Nicole grew up in Mexico and Carlos has family ties, so the decision to throw a Mexican destination wedding in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato was a no brainer for the couple. What we love about this particular destination celebration is that couple went black-tie over beach. We’re loving all the over-the-top old fashioned glamour of the event details like the bride’s dramatic Vera Wang ball gown, her custom-made “wax teardrop” headpiece and the gazillian roses…everywhere! Planner and florist San Miguel Weddings definitely knocked it out of the park and we’re obsessed with the way photographer Heather Curiel captured all the details in her signature photo-journalism style. Enjoy!
From the Bride: Carlos and I met in college. We were introduced by a mutual friend on a night out; we spoke for about 20 minutes and then went our separate ways (we were both “taken” at the time). Fast forward two years later and we coincided at the same lounge where we met. We had a couple glasses of champagne and by the end of the night I had agreed to go out on a date with him the very next day. Our first day lasted 8 hours. He proposed years later in September 2014 in Tucson, Arizona during a family dinner he arranged with the help of both of our parents and siblings. Even my little brother flew in from Monterrey, Mexico! It couldn’t have been more perfect. I grew up in Nogales, Sonora, and his family has roots in Mexico, so we quickly decided on a Mexican destination wedding in San Miguel de Allende, Guanajuato.
We wanted an intimate black-tie affair that would be both beautiful and fun. We enlisted the help of local wedding planner Alicia Vilar who was able to bring our vision to life. We took a trip to SMA nine months before the wedding to decide on a venue and that’s when we fell in love with Casa Cariño. A beautiful villa overlooking the town with enough rooms for our immediate family and more terraces anyone should ever need in their lifetime. The day of the wedding we had cocktail hour on the second floor terrace and then proceeded to the downstairs patio for dinner and dancing. Some guests stayed after the party was over and enjoyed Mexican beers on the rooftop terrace well into the wee hours of the morning.
Our color palette was gray with a touch of metallic and blush. I did not want matching dresses for my bridesmaids so I gave them an idea of the look I was going for. Everyone selected a dress that reflected their personal style. The groom and groomsman wore traditional black tuxes. I loved the classic look we were able to achieve.
I had seen a picture many years ago of a Mexican bride from the 1960’s and became obsessed with her head piece. It was made of azares de cera (wax teardrops) but they turned out to be incredibly hard to find. Luckily my mom was able to track down a headpiece in Oaxaca. Once we received it the color was too white against my ivory dress so my mom contacted a local artist from my hometown who created a custom color and hand painted each piece to match the dress. It was one of my favorite pieces from my bridal attire. I will keep it forever.
My dress was the Hayley from Vera Wang. I must have tried on over 100 dresses before I decided on this one! I wanted a dramatic ball gown but something that was still simple and unexpected. My dress had the right amount of everything I wanted: a ball gown with a lot of detail and personality. I was hoping to wear lace on my wedding day so I incorporated it with the cathedral-length veil I wore during our church ceremony.
The escort card table was one of my favorite things. We purchased luchadores (Mexican wrestler) action figures and spray painted them gold. They were holding a tag in their hand with the guest name and they doubled as favors.
At the reception we opted to sit at a large table with our parents as opposed to having our own little section. I’m so glad we did it this way because we were able to have time with them during dinner. I will never forget the happy faces of our parents as they studied the room smiling.
Guests were treated to a delicious starter of fried cactus covered in red pasilla sauce, followed by Poblano chicken and flan for dessert. We also figured we would all be hungry from all the happy dancing so we served a second dinner at midnight, red chilaquiles with refried beans and Mexican rice followed by wedding cake. In traditional Mexican culture, you make sure your guests never leave your home hungry, so we made sure everyone left our party happy and full.
My favorite part was walking down the aisle and walking out of church, such an incredible happy feeling. One of my favorite memories was my mom getting emotional after I put my dress on. On her wedding day she had to dress herself because my grandmother was busy doing last minute details. When my sister got married my mom could not be there to dress her because she was taking care of arrangements for the day-after brunch; so for her to ‘break the spell’ and be present at the time I was getting ready was incredibly special.
My advice to other brides would be to hire a wedding planner if you can. We didn’t have to worry about a thing and enjoyed our getting-ready process fully. All of our siblings and parents were able to relax and be a part of everything since the wedding planner was managing all of the details. And enjoy the day! It goes by so quickly.
Photographer: Heather Curiel // Planning / Flowers / Cake: San Miguel Weddings // Hair and Makeup: Denisse Baraza // Dress: Vera Wang // Band: Sugar-Alebrije Producciones // Ceremony Location: Parroquia de San Miguel Arcángel // Reception location: Casa Cariño