Pat and I were the epitome of “ships that pass in the night”. We grew up in neighboring towns in South Jersey. We both spent every summer on Long Beach Island (even worked at the same restaurant a month a part). After three years of us living a few blocks from each other in Hoboken, we finally met in 2015 when I crashed a party at Pat’s apartment.
One weekend at the beach, Pat told me he wanted to do something fun to celebrate our anniversary. He showed up on a tandem bike with a polaroid camera and took me to seven different locations where we had great memories – our favorite lunch spot, his dad’s boat, even an empty lot that the cops caught us making out in one night. The last spot was at the beach on the street he lives on. His mom passed away the year before, and I had a memorial bench installed in the dunes there. We hung out on the bench watching the ocean for a bit, but Pat was acting so weird. Pat asked me for a hug as we were getting ready to leave. What the heck? It was essentially an air hug – so awkward. I decided to ignore it and went to take a photo of the ocean before we walked home. When I turned around he was on one knee.
I described the theme of our wedding as industrial vintage. I was inspired by a vintage typewriter and used that font in all branding element. Our invitations were very simple, black type letterpressed into a heavy white stock. Decor was a mixture of vintage elements with simple greens and delicate flowers sprinkled throughout. We spent months collecting glass bottles, candlesticks, old books, etc. My dad and I built our table stands, installing steel pipe pieces onto wood platforms to hang the table numbers and dinner menu. Our favors were custom matchboxes with our logo and the date.
It was a no-brainer. Location! The ceremony took place in a neighbor’s backyard on the bay. From there, Pat and I left by boat followed by our bridal party in two additional boats. We had the guests walk five minutes north to the reception at LEHYC, but we set up a cocktail pit stop half way in front of my parent’s house. Couldn’t let our guests get thirsty!
Our menu was family style made up of a chopped kale salad, jumbo lump crab cakes, beef tenderloin, and a vegetable orzo dish. The cake was delicious – lemon with blueberry filling and buttercream frosting. We also had tres leche sheet cake which was out of this world.
My dress was a Calle Blanche lace gown with a high neck and cap sleeves. I fell in love with it immediately. It was simple, sophisticated and gave me the chest support I need. It made such a difference to not have to worry about “the girls” slipping out and let me move and shake on the dance floor without a second thought.
Pat and I agree that our favorite moment was our first look. It was so special to have the time together really take in the fact that this was actually happening. We were overcome with emotion and it made all the difference to experience that privately. On a funnier note, after our first look Pat and I went to the beach for a few photos before the ceremony. As we stood on a wooden jetty trying to take ourselves seriously, the wind kicked up and my veil flew off my head and into the ocean. While it was totally surreal, we burst out laughing and I convinced myself that I didn’t need a veil to walk down the aisle. A few minutes later a surfer pulled it out of the water and a patron ran it back to us as we were leaving to head to the ceremony. Unbelievable- we were picking out seaweed and shaking it dry up until the moment my dad walked me down the aisle. It was hysterical.
The boat ride. Leaving the reception in the antique wooden Chris Craft was so so special. Having our bridal party on two other antique boats was even more epic. I really did not want to do a reception “entrance dance”, so pulling up to the dock while our guests were enjoying cocktail hour on the second floor was low-key but unforgettable.
Besides the veil, my front tooth chipped Thursday before the wedding. I had so much to do that I couldn’t wrap my mind around driving 45 minutes to get it fixed. In total panic, I called one of Pat’s groomsmen, who’s a dentist, and he brought the tools to fix my tooth with him to the rehearsal on Friday. Between the rehearsal and rehearsal dinner, Dr. Todd was bonding my front tooth in my parents kitchen. Total savior.
“Can’t Take My Eyes Off of You” – Frankie Valli
The best advice Pat and I got was to make take a moment for yourselves on your big day. In general, its such a whirlwind and so easy to get caught up in everything going on. Halfway through the reception, Pat pulled me aside and we sat on the edge of the dock just taking it all in. That quiet minute alone with each other is something we think back on all the time.
We spent spent half of our honeymoon hiking in Patagonia and the other half wine tasting in Mendoza, Argentina. The best of both worlds!