Marcia Vasell and her new husband Jaharaton “JJ” Johnson met at a soccer game and scored true love. Together they watched their relationship evolve from admiration to friendship, and ultimately marriage. After 14 years together, JJ proposed to the mother of his daughter on bended knee before their entire church congregation. They were married on September 30, 2011 in Canada. Share their love!
Back during the hunt for her wedding dress, Marcia tried on four different gowns in David’s Bridal and wasn’t the least bit satisfied with her options. As she headed out the door, this Grecian style chiffon halter gown caught her eye. When she slipped it on, she “just knew” she’d found The Dress.
All the men in the bridal party wore Calvin Klein suits that were carefully selected by the bride from a store called Moore’s. “The men were happy that I took the guess work out of their suit experience,” says Marcia. “It was one less thing for them to worry about.”
“I love calla lillies,” Marcia admits. “I wanted my bridesmaids to hold one big calla and I wanted my bouquet to feature callas but in a different way.” We’d say that was a success. Could this bridal bouquet be any lovelier? It’s perfection. (Credit for all florals goes to Creations Special Events and Custom Decor.)
“Things were a bit rocky for us when I was pregnant,” says Marcia. “But when our daughter was born, I knew our relationship had changed for the better. I will never forget that feeling we both shared.” Their daughter was right by their sides at the wedding when they made it official before God and their closest friends and family.
“I was a bit picky when it came to the groom and groomsmen,” Marcia admits. “I always hated to see pictures of groomsmen with droopy or twisted flowers in their boutonnieres, so I decided they had to have an alternative…actually I insisted. I decided on the peacock feather.” Great touch Marcia.
After collectively trying on five different gowns, Marcia’s bridesmaids decided on this strapless chiffon cocktail gown. The bride’s sister, who also served as the maid of honor, wore the longer version in yellow. Side note: Check out the fierce and gorgeous variety of updos among the girls. #hairdivas
“He is the only person who knows my deepest fears, my hurts and my ups and downs,” admits Marcia, when asked when she knew JJ was the guy for her. “I knew it had to mean something when I could confide in him about any and everything.”
Marcia never knew her biological father and her grandfather, who practically raised her, passed away years before she tied the knot. During the planning stages, she was saddened by the thought of not having either of them to walk her down the aisle until one of her bridesmaid’s dad, whom she considers like a second father to her, promised he’d do the honors on her big day; and he did. What a heartwarming sentiment.
Marcia and JJ were married by their church pastors beneath a gorgeous tent on these picturesque grounds. “It was great to have someone that knew us so well perform the ceremony, and it really lent itself to the sincerity of the ceremony.”
The couple chose to sprinkle pretty rose purple and yellow rose petals along the aisle to add a pop of color to their all-white ceremony decor motif. “We didn’t use a lot of decor because we wanted to keep the ceremony pure,” says Marcia. “All we needed were each other and God to complete this union.”
JJ and Marcia make their way to part two of their wedding day party plans. They say it’s good luck if it rains on your wedding day, so this optimistic duo wasn’t about to let a little drizzle spoil their fun.
“The reception was formal, but fun,” says Marcia. “I wanted my guests to feel like they were amongst friends, stress free and ready to have a great time.”
Sit Back and Relax
“I really wanted my wedding to be an experience for everyone,” says Marcia. “I hired a planner because I didn’t want my family and friends to worry about the details of putting together a wedding. I knew it could be stressful for me and for them.”
Marcia, who is a big fan of color and classic styles, made sure to spread both around throughout her wedding reception decor details. She used purple linens, tall centerpieces, and vibrant menus to pull of this breathtaking and elegant dinner atmosphere.
“When it came to the decor, I relied heavily on my planner Camille from June Plumm Events,” Marcia admits. “I knew the look and feel I wanted for my wedding: purple table covers, nice lighting, and an overall look that was polished and chic but not overly stuffy or over done. I’m a simple girl.”
“Both JJ and I are Jamaican, so it’s tradition that we have Jamaican black cake (rum cake) at our wedding,” says Marcia. “We gave our guests rum cake cupcakes as favors and we had another red velvet cake.” Family friends of the bride were responsible for this lovely four tiered sweet masterpiece. It’s one of the most unique cakes we’ve ever seen.
Their reception party ended in the wee hours of the morning. “I wanted to have a long reception because my friends like to mingle and dance and enjoy each others’ company,” says Marcia. “I didn’t want anyone to feel rushed into eating, only have time for a little bit of dancing and then be rushed out.”
We wish Marcia and JJ ceaseless joy and endless blessings in their new life together. Don’t forget to leave some comment love for the newlyweds below. Want to see your wedding featured on Bridal Bliss? Email us now!