Thoughtful Vintage Wedding at the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden

Gorgeously detailed and delightfully colorful, this vintage wedding at the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden is SO.GOOD. Macae and Ron were having trouble nailing down a palette, so they opted to choose a word as their theme instead. “Reflection” became the inspiration for everything from the decor to their vows. Strung bistro lights gave the clear top tent at the reception venue a romantic glow, while mirror signs and mercury glass added a hint of shimmer. The couple wanted their love for family to shine bright too, so they provided cozy blankets and wooden benches next to the stone fireplace, and they made sure their flower girls made an entrance on a golden tricycle. Antique details abounded thanks to vintage china place settings from Vintage Alley Rentals, a 75-year old globe serving as a guest book, and monogram wax seals. Every color of the rainbow – from ruby red and steely gray blue to peachy pink and mustard yellow – made an appearance in elements like the mismatched bridesmaids dresses, the water goblets at dinner, and the gorgeous florals from Sapphire & Lace Design. It was all captured by Caitlin's Living Photography and it's all SO Instagram worthy!

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About the Couple

Ron and I met in 2008 when we were both tour guides at Allegheny College. Prior to dating, we were always put on the same “projects” in Admissions. I was once told it was because we were efficient in mail sorting and worked well together. But it turns out that Ron begged our boss to put us on the same schedule. Ah, young love. We dated for nine years prior to getting hitched, and have successfully made it through two stints at long distance. He graduated; I still had another year. I chased my dreams in New York; he stayed in Pittsburgh. Two years later, he joined me in New York. Together, we moved to DC to find a balance. He was offered an amazing job back in Pittsburgh, so we moved home and alas, here we are today! I’m so grateful that throughout the nine years together, we’ve both evolved so dramatically but continued to fall in love with the “new” version of each other.

While living in Old Town, Alexandria, Ron whisked me away to a winery tour in Central Virginia. I had a sneaking suspicion that he was going to pop the question given that he was carrying around a strange bag that he wouldn't let me touch the whole day. But by winery #3 on the tour, I was convinced it wasn't happening that day. That being said, the last stop on the tour featured one of the oldest spiral staircases in Virginia and I was pumped to see it. When I wandered down the beautiful stairs, I turned around to see if Ron was following behind, only to find him in a crouch position (getting on a knee on the stairs is hard work) with a stunning vintage-inspired ring and mumbling sweet things. I was so excited that I yelled out “YES!” prior to him even asking me if I would marry him. It wasn't until we walked to the bottom of the steps when we realized he never actually asked. So of course, he asked again (both of us a bit more calm) and then I burst into tears – naturally. Ron had hired a photographer to stand at the top, so she captured the most beautiful shot of the stairs spiraling around us and the EXACT moment Ron opened the ring box. We then spent the rest of the afternoon drinking wine and swimming at the hotel…dreaming up all of our adventures we'd get to share as a married couple.

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About the Wedding

When planning our wedding, we wanted our day (and the days leading up to it) to represent the strong pillars that we’ve used to construct our relationship: family, unity, lightness. We found ourselves thinking through color schemes but it just seemed so… structured and uniform. Instead, we leaned into a theme and decided to choose a word that would act as a compass as we moved through the process. When we came up with it, it all fell in place. The word? Reflection.

As you look through these images, please take note of this constant thread. You’ll find reflection in obvious places: the twinkle lights shimmering underneath a clear top tent, long white candles that lined farmhouse tables, glossy gold mirrors with handwritten menus, a roaring fire surrounded by wooden benches and cozy blankets.

Then, there are the less obvious details that are sometimes difficult to capture. Little touches that reflect a more simple time and perhaps, a more simple beauty: a vintage-inspired wedding dress, the lace threaded with gold, a 75-year-old globe where guests could sign above their favorite travel destinations, hand-stamped wax seals with our initials side by side, suitcases filled with cookies made by family, and craft bags printed with poetry.

A few other highlights: a gold bike created for the two most perfect flower girls, a plush sofa set so my sweet grandmother could rest, and hand-written vows that could have gone on forever.

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Favorite Moment

I'm an anxious person and reading my hand-written vows in front of 200+ people had my stomach fluttering the days leading up to the wedding. But when Ron and I were at the altar, I pretty much had an out-of-body experience. Time slowed, my breathing became more constant, and there was Ron and me…just the two of us…holding hands in an open meadow. I could feel the light and openness around me and all that weighted me was the touch of Ron's hands in mine.

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Vendors

Bride's Dress: Rebecca Schoneveld from Luna Boutique | Bride's Jewelry: Joyce's Jewelry | Bride's Shoes: Badgley Mishcka | Bridesmaids Dresses: Anthropologie, Free People, and ASOS | Cake: All in Good Taste Productions | Caterer: All in Good Taste Productions | Ceremony Location: Pittsburgh Botanic Garden | Day of Coordinator: All in Good Taste Productions | Decor: Sapphire & Lace Design | DJ: 2nd II None Productions | Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Hair: The Lavender Loft | Makeup: Joy of JL Makeup Studio & Beauty Boutique | Linens: Sapphire & Lace Design | Menswear: Men's Wearhouse | Photography: Caitlin's Living Photography | Reception Venue: Pittsburgh Botanic Garden | Rentals: Ambassador Tent Rental | Stationery: Minted | Videography: Brittany Adams | Vintage Rentals: Vintage Alley Rentals

Cake: All in Good Taste Productions | Caterer: All in Good Taste Productions | Day of Coordinator: All in Good Taste Productions | Decor: Sapphire & Lace Design | Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Makeup: Joy of JL Makeup Studio & Beauty Boutique | Linens: Sapphire & Lace Design | Vintage Rentals: Vintage Alley Rentals

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