Robin Roberts‘ wedding to Amber Laign was straight out of a fairy tale. The partners of nearly two decades tied the knot on Sept. 8, and ET’s Rachel Smith got the behind-the-scenes details on their big day.
JoAnn Gregoli, the couple’s event planner, worked with event designer Jen Gould to help Roberts and Laign craft their “ethereal, enchanted garden,” which had a specific focus on “sustainability and giving back.”
That all started with the couple’s save the date cards and invitations, all of which were able to be planted.
“The paper was actual seed paper,” Gregoli told ET, “so you can actually take it and you can grow flowers in honor of Amber and Robin.”
Then came the venue: Roberts and Laign’s backyard in Farmington, Connecticut. The location was “very meaningful” to the women, Gregoli said. To transform the space, Gregoli sourced trees for the women to stand under as they exchanged “I dos,” and decorated the area with Spanish moss, a nod to Roberts’ Southern roots.
“They were in shock,” Gregoli said of the first time the couple saw the venue. “I think Amber cried and she said, ‘You took my vision and you just took it to the next level. You just made my dreams come true.'”
As for what they were wearing for their big day, the brides turned to Mark Badgley and James Mischka of Badgley Mischka to design their gowns.
“We love summer weddings, we love garden weddings, and we adore dressing Robin. I mean, she’s so statuesque and gorgeous. We knew exactly the kind of dress she would want,” Badgley told ET, before explaining the idea behind the Good Morning America anchor’s gown.
“Robin stands for something very stoic, very simple. I think the simpler the better. It just comes off so powerful on her,” he said. “She’s got those beautiful shoulders and she’s, like, Hollywood glamour, so that that was kind of a no-brainer.”
Roberts’ dress was complete with a collar that featured around 1,000 Swarovski crystals, which took weeks to build.
When it comes to Laign, Badgley explained that she wanted a “romantic soft vintage” look. At the last minute, Badgley added a train that appeared as a “cloud of tulle” to her gown.
“She likes the romanticism of that, the whole experience,” Badgley said. “It was just the touch that the gown needed. It was detachable, so it was just this very luscious, sumptuous drape satin gown. [It was] very Great Gatsby. There was a really high slit.”
Gregoli revealed that Laign’s dress also had a special detail, telling ET, “‘Always’ was actually embroidered into her dress as a surprise to Robin.” She added of the women, “They were thinking about each other the entire time, but not telling each other the little things that they were doing for each other.”
What each of the brides wore was a surprise to the other, as Badgley and Mischka were tasked with doing multiple fittings in secret leading up to the big day.
“The way they approached the fittings was really cute,” Badgley said. “They didn’t want to see each other in the dress. So we’d go to Good Morning America for Robin’s fittings, and then we’d go to one of their apartments for the other one’s fitting, and then back to Robin’s apartment for a fitting, and then over to Amber’s place for her fitting.”
That special moment when Roberts and Laign saw each other for the first time was witnessed by only a few select guests, Gregoli explained.
“The ceremony was very intimate. It was only family, it was not everybody,” she said, before adding of Roberts, “The family was key to her and she had elements where her sister sang, which was beautiful. Her other sister did a reading, [which was], again, amazing. Her brother walked her down the aisle.”
Roberts’ late parents were also present in special ways; she had a locket on her bouquet in honor of her dad and put focus on her mom’s prayer bench during the big day.
After the ceremony was the party, which was attended by 250 guests. The setup, which took eight months to plan, included thousands of flowers, hundreds of candles, a 360-degree photo booth and a Prosecco truck. The phrase “love wins” was also displayed throughout.
The guests dined on large round tables that were made to look like trees were growing out of them.
“Amber wanted twinkle lights in the trees, so it actually felt like it was part of the ceiling but coming down,” Gregoli said. “It was probably one of the most romantic and enchanting environments. It was gorgeous.”
The dance floor was the focal point of the room, as it had “an enchanting trellis of flowers that were suspended overhead to give them that enchanted feeling that they were dancing amongst the garden.”
As guests departed, the couple’s focus on sustainability was once again highlighted, as Gregoli’s team reworked the flowers from the cocktail ceremony into bouquets for attendees to take home. Guests also received crystals as a party favor and were given treats from a gelato cart too.
“The entire wedding was filled with this thoughtfulness to each other,” Gregoli gushed. “They were so cute with each other.”