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Sweet Smiles + DIY Details For This Rustic Barn Wedding

Having attended college in the Finger Lakes I’m one of the lucky ones who knows the secret of their beauty. But that cat is about to be let out of the bag with these pics by Alexandra Meseke; she captured this beautiful Bride looking her finest (thanks to Gabriella New York) and the super sweet nuptials of her and her new hubby. See it all in our Vault and join me in the Finger Lakes Fan Club right this way.

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Styles
Al Fresco

From the Bride… When Andy and I began planning our wedding, we imagined a day filled with love, laughter, music and dancing. From the moment we saw Suzanne Fine Regional Cuisine, we knew we had found the place for our celebration; Bob and the entire Suzanne staff were warm and inviting, the farmhouse and barns were beautiful, their flower and herb gardens were vibrant, and the pond out back with a view of Seneca Lake was simply stunning. The fact that their food is absolutely incredible truly set the venue over the top.

I worked on a number of DIY projects for the wedding, and also have a few people to thank for their help. My dad cut, sanded, and stained wood for me to paint with table numbers. My sister helped me prepare watercolor escort cards and also perfectly sewed the banner I made for Andy’s nephews to carry (as a surprise, she also sewed a beautiful handkerchief for my “something blue”!). I made a number of other signs as well and loved being hands on with creating each piece. We eventually brought in the Events Company to help tie the overall feel together. They provided rentals, such as linens, vintage chargers, chandeliers and lanterns, and coordinated our sparkler send off. They also created a fantastic lounge space in the barn with tufted ottomans and chairs, which was very important because we had dinner in a tent just outside the barn and used the barn as a giant dance floor. This lounge area was key in making sure all of our guests felt included in a long night of dancing. Alyssa of the Events Company was also our day-of coordinator, and she kept everything moving smoothly!

We were incredibly lucky with the weather on our wedding day – it was 80 degrees in late September in Upstate New York! The leaves had started changing and everything felt magical. I knew that I wanted to focus on the natural beauty of the property, so we decided to keep the ceremony site simple with a circle of white rose petals. One of my favorite moments was stepping into that circle of petals with Andy to exchange vows and be married by our dear friend Lucas, who blew us away with his heartfelt and personal speech. We are also both very connected to family, so it was important to us to involve family members in the ceremony. My parents walked me down the aisle, which began on a beautiful tree lined path. Our siblings stood on our respective sides. Andy’s nephews carried a banner reading “Uncle Drew Drew, here comes your bride” and were so adorable in their tuxes and Converse sneakers. My aunt Brenda and our close friend Brian did readings. We also incorporated small elements of our heritage. During the ceremony and cocktail hour, Tim Ball and Sophie Orzechowski played Irish music, including a beautiful rendition of “She Moved Through the Fair” for the processional. The flower crown, ringing of bells as we were pronounced husband and wife, reading of an Eavan Boland poem, thistle boutonnieres and tartan pocket squares were all small nods to our family history.

I also really cherished the moments walking alone with Andy to join the cocktail hour. Immediately following the ceremony, we took couples shots with Alexandra as our guests began enjoying cocktail hour. When we finished up with the photos, Andy and I walked through Suzanne’s gardens to join the celebration. As we approached hand in hand, ready to join all of the people we loved, I was overwhelmed with an indescribable feeling of excitement and calm. It was incredible to see all of our loved ones gathered in one place, laughing and celebrating, and to observe everything briefly from afar. This was a fleeting, but wonderful moment before joining everyone for a long night of incredible toasts, great food, and dancing.

Through it all, we were so grateful to have Alexandra and Michael of Alexandra Meseke Photography with us every step of the way. Alexandra offered fantastic advice throughout the planning process, from sketching the path of the sunset at our ceremony site to reviewing timelines and recommending that we plan for golden hour photos in the wildflower fields across from the lake. Together, Alexandra and Michael are such a comforting force that it almost seems like you’ve got close friends by your side. And their talent and intuition is amazing, they captured the feeling of our wedding day perfectly.

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Peruse more rustic weddings here!

Photography: Alexandra Meseke Photography | Floral Design: Whistlestop Florist | Cake: Connie Decker Cakes | Bride's Shoes: Loeffler Randall | Rings: Bario Neal | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Bill Levkoff | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Yoo | Makeup: Erica Abdo | Hair: Adagio Salon | DJ: Select Receptions | Venue: Suzanne Fine Regional Cuisine | Bridal Boutique: Gabriella New York Bridal Salon | Decor Rental: The Events Company | Live Music: Timothy Ball And Sophie Orzechowski

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Say “I do” in Style Aboard The Duchess

There’s saying “I do” in style, and then there is saying “I do” aboard The Duchess, an insanely gorgeous yacht that is equal parts fun AND sophisticated.  Think fabulous contemporary decor, a floating rooftop (!) and panoramic views of NYC that will wow every.single.one of your guests.  I mean, celebrating your newlywed status floating past the city you love? Sooo glamorous.

Whether it’s enjoying the newly built Duchess Lounge on the yacht’s second deck, sipping cocktails from their full-service bars or partying the night away on their oversized, hardwood dance floor, The Duchess has everything (and I mean everything) you’ve ever wanted when it comes to hosting your dream wedding. I’m talking climate controlled interiors, a state-of-the-art sound system (hello, live music or DJ) and outdoor furniture perfect for lounging.  Not to mention The Duchess’ sister property, Fish Bar, is THE place to host your rehearsal dinner, a fab cocktail party or even your reception.  We love them.

Whether you plan on an intimate “I do” with eight of your nearest and dearest or want to host a sit-down dinner for 400, contact The Duchess TODAY to begin your journey to that dream day. Star gazing is totally included, my friends.

the-giveaway

What: The Duchess is giving away a romantic dinner for two at their sister property, Fish Bar! (Value $200, Gratuity Not Included)

How: Simply leave a comment below telling us why you love yacht weddings! (Ex: They are sooo unique!)

Who: One lucky winner, chosen completely at random, will be announced right here on SMP on Friday, June 17, 2016.  For terms and conditions, click here.  Good luck, loves! xo

Photography: Allan Zepeda (Image 2,4) + I Do Weddings (Image 1,3)

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Designer Dress. A-List Florist. Celebrity Photographer. This Manhattan Wedding is a Must-See.

No one does a wedding like New York City — just look at this Manhattan affair. With a gorgeous Lihi Hod dress from Gabriella New York, a navy velvet Chanel clutch, lush florals from the talents at Putnam And Putnam, and a Momofuku Milk Bar, this day was as chic and iconic as the city itself. And it was captured to perfection thanks to Trent Bailey Studio. Head to The Vault to fall in love with it all!

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Styles
Elegant

From The Bride…Shay proposed during a ski trip to Utah. We were with a group of friends – all of whom were experienced skiers or snowboarders. For me – it was my first time skiing ever. On the first day we went out, I spent most of the time on the bunny hill and really enjoyed it, and bragged to Shay that I wasn’t falling at all and was ready for the real mountain. Shay obliged, but said “if you’re not falling, you’re not trying!”. I was sure that I was just a freakishly good at skiing, and went confidently down the mountain and of course found myself falling non-stop, until the last fall when I felt something happen to my knee. I was sick from it, and all our friends and Shay convinced me that my knee was probably just “bruised” and that we should slowly go down and then we could go home. After finally making it down and some hot chocolate, we drove back through the valley and stopped at a pretty snow covered campsite. I was certainly not in the mood to get out of the car, but didn’t want to be the party pooper and joined the group. Shay and I went off to a beautiful tree and snow canopied clearing, and it was there that he got down on one knee and proposed. Needless to say, it was the last thing I expected after falling down the mountain, but immediately cried tears of joy and said yes! I forgot about the knee until the next day when it ballooned to the size of a cantaloupe. That week I found out that I completely tore my ACL, and needed surgery. Long story short – I tore my ACL and then Shay proposed an hour later. It was definitely one of the best days of my life.

We wanted our wedding to feel unique, personal, and we wanted everyone to have a good time. We started looking the NY area and the Bowery Hotel was the third and final place we looked. It was a no brainer – the space felt really special, beautiful, and timeless. And it was six blocks from our apartment, and there was something really awesome about the fact that our wedding was in our neighborhood. That made it feel distinctly personal.

The design at the Bowery is already amazing, and so we did not need to do much more to dress it up beyond flowers. Putnam & Putnam was our first choice among the florists we looked at, and their prior work was inspiration in itself. Their aesthetic and vision is exactly in line with our taste, and so it was easy to really let them take have at it. Everything was stunning, particularly the candlelit backdrop where we said our vows.

A lot of the inspiration for other details were driven by our shared history. Our wedding DJ was DJ Baby Blu – he DJs at Brooklyneer on Friday and Saturday nights and we always have a blast dancing there. Long before we were engaged we both said to each other that he should play at our wedding. Our wedding cake was Momofuku Birthday Cake – the same cake that I got for Shay for his 30th birthday and we both said then that it would be the cake at our wedding (and it provided inspiration for our friends’ wedding too!). The recessional that the musicians played was from Hans’ Zimmer’s “You’re So Cool (part of the soundtrack of one of our favorite movies – True Romance). Our photographer worked at a friend’s wedding and produced amazing, dreamlike photos for them. My hair and make-up was done by Mala – the same woman who has done my hair (and my sister’s) for the last ten years. Our favors were photos from the photobooth Mashbooth – this was such an easy decision since we can never resist a photobooth.

What also made the wedding really special was our ceremony. Our friend Laura Goode officiated. She is a writer, poet, and filmmaker, and she worked with us and our parents for months to put together a really thoughtful and personal ceremony. She translated our relationship beautifully, and our guests couldn’t stop talking about it. We are so lucky she agreed to help us out.

We are not the most DIY of people – although we did a lot of planning ourselves and Amanda at the Bowery did the rest of the heavy lifting (and she did an amazing job, as did the rest of the staff there!). The most tangible DIY element was the wedding programs – our friend Lucy sent us a template and I played around with it to make it our own, and printed them at Paper Presentation on 17th street. The morning of the wedding I was still threading the programs with the ribbon and had to enlist my mom, sister, and friends to help finish them!

For me, walking through the doors and down the aisle with my father was so surreal. It was absolutely stunning to see our closest family and friends in one room, and to have Shay at the end the aisle. Holding hands and saying our vows was the best part of all. And funnily enough, another favorite moment was when we accidentally forgot to exchange rings so we did so right after the ceremony with our parents and siblings circled around us.

The party was a blast and to this day we keep hearing stories from our friends about their versions of the night. And to top it off, we had our friends drinking a special cocktail named “if you’re not falling, you’re not trying”. Many of them were trying very hard that night.

Advice:
– Try to keep it personal! And it doesn’t need to involve a lot of DIY to be personal if that’s not your jam.
– There’s inspiration beyond pinterest! I actually found Putnam & Putnam and my dress designer (Lihi Hod) on instagram.
– Something will go wrong but you probably won’t know, so don’t worry. It’s beyond your control.
– Have fun with it! It’s only one day and the most important thing is the marriage. Planning is a good chance to figure out how you navigate through some difficult situations together.

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Photography: Trent Bailey Studio | Floral Design: Putnam And Putnam | Wedding Dress: Lihi Hod | Cake: Momofuku Milk Bar | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Packham | DJ: DJ Baby Blu | Groom's Attire: Sebastien Grey | Venue: The Bowery Hotel | Bridal Boutique: Gabriella New York

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