Inspired by the bride's love of vintage glam and incorporating some seriously sweet details, this wedding is bound to leave you with all the feels. Caitlin and Adam met through an improv comedy theater group and carried a subtle nod to what brought them together throughout their entire wedding day. The New Hazlett Theater was the perfect backdrop for the nuptials and party, custom signs inspired by movie posters decorated the space, and Chicago style popcorn escort cards let guests know their place for the night. The cutest theater-inspired element happened when Caitlin and Adam took a bow before the crowd, just after being pronounced husband and wife. SO CUTE! Caitlin brought her love of the classic style to the affair with tons of gold details, a va-va-voom wedding dress, and a timeless feel overall. But here's what I loved the best!
- I mentioned Caitlin's dress, but her whole look was simply stunning! A curve hugging satin gown, vintage blue suede pumps from ModCloth, a sapphire statement necklace, and a faux fur wrap to keep the fall chill at bay…I'd swear she stepped right out of the 1940s.
- Not to be outshone by his bride, Adam was one stellar looking groom. His blue plaid suit was totally custom made and was oh-so-cool. Bye bye black and white tuxedos. Hello modern groomswear. Who says the bride gets to have all the fashion fun?
- In a unique twist on tradition and at the suggestion of the groom, Caitlin and Adam wrote each other's vows. Meaning he wrote the ones she read to him and vice versa. What started as a joke turned into a really sweet, really heartfelt spin on the I Dos and I'm totally in love with this idea!
Oakwood Photo + Video was on set (see what I did there?) to document every last darling, vintage-y, glamorous detail. This wedding has quickly become one of my absolute favorites. I bet it's going to be one of yours too!
If all of those gorgeous photos weren't enough, check out the video footage of Caitlin & Adam's big day, also from Oakwood Photo + Video.
From the bride…
When and how did you two meet?
We met in Chicago in the summer of 2011 at the small improv comedy theater that I was running at the time. Adam came to do a show during which he did a scene where he was from Pittsburgh. Being from Pittsburgh myself, I knew only a true Pittsburgher could pull off that accent. I struck up a conversation about our roots and and we quickly became friends. We were buddies for almost a year when he finally sent me an email to ask me on a date (he didn't have my phone number!). The rest is history!
Juicy details on the proposal, please! Where, when, how?
It was a Thursday night in May. Adam knew I didn't want a public affair, so he planned a night in. Reminiscent of our first date, he set up a mini bowling alley in our living room and made corn dogs. He decorated the whole apartment with a banner and candles and he was playing our song, “Baby, I Love Your Way” by Big Mountain. Unfortunately, unaware of the surprise that awaited me at home, I worked until 7:30 that night and got home extra late. I entered the apartment and when I saw everything, I froze thinking I had forgotten a special holiday or anniversary. I wouldn't move away from the front door until Adam got down on one knee. I said yes, grabbed the ring, and put it on my own finger! I completely blacked out and only vaguely remember details of how the night went down. We laughed, we cried, we ate our corn dogs, I drank almost an entire bottle of champagne and we FaceTimed with our families. It was an all around great night!
Describe the wedding. The look, theme, style, colors, etc.
Going into the wedding, I wanted a vintage glam feeling, but with a bit of comfort and our own character. We had a lot of friends and family contribute to our day, which added to the personal feel. I wanted everyone to feel comfortable and relaxed, so inevitably I stressed out like crazy leading up to the day. Adam's sister did all of the graphic design and she did a great job capturing our essence as a couple as well as celebrating the architecture of the space, which translated to our Save the Dates, invitations, additional signage, labels, and a gigantic poster that welcomed guests. Adam's mom crafted the “escort cards”, which were made of Chicago mix popcorn in mini bags on which name tags were fastened. My mom and I wanted to pay homage to the past weddings of our family, so we had our parents' and grandparent's wedding photos blown up and displayed on the bar. Adam loves Batman, so there was a hint of comic book inspiration in the Save the Dates and welcome poster. The Batman logo even made an appearance on our cake, as did some of the design elements from our invitations.
What inspired your vision?
I love old Hollywood glam of the 40s and 50s. It feels classic and timeless to me. I wanted to show off my curves in an exquisitely tailored dress (shout out to my seamstress, Nancy!) and a cathedral length veil because why not?! My shoes were blue with ankle straps and reminded me of something my grandmother would have worn when she first met my grandfather. And then my necklace. Oh, my necklace. It was the one accessory I was willing to splurge on because I love a good statement necklace. Lulu Frost did not fail me. I loved it so much and am nervous to wear it in plain clothes. Underneath my dress, my mother had made my garter out of one of my late father's old shirts.
Adam was also very into his suit. It was very cool how into he was. His sister had a friend in Chicago whose husband designs suits. I never went to any of the fittings, but I heard all about the process and how he got to pick everything from the fabric to the buttons. Adam and I agreed we wouldn't see each other's outfits until the actual ceremony, so the first time I saw the suit was when he saw me in my dress for the first time as I walked out for the ceremony.
What made your wedding unique?
A few things. Our venue for sure. The New Hazlett Theater is an amazing space. You don't have to do much to it because its architecture speaks for itself. There's so much history in the building and the fact that they only do about seven weddings a year makes it that much more special. And because we met in a theater, getting married in one was very cool.
Having so many friends involved in the wedding made it so personal. Our friend Rob officiated the wedding. Our friend Alex did the music. And we made our entire wedding party plus my brothers give speeches. Yep, that's eight speeches. Because we have so many performer friends, their speeches were all so spot on. But having our non-performer friends and family members speak was equally special. Everyone put so much thought into their speeches that I could have listened to them all night long. So much love!
And because my father had passed away five years ago, my mom and I danced together. We danced to “Landslide” by Fleetwood Mac. Not a dry eye in the house. It was a really wonderful moment.
What was your favorite moment of the day?
There were two moments – both very different. The first was while we were getting ready. The girls were all crammed into the green room backstage. Because both my mom and I were getting our hair/makeup done at the same time, my mother-in-law was assigned to veil steaming duty. None of us ever noticed, but the steamer was set up directly under the smoke detector. Naturally, the steamer set off the fire alarms in the entire theater. There was a minute of confusion and panic, but when we all realized, it was a good laugh. The fire department showed up and took pictures with all of us. They were great sports. My mother-in-law has sworn off steamers!
The second moment was our vows. What started as a joke became a reality about two months out from the wedding. Adam had suggested that we write each other's vows (I would write the vows Adam would read to me and he would write the vows that I would read to him). People were skeptical. I, frankly, was skeptical. It was a total reversal of cliches. Adam had finished his vows over a week before the wedding. I wrote mine at 2 a.m. the day before the rehearsal dinner. I couldn't sleep and my mom and I had this great moment on the couch in our living room where we cried about the wedding being real now. And then I sat up after she went to bed and wrote the vows on the List app on my phone. The first time we saw the vows was during the ceremony. I read what he wrote first and I could barely get through them. They were so similar it was unreal. Adam got choked up while reading the ones I wrote for him, too (This is unheard of. The dude does not cry.). Afterward, I had friends come up to me who swore we must have shared the vows before the wedding because they were that similar. It was awesome.
What advice would you give to other Burgh Brides planning their big day?
Know what details are important to the day and know what ones are only important to you. Know that those details are not worth the tears. Know that it is your day, but also know it is everyone else's day too. Your soon to be husband, your mom, and your soon to be family get to have a say too because they want to celebrate you. People will have opinions and will think things are more important than you think they are. So know which things you don't care about and which things you are willing to give to other people to own. They want to help and be a part of your day too – not because they are selfish, but because they love you.
And most importantly, know yourself! Know what pushes your buttons and avoid those things. And know that if you have to write a three page itinerary broken down to the minute to feel relaxed on the day of, then darn it, you make a three page itinerary broken down to the minute and pass it out to the 20+ people involved in your day so they can follow it (or not!), but girl doesn't it feel good to let go!?
Any must haves, must dos, or can't live withouts? Anything you would do differently?
Google Docs and Google Sheets! I love a good spreadsheet and Google Drive kept me so organized. I could quickly access things on my phone and computer and share things among vendors and the wedding party.
Planning a wedding out of town is hard work! I'm not just saying this because I'm on the site, but honestly the Burgh Brides Vendor Guide helped me out tremendously. I had no idea where to start so the Vendor Guide was a great jumping off point.
Anything I would do differently? Probably try not to get as stressed out and have a melt down with my mom in the middle of my street in front of the roofers and lawn care guys two days before the wedding, but then again I know me and that melt down would have happened no matter what. So must do's: have your meltdown and then go and get a mani/pedi and do those at-home masks from Sephora while drinking a glass of wine. It will all be okay!
Bride's Dress: Carlisle's of Pittsburgh | Bride's Accessories: Lulu Frost | Bride's Shoes: ModCloth | Cake: Oakmont Bakery | Caterer: Robert Maravalli | Ceremony Location: New Hazlett Theater | Cocktail Napkins: For Your Party | DJ: Alex Kliner | Getting Ready Snacks: Burgh Bites Food Truck | Groom's Attire: BLVDier | Groomsmen Attire: Topman | Flowers: Sapphire & Lace Design | Hair: Hannah Conard Beauty | Decor: Sapphire & Lace Design | Linens: Sapphire & Lace Design | Makeup: Hannah Conard Beauty | Matches: For Your Party | Photography: Oakwood Photo + Video | Popcorn Escort Cards: Kernel's Gourmet Popcorn & More | Reception Venue: New Hazlett Theater | Rentals: Sapphire & Lace Design | Stationery: Bethany Schreck | Videography: Oakwood Photo + Video