Unique City Hall Wedding in Jersey City • Olivia Christina Photography

 

We use the word "favorite" around here pretty often, usually describing a specific type of wedding or details we love. But we mean it when we say that our absolute favorite, is when "you do you", and today, that is this incredible city hall wedding from Olivia Christina Photography. Kate and TJ are artists who wanted nothing more than a wedding day that truly represented everything they loved. With their family and friends present to celebrate with them, not even a little rain could dampen the joy and love on Kate and TJ's wedding day.


From Olivia: Kate and TJ are the type of people who's personalities shine through everything they do. From their jobs both in art fields, to their eclectic Jersey City apartment, and Kate's vibrant hair, they never shy away from who they really are. So when it came time for them to plan their wedding, they kept the things that were most important and personal to them at the forefront of their day; family, friends, and each other.

They planned for a small city hall wedding with their two best friends as witnesses and then to meet up with their families at Liberty State park nearby, but the weather had different plans for us. Hurricane Joaquin hit with full force the morning of their wedding but luckily for me, Kate and TJ were cool as cucumbers and decided on the next best option: to hit the bar across the street for some post-wedding beer and french fries! When the rain finally eased up a bit, we were able to quickly head to a nearby park to take family portraits before Ubering back to the couples apartment to dry off.

Later in the evening I headed down to Raval in Jersey for their reception where Kate's creative talents were on full display. Each table was set with handwritten place cards as well as DIY painted vases and flowers. Pictures of the couple were displayed in a heart shape on one wall across from a hand drawn mural created for the restaurant by one of Kate and TJ's close friends and gold glittery streamers became a backdrop for people to use the handmade photo booth props. Guests mingled around the bar and dined on tapas until late in the evening and when Kate and TJ made their entrance, the room exploded into smiles and applause.

Vendors: Photographer: Olivia Christina Photography | Dress: Free People | Hair and Makeup: Kristina Maccaro | Ceremony: Jersey City City Hall | Reception: Raval, Jersey City | Flowers: DIY by the Bride

Chic Wedding at Brooklyn Winery • Deborahann Photography

 

The moment we saw Deborah's first peek of the wedding on Instagram over the summer, I knew this wedding was one we needed to share. Sacha and Ricardo's Wedding is everything you imagine a chic Brooklyn Wedding would be, and more. With both the bride and groom having roots in Brooklyn, the "where" was an easy decision. Together, Sacha and Ricardo found the most incredibly talented vendors to bring their dream to life, and from the look on their faces, it's clear these two had the time of their lives! Deborahann Photography captured every joyous emotion and thoughtful detail, telling the most beautiful story of their perfect spring wedding.


From Deborah: Sacha and Ricardo initially met at the Jersey Shore several years ago. They had their mutual friends and would spend lots of time together enjoying beach life. It wasn't until years later that their relationship began!

This couple has a real love for food and fantastic red wine and love to frequent several of their favorite restaurants in the Brooklyn area. Ricardo also loves to cook so you can always find him in the kitchen whipping up some yummy new recipe and Sacha right by his side to assist! So as we all know that with great food and wine comes the need to hit the gym and these two absolutely love their time spent together working out. Another love that their share is travel and so for their honeymoon they chose to visit South Africa and Mozambique. I cannot wait to hear all about their adventures and see some gorgeous photographs!

Both Sacha and Ricardo were born and raised in Brooklyn, New York. Ricardo grew up in Carroll Gardens and Sacha's parents had lived in the area before she was born and she regularly loves to visit this beautiful neighborhood and enjoys all of the fun things it offers. They share a beautiful home in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn where they get to wander over to a local park and watch the many beautiful sunsets right over the Verrazano Bridge.

When it came time to the planning of their wedding, they both knew it had to be in Brooklyn. They loved the Brooklyn Winery so they decided it had to be the place for the ceremony and also the reception. Sacha and Ricardo wanted everything to be perfect as all couples do. They truly put their heart and soul in the planning and choices of every little detail for their special day. From her gorgeous wedding dress made by Rebecca Schoneveld to her floral arrangements and bouquets that were artfully created by Rebecca Shepherd floral design, everything came together perfectly. Her bridesmaids pretty blue dresses were from BHLDN and complimented the groomsmen so wonderfully with their dashing navy suits from robbieandco. The winery was adorned with two beautiful sprays of flowers atop the wine barrels with the most lovely greens and lovely pink flowers consisting of many cherry blossom stems mixed with beautiful spring flowers. It brought such a elegant atmosphere for the ceremony.

Sacha chose the Wythe Hotel located in the heart of Williamsburg to get ready for her big day. The heartbeat of this sweet town is just perfect. I love the location of the Wythe hotel which is situated on a corner and has the prettiest sign ever! Everything was so nice and close in proximity which made it so nice for all of their guests. It was the perfect place to spend the night before her wedding knowing she would be waking up to the warmth and glow of the NYC skyline.

One really special part in particular of the wedding day was having their three handsome nephews and sassy little niece as part of their bridal party. The kids absolutely stole the show as kids always do. Seriously they were the cutest little people ever and each one made it down the aisle!

After a full day of getting ready, Sacha surrounded by her closest friends and Ricardo just hanging with the guys in their apartment, it was time for their first look. As it turned out to be a rainy day, we were still able to do so outdoors and the photos were quite adorable with the pretty umbrellas that Ricardo and Sacha hid under. I never appreciated those dancing little raindrops before and they added a special little touch to the photographs. From there we all headed over to the winery for some portraits, bridal party fun shots and the family portraits. As it was raining, we needed to do all of our photos for the day inside and the winery could not have been more perfect in every way for our scenery. When it did clear up a little, we actually were able to step outside for some fun shots.

Following the ceremony, the party began with an awesome cocktail hour followed by great food, fabulous wine and it continued on until the midnight hour with laughter and dancing filling every ounce of the winery. It was a beautiful celebration of a perfect couple!

Vendors: Photographer: deborahannphotography | Second Photographer: Cinnamon Wolfe Photography | Florist: rebeccashepherdfloraldesign | Wedding Dress: rebeccaschoneveld | Venue: Brooklyn Winery | Hotel: Wythe Hotel | Bridesmaids Dresses: BHLDN | Groom and Groomsmen Tuxedos: Robbie & Co.  | Bridal Shoes: BHLDN | Cake: Baked | Videographer: LVL13 | Hair and Makeup: Kerry-Lou Brehm | Invitation Suite: Invitations and Beyond | DJ: Funktion67

How to Start Planning Your Wedding • Blogger Bride Kristen from Maid of Henry

 

Our favorite bride-to-be, Kristen from Maid of Henry, is back with some of her best advice for all of you brides and grooms to-be! "When asked what my most valuable resource has been so far in my wedding planning, my answer is simple: people!"  Read all about how this Blogger Bride got started planning her big day, and how she chose vendors that would bring her dream to life! 


“If you can dream it, you can do it.” - Walt Disney

When asked what my most valuable resource has been so far in my wedding planning, my answer is simple: people! I’m fortunate to have been a part of so many of my loved ones’ wedding journeys where I was able to learn about and experience many different wedding vendors. It is important to find vendors that you can trust will take the time to get to know you and your fiancé so they can bring your wedding dreams to life!

Blogger Bride Kristen from Maid of Henry shares how she started planning her wedding! Photo by Nicole DeTone

Very soon after Kevin and I got engaged, we began our venue-venture. When it comes to choosing your perfect venue, I encourage you to make a list of any “nonnegotiables” you may have. Mine were: ballroom windows and outdoor cocktail hour space. I also knew that a venue set on the water was something I would love to have but didn’t necessarily need. We used these elements as a guide in our search. We did a lot of our research online! I created and used a very detailed template to record each venue’s important information such as capacity and distance. We decided on a venue that Kevin’s mom mentioned in conversation after hearing what we were looking for. After we walked into the ballroom with floor-length windows which looked out on the outdoor patio and serene lake, we saw our initials on the fireplace from a wedding the night before. A that moment, we knew it was fate and signed the papers!

Blogger Bride Kristen from Maid of Henry shares how she started planning her wedding! Photo by Nicole DeTone

Immediately after finding a compatible date between our venue and church, I reached out to the photographer we wanted (the beautiful and amazing Nicole DeTone) to make sure she was available that day! I’m lucky that she’s my best friend’s sister in law because I knew I wanted to use her long before Kevin and I were engaged. Before you book your photographer, decide how you want your wedding day to be captured in photos. Some photographers have an artsy way of capturing moments where they incorporate special angles and creative lighting. Other photographers have a more simplistic and traditional style. I’ve always loved a clean, soft, elegant look and that’s exactly what Nicole’s photos reflect. In addition to timeless photos, we also wanted the energy and spirit of our wedding day captured. I contacted a few of my bride-friends and began researching their recommendations. After watching many, many sample wedding videos, we felt a spark with one particular company that specialized in created movie-like videos that were loaded with love and had high energy. We set up a phone-date to run through some questions we had and when we saw how overly accommodating and personal they were, we booked them!

© Nicole DeTone Photography - K + K Engagement Party July 2016-107.jpg

As far as entertainment, bands and DJs both have their perks! It is totally dependent on your personal preference and budget. A great DJ can usually play any song you’d like to hear, and it will sound exactly how you know and love it. Bands are dynamic and can absolutely set the tone for your reception! Whichever you choose, you absolutely must listen to them live beforehand (if possible, as a wedding guest!). As Kevin and I thought back on the entertainment at some of our favorite weddings, a special one came to mind. We remember being on the dance floor the entire time which is the surest sign of great entertainment. After asking the bride and groom about their experience with this band, they told us exactly what we wanted to hear. The band was reasonably priced and extremely accommodating! Kevin and my nonnegotiables for a band were that they had to have both a female and male singer and we also wanted a band that took minimal breaks throughout the night. This band had both of our wishes and after listening to them again at a live showcase, our decision was made!

Blogger Bride Kristen from Maid of Henry shares how she started planning her wedding! Photo by Nicole DeTone

I’m sure you’re seeing a pattern! All of the vendors Kevin and I chose fit our personal style and were people we felt comfortable with. We based our decisions on experience, credible referrals, and reviews. We trust that the vendors we chose will contribute to making our day wonderful and I hope this serves as a helpful guide in finding your dream-vendors too!
 

All Photography by Nicole DeTone