We absolutely love hearing stories of inspiration from Brides, especially when they’ve spent some time in the good ol’ Style Me Pretty Vault! It warms our hearts and makes us giddy to share your soirees every day. This Bride? Definitely turned on all the good feels. Being the little girl that dreamt of her wedding, she went on to intern for a celebrity wedding planner in high school. No wonder these captures from Ryon:Lockhart Photography are layered with gorgeous. Find it all in right here!
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From the Bride… Anyone that knows me even just a little bit knows that I am the epitome of a bride that has been planning her wedding since she was a little girl. So much so that I even interned for celebrity wedding planner David Tutera during my senior year of high school, which only further primed me for my time as a bride-to-be. From the very moment that Jerry and I got engaged in breathtaking Sedona, Arizona, I could NOT wait to start planning the wedding of my—now our—dreams. And while our engagement did not take place in New York, the remainder of our love story, and wedding, is quintessentially a New York one. Jerry and I met on a cold winter night in January 2013 at La Cava Wine Bar in Manhattan, and despite it being after 1:00 AM in Midtown East of all places (the last place I would have ever thought I’d find my husband), the rest, as they say, was history.
Jerry and I sat down and brainstormed words that we hoped our spring 2016 wedding would embody: romantic, elegant, classic, sophisticated, and timeless – and while I may be biased, I must say that our wedding was all of the above. On top of that, Jerry and I really wanted to make sure that two additional themes were woven into every detail of our day: springtime and New York. After one jam-packed weekend of visiting venues, Jerry and I knew we had found THE one: Bourne Mansion in Oakdale, New York. The over-the- top historic mansion and its grounds complimented our wedding vision perfectly and set the stage for all of the other details to come.
I knew I wanted to play up neutral tones, especially since the venue served as such a timeless and elegant backdrop for our day, and I thought that bright colors would take away from that. We ended up choosing a dreamy, romantic, and spring color palette of white, cream, blush, champagne, and lots of mixed metallics. With that, I wanted to make sure we incorporated a lot of fun texture since our overall color palette was more muted. An important display of our color palette came down to our bridesmaids’ dresses, and I knew very early on that I did not want my girls in identical gowns. My eight bridesmaids ended up in stunning array of Jenny Yoo dresses representing a total of four colors (champagne, blush, gold, and pewter), three different fabrics (chiffon, tulle, and liquid charmeuse) and seven unique styles.
From there, it was easy to incorporate our color palette into every remaining aspect of the wedding: white and blush flowers, cream and champagne textured linens, gold and silver mercury candles and picture frames, and the list goes on and on. My absolute favorite part of wedding planning—albeit it was also the most stressful for me—was incorporating unique details and elements into our day. While it was really important to us that our wedding be traditional, I also wanted to make sure there were elements our guests had not seen before. For this, I relied heavily on bridal magazines and blogs (hello Style Me Pretty!) and Pinterest for inspiration and then Etsy for execution.
The very first detail I always knew I wanted to include was a custom monogram for our day. For as long as I could remember, I have always been obsessed with monograms, and for the first time in my life, I was able to put my initials side-by- side with my husband’s, which to me, was a really romantic display of our lives coming together on that day. I worked with an incredibly talented graphic designer from the non-profit I worked at to bring my vision to life. From there, we used the monogram, which had our first initials (S & J) in cursive enclosed by a laurel wreath, anywhere and everywhere: all printed materials (invitations, welcome bag tags, ceremony programs, and menus), cocktail napkins, drink stirrers, and even decorative pillows that were placed throughout the mansion in various lounge areas. This tied our wedding together beautifully and enabled us to have a cohesive brand for the day.
Another of my favorite décor elements was all of the wooden laser cut signs we incorporated. For starters, I found an amazing Etsy vendor, NarWall, that created a custom seven foot sign (yup, huge!) with our last name that was hung from the balcony in the ballroom and served as a backdrop for our photos – we were sitting directly in front of it at a King’s Table with our entire bridal party and their dates. Jerry and I decided to abandon the traditional sweetheart table and instead had a 28-person table running down the middle of the ballroom, at which we sat at the head overlooking the entire reception. To further ensure this table was a focal point in the room, our florist, Bride & Blossom, did an incredible job creating a garland filled with Italian ruscus, seeded eucalyptus, and lemon leaf with cream and blush peonies and garden and spray roses sprinkled throughout. The garland, coupled with silver mercury cylinders and votives and dozens of candles, created an incredibly romantic and regal look.
Since we were getting married at the end of April and Bourne Mansion had a stunning outdoor space in the back, we wanted to make sure we utilized this during cocktail hour. To honor a favorite pastime of Jerry’s, we created a bocce court in the back, complete with a wooden sign that read “Bocce Ball” and using our monogrammed bocce ball set that was gifted to us for our engagement. Another of my favorite projects was creating our hotel welcome bags, which we wanted to ensure screamed New York. To achieve that, we included some of our favorite New York products: Brooklyn Brewery beer (where we had our first date!), Original New York Seltzer’s naturally flavored soda, North Fork Chips, KIND bars, and New York Mets swag (where my husband works). All of these were stuffed into tote bags designed by me that had a map of New York State on it with the words “From New York, With Love”.
Last but certainly not least, my something borrowed was a gorgeous opal ring that belonged to Jerry’s late mother and that I wore on my right hand the entire day, honoring her and the incredible man that she gave me.
The most special of moments had to be when my 15-year- old niece, Kaya, sang Christina Perri’s “A Thousand Years” with our band during the reception. While we asked her to perform at our wedding, the song she chose and rehearsed for months was a complete surprise, and it was an incredibly emotional moment for us all.
Now for the unplanned, when Jerry and I entered the ballroom for our grand entrance, we were not only greeted by all of our loved ones, but also by ourselves: custom fathead cutouts of our faces were floating in the crowd, courtesy of our friends Abby and Sean. Jerry and I could not get over just how funny this was, and the entire night, the fatheads were being passed around the dance floor. Even nine months later, our guests still talk about just how funny and fun that was!
My advice… Whether you are engaged for over two years like we were or just a few months, try and enjoy the planning process, together. While it wasn’t always easy, my husband and I learned so much more about one another along the way, and it only strengthened our relationship and now marriage. At the end of it all, I could not have imagined a more perfect day and a more perfect man to marry, and we cannot thank the talented vendors enough that helped ensure our vision became a reality.
Photography: Ryon:Lockhart Photography | Cinematography: Arsenic and White Lace Photography + Cinematography | Floral Design: Bride And Blossom | Wedding Dress: Amsale | Cake: Campbell's Bakery | Ceremony Venue: The Parish of Saint Patrick | Reception Venue: Bourne Mansion | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Yoo | Hair and Makeup: The House Of Makeup | Calligraphy: Christina DellaValle | Band: Time Square Orchestra | Groom's Attire: Jos. A. Bank | Groomsmen's Attire: Joseph Abboud | Bridal Salon: Wedding Atelier | Bride's Hair: Ashley Stern | Custom Monogram: Miguel Rojas | Day-of-Coordination: La Bella Planners | Invitations and Paper Goods: Sincerely Jackie | Live Wedding Painter: Live Well Paint Often | Veil: Basia Custom Headdresses and Accessories