You know what I absolutely adore about weddings in Manhattan? It’s the way The City always seems to be a guest of honor. And, of course, it’s seems the most stylish couples decide to tie the knot there too. That combination never fails to produce the prettiest, most thoughtful parties – which is precisely the scenario that plays out in these gorgeous images from Cassi Claire at The Manhattan Penthouse. With gorgeous vintage touches, and a chic city feel – this is a gallery that should not be missed. See why here.
From Cassie Claire… For Rory and Kaitlin, February is a month of love and big life changes. Nine years ago, the couple started dating in February. Three years ago, the couple moved in together in February. And because the month had brought so much luck in the past, Rory proposed to Kaitlin last February. And this February…they got married! While there were certainly modern elements to the day (hello chic NYC penthouse venue!), the bride really embraced vintage finds and sentimental touches. The bride and her maids got ready at the historic Washington Square Hotel, where we all got a little emotional when Kaitlin’s mom saw her for the first time in her wedding dress! Kaitlin’s adorable vintage-shop-found fur pashmina was the perfect accessory to keep her warm on the rainy February day. The red book centerpieces and the red bridesmaids clutches were found at various vintage shops around New York City. The couple invited their favorite local musician to perform during cocktail hour. It was the perfect day!
From the Bride… After initially thinking we’d get married in the fall, somewhere outdoors, underneath the stars, Rory and I landed on the 17th floor of The Manhattan Penthouse, only a short walk from our Greenwich Village apartment. We had been dating for over 8 years before finally getting engaged, and had spent the last few years living together in NYC, planting our roots, and falling in love with the city along the way, so why not invite our friends and family to celebrate in the city we now called HOME.
The planning was pretty easy. Things just fell into place, and I think it’s because we focused on the things we love, incorporating as much of ourselves into the process, and working with passionate people we either already knew or were lucky enough to meet along the way. In the end, we created an experience that was uniquely personal, non-traditional, and above all, FUN!
My best friend’s father was our Deacon and our DJ was one of Rory’s friends and former colleagues. Both reminded us that this was “our wedding”. “And to make of it, what we wanted.” That set the tone for the wedding. While we worked closely with the Deacon on our ceremony, incorporating prayers, writings, and Irish traditions that fit our personalities, we worked with our DJ to create a playlist of songs we love. I’ll never forget how excited my bridesmaids became, once they heard the first chords of “Cosmic Love” (by Florence) and realized what they were walking down the aisle too; or the chills I got as I heard my entrance song, “Maps” (by Yeah Yeah Yeahs) being played across the loud speakers.
We also hired our favorite Red Lion performer, Steve Reilly to play and sing for the bridal party as we took pictures before the ceremony kicked off, as guests arrived, and during cocktail hour. Rory and I had spent many Saturday afternoons at the Red Lion, to enjoy Steve’s song and play, so it was amazing to be able to share this experience with our guests – set to a background of panoramic city views no less.
Resting on the 17th floor of an old building, the views from the Penthouse were stunning, especially when lit up at night, so for centerpieces we kept it simple– long stem candles on each table, with a single rose, and vintage books we collected at either local shops or on the city streets. Over the years, “vintage shopping” has become such a part of my personal style and life, that it was only second nature to incorporate past pieces and stories into other components of the wedding: For each of my bridesmaids, I bought them a red vintage clutch, either found at a local vintage shop or online. My bouquet was inspired by the bouquet used in Rory’s late Grandma Pat Donohue’s 1950 wedding. And for my “something borrowed”, I was lucky enough to wear Grandma Pat’s diamond watch, indefinitely set to the time 4:35. Happy Hour had never looked more beautiful. And it perfectly complemented my 1931 engagement ring, passed down from my Grandma Keaveney, and placed on my finger almost an exact year ago, when Rory proposed.
For party favors we worked with the same designer who helped me create our beautiful invitations and programs. Rory is an avid golfer, so we screened our custom logo with our names onto golf balls, and put them into a giant punch bowl for guests to grab. Amazingly, almost all of the golf balls had been taken by the night’s end, as we headed out for more fun at our after party!
Looking back on the planning process & the wedding itself, the best advice I received was, “not to sweat the small stuff” and “enjoy every minute” – and that I did. Most brides say that the night goes by so fast and in such a blur that you almost don’t remember it! And it’s true, the night flies. Before I knew it, our last song, “New York New York” was playing. But as the night progressed, I felt nothing but present…
And as for the next day: Well, I was glad we had our honeymoon to escape to, packed with amazing wedding memories, and knowing we were bound to share our next New Zealand adventure together!
Wedding Photography: Cassi Claire | Wedding Venue: The Manhattan Penthouse | Floral Design: Ariston Florist + Wholefoods | Invitations + Programs + Golf Ball Design: Simple GD | Wedding Dress: Elianna Moore via Demetrios Bridal Salon | Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Hair Piece: Haute Bride | Pashmina: Stella Dallas | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Lela Rose | Men’s Attire: Jean Yves via Jack Silver | Hair + Makeup: Miss Harlequin | Wedding Bell Wands: DIY | Favors: Golfballs.com | DJ: Ultimate DJ Entertainment | Special Musician: Steve Reilly | Hotel: Washington Square Hotel