Gabriella and Pierre met in 2013. Pierre was in New Brunswick, NJ for his medical residency, and one day after a night shift he decided to go to church. Gabriella and Pierre met at lunch after the service, kept in touch and now they’ve been together for two years. Check out their special day captured by Justin Fullwood.
Bride: Gabriella Etienne, 23, Registered Nurse
Groom: Pierre Etienne, 28, Physician
Place of residence: Rockville, Maryland
Wedding date: 6/28/15
Wedding location: Brookside Gardens in Wheaton, Maryland
Wedding theme: Garden Theme: “Let Love Grow”
Honeymoon Destination: French Polynesian Islands
It was a cool November day and Pierre wanted to celebrate the anniversary of when we started our courtship. He told me he wanted to take me somewhere and then go to Uno’s for dinner, and me being easy going I was fine with it. He picked me up from the hospital and surprised me by taking me to Central Park where we had our first date. We decided we would walk around and visit the same places we went to back then. At each stop he gave me a gift, things he knew would mean a lot to me. Our final stop was at Central Park’s “Shakespeare Garden,” where my last gift was buried in a box after box. I kept opening them thinking each was something else, only to find another box. I got to the smallest box and still had no idea! I actually shook it out of its package almost dropping it when he took it and got on one knee. I also had no idea that there were two photographers that came out of the bushes who were catching the entire thing! Of course, I said “Yes!” and we had a mini photoshoot at Belvedere Castle right next to the garden. Afterward, we had a romantic dinner with candles and rose petals and delicious food at Manhattan's “Isabelle’s” Turned out that Uno’s was a coverup.
From the Bride:
It’s almost like the day flew by. I was feeling all kinds of emotions, but the strongest by far was excitement! I hadn’t spoken to or heard from Pierre all day, not to mention his groomsmen were being super secretive and elusive. It was truly great to meet him down the aisle and celebrate our love with our family and loved ones. I found out the groomsmen were being so secretive because they were all helping Pierre with what I later found out were the elaborate surprise decorations to the hotel wedding suite (all of which was unknown to me, including the hotel). It was really nice! He basically took an idea of something I always wanted (and I thought he hated) and made it come to life in such a beautiful way.
Most memorable moment:
Literally, right at the exact moment as our Officiant said “you may kiss the bride” a gentle breeze blew and lifted my veil as Pierre began to reach for it. It honestly seemed like something out of a cheesy movie, but the moment was perfect! We then sealed our love with a kiss.
From the Groom:
I was all around happy. We had been preparing so much we had barely gotten to embrace the actual moment that was about to happen. But when she walked down that aisle… she was amazing. Things didn’t go completely as planned, yet everything went well all at the same time. Every part, every moment was great.
“Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran. The words of this song truly mean a lot to Pierre and I. It captured the genuineness of our dedication to each other, and the spontaneity of how we truly found love right where we were, unexpectedly.
Favorite wedding detail:
We really enjoyed our wedding venue, the gardens were beautiful, not to mention the food! Our caterers did a fantastic job. Gabby’s favorite thing was our wedding favors and how they encouraged our guests to “Let Love Grow," Pierre’s favorite detail was the dancing! Gabby is Grenadian with Guyanese background and Pierre is Haitian so we had a nice mix of music.
What are you most looking forward to as a married couple?
Gabby: I look forward to growing old with my husband. I know it probably sounds cliche, but he really is a character and certainly is a joy to be around. I look forward to sharing and inspiring others to love as well; marriage is hard work, but it is also a very beautiful gift.
Pierre: Lots of babies. Just kidding (well kind of)! I look forward to truly learning what it means to love her more and more, in this day and age when love and marriage aren't understood or cherished as much. Especially as a man. And what she said; letting our love grow and hopefully inspire others to believe in love.
Advice for a Bride/Groom on their wedding day:
For the Bride:
Delegating certain tasks to your family and close friends will decrease your stress load for sure.
For the Groom:
People might stress your bride out so much she can’t enjoy her weekend. Your mission is to protect her from said people! And have fun too. Oh and get counseling. It's like getting a car inspected or tuned up. No need to wait for an issue to do it. It will (if with a good counselor) help you feel less nervous about "the plunge."
Congrats to the newlyweds Gabriella and Pierre. We wish you many more years of wedded bliss!
Photographer: Justin Fullwood
Videographer: Chip Dizard
Ceremony and reception location: Brookside Gardens, Wheaton, Maryland
Bridal gown: David’s Bridal
Bridal party attire: Foxy Girl LTD
Groom’s tux: Vera Wang / Men’s Wearhouse
Cake: Weakness For Sweetness, Greenbelt, MD
Caterer: R&R Catering, Springfield VA
Music: Trey Douglas
Hair and makeup: Shervonne Carrington
Flowers and Decor: Rosslyn Fernandez Burrs – Promising Memories Events
Stationery: Postable.com and Staples
Wedding Counseling: Pastor Richards
Limousine Company: Prestige Executive Transportation Services
Website Company: Wedding Window