Reflection: Claire and Tim enjoy the view from one of the sweeping verandahs at Commissioner’s House, a moment captured by their friend and guest, professional photographer Amanda Temple. Below, details from the couple’s custom whimsical Story Booklet Wedding Invitation, handpainted by Amy Tan and printed on Japanese handmade Washi paper. *Photo by Amanda Temple
Reflection: Claire and Tim enjoy the view from one of the sweeping verandahs at Commissioner’s House, a moment captured by their friend and guest, professional photographer Amanda Temple. Below, details from the couple’s custom whimsical Story Booklet Wedding Invitation, handpainted by Amy Tan and printed on Japanese handmade Washi paper. *Photo by Amanda Temple
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Our feature bride, Bermuda Sun sales and marketing executive Claire James — pictured on the front cover of the ‘Fairytale Weddings’ supplement — describes how she planned her dream wedding to Tim Ritchie, catering manager for Fourways Catering, in October. Claire also provides tips for other brides-to-be on how to personalize their wedding day.


When I asked my husband Tim what was most important to him about our wedding plans, his first response was that I should say ‘Yes’.

That little word set in motion the most extraordinary two year journey that sent my step-daughter Lilian and I into a whirlwind of research, planning, sampling and scrapbooking from magazines much like this one.

Our family walks quickly turned into explorations of possible ceremony sites, imagined set-ups and logistics, and as we got closer to the date Tim patiently listened to our mini presentations for design ideas and projects.

Heirloom

In the meantime, being the impresario that he is in his capacity as catering manager with Fourways Catering, he had already worked his magic for us, as he has done for so many other couples, bringing together the best in the business to ensure that the day was all that we dreamed it could be.

More than 70 per cent of our guests were from overseas and, as we opted for a traditional Bermuda Thursday wedding, the remainder kindly took time off to bless our marriage and help us celebrate.

At the heart of all our decisions was the love we have for our family and friends, and how to embrace our Bermudian, Canadian and English traditions.

Personal touches included a bespoke heirloom pin designed by Alexandra Mosher, the raising of the three countries’ flags, a photo booth with props, and a personalized front cover on the bermuda.com Guide, welcoming our guests.

We also opted to have personalized stationery for our wedding. We produced a Souvenir Wedding Booklet, assisted by graphic designer Jody Worthington and printed and handfolded at Island Press.

The decision to write a Souvenir Wedding Booklet came about mainly because I knew that despite normally being the first to stand up and speak, I would not be making a bride’s speech on this particular day.

Therefore, everything I wanted to say on behalf of Tim and I was laid out as an extension to a programme of events.

It also included a glossary of interesting facts, such as the history of Commissioner’s House and family history. Our official wedding invite was actually created like a story book, with the help of artist Amy Tan at The TreeSpace Studio, in Los Angeles, California.

We loved the whimsical, vintage feel of these invitations, and with so many overseas guests, it was ideal for sharing as much information as we could.

Fairytale Weddings January 2012