Joanna and Alec’s Romantic Boho Beach Wedding in Mexico by Daniela Ortiz Photography

Today’s wedding is an absolute dream, so full of amazing decor and the cutest couple ever, who met when they were 12 in 7th grade! Joanna and Alec were married on 7th January 2021 in Los Cabos, Mexico. The couple are from Chicago but dreamed of a laid back beach wedding where they could leave the worries of the pandemic behind and relax into their beauty of a day. With the help of their super talented wedding planner and team of amazing suppliers, they filled their day with the most stunning decoration along with the most beautiful flowers. The whole day really is amazing! Big thanks to Daniela Ortiz Photography for the amazing images.

How they met and the proposal
Alec and I met in 7th grade (12 years old) when I transferred to the same grade school as him. We started our relationship in 8th grade (13 years old) as a couple. We went to different highs schools and our relationship was challenged because of that. But we were able to make it work and our relationship became stronger as time went on. – Alec and I love to travel. I planned a weekend getaway filled with outdoor activities in Arizona, Utah, and Nevada. On day 3 of the trip, we woke up before sunrise to drive to Horseshoe Bend in Arizona. I knew the sunrise pictures would look amazing with the views. We walked around and took in the beautiful sights. When we were ready to leave, Alec suggested we take one more picture, and that is when he got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. I was in shock because I usually figure out surprises before they can surprise me! Anyways, of course I said yes! We spent the night celebrating in Las Vegas. A true way to celebrate indeed!

The outfits
My wedding dress was from designer Martina Liana. My mother works at the bridal boutique Wolsfelt’s Bridal in Aurora, IL. I knew I had to get a dress from there. My style is eclectic, but I knew I had to pick something that would match the Cabo vibe from my perspective. The sheer bodice, sheer lace cutouts, and v-neckline gave off sexy and bold elements. In contrast, the skirt and back of the gown had beautiful botanical lace that gave me romantic and boho vibes. It was the perfect combination for a destination wedding.

Theme or colour scheme
We had an intimate wedding of 35 guests at Pueblo Bonito Sunset Beach in Cabo San Lucas, Mexico on January 7, 2021. The ceremony was in the chapel at the resort. The reception was at the upper skydeck pool. The wedding was a romantic boho vibe, influenced by our lifestyle. The color scheme was neutral colors with shades of pink. We had no bridal party, but we had our immediate family members wear colors that would match the color scheme. Before the ceremony, as a Polish wedding tradition, a crucifix and holy water was used by our parents to perform a blessing and symbolic farewell. We also did a version of the Polish “brama” or gate, which Alec’s friends paid my family with bottles of alcohol and cash to open the gate for us to be together. The ceremony was traditional Catholic and in the chapel at the resort.

Having a wedding planner was key, especially since the pandemic prevented us from travelling to Cabo to take an active hands-on role with the planning process. In this case, the wedding planner was Pamela with Look At Me Brides. I sent her photos of décor that I really liked and she turned the vision into reality. That is why I cried when I saw the reception space in person on the day! I wanted it to be a romantic boho vibe. The ceremony space at the chapel only had a white carpet and pampas grass at the entrance but was otherwise left as is with its enchanting décor. The guest book was a personalized Polaroid album so guests could take a picture with my Polaroid camera and place it in the book with a message. The sweetheart table for the bride and groom was also something I really wanted as statement piece. Finally, the twinkle lights over the dancefloor contributed to that romantic, under-the-stars vibe that made it dreamy all night! Pamela and her team really turned my vision into a reality.

The florals really did not play a large role to me during the planning process. I sent Pamela my inspiration, and mentioned I liked roses and pampas grass. When I saw my bridal bouquet, I was truly stunned with the size and beauty of it. It incorporated everything I enjoyed, and I did not even realize until that moment how important the flowers were to my bridal look and the overall look of the wedding! The centerpieces were also medium sized, filled with neutral and pink florals. The seating chart had a large arrangement with pampas grass that was stunning for guests to see as they entered the space.

Personal touches
For Polish weddings in Chicago, there is usually a bottle of cytrynowka (homemade lemon vodka) on each table. Having an intimate destination wedding, I did not plan for this tradition. However, my sister surprised us and brought a bottle of store-bought cytrynowka for the wedding. We took shots of it all night long, or until it ran out! Another fun part of the wedding was the dance floor. Music is so important to us, and DJ Antonio Floren really understood our musical preferences and tastes to curate the best playlist. From Polish dancing music to our favorite EDM songs, we had so much fun dancing the night away!

Special Moments
The most special moment of the wedding was the first look with each other. I think it really put into perspective the reality of the moment and day. Our wedding was a day we were looking forward to for the majority of our relationship, and up until that moment it did not feel real. Once we saw each other, we knew that one of the happiest days of our lives together was finally taking place. It was extremely intimate and special, and a moment we will cherish forever.

Advice for other couples
For destination weddings, I highly recommend hiring a wedding planner. We would not be able to have our dream wedding without one. With Alec owning his own company and with me working as an ICU nurse full time and in graduate school part time, it was difficult to plan a wedding on top of all that. Having a wedding planner made it way less stressful! – Another takeaway is to have the wedding that you want to have. I received some negativity at first from my parents for choosing to have a wedding in another country. They tried to convince me to have it in Chicago, but I stressed that it was our wedding, and we were going to do what we wanted for it. My parents traveled to Cabo for our wedding, and they had an amazing time and really enjoyed themselves. Other family members and friends did not come because of their perspectives on the pandemic, but we chose to move forward with our destination wedding because it was our decision at the end of the day.



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