Kristen Wearing The Ari Dress

How did you meet the love of your life?

My best friend Leanna and I were both single and living in downtown Vancouver. One night, we were walking down the Granville Street strip looking for a bar to head into. We walked by an old spot we used to go and noticed it was called something different now! The bouncer urged us to come inside and we would get a free drink, and when you live downtown Vancouver, ANYTHING free is great. We walked in and there was NOT A SOUL IN SIGHT besides the bartender. We sighed. Guess this was not going to be the place we both found some guys to chat with. We got our free drinks and sat down on a couch. About 5 minutes later, 2 guys walk in (likely to have been lured by the free drink offer as well) and I just CANNOT take my eyes off one of them. First of all, he was tall, dark and handsome, but second of all, HE WAS WEARING HIKING BOOTS. IN A CLUB. I just had to talk to him, and he just had to talk to me. And that was it! Leanna so kindly played wing-woman and entertained the other guy (who turned out to be very very strange) while Brandon and I dove right into conversation, dancing, and falling fast for each other.

When did you know they had stolen your heart?

Well, the fact that he was wearing hiking boots into a club was the first moment, but the second moment was when we got pizza afterwards and he agreed to share CHEESE pizza with me. Everyone makes fun of me for being basic, but I just love cheese pizza! To this day, cheese pizza is still our go-to :)

Tell us the story of the proposal!

We were on a 10-day truck-camping roadtrip from Vancouver, BC down to San Francisco and back! Brandon had created a Whatsapp group chat with my best friends to ask their advice on the ring and to let them know that he was going to propose while we were on our roadtrip. Before we left on the trip, he made sure to ask for my dad's permission and blessing as well :) We had an amaaazing time exploring central Washington, Oregon and California. On our way back, we rode the coast the whole way home and on our last day, we were on the Oregon coast in Florence. We packed a dinner picnic, a bottle of wine and headed for the sand dunes! It was a bit of a cloudy, cold day which was perfectly in our favour because we had the entire dunes to ourselves! After dinner and some wine, he told me to put on one of our playlists and that we should go walk to the ocean. Next to the speaker, he sneakily placed his phone in his shoe and hit record! He had the entire thing recorded and it was perfect. We ran about, frolicked, and of course, he got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife!!

How long was your engagement? What went into the decision about date and location?

Our engagement was 2 years. We thought long and hard about what the perfect wedding would be for us and we settled on an intimate 25-person weekend away to a local Island off of the coast of Vancouver. We had it all planned, rented a few airbnbs for our families + friends, and a BEAUTIFUL mansion on a cliffside where we would get married and stay. But then COVID hit, and while our wedding was still technically well under the recommended number for a gathering, we still ended up cancelling for the consideration of our guests' wellbeing and comfortability. Our date was 8.8.2020 - I am big into spirituality and we wanted a strong number. This date was still really important to us, and we didn't want to wait to get married. We ended up planning a magical heli-lopement in Whistler, BC and it was the best decision. A tough decision though, having to let our families know that we weren't going through with a traditional ceremony. But we did have a lot our initial guest list meet us up in Whistler for the night for a casual dinner afterwards!

How would you describe your personal style?  What were the most important factors for you as you considered how you wanted your bridal look to manifest?

My personal style is pretty relaxed and perhaps a little bit tomboy-ish. I LOVE hiking, so a lot of my clothes reflect that lifestyle. But, I DO love a red lip and to surprise people with my more feminine side sometimes too ;) It was very important for my bridal look to reflect a classic, relaxed beauty while still having a 'stunning' wow factor to it.

How did you find Wear Your Love?

I always wanted a long sleeve, lace dress. I think that has always been the most important thing for me, and I did a lot of research online about which stores had this type of dress in stock for me to try on. I stumbled upon Wear Your Love during my research and I INSTANTLY fell in love with the Ari dress. I couldn't believe I had found a dress so beautiful and perfect. But then I started to wonder if it just looked absolutely stunning on the model - afterall, my body is not like hers at all. I looked at many other dress options online but kept coming back to the Ari. I finally followed my gut instinct and ordered it! (spoiler: I think it looked stunning on me as well) ;)

When did you know you had found your perfect dress?

The moment I saw it online. There was nothing like it.

What went through your mind when the Wear Your Love box arrived at your doorstep, and you pulled out your dress for the first time?

This is a tough question. When I received my Wear Your Love box, I was absolutely thrilled and couldn't believe it was finally here! I opened the box and looked at it, but I knew that I wanted to try it on in front of my mom (who I was going to see that weekend). I also really wanted to take a picture of me in it and show my grandma (who I was visiting that Sunday) because her and my grandpa actually bought my dress for me. They were both aging, and not in the greatest health so they decided to give all of us grandchildren some money while they were still here. Unfortunately, my grandma never got a chance to see me in my dress. She passed away that Saturday, and I did not try my dress on in front of my mom, I was far too emotional. I couldn't try the dress on for weeks, I just knew that the right moment would come. And it did, about a week before my wedding! I know, I know, very last minute, but I was able to try it on with my grandma's jewelry, which made it the most special and WAS the right moment to wait for!

What is the name of the dress, and did you request any custom aspects?

The Ari!

What was your wedding theme or style?

Our wedding style was adventurous yet elegant.

How involved was your love in the planning? Did your families help with planning? Did you hire a co-ordinator, planner, or event stylist?

I did the majority of the planning! Did not hire a coordinator.

Let's show your wedding venue some love! What is the name of the wedding venue you chose and why did you choose it for your special day?

Oh my goodness, our wedding 'venue' was a glacier, and it was stunning. This location is called Rainbow Glacier up in Whistler, BC and we flew up with Blackcomb Helicopters. They were absolutely amazing to work with and fly with.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

My favorite moment of the day was our vows. Brandon's were absolutely beautiful, mine made him cry, and we almost forgot the rings back at the helicopter!!! (We had hiked about 5 minutes away to our ceremony location) After our officiant finished his opening speech, I quietly panicked and then mentioned to him that we had forgotten the ring box back at the helicopter. He IMMEDIATELY ran back there to retrieve it for us!!!) Such a great day, so many truly authentic, beautiful moments!

Who was involved in your special day? We'd love to shout out to all your favorite vendors!

Our rockstar photographers: Bowline Photography (@bowlinephoto) The venue / vehicle: Blackcomb Helicopters (@blackcombhelicopters) Our officiant: Whistler Steve (@whistler_steve) My amazing hair and makeup artist: Colleen Conroy (@colleenconroymakeup) Our beautiful florals: Senka Florist (@senka_florist)

Do you have any advice or words of wisdom for anyone planning a wedding?

My advice to future brides planning their wedding is 'do what you and your fiancé truly want'. It is so easy to get caught up in others' ideas of what your wedding should look like but it is YOUR day, so stay true to the 2 of you to your cores!

Now that you can look back with 20/20 hindsight, was there anything you'd do differently?

Not at all. We rolled with the waves of 2020 and it ended up more perfectly than we ever thought possible.

What's your favorite thing about being married so far?

My favorite thing about being married is calling him my HUSBAND! So cool.

Kristen is wearing The Ari in nude lining with a 12 inch sweep train.