As the creative director of Sophie et Voilà, a contemporary bridal company based in Spain, Sofía Arribas is no stranger to the ins and outs of a perfect wedding day. So, when her longtime partner Jose Izquierdo popped the question in December 2020, Sofía was able to apply her industry know-how for her dream day.
“He proposed to me in the middle of the third wave of COVID-19, on my birthday, in the kitchen of our house,” she explains. “It was in the evening after dinner, and I had one of my children on each leg. For me, it was the most beautiful proposal in the world.”
Sofía and Jose met over four years prior at the opening of an art gallery in Bilbao. However, it wasn’t until a few weeks later when they were both in Valencia that the couple started talking. “He lived in Zaragoza, and I lived in Bilbao,” she adds. “It was complicated, but, as can be seen, it has turned out wonderfully well!”
The couple has followed their own laws of attraction—proving that love can conquer all, including distance—so it’s only fitting that their nuptials followed suit. Sofía and Jose planned their own July 2021 nuptials, a two-day affair tucked in Spain’s Basque Country. “We were super relaxed. We knew what we wanted, so it was quite easy,” the bride shares. “I know a lot of people in the wedding industry, so it was like planning a party with friends.”
With food-centric festivities, personalized vows, and, of course, incredible fashion, these nuptials were everything Sofía and Jose dreamt of. Read on for an intimate look at the couple’s celebration, as photographed by Inma Fiuza.
To kick off the two-day celebration, Sofía got her glam on with a “natural, healthy face” from Miss Pupet and hair, courtesy of Ainara Collantes. “My hair is short, and I didn't want to become another person for that day. So, I kept my hair the same as it is everyday,” the bride shares.
For Friday’s festivities, the bride designed an A-line cut silk piqué mini dress, complete with pockets and a flared cape back. “I based the design of my dress to accompany the overall theme of the wedding," she says. "It all came together at the very last minute, but in the end, it was exactly what I had envisioned.” Sofía even designed a similar, bite-sized frock for her flower girl.
“My headband was a present from one of our partner stores and it’s made with my dress’s fabric,” she adds. “The sandals—made in python and Swarovski—were from Casadei. I didn't have a bouquet, but I had a clutch, which [was borrowed from my sister].”
We wanted something informal—people dancing, eating, and having good wine all day long.
Sofía and Jose made things official by signing their marriage license at Bilbao City Hall. “We wanted something informal—people dancing, eating, and having good wine all day long,” the bride shares.
After a trip to the courthouse, the couple met their closest family and friends for a soirée at Ercilla De Bilbao Hotel's rooftop, which is conveniently located next to Sofía and Jose’s home.
On Saturday, the bride stunned in another one of her show-stopping designs: An ivory linen mini dress with an asymmetrical neckline topped and a large taffeta knot. “[It’s] ideal for dancing due to its movement and spectacular due to the composition of its volumes,” she shares.
Sofia completed the look with her best friend’s garter, jewelry from Joyas Antiguas Sardinero, and Aquazzura’s black striped sandals. With a bouquet of peonies in tow, the bride was ready to get married.
On Saturday, Jose and Sofía continued to celebrate their love story with their guests at Ubieta Palace. “[It belongs to] a friend of mine, and we really think it is the most impressive place in Basque Country,” the bride shares.
“We really like eating and drinking with our friends, so everything was planned around the food,” Sofia explains. “It was a huge, funny lunch!” At the reception, the tables were adorned with centerpieces made of fruits and vegetables, all of which were later donated to the local food bank.
Not only did the couple exchange personalized vows during the celebratory weekend, but they also had their inner circle read touching speeches. According to Sofía, the most emotional speech came from her 9-year-old daughter, who teared up after reciting hers.
The couple snuck away to capture some candid shots with photographer Inma Fiuza.
Hungry? Guests enjoyed a savory meal from Asados El Yugo. “We served an Argentinian asado, because my husband's family has a business in that country and we are very close to it,” Sofía shares. “We also served oysters, crayfish, and lots of cheese!” The feast was paired with rosé from Julietas and cakes by Cinnamon Bilbao, both of which are friends of the couple.
Due to their busy work schedules, Jose and Sofía had “the best honeymoon” by spending some quality time at home; a move that felt true to the couple. When asked about her number-one piece of wisdom for couples who are currently planning their own weddings, Sofía’s reply was simple. “Just do what you want,” she says, just as she and Jose have always done.
Ceremony Venue Ercilla Hotel
Reception Venue Ubieta Palace
Bridal Gown Designer Sophie et Voilà
Jewelry Joyas Antiguas Sardinero
Hair Ainara Collantes
Makeup Miss Pupet
Second Bridal Gown Sophie et Voilà
Groom’s Attire Anglomania
Flower Girl Attire Sophie et Voilà
Engagement Ring Joyas Antiguas Sardinero
Floral Design Flowers & Co
Catering Asados El Yugo
Cake Cinnamon Bilbao
Photography Inma Fiuza
Videography White Penguin