I know Mira since childhood. She was always kind of a tomboy but also really hardworking girl and sweet gentle soul. Hearing about the preparations for her Cancun beach wedding during some fuss about finding the perfect turquoise hair flower to match the color theme, I was so curious to know all about this wedding!
She even surprised her Serbian bridesmaids with thoughtful gift and special message and arranged everything about their arrival, how great is that?
With destination wedding conundrums, tomboy to princess makeover, beautiful decor, romantic moments, some hair (almost) meltdowns, crazy barefoot KOLO dancing and trash the dress moments, this Hollywood movie worth story will have to settle on this blog for now! 😉 Let’s hear all about this couple and their dream wedding directly from the bride herself:
SO, YOUR LOVE STORY BEGINS….HOW DID YOU TWO MEET AND FALL IN LOVE?
Well, after more then a year hanging out in Serbian clubs, my girlfriends and I decided to check out the American scene. One night back in Summer of 2008, 4 of us went to a very popular American club in downtown Chicago. Well, looks like Dejan and his friends had the same idea that night… we exchanged numbers and started dating soon after.
DID YOU ALREADY KNOW YOU BOTH WANT DESTINATION WEDDING OR THE IDEA CAME ALONG WITH PLANNING? DID YOU TWO HAVE THE SAME WISHES OR THE GROOM LEFT YOU BE THE „HEAD“ OF THE ORGANIZATION AND DECORATION IDEAS?
We both knew that we want to get married on the beach and since Cancun was our getaway place for many years, it was very easy to pick location. Well, since I was always a tomboy and thought that would never get married, I actually did not have any idea about weddings. It came as a surprise to me 🙂 We worked with many people to make this destination wedding possible but Dejan and I made all decisions together.
WAS IT HARD TO FIND BEST WEDDING PLANNER FOR YOU? TELL US ABOUT DIFFERENCES BETWEEN AMERICAN AND SERBIAN WEDDING.
Well, the hardest part was to pick the resort (hotel). We had a person from destination weeding organization who helped us find the resort that will offer everything that we were looking for. Along the process we learned that not many resorts actually offer entire wedding on the beach (that was one of the conditions that we were really looking for). After 5 moths of extensive negotiation we decided to go with Paradisus mainly because they have the best beach.
American weddings usually consist of 3 parts. Ceremony, Cocktail hour and Reception. Those 3 are usually held on different locations (Ceremony on the beach, Cocktal Hour in the bar and Reception in ballroom or by the pool), but we really wanted to have all 3 on the beach, which we did. Of course all 3 parts require different decoration, coordinator, food, music, etc.
CHOOSING THE RIGHT PHOTOGRAPHER…
We met Brittany Lynn-Milovanovic from “Brittany Lynn Studios” at the wedding expo in Chicago. We clicked right away probably because she is married to a Serbian guy :-). Brittany and her husband Dejan decided to travel with us to Cancun and we were really happy with their decisions.
CHOOSING THE DRESS AND SUITE, RINGS, SHOES… DETAILS PLEASE!
I actually bought my dress online :-). Dejan took measures of me and the website customized the dress according the measurements we sent …. I think we were really lucky with dress and Dejan’s suite. Dejan bought his in the store we found by accident just walking through the mall. It fitted him perfectly. We were barefoot, so we did not have a trouble finding right shoes.
Rings? Well, since Dejan proposed me with Tiffany ring, it was logical choice to go back to Tiffany’s and pick wedding rings together. It was really nice experience.
HOW DID YOU ORGANIZE ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY FROM ABROAD TO MEET YOU AT THE DESTINATION, TELL US PROS AND CONS?
Well, that was a nightmare! That was definitely down side of the whole wedding! We had our wedding website and people were supposed to book rooms through the website in order to be part of the wedding. But….. people do what is easier for them… it was a lot of work to make all of the accommodations since we had guests from Serbia, Germany, and from all of the America. But most important thing was that everyone made it in time.
WHAT WAS THE MOST IMPORTANT THING ABOUT YOUR WEDDING YOU WANTED TO ACHIEVE (ATMOSPHERE, FAMILY, DECOR, MUSIC.…)? WHAT KIND OF DECORATION DID YOU WANT, TELL US ABOUT THE COLOR THEME AND ABOUT PARTY ITSELF.
The most important thing to Dejan and me was to have relaxing atmosphere! And I really think that we achieved that. It was really intimate happy wedding.
Well, blue was always my favorite color, so when I realized that we can have blue/ turquoise as wedding theme I was really happy.
For the Ceremony we had an option of different canopy etc, so basically we could change, add or remove every single detail that would come to our mind. We even had customized aisle runner that we carried in our hands on the plane! 🙂 Actually all customized things that had our names and the date we had to order here in Chicago and carry with us in Cancun.
Cocktail hour was closer to the sea with minimal decoration because we knew that everyone will just look for food and drinks at that point. We had fantastic Spanish guitarist playing live music.
Reception required the most preparation due to a lot of details. We had cute flip flops to help our guest find their seat. The Gift bags! Well, it is a custom at American wedding to give small gifts to guests, especially those that came from a far. Since all of our guests came from a far, we prepared gift bags with all necessary items that they will need to survive the weekend and the wedding :-). We prepared beach bags with sunscreen, sunglasses, fan welcoming them to our wedding, brush, small mirror, nail cutter, and of course Hangover kit 🙂 . The Hungover kit had aspirin, vitamin c, band aid, mints, small cookie…. staff like that.
We had DJ (J&S Audio and Visual ) who really did a great job. Music was a mix of rock/pop old/new, mostly American music. But of course we had KOLO….dancing barefoot on the sand was really like a dream come true…. I think that everyone felt the same. There is really something about sand between your toes 🙂
BEHIND THE SCENES, WAS IT STRESSFUL OR RELAXED, TELL US THE ATMOSPHERE AND SOME FUNNY DETAILS MAYBE?
It was really really stressful process, but definitely worth it. We had to sign on every single detail, probably because the hotel is scared of lawsuits…
Well, when I look back there were a lot of funny things, but at the time it felt more like I’m going to ”kill” someone.
So I had appointment with hairstylist at noon, I think, and right after that I had make up appointment as well. So I went to the salon and there was this old lady saying she will do my hair (she did not speak English at all). I tried to explain to her that I want messy bun on the side, as I already said in the email and in the contract provided from the hotel. She just smiled and said Ok, which wasn’t exactly promising. So, I’m thinking ‘Ok, sure, she knows what she is doing, I mean this is huge hotel that has like hundreds of weddings a year”.
So I’m sitting in my chair while she is doing my hair. After 45min she gave me the mirror to look my hair from behind and all I see was bunch of “sarmi” on back of my head. I almost had heart attack! I kept saying “NO NO NO, that is not what I wanted”. So she re-did it, over and over and over…. Brittany was with me at the time and afterword’s she said she thought that I will loose it right there in the salon. The lady tried to fix my hair but she just did not understand what I want… until make up girl came and fixed everything. Thankfully she was girl that knew exactly what I wanted otherwise there would be no wedding! 🙂
WHAT were the best memorable moments of your wedding?
Definitely, the trash the dress moment. I think even if you ask our guests they will say the same thing. It was something that just pictures can describe.
HOW DID YOU DECIDE TO „TRASH THE DRESS“ INTO THE WATER AT THE END OF THE PARTY?
We were actually planning to do trash the dress day after the wedding, but Brittany the photograph come up with the idea, I think during the wedding… we just went with it. I asked DJ to announced it at the end of the night and suddenly everyone started rushing towards the ocean with us. It was amazing. I did not expect everyone to jump with us, but that was definitely the best part. The water was so warm and very pleasant. It was really funny watching Ester (our main wedding coordinator) counting people when they started coming out of water. She was so scarred that someone will not come out! 🙂
AT THE END OF THE DAY, DO YOU REGRET SOMETHING OR DID IT EXCEED ALL YOUR EXPECTATIONS, MESSAGE FOR DESTINATION BRIDES TO BE?
No, not a single thing. The wedding exceeded all of my expectations, I could not even imagine it to be like it was.
A message? Hm… well, it’s your day and a bride should do whatever will make her happy, even if that makes everyone else go nuts around you! 🙂
Author: Mirjana Manojlović
Photo editing: Mia Manolo blog
Lector of English language: Ivana Jordačević
Special thanks to Mira Popović & Dejan Slavnić
Special thanks to Marta Matić
Disclosure: *I was not compensated for this post. All opinions are my own and not influenced in any way.