Inspiring LGBT weddings around the world

On 2016, the former president of the United States, Barack Obama, declared June as Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, and Transgender Pride Month. At his proclamation, he declared: “I call upon the people of the United States to eliminate prejudice everywhere it exists, and to celebrate the great diversity of the American people”. To celebrate this month, we’ll show you a few inspiring LGBT weddings around the world:

Flying Eagles

Photo: Marcos Valdés  | Wedding planner: Guadalupe Alvarez

Cristina and Sonrisa got married on December 10th, in Villas Xido, Mexico. The whole wedding was planned by Guadalupe Alvarez and her team. Cristina and Sonrisa live in Denver, they are both activists and Mexican-American and they met each other at the College. “Cristina said that after their first date she said it was very nice to meet somebody who understood her history and background. I love this couple because they are fighters, they fight for the right to be who they are, they fight for immigration reform, for human rights, they have a great heart and they are lovely”, says Guadalupe.
Photo: Marcos Valdés  | Wedding planner: Guadalupe Alvarez
According to Guadalupe, the main challenge at their wedding was dealing with time. “They are very busy and we only had a few months to plan it, but they are so nice we wanted to do everything they wanted, our artisans worked hard to make the special ‘Papel Picado’. We wanted the ceremony to be very special, and it really was – when they were getting married an eagle flew. So the challenges were the small amount of time to plan”, explains Guadalupe.

First same-sex wedding in Lake Orta

Photo: Cristiano Ostinelli | Wedding planner: Valentina Lombardi

When Jessica and Marisa decided to get married in Italy, LGBT weddings in Italy did not have civil validity (on May 2016, Italy became the last Western European country to join the list of worldwide countries that have legalized same-sex weddings), but symbolic ceremonies could be planned everywhere in the country. The wedding planner Valentina Lombardi was in charge of it.

Photo: Cristiano Ostinelli | Wedding planner: Valentina Lombardi

Even so, this South-African couple fell in love with Italy thanks to a business trip. They decided that Italy was the perfect place to say “I do”.  So, they planned their romantic wedding by the shores of romantic Lake Orta and they got legally married in London (UK).

Photo: Cristiano Ostinelli | Wedding planner: Valentina Lombardi

“Both Marisa and Jessica got ready to Hotel San Rocco.They chose to plan everything in the same wedding venue, the Hotel San Rocco itself. Both ladies decided to wear white dresses and they were both stunning in them! The officiant Riccardo performed a sweet tailored ceremony that everybody loved and Ariel Classica musicians played a romantic music as background. Bridal bouquets were made of roses and gypsophila and they were both personally composed by the mother of one of the ladies. For their wedding ceremony, they chose the little garden of Villa Gippini, which is part of Hotel San Rocco itself. Marisa and Jessica decided to leave their guests for a while enjoying their aperitif on the terrace of Hotel San Rocco, listening to lovely music of Ariel Jazz. They took the occasion to reach St. Julius Island with their bridesmaids for fantastic wedding photos. Boat trip could not miss and the four ladies had a great fun together”, says Valentina.

A constitutional wedding

Photo: Matt Yung Photography | Wedding planner: Sarah Day

Mark and Jeff had been together for almost 20 years and could finally legally marry regardless of what state they lived in. “In fact, Jeff is an attorney who personally worked the bill in Georgia (that didn’t pass until the supreme court ruled) so we incorporated the US Constitution into the design of the wedding because it had such a significant meaning to the couple. We had small constitutions printed and bound in the wedding color. Then we had our stationarist create custom bands with the guest names and tables numbers around each constitution as the escort card. These also served as the guests favors from the wedding”, tells Sarah Day, the wedding planner in charge of this wedding.

Photo: Matt Yung Photography | Wedding planner: Sarah Day

Sarah Day has been working with LGBT weddings long before the Supreme Court ruled it in the United States. “They used to be called commitment ceremonies.  One of the things that we have found is that not all vendors are comfortable working with this type of wedding. So the industry has gone from couples trying to find vendors that were ‘friendly’ to now finding vendors that have knowledge and understanding with a portfolio of weddings. What this has created is a very specialized dynamic within the industry because Same Sex Couples want to and should be treated just like every other couple out there. However, there are nuances that make these weddings very special and unique. We treat these weddings the same as the differences between a Catholic or Jewish ceremony or a multi-cultural wedding. I have been in this industry for 20 years now and the impact of love and deep meaning behind this wedding even made me tear up!”, claims  Sarah Day.

Photo: Matt Yung Photography | Wedding planner: Sarah Day

The look in their eyes

Juan Carlos and Antonio got married in Mexico City, on 2016. “When I met them I was caught by the way they look at each other, they were very clear since day one, the wedding day should be on September 10th because on that date is their anniversary. After two years together, they decided to live together and, mostly they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together.  I believe that they are two different souls with special comments about the wedding. JC wanted a garden and a very delicate wedding, while Antonio wanted more luxury. Purple should be the color of their day”, explains the wedding planner in charge, Cecilia Piñeda Rosas.
Photo: Jos Hernández | Wedding planner: Cecilia Piñeda Rosas
JC is from Peru and he is now in Mexico as an Innovation Director of Learnex (an English program for companies), so he wanted a place where their family and friends could enjoy Mexico. “September is a rainy season in the city, so, because of that, they decided to get married at a very lovely and historic hotel, Gran Hotel de la Ciudad de México”, says Cecilia.
Photo: Jos Hernández | Wedding planner: Cecilia Piñeda Rosas
The legal wedding happened on one of the rooms of the hotel.”LGBT weddings are legal in Mexico since 2007, but that day, families and people were marching at city downtown (two blocks away from the wedding hotel) against gay families. Yes, and they were against children adoption by LGBT couples. I felt powerless about it, imagine I was making a special day for a gay couple and outside ‘moral families’ were marching against the community. Ironic, isn´t it? Obviously, that march affected my logistic. So, 2 days before I announced to everybody, including the wedding guests, to arrive earlier because many streets would be closed. Thank God, vendors, guests and the couple arrived on time and it was a very lovely wedding”, claims Cecilia.

*First photo credit:  Marcos Valdés  | Wedding plannerGuadalupe Alvarez

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