Can never-sleeping California look like picturesque provincial Tuscany? Definitely! And the wedding of Kristina and Mariusz is proof of that. Cypress trees, tiled roofs, a long table that unites two families, refined Italian wedding looks of the bride and groom, and a party under the light of garlands. We asked Kristina about all the details of the preparations for the wedding, as well as her love story with Mariusz.
How did you meet?
Our love story began in Chicago, back in 2018. Mariusz’s sister played the role of the matchmaker who brought the happy couple together. While working at Nordstrom, I was adding the final touches to Edyta’s makeup, and Edyta asked for my phone number. I initially declined Edyta’s request, but Edyta persisted. Eventually, she snatched a business card from my desk and forwarded it to Mariusz. She then showed me a photo of Mariusz, and the match was made! Said Edyta about the photo presentation moment: “I saw the sparkle in her eyes and I knew that this was a beautiful potential for the both of them.” And that’s how it all started. Edyta’s request eventually became our first date. That first date turned into many more. We spent more and more time together, becoming the closest of friends.
Where did he propose?
Four years worth of memories later, Mariusz planned for my family, his sister (the matchmaker), and me to fly to California to celebrate my birthday (as we have ritually done every November 13th). As we landed in LA, Mariusz surprised me with a white convertible car. We drove to Laguna Hills, where Mariusz had told me that we need to pick up the keys to the small house we rented. Much to my surprise, we arrived at a huge mansion. I was astonished at how beautiful it was and went to look for the bathroom as we entered to “get the keys”. Mariusz and his sister then broke the news to me: “We are staying here!” The next day (on my birthday), Mariusz told Kristina that he made a dinner reservation with the family at “Montage” restaurant, and asked me to wear white to match his outfit. I dressed for dinner and as I went downstairs, I heard an Andrea Bocelli song, saw beautiful candles and flowers on the floor, and realized Mariusz was awaiting me, ready to go down to a knee. Short of getting Bocelli to appear in person to sing for the moment, what more could Mariusz have arranged for the occasion? He proposed and of course, the answer was “yes”! I was startled by how well-planned everything was, seriously the most magical few hours of my life. It was so sweet, romantic, intimate, and thoughtful. It was a trip of a lifetime.
Tell us a little about yourselves.
We are not just lovers but truly best friends. We are a couple who loves to travel and capture authentic moments that tell a unique story for years to come. We love making fun new recipes, playing tourists in our hometown, trying new restaurants, and sometimes just turning the light off and watching a movie on a harsh winter night.
What do you do for a living?
Mariusz owns Mprodesign, which is a construction/remodeling business and Kristina is a makeup artist.
What was the concept behind your wedding and how did you find your inspiration?
We wanted a timeless, intimate, and chic wedding, free of trends. We wanted to look back and not regret anything in the years to come. We found inspiration from the traditional Italian culture. We also wanted our wedding to be very laid back and relaxed so we had a little interactive area by the bar where our guests were able to grab a drink and enjoy the ambiance of our Italian venue. Our guest also had an opportunity to mingle with our French chef Didier while he was crafting hors d’oeuvre. We wanted to give our guests a great memory of the day.
Where was your wedding? Why did you choose this venue?
We got married in a private estate right outside of Healdsburg, in Geyserville called “Tuscan Retreat”. We were looking for a Tuscan/European-inspired venue and this location effortlessly reflected the mood of our wedding. We both wanted to get married in Italy, but we knew the logistics wouldn’t be easy, as most of our friends and family are based in Chicago. Mariusz and I both love California and since Sonoma county is known for its resemblance to Tuscany Italy, we knew we had to get married in California! When we first walked into the private estate, my jaw dropped. My husband was recording the place and you could hear me in the background shouting “We found our dream venue, this is it.” In every single venue we visited, we felt that it was missing something but this one had it all for us. It truly felt like we were in Tuscany, Italy. The ceremony took place on the villa’s property surrounded by cypress trees. We exchanged vows in front of two pillars accented with white blooms. It all felt charming enough for the romantic moment. After the ceremony, we kicked the celebration off with a champagne tower display where we danced, laughed, and served our guests some celebratory bubbly. The beautiful location added to the overall look. The sun was setting just as we sat down to dinner. It was magical and romantic.
How many guests did you have?
We had an intimate wedding of 35 guests. We both wanted to spend a whole weekend with our closest friends and family. Since all of our guests had to travel to celebrate with us we wanted to create an unforgettable experience and express our gratitude by dedicating the quality time they deserved. Everything was designed to create beautiful memories that we would cherish forever.
Tell us about your outfits.
I have a very timeless, elegant, and classic style so I wanted my wedding dress to be the purest reflection of my personality. I wore a silk satin dress designed by Romona Keveža that I bought from Dimitra’s Bridal Couture in Chicago. I paired my gown with Chanel pearl earrings, a royal custom-made veil that my mom and I worked on for 6 months with a little help from our friend that is a tailor, and Valentino Garavani platform heels. I loved a lot of things about my dress, but if I had to pick a favorite, it would be the silk satin fabric of the dress and the handmade veil. It was truly the most beautiful veil I’ve ever seen. Mariusz opted for a white tuxedo jacket by Georgio Armani and black pants by The Black Tux. Mariusz later switched to a black velvet blazer at night.
What was your first dance song?
Our first dance song was by Demis Roussos “Come waltz with me.” We both wanted a classic and romantic ballroom dance so we took dancing classes for a few months before the wedding and we did a waltz dance.
What flowers did you choose for the bride's bouquet and why?
I wanted a small, romantic, and delicate bouquet. Our florist Melissa used white lisianthus, tweedia, and white astilbe flower for it.
What was your wedding cake like? And where did you order it?
We wanted a cake that exemplifies elegance, so we picked a double-tiered white ripple coconut & passion fruit cake adorned with simple flowers. We ordered from Pascaline Patisserie & Café which is a charming French gastronomic gem in Healdsburg, CA. Our wedding was completed with Italian touches like a gelato cart. To further add to the authenticity of the Italian nuptials, we offered pizza as a late-night snack while our DJ played “That’s Amore” by Dean Martin which was the song that a woman sang on our gondola ride in Vegas when Mariusz asked me to be officially his girlfriend. We also had all our guests hold sparklers as we were cutting the cake.
Are there any vendors that you would like to tell us a little more about?
Everything was exquisite! The staff was the best, the space was divine and the food was out of this world, and Alli our wedding planner was able to do everything we wanted and more! She truly brought our vision to life while letting the gorgeous Italian villa shine.