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Backyard Seaside Massachusetts Wedding

All the weddings we feature here on SMP are beautiful (Pretty is in our name, after all), but every so often, I stumble upon a wedding that’s extra special. This is one of those weddings. One of the reasons why? The Fiddler on the Roof flashmob planned by the Bride’s mom and sister to kick off the reception. But there are so many more—see them all captured by Rachel Red Photography in THE VAULT!

Al Fresco

From the Bride…Anthony and I met as seniors at Union College. After a month months of casually seeing each other, he officially asked me to be his girlfriend on March 6, 2011. Once we graduated, Anthony moved from his hometown of Wickliffe, OH, to be with me in Boston. Three years later on July 25, 2014, he proposed at my family’s beach house in Gloucester, MA!

Our wedding ceremony took place on September 12, 2015 in the same spot where we became engaged. With a huge lawn overlooking the ocean, we couldn’t imagine getting married anywhere else. Growing up, I spent a lot of time in Gloucester and that’s where we spend the majority of our summer weekends now. It has always held a special place in my heart, and has become one of Anthony’s favorite places as well.

We wanted to personalize our ceremony as much as possible. We walked out of my neighbor’s house during the ceremony, which is the same house where my great-grandparents met and became engaged, and our wedding date was my grandparents’ anniversary. To remember those we have lost, Anthony wore a tie clip that belonged to his grandfather, and I wore my great-grandmother’s engagement diamond in a necklace. Anthony and I decided to tie a fisherman’s knot instead of lighting a unity candle, as an ode to the culture of Gloucester. We opted to have Beatles themed music throughout the day, because the song Oh, Darling was our song in college. I walked down the aisle to In My Life, and we shared our first dance to Two of Us.

Our reception was held at the Peabody Essex Museum in Salem. When we first walked into the museum, we immediately knew that’s where we wanted to have the wedding. It was the perfect mix between classic and modern, a blend of both our styles, and was more unique than anything else we had seen.

Anthony’s family is Italian, and my family is part Chinese, so we tried to fuse the two cultures together. We did family style Italian food, played Dean Martin throughout dinner, and danced the traditional Tarantella. For the Chinese side, we used a traditional Chinese wedding basket to hold cards, and our cake topper was the Chinese symbol for ‘double happiness,’ which is a sign of goodness and marital joy. Our favors were the traditional Italian almonds, with a double happiness charm enclosed.

One of my favorite details was the surprise flash mob that my mother and sister had planned. We had asked our minister to give a blessing before dinner, but he instead sang Sabbath Prayer from Fiddler on the Roof. After he was finished, wedding guests started jumping from their seats singing the song To Life, from the same show. I had been in a production of Fiddler on the Roof when I was younger, along with several family members and friends. Sabbath Prayer was also sung at my mother and step-father’s wedding years ago. It was a total surprise for Anthony and I, and a great way to kick off the party!

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Photography: Rachel Red Photography | Cinematography: Well Spun Wedding Films | Floral Design: Garden Designs By Kristen | Wedding Dress: Allure Bridal | Cake: Sheri Nuttoli | Ceremony Venue: At Home | Reception Venue: Peabody Essex Museum | Bride's Shoes: Belk | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew | Catering: Vinwood | Hair And Makeup: Dellaria | Band: Chris White Band | Groom's Attire: Men's Wearhouse | Flower Girl Dress: US Angels | Furniture Rentals: True North Rentals | Trolley: Salem Trolley | Veil: Nina

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Hamilton Hall Wedding in Salem, Massachusetts

Shane Godfrey never fails to capture weddings in a way that will stand the test of time, and this beauty below is the perfect example. Classic yet not stuffy, this couples’ stunning Salem soiree at the Hamilton Hall leaves us with a gallery that just shouldn’t be missed. See it all here.


From Shane GodfreyAmanda and Burt are my second couple of my 2014 season and their Hamilton Hall Wedding did not disappoint! I knew when I met them and they explained how relaxed and fun they wanted their day to be that we would be a good fit for one another. We had a ton in common aside from their wedding. They live down the street from me, work in publishing, and Burt is also in a band that the weekend prior to their wedding, played with a friend of mine’s band at the Lizard Lounge in Cambridge. I had somehow never been to Hamilton Hall in Salem Massachusetts to photograph a wedding before and after this wedding I cannot wait to go back! The hall is lit by huge windows that run along the sides of the main ballroom and across the street there is a charming park which is a perfect place for photographs, especially as the sun is setting as our situation was on this day. They had both the ceremony and reception on-site, and the entire day was filled with love and laughter by both the couple and their guests as it was a smaller, more intimate wedding of a hundred or so people. I can’t say enough about this amazing couple and I can’t wait to run into them around the neighborhood!

Photography: Shane Godfrey Photography | Floral Design: Audrey's Flower Shop | Wedding Dress: Maggie Sottero | Ceremony Venue: Hamilton Hall | Reception Venue: Hamilton Hall | Caterer: Vinwood | Makeup: Rouge Cosmetics

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Peabody Essex Museum

Choosing your wedding venue sets the tone for your entire wedding weekend. So why not pick a locale that’s totally unique? Enter, Peabody Essex Museum. Located in the heart of historic Salem, Massachusetts, this stunning space has three incredible rooms, as well as an outdoor garden area, that will have your guests wowed.

The Peabody Essex Museum is the perfect combination of warm + historic along with clean + modern, which makes it easy for any couple to see their wedding day vision come to life! Featuring the contemporary Atrium (which transforms beautifully from daylight to dramatic evening light), the historic + elegant East India Marine Hall and the Bartlett & Copeland Galleries which open up to the stunning Asian Gardens, this venue simply has it all.  The central location puts guests close to restaurants, attractions and hotels all within walking distance!

Thanks to changes in their renovation schedule, there are still lots of Saturday night dates available at the Peabody Essex Museum in 2015. For tons more information and to book your wedding date, head over here!

Photo Credits: Ned Jackson Photography | Kevin Liang Photography | Sherrell Photography