For Tessa Torrente and Matt Slider, travel has played a powerful role in their story. The first time Slider said “I love you,” the couple were making a pit stop in Washington, D.C., on a road trip. Torrente realized that their relationship was the real deal when they spent six weeks backpacking through Western Europe. Then when it was time for Torrente and Slider to plan their wedding, they knew they wanted pictures that were really representative of their personalities. So Slider, at a lunch date over sushi, suggested that they stage a photo shoot at different locales on a vacation around the world.
Torrente bought an off-the-rack wedding dress and Slider purchased a cheap suit, and the pair changed into their nuptial-ready outfits at some of the most picturesque places around the world — months before they actually exchanged vows. They kissed and kept each other warm in Norway, hugged on top of the Matterhorn in Zermatt, Switzerland, strolled in front of the Parthenon in Athens, Greece, braved high winds in Ireland, and more.
Although the finished collection of pictures is truly stunning and uniquely the couple, capturing the photos wasn’t easy — or glamorous. In Rothenburg, Germany, a cat kept attacking Torrente’s dress and even threw up on the tulle. In Seville, Spain, they woke up at dawn to capture images at the Plaza de Espana and the camera died. “Because of that, one of my favorite shots was actually taken on an iPhone 6,” Torrente says. And while seeing the northern lights, they had to run inside a cabin for warmth in between shots. “It was 2 a.m. and negative 26 degrees Celsius outside. Matt definitely wanted to give up, but I was really stubborn,” she says. “It ended up being one of my favorite pictures.”
Torrente and Slider tied the knot just last week, nearly a year after their epic trip. Unfortunately, the gown didn’t survive the journey. “I wore a different one,” she says. “By the end of our trip, that dress had rain, sand, dirt and cat vomit all over it.” But her now-husband is quick to point out that the “dress on the wedding day was completely different — and way more beautiful.”
What’s next for the couple — who maintain a blog, Travel Where to Next, and Instagram, travel_wheretonext — is just as you’d expect. For the honeymoon, they’re starting in South Florida and heading to Alaska, Thailand, India and Russia, and ending in their new home, New York City. “I want to bring the dress,” Torrente says. “But I would probably have to convince Matt.”