More sweet details from their royal nuptials below!
- Couple: Crystal Williams-Foster & Joshua Foster
- Occupations: Entrepreneur & Content Creator | Real Estate Development & Consulting Company (JAF Creative Solutions)
- Photographer: Joshua Dwain
- Wedding Date: April 4, 2022
- Location: Palm Beach, Florida
- Venue: The Breakers (Palm Beach Island at the historic and iconic Breakers)
- Favorite menu items: Crystal LOVED the Key lime pie & Joshua raved about their wedding cake.
- Bridesmaid & Groomsmen gifts: The girls were gifted pajamas and jewelry and were proposed to with a glam box filled with Chanel perfume and other high-end items. Their hair and makeup were also paid for. The boys had their tuxes, shoes, and accessories paid for, in addition to a special meal the week before during their bachelor party.
- First dance song: “U Move, I Move” by John Legend & Jhene Aiko
- Extra details: Choreographed dance with Jeremiah (the bride’s son) by a TikTok dancer. Prudence & Chris (Bride & Groom attendant that helped throughout the day).
- Advice from the bride: “If you’re going as grand as we did with a wedding week, try to give people enough time to plan, and then put money into your budget where you can to help your bridesmaids. So just be mindful that people are helping you and they want to be there for you, but try to cover as much as you can for them.”
How they met…
Crystal:We actually met on a dating app called Hinge. I ended up joining Hinge ’cause I had started with one of my businesses and on Instagram and I had gotten blocked out and I was so focused. I was a single mom, I had a 10-year-old. And my friends kept telling me, “You should date, you should date.” And I was like, “I don’t have time. I’m building this business. I think my business was two months old,” but it was actually already lucrative. And Instagram had kind of blocked the page. So my friend had told me, she’s like, “Well now that you’re blocked and something’s going wrong with the business right now, until they let you back in, why don’t you download this app? ‘Cause your biggest complaint is you never have time. You ain’t got nothing but time…” because I couldn’t do anything. At the time, I was a one-woman show. I was working probably 50 hours a week, I was a mom, and I was also in school online. And then I had this business online that was actually making money. And so she said, well, since they’re not letting you log in, you have extra time. That time that you would’ve been working, you can date now. And I’m like, “Okay, I guess I’ll do it.”
That was a Sunday. That Monday morning before going into the office, I downloaded the app.
It was at six o’clock in the morning, probably 5:59 ’cause I got in at six. Didn’t look around, didn’t understand the app. But as soon as I got in, there was this guy, very handsome, and he made a comment on his profile that said something like, “I would like to travel to all of the countries in Africa while listening to John Legend.” I was like, “Ooh, okay.”So what do I do? I double tap like Instagram ’cause that’s all I know. Like that’s good. Okay, I see you, bro. And then I’m about to go build my profile. So I’m building out my profile. You opened the door and the next thing I knew this man is telling me that we matched. And I’m like, hold on, I don’t even know you and I haven’t even put a profile up yet. Let me build on my profile. So I go to his profile and I’m like, oh. I said, “Oh no, we couldn’t have [matched] because we’re nine years apart.” And so I don’t think that we would’ve met. He’s like, “No, once you double tap, that means you like the person.” And I said, “Oh, oh my gosh.” I was like, “Well, I’m putting my parameters in place on this app and I wouldn’t date someone that’s like, not more than three years younger and X amount of years older.”
And he just went on to tell me how, long story short, that whole parameter that I’m trying to put in place is a waste of my time because no matter what his age is, he’s probably going to be more of a man than anybody else I’m going to meet on this app.He started going into telling me how he bakes, he sings, I’m like, “Awesome. So this is how you get them, huh?” He’s like, “Yeah, this is what I do.” And I’m like, “Okay.” But I think what got me was his love for God. His intro, all of that was included. It wasn’t like, I’m just trying to get her and then I’m going to tell her about it. He came up front with this is who I am. And so the whole day that Monday, we text back and forth on that app and it was like, okay, huh… “He’s nine years younger,” like what am I going to do with that? So I said, “Let’s start asking the real questions, right? Let me see if he got his stuff together.” And sure enough, at this point, he had his master’s degree. He had gone to Columbia, he had gone to USC. He was working at an architecture firm, so I’m like, “Okay, I’m going to give him a shot.” And we got off that app. We went from texting on the app to off the app I think within a day or two. And then we met 14 days later on July 1st. On July 14th, on our first date, according to him, that’s when he knew I was ‘the one.’ He told me, “Yeah, you’re going to be my wife.” And I’m like, “This man is crazy.” But here we are and maybe he’s a prophetic man because he saw this.
Joshua:I was terrified that Jeremiah was going to spill the beans once I told him that I was going to propose to his mom. But thankfully he did not. So Crystal’s friends are her family and she is very big on her friends, which was great in general, but not great when I was like, “Now I have to figure out how to make sure they’re all there and no one tells and all this type of stuff.”
A change of plans…Originally, the plan was, ’cause we had recently moved to Long Beach and there’s a lighthouse over by Long Beach. And the plan was, I was going to propose there, probably just going to be me, her, and Jeremiah. But after I really started realizing how close her friends were, I decided I wanted to do it on her birthday weekend when we were going to go on a trip to Big Bear (a ski resort) with her friends. It was interesting ’cause I was like, “Now I have to figure out how to do everything I wanted to do up there.” So the reason why it was tough was that I wanted to reveal a very large painting that I had a friend of mine paint showing our impending proposal. It was myself and her and me proposing to her. And when I say it was large, I think it’s like six feet by six feet or something crazy like that. And the intention was that it was going to be easier for me to get to the place in Long Beach to do that.
A hitch in the vision…But then once I realized that we were going all the way up mountains in the snow, I tried my best to figure out how I could strap it to the roof without her knowing and all this type of stuff, and it was just not happening whatsoever. I went and got the biggest rental truck for it and was going to try to strap it up while she was sleeping. It made no sense what I thought was going to work out. It’s one of those things where nothing went to plan the way I wanted to propose to her. But it still worked out in a sense when we were there. I asked her to marry me that night and I think it was nice because all of her friends, who she considers her family, were there to witness it. I think there was a lot left to be desired on my end, I was definitely nervous. 100% nervous.
She swears she knew way before that I was going to propose that weekend.I don’t fully believe that she knew that much earlier, but she knows when I’m antsy and anxious and whatnot. And it was only because nothing was going to plan. I feel like if it was going to happen the way that I planned for it to happen, she wouldn’t have known at all. But it still worked out. I mean, she didn’t shed any tears whatsoever. So I was like, “I don’t know if this really was a real yes or she was just saying yes just so she didn’t embarrass me in front of her friends or something. But the good thing is we got back home and I had the painting there waiting right in front and then that’s when she started weeping and crying and I was like, “Okay. I guess it was a real yes.”
When they knew they found “the one”…
Crystal:I was a single mom and for me, I didn’t really date. There was no dating, there were no men coming to meet my child. It was church, work, and business and I was trying to still get my degree online. And so meeting Josh was a breath of fresh air. He was great. He was unlike any guy I had ever dated. But still, that wasn’t enough for me. What got me was he came in and he always, from day one, just wanted to serve and help me. He never wanted anything. On our first date, I almost canceled. I said, “Hey, I’m actually running behind on my homework and business stuff that I’m doing. Can we reschedule?” He said, “I really want to meet with you. Why don’t we cancel what I had planned? We’ll meet at a Barnes & Noble instead and you can work on your homework and I’ll work on your business stuff.”
That was our first date and then we went to church.And so those moments like that made me say, “Oh, this man really does just give.” I also told him I wanted to be celibate. I said that I wanted to abstain and try to keep God in the relationship and I didn’t know when that would even change, this possibly would be until marriage. And he never questioned or asked me when, what, no. We went months into our relationship and nothing. The last thing was my son has a rare disorder called PFAPA, periodic fever syndrome, where he gets a fever every 30 days that lasts six days. During those six days, I have to give him medicine every five hours. If you miss even by five to 10 minutes his fever can spike and he can have a seizure. And so I have to set my alarm for six days. I’m getting interrupted sleep.
About three days in, Joshua, who works a 10-hour shift, calls me.I said, “Oh, I’m doing good. I’m just really tired.” I’m on day three of this process. And he says, “Well, I know that I’ve worked all day.” He lived an hour away. He said, “I’m willing to drive to you, drive that hour so you can sleep and I’ll do the night shift with your son.” Joshua had never met my son. He had never been in my home. And it was just the thought that I could finally be with someone who would love my child as their own, but also come in here and say, “How can I serve?” It was never, what can you give me? It was always how can I serve you? Which made me in turn want to serve him. And so to me, that moment with my son was my deal. I said, “Okay, yeah, this is… He the one, this is it.”
Here comes the bride…
Joshua:I mean I’ve always been the person and I say to everyone, it’s 100%. I remember vividly from being probably three years old that whenever my mom would pray for me, she would pray and ask God to give me a spirit of discernment. And I really think every single ounce of success and everything I have is based on that. I’m very good at reading people, which makes me tend to make a lot of gut decisions (for better or worse) when it comes to risks in business and things like that. Thankfully they’ve gone well for the most part. But a lot of it is, I can tell pretty quickly if someone is who they say they are. Short of me not knowing when we first started talking, when I saw her picture that she did have a 10-year-old. Thankfully that was no issue for me. But she didn’t have that on the app just yet. Short of that, she was exactly who she said she was after we talked for days after we met. And that was exactly what and who I was looking for. So like she said when I told her pretty shortly after we had our first date that she was going to be my wife, I really meant that. And it’s just something that I felt and so yeah, it’s just not a certain moment or certain thing, it’s just being able to match what she said with who she actually was.
Joshua:Black, Black, Black was 100% what I wanted. And I think we were able to do that as best as possible in a really unique way. Especially I think, if nothing else, we already went through the story where I really wanted to have the wedding in Jamaica. But I think the great thing about having it at The Breakers is that from what I saw, and I’m a history buff person, I’ll deep dive into anything possible, so I really dug into the history of The Breakers. The person who originally owned it, who designed it, and the area.
And of course when you dive into American history, a lot of it goes into some of the oppressions and things that our people, Black people, have faced.One of the biggest things that I was excited about is to be able to be at a venue like The Breakers and have as many Black vendors as possible be able to experience this place where not too many Black weddings happen. And I say that in a sense, where Black weddings for quote-unquote, “Normal people.” ‘Cause as I was talking with the staff there (who were absolutely amazing!), a lot of them are from the islands and Jamaica, which was great as well. But as I was speaking with them, they said, “Yeah, usually the Black people that we see getting married here are athletes or entertainers or [people] with a lot of money.”
Incorporating diverse vendors…Thankfully, we were blessed enough to afford to be there, but it’s not common. And so just being able to be in that space that we could have as many Black vendors as possible. And beyond that, just my family and friends and Crystal’s family and friends, to be able to experience that… nobody on either side of our family has ever been at a place like that or seen a wedding like that. To be able to have my nieces that just turned eight years old and 21 years old, to be able to be there and see that [was] just amazing. These are the type of places and people and events that can be possible even with who we are as a people.
Black culture…So that was the biggest thing in terms of culture. Beyond that, my mom and her side of the family loved to hear Jamaican music and reggae and things like that. And of course, for Crystal and her LA friends with their Cali music and whatnot and Crip walking and all that good stuff. But I think overall just black culture, in general, is definitely what kind of drove home that it was a great space and a great time.
And that’s the biggest thing, so a lot of what I do is work with black vendors. And the biggest thing too is like, it’s still very high quality. It wasn’t just, “Oh, we’re just doing it just because you’re black. They were the best of the best. And then also the people that weren’t the ones that we ended up, quote-unquote, “Had to use,” they were absolutely amazing too. Definitely don’t want to take anything away from them, but it was just good to be able to have this many vendors possible that represented who we were.
Wedding style & attire…
Crystal:I knew that I wanted a style of royalty. I knew that the venue could not look like a hotel. So if it couldn’t look like a hotel, it had to be a building that looked as if it came from maybe old Europe, maybe a castle. I knew I wanted that because again, sticking with that royalty theme, something that had character. Something that wasn’t too modern, but still up to date. So it still felt as if I was immersed in luxury, but it wasn’t the common glass everywhere, which is what we live in. But I wanted something that had core bells and sconces and just character at every turn and arches and just old hardware that maybe is covered in brass now that looks new. And that’s what I wanted. And I believe that The Breakers went above and beyond with that. The hotel is just gorgeous.
The dress…From there I wanted a gown that matched that royalness and so I found the designer, Esè Azenabor, and even that again, I thought to myself: how do I get what’s in my brain to her? When I went in, I told her what I thought I wanted. She told me, okay, you definitely need custom. Don’t even look at what I have on the racks ’cause what you are trying to describe to me, you’re not going to find over there. And she took out a pencil and paper and she let me just try to brain dump everything that was inside of my head using words that I’m sure she probably was like, that is not what it’s called. Even still, she was just drawing as I was describing. Then when she finished, she turned it around and I was like, that’s it! That is the dress!
A vision of royalty…So I wanted something that was going to give me the royalness that I was looking for. Something big and puffy, but can come off because I wanted to be able to still show my figure, I was working hard. So I’m like, I got to be able to show this figure off! So whatever big and puffy design you give me for the princess and queen look, I need that to be able to come off.
Pearls…Then from there, I knew that I wanted pearls. I see a lot of crystals and all this other stuff. And I said, “No. To me, if we’re sticking with the royalty, kind of old royalty at that, pearls are a statement of that. And so I wanted them everywhere and I wanted them to look like they were floating on my body.”
When I said that to her, she said, “Oh, okay.” Like, don’t just put pearls on a dress for me. No, no, no. I need them to look like it’s an illusion that they’re just on my skin. And enough cleavage where it’s still a little sexy, but it’s not too risque. I said, ’cause my husband’s mom will look at me like I’m crazy. She said, “Okay, I can do that.”And for it to be, I knew I wanted the dress to be corset because I’m going to need a little extra pull-in, which she did. And I mean, the dress just was perfect.
Crystal:I would say my overall favorite piece, believe it or not, would have to be my veil. I wasn’t even going to get a veil, I thought that they were overpriced for this thing that was going on my head. When I put the dress on and I tried it on with her, I said, “No, it needs a veil.” And the veil was custom-made as well with the same pearls throughout and the same shine. And it was perfect to the point when it arrived, I was literally just walking around the house with the veil on. I think we know for sure if we don’t wear the dress again in 10 years, we’re definitely wearing the veil. The veil will be here!
Joshua:I went custom ’cause I was like, after all the customs she had, I felt like I had to get something that had even got closer, you matched it up with it. Custom suit by Miguel Wilson.
Favorite wedding day memories…
Crystal:When Joshua surprised us with vows for Jeremiah. Today when I watch it, I still cry. When we watched the tape, everyone still cries. Jeremiah still cries. It’s just one of those moments that I didn’t expect. And so it just solidified again ’cause I had so many moms ask me, as a single mom, like, “How did you know he was the one? How could you trust him with your kid?” There’s so much that goes into marrying someone when you already have a child that you have to deal with at home and with the child. And to find a man that was marrying me and marrying my child and publicly declaring that in front of everyone, you can’t put a price on that. It’s a moment that I will never forget. It’s a moment that still makes me emotional. And it was so beautiful to see him profess pretty much his love for him as a father and all the things that he desired for him as a father. Especially knowing that even though he has a dad, he only sees him in summer. So this is a man that is coming in and truly stepping into that father role for him. It was amazing.
Joshua:I feel like the wedding day was such a blur. Not in a bad way, but like there wasn’t a specific favorite memory until after I was able to really look back and watch the video, which Bridges Cinema did an amazing job with because I feel like I didn’t miss any moment after seeing all of that. So I think after going back and looking at the video, the one that Crystal shared was my favorite memory ’cause it was just great seeing everyone cry along with me. It made it not seem weird that it was just me all up there crying. But I think, I don’t know, except for that moment, of course, being able to say I do, and it was the time that everyone was able to just witness and be there for us. It’s just kind of looking back and just seeing all of the joy that was going on that day for Crystal, for Jeremiah, and then just for everyone that was there as well. It made all the back and forth that Crystal had worth it. It made all of the money spent well worth it. And just seeing that it turned out in a way that even I’m sure Crystal didn’t even imagine that it could turn out. So I think it was just overall being able to sit back and watch all of those moments together – that was really it for me.
Advice for other engaged couples planning their wedding…
I think, well, one, easy for the groom-to-be is just to be quiet and listen to what your bride-to-be says. But I think the biggest thing is to get yourself an Oniki. That helps out a whole lot.I think the biggest thing for me, the reason why that’s important is that I’m very organized, a process-driven person. And things would be absolutely crazy if it wasn’t organized. And I was fully under the impression that I was totally capable of doing that myself to start with. I still believe that I would’ve been capable of staying organized, but it would’ve driven me absolutely crazy, and then the actual wedding itself, of course, I mean we were never naive enough to think that we could plan the wedding itself, but I think for me it was like, “Oh, we don’t really need a wedding planner until we figure out exactly where we wanted to get married and who we want the vendors to be. And then it could just be planned from there. So I think that the whole process beforehand, yes, could have been done, but it wouldn’t have been done as well as it was and as smoothly. So it’s definitely important to stay organized and if it is in your budget, which I think it should be, definitely hire a planner.
Crystal:For me, I would say, I wish going back when we ate dinner, we would’ve eaten it outside of the room. Just so we could have that one little moment secluded to ourselves. So that would be my advice. If you could find a moment throughout the timeline to say, “Okay, for 15 minutes we are going to be here. Just for us to say, “how’s it going for you?” alone, I think I would recommend that. Also, when you’re picking your venue, try to pick a venue that possibly specializes in weddings. It was amazing to know that The Breakers had people to help us through the entire wedding routine and processes the day of.
- Bride’s dress: Esè Azenabor
- Bridal salon: Esè Azenabor
- Bride’s headpiece and/or veil: Esè Azenabor
- Bride’s shoes: Manolo Blahnik
- Bridesmaids dresses: White Runway
- Groom’s attire: Miguel Wilson
- Groomsmen attire: Miguel Wilson
- Cakes/desserts: The Breakers
- Catering: The Breakers
- Ceremony venue: The Breakers
- Event design: Oniki Occasions
- Entertainment: Elan Artists
- Event planner: Oniki Occasions
- Florals: Special Event Resource & Design Group
- Bride + bridesmaids hair: Hair Chemistry
- Lighting: The Breakers
- Linens: BBJ Latavola
- Makeup: Chem x Beauty
- Male grooming & hair: The Cultivation Lair
- Photography: Joshua Dwain Photography
- Reception venue: The Circle at The Breakers
- Rental furniture & decor: Special Event Resource & Design Group
- Rentals – ceremony arch: LPR Design Group
- Stationery & graphics: By Dami Studios
- Videography: Bridges Cinema
- Bride: Crystal Williams Foster
- Groom: Joshua Foster