Destination Weddings/Real Weddings

Rainy & Romantic Tuscan Destination Wedding

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

As a photographer & wedding editor, I’m often asked by my best girlfriends my best advice when they approach their wedding week. My answer? “Delegate all remaining tasks, turn off your phone & for God’s sake, stop checking the weather forecast.”

When Jack & I got married in Mexico you would think it never crossed my mind to worry about the weather, but in fact, we were arriving just at the end of the Pacific Coast’s Hurricane Season. The rains stopped literally the day we arrived in the Baja, but that didn’t stop me from constantly refreshing my weather app and staring every which way into the horizon for threatening clouds.

But the truth is, our day still would have been wonderful even in the rain – take this Tuscan destination wedding for example! The rain adds a level of romance & intimacy with everyone close together celebrating Simone & Etai. Not to mention, as a photographer, cloud cover means perfect, even lighting all day long for creamy skin tones, score!

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

Our Love Story

Etai works in finance at Deloitte in Philadelphia. Simone is a nurse and works as a lead injector in aesthetics as well as the director of the Med Spa in Philadelphia.

We met on Bumble – the online dating app. I really wasn’t interested in going on another bad date, but when he told me he was Jewish and Israeli (hello – accent!!) I couldn’t resist. We’ve been together every day since unless one of us is traveling.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Dress

I found my dress at M. Elizabeth in Minneapolis, MN. It’s a Berta dress. It had a low plunging neckline made of lace and continued all the way to the bottom of the dress. The back of the dress had the same lace. The headpiece I wore was gorgeous! I wanted something with a little bling because I knew I wanted to have my hair down and relaxed with loose curls. I didn’t want to look like I had just put on a dress and did nothing with my hair, so I found the headpiece at M. Elizabeth (in Minneapolis) to dress up my hairstyle. 
I did wear a veil, it was beautiful and had lace at the borders. It fit perfectly with my lace on my Berta dress.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Groom’s Attire

My gorgeous husband got his suit from Indochino. It was custom made. It was definitely fun for him to be able to pick every little detail of his suit. He waited for spring to hit before choosing his suit because he wanted a light blue suit. He has gorgeous eyes, and it made his eyes so pretty on the day! He wore a light blush tie and a white pocket square. Simply put, he looked so handsome!

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Destination & Venue

We got married in Tuscany. In a beautiful small Tuscan town called Poppi. Our Venue, Borgo Corsignano, is where we got married.

My father is from South Africa, and my Mum is from England. My Fiance is from Israel. We have so many family and friends that live in these three countries, as well as many from Canada and Australia, as well as the USA. I am from Minnesota, but I have lived in North Carolina, North Dakota, New York, and Philadelphia, and he went to college in California. Basically – our friends were scattered throughout the US and we had just made a big move from Minnesota to Philadelphia so we thought. Everyone is going to have to travel somewhere, let’s meet in the middle and get married somewhere fantastic! ITALY!

We picked Borgo Corsignano for a few reasons. 1. It was a little piece of home. Lots of trees, birds, and space to roam around – felt like Minnesota to me. 2. Why we ended up picking Tuscany over Amalfi, we wanted all our guests at one location for 3 days. This was not an option in Amalfi. Plus, it was so chaotic with tourists. I wanted our wedding to be intimate. 3. We wanted a gorgeous Plan B in case it rained. Thank goodness we did that because it rained all three days!

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

Advice on Rainy Weather

We were told that it will definitely be sunny at the end of May in Italy, and even if it does rain, it was rain just for a little bit, and then the sun will shine. Well, it nonstop rained for two days. The welcome dinner and the wedding day. We ended up having to use our ‘Plan B’ options for all three days. Going into the wedding week, my husband and I were visibly upset about it. I cried the first night we were at dinner in Italy. All my visions of our wedding felt like they were being torn away from me. My husband tried to remind me that we picked a venue that had beautiful rainy options. We did it, and I knew that, but it didn’t take away the pain from realizing that all three days we would have to use our ‘Plan B’ options.

Long story short, advice to future brides: If it rains, it rains, it is what it is. You can’t change the weather, but you can change how you react to the weather. On the morning of the wedding, I was happy. Happy that all my family was surrounding me and getting excited about the wedding. The day was perfect. Would I have liked it not to rain? Of course! Do I think it could have been even better had it not rain? Sure. But it doesn’t change the fact that the day of the wedding was still perfect, and the best day of my life! The photos look amazing because we don’t have any bad lighting, so that’s a huge bonus. No one was uncomfortable and hot at the ceremony. It even stopped raining for the ceremony and cocktail hour and the sun came out for a few minutes, and we got some beautiful photos before it started to downpour again! The famous motto I have always lived by (and sometimes have to remind myself to live by) “You just gotta go with the flow.”

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Ceremony

Because neither of us is really religious and are more so culturally Jewish, we put our own spin on the ceremony. We created our own vows, we also created our ring exchange vows. We had the 7 family members say the 7 blessings, however, we not only had the original 7 blessings in Hebrew, but we also found 7 beautiful English blessings regarding love, laughter, building a home, etc. So our 7 family members said both a Hebrew and an English blessing. We signed our Ketubah as well as had our two witnesses (both of our best friends) sign.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Bridal Party (or Lack Thereof)

To be honest, I’m so happy we didn’t have a bridal party. The amount of money bridesmaids and groomsmen have to spend is insane! Our guests were already traveling to Italy for our wedding. Now they have to spend money on a dress and a suit? We didn’t want to have those typical bridal party photos – they seem forced.

We wanted our guests to be able to relax and have fun on our wedding day. Wear whatever made them feel beautiful in, and just have a good time. Plus, as you start to plan your wedding you realize a lot of your decisions aren’t based on what you, the bride and groom, want. It’s what will make your guests the happiest. So, we wanted our ceremony to be truly about Etai and Me.

However, with that said, we did have both our families walk down the aisle as if they were the bridal party – we wanted our family to stand out from the rest of the guests. Give them a part to make them feel special and loved.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Photography & Videography

Our photographer, Roberta Facchini, I found her on Instagram. I loved her work, it was light and airy. She is based in London. When I contacted her regarding her work, she sent me a few weddings she had shot, one of them being at the Borgo Corsignano (the venue we got married in). I couldn’t believe when I opened up the album. Not only was it the same venue I will be getting married in, but the bride was WEARING THE SAME DRESS I PICKED! We were so thankful we picked Roberta! Her candid photos of us and our guests are amazing! She really captured the true feeling of the day from everyone – happiness!

Roberta recommended to us our lovely videographers HD Moments and we loved them too. You can see our stunning video here.

There were areas where we ended up splurging on our wedding. The videographer and photographer were the two most important parts of our wedding. We also went over budget because we weren’t willing to settle on just any photographer or videographer.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Decor

We really never understand picking a theme, or a wedding style. I did quizzes on “what type of bride are you?” “what type of wedding should you have” in the end I just picked things I loved, and it all seemed to fit well together. Colors we did pick, blush and blue with accents of greenery and gold.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

Special Details

I never met my grandfather (my Dad’s dad) he had a heart attack when my Dad was 17. My Dad’s favorite last memory of my Grandfather is playing soccer out in their backyard and their King Protea (South African flower) was in full bloom. I wanted to honor my Dad, my Grandfather, and my South African roots by having King Protea in my bouquet and chuppah.

Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano
Destination Wedding in Tuscany at Borgo Corsignano

The Honeymoon

Since we were already in Italy for our wedding we decided to make our honeymoon easy and we drove down to Amalfi Coast and stayed in Positano. We stayed at the beautiful hotel, Palazzo Murat! When things got serious between us we talked about getting married, having kids, and where we would want to go for our honeymoon. Originally, we both wanted to go to the Maldives! It was just too much traveling. Plus, Positano is breathtakingly beautiful!

I never use a travel agent! I am my own travel agent! We travel all over the world and I am the one who researches where to go, where to stay, what to do, where to eat, etc. So my advice to couples looking for the perfect honeymoon. Figure out what type of holiday you both are wanting. Relax by the pool? Hike? Water vs mountains? Exotic? Do you love animals? Do you like art and museums? Do you want to be around lots of people or isolated and feel like you’re the only two in the world? Once you figure out what type of honeymoon you want, then research places that have this. Lock down a location and take it one step at a time.

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