Rob was at a bridal expo in 2003 when noticed Stephanie, a budding invitation designer, enter the venue. “He worked for a band called Stolen Moments,” Stephanie recalled. “But I stole his heart. He said it was love at first sight when he saw me walk through the door.” They met that day and eventually shared a cup of coffee and took in “The Polar Express.” “We went out for a cup of coffee and it was history after that,” she said. In Rob, from Yonkers, New York, she found someone who shared her interests, who loved her and her family and who would do anything to help her. “I had dated the frogs, and I finally met my prince,” says Stephanie, of Newark. “It felt like home when I was with him.”
Stephanie knew that Rob would pop the question because they had picked out a ring together, but it was still a happy surprise when he dropped to one knee in front of their Christmas tree on Christmas Day in 2015. “I cried,” Stephanie says. “I was very emotional, that finally I found someone who loved me unconditionally.”
Details of the day:
The couple tied the knot on Nov. 11, 2017, at the Mallard Island Yacht Club in Manahawkin. The boathouse chapel was filled with flowers, candlelight and a gorgeous crystal chandelier, the dramatic backdrop for their ceremony at dusk. As Stephanie shined in her crystal and beaded mermaid gown, her bridal party wore a stunning mix of rose gold sequins and blush chiffon dresses, the perfect complement to the burgundy jackets worn by Rob and his groomsmen.
The ballroom reception was elegant, with high and low floral arrangements in golden candelabras and hanging crystal garland. Stephanie planned the wedding herself and designed the invitations, which arrived in velvet-lined boxes, and all of the wedding stationery, including monograms on various items. The event also featured a ring bearer pillow made from Stephanie’s heirloom christening gown and a model sailboat handmade by her dad as a wedding gift and was on display at the reception.
“Hands down, it was our first look,” Stephanie says. The couple shared the private moment before the ceremony in the chapel. “It felt like time just stopped,” she said. “It was just beautiful. I felt like I was in a fairy tale, like it was something out of a movie.”
Sharing their first dance together as their 15-year-old nephew Nicholas Somodi sang “Can’t Help Falling in Love.” “This kid has a voice,” she said. “It was magnificent. It was a really special moment with our nephew.”
Advice for other brides:
Never lose your sense of humor when planning the wedding. “It can get stressful,” she says. “I always say to Rob, ‘If we made it through wedding planning, we’ll make it through married life.’”
The couple enjoyed a magical trip to St. Lucia and are now home in Little Egg Harbor.
Mallard Island Yacht Club
Mallard Island Yacht Club
Therese Marie Wagner and Jules C. Wagner