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This Bride Wore An Ethereal Valentino Dress to Her Wedding in Maine

By Alexandra Macon | Photography by 

Dana + Zak of Henry + Mac

Graham Dickson, the guitarist of the band Crystal Fighters, and Jocelyn “Jocie” Oppenheim, an architect, first met on Nantucket when they were just teenagers. “I was 14 and Graham was 15,” Jocie recalls. “The night we met, Graham and some friends picked me and my friend up at her house and drove us to a beach party. He always teases me because my friend and I spent most of the night in the car—I think we were nervous!” Even though the future couple went to the same high school together, it wasn’t until years later, when they had both graduated college, that they started a long distance relationship. (Graham was in London, while Jocie was based in New York.) He eventually made the big move to N.Y.C., and a few years later he proposed.

“It was a Wednesday morning and we were leaving the following day for a 10 day trip to Colombia,” she remembers. “I had just taken a shower and was in the bathroom when I heard Graham rustling and weirdly clearing his throat on the other side of the door. I opened it and he then unceremoniously popped the question! I was so surprised I forgot to say yes immediately. We called some family members to share the news and went out for a celebratory breakfast. I then headed to work—very late!”

They settled on a New Year’s Eve wedding and decided to get married in Rangeley, Maine, where Jocie’s parents have a cabin. “It is a secluded area of western Maine with gorgeous lakes and mountains,” she says. “We ended up getting married at the base lodge of Saddleback Mountain, which is a beautiful space, but also sentimental to me, as Saddleback is where I learned to ski and grew up skiing.” For help with the big day, she enlisted planner Paula Cano of A Family Affair and Megan Hevenor of Field Floral Studio.

Cano and Hevenor weren’t the only ones who helped with aesthetics though, Jocie had what she lovingly refers to as “three fashion fair godmothers” who assisted with her dress search: her sister-in-law, a designer at J.Crew, her sister, who worked for Rachel Comey at the time, and a friend of her sister’s, who works at Valentino. After some deliberating, she ultimately decided on a dress from Valentino’s 2016 ready-to-wear collection. “From the outset, I was open to the idea of not wearing white. I thought something silvery could look really gorgeous in the snow,” she explains. “I ended up finding gorgeous lace-up ballet boots from the same Valentino collection, too, which worked perfectly because I could wear them for the outdoor ceremony, but they were still delicate and comfortable enough to wear all night.” Because her dress had so much detail, Jocie kept her jewelry at a minimum and borrowed a pair of diamond studs from her mother, and then finished off her look with a pale pink Mongolian fur.

As for Graham, he wore a navy velvet Grosvenor jacket, black pants, and velvet slippers all from Favourbrook, which he had picked out on Savile Row in London. “The dinner jacket (also Favourbrook) that he wore to our rehearsal dinner was maybe the best, or at least the most fabulous, piece of clothing of the entire weekend!” Jocie adds. Meanwhile her bridesmaids were asked to wear black.

The day of the wedding, Jocie and Graham tied the knot outdoors (in the Maine winter, no less!), with her brother officiating the ceremony. “He did an incredible job of keeping it quick (it was cold!), but also really pulling everyone into it. To set the tone, he asked people to affirm their presence and support for me and Graham, and everyone began cheering,” she remembers. “Our mothers passed around sage to cleanse the space. We wrote our own vows and though neither of us are religious, my family is Jewish as is Graham’s mother, so we decided to break the glass, as a way to incorporate Judaism into the ceremony. It was windy and snowing during the ceremony—it really felt enchanted!”

During the cocktail hour that followed, guests were treated to hors d’oeuvres, as well as cheese and charcuterie platters, and a fondue station. Drinks included rosemary ginger tequila cocktails and hot spiked cider. For dinner, they went with a cozy winter family style meal that included beef short rib, whole Arctic char, local roasted squash, braised greens, and Parmesan risotto. “Neither Graham nor I are crazy about cake, so we opted for a dessert bar instead,” notes the bride. They served mini key lime pies, brownies, and blueberry sorbet, amongst other sweets.

After toasts, it was time for music, something Graham and Jocie are well-versed in. “We have so many extremely talented musician friends, we thought it would be special and intimate to have our guests provide the music rather than hiring a band,” she says. For their first dance, their friends formed a “one night only” band and played Taj Mahal’s “Corrina” and George Michael’s “Freedom.” Their friend Dave later took over as the evening’s DJ and used he and Graham’s extensive record collection to play most of the night’s songs. “Dave lugged his records from London!” Jocie laughs. And since their wedding took place on New Year’s Eve, at midnight they treated everyone to a big fireworks display. “Graham’s bandmate Bast did some impromptu drumming and singing during the fireworks, which added to the magic.”

Finally, after hours of dancing and refueling with late night pizza, everyone headed over to the “YOLO House,” where 20 or so friends were staying for the weekend, for the after-party. Another friend DJed for hours and everyone danced until the sun came up. “It was the most beautiful morning,” Jocie says. “Everyone walked back to their cabins in the early light.”