This photo sums up the feeling of Michelle and Dan's wedding last Saturday- A dozen red roses and a handwritten and framed love letter from the groom to his bride. It was the first of many touching and beautiful moments in the course of a spectacular day.
We started the day at The Four Seasons in Philadelphia with a bevy of lovelies primping and giggling while waiting for the photographer. The bride was calm and relaxed as she sat by the window having her pretty face made even prettier by the expert hands of Vanity Salon. With each ring of the doorbell, and each bridesmaid appearing, the excitement grew. It wasn't long before all 8 girls and the bride were drinking champagne and chatting as John Barone was snapping his camera and Tweed Productions was getting it all on film. While downstairs, the groom and his groomsmen were nervously trying to tie bow ties and I tried to get everyone in a tuxedo jacket and pinned with a rose. The concierge at the hotel graciously came to the rescue to help me and the men with the ties. Though I had printed out directions for them, the fingers just weren't working fast enough. Time was of the essence and we needed to keep moving. As I ran back and forth between the 4th and the 6th floors, Michelle's mom was putting her into the traditional bridal sari for photos. "The Dress" was still on a hanger on the door, but Michelle was happy to take some photos in a sari for her mother. The girls were in amazement as they watched the process of folding and pinning the sari.
Finally, the guys were ready to head out to the fountain- and the girls stood at the window watching as John and Jay led Dan and the boys around outside. Meanwhile, the buses were arriving- a huge piece of the day. All the guests were staying at three hotels in the city and had to be transported to church and then to The Willows for the reception. Also, there was a school bus for the guys to get to church and a limousine for the girls. All of this had to be coordinated and timed to the minute. The bride and groom did not see each other before the ceremony,so I had to keep them apart for pictures. The buses were great! The school bus was adorable and the limo driver made sure the bride didn't get dirty in and out of the car. I love working with pros!
There were plenty of details for this wedding! And, they changed constantly during the process. So, I had to keep careful notes and check in with vendors often to keep everyone on the same page. Michelle, be in the fashion industry, has great taste. She wanted every element of her wedding to be perfect. And, with a Blackberry, and iphone and an ipad- pictures from the internet were a daily surprise in my inbox! The gorgeous flowers, by Chantilly Floral, were amazing! Three shade of pink- from fuschia to medium to light pink and hen mixed with ivory, to create these very lush bouquets and centerpieces. Michelle combined a mix of high trumpet vases with three dozen fuschia roses on top and pink calla lilies floating inside, with alternate square vessels, six to a table, with three dozen mixed roses scattered between the six vessels. Gold chairs, ivory linens and gold edged china, made for a beautiful table setting. And, there was lots of candlelight and pink uplighting in the tent thanks to Moore Events. Other details included the custom table numbers made by- ME! And, the unique escort cards- a full blown rose with a calligraphied leaf for each guest. The leaves came from Etsy and the assembly of the leaf to the rose was done by my daughter. Also, I made 50 pew bows for the church which was a darling little Catholic church. Every room at The Willows was lit with votives and scattered with vases of roses. When the guests arrived for cocktails on the patio, they were greeted by the wonderful staff of Perfect Setting catering and a "Blushing Bride" - pink, of course. Oh- let's not forget THE DRESS! Vera Wang and stunning! Michelle looked like a Barbie doll in her ivory satin gown with a billow of organza flounce on the bottom.
When the party moved into the tent, we didn't need the heaters to keep everyone warm! There was plenty of energy and great food to do that! The introduction was easy- just the happy couple. They were so excited that the DJ didn't even get their names announced before they made their grand entrance! The groom thanked everyone for being there and handed over the microphone to the bride's father for the blessing. Then the bride's sister and the groom's brother gave two touching toasts before dinner. Michelle and Dan waited until after dinner to do their first dance- a Motown favorite to get the party in high gear- AND IT DID! With the help of the very talented Vaughn Walter, from Silver Sound, the tables emptied to the dance floor and stayed that way all night! Vaughn really rocked the party!! Getting the cake cut was a challenge, as the couple didn't want to stop long enough to do it. Once they did, John had to do 3 takes to get a shot of them feeding each other- it was really cute and SO funny!! Cake and chocolate covered strawberries were set out for dessert along with a lovely coffee station. Perfect Setting did a fabulous job all night! Again- I love working with the pros!!
There was no break in the fun. Everyone was on the dance floor! The groomsmen did an Irish jig for the groom, the bride's family danced some Bollywood and taught the girls how and they even danced the hora- though the couple wasn't Jewish! It was a perfect day! The couple were happy, the food was good, the music was upbeat and great fun and...IT DIDN'T RAIN! I promised the bride it wouldn't and the rain gods and I kept the promise! I LOVE my job!