Category Archives: New York

Engagement: Ali & Sammi

From the couple: Ali and Sammi met (twice) in the fall of 2013, when they were both students at NYU Law School. Their first meeting took place at an event at the Stonewall Inn, hosted by the law school’s LGBT student group, aptly named “OUTLaw”, where, according to Ali, her very obvious romantic advances were rebuffed, and according to (an apparently oblivious) Sammi, a cute girl with a cool haircut was trying to make friends with her. When the ladies rendez-vous’d a second time (at—where else?—a school dance), thanks to the help of some mutual friends, the sparks were much more obvious. Sammi proposed first, just over two years later, while bringing Ali her weekly Saturday morning coffee in bed, and Ali returned the favor a week later, popping the question at the Met, in front of a gorgeous wall of windows looking out onto Central Park.

The couple, now both lawyers, live together in Greenwich Village, and wanted an engagement shoot that captured the spirit of the neighborhood where they live and where they fell in love. With the help of photographer Alicia Swedenborg, the ladies were able to realize their vision of a cozy downtown NYC winter wonderland shoot.

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Event Credits

Location: New York CityOther: Rings by Orr's Jewelers (Pittsburgh/Sewickley, PA)Photography: Alicia SwedenborgPlanner or Event Designer: Ever Swoon
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Road Trip: New York City

For the second stop on our wedding season road trip, we’re taking you to New York City, the birthplace of this blog—and the site of so many beautiful queer love affairs. Scroll down for lots of Big Apple LBTQ+ wedding inspiration, and explore our archives for even more queer New York City wedding and engagement shoots.

We love these quintessential yellow cab shots with Benette & KatherineJulie & Rebecca, and Jill & Susanne:

Benette & KatherineJulie & RebeccaJill & Susanne

And these Grand Central photos, with Wilkins & Monica and Tiffany & Karmen:

Wilkins & MonicaTiffany & Karmen

We’ve got love in the subway, with Amalia & Melissa and Ria & Robyn

Amalia & Melissa2Ria & Robyn2

…and plenty of City Hall weddings, like Jordan & Meredith‘s and Jill & Susanne‘s:

Jordan & MeredithJill & Susanne2

The Brooklyn Bridge makes a gorgeous backdrop for engagements, weddings, and *double* weddings, like these from Rheanna & MarthaLara & NicoleJulie, Kim, Jami, and Nivana, and Kristin & Diana:

Rheanna & MarthaLara & NicoleJulie, Kim, Jami, Nivadakristin & diana

And Central Park’s the site of elopements galore, including Laura & Louise‘s, Latrice & Maurita‘s, and Kelley & Michelle‘s:

Laura & LouiseLatrice & MauritaKelley & Michelle

Brooklyn offers brownstone beauty for Ria & RobynLauren & Emily, and Amalia & Melissa:

Ria & Robyn3Lauren & EmilyAmalia & Melissa

Plus, colorful graffiti for Emily & Robin and Ericka & Emily:

© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com

Finally, we have plenty of beautiful streetscapes—like these from Ria & Robyn and Marissa & Casi:

Ria & RobynMarissa & Casi
New York, New York! It’s a wonderful town for all things wedding!

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Wedding: Amy & Laura

From Claire of Wed in Central Park, Amy & Laura’s wedding planner: Amy and Laura brought twenty-seven of their close friends and family from Newcastle, Australia to get married in Central Park in April 2015.  They had their wedding ceremony in the Ladies’ Pavilion, which overlooks the lake with a backdrop of water, trees, and then the iconic New York skyline above.  They had acoustic guitar accompaniment to their ceremony, and a reception at The Cube at Riverpark, which overlooks the East River.

The couple met when Laura got a temping position at Amy’s work in January 2012.  Amy’s proposal to Laura was quite an elaborate one.  She did it one night when Laura had been working late.  Amy went home and laid candles around the house and rolled up a note with a quote from Dr Seuss: “You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”   She tied it to a ribbon and placed it around their cat’s neck.  Then she tied the engagement ring to a ribbon and put it around the other cat’s neck.  When Laura came home, Amy got down on one knee and presented her with the note. As she read it, Amy asked her to marry her.  Of course, she said yes!

When they started discussing wedding options they agreed that they wanted to combine a destination wedding with a big trip taking in some major sights in the US.  They visited LA, San Francisco, Boston, Chicago, New York and Las Vegas on their travels.  Originally they discussed getting married in Las Vegas, but they decided that it did not feel quite right for them. They wanted to get married somewhere beautiful, so they settled on Central Park in New York.

So, they had made their decision on the wedding ceremony location, but then they said that they had no idea where to start.  It turned out that I had planned the wedding of a friend of theirs in the fall of 2012. That friend suggested they get in touch with me, so they did, and we took things from there.  

Their wedding ceremony was held in the middle of the afternoon.  We arranged for an acoustic guitarist to be playing for their guests while they waited for the two brides to arrive.  The Ladies’ Pavilion is at the end of a pathway, with trees on either side of it, so this works very well as a kind of aisle for brides to walk down.  These brides arrived together, and they walked down the pathway to the guitarist singing “Only You Can Love Me This Way” by Keith Urban.

After they were pronounced married the guitarist played “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran while they signed the paperwork. Then, he continued to play other pieces while they took group photographs close to where they had held the ceremony.  Laura and Amy said that their favorite pictures were taken around the Ladies’ Pavilion and also overlooking Bow Bridge amongst the cherry blossoms.  The blossoms can come anytime from the end of March until sometime in May—it all depends quite when it starts to warm up in New York City—so they were lucky to see the trees in full bloom on their wedding day.  

After the wedding ceremony, the guests had some photographs taken in Central Park, then went on to the reception location.  Laura and Amy stayed on for a little longer to have some more photographs taken in different locations around Central Park.  Then after that they went off to their reception location, Riverpark in The Cube room.

Photos courtesy of Andy Mars Photography.

Event Credits

Location: Central Park, NYCPhotography: Andy Mars Photography
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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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Central Park Wedding Laura Louise Lake x Central Park Wedding Laura Louise night x

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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.

© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com© Sarah Tew Photography http://www.sarahtewphotography.com

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/)
Also posted in Attire, Cakes and Dessert, Casual Elegance, Caterer, Colorful!, Credits, DIY, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Music, New York City, Other, Pants + Dress, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, suit, United States, Venue | Tagged , , , , , , , | Comments closed

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
Also posted in Attire, Credits, DIY, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Pants + Dress, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, United States, Venue | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | Comments closed
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