Through mutual friends and a shared appreciation for San Francisco’s food and music, Jennifer Jermain and Michael “Mick” MacLaverty first connected and started dating. Their courtship spanned six years, shuffling between San Francisco and Los Angeles, before he proposed to Jennifer at Ocean Beach.
On one morning in June 2020, Jen unwrapped her usual breakfast sandwich order from Yonkers Cafe and discovered an engagement ring box. The ring featured two diamonds from his great-grandmother’s Irish engagement ring. After saying yes, Jen could not wait to share the news. She called her nearest and dearest, only to discover that not even one of her three sisters was answering the phone. Sure enough, when Jen and Mick went to the wine country later that day, all of her sisters and Mick’s brother were there to celebrate the engagement with them at the Carneros Inn.
COVID-19 restrictions were the first things they considered while planning their wedding. Both Jen and Mick come from large, close-knit families, so narrowing a guest list to a mere fifty people was incredibly challenging. Jen’s first cousins would take up half of the guest list alone. But obeying the guidelines during the pandemic was a priority.
Jen spent her summers on Nantucket growing up, and Mick spent his at his family’s home on the Cape. Squam Head is one of their favorite areas. “June weather on Nantucket can be iffy,” Jen concedes, “But our attitude going in was that we lived in San Francisco, and if you can handle a summer there, you can handle it anywhere.”
Luckily, one of Jen’s sisters has event planning expertise and offered to help. Jen admits that organizing the wedding was a family affair. “And there were definitely snafus along the way,” she laughs. “It is part of having a wedding on a little island thirty miles out to sea!”
Jen searched all over Los Angeles for her wedding dress. Finally, at her last planned stop, she found the perfect one at Oscar de la Renta. The gown’s intricate detail and neckline were what compelled her. Because the dress was so eye-catching on its own, Jen kept her makeup simple and her jewelry minimal with diamond studs. She slid on Alexandre Birman heels to tie the look together.
Mick wore a custom tuxedo ensemble by Shayq Bespoke in Los Angeles, which was a gleeful designing process with their team from start to finish. For a finishing final flair, Jen embroidered a quote from one of their favorite New Yorker cartoons inside the jacket.
Jen let her three sisters and sister-in-law choose what they wanted to wear, and they dressed for the occasion. They wore a mix of colorful dresses by Johanna Ortiz, Zimmermann, and Self-Portrait. Jen’s mother wore an eyelet Zimmermann dress. Jen’s nieces, Eadie and Shea, wore bespoke white linen dresses with blue hand-embroidered scalloped detail from Amaia. Jen’s nephew, Hank, wore a navy suit from J. Crew for his ring bearer duties.
On June 11, 2021, the Nantucket weather ended up being perfect. The couple’s fifty guests stayed in Sconset and around town where custom straw welcome bags were delivered to them with LouLou Baker Nantucket playing cards, Aunt Leah’s fudge, and other treats for the weekend.
The Catholic ceremony took place at Siaconset Union Chapel. Father John, known for his amazing homilies, conducted a beautiful mass that the couple’s many family and friends could listen to over the chapel’s live cam. Siasconset Chapel is known and beloved for its needlepoint kneelers. Jen is related to quite a few talented needlepointers. Her great-grandmother has a needlepoint kneeler in the Washington National Cathedral, and Jen’s mother even needlepointed the ring bearer pillow her nephew held. Jen and Mick treasure this pillow and actually use it today as an accent pillow.
When Jen and her father stepped out of the Wauwinet Woody, Jen honestly felt a little frazzled. A car got stuck in a pothole, blocking their exit. “I’ll never forget my Dad trying to dig out the tires fifteen minutes before we had to leave for the ceremony,” Jen recalls. But once she walked down the aisle, Jen felt so relaxed when she saw Mick. He was smiling ear-to-ear the whole time. “Days after the wedding, it was so fun to read through our group chats,” she says. “Some of our friends who were watching virtually gave live play-by-play of the ceremony which was fun to look back on!”
The reception was held at The Chanticleer in Sconset. The wedding party procession went from the chapel to the restaurant across the street. “For the aesthetic of the reception, I really wanted the venue to speak for itself since The Chanticleer has the best gardens in town,” Jen notes. “I chose a clear tent by Nantucket Tents, classic La Tavola linens with rattan chargers, and florals that were timeless and unfussy. I just loved the beautiful simplicity of it all.”
Cocktail hour commenced in the front garden, right beside the roses and peonies in full bloom. Dinner came shortly after underneath the tent. “As a couple, we aren’t big fans of cake,” Jen dishes. “So instead, we shared a private moment cutting into a key lime pie with the same knife my parents used on their wedding day.” Guests were served espresso martinis and individual helpings of Marco Pierre White’s Eton Mess for dessert. Riotous toasts from Jen’s father and sister and Mick’s brother kept the whole party in stitches. Mick thanked everyone before initiating the next round of celebration…an epic dance party led by the Sultans band. The newly-minted Mr. and Mrs. MacLaverty shared their first dance to Tyler Childers’s “All Your’n,” which the Sultans learned just for them.
Guests bussed into town to continue the evening at the Lobster Trap. The following night, the wedding weekend concluded with a final party in Squam. Millie’s catered the event at the house and Hang Ten Raw Bar provided fresh seafood, including local oysters from Pocomo Meadow Oyster Farm. After a rare and magical Nantucket sunset, the night ended with kegs in the sand.
Jen’s sister insisted that everyone dress up in their wedding attire for one last photo shoot at Great Point. “Mick and I were so annoyed with her for making us do that shoot but ended up having so much fun!” Jen confesses. “And, who doesn’t love an excuse to wear the dress of their dreams one last time? I seriously recommend every bride and groom do this!”