For Steph and Andy, getting dressed up and going to nice dinners is a go-to date idea. When it came time to get married, they aimed to recreate that feeling of a special night. A romantic dinner, lots of candlelight, and a good ol' fashioned party is all it took to bring their vibe to life. The Fairmont Hotel and the downtown area hold special places in Steph and Andy's hearts, so it was a natural fit to host their big day. Once the venue was nailed down, the rest of the details were easy to figure out – timeless, neutral, and a hint of glam. From the gold foil laser cut invitations to Steph's long lace sleeved Tara Keely sheath gown to the oh-so-bridal bouquet of white peonies, lilies, and hydrangeas (The Blue Daisy Floral Designs outdid herself this time), this day was as classic as it gets. After a Heinz Chapel ceremony, guests entered the hotel ballroom to find even more chic-meets-glitz details like sheer ivory linens embroidered with gold satin ribbons, a gold painted wedding cake, and lit candles just about everywhere they turned. What a special night indeed. And it was all expertly captured by none other than Steven Dray Images. This one's got me like whoa.
From the bride…
When and how did you two meet? What was the proposal like? All the juicy details!
Andy and I are in the same industry. At one point, we were doing the same job (title attorneys) for competing companies. He works for EQT and I work for Consol Energy. We met at a Young Professionals in Energy happy hour at Olive or Twist. He overheard me tell my friend I was hungry and immediately asked me to dinner with him. I awkwardly said yes. We walked over to Six Penn Kitchen and had our first date.
Describe the look, theme, style, and colors of the wedding. What inspired it? What was unique about it?
Candlelit dinner, romantic setting, neutral ivory tones with hints of gold. We love getting all dressed up and going to nice dinners, so we wanted to capture that feeling and atmosphere. We knew from the beginning we wanted a traditional, classic, and timeless wedding.
We really wanted photos of our grandparents, who could not physically be there to share in our day. So we blew up photos of them and had them displayed in the foyer.
What was your favorite moment of the day?
Aside from marrying the man of my dreams, my favorite memory is more of a feeling. It was when we got in the limo after our ceremony. It started to hit me – we just got married! We were there with the people we loved the most, holding hands, smiling, laughing, and of course jamming to our favorite music. It was the happiest moment of my life!
We did a first look. I really liked seeing Stephanie before the rest of our guests and not waiting until she was walking down the aisle. She looked so beautiful and happy. I was just staring at her until she finally said “Come here” and gave me a hug and kiss. It's easy to get caught up in the regimented nature of the day, so having that moment of just us together and feeling the excitement and happiness we both had was a great start to the big day. It calmed a lot of nerves. It also meant we could spend more time together instead of just waiting until the ceremony. It extended our celebration because we were together longer and enjoying more of the day as a couple.
What advice would you give to other couples planning their big day?
No matter how much planning or time you put into it, something is going to go wrong the day-of. You need to focus on the big picture, your feelings, and your partner and not let it ruin your day. No one notices except you and if you choose not to let it bother you, then you can fully appreciate and take in each moment.
We both are really glad we did the first look. It calmed both of us down and we were able to spend more time together throughout the day. It felt more like a celebration of us since we are experiencing more of it together.
Set aside time for just you and your spouse. It sounds like common sense but the day is full of you waiting for the next task, the next thing on your day-of schedule. It's really easy to get lost in the mix and not live in the moment. Try to sneak away or meet on the dance floor and enjoy each other, take in the venue, and the people around you.
Bride's Dress: Tara Keely | Bride's Shoes: Badgely Mischka | Caterer: Fairmont Pittsburgh | Ceremony Location: Heinz Chapel | DJ: Bryan Hoover of Pittsburgh All Stars Event Services | Flowers: The Blue Daisy Floral Designs | Hair: Simply Captivating Styling | Makeup: Jae Lee Paredes of JL Makeup Studio & Beauty Boutique | Officiant: Rev. David M. Anderson, Jr. | Photographer: Steven Dray Images | Reception Venue: Fairmont Pittsburgh | Stationery: More than Words | Videographer: Michael A. McKown of The Pros | Violinist: Devin Arrington