The idea of trying to plan a wedding in six short weeks sounds like a surefire way to end up unhappy. But for Josie Yousef and Richard Higgs, it turned out to be the best decision. Richard, who hails from Sydney, Australia, and Josie, who’s from Chicago, got engaged while on vacation in France in July 2011.
At the time, Richard’s father was in the U.S. visiting from Australia, and there was a cancellation at the reception venue they wanted—Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster—so they decided to get married sooner rather than later. “Some people thought I was nuts,” says Josie, 31. “But it was perfect.”
They pulled off their affair by staying organized, delegating and not second-guessing themselves. “Because we had to make decisions very quickly, there was almost no time to stress,” Josie says. She worked with wedding planner Jenny Orsini, and had lots of help from Richard, 44, who heads an industrial cleaning company.
The couple married on September 16, 2011, under a large tree on the manicured grounds of their home in Bedminster. Josie, an assistant vice president at Moody’s Investors Service, says they wanted to tie the knot outdoors at their house, where their relationship blossomed.
“It’s where we feel comfortable,” she says. Stunning in a rush-ordered strapless Jenny Lee gown and a long veil with scalloped lace edges, Josie walked down a carpet of white rose petals on the arm of her younger brother, Jamal.
Afterward, the 75 guests took a hayride to the nearby club, while the bridal couple and their families arrived by a horse-drawn wagon, a surprise from Richard.
At Trump, they enjoyed outdoor cocktails and a sit-down dinner inside.
Josie kept the décor simple, with lots of cream and gold and touches of green and purple. “I wanted it to be chic and glamorous,” she says.
After dancing to contemporary pop tunes, the group went back to the couple’s home, where they celebrated into the early morning hours. Josie was thrilled. “I woke up the next day and I said to Richard, ‘I had the perfect day.’” The couple are living in Bedminster and New York City.