Denise and Jason were married at Gary’s Loft in New York, N.Y. on August 9. “This was the first and only venue we visited,” Denise said. “As soon as we stepped off of the elevator, we knew. It’s just this beautiful all-white loft. It was a blank canvas to really play with and make the space our own. And then, to look up and see the Empire State Building through the skylights was just more than we could dream.” The bride wore a custom-made lace sheath wedding gown, accessorized with her hair half-up/half-down in loose curls and a pair of Christian Louboutin peep-toe platform pumps, while the groom wore a black suit, accessorized with a tie. Bridesmaids wore short black dresses in various necklines and carried bouquets of baby’s breath.
The couple opted for a first look beforehand to calm any nervous jitters. Once the exchanging of vows were sealed with a kiss, it was official, almost 72 witnessing. Cocktail hour began followed by the reception shortly thereafter. Tables were decorated with white linens and napkins, milk glass vase and vessel centerpieces, and mercury glass votive candles, surrounded by folding padded chairs. “We really loved the seating chart,” she said. “Our layout was an L shape, and we were able to have two long sections with all the tables connected. We loved getting to mix all of our family and friends together. It became one large family. Fun fact: Jason surprised Denise by performing two songs! The first song was “When You Say Nothing At All” and the second song was handwritten personally. “We absolutely loved having music throughout the entire night,” Denise said. “It really helped transition the spaces and also kept the mood lively and fun. We had a string trio for the ceremony on the roof, and they played a mix of classic and current music before the ceremony and during cocktail hour. Then, we had an amazing French jazz band (Jason proposed to me in Paris and many of our first dates were to jazz clubs in the city, so it was a little nod to our journey together). Finally, everyone headed back up to the roof after dinner, where we had a DJ and danced the night away!”
Multiple two-tiered buttercream-frosted cakes were cut for dessert. “The milk glass vases, dishes, and cake stands were another favorite detail,” she said. “I had collected a few pieces here and there and really loved their look. So, we decided to incorporate them into the decor for the wedding. Well, thanks to our family, friends, and two summers of visiting many, many flea markets, we had more than enough pieces for every flower arrangement and dessert. After the wedding, we used them to decorate the tops of our kitchen cupboards. Everyday, we have a special reminder of our wedding.” The newlyweds’ best advice? “We highly recommend a day-of coordinator,” Denise said. “It was so nice to not have any family or friends running around or stressing, but instead, getting to really enjoy the entire wedding and activities. It was a relief to have someone there who knew our vision and made sure everything went as smooth as possible. Something is bound to happen that wasn’t planned for, or something will get missed. It put us at ease knowing we had someone there to take care of it.” At the end of the night, they jetted off to their honeymoon in Thailand.
Brittany and Nate were married in a ceremony at The Brick Church followed by a reception at Lyla’s Dance Hall in Mooresville, Ala. “I absolutely fell in love with this old rustic church from the moment I saw it,” Brittany said. “To me, it represented a part of who I am as a person. First of all, the shutters are black. Anyone who knows me, knows that my wardrobe consists of black, and nothing else. Secondly, the church was simple and seemed to look a little beat down. The last nine months were tough for my dad. He was a simple man and that was all there was to it. He accepted life as it came at him, taking everything day by day. Near the end of his life, he looked beat down on the outside, but on the inside, he was still beautiful. When I walked into the church, it took my breath away. It was beautiful, but yet, still simple. Dad always loved old churches , and loved the simple ways of the people in old churches. He led me to this church.” The bride wore a sweetheart lace fit ‘n’ flare wedding gown, accessorized with her hair in a sideswept ponytail, fingertip-length veil, jeweled sash, and a pair peep-toe platform pumps, while the groom wore a dark gray suit, accessorized with a bow tie. Bridesmaids wore short coral one-shoulder chiffon dresses and carried bouquets of roses, hydrangeas, astilbe, and dusty miller.
The couple opted for a first look beforehand to calm any nervous jitters. “My hands couldn’t stop shaking, and thank goodness my girlfriends were there to give me some champagne before I saw him for the first time,” she said. “I kept thinking what if he doesn’t like my hair, or what if he thinks this dress makes me look fat? I tapped him on the shoulder, and when he turned around tears rolled down his eyes. He said, ‘I have never seen you look so beautiful.’ And that was the moment I had been waiting for since I was a little girl.” Her brother walked her down the aisle to The Piano Guys version of Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years.” Once the exchanging of vows were sealed with a kiss, it was official, almost 275 witnessing.
Guests were greeted at the pavilion with a chalkboard sign that said, “Welcome to the best day ever. We love because He first loved us. 1 John 4:19.” And encouraged to take a mason jar to use for drinks. “I have danced my entire life, and I knew I had to have a good band for everyone to dance to,” Brittany said. “We danced and laughed the entire night, and my vision was complete.” A three-tiered buttercream-frosted cake was cut and served for dessert concluding dinner. In addition, there was a fully-stocked candy buffet, which also served double-duty as favors. The newlyweds’ best advice? “Everyone is going to have an opinion about what your wedding day should be like,” she said. “Don’t follow their advice. This is your special day, and it should be everything and more that YOU want. Some people told me to go with a more formal wedding, but that’s not who I am. I believe in sweet tea, dancing the night away, and happiness. They are some of the main ingredients to a good life. I am satisfied I followed my vision, and didn’t let others influence what I wanted for our big day.” At the end of the night, they jetted off to their honeymoon in the Dominican Republic.
Katie and Christopher were married in a ceremony at Dimnent Memorial Chapel followed by a reception at Baker Events by Gilmore in Holland, Mich. on August 1. “Dimnent Memorial Chapel is breathtakingly beautiful,” Katie said. “We loved the detailed architecture of the building, and the elegant stained glass windows that surround the chapel from every side.” The bride wore a strapless lace a-line wedding gown, accessorized with her hair in an updo, floor-length veil, and a pair of wedges, while the groom wore a three-piece dark gray suit, accessorized with a tie. Bridesmaids wore short orange silk taffeta dresses and carried bouquets of roses, gerber daises, succulents, and silver brunia balls. The couple opted for a first look beforehand to calm any nervous jitters. “We wrote our own vows to each other, and it was the most heartfelt, intimate, and tender moment that we shared with each other,” she said. “A lot of tears were shed during the exchanging of vows, and it was the best part of our wedding day.” Once it was sealed with a kiss, it was official, almost 135 witnessing. Cocktail hour began followed by the reception inside the renovated warehouse. Tables were decorated with white linens and napkins, mason jar centerpieces, and mercury glass votive candles, surrounded by chiavari chairs. “We incorporated a lot of small details into the day that meant a lot to us,” Katie said. “I carried my grandmother’s handkerchief in her memory, and the picnic basket that collected cards at the reception had belonged to Christopher’s grandparents. The party favors of chocolate-covered cherries was a nod to the groom’s hometown of Traverse City.” For extra entertainment, the newlywed shoe game was played. A three-tiered fondant-frosted cake was cut and served for dessert concluding dinner. “The food at our reception was AMAZING!” she said. “We followed our taste buds and went with some non-traditional food selections. We do not regret it.” The newlyweds’ best advice? “Do what feels like you and your fiance,” Katie said. “Get inspired by wedding magazines, blogs, and the internet but do not get hung up on trying to replicate someone else’s wedding day. You’ll rob yourself of so much joy on your special day if you spend too much time and energy comparing your wedding to what you’ve been elsewhere.” At the end of the night, they jetted off to their honeymoon in Hawaii.
Tina and Andrew were married in a ceremony at St. Joseph’s Catholic Church followed by a reception at St. Petersburg Shuffleboard Club in St. Petersburg, Fla. on October 5. The bride wore a strapless satin a-line wedding gown, accessorized with her hair in an updo, floor-length veil, pearl necklace, and a pair of comfy flats, while the groom wore a dark gray suit, accessorized with a tie. Bridesmaids wore short striped coral dresses and carried bouquets of roses, ranunculuses, craspedia, poppies, silver brunia balls, and pincushion proteas. “I remember first meeting with Tina and her mom about her big day, and the one thing that Tina stressed was FUN,” Rana Mohammadian of Roohi Photography said. “She didn’t really want to fuss about the details (But I would have never guessed. Aren’t the details adorable?) or worry about a certain design. She just wanted it to be a fun, fabulous day for everyone. And that it was!” Once the exchanging of vows were sealed with a kiss, it was official. Transportation was provided to and from in a trolley. “From the photo booth from Photogenica to the live Mariachi band to the Brazilian style meat station (yummy), everything about this wedding screamed UNIQUE,” she said. Guests were escorted to their seats via a yarn art chart. Tables were decorated with teal linens, white napkins, testing tube centerpieces, disc numbers, and mad libs at each place setting, surrounded by folding padded chairs. For extra entertainment, there was board games too. “In case Tina looks familiar, it’s because I had the honor of shooting her sister Sam’s wedding earlier this year,” Mohammadian said. “I’ve been so fortunate to building an amazing relationship with this family, so being a part of another celebration was a joy!” A two-tiered fondant-frosted cake was cut and served for dessert concluding dinner. The favors? Personalized koozies. At the end of the night, the newlyweds exited amongst a sea of sparklers and jetted off to their honeymoon.
Anetra and Alioune were married in a traditional ceremony at St. Luke AME Church in New York, N.Y. followed by a reception at The Surf Club on the Sound in New Rochelle, N.Y. on October 4. “We loved the grand staircase, the beautiful grounds, and the water view,” Anetra said. The bride wore a v-neck lace fit ‘n’ flare wedding gown with a keyhole back, accessorized with her hair in an updo, fingertip-length veil, jeweled sash, and a pair of Audrey Brooke Taylor peep-toe pumps, while the groom wore a three-piece light gray suit, accessorized with a striped bow tie. Bridesmaids wore long satin navy blue dresses in various necklines and carried bouquets of roses, lilies, and billy balls. Fun fact: there was three flower girls, one ring bearer, and four attendants. “The torrential rains stopped and the sun came out just an hour before the ceremony was to begin,” she said. “I thought it would be a complete wash out.” Guests arrived at half past four o’clock. Once the exchanging of vows were sealed with a kiss, it was official, almost 250 witnessing. Cocktail hour began with signature “Double A” drinks, which consisted of citron vodka, blue curacao, and white cranstrawberry juice, and reception shortly thereafter inside the ballroom. Tables were decorated with white linens and napkins, tall candelabra centerpieces dripping with crystals, picture frame numbers and favor boxes at each place setting, surrounded by upholstered chairs. “One of my favorite moments was our first dance,” Anetra said. “Alioune sang to me as we danced to ‘When I’m With You’ by Tony Terry.” The newlyweds’ best advice? “I would suggest that they plan well ahead of their wedding date, create and stick to a budget because it can be extremely costly, and also be ready to deal with the headache of the dreaded guest list,” she said. “I’m an event planner, so the planning of the wedding was a breeze, but my only headache was when it came time to receive RSVPs.” A week later, they jetted off to their honeymoon in Bora Bora.