolutely breathtaking chapel. I will never forget that exact moment. I took one step inside, looked up and could feel the presence of God. It was an amazing outer body experience. As if I was stepping out of my past and into my future." Advice for Engaged Couples: "I would advise anyone to do what is best for you and your partner. Not what people expect or want you to do. A few months after Jide proposed we found out I was pregnant and cancelled our plans for a wedding in Mexico. We started planning for Houston and then I became pregnant again. Once that happened we said let’s just go to Paris after this one is born. We were in desperate need of just us time so off we went." MUNALUCHI BRIDE

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WEDDING PLANNER

Chioma Nwogu Johnson DURE EVENTS www.dureevents.com

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

VENDORS The Paris Photog rapher

PHOTO:

WEDDING PLANNER: VIDEO: DÉCOR:

Esther Lamarche Desig n Florist

CAKE:

Sweet Creations Cake

CUSTOM MENU CHARGERS: LINENS: CHAPEL: OFFICIANT:

Parchment by Dami

Elegant Beg inings Chapelle Expiatorie

Pierre Therond of Love Gracefully Ceremonies HARPIST:

Myriam Serfess

BRIDAL STYLIST: HAIR:

Dure Events

Irina Krupovich

Vainglorious Brides

Ciara Coiffure & MB Luxe Wig Artistry

MUA:

Adjinaya & Anjali Beauty Artist

RINGS:

Cartier & Tacori Official

WEDDING DRESS: VEIL:

Kleinfeld Bridal & Pnina Tornai Elisha Caplan Bridal

BRIDES SHOES: LASHES:

Aquazzura

About Face Esthetics & Brandi Holmes GROOM'S SUIT:

Tom Ford

GROOM SHOES:

Louboutin

HOTEL:

Plaza Athenee


REAL WEDDINGS

PARIS + VERNON P H I L A D E L P H I A , P E N N S Y L VA N I A M AY 1 8 , 2 0 1 8 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y K a n a y o A d i b e

Text by Samuel Naumick

E

ven though Paris and Vernon met during college in

received details regarding their trip from her mother in

2008 and shared numerous mutual friends, it wasn’t

order to plan their perfect proposal.

until late 2014 that their relationship would begin to develop. In her third year of law school in Washington

For Paris, wedding shopping was “so much fun.” Over the

D.C., Paris received a random text message on a Saturday

course of a few months she took numerous trips to bridal

morning while on a train back to her home state of

stores with her mother, mother-in-law, and bridesmaids

Delaware. “Just thinking about you, hope all is well…,”

- falling in love with at least one dress at every store she

Vernon’s text message read. For the remainder of Paris’

went to. Their wedding style was a “modern take on a

train trip they caught up over text messages and realized

traditional wedding,” and when the big day arrived she

they were attending the same open mic night a few days

walked the aisle in an elegant Berta gown, f itted with a sexy

later. The sparks f lew between on the evening of the open

f lare and beautiful train. Vernon met her at the altar in a

mic, after which they’ve remained inseparable ever since.

custom designed Henry Couture Paris suit with Salvatore Ferragamo shoes.

Sharing birthdays a week apart, Paris decided to surprise Vernon with a trip to the Dominican Republic for his

Best Memories:

thirtieth birthday. Unfortunately an approaching hurricane

Vern: “My best memory from our wedding was watching

would place their trip in the center of poor weather. Able to switch the f lights to Mexico, Paris’ surprise birthday trip for Vernon was saved. On the f irst night of their trip they enjoyed a romantic dinner to celebrate both of their birthdays. Halfway through, a photographer stopped by their cabana to ask if they would like their picture taken. After taking a few, Vernon turned to Paris, dropped to one knee, and asked Paris to spend the rest of her life together as husband and wife. Completely shocked, her initial response was “are you sure” before answering with a resounding yes. Little did she know that Vernon had

Paris come down the aisle. She was stunning.” Paris: “My best memory was our reception entrance and celebrating all night long with our family and friends.”

Advice for Engaged Couples: "Enjoy the process - it goes by really fast. As a couple, don't be afraid to be a little self ish, and don't sacrif ice your desires to please others - it is your day after all! Also, don't sweat the small stuff - and roll with the punches!"


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View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

WEDDING PLANNER Tiffany Chalk TIFFANY CHALK EVENTS www.tiffanychalkevents.com

FLORIST Eilena Mercier EVENT LOFT www.eventloftpa.com

VENDORS WEDDING PLANNER:

Tiffany Chalk Events

BRIDE'S DRESS + BOLERO:

Berta

purchased at L'Fay Bridal BRIDE'S/BRIDESMAIDS' HAIR: Courtney Willis BRIDE'S/ BRIDEMAIDS' MAKEUP: BAND:

ENTERTAINMENT/DJ Mike Williams MIKE MUSIC www.iknowmikemusic.com

Robin Lynette

Armorris Jewelers

CUFFLINKS:

GROOM'S SUIT:

Salvatore Ferragamo

GROOM'S WEDDING BAND:

Mike Music CATERER:

BAND:

FLORIST:

Javar Pastreno

Eilena Mercier of Event Loft

The Company Band Live

OFFICIANT:

GROOM'S SHOES/

GROOM'S/GROOMSMENS' HAIR:

Cartier

Finley Catering

CineMavericks

BRIDE'S ENGAGEMENT RING/WEDDING

Henry Couture Paris

PHOTOGRAPHER:

VENUE:

DJ:

Ballroom at the Ben

Kanayo Adibe

VIDEOGRAPHER:

Pastor Christopher Rue of Word of Life Christian

Center CEREMONY VENUE: St. John the Evangelist WEDDING INVITATIONS: Ijorere


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alma mater

CHANDREA + DEVIN The Ancient Spanish Monastery

BRIDE-TO-BE:

Chandrea Carter

GROOM-TO-BE: OCCUPATIONS:

Devin Masline

Program Manager & General Contractor

WEDDING DATE:

December 8, 2018

WEDDING LOCATION:

Jacksonville, FL

HOW THEY MET:

“Although Devin and I both attended The University of South Florida, I didn’t meet him until a couple of years after he graduated and I was in my senior year of undergrad. We engaged in small talk at this popular club for the f irst time, and then we went our separate ways. It wasn’t until a few weeks later that I


would see Devin again, at yet another party. He had this infectious smile when he entered the room that would make me want to know more about him. The following day, my line sisters and I were together and I inquired about him. As fate would have it, one of my line sisters said she knew his roommate and they happened to live at the same apartment complex we were visiting. It was suggested we go over to their place and engage in conversation to get to know Devin better. After it was conf irmed they were home, a few of us walked over to their apartment. Devin and his roommate were both sitting on the couch when we all entered. We chatted for about 20 minutes and then left. While walking back to my line sister’s apartment, I told one of them to let Devin know I was interested. My line sister texted Devin’s roommate


and relayed the message. He texted her back saying Devin was just talking about how attractive I was. We exchanged numbers and the rest is history.” THE PROPOSAL .

“Family is so important to both of us. I wanted both parents present when I popped the question. We were in Chandrea’s hometown for her family reunion. I had my immediate family drive 5 hours to her hometown and meet us at Ruth Chris. Chandrea’s immediate family and I were already seated when my family entered the restaurant. She was surprised to see them and once they joined us I took the f loor, got on one knee, and asked her to marry me.” - Devin FAVORITE THING TO DO AS A COUPLE:

"We enjoy doing adventurous activities together - ATV riding, horseback riding,

relationship and I had to have an emergency surgery. It was in the middle of the night when the doctors decided to do the surgery. Without hesitation, she hopped into her car to get on the road to be by my side.” Chandrea: “I knew he was the one when I found myself wanting

rock climbing, just to name a few of our

to be a better person.”

favorites."

HOW HAS WEDDING PLANNING BEEN?

THE ENGAGEMENT SESSION:

"It has its highs and lows but mostly it’s been great. The food tasting has been our favorite

"The Ancient Spanish Monastery was a gorgeous venue and had a lot of character. Not to mention working with our photographer Stanley was great. He was attentive to detail, if there was a string of hair out of place he was sure to let us know. We were able to wrap up the session in time to beat the South Florida heat." THE MOMENT YOU KNEW HE/SHE WAS THE ONE:

Devin: “We were in a long distance

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Stanley Babb STANLO PHOTOGRAPHY www.stanlophotography.com

part. We’ve had some mishaps in dealing with unreliable vendors - make sure you get

plenty of references before giving a deposit. In spite of this, the overall experience has been wonderful and we’re just savoring every moment." WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST? " We are looking forward to the moment we both say “I Do” while having all of our close

family and friends there as witnesses; watching us enter into matrimony."


friends to lovers B R I T TA N Y + DEMETRIE Chicago, IL

BRIDE-TO-BE: GROOM-TO-BE:

Brittany Hall

Demetrie Sezibera

OCCUPATIONS:

Pharmacists

WEDDING DATE:

May 25, 2019

Audubon Tea Room in New Orleans, LA

WEDDING LOCATION:


HOW THEY MET + THE PROPOSAL:

"Demetrie and I met in 2014 during our college of pharmacy interviews at Chicago State University. We both were accepted. When school started we instantly became close friends. As time passed we realized that we wanted to be more than friends. We studied together, motivated each other, and graduated together on May 9th of 2018 as Doctors of Pharmacy. During the summer of 2017 we were excited to f ind out we would be expecting a baby girl come Christmas time. Demetrie decided to propose at the closing of our baby shower in front of all our family and friends."


THE ENGAGEMENT SESSION.

We chose 3 looks. I would describe the f irst look as chic and sexy. In the f irst look we wanted to capture the essence of Chicago, the city in which we met and fell in love. In the second look, we wanted to embody black excellence and black love. For our last look, we included our beautiful baby girl. For this look we just wanted express the love we have for each other, but most importantly the love we have for our daughter.

WHAT DID YOU DO ON YOUR FIRST DATE? We went out for Chinese food,

which is still one our favorite things to do.

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE THING TO DO AS A COUPLE? We enjoy

traveling. We love spending time with our daughter.


HOW HAS WEDDING PLANNING BEEN SO FAR? So far the wedding

planning is going great. We elected to get a wedding planner, which has made planning a lot easier.

TELL US WHAT YOU'RE LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST ON THE WEDDING DAY. We are looking forward

to just being happy and enjoying ourselves with family & friends as we enter a new chapter in our lives.

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Shagari Jackson MOSAIC BY MG www.mosaicbymg.com

WEDDING PLANNER: VAR Events MAKEUP: Kelly Phillips HAIR: Jacinta Appleton


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E N G AG E M E N T S

desert romance C H A R L Y E + S TA N L E Y Odessa, Texas

BRIDE-TO-BE:

Charlye Nichols

GROOM-TO-BE:

Stanley Egbo

Multi-Family Property Management & Oil/Gas Logistics

OCCUPATIONS:

WEDDING DATE:

March 16, 2019

WEDDING LOCATION:

Houston, Texas


E N G AG E M E N T S


THE PROPOSAL "We went to Miami for Charlye’s Birthday, with a large group of friends and had the time of our life! The icing on the cake was when Stanley set up a beautiful dinner at The Versace Mansion and got down on one knee to propose in front of all our friends. It was absolutely perfect! " THE ENGAGEMENT SESSION: " We wanted our engagement session to embody our style and

personalities. We reached out to the photographer and asked for ideas about a unique shoot that would capture the romance and power we have as a couple. The theme was desert romance and black elegance." FIRST DATE?

"We went to an Italian Restaurant for dinner and talked until they turned off the lights.” FAVORITE THING TO DO AS A COUPLE:

We love to party and have a good time! We love to feel “Forever Young! HOW HAS WEDDING PLANNING BEEN SO FAR?

"Wedding Planning has been fun, except the guest list! We have the best planner, so she helps us iron out the details. We are doing our best to have fun with the planning process." WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST ON THE WEDDING DAY?

"We are looking forward to bringing our families together and joining as one. Our journey together is only beginning and we are so excited to enter this new chapter together, loving and

WEDDING PLANNER Chioma Nwogu Johnson DURE EVENTS www.dureevents.com

growing with each other along the way." PHOTOGRAPHER: Marcus Owens HAIRSTYLIST: Erica McCamey MAKEUP: Fachon Watson MEN’S WARDROBE: Phillip Adesulu WOMEN’S WARDROBE: Monica Severino and Victoria Obayemi


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#kissingtokindred ZAHNA + DERRICK Cleveland,Ohio

BRIDE-TO-BE: GROOM-TO-BE:

Zahna Medley Derrick Kindred

WEDDING DATE:

March 2, 2019

WEDDING LOCATION:

Dallas, Texas


HOW THEY MET: "Derrick and I both met at Texas Christian University. I played for the Women’s basketball team, and he played for the football team. With us both being student athletes we had mutual friends and began to hang out together even more, but it wasn’t until our sophomore year that we had started dating. We dated for the remainder of College, and after college we were both blessed to play professionally! Derrick went to the NFL and I had played overseas. After deciding to retire from basketball, I returned to the states and was fortunate enough to use my degree in f inance from TCU in f inding a corporate job. At this point, I was in Dallas and Derrick was in Cleveland playing for the Browns. We maintained a long distance relationship during the NFL season and he would come back to live in Dallas during the off season!"

THE PROPOSAL: "It was the weekend before he was heading back to Cleveland for training camp. He told me he wanted to go out to dinner with one of his former teammates and his f iancé for a nice dinner at Ruth Chris to celebrate the start of another season. When we arrived I walked to the back of the restaurant and entered into a room full of friends and family who have always been a part of our relationship. As I soon as we walked in he immediately got down on one knee and it was a wrap!" WHAT DID YOU DO ON YOUR FIRST DATE? "Our f irst date was at a car wash. Derrick loves cars and has an obsession about keeping them clean so as a


E N G AG E M E N T S

romantic gesture he offered to wash my car for Valentine’s Day, and

gotten a lot of the details worked out, and now we are just focusing

then later that night we went to Chili’s and it is now our go-to spot

on the smaller details! A lot of our thanks go to our wedding

wherever we are!"

planner, Hannah Kearny, owner of Wine Cup Events in the DallasFort Worth metroplex. I’d recommend her to anyone! She has

DESCRIBE YOUR ENGAGEMENT SESSION:

honestly made this process seemingly effortless to where all we

"It was surreal. I feel like at that moment it really hit the both of

need to focus on is the day of the wedding and anticipating our big

us that this was happening, the commitment and journey that we

moment!"

have had as a couple was paying off. We wore our wedding colors, which ironically enough, are the same colors as our alumni, TCU.

WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST?

It was really easy to get into it and the pictures turned out better

"Celebrating our love and the start of our lives together as one as we

than expected, we wanted to use these pictures for our invitations

are surrounded by all of our friends and family, and f inally sealing

for our wedding, but we plan to do a second engagement session at

the deal by #KissingToKindred!."

our former college because we really feel like TCU was a stepping stone for the both of us to reach our goals. Being people of color, and being able to display the hard work and effort it took in both our career paths and in our relationship to be where we are at now, makes an undeniably beautiful love story that we are looking forward for people to see!"

View more Coterie Member profiles on our website - vendors.munaluchibridal.com

WHAT'S YOUR FAVORITE THING TO DO AS A COUPLE? "Derrick and I are both very active people and in general we love to do different things. We love going to the movies, theme parks, the zoo & aquarium and anything exciting!" HOW HAS WEDDING PLANNING BEEN SO FAR? "The wedding planning has been awesome! Thankfully we have

PHOTOGRAPHY Omari Souza JAZZY MAE PHOTOGRAPHY www.jazzymaephotography.com


JAZZYMAEPHOTOGRAPHY.COM   MUNALUCHI BRIDE

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soul mates

R U H A M A + B I N YA M Golden Gardens Park & A rooftop at Pier 66, Seattle, WA

WEDDING DATE:

May 2019

WEDDING LOCATION: OCCUPATIONS:

Denver

Nurse & Car Rental Agent

HOW THEY MET: "Binyam and I initially saw each other at

a housewarming party I attended with a friend who's husband worked with Binyam. After that we kept seeing each other at different events (and both were clearly attracted to and curious about the other), but we didn't meet off icially until after running into each other on a night out in downtown Denver. After asking others about me for months, he f inally asked me for my number that night."


E N G AG E M E N T S

THE PROPOSAL:

"I planned a surprise 30th birthday trip for Binyam. He was unaware of the location of the trip and the fact that his closest friends would also be joining us at our destination, Cancun, MX. During this trip, on the last night with our friends, we had a nice group dinner at Ruth's Chris at which Binyam gave a thank you speech and a toast to me for planning the trip and being an amazing girlfriend, and before I knew it he was on his knee proposing, and I was bawling and in complete SHOCK. Best day EVER." THE ENGAGEMENT SESSION...

"Our engagement shoot ended up being very fun! Binyam is NOT a pictures kinda person, and he was def initely a little uncomfortable and awkward at f irst because we were constantly surrounded by an audience, but our photographer made us so comfortable and we really just had fun getting dressed up and hanging out in this way that is unusual for us."


E N G AG E M E N T S

WHAT DID YOU DO ON YOUR FIRST DATE?

"Our f irst date was at Benihana followed by some drinks at a nearby sports bar. Honestly it was such a perfect date, I remember having so much fun and feeling instantly comfortable it almost scared me how quickly we connected." FAVORITE THING(S) TO DO AS A COUPLE?

"This is going to sound silly, but we are OBSESSED with Survivor, so we love watching that together - and after that, probably trying new restaurants." HOW HAS WEDDING PLANNING BEEN SO FAR?

"Honestly, a headache. It has been really diff icult f inding a venue we love, f iguring out a budget, and also making our families happy, but we are constantly reminding ourselves to enjoy the process and this season of our life because it’s a blessing that will only happen once, so we don't want to forget the big picture here." WHAT ARE YOU LOOKING FORWARD TO MOST ON THE WEDDING DAY?

"Finally being husband and wife! And getting to celebrate our love with the people we love the most, who have supported us throughout our relationship. PHOTOGRAPHER: Olga Andreyanova Photog raphy

PHOTOGRAPHER Tristan Barrocks FELICITY MOMENTS www.felicitymoments.ca


W EDDING IDEAS Inspired by charming Chinoiserie designs Photographed by Unique2Chic Photography


D E S T I N AT I O N S


O

ut of Europe’s obsession with the far east, Chinoiserie was born, and the charming designs are finding their way into wedding and event design. In this inspiration shoot, Elizabeth Davis partnered with an amazing team of Atlanta professionals to produce a Chinoiserie inspired shoot. The design team used the tableware and stationery to truly highlight the intricate 17th century designs, while keeping things modern and romantic. Muted hues of pink, blue and beige were starkly juxtaposed with the intricate tableware patterns and served as a unique way to incorporate "something blue."


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View more Coterie Member profiles on our website - vendors.munaluchibridal.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Elizabeth Davis UNIQUE2CHIC PHOTOGRAPHY www.unique2chicphotography.com

GOWN DESIGNER Jaye Applewaite JAYE APPLEWAITE www.jayeapplewaite.com

v e n do r s PHOTOGRAPHER: Unique2Chic

Photography Events

PLANNER: Jade

BRIDAL STYLIST: The

Stylist

STATIONERY:

Lee

Wedding

Wood And

Grace VENUE: Atlanta History Center

JEWELRY: Misayo

House

Miguel Wilson Collection GOWN: Jaye

Applewaite

FLORIST:

Unique Floral Expressions ARTIST:

Event Rentals Lameeka

HAIR:

RENTALS: Crush

VIDEOGRAPHY:

Contantine Lens Curtis

MAKEUP

Erica Bogart Beauty

It's Queen Harper

TUX:

BRIDAL

CAKE: Cakes

MODELS: Indya

The By

and Greg

PRODUCTION ASSISTANT: Bliss

Culture Photos


WEDDING PLANNING & FLORAL DESIGN Maryland • Washington, DC • Virginia (703) 991-1951 • info@allrelevents.com • www.allrelevents.com


Dare to be different make it yyour day. do it yyour way TheDCEventPlanner.com & Beyond... The DIFFERENCE you’re looking for.


CO N T E N T S


NATHALIE + JESSE I P S W I C H , M A S S AC H U S E T T S M AY 2 6 , 2 0 1 8 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y R u d y & Ma r t a P h o t o g ra p hy

Text by Samuel Naumick

I

n her last year of study as a Physical Therapist, Nathalie

Nathalie and Jesse’s wedding was classic and romantic, beginning

decided it was time to get back into the dating scene. She

with a ceremony at the First Church of Ipswich – situated on

gave online dating a try and within a couple of weeks received

a little hill in the center of town, and adorned with beautiful

a message from who would end up being her future husband.

stained glass window features. Nathalie was gorgeous in a classic

Nathalie and Jessie messaged back and forth a few times,

ivory gown by Maggie Sottero; the second dress she tried during

intrigued enough to exchange numbers. After getting to know

her wedding shopping experience - selected and approved by both

each other further over the phone they decided it was time for a

her mother and father. After being forever declared husband and

f irst date. It was an evening that set them on the path of together

wife, Nathalie and Jesse continued on to their reception, hosted

forever. In Nathalie’s words, “after three hours and a great deal

at the Mansion on Turner Hill. The reception incorporated

of playful conversation and f lirtation, two lives were changed for

Nathalie’s Haitian culture into the evening’s playlist, bringing

the better…”

everyone to the dance f loor. Natalie fondly remembers how, “the love just poured out of everyone and every moment of our

For Jesse, that f irst date was so convincing that he “knew right

wedding…”

away” Nathalie would end up being the one. In his words, “Nathalie is the most genuine person I’ve ever met. She was

Best Memories: "The look of pure happiness on our parents

engaging, honest, caring and thoughtful…” And so the day came

faces. Jesse and I did a majority of the planning for the wedding

when he felt it was time to ask for her hand in marriage. Now

and our parents were there to help whenever needed. Though

living in Florida they were scheduled to return to their home

everyone offered to help, we really just wanted to surprise

state of Massachusetts for an annual physical therapy conference

everyone, especially our parents, with all the details of our day.

in Boston. Walking back to the car after shopping and brunch on

They were absolutely shocked with how beautiful everything

Newbury Street, they passed by the Boston Public Library where

turned out. We caught glimpses of their faces all night and they

Nathalie commented on how she dreamt of having her wedding

were grinning ear to ear every minute. It’s been a couple months

there. With his moment presented, Jesse dropped to one knee

since the wedding and they are still reliving the moments. Our

and replied, “well, at least can we have our engagement here?”

wedding day was about bringing immediate and extended family

So caught up in the excitement of the moment, Nathalie almost

and friends together for a night of love, fun, and party. We know

pushed him over out of shock and disbelief before saying yes.

we succeeded."


Advice for Engaged Couples: "Go to City Hall! Just Kidding! We decided to do a f irst look, group photos before the ceremony, and a receiving line in the church directly after the ceremony. With the help of our wedding planner Joel Parra, it was totally worth it and worked out great. We were on time for the ceremony and this allowed our wedding party and us to enjoy the cocktail hour. We spent meaningful time with our guests without feeling rushed or overwhelmed."

Quick Facts From The Bride FAVORITE ITEM ON MENU:

Crab stuffed Sole and Duck Breast - our two entree choices. As foodies, we wanted to push our guests outside their comfort zone, and force them to try new things! Both dishes were outstanding, as we chose one of each for our table and shared. WEDDING PARTY GIFTS:

Bridesmaids: A gift bag that included robes for the wedding day, canvas makeup bags with their names, and earrings and necklace sets for the wedding day. Groomsmen: A combined f lask & cigar holder with Padron cigars and 4 oz bottles of Southern Comfort and Remy Martin. The f lask/cigar holders were personalized with their initials. FIRST DANCE SONG : ​

"So In Love" by Curtis Mayf ield. We are old souls and just love artists and songs from this era. We picked our “f irst dance” song about a year before the wedding day.

VENDORS BRIDE'S DRESS:

Marianne by Magg ie Sottero

Memories Bridal Shop Memories Bridal Shop BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: CAKES/DESSERTS: VENUE:

BRIDAL SALON:

BRIDE’S HEADPIECE AND/OR VEIL: BRIDE'S SHOES:

Badgley Mischka - Tatum Sandal

Bari Jay - from Precious Memories Bridal Shop

Jenny's Cakes

CATERING:

First Church in Ipswich

Vinwood Caterers

OFFICIANT:

DJ Max Baun w/ C-Zone Music

EVENT PLANNER:

Joel Parra w/ Just Planned Events

Carol Travers w/The Mansion on Turner Hill Calvin Klein HAIR:

GROOMSMEN ATTIRE:

Kersie Millien

Turner Hill

GROOM'S ATTIRE:

MAKEUP:

RECEPTION VENUE:

at Turner Hill

LIGHTING:

Visage1

Hugo Boss

Fleur Events

Molly Anne

GROOM’S SHOES:

Black by Vera Wang & Jos A. Bank

C-Zone Music

PHOTOGRAPHY:

LINENS:

The Golf Club at

Rudy & Marta Photog raphy RENTALS:

The Golf Club

Save The Dates - New and Blue; Wedding

Invitations & Thank You Cards - Minted NUMBERS:

VENUE COORDINATOR:

FLORALS:

The Mansion on Turner Hill

STATIONERY:

CEREMONY

Reverend Dr. Rebecca Pugh

ENTERTAINMENT:

McGill w/Fleur Events

Precious

Precious

ESCORT CARDS & TABLE

PROGRAMS & SIGNAGE:

Make Your Marq Videog raphy

Joel Parra

VIDEOGRAPHY:


CO N T E N T S


JESSICA + RANDOLPH BALTIMORE MUSEUM OF ART

M AY 2 5 , 2 0 1 8 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y S t a n l o P h o t o g ra p hy

Text by Samuel Naumick

T

hough they were friends on Facebook, Jessica and

and the other was recording him. As they got closer the

Randolph weren’t off icially introduced until crossing

music changed to “All of Me” by John Legend, and Jessica

paths at a mutual friend’s barbecue. Jessica admired his quiet

heard someone calling out her name. She turned to look and

wittiness, recalling how he “always knew the right things

found ten of their friends smiling at her. When she turned

to say.” Their connection that evening was immediate.

back to Randolph he was on one knee asking her to spend

Randolph knew he had to take his “shot right away” that

the rest of their lives together as husband and wife.

night, and quickly procured some f lowers for her as they went on a romantic walk under the stars. Jessica remembers

Their wedding took place at the beautiful Baltimore

it as “one of the best evenings of my life.”

Museum of Art, and had a whimsical, classic romance style. Jessica was gorgeous in a f it and f lair Eve of Milady

It wouldn’t be long before they both began to realize they

dress, with hand-beaded lace detail. Through music

were in the presence of “the one,” that person in which

they incorporated Ghanaian and West African heritage,

your soul is mirrored. They never grew tired of each others

culminating in an unforgettable wedding experience.

company, could openly talk about anything, and not only had they discovered a romantic partner in the other but also a best friend. Every aspect of their relationship felt meant to be, and soon Randolph was planning their perfect proposal… It was a few days before Christmas of 2016 when Randolph told Jessica that they were invited to his off ice holiday dinner

Best Memories: The vows, dancing and our bridal party. We had so much fun! Advice for Engaged Couples:

party at the National Harbor, Maryland. Before entering the

Please do not get too engrossed in the details that you forget

host hotel, Randolph invited Jessica for a ride on the ferris

the main reason you are getting married! Remember that

wheel. While enjoying the lovely views Randolph began

your wedding day is when you get to commit to spending

telling Jessica how much she meant to him and how thankful

the rest of your life with the person that you love and that's

he was to have her in his life. On the walk to the hotel Jessica

all that really matters. Favorite Item on Menu: The crawf ish

recognized two of their friends by a large Christmas tree

fritters, they were so good!

display. One of them was playing Christmas music on a piano


Quick Facts From The Bride WEDDING PARTY GIFTS:

The bridesmaids got DW home scented candles, bath bombs, robes and heeled sandals. The groomsmen's gifts were sentimental; RJ gave them pictures of fun times they had together and custom shot glasses. FIRST DANCE SONG:

“Beyond” by Leon Bridges ADVICE FOR BRIDES:

Even though wedding planning can be arduous, please make sure you enjoy it, take breaks when you can and don't let it consume you. Try to purchase as much as you can during the off season months and always keep a spreadsheet of your spending so you can track your spending.


View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Stanley Babb STANLO PHOTOGRAPHY www.stanlophotography.com

VENDORS BRIDE'S DRESS: BRIDAL SALON:

Eve of Milady

Kleinfeld Bridal Unique berry accessories

BRIDE’S HEADPIECE AND/OR VEIL: BRIDE'S EARRINGS:

Lovebird , Kleinfeld Bridal

BRIDE'S SHOES:

Be mine

BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: CAKES/DESSERTS: CATERING: CEREMONY VENUE:

Jarlo London

Mon Delice

Putting it on the Ritz Catering

Sculpture Garden, Baltimore Museum of Art

EVENT DECOR/DESIGN:

Lush Couture Events

ENTERTAINMENT: EVENT PLANNER: FLORALS:

DJ KO

Lush Couture Events

La Fleur Du Jour

GROOM'S ATTIRE: GROOMSMEN ATTIRE:

Uniqueberry Hairs

HAIR: LIGHTING:

Sarar

Connassieur Paris

DJ KO and Baltimore Museum of Art LINENS:

MAKEUP:

Putting on the Ritz

Lonicely (Nicely Faces)

PHOTOGRAPHY: RECEPTION VENUE:

Stanlo Photog raphy

Fox court, Baltimore Museum of Art

RENTALS: STATIONERY: VIDEOGRAPHY:

Lush Couture Events Riley and Grey/ Minted.

Geyson Alvarenga Videog raphy


REAL WEDDINGS

VALERIE + DEVON H O U S TO N , T E X A S M AY 2 5 , 2 0 1 8 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y J u l i a A rc e r i

Text by Samuel Naumick

T

hough Valerie and Devon went to the same

our journey together and how much we’ve grown,

University, and knew of each other, it wasn’t

and how happy he is with our life together…it was the

until years after graduating that they would f inally

sweetest and most endearing way to propose.”

meet. At the insistence of a mutual friend who thought they would make the perfect couple, they

Valerie and Devon’s wedding was, for their guests, a

agreed to meet up. Initially their plans to get together

surprise ceremony within a cocktail styled engagement

fell through several times until f inally at a friend’s

party. The wedding style was “elegant simplistic chic”

birthday party their paths crossed. According to

hosted at the beautiful Houston Towers. The event

Valerie they “didn’t ride off into the sunset” that day.

menu ref lected both the bride and groom’s cultural

That moment wouldn’t take place for sometime, until

backgrounds of traditional Southern and Caribbean

a friend’s wedding party would once again bring them

cuisines. Valerie was gorgeous in a custom Karen Sosa

together. This time the sparks f lew and their shared

gown, classic white crepe long sleeve with shimmer

magnetism was palpable. In Valerie’s words, “it was

beaded fringe back. Complimented with her late

at this party where our journey began. Devon and I

mother’s diamond ring, tennis bracelet and teardrop

talked and laughed the whole night…” Their off icial

earrings, in honor of her memory. Her Groom was

f irst date came a week later and they’ve remained

sharp and sophisticated in a plush, navy blue, velvet

inseparable ever since.

tuxedo.

It wouldn’t be long before Devon began to realize

Best Memories:

Valerie was “the one” and so planned their perfect proposal, taking place January of this year in gorgeous Marrakech, Morocco. It was a beautiful morning at the luxurious La Mamounia Hotel, where Devon suggested they get dressed to take some pictures around the grounds to document the trip. Not at all suspecting a proposal on this trip, Valerie agreed and they made their way down to the lobby. A security guard unlocked a particularly photogenic courtyard that would make the perfect backdrop. Handing the camera to the security guard, Devon asked if he could take a few pictures of Valerie and himself. After a few images Valerie looked towards Devon and found him looking back up at her from one knee. Valerie fondly recalls how, “he beautifully reminded me of

"Our wedding was basically a "pop up" wedding. We invited our guests to a cocktail style engagement party and surprised them with a ceremony mid-way through the party. A lot of our friends from college and friends we've gained over the years who also knew each other were guests at the party so it very much felt like a college reunion of sorts. Some people suspected what was going down and others were happily surprised at the transition from a full-on party with food, drinks and music, to a sacred exchange of vows...and back to a party! Honestly one of the best nights of our lives and we had so much fun sharing the experience with everyone who attended. Sorry to the folks who left the party early and missed the vows." - Valerie


Advice for Engaged Couples: "There are no rules! You can totally do your wedding however you want to do it and not break the bank doing so. If you wanted to do a pool party and get married in your swimsuit because that's what you want, do it. I'm sure everyone would have way more fun if they didn't have to buy a wedding outf it and would still have a great time and you will be less stressed about who to invite, what to wear, and all the other formalities that unnecessarily overwhelm people. Your guests will come and will be there for you. Not because of what you wore or what venue you selected, or the f lower arrangements or the party favors. They will remember the fun and the laughs, not the stuff in between that brides worry about. Do not stress or get caught up in the weeds of the details because no one will remember or care about all of that anyway. The decisions we made were based solely on what type of experience and memory we wanted for us, not traditions. We did not have bridesmaids or groomsmen [or] f irst dances. [M]y fathers didn't walk me down the aisle and we didn't have a 300 guest seated dinner reception or a wedding cake. We didn't even do formal invitations...I emailed our guests a snapshot of an invitation I designed online. We felt zero pressure to include or do everything by the book or spend money on things that are forgettable. The only time I vacillated on our approach was when I couldn't decide between acrylic or real champagne glasses. I went with the former because it was smart and made sense and no one really cares about the material of the glass, they care about what's in the glass! So do your wedding on your own terms and do not be concerned with perception or traditions. We had a party with a tiny snippet of a ceremony and it was the most fun I'd had at a "wedding" in a long time. We like to party and that's what we did." - Valerie

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View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

EVENT PLANNER Darryl Wilson D'CONCIERGE EVENTS www.dconciergeweddings.com

VENDORS BRIDE'S DRESS:

Badgley Mischka

Karen Sosa

BRIDE'S SHOES:

CAKES/DESSERTS:

Donut Holes

from Duck Donuts; White Chocolate Bread Pudding from Danton's Seafood; Chocolate and Raspberry Mousse Shots from Bud's Pitmaster BBQ CATERING:

Bud's Pitmaster BBQ & Cool Runnings

CEREMONY VENUE: DESIGN:

Houston Towers

D'Concierge Events

Flash Gordon Parks Wilson ATTIRE:

FLORALS:

HAIR:

LIGHTING:

D'Concierge Events du Jour Studio RENTALS:

EVENT PLANNER:

Keisha's Kreations

Suit Supply

Hair Studios

EVENT DECOR/

ENTERTAINMENT:

DJ

Darryl

GROOM'S

Chara Bennet of Canvas Lion's Heart LINENS: Noe Flores of Color

MAKEUP:

PHOTOGRAPHY:

D'Concierge Events

Julia Arceri

VIDEOGRAPHY:

Kreatives

Klasik


RIA + KEVOL

G R A N D C AY M A N , C AY M A N I S L A N D S APRIL 28, 2018 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y C h a d Mu n ro

Text by Samuel Naumick

R

ia and Kevol’s love story began at a birthday party being promoted by a colleague of Ria’s who invited her along. Having an early morning f light for work, Ria and her colleague brought their luggage with them to leave for the airport directly from the event venue. They partied well into the night, f inally leaving around three in the morning. When collecting their luggage from the venue’s off ice where it was stored, a slight “confrontation” occurred between the person whose birthday it was. Angrily he told Ria and her colleague to collect their belongings and go, but not before commenting on how attractive he thought Ria was – who simply rolled her eyes and walked on… Fast forward three months, Ria was promoting a culinary event at an employer’s restaurant where, in her words, “a handsome chef walks in and I was smitten.” Kevol, the “handsome chef,” was also smitten, creating excuses to come back to Ria’s off ice all day, even though the event menu only contained f ive items. Unable to deny his instincts, Kevol asked Ria out on a date before the opportunity was lost. Within a month they “fell head over heels in love” and about six weeks into their relationship while at dinner with friends. One of Kevol’s friends showed Ria a picture from Kevol’s birthday party, and instantly she recognized Kevol as the guy from the confrontation three months prior. If you’d told either of them on that initial evening that they had just met the love of their lives, they may not have believed it. With the assistance of Ria’s mother and cousin, Kevol was able to plan their perfect proposal. Wanting to ensure the element of surprise while having both of their families present, they were able to plan the proposal to occur during the 25th birthday party of Ria’s cousin, which also coincided with the anniversary of Ria and Kevol’s meeting. On the arrival of the big day, everything went as planned, and when the dinner drew to an end,

Ria’s mother asked everyone at their table to say a few words to Ria’s cousin in honor of her birthday. Kevol spoke last, giving the signal to his family, friends, and videographer that the big moment was at hand. Looking into the eyes of his soulmate, Kevol proclaimed his love for Ria, got down on one knee, and asked her to spend the rest of their lives together as husband and wife. Ria and Kevol’s wedding took place on April 28th in gorgeous Grand Cayman, Cayman Islands. Through an extensive process, Ria was able to enlist the service of her Aunt from Trinidad to off iciate the ceremony. As Ria fondly recalls, “the prayer that she prayed over my husband and I during the ceremony had everyone in awe and tears.” The Bride was stunning in an elegant, f loral lace Calla Blanche gown with deep V neck and back, a trumpet skirt, and scallop edged train – complete with a Maggie Sottero cathedral veil. Best Memories: "My best memory of my wedding was my bridal party and our entrance. My bridal party consisted of 26 people. Needless to say, it was absolutely impossible to get everyone to practice anything. I told everyone that we were just going to wing it, and wing it we did! Each couple selected a song to enter the reception. The songs selected were as diverse as my bridal party. As each bridal couple entered, all you heard was a sea of people cheering as if they were at a concert. When my husband and I entered, the DJ dropped the hottest reggae/ dancehall song in rotation. When we heard the song my husband, me and my 6th month belly threw down! The bridal party was so excited and the DJ so hyped that a “dance battle” ensued. Yeah you heard right, my wedding started with an impromptu dance battle. It was all you can imagine and then some."

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VENDORS BRIDE’S DRESS: Calla Blanche Bridal Salon: Bridal Reflections BRIDE’S HEADPIECE AND/OR VEIL: Magg ie Sottero BRIDE’S SHOES: Badgley Mischka BRIDESMAIDS DRESSES: Asos CAKES/DESSERTS: Lori-Ann Foley of The Cake Studios GRAND CAYMAN CATERING: Welly’s Cool Spot & Mise en Place GRAND Cayman BAR SERVICES: Bar Metrics CEREMONY VENUE: Sunset Bay, Grand Cayman EVENT DECOR/DESIGNER: Clinton A. Hunter of Versona Events International, Grand Cayman ENTERTAINMENT: Yoan Tamayo -Violinist and Michael Lemay - Steel Pan EVENT PLANNER: Clinton A. Hunter of Versona Events International, Grand Cayman FLORALS: Versona Events International, Grand Cayman GROOM’S ATTIRE: Rex B Spoke Clothing GROOMSMEN ATTIRE: Rex B Spoke Clothing HAIR: Ruthanna Young - Renaissance Salon and Spa LIGHTING: Versona Events International, Grand Cayman LINENS: Versona Events International, Grand Cayman MAKEUP: Patrick Williams, Beauty by P.Willis.Jr & Renaissance Salon and Spa PHOTOGRAPHY: Chad Munro - Picture This Studios, Hason Castell - Pikture Perfect, NYC, Dale Lamar RECEPTION VENUE: Sunset Bay, Cayman Islands RENTALS: Versona Events International, Grand Cayman STATIONERY: Opal A. Lynch - Graphic Desig ner, NYC and Shanda T. Hunter of Versona Studio Grand Cayman VIDEOGRAPHY: Cortez Vernon Vernon Weddings and Dale Lamar


SHELTON + LENNARD H O U S TO N , T E X A S AU G U S T 1 1 , 2 0 1 8 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y D a n i e l T. D a v i s

Text by Samuel Naumick

S

helton and Lennard f irst met over f ifteen years

had taken a knee, engagement ring in hand, asking

ago at church, when both joined the Church’s

once again, “will you marry me?”

Greek Ministry. They quickly became friends, but it wouldn’t be until a f irst Friday event in 2010 when

Shelton and Lennard were joined together forever

“the sparks really started.” They talked, laughed and

as a married couple in Houston, Texas, surrounded

danced late into the night, and from that evening

by loving family and friends. Their wedding was

on their relationship continuously evolved from

“romantic eclectic with a masculine f lair,” and

friendship into love and romance. As their love grew

featured elements of New Orleans culture, expressed

stronger, Lennard soon realized that in Shelton he

in stylized umbrellas, masks, and handkerchiefs,

had discovered “the One.” In Lennard’s words, “the

as well as in music with a Second Line reception

moment I realized I stopped thinking ‘I’ and was

entrance. Shelton and Lennard were sophisticatedly

always thinking ‘we,’” was the moment he knew it was

handsome in custom tuxedos inline with the overall

meant to be.

romantic blue color scheme.

Finding the perfect moment to make it forever

Best Memories:

occurred on New Year’s Eve of 2016 at the stroke of midnight. As in previous years, Shelton and Lennard decided to attend a New Year’s Eve party with some of their close friends. Instead of their traditional midnight kiss, just as the new year was about to ring in, Lennard handed a pre-typed letter to Shelton. The letter was a romantic expression of love, encapsulating his feelings for his soulmate. Shelton reached the second page and read the words, “will you marry me.” Completely stunned he turned towards Lennard who

"Our wedding was the happiest day of our lives. Although there are so many memorable highlights of the night, I think our best memory would be when we opened the doors to see all of our family and friends there to support our union. A close second would be the Reception 1st reveal where we saw our vision come to life with the help of our Wedding Planner, Events with Darrell."


View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

EVENT PLANNER Darrell Colone EVENTS WITH DARRELL www.eventswithdarrell.com

MONOGRAMS Ndidi & Folasayo Ayoola ODA CREATIVE www.odacreative.com

VENDORS CAKES/DESSERTS:

Wedding Cakes by Tammy Allen

DESIGN/LINENS/RENTALS:

Stylings

Flora Eventi

GROOMSMEN ATTIRE:

PHOTOGRAPHY: OFFICIANT:

ENTERTAINMENT/DJ:

Men’s Wearhouse

DJ Sly Fox

GROOMSMAID HAIR:

Daniel T Davis Photog raphy

Pastah Freedom Gulley

CEREMONY/RECEPTION VENUE + CATERING:

STATIONERY:

GROOMS CAKES:

EVENT PLANNER:

Ayeola Davis

Mag net Street

Cats Cakery

LIGHTING:

Oda Creative

Harper and Darious McGowan

JL Studioz

EVENT DECOR/

GROOM’S ATTIRE:

S.B.R. Entertainment

VIDEOGRAPHY:

MONOGRAM:

Bayou City Event Center

Events with Darrell

BOW TIES:

MAKEUP:

Olympus

Ziera Idlebird

Well Groomed Man

MARDI GRAS MASKS AND UMBRELLA:

Amanda


Luxury Invitations and Fine Stationery 

              

ODACREATIVE

You’re Standing Out.        Â?



 

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WEDDING IDEAS

WE DDING IDEAS Inspired by the portrait work of Kehinde Wiley. Photographed by An Endless Pursuit Photography


The inspiration... "Kehinde really inspires me as an artist. He takes the boundaries, the stereotypes of black culture, and places them in this gorgeous, colorful setting, usually involving ornate floral elements wrapped around his subjects. His clever theme of painting African Americans in historical contexts they would never otherwise be represented in intrigues me, such as his American, born 1977 piece. It shows a black man in the same pose as a Napoleon Bonaparte painting, ready to lead an army. I love it."

- Sugar Taylor of Taylor + Hov Events

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REAL WEDDINGS

CREATIVE TEAM PHOTOGRAPHY:

An Endless Pursuit Photog raphy PLANNING, STATIONERY, FLORAL AND DESIGN: Taylor + Hov Events STYLING: Vainglorious Brides

MAKEUP:

Salsabella Artistry VENUE:

HAIR: The

Tudor Place

Hair Wiz

GROOMS JACKET:

CAKE:

Couture Cakes by Sabrina

House of JonLei Atelier

RENTALS:

CAKE CHANDELIER:

Something Vintage Rentals Ten 23 Desig ns


MICRO WEDDINGS

TORI + OLU B R OO K L Y N B OTA N I C G A R D E N JUNE 30, 2018 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y S e q u o y a h D a n i e l

Text by Samuel Naumick

T

ori and Olu’s love story began at a networking event

he turned to face her, and as Tori fondly remembers, he

held for young black professionals, hosted at a

“said incredibly deep, heartfelt, and emotional things about

Brooklyn restaurant. Before even entering the venue, Olu,

me and us and our relationship – now and in the future.”

as if guided by fate, spotted Tori making her way inside.

Presenting her with a ring, Olu then asked Tori to spend the

He immediately knew that she was someone he had to learn

rest of their lives together as husband and wife. For Tori,

more about. Seeking her out inside the restaurant, it was

Olu “made the night 100% magical…”

Tori’s friend who noticed him f irst. Finding him attractive she waved Olu and his friend over to their table, but he only

Tori and Olu were married on June 30th in a beautiful

had eyes for Tori. With Olu’s friend engaging Tori’s friend

garden wedding at Brooklyn Botanic. Their ceremony

in conversation, he was able to focus entirely on getting to

featured a traditional handfasting, using cultural and family

know Tori. Although they spoke only brief ly, it was already

signif icant Kente and Nigerian cloths. Their style was a

evident a magnetism existed between them. In Tori’s words,

whimsical f loral theme of earthy regality. Tori was stunning

“we didn’t chat longer than ten to f ifteen minutes…and

in an embroidered gown, and Olu was dapper in a double-

somehow a vibe we both liked came off…I couldn’t resist

breasted almond suit designed by Brian Alexander Bespoke.

how good he smelled and polite he was…” They exchanged numbers and from that evening on their paths became

Best Memories:

inseparable. Tori: “Seeing Olu for the f irst time! I couldn't have Fast forward to October 5th 2017. Tori received a

imagined what he'd be wearing and he looked absolutely

concerning text message from her best friend Diana. She

stunning. The music playing (‘Best Part’ by Daniel Caesar

claimed to be having some relationship struggles and really

ft. H.E.R.) just amplif ied my emotion so I couldn't help

needed someone to conf ide in. They decided to meet

but start tearing up once we f inally saw each other. When

at Tori’s place after work. When Tori arrived she found

I saw him tearing up too, my heart wouldn't stop racing. I

white and pink balloons and roses throughout the house,

wanted to ball but kept it together because my makeup took

and hanging in the closet was a new dress with shoes and

way too long! It's almost like in that moment we KNEW

matching handbag. Near it was a card instructing her to

it was really happening. All the prep, talks, love shared

meet Olu at the River Café at 8:00. That’s when Diana

and experiences led to that moment. All the emotions just

entered the room to assist her in preparing for the rest of

seemed to want to explode at once, but resulted in a minor

the evening.

implosion. The deepest love I've ever felt in one moment.”

After her preparations were complete, a car was arranged to

Olu: “Saying the vows and professing my love to my wife

escort Tori to Brooklyn. Tori and Olu enjoyed a romantic

under God and in front of all our loved ones truly allowed

dinner together, every moment feeling as special as a f irst

everything to come full circle - the moment that I'd prayed

date. Upon leaving they stopped to take some pictures

for was here. It was a true testament to God's will in our

together by the Brooklyn Bridge. While Tori reviewed the

lives.”

images, Olu bent down to “tie his shoe.” Still on one knee


D E S T I N AT I O N S

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View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

OFFICIANT Roxanne Birchfield MARRIED by REV ROXY www.marriedbyrevroxy.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Sequoyah Daniel SEQUOYAH DANIEL PHOTOGRAPHY www.sequoyahdaniel.com

VENDORS WEDDING DRESS DESIGNER:

Willow by Watters SUIT DESIGNER:

Brian Alexander Bespoke HAT DESIGNER:

Van Huynh of JJ Hat Center HAIR:

Alisha Damon MAKEUP:

Amber Wright-Knight of Amoire Beaute PHOTOGRAPHY:

Sequoyah Daniel OFFICIANT:

Rev Roxy Birchfield of Married by Rev Roxy RINGS:

Lorraine West CEREMONY LOCATION:

Brooklyn Botanic Garden CAR:

Rolls Royce


WE DDING IDEAS Crisp, clean and modern design featuring white lush florals accented with gold. Photographed by Nana Annan Photography


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View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Nana Annan NANA ANNAN PHOTOGRAPHY www.nanaannan.com

GOWN DESIGNER Latasha Hall LILLIE COUTURE www.lilliecouture.com

CREATIVE TEAM PHOTOGRAPHY

Nana Annan

Photog raphy

DESIGNER AND

PLANNER

Platinum By Stacyann

FLORAL DESIGNER

By Stacyann

Platinum

VIDEOGRAPHY

Annan Productions

MENU CARDS

Parchment By Dami DRESS DESIGNER VENUE

Lillie Couturier

Jloft Events

MIRRORED TABLE

Rentals

WEDDING

ACRYLIC GOLD

Evolution Event

CHARGERS, STEMWARE AND

FLATWARE Glam NAPKINS

Party Rentals

Nuage Desig ns Inc

GOLD INFINITY CHAIRS Accent

Decor Rentals WALL

ROUND GRASS

Evolution Event Rentals

DRAPING All

About Events Nyc

FLORAL DISTRIBUTOR Riverdale

Farms

MAKEUP Mandi

Savonette


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W E D DING I D EAS This vibrant stylized shoot takes ultra violet inspiration to the next level. Inspired by a Ceci NY floral print. Photographed by Nana Annan Photography


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The inspiration... "This look was inspired by the "Celine Print" from Ceci Johnson of Ceci New York. Much like all of my sketches, it began with its name on large chart paper on my studio wall followed by days of quiet ref lection. I knew I wanted this look to be a statement piece and for it to showcase design in a different and fresh way. When I envisioned it, I instantly thought of a "dark romance," one that is passionate and f illed with synergy. I wanted it to be reminiscent of the energy you feel with your f irst love and all the emotions that surrounds that f irst experience with your soul mate. The vibrancy and richness of the colors, and the lushness of the centerpieces anchored by the intricate designs on the place settings and charger plates, all featured on a winding glass serpentine table accented with blacks and golds, were used to create that over the top, opulent, dramatic look, which is ideal for the bride that wants a luxurious, extravagant event." - Stacyann of Platinum by Stacyann


View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

PHOTOGRAPHER Nana Annan NANA ANNAN PHOTOGRAPHY www.nanaannan.com

GOWN DESIGNER Latasha Hall LILLIE COUTURE www.lilliecouture.com

CREATIVE TEAM

DESIGNER AND PLANNER

Platinum By Stacyann FLORAL DESIGNER

Platinum By Stacyann PHOTOGRAPHY

Nana Annan Photography VIDEOGRAPHY

Annan Productions STATIONERY

Ceci New York CUSTOM FLORAL DRAPES

Ceci New York

WEDDING DRESS DESIGNER

Lillie Couturier NAPKINS

Nuage Designs Inc VENUE

JLoft Events FURNITURE RENTALS

Glam Party Rentals

FLATWARE AND STEMWARE

Glam Party Rentals

CHARGERS AND PLACE SETTING

Party Rental Ltd

FLORAL DISTRIBUTOR

Riverdale Farms Colgarden Group MAKEUP

Mandi Savonette

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W E D DING I D EAS Representation matters. This inspiration shoot by the design team at RW Events gives a fresh look at the latest high fashion wedding gowns. Plus, a diverse selection of models and romantic floral arrangements provide variety and delight. Photographed by KR Crabb Photography


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The inspiration... "The inspiration for the shoot was stemmed from our love of romantic, high fashion designs. The primary goal was to design a shoot that embodied our core belief for representation and inclusion. We chose Luxmore Grande Estate as the backdrop for the editorial due to its rich textures, character f illed rooms, and natural aesthetic. This allowed our team to design vignettes exaggerating the natural elements." - Tamuel + Dede Cowart of RW Events


View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

DESIGN Tamuel & Dede Cowart RW EVENTS www.rw-brands.com

CREATIVE TEAM DESIGN

RW Events PHOTOGRAPHER

KR Crabb Photography BRIDAL SALON

Solutions Bridal DESIGNER

Netta BenShabu FLORALS

Flowers by Lesley VENUE

Luxmore Grande Estate HAIR/MAKE-UP ARTIST

Jazz It Up Artistry formerly known as Brides be Beautiful


D E S T I N AT I O N S

Gauteng Pretoria

FOLLOW THE FOOTSTEPS OF A GIANT

Explore more at southafrica.net

#WowSouthAfrica  

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RAHIEL + GIDEON JOHANNESBURG, SOUTH AFRICA SEPTEMBER 3, 2018 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y X a v i e r S a e r

Text by Samuel Naumick

W

hile visiting Johannesburg in 2017, Rahiel spotted

started crying and screaming at the top of my lungs out

an African print boutique in the Braamfontein

of shock...no matter how ready I thought I was - nothing

area. Brief ly stopping in she perused the shelves before

prepared me for that breathtaking moment.”

continuing on her way - a seemingly trivial moment that would come to shape the rest of her life. When a few

Like Gideon, Rahiel knew he was “the one” from the

months later, Rahiel was in need of tailoring services

beginning. Being a Christian Minister and seminary

she remembered the boutique shop. After returning, the

graduate, it was important to Rahiel that her husband

owner began making custom clothing for her, and it was

share her passion for faith, and Gideon’s biblical knowledge

during her third visit to the shop when she noticed a “tall,

was impressive. Gideon possessed all the qualities Rahiel

dark and handsome Zambian man” who took her breath

desired in a partner, and even some she hadn’t realized she

away. Gideon, a fashion designer himself, was the youngest

wanted until meeting him. In her words, “as I learned more

brother of the shop owner. The connection between Rahiel

about him and his life story, I came to believe that God had

and Gideon was immediate, and within a few weeks they

been preparing us for one another our entire lives.”

were going on their f irst date. In Rahiel’s words, “it was def initely love at f irst sight.”

Their beautiful Pan-African wedding in Johannesburg honored all sides of their cultural histories while directly

For Gideon, he knew he wanted to marry Rahiel from the

incorporating their Eritrean, Zambian, Black American

f irst date, asking her that evening if her mother would

and South African heritages - all expressed through music,

consent to her “marrying someone who was not Eritrean.”

attire and overall wedding day aesthetics. The wedding

It wasn’t long before they were discussing engagement

weekend began with Rahiel’s Zambian initiation into

ring choices and attending pre-engagement counseling, so

marriage; an all-women gathering led by the Zambian

Rahiel was well aware of a proposal on the horizon - but

elder women of Gideon’s family. During the wedding

when it would occur she had no idea. After Christmas and

ceremony Rahiel was gorgeous in an off-the-shoulder,

New Years passed without a proposal she was even more

rose-gold couture wedding dress with a deep v-neckline and

caught off guard when it f inally took place. On the fourth

mermaid silhouette, incorporating her Eritrean culture in a

of January, while having dinner with a friend at an outdoor

traditional “Albaso” hairstyle, as well as jewelry and henna

restaurant in Johannesburg, Rahiel noticed her friend

art. Being a fashion designer, Gideon designed his own

starring over her shoulder. When Rahiel turned to see what

suite; a soft tweed black and gold-infused suit trimmed

was capturing their attention she saw Gideon, kneeling

with brocade silk. He also designed the bridesmaids’ South

down with a ring in hand. Gideon’s best friend was also

African Xhosa inspired dresses with Cleopatra inspired

present recording the moment as Gideon asked Rahiel for

beaded accessories, and the groomsmen’s African print

her hand in marriage. In Rahiel’s words, “I immediately

accessories.


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advice for engaged couples:

"Don’t forget to prepare for the sustainability of your marriage as you prepare for your big day. I would encourage all engaged couples to have some form of longterm counseling. We did preengagement and premarital counseling that spanned months. These sessions fostered important dialogue and led to lots of homework that helped us learn a lot about one another. About a month prior to our wedding day, we wrote down our shared vision for marriage and discussed our expectations. We went into our marriage with a biblical understanding of the lifelong commitment ahead of us." - Rahiel

vendors BRIDE’S WEDDING DRESS:

Lorenzo Rossi

BRIDE’S “ZURIA":

Workshet Abera

BRIDESMAIDS, GROOM’S & GROOMSMEN ATTIRE:

I Am Deovolente

Sugar ’n Ice

COORDINATOR:

Tasha

CATERING/VENUE:

DECOR AND FLORALS:

Oakfield Farm

Mag nifique Floral Art

Kramer; RMS Audio and Visual

ENTERTAINMENT:

CAKE:

Weddings by

DJ AND SOUND:

Band; Drummer Hastings Nyirenda; Saxophonist Casper Esau II Senait Gebreg zabher and Generale Hair Zone PHOTOGRAPHY:

STYLISTS:

Morgan Wider and Vinniece Williams

MEDIA:

Xavier Saer

MAKEUP:

Couture

PHOTO BOOTH:

The Bride and Armadillo Media

Fascination Pictures

Prince

Femi Koya Afrobeat HAIR:

Tsholo R. of Make-Up

ML Photog raphy

STATIONERY AND DIGITAL

VIDEOGRAPHY:

Daniel McGeer of


ANITHA + MARVIN B O R G H I N V I L L A , D I S CO V E R Y B AY , JA M A I C A

APRIL 21, 2018 P H O TOG R A P H E D B Y Te a m D W P S t u d i o s

Text by Samuel Naumick

I

t all began with a new job in New York City. Moving from Southern California to the city of dreams was a big step for Anitha

that would ultimately change both her and Marvin’s lives. Working together, they quickly became close friends, and it was evident that their connection had the potential for much more. As both of them were already dating other people, those feelings were left unexplored, but not forgotten. Over time their other relationships ended, strengthening their friendship even further. Those unexplored feelings returned to the surface, emanating the sparks of romance. Friendship grew into romance, and from romance blossomed love. In Anitha’s words, “essentially, we grew up together in New York City and are now continuing our adventures as a married couple in San Francisco…” Their journey to marriage began with a proposal on May 19th 2017, in which, according to Anitha, “Marvin went above and beyond,” to accomplish. Thinking it was a birthday surprise, Anitha’s wedding bells didn’t ring suspiciously when a chauffeured car collected her from work. The f irst stop was for a pre-scheduled appointment at the hair salon, followed by a manicure. The last stop was a midtown hotel at which she was escorted to the penthouse suite. Upon opening the door a f loral pathway guided her throughout the suite. Pauses along the path were laid out, each with a card and gift. First was a “super cute outf it,” followed by two watches, signifying how grateful Marvin is for their time together. The third was a scrapbook containing a collection of their “greatest memories together.” Lastly, the f loral path came to an end at the balcony doors, where waiting on the other side was the love of her life… Marvin, looking into the eyes of his soulmate, asked Anitha to spend the rest of her life with him, forever together as husband and wife. For Anitha, “it was the best night, so perfect in every way and a dream come true…”


REAL WEDDING


For Anitha and Marvin, they realized they had met “the one” when, in their words, “being vulnerable and open was so effortless and easy, since the beginning! We quickly became best friends and shared so many experiences as friends, before we off icially started to date. After we started dating and just like every other couple, we shared many ups and downs but because of the bond we created as friends, we were always drawn to each other and had this overwhelming feeling of needing the other in order to feel complete…” Anitha and Marvin’s destination wedding in Jamaica consisted of three ceremonial events; a morning Haldi ceremony at their resort, and Hindu and Christian ceremonies at a private villa. Anitha tried on over f ifty dresses before saying yes to a gorgeous lace gown with blush undertones, as her traditional western wedding dress. On their wedding day, Marvin gifted Anitha pearls and an OM necklace, and Anitha a locket for Marvin – containing a quoted image of him and his father, who sadly passed away some years ago. Best Memories: "Our wedding weekend was the perfect ref lection of who we are – two different cultures coming together. Ultimately, seeing all of our families and friends come together and to experience the traditions and uniqueness of two different backgrounds and cultures coming together was the greatest experience!"


View more Coterie Member profiles on our website. vendors.munaluchibridal.com

FLORIST/LINENS/DECOR/LIGHTING Sadeki Watson CHIC EVENTS JAMAICA www.chic-eventsja.com

vendors BRIDE'S DRESS: Lovely Bride NY BRIDAL SALON: CODE Salon SF BRIDE’S HEADPIECE AND/OR VEIL: Headpiece (Wee Scotty SF) and Veil (Lovely Bride NY) BRIDE'S SHOES: Badgley Mischka CAKES/ DESSERTS: Piece of Cake CATERING: Meliá Braco & Mystic India & Caribbean Pantry CEREMONY VENUE: Borghinvilla, Discovery Bay, Jamaica EVENT DECOR/DESIGN: Chic Events ENTERTAINMENT: Music/MC - Jamaica Wedding DJ, Firework Show by Delwin Rochester, Silver Birds Steel Drum Band EVENT PLANNER: Tejel Patel – Ambiance by Tejel FLORALS: Chic Events GROOM'S ATTIRE: Paul Stuart & Boss HAIR: Gourmet Makeup -Alexis R. LIGHTING/LINENS/RENTALS: Chic Events MAKEUP: Gourmet Makeup – Joni Stone PHOTOGRAPHY: TeamDWP Studios By Dwayne Watkin RECEPTION VENUE: Borghinvilla, Discovery Bay, Jamaica STATIONERY: Shaadi Papery VIDEOGRAPHY: Vellora Productions

HENNA:

Henna Threads – Mark Samuels HOTEL & FRIDAY NIGHT SANGEET: Meliá Braco Village, Rio-Bueno, Jamaica INDIAN CLOTHES & JEWELRY: We bought all our Indian attire in Bangalore, India


OR DE R A C O PY

MunaLuchi's Annual Wedding Industry Conference

THANK YOU! Stay in touch with us in one or more of the following ways:

WEBSITE: www.munaluchibridal.com EMAIL: info@munaluchibridal.com INSTAGRAM: @munaluchibride FACEBOOK: facebook.com/munaluchibridal SNAPCHAT: @munaluchibride PHONE: 888-501-1272

Bermuda

Search for the vendors in this issue and more in our Coterie Wedding Collective at vendors.munaluchibridal.com.

DECEMBER 3-6, 2018

Photo by Dajuan Jones, Lead Photographer for

In His Image Photography MORE DETAILS at WWW.COTERIERETREAT.COM

Profile for Munaluchi

Munaluchi Fall 2018 Issue  

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