Colorful DIY Wedding at Roselea Farm: Katie & John

Laid back, colorful, and dog friendly.  That's what Katie and John wanted their wedding day to be like.  A winning combination if you ask me.  And their September soiree at Roselea Farm was just that.  The casual affair was eclectic with a funky vibe, yet still traditional and charming.  From the hand-painted stationery to the burlap runners sewn by Katie's mom to even having the ceremony officiated by a friend, this wedding is chock full of DIY projects and loving tributes to their nearest and dearest.  A few of my favorite details include:

  • COLOR!  The best feature of Katie and John's wedding is all of the color!  Red, blue, green, yellow, orange, white, pink…it's gorgeous!  Vibrant and lively, the palette brings alive all of the joy I'm sure the bride and groom were both feeling that day.
  • The venue itself.  Roselea Farm is a working farm turned B&B, complete with a cottage, greenhouse, and even a herd of goats!  The quirky decor of the spaces, some of which includes antiques mixed with Pittsburgh spots memorabilia, makes it a unique choice.  Katie and John exchanged vows behind the 1905 farmhouse, dined near the garden al fresco style, and danced the night away inside the barn.
  • No bridal party at this wedding.  Instead, the bride and groom recruited their nieces and nephews to be flower girls, ring bearers, and dog handlers for their pooch, who played a major part in the day.
  • The personalized cake topper.  Katie and John paid tribute to their love of hockey with this one.  A bride in a Pens jersey, a groom in Rangers gear, and a dog holding a hockey stick…a small but cute detail that showed off their fun side.

Noah Purdy for Michael Will Photography was there to capture all of the heartfelt and intimate details of this wedding.  I know greenery is big this year but this feature just might be enough to convince you to go for something a bit more colorful instead…

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

 

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

Colorful DIY Pittsburgh Wedding at Roselea Farm from Michael Will Photograhy featured on Burgh Brides

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

We met the old fashioned way…AT A BAR (!!) in NYC, where were both live and work.

Describe the wedding.  The look, theme, style, colors, etc.

Our wedding took place on the grounds of Roselea Farm, which is located in my hometown of Moon Twp.  The ceremony happened behind the 1905 Swiss farmhouse and the reception took place inside the adjacent barn.  Above all, we wanted our wedding to be laid back, dog friendly, and colorful. 🙂

What inspired your vision?

The location itself inspired the wedding.  It's a such a beautiful, unique location and also a little quirky.  The inside of the barn is filled with eclectic decor, antiques, and Pittsburgh sports memorabilia.  Also, there was a donkey on location named Rick.

What made your wedding unique?

Our wedding had many special DIY touches.  All of our flowers – bouquet, centerpieces, flower crowns, flowers on the arbor, flowers down the aisle, flowers on the cake – were bought in bulk from Costco, of all places, and arranged by my mother, her friend, and a team of neighbors and Moon Twp. garden club members.

Our burlap table runners were sewn by my mother.  Our centerpieces featured DIY lanterns made from candles and multicolored wine bottles.  Our wooden table numbers were also DIY and anchored with cut wine bottles.

Our invitations and save the dates were hand-drawn and painted by our friend, Alex Sherman.  Alex also officiated our ceremony.

Our cake topper had a bride in a Penguins Jersey, a groom in a New York Rangers jersey and our dog holding a hockey stick.

Upon entering, guests were greeted by labeled mason jars to help them find their seats.

We didn't have bridesmaids or groomsmen, but we did have John's nieces and nephews as flower girls, ring bearers, and doggy wranglers.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

Despite all the fun had after, our ceremony was actually my favorite part of the day.  We live in New York City, and actually “officially” got marred at City Hall in NYC.  With that, our ceremony could be pretty informal and fun.  Our friend, Alex, made the ceremony incredibly personal and unique to us.  It was also completely hilarious and filled with fun details about our relationship and interests.  I think my favorite part of the ceremony was a quote/reading from rapper Nelly.

Any must haves, must dos, or can't live withouts?  Anything you would do differently?

I wish we had videotaped the toasts and ceremony because they were all so funny and sweet.

Vendors

Band: Cityscape | Bride's Dress: Leanne Marshall | Caterer: Rania's Catering | Ceremony & Reception Location: Roselea Farm | Flowers: Costco | Musician: Scott Elliott, Professional Guitarist | Photographer: Noah Purdy for Michael Will Photography | Transportation: Molly's Trolleys

Musician: Scott Elliott, Professional Guitarist

 

Rustic Sage & White Wedding: Zia & Dave

These two high school sweethearts started dating when Zia made the first move.  Fast forward to last summer and they planned the most gorgeous wedding I've seen in quite awhile.  Dave's family's barn played the perfect rustic backdrop to the day that had a vintage, organic theme.  A sage green, white, taupe, and ivory color palette kept things neutral while long farm table and cross back chairs gave a woodsy touch.  A pop of metallic was courtesy of hammered brass cutlery and fresh rosemary and thyme were incorporated into the place settings.  Everything was soft, chic, and oh-so-romantic.  Here are just a few of my favorites!

  • That dress!  The lace Nicole Miller number from Glitter & Grit featured 3D flowers, a deep V back, and subtle train.  I'm done over this one.
  • His and her favorites!  In honor of Dave's love of cycling, guests were greeted by a seating chart of escort cards fixed to a bicycle wheel with wooden clothes pins.  Zia LOVES popcorn so naturally the evening included a popcorn bar with an assortment of flavors.
  • The florals!  Sapphire & Lace Design hit a totally home run with textural, cascading bouquets, thistle boutonnieres, greenery table runners, and hanging floral chandeliers.  I guarantee you'll be left breathless!!

Casual, fresh, and as pretty as can be, this wedding was documented by Leeann Marie,Wedding Photographers.  Brace yourself.  Wedding day perfection is about to explode on your screen.

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Feel as if you were right there enjoying every last gorgeous minute with this video from So Fresh Films!

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

Dave and I have been dating since the 11th grade.  It will be nine years in October, which is complete insanity.  I actually made the first move.  He was in my sociology class.  I thought he was cute, and was curious.  I got him to give me and a friend a ride to the movie theater (because that's what you did in high school).  I hugged him at the end of the night, and the rest is history.

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  Where, when, how?

Dave and I moved to San Francisco for a summer after college.  I quit my job in finance and moved with him on a whim to pursue an entrepreneurial opportunity.  His dad purchased his mom's engagement ring from Henne, so Dave wanted to do the same.  It wasn't ready before we moved to California, so he had the ring mailed across the country so he could propose while we were living out there.

We were out hiking near Highway One when we stopped to sit on some rocks and look out at the view.  He took the ring box out of his hiking backpack and asked me to marry him.  He didn't get down on one knee (possibly because we were cliff side), but it's always been our style to go against the grain and casually invent things that work for us.  Looking back on that day, he was being extremely overprotective of the backpack.  I thought it was odd at the time that he was carrying the backpack in front of his body with both arms wrapped around it, like a baby carrier.

Describe the look, theme, style, and colors of the wedding.

Our theme was “vintage romanticism”.  Everything had a softness to it – simple but highly textural florals, a naked wedding cake, a vintage tandem bike and photo booth, farm tables, and brass cutlery.  Our color palette included shades of white, cream, taupe, and sage.  Greenery was used everywhere – as table runners, in bouquets, and hanging down from chandeliers.

What inspired the vision?

Since Dave and I first met, we've had a casualness to our relationship where we've always done what we wanted without being influenced by others.  I wanted the wedding to have that casual, organic feel to it.  I am not a glitter girl, so it was easy for me to choose muted tones, a dress with 3D embroidered flowers, natural makeup, and sprigs of rosemary and thyme.

What made the wedding unique?

The wedding and reception were held in a private barn on my in law's property in Cheswick, PA.  This was the first event ever held in the barn, which I'm sure will inspire many in the future!  We felt like we could own the wedding space because nobody else has been married there.  It's uniquely ours in that sense.

Our wedding had large family involvement.  Since nobody had previously held an event there, we had to figure everything out on our own.  It was a ton of work, which is why I enjoy sharing it.  We had so many hours-long meetings about catering access, bathroom usage, etc.  Since we needed so much help, a lot of family stepped in!  Dave's uncle married us, his cousins all came in early and set up the space, my mom wrote the place cards, a family friend made our wedding cake, Dave's aunt acted as a day-of wedding planner, and two family friends played music during the wedding and cocktail hour.

I wanted to use some of our favorite things as part of the wedding day.  I have popcorn every single night before bed, so I naturally needed a popcorn bar.  Dave is an avid cyclist, so we had a vintage tandem bike and used bike wheels to display the place cards.  I had a champagne cocktail at a restaurant in Chagrin Falls, Ohio and have never forgotten it.  I emailed the restaurant for the recipe so we could recreate it, and it was named “Bubbles N' At” as a tribute to Pittsburgh.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

My favorite moment was when the photographer brought us to the edge of the barn for photos.  All of the guests were in the grass below us for cocktail hour.  When Dave and I approached the edge of the barn to take photos, all the guests saw us and started cheering and clapping.  It was such an amazing feeling to look down on all of those people and know they were all there for you, to share in your genuine happiness.

What advice would you give to other Burgh Brides planning their big day?

My advice would be to be flexible.  Problems are going to come up.  How couldn't they trying to manage 200+ people?  For example, on the way to our rehearsal dinner, the plan was to have a walk through at the wedding site and then drive to dinner.  There was horrible traffic because of an accident, so we ended up skipping the walk through altogether and going straight to dinner.  During the wedding reception, the seating cards at the main table were off by one, so nobody was directly across from their dates.  The guests were able to figure it out by themselves and adjusted their seats accordingly.  You can only control so much, so enjoy all of the things that go right!

Any must haves, must dos, or can't live withouts?  Anything you would do differently?

It meant the world to us to have a bridal party that got along really well.  We were lucky in that most of the girls and guys are friends with each other.  It made things a lot easier when asking people to order things and help out.  We even had a joint bachelor-bachelorette party!  I'd say that you must introduce the bridal party before the wedding and try to get everyone together if you can!

You must plan the day according to what you want!  It's so easy for people to insert their opinion into your day.  Even though it's hard, you have the right to be selfish about your own wedding.  Everyone has one chance to do it, so pick the unique things that inspire you.  My favorite weddings are the weddings where the personalities come across and you can learn about the couple from attending an event they put together.

My must have was a live band!  A DJ isn't the same when you want the heart and soul of a live performer to inspire a large crowd.

Vendors

Band: Bachelor Boys Band | Bride's Dress: Nicole Miller from Glitter & Grit | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids Dresses: J. Crew | Caterer: The Common Plea | Ceremony Location: Private residence | Desserts: Pastries by Candace | Favors: 1820 House Candle Company | Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Hair: Metamorphosis | Makeup: Metamorphosis | Menswear: J. Crew | Photo Booth: Pittsburgh Camper Booth | Photographer: Leeann Marie, Wedding Photographers | Popcorn: Pittsburgh Popcorn Company | Rentals: All Occasions Party RentalVintage Alley Rentals | Rings: Henne Jewelers | Stationery: Nota Bene | Transportation: Molly's Trolleys and Antique Coach Excursions | Videography: So Fresh Films

Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Photographer: Leeann Marie, Wedding Photographers | Rentals: All Occasions Party RentalVintage Alley Rentals | Videography: So Fresh Films

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Rome Engagement Session & Film: Annika & Lee

If you can't get married in Italy, I'd say a Rome engagement session is a nice compromise, wouldn't you? Two Pittsburghers, Annika and Lee sprung for a spontaneous e-shoot with Enrico & Eleonora Photography (whom Annika found on Instagram just days before!) while vacationing in The Eternal City.  This modern, cosmopolitan couple traipsed around the well-known sites and off the beaten path.  The results are both edgy and romantic.  If it isn't clear to you that this pair is madly in love, you might want to check your pulse.  This session is oozing with passion and I love every.single.image, plus the gorgeous video footage Enrico & Elenora put together.  Treat yo' self to both!

Side note – If you're wondering why Annika looks so good, it's because she's the talent behind Glam to Go!

Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides Rome Engagement Session & Film from Enrico & Eleonora Photography featued on Burgh Brides

I'm kind of obsessed with this video too…

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

Lee and I grew up together.  Our parents went to high school together and my dad was in Lee's parents' wedding.  Lee is four years older then me so we kinda of missed each other in high school, but in my eyes, he was always the cute, older boy that I knew.  I was happy that our families were so close, but I was so embarrassed and young that I would only dare say hi to him when I saw him.

Years later when I grew up, we randomly ran into each other at Local in the South Side (like all Pittsburgh romances lol).  I was there with a bunch of my girlfriends and Lee and his buddy walked in.  My friends tell me that we immediately locked eyes that night and I can tell you that we hung out the whole night laughing and catching up.  As I was leaving the bar, he asked me out on a date….I said NO!  I told him if he was serious, he had to call me and ask me out on a proper date and not just ask me when we had a couple cocktails in us.

As I'm leaving the bar, I lean into him and whisper in his ear, “Meet me at the altar, Tenace (his last name)” and then just walked out.  In my mind, I knew I was supposed to marry him!!  After that, he was a good boy and properly asked me out and the rest is history!!  🙂  We've been inseparable ever since.

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  Where, when, how?

Lee and I had a work trip planned to Hawaii.  We arrived a couple days before the rest of the group.  On our first full day, we woke up extra early because of the time difference, worked out, took a walk on the beach, and then went back to our room, and got changed for the day.  As we are leaving our hotel room, Lee said, “Why don't we take a look around the grounds of the hotel to explore a little it more?”  Fine with me.  I was happy to see that beautiful place.  As we are walking, we “stumbled” upon a chapel that overlooks the ocean.  We went inside to check it out.  We walked upstairs to the altar and, as I was leaning over the altar to see the view, I turned around and Lee was down on one knee!

I was in compete shock and only remember part of what he said to me.  But I do know he said this, “You told me to meet you at the altar…so I did.  And I'm asking you to marry me.”

After a year and a half, he remembered what I said to him that night and he brought me to Hawaii to propose to me at the altar.  It was the best day of my whole life!!!!

Describe the engagement shoot.

OUR DREAM was to get married in Italy, but it was going to be so expensive for our family that we decided against it.  But during a recent trip to Italy, I went on Instagram and found this photographer that I loved.  I loved his eye for things and I was blown away by his style of photography.  I emailed the photographer and he just happened to me in Rome that same weekend Lee and I were there!  So, we spent the morning with him, walking around Rome while he took our pictures!  If we couldn't get married in Italy, I thought having our engagement pictures was the next best thing!!

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session: Kortney & Rob

For these two architectural designers, three of Pittsburgh's best features are its buildings, its history, and its views.  So for their engagement session with Breanna Elizabeth Photography, Kortney and Rob took in some of their favorite hot spots that best showed off the city's good sides.  From the gorgeous once-train-station-now-event-venue The Pennsylvanian, to the blooming gardens of Mellon Square Park, to the infamous Andy Warhold Bridge, these three traipsed all over downtown, taking in its richness and urban beauty.  Breanna, the lady behind the lens, also studied architecture, so this session was a literal match made in heaven for both the couple and the photographer.  Enjoy some of Pittsburgh's most beautiful sites while admiring just how stinking cute Rob and Kortney are!

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Architecturally Inspired Engagement Session from Breanna Elizabeth Photography featured on Burgh Brides

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

We met in our first semester of architecture school at Kent State.  My group of studio friends just so happened to live in his dorm, so our paths crossed a few times.  We were both so shy that we barely talked to each other at first, but his cute curly locks most definitely caught my eye!  We got to know each other well over the next few months, and before long, we were walking to class together, going on coffee and lunch dates, and deemed inseparable to our friends!

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  Where, when, how?

Rob and I both love the fall, so each year we plan a day where we get out and enjoy our favorite season.  It was the fall of 2013.  Rob had finished his Master's degree and was working at an architecture firm downtown; I was interning at a kitchen and bath showroom and finishing up my Master's degree.  We decided that we were going to play hooky this year for our big fall day date, so we requested Friday, October 25, 2013 off to paint the town red!  Our day was filled with so much fun and laughter – we explored Phipps Conservatory, picked and carved pumpkins, and then cleaned up for a much anticipated dinner at Bella Vista.  We were dressed to the nines – Rob in his finest suit and me in my favorite white dress, which Rob suggested I wear.  It wasn't until we were going up the Duquesne Incline that I realized this was no ordinary date.  I spent all of dinner anticipating the big question.  I even tore through my cannoli looking for a ring.

As we were waiting in line to go down the incline, Rob suggested that we go outside to the overlook.  Despite it being windy and less than 10°, I couldn't pass up one of the best city views, especially underneath the starry sky. At some point in our relationship, I had mentioned that when the big moment happened, I just wanted it to be the two of us.  Being the sweet and sensitive guy that he is, Rob made it a priority to pop the question once we were the only two on the overlook.  Well, EVERYONE wanted to see the view that night!  It took three attempts to get the question out, but before he even finished asking, I shouted “Yes!”  I don't think I even let him get down on one knee before I grabbed him out of pure excitement!  It was the best moment, we were on cloud nine.

Describe the engagement session.  What inspired it?

The engagement shoot was a blast – three architectural designers wandering through downtown Pittsburgh, sneaking into old train stations and standing in the middle of bridges while cars drive by – what could be more fun?!  Rob and I love exploring the city, so the engagement shoot was literally us enjoying some of our favorite downtown spots – Market Square, Mellon Square Park, and the Andy Warhol Bridge.  Luckily, I was able to pull some strings and get us into The Pennsylvanian, which is one of our favorite buildings due to its rich history.  We could not have asked for a better photographer and friend to share this experience with us!

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Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni: Diana & Marc

A ballroom wedding will always be beautiful.  There is something just so quintessentially…well, “wedding”…about them.  And today's feature is a prime example of just why they will never go out of style.

Diana and Marc consider themselves to be traditional, yet progressive.  When they got engaged, the couple knew they wanted to incorporate both of these attributes into their big day.  They ended up with a classic wedding day with unique, modern spins on tradition.  For starters, the art deco-inspired Urban Room of the Omni William Penn Hotel played the incredible backdrop for the ceremony, while the Grand Ballroom held the stylish reception.  A color palette of gold and ivory kept things chic while textured linens, an abundance of amber uplighting, and a mix of tall and low centerpieces added a trendy element.  The twists on the status quo don't stop there though.  Be on the look out for the following:

  • Ivory bridesmaids gowns.  Yep, the bride wasn't the only one in white!  Diana bucked tradition by dressing her ladies in a color that complimented the scheme for the day and her gold ombre wedding dress.  I love a bold bride!
  • A heartfelt ceremony entrance.  Since Diana's dad passed away, she chose her mom and twin sister to walk her down the aisle.  I'm sure those steps were really meaningful and sentimental for all three of them.
  • An in-the-round set up.  While Diana and Marc exchanged vows, guests surrounded them on all sides.  This style of set up allows for an intimate ambiance and it ensures everyone has the best seat in the house!
  • Diana's speech in honor of her dad.  When the traditional father/daughter dance would have taken place, Diana took the opportunity to say some words about her late father.  I'm sure there wasn't a dry eye in the house as the bride paid tribute to him.

Elegant, refined, and effortlessly beautiful, Diana and Marc's wedding was captured by Nicole Cassano Photography.  This feature is proof that you can break all of the wedding “rules” and still end up with a day that is perfectly pretty and, most importantly, perfectly YOU.

Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides

Classic Ballroom Wedding at the Omni from Nicole Cassano Photography featured on Burgh Brides

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

We met more than seven years ago through my twin sister, Donna, who worked with Marc's best friend and co-best man, Chris, in high school.  Donna and Chris had tried for a while to set Marc and me up.

While Donna and I were seniors at Notre Dame, Marc and Chris decided to come visit and go to the ND football game against Pitt.  Marc and I kept in touch casually for a while after that weekend, but we remained friends for a long time until we finally made things “official” by starting a long distance relationship when I went to law school in Virginia.  I spent my law school summers working in Pittsburgh with Marc until finally deciding to move to Pittsburgh after graduation!

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  Where, when, how?

Marc surprised me during my last semester of law school in Virginia!  I had been texting him all morning, complaining about a hangover and telling him that I wished I had a Gatorade there to help me feel better.  A few minutes later, I heard a knock on my front door, and when I opened it, I was shocked to see Marc there!  I couldn't believe he was at my apartment (which was over five hours away from Pittsburgh) during the middle of the day when I thought he was at work!  So when I asked what he was doing there, he handed me a bakery box and a Gatorade and said “I brought you sweets and a Gatorade for your hangover.”  I was still in shock that he showed up unannounced like that, because with the long distance relationship, we always had our visits planned out weeks in advance.  When he came inside, he handed me the bakery box and told me to open it.  As I opened it, I saw a cake shaped like a Tiffany blue ring box.  I looked over at Marc, and he was already down on one knee.  I took the lid off of the ring box cake and saw the ring!   He asked me to marry him, and of course I said yes!  We immediately ate the cake after he proposed, and it was absolutely delicious!

What inspired your vision?

The venue really was the starting point for our vision for the wedding.  The Grand Ballroom of the Omni is such a classically beautiful venue that commands a certain level of elegance for the events held there.  We always knew that we wanted our wedding to be more formal and elegant.  It seems as though the trend lately has been more of the rustic-themed weddings.  While those weddings are great for the people who have them, those kinds of themes don't fit with our personalities.  We are both professionals who live and work in downtown Pittsburgh, and we really enjoy the city lifestyle.  We are not “country” or “outdoorsy” people at all and we wanted our wedding to reflect that.

What made your wedding unique?

Our wedding was unique because we combined the traditional classic elements of a wedding with a very modern and progressive interpretation.  We consider ourselves to be very progressive, so we wanted to have a traditional wedding but with very non-traditional elements.  One very unique element was having the bridesmaids wear ivory.  I never believed in the “rule” against other people wearing white to the wedding, so I wanted to make a bold statement by having the bridesmaids wear it.  It was also the perfect color to complement the gold ombre color of my wedding dress, and I thought the overall look of the wedding party was extremely classy and elegant.

For the ceremony, my mom and twin sister, Donna, walked me down the aisle because my dad passed away several years ago.  This was a really special moment for me during the wedding.  I also gave a speech in honor of my father in place of the father/daughter dance.

We did not want the ceremony to be religious, and I was determined to prove that we could have a beautiful ceremony without needing religion to be a part of it.   For the ceremony, I wrote my own wedding “reading” that was comprised of excerpts from the US Supreme Court and Massachusetts Supreme Court opinions on same-sex marriage.  It turned out to be a really beautiful reading that many people loved and appreciated, and it really made our ceremony unique.  Keeping in line with the non-traditional ceremony, Marc and I both wrote our own wedding vows.  I didn't realize beforehand how much this would change the emotional element of the ceremony, but it made it much more special and personal than it would have been than if we had simply repeated words and said “I do.”   We both got emotional during our vows, but it was so incredibly touching.  I would really recommend that other couples do this!

Finally, one of the other important aspects of the wedding was the fact that I am not changing my last name, and I was not afraid to be proud of that decision during the wedding.  Throughout the wedding, we were announced as “Diana and Marc” instead of “Mr. and Mrs.,” and I am not ashamed to explain my reasons for keeping my last name when people ask.  I think that Marc and I were really able to showcase our unique, non-traditional views with traditional elements of weddings that still made it very special.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

Our favorite moment was walking down the aisle AFTER the ceremony ended.  It was so exciting to know that we were finally married and that we had the entire rest of the evening to celebrate to the fullest with our closest friends and family.  As we walked down the aisle as husband and wife, we walked directly into the Grand Ballroom and saw our gorgeous reception all set up!  It really was a magical moment.

What advice would you give to other Burgh Brides planning their big day?

Don't feel as though you are bound to tradition when planning your wedding.   I know that there are so many “rules” when it comes to weddings, but they're only rules because people feel obligated to follow them!   We broke so many so-called “rules” when we were wedding planning, but it made our wedding really fit our personalities.  I would not be afraid to do exactly what you want when planning your wedding, because it really is the only day when everything is all about YOU.

Any must haves, must dos, or can't live withouts?  Anything you would do differently?

Specialty linens and a cookie table are must haves!  The linens added so much beauty and elegance to the reception that could not have been achieved by anything else.  Even with fancy place settings, menus, favors, centerpieces, etc., the linens add an extra pop to the decor that makes it so much more fun!  I am so glad that I chose to use them.

Also, the Pittsburgh cookie table is a MUST!  This is one tradition that we knew we wanted to follow, because it's the best one!  Your out-of-town friends and relatives will love it, even if they aren't familiar with the tradition!

Vendors

Band: No Bad Juju | Bride's Dress: Maggie Sottero | Bride's Accessories: Zola Keller & MB Bride | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaids' Dresses: BCBG | Cake & Desserts: Bella Christie | Calligraphy: Brittany Zack | Caterer: Omni William Penn Hotel | Ceremony Location: Urban Room, Omni William Penn Hotel | Flowers: Budget Blossoms by Jilliann | Hair: Brooke Rockwell Hair Design | Lighting: Gray Phoenix | Linens: Mosaic | Makeup: Carly Tuscano from Fluhme Beauty | Menswear: Calvin Klein | Photographer: Nicole Cassano Photography | Reception: Grand Ballroom, Omni William Penn Hotel | Stationery: Just Invite Me | Transportation: Molly's Trolleys | Videography: Just Hitched Wedding Films | Wedding Planner: Amanda Mason

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Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist

Children of the 80s, listen up!  If you loved Lisa Frank, Zack Morris, side ponytails, and neon colors, you're going to LOVE this styled shoot from some of Pittsburgh's finest wedding talent.  When tasked with using a box full of mystery ingredients to curate a wedding theme, Sandrachile and Devoted to You delivered.  And I mean in an EPIC way.  They enlisted the help of Fresh Cut Prints and Leafhopper Designs to bring this unique, throwback vibe to life.  Vibrant colors like hot pink, purple, yellow, and turquoise looked striking against black and white accents and the blank slate-ness of the shoot location – The Union Hall at Bar Marco.  With floral arrangements of varying sizes, styles, and textures, gold flatware, vegan Relish donuts garnished with fresh fruit, and confetti galore, the tablescape was playful and nostalgic.  Because 80s music is the best music, subtle nods were thrown to classic jams with record place settings and bold fonts in the paper goods.  Even the models looked the part with a custom tulle skirt made by Kata Banko Couture and bold, bold, BOLD hair and makeup by Colton DeLong.  A rad, modern twist on the favorites of my childhood, this styled shoot will leave you both inspired and longing for those good ol' days!

Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides

Some behind the scenes pics of the killer team in action, working to bring the whole vibe to life.

Out of the Box Wedding Inspiration with a 1980s Twist from Sandrachile and Devoted to You Events featured on Burgh Brides

Photo by Jenni Grace Photography; From top left: Sandra of Sandrachile, Colton DeLong; Melissa of Devoted to You, Melissa of Devoted to You and Erin of Fresh Cut Prints; Sarah of Leafhopper Designs; Erin of Fresh Cut Prints

From the photographer…

In the middle of the December hecticness, I came across a post on Facebook inviting wedding vendors to participate in a contest that would put our talents to the test.  The challenge was to style a fake wedding in one week.  On top of the time constraint, we had to use the elements of a mystery box, and of course, we did not know what those elements were until receiving it.

Being the restless individual that I am, I signed up faster than light, putting together a team that I was confident would leave everything “on the field”.  Every member of the team was very talented, yet very different from each other in terms of style.  Our biggest challenge was to bring all these micro visions together cohesively, in a crunch time frame.  Despite being all different from each other, we all have one common core – we are all SUPER passionate about our crafts.  I named the team Confetti Unicorns, and together we put this styled shoot together in four days.  On March 15th, while the women of the country marched for equality, we demanded equality by doing what we do best – we styled a killer wedding.

Our mystery box had papers, acrylic tags, and confetti; we knew exactly that our inspiration would be from the late 80's and early 90’s…Saved by the Bell, Fresh Prince of Bel Air, Paula Abdul, New Kids On The Block, Cindy Lauper, and Lisa Frank.  We loved this era of so many icons, but we wanted to give it a contemporary modern twist.

We incorporated colors through our vegan donuts, which were iced and decorated with bright fruits.  The bridal ensemble was a custom creation of the amazing Kata Banko Couture, who in only two days and without ever seeing the model came up with an amazing piece that included layered tulle, a statement of the early 90's, yet it was a separate, which is a current trend.  The flowers were different sizes, styles, and textures, bringing the color palette to a full swing.  The bride's hair incorporated a pop of color though extensions, and her makeup included a playful eye shadow.  Since the 80's and 90's music was an underlying vibe, we emphasized it by upcycling records as place cards and in the stationery design.

And personally, as a photographer, I wanted to emphasize beauty beyond traditional stereotypes and standards by asking a non-model couple to be my model for a day.  This couple added the perfect dose of empowerment and sexiness, which in the end made us the winners of the competition, showing everyone the incredible talent we have right here in the Burgh.

Vendors

Photography: Sandrachile | Stylist: Devoted to You | Accessories: Rosey West | Custom Dress: Kata Banko Couture | Desserts: Vegan donuts by Relish Co. | Flowers: Leafhopper Designs | Hair: Colton DeLong | Makeup: Colton DeLong | Menswear: The Groomsman Suit | Models: Kimmy Johnson and Jeffrey Robert | Neck Tie: Becoming | Shoes: Cinderella of Boston | Shoot Location: The Union Hall at Bar Marco | Stationery & Paper Goods: Fresh Cut Prints | Mystery Box Items: Curated by Color Pop Events | Contest Organizers: Catalyst Wedding Magazine | Paper Inspiration: Suite Smith Design | Acrylic Name Tags: California Lustre | Confetti: The Confetti Bar

Photography: Sandrachile | Custom Dress: Kata Banko Couture | Shoot Location: The Union Hall at Bar Marco | Stationery & Paper Goods: Fresh Cut Prints

Cute & Casual Engagement Session: Stacey & Joerg

It's all smiles and cuteness in this casual engagement session from Levana Melamed Photography that shows off Pittsburgh beautifully!  Joerg is German, Stacey is Malaysian, and they met in Kuala Lumpur.  It's was a little bit of love at first site for these two world travelers, who began their long-distance relationship shortly after meeting.  They both now call Pittsburgh home 🙂  An engagement shoot that showed off their city and their unique personalities was the perfect way to kick off their new life together.  Their easy-going and playful relationship is totally evident and I adore the way Joerg makes Stacy smile.  Speaking of making someone smile, these images are bound to do just that to you.  Enjoy!

Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides Cute & Casual Engagement Session from Levana Melamed Photography featured on Burgh Brides

From the bride…

The shoot was very casual but highlighted the important aspects of our personalities, and the love for our new home, Pittsburgh.  We are both easy-going individuals who enjoy running and biking along the Three Rivers Trail, so it was a perfect opportunity to capture us at one of our favorite places.

Our shoot was unique because it highlights our lives as two individuals from different countries, making a new home for ourselves in Pittsburgh.  It was also unique because the Three Rivers Trails and Pittsburgh itself provides such breathtaking scenery for a photo shoot.  Our shoot also enables us to show people where we live and the places where we spend a lot of time.

 

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A Weekend Full of Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll: Abydee & Ryan

Wow, talk about a celebration!  Not only did Abydee and Ryan plan an insanely fun wedding reception, but they also treated their guests to a whole slew of events to celebrate their special weekend in August.  All of these events were inspired by one thing – the couple.  Abydee and Ryan wanted everything to reflect them, and by pairing with talented vendors who not only understood their vision but also their personalities, that's exactly what they got.  Unique florals and decor, a visionary photographer, more than one live musician, and a museum that perfectly captured the eclectic nature of the day – all of these came together to make Abydee and Ryan's day perfectly beautiful and perfectly “them”.  A few of my favorites?

  • An 8-course vegetarian tasting menu served at the rehearsal dinner.  What makes this significant is that most of the couple's family and friends aren't even vegetarians.  Yet, Abydee says everyone was totally blown away by how delicious everything was!  I love that the bride and groom infused their personality even into this meal, and that everyone embraced and enjoyed it!
  • Is there a better venue for this affair than the Mattress Factory?  A bit anything goes itself, this venue was a match made in heaven for this wedding day.  Casual, comfortable, organically beautiful, and roomy enough to allow for a flowing reception, the art museum housed this event perfectly.
  • Izzy the four-legged friend made for the cutest flower girl!  With her floral “collar”, she sat right next to Abydee and Ryan as they exchanged vows and then she hung out at the party all night long.  Talk about a well-behaved dog!  Izzy, maybe you can come give my dog some pointers.
  • Best reception entertainment ever?  It's quite possible.  Rick Larrimore and his ROD STEWART TRIBUTE BAND kept the dance floor packed!  Even the groom got up and played a few sets with them!  Man, what I wouldn't give to be invited to a wedding with a Rod Stewart tribute band!  Talk about fun!!!
  • The finishing touch on the celebration was an after-wedding brunch at Tiki Lounge, the place where Abydee and Ryan first met.  Not one but two live bands entertained guests as they feasted on yummy food from Double Wide Grill.  Now, THIS is a perfect end to a perfect weekend!

This laid back, comfortable weekend was chock full of parties, laughs, and good times.  Oh, and two people got married too!  Enjoy these beautiful images from Mandy Fierens Photography.  They are bound to inspire you to plan your own three-day party!

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

A Weekend Full of Pittsburgh Wedding Celebrations & Rock n Roll by Mandy Fierens Photography Featured on Burgh Brides

From the bride…

When and how did you two meet?

Tiki Lounge on my 21st birthday!

Juicy details on the proposal, please!  Where, when, how?

At Feelings Cafe during New Orleans Jazz Fest on May 2, 2013

Describe the wedding.  The look, theme, style, colors, etc.

Our ceremony was held in the outdoor garden of the Mattress Factory.  Our dog, Izzy, was the flower girl. She walked down the aisle and peed in the grass.  Pure perfection.  Our friend, Zombo, played music during the ceremony – Velvet Underground's “Here She Comes Now”.  I walked down the aisle with my mom and dad to Humble Pie's “You're So Good for Me”.  Following the ceremony, guests explored the exhibits and enjoyed hors d'oeuvres in the lobby.  We tented the upper courtyard for dinner.  Desserts were back down in the garden and the band (Rick Larrimore, a Rod Stewart tribute band, that we had seen one 4th of July) played in the lobby.  Ryan got up with them and played guitar for a few sets.  It was so hilariously us.  The next day, Double Wide Grill catered a brunch at Tiki Lounge.  Our friend's band from Kentucky, The Other Brothers, played.  A local Rolling Stones tribute band, Mothers Little Helpers, followed.  Friends sat in, played, and sang with the band.  Such an amazing weekend.

What inspired your vision?

Our strategy was pretty simple.  We wanted to celebrate!  With the exception of various dinner and holiday parties over the years, our wedding was going to be the first event where all our friends and combined family would be in the same place at the same time.  This creates an amazing environment and we were excited to absorb every second.  We wanted the whole weekend to be laid back and comfortable.  Well, the kind of comfortable that results from being tugged out of your shell and nicely forced to eat mainly vegetarian food and revel in rock n roll for an entire three day weekend. 😉

What made your wedding unique?

Ryan and I had a blast with the creative process.  We tried to plan an event that personified our relationship.  We learned we are not “Package A or Package B” people, and we therefore learned how much we would come to rely on amazingly talented local businesses and individuals.  Selecting the right vendor partners with unique personalities that complemented our own was crucial to the event's success.  From the rehearsal dinner, wedding venue and decor, to the Sunday after-party and music throughout, everything was perfectly us.  All that's left unsatisfied is figuring out a way to do it all again.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

Every single thing; I can't pick just one favorite.  But if I had to pick one moment to relive it would definitely be Friday morning just so we could enjoy the whole weekend again!

Vendors

Band: Rick Larrimore | Bride's Dress: Nicole Miller from Glitter & Grit | Bride's Accessories: Alexis Bittar | Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Nordstrom | Cake: Mother of the groom! | Caterer: Big Burrito | Ceremony & Reception Location: The Mattress Factory | DJ: DJ Zombo | Flowers & Decor: GreenSinner | Hair & Makeup: Izzazu Salon | Photographer: Mandy Fierens Photography | Post-Wedding Brunch: Tiki Lounge catered by Double Wide Grill | Stationery: Minted | Transportation: Lenzner Coach

Fancy Downtown Engagement Session: Brandi & Josh

I'm always a sucker for a good downtown engagement session.  But fancy it up with your best formal wear and I'm all over it.  That's just what Brandi and Josh did when they teamed up with Susan Stefko Photography for their pre-wedding photos.  Taking in some of the most infamous city center sites – like PPG Place and Point State Park – these law school love birds look like a chic, hip couple.  But their fun sides definitely peek through.  The way Josh makes Brandi laugh is pretty adorable.  If you're planning your engagement session right now, why not dress your beau up in his best three piece suit, grab your little black dress, and make like Brandi and Josh and paint the town red!  You won't regret it!

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From the photographer…

For Brandi and Josh's engagement session we headed to PPG Place, followed by The Fountain at the Point.  They wanted to have a session that showed them in their favorite city with formal attire.  Think young hip attorneys, serious but not afraid to let lose and have fun with each other.

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Vintage Organic Chic Wedding at The Frick: Lauren & Danny

When it comes to wedding styles, one of the hottest trends in recent history is organic chic and boy, have I got a doozy for you today!  Not only does this wedding embrace the latest look, but it also incorporates hint of vintage glam for a combination that is sophisticated, romantic, and timeless.

Lauren and Danny describe themselves as “old souls”, but Lauren has also always dreamed of a outdoor wedding.  So they designed a day at the Frick Art & Historical Center that brought the two ideas together in perfect harmony.  To embrace the simple beauty of the venue's grounds, sage green, white, ivory, and champagne played the ultimate classic color palette.  Florals were kept lush, fresh, and abundant, while decor was natural and wooden with a hint of sparkle thanks to some mercury glass.  There was even beauty to be seen in the countless, thoughtful details Lauren and Danny incorporated into their big day, such as:

  • The literary nods.  Lauren is an English teach and she wanted the event to feel like a Jane Austen novel come to life.  Mission accomplished, but the table numbers hand-painted on old book pages was an adorable extra touch.
  • Killer decor.  Crystal chandeliers hung above wooden tables adorned with beaded, sheer table runners.  A beautiful combination of the organic chic look and the vintage feel.
  • Speaking of vintage, keep your eyes open for Lauren's grandmother's antique typewriter, that served as the guest book.  A vintage camera and suitcase from Vintage Alley Rentals were added as other decor pieces too!
  • Old timey music.  A Frank Sinatra impersonator performed Lauren and Danny's first dance and during dinner.  The bride and groom first bonded over their mutual love for Old Blue Eyes and I love that they wove his music into their big day in such a special, entertaining way.
  • A grand exit.  A 1940 baby blue Dodge served as Lauren and Danny's getaway car as the couple brought their love of anything vintage to life in one final way!

Fresh and classic with a throwback twist, this wedding, which was beautifully documented by The Brand Studio, is sure to leave you swooning.  As least it did for me.  I'm certain it will for you too.

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From the bride…

Describe the wedding.  The look, theme, style, colors, etc.

Our wedding could be described as vintage chic.  I wanted the vibe to feel literary and romantic.  We chose to have our reception under a tent at the Frick Art & Historical Center, which was the perfect place for this event.  It provided a very chic yet outdoorsy and vintage feel.  I wanted to stay very neutral, classic, and natural with the colors, so I chose white and green florals and champagne colored bridesmaids dresses.  The linens were ivory and white.  Each table was adorned with small wooden boxes and mercury glasses filled with peonies, ranunculus, roses, and other assorted white flowers, along with greens.  I chose rustic wooden chairs and wood tables with beaded runners to keep with the vintage chic feel.  Chandeliers underneath the tent completed the look.

What inspired your vision?

I am an English teacher and lover of all things romantic and historical.  My favorite writer is Austen, so I wanted this event to feel as though it were out of one of the pages of her novels – a romantic step back in time.  I've always dreamed of a classy, outdoor wedding.

What made your wedding unique?

I wanted to keep with my vintage chic idea and loved how it all turned out.  We drove to and from the ceremony in a trolley, and had a Frank Sinatra impersonator, Michael Sonata, perform during our first dance and dinner hour.  We also rode away in a 1940 baby blue Dodge, which was the selfless act of a Pittsburgh stranger who later wrote us a heartfelt letter.

As for little meaningful touches, my friend Elise took the time to hand paint table numbers onto old book pages for me, which was representative of my love for literature.  My cousin Jessie, a graphic designer, designed pamphlets for the ceremony and made escort lists that she glued onto a mirror.  My aunt brought my grandmother's typewriter to set on the guest book table, which also held a vintage camera and suitcase from Vintage Alley Rentals.  My parents had a watercolor painting of the Frick Art & Historical Center displayed on the table as well, which was a wedding gift for us.  I wanted every detail to speak to the vintage chic theme that I wanted for that evening.  I'm glad I put the time into thinking about the little details as well as the big ones.

What was your favorite moment of the day?

My favorite moment was probably our first dance, which we practiced for months.  We took lessons at Arthur Murray, which was a huge accomplishment for my husband Danny, who is averse to dancing.  After months of practice, we finally had him waltzing.  Michael Sonata sang “All The Way”, and it was beautiful how it all turned out.  He then sang during dinner hour, and so many guests old and young commented on how special that was.  When Danny and I first met, we bonded over our love of Sinatra despite our differing tastes in music.  Whenever a Sinatra song comes on in the car, we think about that night and how much that meant to us.  We both describe ourselves as “old souls”.

What advice would you give to other Burgh Brides planning their big day?

Do your research, plan ahead, and stay calm!  Just enjoy this.  It is such a special day.

Any must haves, must dos, or can't live withouts?  Anything you would do differently?

I would say to book an excellent photographer.  I researched and talked with brides about this.  I loved ours, The Brand Studio.  Sean and John were so professional and took gorgeous photos.  The day goes so quickly, and before you know it, it's over.  Invest in a great photographer with a good eye for your style and a sense of professionalism because they will preserve the memories you'll have to peruse forever and they will be there every step of the way the day of your wedding.

Vendors

Bride's Dress: Justin Alexander from Bridal Beginning | Bride's Accessories & Shoes: Nordstrom | Bridesmaids' Dresses: J. Crew | Cake & Caterer: Rania's Catering | Ceremony Location: St. Paul Cathedral | Ceremony Programs & Escort List: Jessica Salinas | Decor: Party Savvy | Flowers: Mt. Lebanon Floral | Hair & Makeup: Salon Vivace | Linens: All Occasions Party Rental | Menswear: Men's Wearhouse | Music: Anthony Molinaro with Steven Vance DJ & Violin Music & Michael Sonata | Photographer: The Brand Studio | Reception Venue: Frick Art & Historical Center | Stationery: Nota Bene | Table Numbers: Elise Bimbaum | Transportation: Molly's Trolleys | Videographer: Nate Scherer | Vintage Rentals: Vintage Alley Rentals
Vendor-Credit-Shout-OutLinens: All Occasions Party Rental | Music: Steven Vance DJ & Violin Music | Vintage Rentals: Vintage Alley Rentals