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Real Wedding: Pepita and Benjamin

Bride: Pepita Fernandez
Groom: Ben Lester
Wedding gown styleJoan
Boutique purchased: Vera Wang Madison Ave, New York
Wedding date: April 23, 2011
Location: Waiheke Island, New Zealand
PhotographerEmma Hughes

Did you have a certain style in mind when you started your search for a dress?
I didn’t have a style in mind when I was looking for a dress but I knew I wanted something classic, elegant, timeless with a modern twist. So many of Vera Wang’s gowns fitted this description so I knew it would be a hard decision.

What made you decide on your Vera Wang gown?
I always dreamed of getting married in a Vera Wang wedding gown so I didn’t even consider other designers. For me they are the most breath-taking of any gowns.

Did you bring anyone along dress shopping? If so, did their opinions influence your final decision?
I brought along my Mother-in-Law and one of my bridesmaids and their opinions meant everything to me. I really took on board their comments and advice. After trying on various dresses, I finally walked out in Joan and they both had tears in their eyes! That was enough to help me decide this dress was the one.

How did you accessorize to make your wedding day outfit unique?
I wanted to keep my accessories to a minimum as I thought the dress made just the perfect statement. I wore diamond drop earring and a light short veil so the bows on the back of the dress could be seen.

What was the inspiration or theme for your wedding?
Our wedding took place on a tiny island off the coast of New Zealand. Both the ceremony and reception were held at a gorgeous hillside vineyard with sweeping views of the ocean. We emphasized the rustic romantic feel of the vineyard and restaurant with open fires, fairy lights and lots of candles for a dream ambiance.

Did your gown style relate to any other design elements of the wedding (ie. cake, invitations, etc.)?
We used my gown as inspiration for our cake by including white satin ribbon around the cake from top to bottom. My bridesmaids dresses, which were also Vera Wang, inspired the purple color theme and flowers for my wedding.

What was your favorite part of the day?
My favorite part of the day was the private moment before the ceremony that Ben and I first saw each other. It’s such a special memory and I’ll hold it in my heart forever.

What tips do you have for new brides picking out their wedding dress?
My advice would be to try on dresses in various styles even if they’re what you wouldn’t normally choose. Also, really take on board advice from the Vera Wang consultants as well as family and friends.

To be considered for inclusion in the Real Weddings section of Vera Unveiled, click here.

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