We have two beautiful New York City wedding celebrations for you today from the always amazing Karen Wise. We've featured many, many of Karen's favorite's on Style Me Pretty and in the Best Of 2010 E-Glossy (p36-38). Whether it's from California, New York, India or anywhere in-between ~ if it's from Karen Wise, you know it's going to be great!
Beth and Josh were married at St. Mary's Church in Mount Vernon, New York. They celebrated in a gorgeous way at the Museum of the City of New York. All the details, from the tiniest to the most brilliant were captured in Karen's terrific style ...
Beth & Josh's wedding was featured in Elle Japan! Check it out on Karen's blog!
From the beautiful bride ...
While Josh and I met over 10 years before our wedding at college in DC, it was after college in NYC where we dated and fell in love - and so it was where we wanted to celebrate that love! When I found the Museum of the City of New York I was thrilled - it wasn’t a ballroom but it wasn’t a blank loft either - it was beautiful, unique and held so many possibilities. One look at the terrace, gorgeous marble staircase, columns, and french doors combined with the magic of being surrounded by NYC culture and I was hooked! Josh quickly agreed. We wanted our reception to be more than just dinner and dancing - having exhibits for guests to enjoy was the perfect addition.
Excited, I threw myself into planning and a world of indecisiveness. Wedding blogs quickly became a source of inspiration (and obsession) and my list of ideas grew and grew. It was so easy to get lost in all that prettiness. Some advice to new brides to be - the blogs are great, enjoy them, let them get you excited, find ideas - but then step away from the computer and find YOUR wedding vision. You can’t bring every great idea into one wedding, so pick a few that you love and go with it!
My mom has mentioned to me that she never saw my struggle between my fun, different side and my traditional side more obvious than it was during wedding plans. That says it all - I wanted the best of both worlds! During the planning I focused mostly on fun and different, while my more traditional husband helped balance it out (as he always does - balances me!). From the very beginning we knew we wanted our wedding day to be personal yet fun, traditional yet unique. So we ended up keeping the ceremony more traditional and the reception contemporary. We were married in the church Josh grew up in with Josh’s Godfather as our priest, which made the ceremony very personal and special. Our cocktail style reception added a modern element and was something new for most of our guests. Everyone always seems to enjoy the cocktail hour most at traditional wedding receptions, so we wanted to have an extended cocktail hour instead of a formal sit down dinner. Guests ate, danced, mingled and enjoyed the exhibits when they wanted. And Josh and I did the same!
Style Me Pretty was my favorite source of inspiration throughout planning and I ended up finding or confirming many of my vendor choices through the Little Black Book - Karen Wise, James Abel, Kathryn Murray. NY Magazine Weddings was also a great source - where I found MCNY, Canard Inc, Amanda Shackleton. When picking our vendors it was important to us that we chose people who really care about their work and care about the couples they work for. We chose vendors for their kindness and responsiveness just as much as we did for their quality of service. Our photographer was very important to us. We wanted to be sure our day was well documented in a way that really represented the day, nothing forced or fake. Karen Wise's photos inspired us over and over and after meeting her in person I knew she was a perfect fit. I had the most fun working with Kelven Book of Canard Catering. He was always very thoughtful, enthusiastic and excited for us and was always coming up with fun ideas to work within our budget and taste (mini ice cream cones and rice krispy treat pops were a big hit for dessert!). We used The Wedding Library as our day of coordinators and we wouldn't have gotten through the day without them. They helped us with vendor recommendations along the way, created our very detailed day of schedule and kept the reception moving. We met with a few florists, but when we met with James Abel we knew our decor would be in good hands. He understood our color scheme and that we wanted lush, elegant, not very organic arrangements and ones that wouldn't take over our small cocktail tables. We explained that we had three different spaces for the reception (the terrace, the downstairs for cocktails and dancing, and the upstairs for dinner). He very quickly came up with a way to incorporate our colors and favorite flowers with complimenting lighting, but still kept the feel of each space different, so our guests would be excited and intrigued as they moved around.
Our wedding didn’t have a specific theme, but it naturally took on a NYC feel due to the venue. Our Save the Dates had a NY theme, as did our guest book - a coffee table book "Cars, Culture and the City" which was an exhibit at the museum during our reception. Our colors were purple, green and white which we carried through the invitations, attire, flowers and decor.
I spent SO much time looking for the perfect purple bridesmaid dresses, but I didn’t really love any I found. I wanted my girls to wear dresses they enjoyed and felt pretty in. When we went shopping I told them I was open to them wearing different styles, different shades of purple, etc. I really didn't mind if they weren't “matchy matchy” To my surprise they ALL loved the same Priscilla of Boston dress. I loved it too, but wasn't happy with the shade of purple it came in. We decided to go with the clover green instead and I am so glad we did. The girls all looked beautiful and picking that green helped the color scheme fall into place. And I was able to incorporate the purple with my fabulous Italian shoes! As for my wedding gown, I never would have even tried it on if it wasn’t for one of my bridesmaids, but I absolutely adored it from the second I stepped into it. My attire was completed with my "something borrowed", the lovely little purse my grandmother used on her own wedding day 59 years ago and my “something old”, the diamond in my engagement ring which had belonged to Josh’s grandmother.
I absolutely loved our invitations. We ended up adding light green and white polka dot ribbon to hold the invitation set together in the envelope. We then used this as a starting point for other elements. Our ceremony programs, menus and place cards were printed on white card stock with purple ink in a font similar to that of our invitations. We added the polka dot ribbon to the menus to bring in the green and to coordinate with the invitations. We also had small ivory cups at the church holding dried lilacs for tossing. We wrapped these cups with a bow of the same ribbon. For the place cards, guest book note, and donation thank you note, we used silver picture frames to coordinate with the mercury glass vases our florist used. All the little details really came together in the end! And Josh was a HUGE help and very patient with me finishing all these little projects at the last minute.
Our wedding day turned out to be everything we wanted it to be and more. Of course some things went wrong and not all stress was averted, but the love and joy took over! All the planning paid off and the little details made the day pretty, but it was saying our vows in front of our family and friends and sharing our joy that made the day perfect. After all the wedding fun, we were off to Portugal and Italy to continue the celebration!
Photography: Karen Wise / Bridal Gown - Matthew Christopher “Imagine” / Traditional Veil - Moonlight Couture / Reception Veil - Sara Gabriel “Wendy” from Gabriella New York Bridal Salon / Bride’s Shoes - Butter / Necklace & Earrings - MMM Jewelry Designs / Bracelet - Swarovski / Bridesmaid Dresses - Priscilla of Boston Vineyard Collection / Bridesmaids’ Shoes - Kelly & Katie / Bridesmaids’ Jewelry - Ralph Lauren / Bridesmaids’ clutches - J. Crew / Flower Girl’s dress - J. Crew Crewcuts / Ceremony - St Mary’s Church Mt Vernon, NY / Reception - Museum of the City of New York - NYC / Planners & Invitations - The Wedding Library / Calligraphy - Kathryn Murray / Caterer - Canard Inc / Hair/Makeup - Amanda Shackleton / Flowers & Decor - James Abel Events / Church Altar Flowers - Creative Flowers / Rentals - Classic Party Rentals / DJ - popshop! Colleen Crumbcake /Cupcakes - Billy’s Bakery
We have another wedding from Karen coming up this afternoon. Don't want to wait? See it here!