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A Warm Spring Beach Wedding on Captiva Island

By Shayna Seid | Photography by 

Anastasiia Photography

Megan Kirshner, who works in brand marketing at Free People, and Jake Beil met during college through a group of mutual friends, who they remain close with today. “I just wanted to be around him 24/7,” she says. Their relationship developed organically and instantly.

The two dated for five years, with a few bouts of long-distance between Cape Town, New York, and Philadelphia, before he proposed. He convinced her—fake invitation and all—that they were going to a family friend’s party, and when they got down to the beach, he went down on one knee.

When looking for wedding venues, the engaged couple thought of Captiva Island, since both of their families serendipitously had been going there for more than 15 years. “We like to say we probably met in kids club,” Megan remarks. To help plan their spring celebration with a warm aesthetic, they hired Kehrin Hassan of JETSETWED

For her trip down the aisle, Megan custom-made her dress with Cape Town designer Angelo Lambrou. “I wanted something super simple—à la Carolyn Bessette—so this was my way of making a white slip dress feel like truly mine,” the bride says. “I saw my dress come to life over FaceTime and finally received it three weeks before the wedding.”

For another unique element, she added a cape for the ceremony and wore no shoes. “I always knew I wanted to get married barefoot in the sand,” she says. Jake wasn’t as free-spirited as his future-wife with his look and wore brown shoes with his custom blue suit. 

On the beach, bridesmaids preceded Megan, wearing white BHLDN sets, and groomsmen were dressed in blue suits with pocket squares. Then the bride walked down the aisle and met Jake and their pastor at the floral, circular altar. “Before I saw her, all I could think was ‘Don’t cry too much,'” Jake says. “When we were together, I couldn’t wipe the smile from my face.”

Once announced as a married couple, the entire wedding party took a trolley to the cocktail hour, where oysters and passed appetizers were waiting on the lawn. Their reception was “all dancing with a side of dinner,” the bride says. One of their best friends kicked off the evening with a jumping split during Bruno Mars’s “Uptown Funk.” And Megan and Jake even cut the cake, complete with a Reese’s Puffs center, in private to maximize time on the dance floor.

The newlyweds had their first dance to “You’re My Best Friend” by Queen, sung by their friend, Mai, accompanied by the band. “We stumbled through the entire thing,” Megan says. “We have four left feet between us, and I’m terrible in heels!”

For the after-party, people headed to a tent, where two friends were deejaying off an iPhone. “That playlist will go down in history,” Megan says. “And then there was the after-after-party, where everyone huddled around a backyard bonfire and tiki bar until the sun came up.” The two made their golf cart getaway at around 4:00 a.m.