Gold Hat Photography: Anda & Dean


Combining an Orthodox ceremony with a sophisticated reception was just the ticket for Anda & Dean’s wedding (captured by Gold Hat Photography). Not to mention a bit of fun was had in between, with the couple arriving in a retro bus and minivan, and opting to have their wedding photography taken amidst graphic and lively graffiti. Read on for more details about this cool couple.

Tell us about the proposal

I wanted to do something special for my 30th birthday, so to celebrate we decided to go to Hawaii for nine nights. Dean and I are travel lovers and this wasn’t our first trip away together. However this was the first time a Man Bag was present on our trip. I didn’t think much of it even though he did keep drawing my attention to it asking if I thought it was cool. I was sure Dean would never propose overseas for fear of losing the ring itself, so I really didn’t care about his ‘cool, new Man Bag’. We arrived in Hawaii early and went for a bite to eat while waiting for our room to be made up. We’d heard that every Friday night one of the hotels near by lets off fireworks, so we said we’d go watch that night. Being a bit jet-lagged, as soon as the room was ready we took a nap. We woke up about half an hour before sunset. Dean was trying to rush me out of the room so we could walk along the beach and watch the sun. I didn’t understand why we needed to rush; we were in Hawaii for 9 more days! That’s 9 more sunsets and 1 more night of fireworks too! So, I took my time getting ready.

We strolled along the beach to the hotel and parked ourselves under a palm tree with a view of the ocean. Dean went to get us two Pina Coladas to sip on while we watched the fireworks. A few minutes after they started, Dean got up and said ‘I’ll take a photo of you to send to my mum.’ This really confused me because there was nothing exciting to see behind me, he had the fireworks behind him! So I started digging through my bag for my phone saying, ‘No, I’ll take a photo of YOU.’ Instead, he still ‘took a photo’ and handed me his phone. On the screen was a different photo. It was one he had staged at home of him holding a sign saying Marry me? with our Boston Terrier in the background next to another sign saying Marry him! It was the cutest thing I’d ever seen! I had a bit of an unconventional reaction actually; the first thing out of my mouth was ‘Are you serious?!’ rather than having tears streaming down my face. Dean said ‘Yes’ and opened a wooden box containing the ring. It was beautiful and it was designed by Dean!! I was so excited that I actually put the ring on my own finger; again, a little unconventional. I was smiling from ear to ear and kept saying ‘Really??’ When it sunk in, a minute later, I began to cry happy tears. Dean explained he wanted to catch the sunset that night as well, just to make it a perfect proposal. To me it was perfect regardless. We had the best 9 days to follow. Needless to say the Man Bag didn’t make another appearance.

What was unique or amazing about your wedding day?

Traditionally in Orthodox weddings the Best Man marries the couple in the church by doing the Crowning Ceremony. Dean didn’t want to single out any one of his groomsmen as being closer to him than the next, so he didn’t choose a Best Man – they were all our Best Men. Logistically we couldn’t have all of them participate in the ceremony so instead we decided to have Dean’s grandfather do it. It was very special to us as he is a big part of Dean’s life. Our photographer captured how proud he was during the ceremony and it was nice to see a big, bright smile on his face.

Another thing we decided to do was hire a London Bus to take us around to our photo locations. We invited our immediate family on the bus so they could be there with us every step of the way. I’m an only child so I really wanted my parents to be part of the entire day with me, from start to finish.

What makes you both swoon?

I couldn’t answer this question on Dean’s behalf so on our morning drive to work today I asked him. He said what makes him swoon is when I can read his mind. I know him better than he knows himself, which he loves.

I swoon every time Dean tells me he loves me during a random moment, like if I’m washing dishes or if we’re driving into work together. I love the spontaneity.

What’s special about your relationship?

We’re both Librans, sharing a birthday week and we are definitely true to Libran form – we balance each other out completely. One of our groomsmen put it perfectly in his wedding speech; we are like yin and yang.


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