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Your wedding at Berkeley Fieldhouse was beautiful. It looked so relaxed and elegant. In planning your wedding what was on your priority list?

Krista Lougheed: Marc and I wanted to throw a celebration that was as unpretentious and as simple as a 140ish person traditional wedding could be. We decided early on that we wanted a fall wedding right downtown, with a non-religious ceremony, a full sit down dinner and open bar, budget permitting. Also, we go to a lot of weddings, so we hoped it would somehow feel unique to us.

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The sunflower was one of your flower choices and it seemed to inform the colour scheme for the decor. How did you make your choices so it all came together so well?

Teal, red, and that mustard/sunflower yellow are my favourite colours, and it occurred to me that I’d never been to a wedding with that bold a colour scheme. I thought if we could pull it off tastefully the overall aesthetic would be really memorable… and Marc didn’t object!

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Literally everyone is dancing and having fun. Can you share your secret music mix?

Our DJ Vince Manganaro asked us to dictate every key song and announcement he was to make, as well as our overall preferences for the evening’s soundtrack. We mainly asked that he play lots of Motown and Disco, then slowly roll through the decades as the night went on, and he delivered just that. Everyone was on their feet and months later we’re still getting compliments about the music!

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What was the idea behind the hats? So fun!

Vince asked if we had any game in mind to give away our centerpieces. By that point we were so tired of making decisions so we said “DJ’s Choice” and forgot all about it. Next thing we knew, Vince had Marc’s little cousin running around giving fedoras to the loudest life-of-the-party people in the room (as elected by their tablemates) and had all of them get up for a step-by-step dance and sing-along to “Shout!” It was a fantastic surprise and it got everyone in the mood to party!

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Your photographer captured stunning pictures of quiet moments with you and Marc around the Berkeley. Was this something you scripted or was it spontaneous on the day of?

Credit for those moments should absolutely go to our hilarious and super creative photographer Sara Wilde, because we only really asked for the usual family photos and lots of candid shots of our guests. Nonetheless, Sara and her assistant didn’t miss a beat and seemed to catch every look or laugh Marc and I shared throughout the evening, and we couldn’t be happier with the outcome.

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Your dress was stunning and the beautiful hairpiece blended the whimsical with the elegant. How did you arrive at this fantastic look?

Thank you! I was much more concerned with having an open bar and great vendors than a super expensive or lavish gown, so I went to David’s Bridal and found a dress that fit both my vision and my budget. The seamstresses there did a great job with the alterations and I ordered my hairpiece from their website, too. It just seemed like a nice subtle way to ramp up the bridal look, with a little flower child angle for good measure.

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What about Marc? How did he decide what to wear?

Marc typically dresses casually, and given the rustic charm of the Fieldhouse, we knew that this would not be a tux wedding. He and I both liked the look of a classic three-piece suit, so he found one in Kensington and picked out the white high top Converse sneakers for both he and Dave to personalize things a bit.

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The picture of you and Marc coming through the garden looks like you are on a romantic walk through the countryside. The interior of the Fieldhouse continues to have an outdoor feel with your bright sunny natural decor. Was this something you were aiming for?

No, but it’s funny you should say that, because it was anything but sunny on our wedding day! We woke up to grey skies, cold winds, and pouring rain, so our plan to host the ceremony outside was tossed out the window. Luckily, the rain stopped right in time for us to wander outdoors for photos and left us with that perfect overcast light that makes everything pop. We were so glad we got to take advantage of all the Berkeley’s nooks and crannies—inside and out—and the tent that we had strung with lights for our ceremony ended up being a great spot for family photos, anyway!

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What were you most concerned that went off without a hitch at your wedding?

Aside from the uber-specific day of itinerary, there wasn’t too much that I was concerned about. My mum suffered a stroke in early August—right in the middle of what most would consider wedding crunch time—and as of that moment our priorities just seemed to shift. Luckily, we had already made most of arrangements by that point, so along with my sisters I could focus on Mum and getting her the care she needed. After two and a half months in the hospital, knowing that she was well enough to attend our wedding was what mattered most.

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Was there anything that did go wrong or that you would have done differently in hindsight?

There are always a few things you’d do differently, but sadly we had one enormous blow, and that was the passing of my grandfather, Alan. Papa was unwell and had been in and out of hospitals for years, and his time just happened to come in the early morning of our wedding day. It was heartbreaking, and I had no idea how we could acknowledge our family’s loss without turning the wedding into a wake. Thankfully, my stepmum Ali called and offered to say something during the speeches and her words were beautifully poignant, as always. In summation, “There is no greater antidote for grief than joy.” It was perfect.

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Looking back what choice did you make in planning your wedding that you felt was a really good decision?

Hosting the ceremony and reception in the one-stop-shop that is the Berkeley was great for our guests who live outside the city and didn’t know the area, but it was the Berkeley Events staff that proved over and over that we chose the right place. After our first inquiry we were offered creative ideas on how we could keep to our budget, our coordinator Deborah was as calm and organized as they come, and both the wait and bar staff were friendly and professional from start to finish.

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It doesn’t look like you had a big wedding party—what was the reason behind that choice?

Our wedding party was made up of only two people–Marc’s brother Dave and my childhood best friend, Torey. We figured that weddings already have so many moving parts to keep track of and really just wanted to keep things simple, so we opted to let everyone just sit back and relax as our guests, and that’s exactly what they did!

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What was the best piece of advice you got before your wedding?

People told us that the day goes by quickly, so “take it all in”, and given that there was a dark cloud over the day with my Papa’s passing, I think Marc and I really were determined to enjoy this celebration that we’d worked so hard on planning. We ate every last bite of our carefully-selected meals, we did our best to make the rounds with our guests, we laughed, I cried, we drank, we danced—we had an awesome time.

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Aside from “taking it all in”, do you have any advice for couples currently planning their weddings?

It’s not a novel idea, but definitely don’t go into debt for just one day, and use Google docs for everything from your guests’ addresses and RSVPs to your budget and gift/thank you trackers. Having our most up to date lists and notes living together, safe and sound in cyber space, was the only thing that kept me organized!

Now that it’s come and gone, what three words would you use to describe the feel of your wedding?

Intimate, personal, and fun.

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Wedding Date: October 26, 2013

Couple’s Names: Marc Lougheed & Krista Lougheed (née Illies)

Photography: Sara Wilde Photography

Venue: Berkeley Fieldhouse

Florals: Sweetpea’s (Roncesvalles)

Bride’s Dress: David’s Bridal

Brides Shoes: ALDO

Groom’s Attire: Tom’s Place