Category Archives: New York

Wedding: Laura & Louise

Over the years, we’ve featured plenty of Central Park weddings and engagement shoots, so we were thrilled when Claire got in touch with us to share Laura and Louise’s story. After her planning her own Central Park wedding, Claire started a whole business devoted to helping couples who want to tie the knot in the park. Here, she fills us in on English couple Laura and Louise’s big day.

From Claire, Laura & Louise’s wedding planner: Laura and Louise are from Sheffield in the North of England.  They met around fourteen years ago.  They were in the same hockey club and knew each other only a little at first, then they ended up playing on the same team and they got to know each other better.  This friendship became a romance, although love is often never as smooth as it should be: they spent some time apart as their lives took different courses for a while, but there was never a day when they would not be in touch in some way.

They got engaged in the middle of a fireworks display.  Louise asked Laura, with the aid of a ring Louise and Laura’s brother had made for the occasion.  Then they went together to get a proper one made specially.  They knew that they did not want a conventional wedding, so they looked in to several options of unique and unusual places to get married in England, such as a woodland center and an old factory.  Then they started to consider going abroad, and Laura casually suggested getting married in Central Park after she had remembered seeing it in a film.  After thinking it through more seriously, and comparing prices of venues at home to the cost of a destination wedding with built-in vacation, it seemed like no contest!  They contacted me, and we started to discuss their options.

We always get an event permit from the Central Park Conservancy for a wedding to ensure that there are no other wedding parties at the time and place where we want to hold a ceremony.  They chose the Ladies’ Pavilion, a lovely spot by the Lake on the West side of Central Park. The closest entrance to the Ladies’ Pavilion is the one right by John Lennon’s old home, the Dakota, at Central Park West and 72nd Street.

It is a very popular wedding location. There are seats inside and it has charming art deco cast-iron details.  It really matched their 1920s style outfits.  The Ladies’ Pavilion was originally built in the 1870s and used as a shelter for trolley passengers and was at Central Park’s 8th Avenue and 59th Street entrance, but it has been relocated to its current location. During the Winter the Ladies would change into their ice skates here, before skating on the lake, hence the name.  Laura and Louise had a lovely an iconic backdrop to the wedding, with the lake and the Manhattan skyline in the background.

There were seven guests in attendance at the wedding.  They had Laura’s Mum, Dad, brother and cousin, maid of honour and her boyfriend, and one friend from university who happened to be in America at the time.  We wrote a ceremony especially for the couple, and they wrote their own personal vows to read out to each other during the ceremony.  Laura’s brother, Adam, was their photographer.  After the ceremony they all travelled in the pedicabs to Bow Bridge and then on to Bethesda Terrace and Fountain, and had more pictures taken there.  

Laura wore a Joy by Jenny Packham dress with Irregular Choice shoes.  Laura’s saw the dress on an episode of Don’t Tell the Bride.  She contacted the shop in the show, and found out the name and designer of the dress and stockists in her home town. She never even looked at or tried on another dress!  Louise wore a Vivienne Westwood shirt and tailored trousers. There were no flowers, although the boys in the group all wore waistcoats with some fab boutonnieres made from buttons.  Laura did her own makeup and hair after tutorials back home in England, Louise’s hair was styled by Laura, and their make-up was done by one of their guests.

The wedding ceremony took place at 1pm so the morning was spent enjoying a hearty breakfast and then getting ready.  After the ceremony, the party spent some time in Central Park taking photos, stopping off for a quick hot dog and snow cone from a vendor.  They then walked back through Central Park to their nearby hotel.  They were congratulated as they walked.  In the evening they all went for a celebratory meal to Sarabeth’s on Central Park South, which they tell me was amazing food with great service.  They had been notified that it was a wedding breakfast and they made a huge effort to make it special.  They finished off the day by changing into their pajamas and drinking champagne on the rooftop terrace of their hotel. The next morning Laura and Louise enjoyed a helicopter tour of the city, which had paid for by some of their family as a wedding gift.

Laura told me that one of the most amazing things about the day was how amazing the people were who happened to stumble upon their ceremony, and then afterwards as they took a stroll back through Central Park to their hotel.  They said that people were very friendly and complimentary, with so many people saying “Congratulations”, making nice comments on their outfits, and people stopping to talk to them about the ceremony and their plans for the rest of the day. They said that it made them feel really special.

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Engagement: Kayla & Lauren

From Kayla: Lauren and I met in college. We were engaged in October of 2015 when Lauren took me to an art museum and we stumbled upon a serenity garden downtown. After a few minutes of talking Lauren got down on one knee and proposed. I answered with “only if you say yes to me” and pulled out her grandmother’s ring. I had been carrying it around for two weeks waiting for her to ask. She was totally surprised. When we first found A Bicycle Built for Two it provided so much positivity and light for us. Almost five years later, we’re sharing our engagement photos in celebration of our wedding this summer.

Photos courtesy of Karen Huang.

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Event Credits

Location: New York CityPhotography: Karen Huang
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Wedding: Emily & Robin

From Emily & Robin: Our story starts like a cliche, in a bar—our love is anything but…

We both went to a meet-up group mixer one night in November of 2014, and by luck we ended up in a grouping together at the start of the event. We talked during a break, followed each other throughout the rest of the events for the night, and afterwards went to talk more over tea, ending up walking around the streets of the West Village getting to know each other for another couple hours. We both knew right away that this was different, and within a week we had fallen in love. Robin was invited to family Christmas 10 days later, and marriage was talked about in the first two weeks.  We got engaged a year later and started planning our intimate wedding shortly after. We had gone to Aurora Brooklyn (our venue) on our third date and again the night we got engaged. Their garden atrium was the perfect place for our ceremony, and their food is out of this world—and an important requirement for our wedding. We wanted it to be filled with good friends, our wonderful families, great food, and an amazing time.   And it was. We opted to do a lot of the decorations ourselves, i.e. the backdrop, the flowers, and a lot of smaller decorative elements. We also used Etsy and close friends for the bigger parts: our cake-topper, hair and make-up, and our day-of coordinator. All of this helped to reduce the cost of a NYC wedding so that we could spend our money on an amazing wedding photographer and a fantastic venue.  We couldn’t have asked for a better event—it really was everything we wanted and more!

Photos courtesy of Sarah Tew Photography.

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Event Credits

Music: Marie Michele (https://www.gigmasters.com/jazz/mariemichele) // First Dance Song Performed by Doug Winton & Carly Walker of Kyloe Blue (http://www.kyloeblue.com/) // Venue & Catering: Aurora Brooklyn (http://aurorabk.com/) // Make-Up: Erin Acker (http://www.erinmacker.com/) // Invitations: Love and Shelter (https://www.etsy.com/shop/LoveandShelter) // Hair: (Emily) Missy Green (http://www.salonroc.com/) // Day of Coordinator: Lovelys Powell // Cake Topper: MeltingPotLove // Cake: Ladybird Bakery (http://www.ladybirdbakery.com/) and The Chocolate Room (http://thechocolateroombrooklyn.com/)
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Wedding: Lindsay & Christine

From Christine: As our one year wedding anniversary approaches, we realize we should probably getting around to doing two things: 1. finally send out our thank-you cards, and 2. submit photos to your website. 

Lindsay and I were married in Poughkeepsie, NY on October 25th, 2015. With her family hailing from up in Rochester, and mine down in Queens, we selected Poughkeepsie as a good “in-the-middle” compromise (except anyone familiar with NY geography will know that my family definitely got the much closer end of this deal. Thanks, Lindsay).

The wedding itself was an absolute labor of love. Lindsay being a graphic designer and me a production artist, we knew we’d DIY-ing the heck out of our wedding. From the centerpieces to the cake topper to the card box to all of the printed pieces (menu, table numbers, escort cards)—you name it, we designed/produced it. We even had a team of family and friends join me early in the day to do all of the floral arrangements (we owe them, BIG TIME).

We woke up to dark skies and rain on the morning of our wedding, but as luck would have it, right as Lindsay arrived to meet me at our venue for our first look, the rain stopped, the clouds parted, and the sun shone bright. We got to say our I-do’s in an outdoor ceremony area overlooking the majestic Hudson River. Thank you, Mother Nature!

The entire day surpassed all of our expectations and wishes. We have fond memories of floating on air in a bubble of love the whole day. We are excited to celebrate our first wedding anniversary together and look forward to more floating love-bubbles in years to come (I know, I know…very cheesy).

Photos courtesy of Clean Plate Pictures.

Event Credits

Location: Poughkeepsie, NYPhotography: Clean Plate PicturesVenue: Grandview Events
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Wedding: Alyssa & Amanda

From Amanda: Although Alyssa and I live in Brooklyn, we knew we wanted a fall wedding, and we had envisioned a slightly more rustic setting than New York City. We found the perfect hilltop venue just a few hours north of NYC in Hudson, NY. Hudson is a gorgeous town near the Catskills with amazing views, great restaurants, and stellar antique shopping. It’s also (kind of) between Pittsburgh and Boston, our respective hometowns. We arrived a day early to hang lights and decorate our venue with help from a tireless brigade of friends and family. Our guests mostly stayed in B&Bs in downtown Hudson and had a chance to explore the area over the course of the weekend. The only hiccup … the weekend turned unseasonably cold (it actually snowed the day after the wedding). We had to scramble to rent indoor heaters for our barn venue, and forgo most of the outdoor activities we’d planned. If you can’t tell from the photos, we were freezing by the time it was our turn to take couple shots. At one point, the photographer asked us to put our hands on each other’s faces and we refused because our hands were both icy cold. Otherwise, with the help, support, and love of an amazing group of friends and family, the wedding was a beautiful celebration.

Photos courtesy of Zach Honahan.

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Event Credits

Cakes and Dessert: Family and FriendsCatering: Hickory BBQ and SmokehouseLocation: Hudson, NYPhotography: Zach HonahanVenue: The Hill, Hudson
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Wedding: Marissa & Casi

From Kelly, Marissa and Casi’s photographerI hope you enjoy looking through these images; shooting Marissa and Casi’s was a blast. They are such a great, quirky couple and they really brought their personalities into their wedding day. 

From the couple: The energy of the day was palpable. Everything about our wedding was so personal: people we loved most in the world kept coming up to us all night saying they’d never attended a truer, more joyous wedding. Our venue was the New York City Fire Museum, and it was the perfect raw space to be turned into exactly what we wanted. 

Communication with your partner is extremely important in the planning process (and in your marriage, period). No one will remember the teeny things like the napkins and neither will you. That being said,  I would suggest sitting down with your fiancée and discussing what is important to each of you in your vision for the day. For example, I (Marissa) had a lot of opinions on flowers. Casi didn’t. So I was in charge of flowers. She had an opinion on beer. So, she did beer.

Marissa on Casi: I love that Casi is genuine, loyal, hilarious, positive, giving, the best friend anyone could ask for, and a dream of a wife.

Casi on Marissa: I love that Marissa is brilliant, sweet, giving, hysterically funny and pretty much always has the best perspective anyone could want. Plus, she makes amazing red sauce.

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Event Credits

Cakes and Dessert: By The Way BakeryCatering: Hill Country BarbequeFlorist: Jennifer J. BanksLocation: New York, New YorkMusic: Michael EdwardsPhotography: Kelly Prizel PhotographyPlanner or Event Designer: Sarina Law, Hill CountryVenue: New York City Fire Museum
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Wedding: Nichole & Liz

Nichole & Liz may win the award for quickest submission: they got married this past weekend in New York City, and had sent us their photos within two days!

From Nichole: My wife and I had a Periscope wedding at City Hall. We had everything we wanted on a super shoestring budget– just under $800– and here’s how we did it: we decided to nix the big venue, catering, and entertainment, which can cost upward of $10k, and went with a magical union at city hall with just a few close friends and family members as our witnesses. Then we discovered the Periscope app! Just days before the event we invited all our friends and family near and far to join us in the live stream of our ceremony.

We had 4 bridesmaids who all wore something yellow (my favorite color), a lacy white dress I already owned, a white collared shirt, slacks, vest and shoes for Liz, and City Hall as our backdrop. My sister narrated the whole shindig, and 40 guests tuned in and commented and snapped photos the whole way through. Our biggest costs were the rings engraved with “pari passu” totalling $400, Liz’s outfit at $150, and the celebratory dim sum meal and drinks in nearby chinatown with the bridal party at $150, along with the small cost of marriage license and registry. For just under $800 total, it was intimate and fun and filled with so much love. Everyone we wanted to be there was there and we didn’t have to pay by the head– or for a photographer/videographer to capture the day. 

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Event Credits

Location: City Hall, New York CityPhotography: friends & family
Also posted in Attire, DIY, DIY, Lesbian Elopement, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Minimalist, New York City, Pants + Dress, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, suit, Wedding Attire | Tagged , , , , , , , | Leave a comment
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