In 2021, Bridal Bliss was everywhere. Couples wed on beaches, in castles, in sweet, simple destination weddings, and in huge venues in their hometown. One couple even said “I do” in their backyard! We had a great time sharing all their stories and staring in awe at their photos. To mark another year of celebrating Black love, we thought we’d put the spotlight back on nuptials that were truly different in one way or another, and it was obvious through the stunning imagery. Check out a few of the most extravagant and innovative weddings ESSENCE covered this year.
Courtney and Torrey
The couple said “I do” at the historic Biltmore hotel in Atlanta in front of close friends and family on July 4, 2021. Aside from the gorgeous decor, we also love the personal touches added — including the groom and his men in Jordans.
Rosco and Matthew
Lovers of nature, Rosco and Matthew got creative, having “foraged” some of the decor and accents used for their big day themselves. The end result was stunning.
Kady and Jason
The couple’s destination wedding in Mexico was supposed to be on the beach. However, when a hurricane threatened their nuptials, their celebration was moved inside the Casa Malca into the “Purple Room,” filled with plenty of chandeliers and opulence.
Brittany and Oliver
Views! Brittany and Oliver’s destination wedding on Sugar Beach in St. Lucia was something that deserved to be on the front of a postcard.
Amira and Kester
After getting married at home at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, the couple went all out for their big celebration, including having a Nigerian traditional ceremony and saying “I do” at The Legacy Castle in New Jersey.
Naomi and Jordan
The couple exchanged vows at the stunning Oheka Castle in Long Island, New York. They couldn’t have found a better backdrop for their big day (or a better vehicle, rolling in style in a Rolls Royce Cloud).
Sydaiya and Sheriff
The extravagance for this couple’s big day came in the form of the regal attire they wore for their Nigerian traditional wedding, which was also a destination wedding in — hold onto your hats — Tanzania.
Riqua and Andre
People getting married in Las Vegas isn’t new, but getting married in the desert? That’s an original thought. Riqua and Andre did just that back in May, exchanging vows at Dry Lake Bed and following up with a reception at the ritzy Waldorf Astoria.
Laurie and Damon
Nothing beats the creativity of actually building the perfect wedding venue in your own backyard. Chicago couple Laurie and Damon managed to do that, allowing them to safely host loved ones outdoors from the comfort of their own home.