We’re giving this school themed wedding at the ACE Hotel an A+! Inspired by the gymnasium vibes of the venue, as well as Alex’s career as a teacher, Pittsburgh wedding planner Exhale Events designed a day that was quirky and fun. To kick things off, the DIY’d stationery mimicked the look of a hall pass and notebook paper, complete with fun cartoons of the couple drawn by the father of the groom. At the reception, a wooden “registration” desk helped guests find their seats while vintage trophies lined tables, antique typewriters were displayed at lounge vignettes, and chalkboard-like menu cards adorned the tables. A set of metal lockers, pennant banners, and even a letterman’s jacket created a funky photo booth backdrop, while a giant chalkboard served as Alex and Matt’s guest book. Just in case you thought it couldn’t get any better, keep your eyes peeled for the FULL MARCHING BAND that escorted the newlyweds out of the ceremony. It was – in a word – AWESOME. Class is in session thanks to these images from Adam Michaels Photography!
About the Couple
Matt and I met our freshman year at Elon University. I was in the all-girls dorm next door to his all-guys dorm, and I thought he was cute, kind, and for sure the funniest boy I’d ever met. We were friends for many years, and in the spring of our senior year, we finally realized that we were meant to be more.
We moved in together in the summer of 2015 and got engaged in December 2016. He came to visit my family for the holidays and, unbeknownst to me, to propose. A violent stomach flu and a missing pet foiled his plans, but ultimately the engagement was perfect. It was an unseasonably warm day, and we walked our dog to Mellon Park, as we always do. He proposed while our dog, Archie, dug a giant hole in the dirt. (Sorry Mellon Park; we filled it back in!)
About the Wedding
Although most assume the school aesthetic was born out of my career as a teacher, we really built the theme around the Ace Hotel gym. I think most people who know us would say that we are both little kids at heart and that we really love to have fun. The gym screamed “fun” to us. We knew the moment we were in it, that it was the place for us. We wanted to capture that childlike wonder, excitement, and carefree nature of a schoolyard crush. That is what ultimately inspired us!
My favorite moment of the day was sharing our personal vows. At that moment, the entirety of the room was charged with so much positivity. I think I speak for everyone when I say there were plenty of tears, but they were woven in amongst sincere, resounding laughter and love.