Category Archives: Urban

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: Jennifer & Amanda

From Amanda: As Jen and I approach our first anniversary we discovered we didn’t accomplish something very important on our to-do list. This submission is officially the last check mark from the wedding (better late than never?).

We met as so many tend to: through mutual friends. Though in our defense it was never intended to be a “match,” and we went years before exploring the possibility. As time went by, we continued to see each other every summer at our annual meeting (professional, not hyperbole) and to have fun catching up. Eventually we both found ourselves single…with me shortly moving across the country for a doctoral program. The perfect time to start a relationship! Two years of long distance later, and we are geographically together for good. Now in Tampa, we are loving life and wanting to share our happiness.

Jen proposed in a wonderfully surprising way on our 5 year anniversary. After repeatedly making sure she meant it, I emphatically agreed to spend the rest of my life with her (we both had to be sure). Next step, wedding planning. The general thoughts were easy—gather our families and friends together for an amazing party. Next we had to figure out how to actually plan a wedding. Insert amazing wedding coordinator. We each had a must have: Jen’s was awesome live music, Amanda’s was an unparalleled open bar. Both were seen to be essential in aforementioned amazing party. Insert said coordinator (shoutout Rena Carideo), and voila! Best wedding ever.

We were so happy to show off the city we now love to those that mean the most to us. The day could not have gone better. We were able to be ourselves, stand up with our favorite people in the world, have a wedding officiated by a wonderful friend, drink (and I think we can all agree, all weddings should be solidified with a toast), dance, and celebrate. Perfection.

Photos courtesy of Bára Miller Photography.

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Event Credits

Catering: Salt Block Catering//http://saltblockcatering.com/Location: Tampa, Florida & Planner: Rena Carideo//http://eventlab1.com/the-lab/Photography: Bára Miller Photography//http://www.baramiller.com/blog/
Also posted in Attire, Caterer, Credits, Florida, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Pants + Pants, Photography, Planner and Event Design, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, United States | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Responses

Wedding: Julie & Laura

From Heather at Greatest Expectations, Julie & Laura’s wedding planner: Julie & Laura were married at Chicago’s Ignite Glass Studios. They are two of the most joyful, fun-loving women we’ve ever met. Their energy was contagious throughout their beautiful wedding day, and their personalities were carried through every detail – homemade candle favors, riddles on the table numbers, and s’mores for dessert. 

Photos courtesy of Steve Koo Photography.

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Event Credits

Catering: Boutique Bites// Florist & Decor: Fleur Location: Chicago, Illinois// Venue: Ignite Glass StudiosMusic: Matt Lewis & The Union// Rentals: TablescapesOfficiant: Richard Neely// Paper & Signage: Courtney Callahan Paper Photography: Steve Koo Photography// Wedding Planner & Coordinator: Heather Vickery, Greatest Expectations
Also posted in Attire, Caterer, Classic, Credits, Florist, Illinois, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Music, Officiant, Other, Pants + Dress, Photography, Planner and Event Design, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, United States, Venue, Wedding Attire | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 1 Response

Wedding: Carol & Anna

From Erin, Carol and Anna’s photographerCarol and Anna have been together 16 years. These two incredible women met the “old fashioned way”, playing softball. It’s not everyday that two beautiful souls find their way into each other’s lives the way that Carol and Anna did, it’s just so seldom nowadays. After meeting these two, spending time with them and laughing with them, it’s easy to see how they fell for one another. The weather on the day of Carol and Anna’s wedding was stunning, the sun was shinning, the sky was deep blue and the air was tickled with just a hint of cool. It was a gorgeous day, full of love, smiles, adoring looks and lots and lots of friends who surrounded these two with so much love and joy! Carol and Anna’s wedding ceremony and reception left everyone who was there feeling inspired and happy. Inspired to love and to live fully, to embrace marriage equality and perhaps to embrace the Patriots and the Red Sox, just a little bit more.

 

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Event Credits

Cakes and Dessert: Fireside CateringCatering: Fireside CateringLocation: Boston, MAMusic: Chad Priest/A Taste of MusicOfficiant: Judith LoreiPhotography: Erin Long PhotographyPlanner or Event Designer: Christine MonahanVenue: The Metropolitan Waterworks Museum
Also posted in Attire, Cakes and Dessert, Caterer, Credits, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Massachusetts, Music, Officiant, Pants + Dress, Photography, Planner and Event Design, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, United States, Venue | Tagged , , , , , , , , , | 2 Responses

Wedding: Emily & Elizabeth

From Amanda, Emily and Elizabeth’s photographerE&E have such a sweet and enduring love for each other. The morning of their November wedding was cooooold, but clear and sunny. It was also busy with friends and family preparing the 8th floor of the Pacific Tower that overlooks Seattle. The excited brides planned long tables to diagonally fill the space where their guests would both watch their ceremony and enjoy a second Thanksgiving feast. Each table was named after a bird to follow one of the sweetest relationship stories I’ve ever heard…

Emily and her cousins were riding in the car together one day. One of them was looking through an online dating app and swiping past profiles she wasn’t interested in. Soon the others added commentary, including the word “Duck” whenever she would swipe past one and “Goose” when she would give the profile a thumbs up. Fast-forward to early in Emily’s relationship with Elizabeth… there was a gathering with Emily’s family and upon seeing the way they looked at each other one of Emily’s cousins pulled her aside and asked, “Is she your Goose?” Awwwwww! She was, and she is.

We started the formal photography with a first look at Four Points – across the street from the hotel where everyone was staying. The pillars and urban backdrop added the perfect variety and compliment to their venue. Elizabeth & Emily were ecstatic when they first saw each other and hugged so much that their dresses became attached at the bust! Haha!!!
 
With their siblings by their sides as bridesmaids and bridesmen and Emily’s uncle officiating, these two read their vows of support, promises, and love to each other while the sun went down behind the Olympic Mountains and the Seattle lights began to glow behind them. Happy tears, laughter, and love swept over the whole building as the wedding ceremony ended with a kiss and transitioned into a sequin filled dance party.

For more photos of this beautiful wedding, check out Amanda’s blog!

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Event Credits

Attire: Bhldn & David's BridalFlorist: QFC https://www.qfc.com/topic/flowers-atLocation: Seattle, WashingtonPhotography: Amanda Photographic, http://amandaphotographic.com/Venue: Pacific Tower, Seattle, WA
Also posted in Attire, Attire, Caterer, Classic, Credits, Dress + Dress, Florist, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Other, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, Two Dress Wedding, United States, Venue, Washington, Wedding Attire | Tagged , , , , , , , , | 2 Responses

Wedding(s!): Erica & Alex (Part 3)

From Erica: When we planned our two weddings in 2010 (see parts 1 & 2), we honestly did not believe that we would see marriage equality in the US or the UK anytime soon, so when SCOTUS overturned California’s Prop 8 in June 2013, we were ecstatic! We went out to celebrate, and started fantasising about flying home and getting LEGALLY married in San Francisco City Hall, in my home state… I may have even gone out and bought a cute, white cotton £20 dress in a moment of excitement! We may have even started talking about updating my engagement ring to include some sparkly stones and talking about what kind of party we would want to throw!

Then, in July 2013, the UK passed the Marriage (Same Sex) Act and suddenly marriage equality was happening in England!* But what did that mean?! We were already civilly partnered here; could we go get a marriage certificate in the US and have it recognised here? Would the UK come up with a way for us to allow those thousands of couples who were civilly partnered to get married (if they wanted to)?? We had to wait until December 2014 for the UK government to get their act together and make it happen. Their solution: we could have the option of a ‘conversion ceremony’ whereby our legal relationship status would change from a ‘civil partnership’ to a ‘marriage’ and we would be issued a new marriage certificate with our original wedding date. Good ol’ bureaucracy….

Eventually, we calmed down from all the excitement and started to get practical. We decided on a small ‘conversion’ ceremony at our local town hall in London whereby we would renew our vows and then throw a party afterward at our favourite local pub. My parents were visiting in July 2015, so after having a spring wedding and an autumn wedding, we figured we should have a summer wedding as well! The day SCOTUS ruled on Obergefell v Hodges in June 2015, we were signing the preliminary paperwork for our conversion ceremony—we took it as a good sign!

The day was joyful and easy. Our closest friends, family, and godchildren joined us at the town hall ceremony. Colleagues of mine were busy decorating our rented brick barn in the beer garden of our local pub with bunting, pink balloons, and strings of hearts and we had jugs of Pimms on arrival. There were three Victoria sponge cakes with strawberries—one for each wedding—and a ton on Tunnock’s Tea Cakes! There was a perfect toast by my friend, Alex gave a speech (finally!), and another friend offered to sing ‘Married’ for us from Caberet! We ate, drank, and hung out with our friends until the evening when we hosted a 5-part pub quiz that’d we’d written! A great day…

Six weeks later, we met up with photographer Albert Palmer to take some loved-up couples photos of us in our adopted city. They were everything we’d hope they would be and perfectly captured us, five years into our version of married bliss.

*As of 2014, marriage equality is a possibility in England, Wales and Scotland. Northern Ireland remains under different laws and they are fighting their own battle there. However, after the Republic of Ireland passed marriage equality in 2015, I have hope for N.I.!

Photos courtesy of Albert Palmer Photography.

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Event Credits

Location: LondonPhotography: Albert Palmer PhotographyVenue: Wandsworth Town Hall & The Antelope, Tooting
Also posted in Attire, Credits, Europe, Lesbian Love Shoot, Lesbian Real Wedding, Lesbian Wedding, Love Shoot, Pants + Dress, photographer, Photography, Real Wedding Inspiration, Region, Style, UK & Ireland, Urban, Venue | Tagged , , , , | 2 Responses
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