Posts Tagged ‘Real Weddings’
It doesn’t get much better than spending a warm summer night on the Jersey shore, unless you’re celebrating love and a happily married couple at a location right on the water. It’s beautiful photographs like Jamie and Eric’s that truly represent “the calm before the storm”. Although this locale was destroyed during Hurricane Sandy, this seaside soiree has us not only reminiscing of sweet distant memories, but serves as a gentle reminder that there is hope for the future of the New Jersey coastline.
“The end of August is bittersweet, yet an exciting time for people (like us) who grew up on the New Jersey coast. Those few short months of summer heat start to dwindle away and the occasional breeze of cool air starts to give this feeling of new beginnings. But something else happens, too. The vacationers head home and the Jersey shore returns to its simple and beautiful form. It’s the way that we love it and the best time of the summer to beat the shore traffic, grab a good book, and soak in the last of what the beautiful summer days have to offer…in peace. That is why we chose August 25th. It was one of the last weekends of the summer and that nostalgia made it feel so right.”
“I only tried on about four gowns before I tried this one on and I knew it was the one. I felt like Marilyn Monroe in this dress! My mom, sisters, and best friend’s faces said it all when I walked out. I felt sexy and elegant.”
Joselyn of Majestic Entertainment captured the essence of the wedding day beautifully in a photojournalistic approach. Not only did she help calm the brides nerves before the church, but made everyone feel comfortable being in front of the camera. “Joselyn has such a great soul and has an incredible personality. [We] had a blast taking the beach pictures!” exclaimed Jamie.
Jamie’s bridesmaids wore floor-length pink silk and chiffon dresses with a flower accent.
When it came time to choose a reception location, The Water’s Edge made a great impression on Jamie and Eric. “We wanted a venue that matched our personalities. We had family coming from other countries so we wanted a strong representation of New Jersey. We also knew friends of friends who were married at the venue and they loved it. The window that looked out over the ocean (right behind the sweetheart table) was a great selling point. They also had lights to shine out over the water so everyone could see the ocean at night.” commented the groom.
Jamie and Eric shared their first dance as newlyweds to Etta James’ “At Last”, which the bride pre-recorded. “I wanted to showcase my wife’s beautiful voice and I think everyone really felt how personal our first dance was.”
Cocktail hour served guests a variety of options including a raw bar, mashed potato station, and taco station. Dinner began with a mozzarella and tomato appetizer followed by a strawberry and walnut summer salad. For dinner, guests had a choice of salmon, chicken Marsala or filet Mignon. Crème brulee and a chocolate fountain was served for dessert, in addition to wedding cake.
Tell us about your wedding proposal: Eric surprised me and proposed in our apartment when I least expected it. He decorated everything with flower petals and candles and hid a camera behind the couch to capture my reaction. He also played a video of pictured of us through the years and set it to the our favorite song, “No One” by Alicia Keys. I was a teary eyed mush and immediately knew that this was the start of something great.
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: Reading our vows to each other and looking into Eric’s tear filled eyes was a moment I will never forget.
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: My favorite memory that I won’t ever forget was the first time I saw Jamie walking down the aisle. It was difficult for me to choke back all the emotion I felt. She looked absolutely beautiful and literally took my breath away. Her dress was even more beautiful than I had imagined.
What was the most exciting part of planning your wedding? For me it was just experiencing new things with Jamie. We got to know each other a lot better and the process as a whole was fun. I would do it all again in a heartbeat (even with all the stress).
Where did you go on your honeymoon? We decided to be practical and splurge on a new home first to start our future together, The cruise is coming soon and we are very excited.
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? Have fun and don’t stress about the little details too much because life is beautifully flawed. Nothing will go exactly the way you want it to so don’t try to control every aspect of the day. Just go with the flow and enjoy every moment because it’s over in a heartbeat.
What are you currently enjoying or looking forward to as a couple? We are currently enjoying being first time homeowners and look forward to becoming first time parents this Fall!
Jamie & Eric
August 25, 2012
Merri-Makers at The Water’s Edge • Sea Bright, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: The First Presbyterian Tower Hill Church / Celebrant: Theresa Swenson / Reception Location: The Water’s Edge / Caterer: Merri-Makers / Photographer: Joselyn Diaz of Majestic Entertainment / Entertainment: Majestic Entertainment / Florist: Boxwood Gardens / Limousine Service: Andiamo Limousine / Cake Designer: Bella Palermo / Bridal Salon & Veil: Castle Couture / Shoes: Maggie Sottero / Formal Attire: Love Lane Tuxedo / Invitations: The Papery / Favors: Personalized Picture Frames & Personalized Hershey Kisses / Hair Salon: Milagro Spa / Makeup Studio: MAC Cosmetics / Jeweler: Jared, The Galleria of Jewelry / Honeymoon Locations: Caribbean Cruise
What better way to celebrate wedding Wednesday than by sharing this classic purple wedding from the Crystal Ballroom at the Radisson Hotel of Freehold! Lena and Christopher’s love story is as real as they come. The two were only fifteen when they met during the Babe Ruth Little League World Series and although they went their separate ways, they reconnected through a mutual friend years later. (Lena even admitted that she let Christopher slip past her once, but wasn’t willing to do so again!) Take a look at their magical images that 217 Photography brought to life beautifully.
“Starting around Monday of that week, the weather predicted rain. It was a high percentage and I had a feeling we weren’t getting around the rain. At first, I was devastated. We didn’t know where we’d take pictures and the flow of the day could have been ruined. For some reason, that morning when I woke up to pouring rain, it didn’t bother me one bit. I was overjoyed and so excited to be marrying my best friend, I shockingly forgot about the rain. The day was perfect. It was almost on cue when the rain stopped just in time for us to exit the church, get in some amazing pictures, and get to the ballroom before the rain started up again. The only way I can describe those events is pure luck.”
Lena’s bouquet featured white roses and a touch of lilac roses scattered throughout.
Chosen for its accommodating staff, a large ballroom to hold their guest list comfortably, and the ease of having on-location accommodations, the reception was held at The Crystal Ballroom at the Radisson Hotel of Freehold. Additionally, Lena and Christopher liked how the facility was in close proximity to their ceremony location.
Guests were served a variety of options during cocktail hour including a pasta station, carving station, smashed potato bar, eggplant rollatini, lemon chicken, fried calamari, and passed hors d’oeuvres of crab cakes, spring rolls, and wraps. For dinner, guests had a choice of ginger-infused salmon with honey glaze or filet mignon.
Lena and Christopher held the spotlight for their first dance as newlyweds to”I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz.
Tell us about your wedding proposal: I knew Chris was the one soon after we first started dating. We got along perfectly and he always made me laugh. Being around him was addicting and I felt as though I never had to try. Our relationship came natural. Chris proposed on the beach in Myrtle Beach on August 18, 2011. He had wanted to do it at sunrise, but I was in no mood to wake up that early on vacation. Luckily, he just went with the flow and did it on our early afternoon walk instead. The moment was a blur. I can just remember before and after, not during. I was so excited he said I could barely speak. I had a feeling the proposal was coming, but nothing can prepare you for the actual moment. It was perfect!
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: Chris and I promised each other that before the night ended, we would stop, look around and take it all in. As the night’s end neared, he took me by my hand and we stepped off to the side of the dance floor. We looked around and noticed all the people who were there to support us and our love for each other. We took in the laughing, dancing, and love that was all around that room. It was the most magical day and that moment really helped it sink in.
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: The best part of our ceremony was hearing us pronounced as Mrs & Mrs. Jones and getting to officially make Lena my wife. It was such a great feeling knowing it was done! We had waited a year to hear those words. All the planning had lead to that and it was great! At the reception, our first dance was very memorable. I remember looking at each other in amazement that our day had been so perfect. It was nice to escape with her for the 3 minutes we had together on the dance floor.
Where did you go on your honeymoon? Chris’s parents generously gifted us with our honeymoon! They had a timeshare through RCI and we were able to pick from hundreds of beautiful resorts. We wanted something that was fun and relaxing. When we came across the website for the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in the Dominican Republic, it looked perfect! It had so many different activities, restaurants, pools, and bars that could definitely keep us busy for a week. The reviews we saw were very positive and we couldn’t wait to try it out.
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? It’s hard to put this into perspective, but as much as you want the day to be perfect, it is only one day. It’s the promise you make to each other for the rest of your lives that is most important. The little things didn’t matter once I woke up that morning. All I cared about was marrying my best friend. The day will be perfect no matter what as long as you remember what you are gaining.
Lena & Christopher
July 20, 2012
Crystal Ballroom • Freehold, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: Saint Anthony’s Catholic Church / Celebrant: Deacon Jim Knipper / Reception Location: The Radisson Hotel of Freehold / Photographer: 217 Photography / Videographer: First Floor Films / Entertainment: DJ Available / Florist: Petal Pushers, Inc. / Limousine Service: Platinum Limo / Cake Designer: Chocolate Carousel / Bridal Salon: The Bridal Suite / Headpiece & Veil: Illusions / Shoes: Zappos / Formal Attire: Men’s Wearhouse / Invitations: Michael’s / Favors & Photo Booth: Go Festive / Hair Salon: Headways Salon / Makeup Artist: Unforgettable Faces / Jeweler: David’s Bridal / Honeymoon Locations: Hard Rock Hotel & Casino―Punta Cana, DR
It’s a beautiful day in New Jersey! We’re so excited that spring has arrived and that mother Nature finally is gifting us with warm weather. As you all enjoy the outdoors today, here’s a breathtaking Beach Chic wedding that will have you dreaming of an oceanfront oasis.
Tara wore a stunning Suzanne Neville wedding gown made of French Chantilly lace and a sewn-in corset.
From the morning preparations, ceremony, and throughout the reception, Shira Weinberger captured the special moments in a photojournalistic approach. “Shira perfectly captured the day without being intrusive or demanding, and we felt she managed to capture every single moment that brought us joy,” commented Tara. The couple was also pleased with their videographer, Exo Photography, who caught their wedding day on video.
Tara and Joe’s 8-pound Shih Tzu trotter made the perfect flower girl, along with two-year old Sophia.
Chosen for its beachfront property with spectacular views of the Atlantic Ocean and beautiful décor throughout the facility, the ceremony and reception were held at the Westhampton Bath and Tennis Club. Tara and Joe also liked that the facility was centrally located for their guests who were traveling from New York City and Westchester. It was a beautiful day for a beach wedding [just one week before Hurricane Sandy made landfall].
“Our ceremony was held on the beach, in the sand behind the Westhampton Bath and Tennis Club. It was the most beautiful backdrop you could imagine. The sun was shining bright and the waves were crashing behind us, all of this…just one week before Hurricane Sandy struck! All of our guests were given sandals and matching, engraved pashminas as they were seated onto the white wicker chairs lined with baby blue cones filled with petals…and placed alongside gorgeous lanterns with candles. One of my favorite parts of the ceremony was when we signed our Ketubah, which was anything but traditional! My younger sister made it from a picture from the Hubble telescope, knowing how much I love NASA and efforts to explore the final frontier!”
“Our cocktail hour was held outside near the pool area of the Bath and Tennis Club. It was a wonderful ambiance under the stars, with music from our brass quintet lighting up the night. Our guests couldn’t stop raving about the food and many stations. There was a raw food bar and pasta station among many others. The stations were decorated very beach chic and it felt like we were transported to an island in the Caribbean!”
“We really wanted to keep things beach-chic, not too traditional! So some our flowers were put in mason jars on the tables, alongside iron baskets and other rustic containers!”
Dinner began with a warm goat cheese and leek tart, followed by a choice of breast of chicken roulade or filet mignon for the main entrée. Guests were treated to miniature key lime pies, chocolate-dipped strawberries, doughnut holes with dipping sauce, and miniature ice-cream cones served butler style, in addition to their red velvet with gianduja mousse wedding cake.
After being announced into the ballroom as the new Mr. & Mrs., the couple participated in the traditional Horah, while Hank Lane Music & Productions got the party started with live entertainment. They played a variety of music that had guests dancing the entire night. In order to incorporate a feel of local music, Joe surprised Tara with a special guest appearance from Taylor Dayne, who serenaded the couple.
Tell us about your wedding proposal: I am a lifelong advocate of space, nasa and exploration of the final frontier. It is my great passion outside of journalism. So Joe filmed the 30-second commercial inside the Hudson River museum planetarium in Yonkers. As I was about to get off the anchor desk on 3-10-12, my director told me in my ear…oh don’t leave! There is a big mistake with the show that we have to correct. They said watch the monitor and we’ll play back the mistake. It was Joe’s commerical that aired instead! In 30 seconds, he compared our love to all the coolest miracles in the universe, but said of all the ‘stars’ I shine the brightest for him and would I accept his hand in marriage. Next thing I knew, Joe, my co-workers and my boss all came pouring into the studio. He got down on one knee and popped the question. Everyone at work knew, I have no idea how they were able to keep the secret. I was stunned but thankfully had enough wits to say yes! He had apparently asked my parents permission to wed weeks before!
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: Looking out in the ballroom after we were announced and realizing everyone I had ever loved our cared about for the past 34 years was in one room, to share in our joy!
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: The beach ceremony and seeing my wife for the FIRST time in her wedding dress.
Where did you go on your honeymoon? Joe wanted to explore his roots and I wanted to go somewhere that was off the beaten path. We decided to start out in the picturesque Amalfi coast where Joe’s parents were born. It was his first time and very emotional for him. We met cousins of his that he’d never met! It was so special. Then we did the 20-hour trek to Mauritius! What an unbelievable island and worth the shelp! We did everything from water sports to private meals on the ocean to ziplining to walking with lions! Next it was off to Cape Town. We enjoyed trips to lovely vineyards and before we knew, it was time to head home!
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? It became very overwhelming at times trying to manage all the planning for such a large, detailed event. Best advice I ever got was from a friend who told me to make a simple list of everything that had to be done (my list had 59 items) and tackle 1 maybe 2 tasks per week! Also, do your research on your honeymoon planning. We did not know it was a national holiday in France when we booked our Mauritius honeymoon and the place was filled to the brim with children and young families!
Tara & Joe
October 20, 2012
Westhampton Bath & Tennis Club • Westhampton Beach, NY
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony & Reception Location: Westhampton Bath & Tennis Club / Officiant: Rabbi Mallamy / Caterer: Robbins Wolfe Eventeurs / Wedding Coordinator: Unforgettable Hamptons Events / Photographer: Shira Weinberger / Videographer: Exo Photography & Cinema / Entertainment: Hank Lane Music & Productions / Florist: House of Flowers / Limousine Service: Capricorn Limousines / Cake Designer: Martine’s Fine Bake Shoppe / Bridal Salon & Veil: Wedding Atelier / Shoes: Gianfranco Ferre / Formal Attire: Joseph Abboud / Invitations: Passion Paper / Favors: Pashmina’s & Sandals / Hair Salon: DM Luxury / Makeup Artist: Denny / Jeweler: Cartier / Photo Booth: Photobooths by NY Digital Memories / Dove Release: Lasting Memories by Sharon / Honeymoon Locations: Amalfi Coast- Italy & Africa
We’re so excited to be sharing part 2 of Tanya and James’ romantic wedding at Nanina’s In The Park. When we asked them to describe their special day, the couple said it was “perfect and the day went off without a hitch.” Not only was the weather perfect, their vendors all worked well together to make their wedding better than the couple ever imagined. Tanya and James’ wedding reception looked like so much fun, their photos make us want to get up and dance! Thank you to Daniel J Photography who caught all the fun in a photojournalistic style.
Choosing a reception location was an easy decision for Tanya and James. Upon visiting Nanina’s In The Park for the first time, the couple was impressed by the pristine grounds, stellar ballroom, reputable service, and the delectable cuisine, which was an important factor for the bride’s large Italian family. “After meeting with Tom Casella, we knew all of our wishes and dreams would be taken care of,” noted the bride. The staff went above and beyond the couple’s expectations. “They promised we wouldn’t have to worry about a thing, and they were absolutely correct,” James mentioned.
The couple admitted they are not very good dancers, but through their dance lessons with Arthur Murray Dance Studio in Greenbrook, they were able to learn a basic routine right before their big day. “We didn’t look like professions but we knew the steps that worked with our song, and we had a great time performing it!” exclaimed Tanya. “It was a great experience and the lessons proved to be a nice break [from wedding planning], ” added James.
Following their first dance to “Lucky” by Jason Mraz and Colbie Caillat, Groove Place got the party started with live entertainment. Their band played music for all generations, including classic rock to today’s hits.
Working with Le Petit Gateau was so much fun! The cake tasting was delicious and because my grandmother wasn’t able to attend, they actually gave us an additional tasting to bring home to her. Our wedding cake was four tiers, consisting of red velvet with cream cheese, vanilla cake with chocolate ganache and strawberries, and vanilla cake with cannoli filling.
Tanya tossed her bouquet to “Single Ladies” by Beyonce.
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: My favorite memory of the day was standing up at the altar and professing my vows to James.
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: I really enjoyed our first dance together but my favorite memory of the day had to be seeing Tanya walk in to the church for the first time.
Where did you go on your honeymoon? We decided on Hawaii because we wanted to go to an island that was different from all the Caribbean. We went to Maui first and stayed at The Fairmont Kea Lani and then Oahu for one night at The Royal Hawaiian. To break up the trip home we stayed at The Carneros Inn in Napa California, which was the most luxurious place I have ever stayed at! In Hawaii we did a lot of excursions and activities and in Napa is when we really just relaxed as though we didn’t have a worry in the world.
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? Don’t get too caught up in all the details of planning a wedding. Be sure to not lose site of the overall picture and remember that it will be one of the most amazing days of your entire life regardless of what color table clothes you choose.
Tanya & James
August 24, 2013
Nanina’s In The Park • Belleville, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: St. Teresa of Avila Parish / Celebrant: Monsignor Raymond J. Kupke / Reception Location: Nanina’s In The Park / Photographer: Daniel J Photography / Videographer: Joe Minnella Cinematography / Entertainment: Groove Place / Florist: Floral Designs by Cindy / Limousine Service: Asher’s Limo / Cake Designer: Le Petit Gateau / Bridal Salon: Kleinfeld / Veil: I Do, I Do / Shoes: Kate Spade / Formal Attire: Cozy Formalwear / Invitations: Invitations by Danielle / Favors: Nanina’s In The Park / Hair Stylist & Makeup Artist: My Cinderella’s Dream / Jeweler: George Press Jewelers / Dance Lessons: Arthur Murray Dance Studio, Greenbrook / Photo Booth: Elite Sound Entertainment / Honeymoon Locations: Hawaii and Napa, CA
Happy Wedding Wednesday! Today we have spring on our minds and we can’t help but to think of warm weather after browsing through these photographs from Kelly and Ben’s vibrant summer wedding submitted to us by RSVP to Me. We just love how Kelly and Ben chose to tie the knot close to July 4th, which gave their families the opportunity to have an extended vacation/reunion following their nuptials. Since their family was traveling from all over the U.S. and even outside the country, the couple was able to enjoy time with their loved ones once the reception ended. After all, weddings are about love and the uniting of two families joining together.
Kelly’s Pour La Victoire wedding shoes were not only a comfortable choice for the ceremony, but the blue soles represented her “something blue”!
For a nontraditional engagement ring, Ben worked with the jeweler to design a ring that married Kelly’s favorite color of green and her fiance’s birthstone of amethyst. A custom made wedding band with five gemstones coordinates perfectly with her engagement ring.
Kelly from RSVP is friendly, professional and very easy to work with. Ben and I knew we wanted custom invitations that reflected us and the experience with Kelly is just that! There are no books to choose from- you literally pick out every details from paper samples, to fonts and graphics. We were even able to word our invitations exactly the way we wanted. We had Kelly design our invitations, programs, favor cards and escort cards. They were beautiful!
With the help of Jenn and Laura of Pretty Little Details, the couple was able to enjoy their wedding day from beginning to end. “I can’t say enough wonderful things about Pretty Little Details! They anticipated every need Ben, myself, our wedding party and my mom had on the day of our wedding. They were organized, made sure we ate lunch, set everything up and took the time to really understand our vision and make suggestions. I never felt any stress on our wedding day because I trusted Jenn and Laura. I even had an issue where a pleat of my dress had been steamed incorrectly. Laura discreetly sewed the seam while I was wearing my dress so everything would be perfect.”
The bride and groom wore custom Converse sneakers for their reception. Kelly’s were turquoise with orange accents, while Ben opted for grey, white and black plaid.
Kelly’s maid of honor wore a turquoise, floor-length gown in her style choice.
“Our ceremony was held at the Olde Mill Inn. It was over 100 degrees that day and very humid! Ben and I both love The Beatles and Rev. Phil incorporated their music into our ceremony with Here Come the Sun, Blackbird and I Wanna Hold Your Hand. We also had a sand ceremony.”
Simple bunches of hydrangea tied with orange ribbon lined the ceremony aisle, while large floral arrangements were displayed at the altar.
Designed by Jardiniere Fine Flowers, the bride’s bouquet was made up of mango roses, hot pink peonies, and lime green hydrangea.
David and Amy Lau caught the special moments in a photojournalistic style. “I absolutely hate getting my picture taken, but David and Amy made me feel relaxed and comfortable. They really captured natural moments throughout the ceremony and reception.”
Guests found their seats with custom escort cards designed by Kelly of RSVP to me. Rather than traditional table numbers, Kelly and Benjamin opted to name each table after their favorite songs by The Beatles.
After spending Valentine’s Day at the Olde Mill Inn several years prior, Kelly and Ben were impressed by the facility. They liked the warm and welcoming feel of the Olde Mill Inn, as well as the maintained courtyard, and large ballroom. Additionally, the couple liked how the facility hosts only one wedding at a time and offers Eco-friendly over-night accommodations. Set on sage green linens were alternating pillar candles along with three brightly colored floral arrangements at the base.
Guests had a variety of options to choose from during cocktail hour, including assorted cheeses, crudités, chaffing dishes of calamari, and twelve passed hors d’oeuvres. Rather than a traditional sit down dinner, the couple opted for a buffet-style dinner, which allowed guests to eat in a more casual setting. “We were able to customize our menu with the Olde Mill Inn to pick and choose what we wanted from several different menus. We had everything from pastas to carving stations to hibachi to All-American.” Throughout the evening, the couple’s signature drink of white sangria was also available.
A venetian table and chocolate fountain with fruits and mashmallows were served for dessert, in addition to the wedding cake designed by Palermo’s Bakery.
Tell us about your wedding proposal: Ben proposed on Christmas morning before my family came over. In typical Kelly fashion, I said, “Is this really happening?” Ben just started to laugh. We had talked about marriage in the past, but I never felt liked we had to be married to have a life-long committed relationship. I would say my views on marriage changed after my mom had surgery and Ben and I moved in with her for a short period to help until she was well enough to be on her own. Ben was so patient, took her to doctor appointments and made sure she took her medication. I felt that was the turning point that took our relationship from high school/college love to adult love.
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: There is no specific memory that stands out greater then the next. Marrying my best friend made the day perfect.
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: Walking into the reception room with Kelly was my favorite memory of the night.
Where did you go on your honeymoon? Ben and I chose to spend time with our families that had traveled from all over. We plan to go to London this year.
What are you currently looking forward to as a couple? Even more laughter and fun! Ben and I love to attend concerts, go on impromptu adventures, travel to breweries/wineries and go to Yankee games. I just want to make more great memories.
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? Make decisions that make you and your partner happy and not everyone else. Also remember that it is about your love for each other and sharing that with you family and friends. Pick vendors that understand your vision and meet your standards. I expected my vendors to respond quickly to questions, address concerns, listen to us and give us their expert advice. I received this and much more from each of them.
Kelly & Benjamin
June 30, 2012
Olde Mill Inn • Basking Ridge, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony & Reception Location: Olde Mill Inn
officiant: Reverend Phil Passantino
Wedding Coordinator: Pretty Little Details
Photographer: David and Amy Lau Photography
Entertainment: Paul Anthony Entertainment
Florist: Jardiniere Fine Flowers
Cake Designer: Palermo’s Bakery
Bridal Salon: Bella Sposa Bridal Boutique
Headpiece: Etsy.com • Shoes: Pour La Victoire
Formal Attire: Men’s Wearhouse
Invitations: RSVP to Me
Favors: Donation to The Valerie Fund
Hair Stylist & Makeup Artist: Pin It Up Bridal
Jeweler: Henry’s Fine Jewelry & Dicken’s Lane
Candy Buffet: Lisa Blackler
Happy Valentine’s Day! We’re so excited to share Maggie and Artur’s enchanted garden wedding submitted by Juliet Events. Not only does this wedding feature some breathtaking details, but the love these two share is exquisitely portrayed through the photos captured by Matthew Sowa Photography. Maggie and Artur met in 2004 while on a Lake George camping trip with a group of friends. The two hit it off and following the trip they exchanged phone numbers and went on their first date. Maggie and Artur were so head over heals for each other that Artur even told Maggie that she will be his wife. (Now that’s certainly love at first sight!) Blissfully agreeing, the couple dated for six years before Artur proposed with a custom-made two-carat cushion-cut engagement ring, which to this day, Maggie can’t stop admiring. The details of this wedding are so infectious you’ll want to tie the knot all over again.
“We had an elaborate three day wedding planned, with the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner on Friday, the wedding on Saturday and a tented “after party” for 130 guests on Sunday. We thought that a long weekend would work best for this and that people could still have Monday to recuperate after the weekend. We chose September because it is one of the most beautiful months of the year, has a small amount of rain and the weather is usually fair by then.”
Maggie’s Gucci wedding shoes is what began the overall inspiration for her wedding day. Navy blue and gold were the main colors of the wedding with accent shades of pink and blush.
The bridesmaids wore various style dresses in French blue luminescent chiffon, designed by Jim Hjelm Occasions. “I had eleven bridesmaids and quickly learned it was impossible to find just one dress to fit them well. I wanted them all to look beautiful individually. As a thank you gift, I got the girls personalized 18k gold jewelry to wear on the day of the wedding and to keep as a memento. They all received a monogram necklace and a monogram bracelet from Marinette Jewelry and a pair of gold Swarovski crystal earrings with a golden shadow stone color.”
Artur sported a black Brooks Brothers fitted suit with white shirt, and dark gray tie with diagonal black stripes. He wore custom black and white converse sneakers with the word groom embroidered on the back, as well as custom sterling silver Iron Man cufflinks from MAVA Style Jewelry. ”They were my gift to him on the wedding day and a total surprise. He loves Iron Man and he is the super hero in my life, so they were a perfect fit.”
To ensure their wedding vision would be implemented exactly how they wanted, the couple called upon Angela and Alida of Juliet Events to help with the planning. ” From the moment we met with them, they were always very professional, punctual, understanding, patient and so creative. They always listened to everything we said and always kept our wishes as a priority. The email reminders definitely helped keep me organized and on top of things. They introduced us to excellent vendors who were kept within our budget and our visions. We really had nothing to worry about at all during our planning since we knew we could count on them to help us through it all. It was a wonderful experience.”
After working with Matthew Sowa Photography in the past for a friend’s wedding, Maggie and Artur knew they wanted Mattew to capture their wedding day. “His photos really speak for themselves. Most importantly, to me, he made me feel really comfortable in front of the camera. I usually hate getting my photos taken and with him all my inhibitions went away and I was able to really show my true feelings,” commented the groom. The couple was equally pleased working with Sunnyville Films who caught the special and most exciting moments in a high action, well edited film.
The place card table was designed with various crystal candleholders, gold julep cups with coordinating floral arrangements, and a dramatic display of rose petals. Each escort card was attached by a navy ribbon to a Victorian key, with a framed sign that read, “Please find the key to our hearts.”
“We visited a lot of venues before finding the Skylands Manor. As faith would have it, we found this one totally by accident. One Sunday, we went hiking with a few friends and we left quite late. The original place we wanted to go hiking was at full capacity when we got there and we decided to google another place near us. We ended up in Ringwood. As soon as we walked past the beautiful gardens and saw the Manor, I wondered if they hosted weddings there. We thought it was breathtaking. As soon as I got home that night I researched the Skylands Manor and emailed them to make an appointment. We got an appointment on Thursday and booked on the spot. It was destiny.”
Tablescape designs consisted of two various styles of oval and round tables. On each oval table were three centerpieces of roses, dahlias, hydrangea, queen Anne’s lace, accents of dusty miller, and other seasonal coordinating blooms for fullness and texture. Cascading crystals, gold cylinder vases with floating candles, votive candles, and rose petals completed the tablescape for a romantic ambiance. Each place setting had a menu card enclosed within a navy taffeta napkin, which was placed on top of a gold charger plate.
Since the couple opted for a weekend affair, guests were given edible breakfast parcel favors that they could enjoy the next morning. “Each navy gable box had a label on it that was designed by me to match the rest of the graphics of the wedding and said “breakfast was on us”. Inside were 6 mini cocktail rolls, each a different flavor, from the renowned Hudson Bread Bakery. They were preordered and ready for us the day before, so they were very fresh. Also included, were 2 mini jars of French Bonne Maman jellies and jams, in an assortment of flavors. The favors were a hit!”
Tell us about your wedding proposal: We were together for eight years before we got married, six at the point of the engagement. Truthfully, I knew I was going to marry him from the beginning and the engagement wasn’t too much of a shock. We talked about wanting to finish school and getting all our ducks in a row and then we would move forward with our engagement and wedding. I loved the way he proposed; it was exactly how I pictured it in my head. I happened to be helping his sister with her resume and as a thank you she really wanted to take me out for a drink. She took me to a local lounge, which also happened to be the place where Artur and I had our first date. As soon as we got our drinks, she went to the bathroom and I sat there waiting. From the corner of my eye I saw someone approach me, and all of the sudden, I realized it was him, dressed up really nice and holding a box. He knelt down and asked me if I would marry him (while his sister took pictures), it was really romantic. I said YES of course! We spent the rest of the night at the lounge, having dinner and drinks.
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: When the bridal party did a choreographed dance to the YMCA song, they really go the party started.
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: Seeing my bride for the first time as she walked down the aisle, I couldn’t stop smiling.
Where did you go on your honeymoon? We went to France (the love capital of the world) for our honeymoon.
What are you currently looking forward to as a couple? I am pregnant with our first child and we recently received the confirmation that it is a boy! I am 19 weeks pregnant as of January 1st, 2013. We got pregnant in Paris! We are very excited!
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? Make sure to look past anything anybody tells you you “should” do and do whatever YOUR dreams desire. You and your husband are the only two people whose opinion should matter when choosing what you want your wedding to look like. There are no rules.
Maggie & Artur
September 1, 2012
Skylands Manor • Ringwood, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: St. Joseph Catholic Church
Celebrant: Father Stanley Lesniowski
Reception Location: Skylands Manor
Wedding Coordinator: Juliet Events
Photographer & Photo Booth: Matthew Sowa Photography
Videographer: Sunnyville Films
Entertainment: Esteem Entertainment
Florist: A Touch of Elegance
Limousine Service: Diamond Limo
Cake Designer: Skylands Manor
Bridal Salon: Weddings by Wade
Veil: Michael Wade Bridal • Shoes: Gucci
Formal Attire: Brooks Brothers
Invitations: DIY by Bride
Favors: DIY Gable Boxes
Hair Stylist & Makeup Artist: Melissa D’Aloia & Co.
Jeweler: Golden Classics NYC
Cigars: La Rosa Cubana Cigars
Lighting: JB Lighting Design
Honeymoon Location: France
Jennifer and Greg met during a sales training class in New York City, and although they were attracted to each other they remained friends before dating. “I found Jen attractive, but thought she was all business and slightly intimidating,” Greg shared. They spent more time together and shared many memories down the Jersey shore, making Long Branch, New Jersey the perfect proposal location. Jennifer and Greg enjoyed dinner at Sirena (one of their favorite restaurants overlooking the ocean), followed by a romantic walk on the beach where Greg got down on one knee and proposed.
The ceremony took place at St. Teresa of Avila Church where Jennifer walked down the aisle wearing a beautiful Jim Hjelm gown embellished with a white vintage sash. The groom sported a black tuxedo with white shirt and vest, while the groomsmen coordinated with the bridesmaids short black dresses from J. Crew Bridal.
Throughout the ceremony and reception, Dean Michaels Studio captured the special moments in photography and on video. When Jennifer and Greg first met with Dean, they were impressed by his artistic style, as well as the prints and albums. “Dean made some great suggestions on photos before and after the wedding,” noted the groom.
After attending a wedding at the Stone House at Stirling Ridge, Jennifer and Greg knew this was the perfect locale to host their wedding celebration. Not only did the couple love the overall modern decor with open ballrooms and beautiful large windows, but they also enjoyed working with the staff. “They were great to work with and following a tasting, we were blown away,” noted Greg. Cocktail hour began with a variety of passed hors d’oeuvres, a Mediterranean and pasta station, and a taste of Tuscany antipasto table. For dinner, guests had a choice of Porcini crusted Chilean sea bass or a grilled filet mignon. “The food was delicious and guests raved about the choices,” Jennifer noted.
In between dancing and socializing, guests were treated to a three-tiered wedding cake with cannoli filling, in addition to chocolate-covered strawberries.
The ballroom was decorated beautifully with high and low centerpieces of ranunculus, roses, orchids, and hydrangeas in various shades of pink, orange, and green. Phase One of Craig Scott Entertainment had guests dancing the entire night. The band played a variety of songs from 80s to today’s top hits including Lady Gaga. For their first dance as newlyweds, Jennifer and Greg danced to “Everything” by Michael Buble.
Following the reception, the newlyweds escaped to Hawaii for their honeymoon in paradise. Jennifer and Greg are currently enjoying time together and look forward to making new traditions and purchasing their first home. When asked if they have any advice for couples getting married, Jennifer said, “Enjoy every second. It goes by quickly so have fun with the planning.” Greg added, “Don’t get too consumed with stress and enjoy this time in your life.”
Jennifer & Gregory
June 29, 2012
Stone House at Stirling Ridge • Warren, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: St. Teresa of Avila Church
Celebrant: Father Peter
Reception Location: Stone House at Stirling Ridge
Photographer & Videographer: Dean Michaels Studio
Entertainment: Phase One of Craig Scott Entertainment
Florist: Schweinfurth Flowers
Limousine Service: Bergen Limo
Cake Designer: Rudys Pastry Shop
Bridal Salon: Something Special • Shoes: Badgley Mischka
Formal Attire: Calvin Klein
Invitations: Greetings From Hoboken
Hair Salon & Makeup Studio: Davida Hair
Jeweler: Very Best Diamond
Honeymoon Location: Hawaii
“I knew Jennifer was out of my league from day one, but when she wanted to go out, I took it, ran, and still haven’t looked back,” reminisced Kenneth. Since their initial meeting, high school sweethearts Jennifer and Kenneth dated, and after succeeding their first year of college in a long-distance relationship, they knew they would one day wed. Six years from the day the two declared their love for each other, Kenneth took Jennifer to Lavallette and under the quaint gazebo he proposed. “After spending a few hours at the beach, we returned home and our families were waiting for us with a surprise party that Kenneth had planned. It was so nice that we had our alone time, but could also share in the excitement with both families,” shared Jennifer.
Watching Jennifer walk down the aisle of Holy Family Chapel was Kenneth’s favorite memory of the day. He commented, “It was such a special moment.” Jennifer wore a Paloma Blanca gown with sweetheart strapless neckline, A-line silhouette, and Swarovski crystal embellishments. A cathedral-length blusher veil and raspberry-colored shoes completed her look. Kenneth sported a traditional black tuxedo with black vest and white tie, while his groomsmen coordinated nicely with the bridesmaids’ sage green dresses.
When the couple began planning their June 24, 2011 wedding, they knew they wanted to have a June celebration at a facility that hosted one event at a time. Upon visiting Brooklake Country Club for the first time, Jennifer and Kenneth were impressed by the accommodating staff, beautiful grounds, and the facility’s ability to accommodate cocktail hour either indoors, outdoors, or both. “The staff exceeded our expectations. They paid attention to every detail and went out of their way to make sure every one of our guests’ needs were met,” Jennifer and Kenneth agreed. Guests enjoyed a lavish cocktail hour, including a seafood raw bar, carving station, and pasta station in addition to various hors d’oeuvres, a martini bar, and two signature drinks called “As Good as It Gets” and “Head Over Heels.” A choice of Chilean sea bass, filet mignon, or French-cut chicken breast was served for dinner.
In between dancing and socializing, guests were treated to wedding cake and an assorted combination plate of three miniature desserts, including New York style cheesecake, molten chocolate torte, tiramisu, apple cobbler à la mode, and chocolate-covered strawberries. An international coffee bar and after-dinner cordials were also available.
Following the couple’s first dance to “Amazed” by Lonestar, D’Amico Entertainment got the party started. Their emcee for the evening, Chris, provided Jennifer and Kenneth advice and helped them choose the right balance of music for their crowd. “D’Amico Entertainment was beyond our expectations, and we liked the DJ and band combination,” noted Jennifer.
Abacus Wedding Studios captured the wedding day flawlessly in photography and on video. Rennie caught Jennifer and Kenneth’s personalities through a photojournalistic style as well as traditional posed shots. The couple was equally pleased working with Robert, who blended in with their guests. Jennifer and Kenneth commented, “Robert took great footage for the transitional frames in our video and has a creative eye.”
In lieu of traditional wedding favors, donations were made to the Lustgarten Foundation in memory of loved family members. A small card was included at each guest’s table setting informing them of this donation. At the end of the celebration, Jennifer and Kenneth escaped on their honeymoon to Florida and set sail for seven days on the Carnival Legend cruise line.
Jennifer & Kenneth
June 24, 2011
Brooklake Country Club • Florham Park, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: Saint Elizabeth’s Chapel
Celebrant: Father Sean McDonnell
Reception Location: Brooklake Country Club
Photographer & Videographer: Abacus Wedding Studios
Entertainment: D’Amico Entertainment
Florist: Flowers by Candlelight
Limousine Service: My Limousine Service
Cake Designer: Le Promenade
Bridal Salon: The Wedding Shop
Formal Attire: Cozy Formalwear
Invitations: Made by Couple
Favors: Donations to the Lustgarten Foundation
Makeup Artist: My Makeup Artist Victoria
Jewelers: Helzberg Diamonds
Honeymoon Location: Orlando, Florida and Carnival Cruise Line
When Heather met Rick on her first day of work in 2009, she was impressed by his welcoming personality as well as his crystal blue eyes. “Rick greeted me at the door since I didn’t have a security badge to let myself into the building. During my first few days of employment, he went out of his way to befriend me,” Heather shared.
The two began dating and about a year later, Heather was given the surprise of her life. Following a trip to visit relatives in Pennsylvania, Rick suggested they stop at Watchung Reservation (one of their favorite parks). After reaching Lake Surprise on May 29, Rick got down on one knee and proposed with a classic princess-cut engagement ring.
Guests were given a preview of Heather and Rick’s October 1, 2011 celebration with gold-edged ivory invitations. “I wanted guests to feel the elegance of the event they were going to be attending,” noted Heather. After months of planning, the wedding day finally arrived. Heather walked down the aisle at Saint Teresa of Avila wearing a mermaid-style Casablanca gown embellished in intricate detailing of embroidery, lace, and beading. A hair comb along with a cathedral-length blusher veil and peep-toe Benjamin Adams shoes completed her look. Rick sported a classic black tuxedo with an off-white shirt, black vest, and bow tie.
Dan and Ellie of Bird & Branch Photography captured the day’s events in a photojournalistic approach. Rick noted, “Our photographers managed to get pictures of even the most trivial moments that we now look back on and are thrilled that we have them.” Heather and Rick are not only very pleased with their photographs, but enjoyed working with Bird & Branch Photography, claiming Dan and Ellie were two of the most amazing people they worked with.
Chosen for its timeless décor and large ballroom with dance floor, the reception was held at The Berkeley Plaza. Heather and Rick were also impressed with the accommodating staff. “The team at The Berkeley Plaza was fabulous. They came up with solutions that incorporated everything we wanted and tailored their services to fit our needs,” noted Rick. Guests enjoyed a variety of selections during cocktail hour, including specialty stations serving pierogis, fajitas, and stir fry, as well as passed hors d’oeuvres. For dinner guests had a choice of chicken francaise, Chateaubriand, or sole oreganata served with duchess potatoes and fresh vegetables. Italian cookies and pastries were served for dessert, in addition to their red velvet wedding cake.
Guests danced the night away from the moment they entered the reception with the help of Fantasy Productions DJ Entertainment. Jim Bello, their emcee for the evening, not only listened to Heather and Rick’s requests, but used his knowledge and played the best mix of songs by reading the crowd. Heather and Rick held the spotlight to “Never Let Go” by Hansen and also participated in the traditional parent dances. “When our guests chanted they wanted to hear one more song at the end of the night, we knew our wedding was a success,” shared the bride.
Heather secretly wished for a light dusting of snow as guests left The Berkeley Plaza. Although snowflakes didn’t fall from the sky, Heather’s maid of honor surprised the newlyweds by sprinkling glittering faux snowflakes over their hotel bed. “I’ll never forget that small gesture that truly touched my heart. It was one of my favorite memories from our wedding day,” commented Heather. Following their special day, the newlyweds escaped to Excellence Playa Mujeres for their honeymoon.
Heather & Rick
October 1, 2011
The Berkeley Plaza • Berkeley Heights, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: Saint Teresa of Avila Parish
Celebrant: Father Peter Koziolkiewicz
Reception Location: The Berkeley Plaza
Photographer: Bird & Branch Photography
Entertainment: Fantasy Productions DJ Entertainment
Florist: Botanical Blooms LLC
Limousine Service: D&G Limousine
Cake Designer: Bovella’s Pastry Shoppe
Bridal Salon & Veil: I Do, I Do
Headpiece: Model Bride • Shoes: Benjamin Adams
Formal Attire: Sarno & Son Tuxedos
Invitations: The Papery • Favors: Howe House
Hair Stylist: Tami Bischoff • Makeup Artist: Model Bride
Jewelers: Zales and Helzberg Diamonds
Honeymoon Location: Excellence Playa Mujeres― Cancun, Mexico
Jamie and Melvin met in August of 2005 through a mutual friend. After enjoying a night out in Atlantic City, New Jersey, the two became friends and began dating six months later. “I believe our strong bond that began as friendship is what really made me fall for Melvin. We always have the greatest time together, and his sense of humor totally got me,” Jamie reminisced. Five years later Jamie and Melvin decided to spend the day together on May 7, 2010. After walking the Point Pleasant boardwalk, they stopped at Fletcher Lake in Bradley Beach. As the two were enjoying their picnic dinner, Melvin got down on one knee and proposed. “I was shocked and had no idea he had a ring,” Jamie shared. The wedding date was set for August 26, 2011.
The wedding day began early for the bride and her bridesmaids when they woke up to a delicious breakfast put together by Jamie’s parents. The girls were pampered to perfection with the help of Annamarie Martone and MAC makeup artist Evelyn Morales. Jamie’s hair was styled half up with beautiful curls, while her makeup was applied in a smoky-eye technique and neutral lip color. The groom enjoyed his morning with a run followed by a relaxing afternoon before getting ready.
Choosing the ceremony location was an easy decision for Jamie and Melvin, as they wanted to have a traditional church wedding service. The bride walked down the aisle at Saint Dominic’s Catholic Church donning an ivory Casablanca gown with dropped waist and A-line skirt with slight pickups. It was beautifully embellished with embroidery and beadwork, as well as an accented belt. Melvin waited for his bride at the altar sporting a black, two-button tuxedo with ivory shirt and vest.
While the newlyweds and bridal party took their formal photographs with the help of Jason of Jason Rhee Photography, guests headed to the Sterling Ballroom at the Doubletree Hotel of Tinton Falls for the reception. Upon visiting the facility for the first time, Jamie and Melvin were greeted by a warm and welcoming staff. They were immediately impressed with the setup of the ballroom, including a large dance floor and crystal chandeliers. Having accommodations available at the same location also factored into Jamie and Melvin’s decision.
Cocktail hour began with 15 passed hors d’oeuvres, six chafing dishes, a sushi display, raw bar, and various attended stations. Guests had a choice of chicken, filet mignon, or fish accompanied with steamed broccoli and garlic mashed potatoes for their main entrée. “The food was absolutely incredible. There was so much of it, and our guests were definitely shocked at the amount and quality of the food,” Jamie raved. In addition to a three-tiered wedding cake, guests indulged in a Viennese display featuring assorted pastries, cakes, and chocolate fountain.
Jamie surprised Melvin with a custom groom’s cake showcasing his favorite basketball team, last name and the number 26 for their wedding day.
Dave Nase from NJ’s Best DJ’s had guests dancing to a variety of music from current dance hits to old classics. “Our DJ listened to what we wanted and added suggestions of his own that really worked well,” noted Jamie. Walking into their reception for the first time as husband and wife was Melvin’s favorite memory of the day. “Along with our bridal party, we were introduced with a basketball lineup theme that really surprised our guests,” noted the groom.
From the preparations throughout the ceremony and reception, Jason Rhee Photography captured the special moments in a photojournalistic approach. The couple agreed that Jason not only offered a variety of packages, but worked well with taking photographs of their guests in a nonintrusive way. Jamie and Melvin were equally pleased working with Jack Hensley Productions, who captured their wedding day on film. Rather than traditional favors, Jamie and Melvin opted for a candy buffet. Guests were able to choose various sweet treats to enjoy for their ride home. Following their big day, the newlyweds traveled to California for ten days.
Jamie & Melvin
August 26, 2011
DoubleTree by Hilton • Tinton Falls, NJ
In The Spotlight:
Ceremony Location: Saint Dominic’s Catholic Church
Celebrant: Deacon Ed Buecker
Reception Location: DoubleTree by Hilton
Photographer: Jason Rhee Photography
Videographer: Jack Hensley Productions
Entertainment: NJ’s Best DJ’s
Florist: Betty Smith
Limousine Service: First Class Limousine
Cake Designer: Chocolate Carousel
Bridal Salon: True Love Bridal
Veil: David’s Bridal • Shoes: Enzo Angiolini
Formal Attire: ChazMaTazz Formalwear
Invitations: MagnetStreet • Favors: Candy Bar
Hair Stylist: Annamarie Martone • Makeup Artist: Evelyn Morales
Earth Treasures Fine Jewelers, Blaine’s Jewelry Box, & Kohl’s Wedding Collection
Honeymoon Location: California Coastal Trip