This neighborhood fête from the lens of Rima Brindamour is celebration of local loveliness. For when these reconnected childhood sweethearts married on their 7 year anniversary (!!) the Brooklyn Winery proved to be the perfect place. Striking a balance of spring florals and industrial beauty, every detail is downright delicious (including their menu options) and you can see it all in the gallery.
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From the beautiful Bride… Alex and I met on vacation with our families in Bermuda when I was 9 and he was 12. We didn’t see each other for nearly 12 years when we reconnected at a family function in 2008. We immediately hit it off, dated long distance for a year until he moved to New York, and then moved in together a few months after I graduated from college. In September 2013, Alex proposed during a trip to Europe, in front of the Eiffel Tower where we enjoyed a surprise picnic with our friends. Upon our return from Europe, we started planning the wedding, hoping to be married the following September in Westchester.
When our original venue fell through in January 2014, we were sent back to the drawing boards. Our thoughts immediately fell on the Brooklyn Winery, which we’ve lived next to for the past 4 years. It’s been a part of our story, as we shared a glass of wine there when we signed our lease on our current apartment, we frequent the wine bar on a regular basis, and we always admire the beauty and uniqueness of their weddings every time we walk by. We set up a meeting as soon as we could and booked the venue for May 30, 2015, which also happens to be our 7 year anniversary. We could not wait to bring our friends and family from near and far to experience our corner of the world for a weekend to celebrate our nuptials. It also didn’t hurt living half a block away from the venue, on top of having a year and a half to plan the wedding.
We wanted to strike a certain balance between a spring, floral themed wedding with the industrial beauty of the venue, and I think we did a wonderful job. We tried to maintain a springy, natural palette of peachy pinks and neutrals with bright floral greens. Since we weren’t having an outdoor wedding like we originally wanted, we tried to bring the outdoors inside by having lots of flowers and succulents to give a romantic, rustic, “garden-party” feeling to the venue. By sprinkling votives and hurricanes throughout the venue, we perfectly achieved that look, especially in the atrium, where the glass roof makes it feel like you’re underneath the stars. The venue itself is so beautiful that we didn’t need to go overboard with the decor, but it provides a great canvas to make it what you want it to be.
It was really important for us to choose vendors who were either friends/family or locally based, as we really wanted the wedding to be a celebration of us, our neighborhood, and our favorite things. One of our favorite vendors was our stationer, Swiss Cottage Designs, located in Carroll Gardens in Brooklyn. I cannot sing enough praise for these ladies! Courtney and her team perfectly captured the look we were going for and created some of the most unique and beautiful invitations we’ve ever seen!
Some vendors we knew personally were our DJ, JusB, a friend and former co-worker of Alex’s; my uncle, David Clason at Betteridge in Vail, Colorado, who designed and made my engagement ring and our wedding bands; our florist, Maureen Lanning at Bedford Village Florist in Westchester, a long time friend and colleague of my aunt, who did an absolutely amazing job and is a true artist in her craft; and Alex’s client, Anna Kim, who served as our Day of Coordinator. To keep it local, we ordered our cake from Momofuku Milk Bar in Williamsburg, and crafted our place card holders out of succulents purchased from Sprout Home, also in Williamsburg. Our welcome bags that we gave to guests staying at Le Jolie and the Wythe include local treats such as McClure’s pickle flavored potato chips and cookies from Momofuku Milk Bar.
We didn’t go overboard with the DIYing, but we loved how everything we did turned out. I work at an advertising agency and one of our producers had a bistro chalkboard left over from a shoot, much like the one that Brooklyn Winery places outside during their weddings with the couple’s names written in chalk on it. I knew it would fit in perfectly with the rustic chalkboard theme of the venue, so I took it home and used it to list our seating arrangements. Also, with the help of one of our amazing groomsmen, we spent the day before the wedding potting miniature succulents in adorable silver buckets to serve as our place cards, decor for the table, and favors.
One of my favorite parts of the wedding was the dress! I had my eye on the Reem Acra beauty since before we got engaged. My aunt and I went to Bergdorf’s one afternoon to see if we could score a same-day appointment. The woman at the front desk kindly told us we would have to come back another day, but when I spotted my dream dress hanging out front, she was so nice and fit us in for a super quick appointment. We were in and out of there in 45 minutes – I think I set some world records! Somehow I knew that the cap sleeves and twisted bodice would suit my body type perfectly, and as soon as I tried it on, I knew I had found my dress. Joan at Bergdorf’s couldn’t have been nicer, and I would highly recommend any of their saleswomen to assist with finding your dream dress!
I felt very strongly about my bridesmaids choosing dresses that made them feel confident and beautiful in their own skin. We tried on some great dresses but realized that they just wouldn’t work for everyone’s body types, and I wanted to avoid having one or two girls feel uncomfortable in the dress we chose. I ended up giving them a color scheme, a very loose theme and a Pinterest page to give them some guidance. In the end, I was so pleasantly surprised by how beautiful everyone looked both individually and as a group. Even though the dresses did not perfectly match, the hair, makeup and accessories brought everything together perfectly to create a cohesive look. I still can’t get over how gorgeous and glowing they were!
We held our rehearsal dinner at the Wythe Hotel, where we also stayed in the North 8th loft (we live on North 8th Street, so found it quite fitting). The loft has a beautiful private terrace, where we had a quick rehearsal with our family and bridal party before heading down to the private dining room in the cellar of the hotel. Reynard, the hotel’s restaurant, created an absolutely spectacular family style meal that set the tone for the weekend. Following the dinner, we headed over to Nita Nita, just a few blocks from the Wythe, where we enjoyed after dinner cocktails with family, our bridal party, and out of town guests. The following morning, the bridal party showed up bright and early to the Wythe where we relaxed and were pampered by our amazingly talented hair and makeup team, consisting of our hairstylist, Henry de la Paz (also a friend), and our makeup artist, Shai, who has become a friend in the process and just launched her own makeup line, Josephine Cosmetics! Alex and his groomsmen got ready at our apartment, enjoying Best Pizza (if you live in Williamsburg, you know it’s the best) and local Brooklyn Brewery beers.
Following our first look photos, taken in the courtyard of the Wythe, the bridal party ordered Uber SUV’s (because who needs rented limos anymore when you have them at the click of a button?) that took us over to the Brooklyn Winery. Prior to the ceremony, in between taking photos with the bridal party and family, we relaxed in the bride and groom’s suites as the guests trickled in. The Winery really has perfected the flow of their weddings – some of the compliments we heard the most from guests were that they were never without a drink (they offered glasses of sparkling wine as they entered the ceremony) and they never stood around wondering what was going to happen next. Immediately following the ceremony, we were swooped up to the parlor where the staff brought us sparkling wine and a sampling of all of our hors d’oeuvres. We then mingled with the guests for cocktail hour, and they brought us into the atrium to see the dinner set up before any of the guests. This was really a special moment for us as it looked so much better than we could have ever dreamt!
One of the reasons we chose Brooklyn Winery was for the delicious food. I can’t sing enough praises for their food! We tried to play with the stereotypical chicken and steak often served at weddings and chose buttermilk fried chicken and leg of lamb. Our guests were floored by how delicious everything was. Following dinner, we gave a quick toast, cut the cake, and headed to the dance floor for our first dance, “Let’s Stay Together” by Al Green (we saw him live at BB King’s a few years back, so this song has always been special to us). We danced our booties off (so much so that the cap sleeve of my gown ripped and I ran to my apartment to change into my after party dress early!) Following the reception, we walked down the block to Roebling Sporting Club, where we had an open bar and munchies like sliders and fries for our guests. We ended up heading to a friend’s rooftop a few blocks away for a surprise after-after-party, where they had a full DJ setup that kept us dancing until the wee hours of the morning! The following day, we checked out of the Wythe, had brunch at Rye with our siblings and best man, and headed to the airport to jet off to Hawaii for our honeymoon.
You probably can’t tell from the pictures, but I was sick with bronchitis throughout the entire weekend! With a little help from our friend who is a doctor, and so much love from all of our friends and families, we were able to overlook this slight inconvenience and have the absolute best weekend of our lives! The best part about getting married in our neighborhood is that every time we walk around Williamsburg and past our venues, it brings back all of the best memories and puts a huge smile on our faces.
Photography: Rima Brindamour | Floral Design: Bedford Village Florist | Wedding Dress: Reem Acra | Cake: Momofuku Milk Bar | Invitations: Swiss Cottage Designs | Bride's Shoes: Butter Shoes | Makeup: Sholayide Otugalu | Hair: Henry De La Paz | DJ: JusB | Grooms Attire: JCrew | Groomsmen's Attire: JCrew | Hotel: Wythe Hotel | Wedding Venue: Brooklyn Winery | After Party: Roebling Sporting Club | After Party Dress: Alice + Oliva | Bride's Bracelet: Ben-Amun | Bride's Clutch: Whiting & Davis Bags | Cake Topper: Alexis Mattox Design | Day Of Stationary: Yao Cheng For Minted | Engagement Ring, Wedding Bands, Bride's Earrings: David Clason At Betteridge | Photobooth: Brindamour Booth | Rehearsal Dinner Venue: Wythe Hotel | Succulents: Sprout Home | Welcome Drinks: Nita Nita