Destination Wedding Photographer | Shelter Island, NY | Valentine + Erich
Valentine and Erich’s stateside wedding fete felt like a great, big, comfortable family reunion that just happened to have a gorgeous woman in a white dress and a very dapper groom by her side (and up on stage).
Valentine and Erich were first married in Valentine’s homeland, Greece, the previous month. After their honeymoon in Santorini, Mykonos, and Geneva, they returned home to New York for a celebration with the Americans at the Shelter Island home of Erich’s late grandfather, Governor Hugh Carey. Their wedding “invitations” were passport replicas, announcing the destination wedding theme: passport to party.
Valentine first wore the dress she had donned for the Greek wedding. She had tried on dozens on other dresses and expected something streamlined but her mother in law saw this one and it was a winner. The lacey cap-sleeved neckline is to die for.
Erich’s mother gave her a family heirloom horseshoe pin to wear on the special day.
The couple did their first look around the property that Erich has known since childhood.
The bridesmaids wore subtly sparkly short champagne dresses and carried beautiful bouquets of succulents, dahlias, roses, rosemary, and ferns wrapped in trailing burlap ribbons.
The groomsmen were given hats (classic Carey) and looked perfectly breezy in khaki suits with blue button down shirts. I totally dug Erich’s brown and white wingtip shoes.
Their ceremony was held in a small Catholic church not far away, Our Lady of the Isle.
Valentine and Erich exited to a marvelous New Orleans style Mardi Gras band that paraded them down the street with lots of revelry and into a bright blue pickup truck for the ride back to the reception.
Valentine changed into her reception gown, a sleek Provonias number.
In Greek tradition, the wedding bands are worn on the right hand.
They appeared on the Carey property to bagpipes, oyster shucking, shrimp grilling, children running, and guests just taking in the stunning day and views overlooking the water.
The two enjoyed their first dance to “Crazy Love” by Van Morrison.
There is something that you should know about the Carey family. They are performers deep down to the core. Flower girls sang the national anthem to guests before dinner, Erich serenaded his beaming bride, and the entire gang joined in rip-roaring sing-alongs to “The Weight” and “Proud Mary.” There were so many happy voices and swaying bodies in that big tent.
Valentine and her family brought their own traditions, including a Greek dance and an ice cream sundae bar. Valentine’s family had owned Gelina’s, an ice cream shop, for years.
Sunset over the water was breathtaking. Guests stood outside on that warm evening to watch the spectacular colors.
Valentine gave me one of the greatest complements I had ever received. She crowd sourced her vendors. She said that she had seen over 25 weddings in the past 5 years and, out of all of those pictures, she knew that she had to have me for her wedding. It was an incredible day and I feel so lucky to have gotten my own #passporttoparty that weekend.
I can hear her heart beat for a thousand miles
And the heavens open every time she smiles
And when I come to her that’s where I belong
Yet I’m running to her like a river’s song
~ Van Morrison, “Crazy Love”