Until just last month, American Idol‘s Justin Guarini had planned to walk down the aisle next summer. But, in the end, the singer – who was the runner-up to Kelly Clarkson on Idol‘s inaugural season – decided he couldn’t wait any longer to marry Reina Capodici, whom he first met in junior high school, where Capodici’s mother was his English teacher.
“We just wanted to be married so badly,” says Guarini, who reconnected with his new bride in December 2007. “I thought to myself, ‘It’s time.’ Seeing how much we both had grown, how well we operated together, and how in love we are, it just made absolute sense.”
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Saturday afternoon’s wedding – which took place in the garden of a private estate in Guarini’s hometown of Doylestown, Penn. – may have been pulled together quickly, but the couple still found time to make each detail of the 25-minute ceremony personal.
“That was really the key,” Guarini says. “And it turned out absolutely perfect. There was not one hitch.”
The couple recited vows they wrote themselves and waited to exchange rings – which were kept in a wooden, moss-covered box – until after the box had been passed around to each of the 50 invited guests, who were free to say prayers and pass along good wishes to the couple. Guarini, 30, and his new bride, 27, also made sure to give Capodici’s 4-year-old daughter, Lola, a starring role.
“I had vows to her and I gave her a necklace [with] Reina’s engagement ring on it so that she can have that for the rest of her life,” Guarini says. “She has welcomed me into her family, and she’s just the sweetest little girl. She’s an amazing person and I feel incredibly lucky to be a part of her life.”
Both the bride and groom teared up throughout the ceremony.
Emotions Ran High
“Both of us were very emotional too many times to count,” Guarini says with a laugh. “But one of the moments that sticks out most is after we left as man and wife, we had some alone time, and we just wept in each other’s arms. It was beautiful.”
At the reception, held nearby at Guarini’s parents’ estate, guests dined on salmon and asparagus and danced to music deejayed by Cutting Edge Entertainment, the same company Guarini had spun for before auditioning for Idol. The couple’s first dance was to their song, Jeff Buckley’s version of “Hallelujah,”, and Guarini also shared a first dance with Lola to Regina Spektor’s “Samson.” For once, Guarini was happy to leave the music to others.
“I actually didn’t sing at all,” he says. “I had the day off!”
A honeymoon will have to wait until December, as the newlyweds are moving into a new house in Doylestown with Lola and puppy Blue, a husky-German shepherd mix, later this week.
“The house, the new puppy, the wedding – we’re just getting it all done [at once]!” says Guarini, who will also return to the studio this winter to record his third album. “It’s awesome. I’m so excited.”