Now that it’s crystal clear that hosting a big wedding at this time is just not possible due to the spread of COVID-19, we’re sharing the experiences of real couples navigating the re-scheduling, cancellation, and civil and commemorative wedding processes in an attempt to help others make informed decisions and to spread our support to all during this time.
Sarah Requa and Samuel Finley Ewing IV planned their wedding not once, not twice, but three times in the midst of COVID-19.
Sarah reveled in the wedding planning process at first. “It was exciting to plan all the details that go into a wedding,” she says. They originally scheduled their Santa Lucia Preserve wedding for May 2, 2020, but shortly after COVID-19 sent the world into lockdown in March, the couple postponed. The decision was difficult to make, but their primary concern was to protect their guests. Their rescheduled October 3rd wedding, however, was canceled by the venue.
At this point in time, the couple’s planner, Sara Fay Egan, and her assistant managed the wedding planning logistics and configured the couple’s Plan C. “I was so grateful that they were there to arrange everything because after the first cancellation, I stopped caring about the details and was just excited to be able to have a wedding at all!” Sarah admits.
Even though their micro-wedding plans involved a smaller guest list limited to immediate family, the couple still wanted to include their original guests in the day’s festivities. They sent their extended family and friends champagne and flutes to toast the nuptials from afar.
On August 15th, Sarah and Finley had their micro-wedding underneath the magical redwood trees in Carmel, California. “The giant redwood trees among us had been there for centuries and felt so full of history,” Sarah marvels. “You feel so small within them, and it made a perfect setting for an intimate wedding.”
While their wedding day plans had been in constant flux, Sarah always knew that she would wear the ethereal Monique Lhuillier “Lovely” gown. It had been love at first sight for her, ever since she laid eyes on the dress at Casa de Novia in Houston. Unbeknownst to Sarah until the reception, Finley had arranged for a personal embroidered message to be sewn into her wedding dress. She wore a matching lace veil atop her bun. Sarah kept her hair and makeup simple and natural, trusting L.B. Rosser to craft her look. For jewelry, she planned on wearing her mother’s diamond studs, but Finley gave Sarah her very own on their wedding day. Sarah’s father gave her his late mother’s pale blue stone ring, and her stepfather gifted her a diamond bracelet. Together, these served as her something blue and her something new! Her flowers were arranged by Fionna Floral.
The groom wore a navy blue Armani tuxedo with a black Tom Ford bow tie. He completed the look with custom black ostrich cowboy boots from Dallas bootmaker Roma’s. On each side of the bootstrap, his initials and Sarah’s were painted along with their multiple wedding dates. He gave each of his groomsmen their own custom boots as well.
Sarah’s four bridesmaids chose their own Jenny Yoo silhouette in the Morning Mist shade. Finley’s groomsmen wore blue suits of their choosing. Their dog, Phoebe, was the couple’s flower girl, and she wore a stunning floral collar and leash.
Before the ceremony began, guests drank champagne and mingled from beneath the redwood trees while they waited for the processional. Sarah walked down the aisle with her stepfather and father at different parts of the path. Her bridal walk was actually the first time she saw the ceremony set-up. “It was magical,” she extols. Sarah met her groom, matron of honor, sister, Finley’s brother, and her little nephew, Hudson, at the altar. (Hudson decided at the last minute to join!) The couple’s friend and church elder, Kit Case, officiated the ceremony—his first wedding. “He did a beautiful job,” Sarah says. “Then we exchanged rings, kissed, and soaked in all of the love surrounding us.”
Once married, Sarah and Finley absconded in a classic car from Monterey Touring Vehicles. The party continued at Sarah’s family’s home, overlooking Monterey Bay. Guests ate catered meals from the Santa Lucia Preserve, along with their own personal petite wedding cakes. The couple cut into two cakes baked by Edith Meyer Wedding Cakes. In a perfect homage to Pebble Beach resident’s favorite pastime, the groom’s cake was golf-themed. The rest of the night was a magnificent blur of dining and dancing.
Their micro-wedding was not the original wedding Sarah and Finley first planned, but the couple couldn’t be more pleased with the day. “It all happened exactly the way it was supposed to, and I don’t know how I ever wanted anything different!” Sarah says. “It was amazing to see our closest family members come together and spend true quality time together. We left as one big happy family, and it was the sweetest feeling.”