It is a whole new week of Four Weddings on TLC! This week we meet brides- Heather, Mary, Aretha and Kelly. A fall wedding is a running theme throughout and each bride is judged on venue, dress and food by the other three brides in hopes that they might win the grand prize of a dream honeymoon. Let’s get started!
First up on the judging block is Kelly with her Halloween day nuptials. Self-described anti-bride Kelly has a budget of $25k and 90 guests. Having met her fiance at a funeral these two are all about incorporating black and white, tiny skeletons and candles into their decor. The brides loved the 19th Century Inn that Kelly chose for her ceremony and reception. The soft glow from the many candles and original fall centerpieces- four types total- were a big hit. Points came off for a creepy, crawly cocktail hour that had boring cheese platters and no seats. This ghostly gala lost more points for the plain food and guests in costume (“It takes away from the bride!”) but Kelly gained a few points when she debuted her chocolate fountain and candy bar that allowed guests to go trick or treating. In all they gave her a score of a 4, 4, and 6.
Heather’s 350 person wedding with a $65k budget came next. Held at a New York wedding hall this affair had it all. Guests were treated to views of the happy couple and wedding party having their photos taken before the ceremony, which wasn’t the best idea according to the other brides. However, they were wowed by the ceremony’s flower covered chuppah and unity candle that combined the Jewish and Catholic faiths of the bride and groom. Heather wore her mother’s cathedral length veil for a nice sentimental touch that added to the quiet but pretty ceremony. It was on to cocktail hour! Too many people and an overwhelming amount of food and choices (salmon and crab rolls! Pasta and more!) created full stomachs and crowding. The other brides couldn’t help but wonder, “What’s next?” How about lots of smoke, lights and a movable stair case to usher the newly married couple into the reception? Heather wowed them with her entrance and overwhelmed them again with the 11 entrees she offered at dinner. The addition of three more courses and a blinged out rhinestone covered cake was a bit much for the brides who awarded Heather a 7, 7, and 7.
Aretha aka “Married with Honors” works at Bergen College which is also where she held her wedding. A $5k budget with 250 guests is a tough job but the Horticulture and Catering department of the college agreed to help out a fellow friend and co-worker. Held outside in a beautiful campus gazebo, Aretha’s wedding is full of family, good music and even a bit of dancing. Her princess style dress won the other brides over and they loved the personal vows and her sons giving her away. Then it was on to the Technology building for cocktail hour and the reception. Decorated with more fall flowers in an original design the woman were pleased. They didn’t favor the plastic glasses and dinnerware though or the paper plates at the buffet style dinner. Having Aretha’s family cook the food made it a feast made from love but not a whole lot of choice. Points were taken away for a lack of options. In all the brides liked Aretha’s wedding for the music and dancing but not the food. Scores of 5, 4 and 5 were handed out.
Last we attend Mary’s wedding. She is the super emotional one who cried at the three other weddings. An Italian-Catholic wedding full of tradition and a $35k price tag had a late start but her gorgeous dress and glowing looks won over the three other brides. A cocktail hour at a nearby reception hall wooed the women with its waterfall and numerous choices of Italian fare. While the reception room was a tight squeeze it was kicked off with the Tartanella, a traditional Italian folk dance, that was loads of fun. The brides loved Mary’s offering of three entree choices and the ability to try the two other dishes, the outdoor fire pit with s’mores and dessert bar. The DJ’d reception had everyone dancing as well. They awarded her scores of 7, 6 and 6 despite a little bit of a “cookie-cutter” feel.
Then it was back to the mansion to pop some champagne and discuss the overall scores. Who would be the big winner tonight? Who would win the honeymoon of their dreams and be crowned fairest bride of all the land? OK, I just made up that last part but wouldn’t that add a new dimension to this show? Finally, we see the limo pull up and out steps a pair of men’s shoes. It’s Heather’s husband carrying a bouquet of pink roses! With a collective score of 82 points they are the winners of a trip to the Amalfi Coast in Italy. Applause all around and a few disappointed sighs from the other brides we see that Mary came in second, Kelly third and Aretha fourth.
Tune in next week for more brides, dresses, cocktail hours and glitter!