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Finally The Bride: I'm Married!

Dec 7th 2018

Finally The Bride: I'm Married!

When I started planning my wedding just over a year ago, my mind was racing with big dreams of the perfect Halloween-themed wedding. I wanted it to have dramatic colors, lots of candles, the perfect food, Instagram-worthy details, and non-stop fun. What can I say? I've been dreaming about my big day since I was in the womb.

As October 27th came and went, I learned more than I ever thought possible about weddings, expectations, love, and life. So, as I compile my pictures, rate my vendors, preserve my dress, and dream about the day over and over again, I wanted to share a few things I learned with the community that was there from the moment I said "yes" until my grand "I dos!"

Hazel: Cabernet Sequin | Chloe: Black Tie Sequin | Rosalie: Cabernet Tulle | Ivy Top: Cabernet Sequin + Mila Skirt: Cabernet Sequin | Rosalie: Cabernet Tulle | Bandie Top: Cabernet Sequin + Mila Skirt: Cabernet Sequin | Chloe: Cabernet Sequin | Sadie Top: Cabernet Sequin + Skylar Skirt: Cabernet Tulle | Penelope: Cabernet Tulle | Chloe: Black Tie Sequin | Bandie Top: Cabernet Sequin + Skylar Skirt: Cabernet Tulle

hugs at rachel varina's wedding mom rob jon porch tears

Everything Went Wrong

When I say everything went wrong, I mean: Literally. EVERYTHING. Went. Wrong. As someone who is a diehard planner (and been in the wedding industry for quite some time), I figured that my thirteen months of plotting and planning would lead to the perfect wedding. Despite being told over and over again that things would go wrong (what bride wants to hear that?!), I knew that everything would go according to plan. Lol, amiright?

It turns out, however, that the rumors are true: No matter how perfectly you plan, odds are, something won't go right. Between forgetting my bouquet when I walked down the aisle, not finding the cake knife so just biting into our cake, my MOH being unable to make it, and our music list getting lost, things went totally haywire from the start. While I'd love to say I took it in a stride, during the morning, it was pretty stressful. From forgetting to put on my accessories, seeing my groom WAY too many times before the ceremony, and having no idea how to spray Champagne, it was just the start to a day filled with mishaps and mistakes. Once my music played, however, and I made my way down the aisle (and realized I wasn't holding my bouquet and started giggling), nothing else mattered. All we did was laugh, love, and embrace the chaos. After that, whenever something else when wrong, it just added to the memories of our beautifully flawed day!

crazy bride popping champagne not able to open it rachel varina getting ready

**Bride note: Try NOT to look totally crazy when popping bottles...

The Time Went By So Fast

When Jon proposed in September 2017, it seemed like I had plenty of time to pull our wedding together. 13 months later, however, when I woke up on my wedding day, I was totally shocked by how fast our engagement seemed to go by. From being showered with love at my Try-On Party, "Harry Potter" bridal shower, and coven-themed bachelorette party, to spending every Sunday planning with the Revelry family, it seemed like I had forever before walking down to aisle. Still, a week before the big day, I was totally scrambling to finish things, and the day-of, it was pretty much Stress City, population: Me.

But it wasn't even just the planning that went by fast. Come the day-of, it seemed that the activity never stopped. From waking up early and getting ready, to having our first look and waltzing down the aisle, we worked up a sweat trying (and failing) to stay on schedule. Plus, with never-ending laughs and lots of Champagne, there wasn't a moment to rest during the day's flurry of events. That's why it's SO important to have vendors you love and trust to capture your big day. From the moment I met my photographer, Rebecca, and my videographer, Travis I knew they were both exactly who I needed to document our wedding. From keeping me sane, getting my party where they needed to be, and ensuring we had the best time, they were a dream come true.

Rachel Varina wedding first dance and bouquet with harry botter pages all was well forgot on wedding day

From the beginning, I knew that the most important thing I wanted my photographer and videographer to do (in addition to getting some gorgeous, Instagram-worthy shots), was to take a documentary-style approach to our day. I wasn't looking for a million perfectly posed shots and stuffy stances. I wanted things to be real - full of laughter, awkwardness, and some spectacular story-telling. From laughing my entire way down the aisle after forgetting my bouquet, my fiancé and I giggle-crying during our vows, and having the weirdest first dance ever, our visual vendors made sure we would have plenty of documentation to keep us smiling and laughing for a lifetime.

**Bride note: Since my best friend and Maid of Honor just had a baby and couldn't attend the big day, we made sure to have her presence known. With a cardboard cutout of her rocking Revelry's Hazel dress, she made for some amazing photo ops. Was it what we had dreamed of when we planned my wedding a year before? Of course not! But making the best out of the situation and enjoying it anyway is the secret to the perfect "I dos."

Detail shots of Rachel Varina's wedding bridesmaid cutout in Revelry sparkling wine bottle and bride and groom hugging

It Was Still Absolutely Perfect

The thing is, as someone who has loved weddings from birth and dreamed of her big day forever, realizing that things weren't going right wasn't an easy pill to swallow at first. No one wants to have to make a cardboard cutout of their bestie, spend hours decorating a wine bottle only to forget to drink it on your wedding day, or have your groom rip off your garter on the dance floor, totally breaking it before getting to toss it. Talk about fails.

And the truth is, way, WAY more went wrong than I had imagined. Like:

Forgetting to get photos with my veil and bouquet, so hastily taking some before heading up to the reception...

Bridesmaids hug bride and bride's shoe comes undone all in Revelry bride and groom drink champagne on bus

Constantly tripping over my shoelaces and getting hugged way, WAY too much for my liking...

Forgetting to give our parents' gifts until way too late in the day (and forgetting to give some gifts entirely)...

Rachel Varina of Revelry Finally the bride walking down aisle and laughing with parents forgetting bouquet

Not to mention realizing just a moment too late that you don't have your bouquet...

The totally unplanned and absolutely flawed ceremony moments...

And the never-ending photobombs...

Rachel Varina and Jon bite into wedding cake at Halloween formal wedding in October in Tampa

The non-traditional cake-cutting (after misplacing the cake knife) and the aftermath of just biting into the icing...

It was all unplanned, originally unwanted, and yet, totally real. And as my husband (HUSBAND! So WEIRD!) and I recount the day again and again and again, we can't help but agree: Despite everything going wrong, it was all so very, very right. Because that's what love, life, and marriage is truly about. It's not things being perfect. In fact, it's the opposite. It's knowing that things aren't always going to go right, and having someone there to keep you laughing despite it all.

Rachel Varina bride with Alexa maid of honor in Revelry clothing

In the end, I got to have the people who love me the most there (physically, virtually, and via cutout, of course) to celebrate one of the craziest days of my life. They were there through the planning and the stress, the dress fittings, and trying to avoid tears while perfecting the "Thriller" dance.

Rachel Varina wedding things I forgot everything wend wrong it's okay

And as the day went on and we traded our single lives for rings and our diets for ice cream, there was truly no better way to celebrate this next chapter than with everyone who made the last one so beautiful. And in the end, that's what a wedding is all about (the love, not the ice cream. But we're partial to both...).

It's not about the perfect dress or the dream flowers. It's not about the venue, the music, the bouquet, or the red Michael Jackson jacket you special ordered and totally forgot to put on until AFTER you rocked out to "Thriller." No, what weddings are about is simple: They're about love. A chance to look back at all of the love you've had and embrace the love you're about to receive.

bride and groom Rachel and Jon walking off into their wedding together bride talking with beautiful bridesmaids in burgundy cabernet revelry dresses

Weddings are about a lot of things, but at Revelry, we want to make sure you remember the most important: Weddings are about love, laughter, and a REAL happily ever after. They're about the tears and the triumphs you've faced as a couple, and the promise to giggle at the hard times in the future. They're about funny poses with your friends and a million and one toasts with your gang. The hugs, the inside jokes, the hand-holding, and the happy cries - weddings are about the beautifully insignificant and perfectly flawed moments. The moments that make a wedding absolutely real, absolutely magical, and absolutely "you."

Bride and groom cheers before wedding with party and pose with siblings looking awkward

In the end, it didn't matter that I forgot my flowers, failed to have our grand exit, and laughed my way through our vows. Because as we walked away together, hand-in-hand (or, more like "stumbled away together with a piece of pizza in each hand" but, whatever), it wasn't a big deal. The time flying by and the mishaps along the way created something that was real, honest, and uniquely "us."

So, if there's one thing I could impress upon brides, brides-to-be, bridesmaids, and dreamers, it's this: Throw out the idea of perfect and embrace the idea of "real." Because you can have your dream dress, a wonderful wedding, and a lifetime of happiness without the stress of perfection. We want you to trade that for the idea of "fun." Because as you crowd the dancefloor with your girls, kiss your spouse at the alter, and look at your photos again and again, you'll realize: It's not the happiest day of your life because it was perfect. It's the happiest day of your life because it's "yours." And at the end of it all, we'll take a lifetime of bad dance moves, lots of laughs, and beautiful bridesmaids over perfection anyday!

xoxo, Revelry

Bridesmaid Looks: Hazel: Cabernet Sequin | Chloe: Black Tie Sequin | Rosalie: Cabernet Tulle | Ivy Top: Cabernet Sequin + Mila Skirt: Cabernet Sequin | Rosalie: Cabernet Tulle | Bandie Top: Cabernet Sequin + Mila Skirt: Cabernet Sequin | Chloe: Cabernet Sequin | Sadie Top: Cabernet Sequin + Skylar Skirt: Cabernet Tulle | Penelope: Cabernet Tulle | Chloe: Black Tie Sequin | Bandie Top: Cabernet Sequin + Skylar Skirt: Cabernet Tulle

Photographer: Rebecca Jordan | Venue: L'Unione Italiana | Videographer: Creator T Productions | Hair and Makeup: Lasting Luxe | Wedding Dress: Kitty Chen | Bridal Boutique:
The Perfect Dress | Suits: The Black Tux | Pajamas: Target | Bouquet: Etsy | Shoulder Necklace: Etsy