Grace Higgins and Matthew Naughton first met at a Halloween party in London. She had moved overseas after graduating from college, and he was studying political science. They quickly realized that they grew up five minutes from each other in Chicago, went to rival high schools, and had a handful of mutual friends. “Funny how you go thousands of miles to meet someone who grew up in your backyard,” Grace laughs. “My friends were expecting me to tell them that I had met my very own British prince at that Halloween party—not a Chicago boy dressed up in a Sheep onesie.”
After five years together, Matt proposed on Nantucket. They were walking on Steps Beach, when Grace’s younger brother popped up from behind some tall grass and yelled her name. She spun around, and when she turned back, Matt was down on one knee. She said yes, of course, and the newly engaged couple celebrated with their families at Cru and Cisco Brewery.
Nantucket has been a special place for the couple, even before their engagement. Matt’s father proposed to his mother on the island nearly 40 years ago. The couple has stayed at The Wauwinet on several special occasions, and they decided to tie the knot at this special waterfront venue with a tented reception. “If there is one to thing to know about me, it’s that I love color!” Grace exclaims. “I did not want a ‘cookie cutter blue and white’ Nantucket wedding. We curated lots of large colorful floral arrangements in and around the tent which created a fun and summery yet elevated atmosphere for our black-tie reception.”
To help bring their spring wedding to life, the couple hired local planner Aisling Glynn of ACKtivities. “Nantucket is known as one of the most logistically challenging places to plan a wedding—hiring a planner who has established relationships on the island—and who has seen it all!—was non-negotiable,” the bride shares. Ryan Ray was behind the lens all weekend, capturing every special moment, and Storybox Cinema took charge of moving pictures.
The weekend kicked off on Thursday with a sunset welcome party at The Wauwinet, followed by a bridal luncheon at The Chanticleer the next day. On Friday night, the couple held their rehearsal dinner and welcomed more guests at Straight Wharf Restaurant. To this, Grace wore her “something blue,” a custom taffeta dress by One/Of.
Grace turned to Over The Moon’s Styling Services, led by Kelly Russell Potts, to help her curate her rehearsal dinner, after-party, and bridesmaids’ mix-and-match looks. “Working with Kelly at OTM was so much fun. I am a fashion girl at heart and am very intentional about what I wear—but having a resource and second opinion was such a value add,” she says. “I particularly loved how Kelly curated the bridesmaids looks and worked so seamlessly with all my best girlfriends.”
For the wedding ceremony, Grace wore Monique Lhuillier’s Regency dress with a custom cape and veil and Amina Muaddi’s Ami pumps. “I fell in love with this dress when I tried it on, and we collaborated on the custom removable cape, which was unlike anything I had ever seen,” the bride says. Throughout the weekend, Grace got ready with the talented Claire Balest and her team to create stunning beauty looks.
Later on in the night, Grace changed into a bespoke One/Of dress with feathers and sequin embellishments. “[It] was one of the most amazing things I have ever worn,” she shares.
Matt was ready to say, “I do,” in a Ralph Lauren white wool dinner jacket with custom black tuxedo trousers and white shirt by Beyond Measure Custom.
On June 10, 2023, Grace and her father drove to Siasconset Chapel in a 1960s Porsche convertible. Then, they walked down the aisle to meet Matt and their dear friend and Jesuit priest who officiated the tear-jerking, special ceremony. The groom reflects that during the service he felt “blessed beyond belief and filled with joy.”
“I wish we could have paused time during the reception. Never in my life have I have felt joy like that,” Grace says of the soirée on the lawn of the hotel. “I cried when we made our entrance into the tent.” Sprawling florals by Tori Samuel and Mary Beth Ferro Floral Design decorated the space, and Julie King Studio and Li Ward complemented the decor with intricate stationery. The delicious oceanside dinner started with Topper’s famous lobster crab cake, followed by surf and turf for the main.
Rock & Soul of Starlight kept the dance floor packed for the entire night. “They completely surpassed our expectations and covered every genre under the sun,” Grace shares. The newlyweds had their romantic first dance to “Everlasting Love” by Natalie Cole, and then the bride enjoyed dancing on stage with her favorite people.
The after-party kicked off at Topper’s, which had been transformed into a nightclub with a deejay playing the couple’s favorite jams. The party didn’t end there! Dancing continued at a private cottage on the property.
After enjoying newlywed life for a couple of months, the two are headed to Africa for a safari honeymoon over Thanksgiving. Grace concludes, “The perfect way to celebrate our first holiday together.”