SUBMIT WEDDING
Two Stylish Gents, One Incredible Italian Engagement

“Stylish” doesn’t even begin to describe the engagement session of Tom and Tim. In fact, these two gents took their impeccable sense of fashion and paired that with the backdrop of Tuscany for absurdly romantic photos captured by Rebecca Yale. Join us on their trek through Italy with lots more right over here.

From Rebecca Yale Photography My favorite thing about engagement sessions is they get to be a little slice of life so is there anything better than a destination engagement session which can perfectly capture the memories of an incredible trip exploring the Tuscan countryside? I spent a lovely Fall weekend photographing the incredibly sweet (and fashionable) Tom and Tim at Il Borro, a 1000-year-old castle estate, and medieval village in Tuscany owned by the Ferragamo family.

Tim, a former bronze medalist Olympic Ice Skater, was celebrating his master’s degree from NYU and of course their recent engagement. Tom popped the question at the historic Chanler in Newport, RI, where the couple will say their I Do’s next year. The trip was spent wine tasting, sightseeing in Cinque Terre, truffle hunting, shopping and eating way too much incredible Italian food. Minus a little rain in Cinque Terre we lucked out with a perfectly gorgeous Fall weekend, getting to enjoy the bright red leaves crawling up the wine caves and the perfect little breeze as we explored the medieval town.

The Proposal

From the Grooms… Planning an engagement proposal is very involved as there are many moving parts. For Tim and I, it started about 18 months before I actually proposed. In a non-traditional move, I mentioned to Tim that one day I could see us getting engaged. However, it would happen only after he went back to school to pursue a Masters in his field. With the proposal out there, I assumed it would be at least two to three years before we would potentially have serious conversation around being married; after all, at this time, marriage equality wasn’t even passed in New York yet and it was well before the Supreme Court decision made same-sex legal across all 50 states. But, Tim applied and was accepted into NYU Stern’s Masters program by that Fall 2015.

During the time that Tim was in school, I spent a great deal of time looking into unique options for a potential engagement. Ideas ranged from watches to cuff links, to bands, to an actual diamond, to just words. At the end, I worked with a jewelry designer in designing a unique diamond ring for Tim for our future engagement. This process took six months from start to finish. With the ring completed in late March 2016, I reached out to his parent’s to schedule a weekend together in early April while Tim was preparing for a series of exams with his programs. I arrived at his parents’ home in Arlington Heights, IL with a bottle of champagne and ring in box. His parents had a very strong idea of why I was there as their smiles were cheek to cheek upon walking in. Tim wasn’t aware that I flew to be with his parents for the weekend specifically; I mentioned that I was in the area for work and figured I’d stop by and spend time with them while he focused on his school work.

I asked Tim’s parents for their blessing to have the honor of asking Tim to marry me. His parents were beyond excited and we began celebrating from that point forward until that Sunday, which is when I headed back to New York to see Tim. Tim asked what exactly I was doing with his parents that weekend. I noted we were shopping for his graduation gift. So, upon returning home to New York on Sunday afternoon, Tim demanded that I share with him what I brought back for his graduation gift from his parents. The only thing I brought back was his ring.

Tim insisted on seeing the gift and went through all of my luggage. Fortunately, I had the ring in my pocket. I realized at this time that I was not safe in our home with the engagement ring – and with time, he was going to find it. So, we went for a long walk along the Hudson River. We ended up walking to where we first had cocktails together, Orient Express. We were the first guests of the day as they opened at 5:00pm. We ordered a cocktail and Tim inquired about his graduation gift from his parents. I started to laugh; I had no choice because of what I knew and he didn’t. Also because I was pretty sure that my perfectly planned proposal was about to be replaced by an impromptu proposal. Tim looked at me, grinned and asked what was so funny. I turned to him, took his hand, went into my pocket to pull out “nothing” and ask for his hand in marriage. Tim looked at me and sternly said, “this is not funny. You have repeatedly asked bent down on your knee before and proposed, you have repeatedly asked him in public for my hand, and you’re doing it again.” To which I replied, you’re right. Let me try one more time. So I went back in my pocket to search for the ring (mind you, I couldn’t find it in my pocket the first time as it was stuck in the crevice of the pocket) and presented Tim with a ring and a request for his hand in marriage. Tim was in shock and couldn’t believe it had actually happened. But it did. We toasted over another round of cocktails and made our way back to Perry Street to celebrate.

It wasn’t the proposal that I had spent the past few months planning in advance. However, I wouldn’t have changed it for the world as it brought us full circle from where we first fell love in one another to making our relationship “official” with a proposal.

Vault CTA

Vault CTA

App CTA

App CTA

Photography: Rebecca Yale Photography | Rings: Custom by Anari Jewelry | Belt + Boots: Salvatore Ferragamo | Black Blazer: John Varvatos | Blazer (Cinque Terre): Hugo Boss | Boots (outfit 2): Gucci | Film Processing: Richard Photo Lab | Grey Blazer: Ermeneglildo Zegna | Jackets: Salvatore Ferragamo | Jeans: AG Jeans | Location: Il Borro | Pocket Square: Hermes | Sneaker Boots (outfit 2): Salvatore Ferragamo | Sweater: Ermeneglildo Zegna | Vest: Ermeneglildo Zegna | Watch: Cartier | Watch: Rolex | White Shirts: Thomas Pink

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
A Lake Como Wedding Planned Abroad

Why Italy, you ask? Well, for Anastasia and Devin, the question was really a matter of why not? They couldn’t imagine a more romantic spot to marry, especially when they came across the very same venue where John Legend and Chrissy Teigen tied the knot. Dive straight into their happily ever after beautifully photographed by Thecablookfotolab.

Colors
Seasons
Summer

From Anastasia AslanyanThe wedding of Anastasia and Devin will be always in our hearts. It was special. Special because of the love and happiness all around coming from each of the guests and of the couple. It was fantastic!

The location chosen is one of the most beautiful and amazing on Lake Como and it is not only because of the place but also because of the atmosphere and authenticity – historical villa, beautiful gardens and a fascinating terrace with 180 degree view on the lake and the mountains. As soon as you visit the villa you will understand why John Legend chose exactly this one. Anastasia and Devin decided to choose green and white theme to be more natural in the surroundings. The idea of the ceremony zone was to maintain the nature and the effect of air without making the standard arch but to create something more sophisticated and incorporated in the view. 

During the dinner, the band was playing life music while in between there were some dances and speeches. But the most touchy moment was when the groom played a song that he has dedicated to the bride…everyone was crying! After the dinner followed the cut of the cake with the hugest naked cake we’ve ever seen and the biggest fireworks done in Como. The party started with eight pieces band singing favorite and famous songs. The dance floor was on fire with all of the guests dancing in flip-flops kindly brought and prepared by the couple. All the team together with photographers and videographers were happy on that day because of so many smiles and kindness around as well as sincere and real emotions.

From the Bride…Devin and I met on January 31, 2016 through the traditional way, an app called “Coffee Meets Bagel”. We both live and met in San Francisco, California. It was my first date through this particular app, although I tried all of the websites and apps before. The first date went well, we couldn’t stop talking to each other. Devin dropped me off at home like a real gentleman and I knew he had a lot of potential. We went on a date a week for the first 4 dates since I was traveling a lot. I invited Devin to my house in the wine country for a weekend and since then we haven’t spent a day without each other.

Fast forward to December 12, 2016, a little over 10 months after our first date Devin proposed to me on a mountain in Tahoe, California while skiing. Devin is a great skier and would ski for a living if we could live on that kind of salary. Guess what he proposed with? Coffee in a carry mug and bagel with cream cheese hidden in his backpack.

I went to New York to try on some dresses. I don’t like shopping (unless it’s for shoes), so I was in love with the first dress I tried on. It was simple in the front and the back was wow, sheer back with a long, long train. I tried some more dresses in California, but nothing looked better than the first dress. I decided that it was meant to be and ordered that dress. I made a second dress for dancing, but the first dress was the “star”.

Why did we pick Italy? Well, firstly it’s Italy, secondly it’s Italy and thirdly it’s Italy! Pasta, pizza, wine, history, nature and beautiful culture. When we started thinking of a venue, number one thing we wanted for our special day was to have an outdoor wedding. Naturally being in San Francisco we looked into Santa Cruz or the Wine Country. I helped with a few weddings before as a hoppy and didn’t like United States winery restrictions with hours and vendors. We went to the Italian Alps to meet my family for Christmas 2016 and I thought of Lake Como, Italy, because it was 2 hours away from where we were staying and I spent a week there in the summer 2014. We made an appointment with the first wedding planner that responded to us and visited a few potential locations.

I found Italian Easy Weddings with two partners, one of them was Russian. That worked out perfectly, our wedding ended up bilingual. I am from Uzbekistan, my family still lives in Russia. Italy was 5-8 hours for my family and many of our friends are from the East Coast. Our host, photographer, videographer and DJ were all Russian speakers and my family felt like home. The venue we picked, Villa Pizzo, was suggested by our wedding planners, it wasn’t even on our radar. It was the most amazing place and ceremony and reception were all on one property. Plus John Legend and Chrissy Teigen got married there. Though I think our wedding was more beautiful. My husband plays piano and sings too, so we had a grand piano on the stage for him to sing, just like John Legend. Villa Pizzo was available on July 4th and there were fireworks on the lake, not for us but everyone at our wedding thought it was for us.

Needless to say, we are still on wedding high. The beauty of Lake Como is indescribable, the food is the tastiest in the world, the talents of the band, photographers, wedding planners, florist and decorators is top notch. Due to the beauty of the manicured gardens and the scene of the green alps and the lake, we wanted to keep the decor simple, green with a little bit of white to blend in rather than stand out. Needless to say, we are still on wedding high. If we could get married every year, we would. We had no stress before, during or after the wedding, everything was just smooth and perfect.

Vault CTA

Vault CTA

Photography: Thecablookfotolab | Cinematography: Lavender Bicycle | Event Planning: Anastasia Aslanyan | Floral Design: rattiflora | Stationery: Letter B | Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Rings: Custom from A&J Jewelers | Catering: AFM | Lighting: Blunotte Events | Band: Blunotte band | Groom's Attire: Hugo Boss | Venue: Villa Pizzo | Bridesmaids' Robes: Plum Pretty Sugar | Makeup Lessons: Salt Spelt Beauty

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here
These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
The Dreamiest Al Fresco Destination Wedding EVER

What could possibly be better than a wedding in Tuscany? How about a wedding in Tuscany with Peter & Veronika behind the lens. Yeah, we’d say that tops the charts. An al fresco celebration complete with gelato and the dreamiest tablescape we’ve ever seen, it’s all waiting for you to fan favorite in The Vault!

Colors
Seasons
Summer
Settings
ChurchResort
Styles
Classic

From the Bride…I never imagined I would be married at a spectacular Agriturismo in the heart of Tuscany, Italy. If there is one thing I’ve learned from my husband, it’s that life is always full of surprises. I met Ben while we were both studying at the University of Toronto. Born and raised in Munich, Germany, he thought he would only stay in Canada for one year. Fast-forward five years, and Ben was not only still in Canada, but we were also engaged with two cats. So why Italy as our choice of destination? We each come from two very different (but amazing!) cultures. I am proud of my Canadian roots; and Ben is equally as proud of his Bavarian heritage. We wanted to have our wedding somewhere that was ‘neutral’ – not overly Canadian, and not overly German. In 2014, we rented a car and explored the picturesque hills of Tuscany, and it was love at first sight. Amazing meals, great wine, balmy weather, and beautiful scenery…we knew it would be the perfect location for us to tie the knot! And we could not have been more right.

Our main inspiration was one thing: family. We wanted an ambiance that was warm and inviting, with long tables that were reminiscent of family-style eating. We pictured our guests having a long, luxurious dinner together, with plenty of wine and smiles (in true Italian style). When we first visited Montelucci, we knew it was the perfect venue for us. It was both rustic and elegant, with an interesting history and lovely managers. We liked the fact that it was a working farm that produced great wine and olive oil, and this passion for freshness and sourcing local food came across in their meal preparation. They also had a beautiful garden area, and we knew right away that we would have our dinner and dancing beneath the stars, with the Tuscan hills as our backdrop.

Our colour palette was meant to reflect late summer, with bits of greenery, blush pink, off-white, fuchsia, and deeper burgundy accents. We also wanted to stay true to our Italian theme with garlands of olive leaves and garden roses. My maid of honour wore a blush pink dress, and our mothers also wore shades of nude and light pink. I also stuck with the tradition of ‘something old, something new…’ and was given a beautiful family heirloom: a white opal ring that my father had given to his mother when he was 18 years old. It was also important for me to have something that was made in Canada, which I found through the beautiful gold hair combs I wore. They were handmade in Vancouver, and they were the perfect addition to my bridal ensemble.

In the end, we decided to do a four-day wedding weekend for all of our guests, as many were traveling over eight hours, either by car or plane. And we were so happy with that decision: it was an amazing feeling watching 85 of our closest friends and family relaxing, chatting, laughing and enjoying themselves. The venue was the perfect fit for all of us, and we love that we created a weekend that everyone will look back on with fond memories. Although planning and organizing a destination wedding had it’s trying moments, everything executed even better than expected. All of the vendors we chose went above and beyond to make our day perfect, and we couldn’t be more happy with the final result. It was exactly what we hoped for, and more. The warmth and love from everyone who was part of our celebration was breathtaking, and it really was the perfect way to start the rest of our lives together!

Vault CTA

Vault CTA

Photography: Peter & Veronika | Event Planning: Marry Me In Tuscany | Floral Design: Fiorista La Gardenia | Wedding Dress: Willow by Watters | Bride's Shoes: Anniel | Hair + Makeup: Lidija Malinovskaja | Lighting: Wedding Music And Lights | DJ: Simone Alinari | Car Rental: Zephyrus Sienna | Venue: Montelucci Country Resort | Decor: Preludio Noleggi | Hair Accessories: Davie & Chiyo | Vintage Gelato Cart: Class Ricevimenti | Violinist + Harpist: Alma Project

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here