Love in Translation

Real Wedding: Regina and Matthieu

For Regina and Matthieu, deciding to get married was a breeze. The challenges came in planning a cross-cultural wedding halfway across the globe from the couple’s San Francisco home.

Matthieu “preliminarily” proposed to Regina a mere two weeks into dating. It was followed by a beachside engagement in St. Maarten a few months later to make it official. 

Both knew that they wanted an intimate destination wedding for their celebration. Initially Matthieu suggested Hawaii, but with a little research, Regina knew that what she really wanted was the romance of a ceremony in the French countryside.

The couple found a 13th century chateau that was both beautiful and close to Matthieu’s family in Lyon. Once they had the location booked, the real planning could begin.

Working on the event from several time zones and an entire language away, Regina adopted a relaxed approach from the start. “I didn’t get too tied up about how everything had to be just so,” she shares. She decided to use local vendors as much as possible, even when some, like her florist, spoke no English at all. “Some ideas may have been lost in translation,” she laughs.

She also found that customs varied over the Atlantic. In France there is no rehearsal held the day before the event, and the groomsmen are not accustomed to wearing matching attire. Still, with the help of local wedding coordinator Hazel Bourget, they were able to pull off a fabulous event for 80 guests with only a single in-person visit before the big day.

For her walk down the aisle on June 16th, 2012, Regina wore a lace Casablanca wedding gown that was light enough to keep her cool during the sun-drenched garden ceremony. She finished her look with a Giao Nguyen silk flower in her hair and shoes custom-made to match her dress by a Parisian shoemaker, Mademoiselle Rose.