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Sarah & Ian: A Military Wedding in Wellesley Island, NY

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Sarah & Ian in Wellesley Island, NY
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Sarah wore a low, simple hairstyle and tucked in two gardenias just above the veil.
Cutup, Watertown
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The couple hired a local florist to create the wedding-day arrangements. The bridesmaid bouquets were hand-tied bunches of yellow and white blooms.
Guignard’s Flowers, Lowville
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Sarah and Ian were married in Saint Cyril of Alexandria, a small village church in Alexandria Bay, just across the St. Lawrence River from Wellesley Island. “Saint Cyril’s has special meaning for us because there is a plaque inside commemorating my brother, who loved the river and passed away in 2000,” Sarah says.
Saint Cyril of Alexandria, Alexandria Bay
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“Ian wanted a military wedding, complete with uniforms, sabers, and military cadences,” Sarah says. The couple made their exit from the church beneath an arch of sabers.
Saint Cyril of Alexandria, Alexandria Bay
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Dinner and dancing went on in a tent on the front lawn of the Hart House. Small ivory paper lanterns and soft ivory fabric added a warm feel to the reception space.
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Sarah speaks French at home, so French accents graced the ceremony programs and menu cards, which were placed at each reception table.
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The centerpieces -- a mix of yellow, cream, and blue flowers -- sat low on the tables, which added to the sophisticated ambience and made for easy conversation.
Guignard’s Flowers, Lowville
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Sarah and Ian’s cake was a rich, dark-chocolate, three-tier round cake covered with white buttercream frosting. Each tier was adorned with fresh flowers in yellow, blue, cream, and white.
Mrs. R’s Desserts, Sackets Harbor
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Sarah and Ian were ferried across the bay to the island and back on an antique wooden boat called the Gadfly. The two rode with their honor attendants and spouses, while the rest of the crew piled into a bigger boat called Zipper.

Sarah & Ian in Wellesley Island, NY

They had danced the night away when they first met, but when Ian stopped by the restaurant where Sarah worked a few days later, sparks didn’t exactly fly. “I pretty much blew him off because I was busy and he was wearing a tank top,” Sarah says. “I hate tank tops on men!” It wasn’t until later that summer that the two bumped into each other and Ian asked her out. “It was the best date I had ever had,” Sarah says. The Bride Sarah Yaussi, 28, writer The Groom Ian Pienik, 31, defense contractor for the U.S. Army The Date September 2 One night, Sarah arrived home to find dozens of tiny tea lights, a roaring fire, and a bottle of wine. “All of a sudden, he was on one knee, digging the ring box out of the couch,” Sarah says. “He asked me to marry him and opened the box. Out of my mouth came, ‘Are you serious?’” Sarah says, “He laughed. I said yes.” With the help of Sarah’s mother, she planned a military wedding at a bed and breakfast -- with a color palette inspired by the blue-and-gold army uniforms and with French-inspired accents.
- Anja Winikka
Their Ingredients
  • Guignard’s Flowers, Lowville
  • Saint Cyril of Alexandria, Alexandria Bay
  • Mrs. R’s Desserts, Sackets Harbor

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