Written by Laura Bell. Photography by Two & Quarter.
Proving that true love knows no boundaries, Natalie vanden-Heuvel, a dance and yoga teacher from Toronto, and Jonathan Flood, a marine mechanic from Bermuda met on an airplane and fell in love during a trip to Mexico in October 2014. Natalie was heading to Puerto Vallarta to teach a yoga workshop while Jonathan was on a fishing trip with his three best friends. “Jonathan swears I was trying to get his attention; however, when Delta airlines had to call the four boys by name to make sure they had arrived after a 12- hour layover, they kind of stood out,” said Natalie. “We ended up sitting adjacent to one another—and the rest is history!”
“I think we both knew fairly quickly that we had finally met our match,” she continued. “We are both severely witty, stubborn and require a lot of freedom. There aren’t many people who truly allow me to be myself, but he gets me. It’s very easy to be together.”
With work permit issues threatening separation, the couple decided to fast-forward their relationship in order to be together. “The proposal was VERY casual,” said Jonathan. “We were facing impending separation due to work permit issues and had to make a big decision. Either Natalie had to go home to Toronto or we put our relationship in fast-forward and got
married. We were sitting on our couch at home and I turned to Natalie and said: ‘So, you want to get married?’ After the shock wore off, she said yes.”
Wasting no time, the couple immediately started planning a casual yet perfectly suited way to say their vows. Not wanting to make a big fuss, they chose to wed at the Registry General—which was apparently also a family tradition as the groom’s mother and aunt were also married there.
A girls’ night-in complete with pizza, gin and aperol was followed with a morning of manicures and self-done hair and makeup as the girls got ready at matron of honour Eleanor Patton’s house. With only a few short weeks to plan everything, the bride had ordered her dress online
at ASOS.com and shipped it in from the UK. Natalie’s jewellery was handmade by Eleanor who owns Bermuda Rocks Jewellery.
Keeping things simple—and smartly delegating the details to talented friends—Natalie put one of her best friends, Jennifer Spafford, in charge of flowers. “She knew what our wedding attire looked like and she created a colour palette in her mind and brought it to life with a little help from the florist, Flowers by GiMi,” the bride said.
The intimate ceremony included Jonathan’s parents, his aunt and uncle, sister and two cousins along with the three best friends he had gone to Mexico with, as well as Natalie’s brother and four best friends as guests.
After the ceremony the couple taxied their entire wedding party to Admiralty Park for some unique and creative photos. “We live in Spanish Point and spent a lot of time at Admiralty Park, especially on my first trip to the island in November of 2014,” said Natalie. “It was a very easy decision as the photos were the most important part of the day to me.”
The couple chose the photography duo of Ally and Mark Tatem from Two & Quarter Photography to capture their day. “Mark Tatem is Jonathan’s first cousin,” Natalie said. “They grew up together. Ally and I were also already friends so it seemed very obvious who we would ask and be comfortable working with. Not to mention how incredibly talented we
knew they are.”
“We brought all of our guests to Admiralty Park by taxi and had Prosecco waiting for everyone on location,” added Jonathan. “We went off to take our photos alone and then brought all of our guests down to the ocean to take pictures. After that we took all of our guests to Beluga Bar and had dinner and cake.”
And the cake was the stand-out detail for Jonathan. Created by Christina De Oliveira, it was an “After Eight” mint chocolate cake with a miniature moon gate and roses adorning the top. “It was absolutely delicious and he still brags about it to this day!” said the bride.
“Everything went so smoothly,” she reminisced. “From taxi transportation organised by Uncle Gordie Flood who owns a cab; the flowers being picked up by Jenn; Jonathan’s mom organising the table arrangements at Beluga Bar, and Matteo and Sammy being so stellar with the menu choice and selection; as well as Mark and Ally being easy going, adventurous and creative. We allowed all of our friends and family to do what they did best and just let it happen. The whole process was so relaxed!”
Instead of a honeymoon, the couple chose to stay at the Hamilton Princess on their wedding night because they wanted to be home for Christmas and New Year’s Eve. “People often forget how nice Bermuda is in December,” said the bride. “We had no need to leave.”
Seeing her husband’s face light up when she walked into the registry office was one of two stand-out moments for Natalie. “We also had a very surreal moment walking into Hamilton Princess realising we had booked our room under Mr. & Mrs. Flood,” she said.
Keeping it simple, allowing for friends and family to get involved and focusing on only the most important details made for an unforgettable wedding day for this truly unique couple.