Photographer: Tomasz Wagner Photo & Video
Venue: Vancouver Art Gallery
Wedding Planner & Décor: Petite Pearl Events
Bride’s Dress: Claire Pettibone, from Blush Bridal
Bridesmaid Dresses: J.Crew
Hair: Lyla Peterson, iS Salon
Makeup: Fiona Kwan,
Groom’s Outfit: J.P. Tilford by Samuelsohn, from Harry Rosen
Groomsmen Outfits: Brooks Brothers
Stationery: Design Spectacle (design)
Flowers: Celsia Floral
Catering: Drew Cooks! Catering
Cake: Lucky’s Doughnuts
Disc Jockey: DJ Eric Carver
Officiant: Rev. Sophia Ducey
Music: Janelle Nadeau (harpist)
Jewellery: Jeweliette
Wedding Rings: Minichiello Jewellers
Transportation: Time Limo

For Vancouver’s Angie Dilawri and Adam Mitchell planning a wedding proved to be the perfect lesson in trusting their instincts — and one another. The couple, who met almost 10 years ago while studying at UBC, were just two months out from their scheduled Sunshine Coast celebration when they decided the location wasn’t quite right.

“We weren’t going to have everyone we wanted at our wedding because of the logistics involved in getting to the Sunshine Coast,” Adam explains. “At that point we took a step back and went with our gut.”

Describing themselves as “urban, city people” (Angie works in telecommunications, Adam in investment management), the couple felt a strong connection to Vancouver and realized it had been calling them all along.

“Adam and I are pretty modern and like things that are simple and different,” says Angie. “We’d always had the Vancouver Art Gallery as a venue in the back of our mind, and when we decided to change things to the city, they had our date available. Everything was meant to be.”
Despite their late change of heart, the couple always knew what they wanted for their wedding. It all began on Christmas Eve 2012 with Adam’s proposal. Having told Angie he thought a “quiet” Christmas was in order, Adam fooled his soon-to-be fiancée into believing there were no big presents under the tree for her. That is, until almost all the gifts had been opened.

“Right at the end, Adam pulled the ring out of the Christmas tree!” recalls Angie.

Having dated for seven years before becoming engaged, the couple knew they wanted their day to be a true reflection of their lives and loves. Their French bulldog became the first dog given permission to attend an event at the art gallery, performing the role of flower girl, while Adam’s brother’s dog acted as ring bearer during the ceremony in the gallery’s dramatic rotunda. In other personal touches, the couple’s favourite Lucky’s Doughnuts took the place of a traditional wedding cake, and a “kissing game” wheel was spun throughout the evening to help spread the love during the reception in the gallery’s rooftop pavilion.

Bringing together all the details of their special day was a task entrusted to Jessica Minnie of Vancouver’s Petite Pearl Events. From vendor recommendations to executing their wedding in a new location with only weeks’ notice, the investment in a professional planner made all the difference to their experience, Adam notes.

While the day was filled with memorable moments, both bride and groom single out their “first look” in Stanley Park as one of the most special. “We hadn’t really thought about a first look until our photographer brought it up,” says Adam. “It was a really great way to start off the day because you’re only focused on each other and not everything going on around you. It was a moment just between us.”

Looking back, the newlyweds say their wedding planning taught them to stay true to themselves — and not to sweat the small stuff.

“There’s so many little things that can stress you out along the way when you’re planning a wedding,” says Angie. “We stressed about choosing our stationery but, ironically, the invites were for the wrong location anyway and we sent out an email with the changed venue!

“It’s a good lesson to learn, that at the end of the day, that stuff really does not matter. Everyone is at your wedding to have a great time and share in your love — and that’s what is important.”