This past Saturday, after more than 10 years together, A2 and I got married! We traveled to one of our favorite places on earth, Northampton, MA, and had a small intimate wedding with just our immediate families. We have talked about marriage for years now, but started seriously discussing it after a few close friends, including S. and T., got married recently. We have always said we wanted an intimate ceremony but a big party and after being a part of S. and T.’s perfect little wedding and enjoying lots of friends and good music and another friend’s larger wedding, we knew we wanted both. So, we chose to do a small ceremony this past weekend which will be followed by a larger party this fall. It meant so much to us to be surrounded by our families as we declared our love and commitment and we can’t wait to celebrate that with the many important people in our lives in just a couple months.
- Dress – J Crew Cotton Candy Alexa in light pewter
- Shoes – Off Broadway, customized by me
- Pearls – borrowed from my mom, my sisters, and a couple friends
- Earrings – gift from A2
- Bracelet – gift from S.
- Bouquet – made by me
- Pinstriped Vest – J Crew
- Pinstriped Pants – J Crew
- Grey Shirt – Banana Republic
- Shoes – J Crew
- Corsage – made by me
Ever since J Crew came out with their bridal line, I have imagined myself in one of their dresses – turns out we were both meant to be J Crew brides! Many elements of my ensemble either came from J Crew or were inspired by their styling and the bulk of A2′s outfit is J Crew. We each wanted to wear something that felt like us, made us feel confident, comfortable, and radiantly beautiful. Our afternoon outdoor wedding, our personalities, and our thoughts on marriage all contributed to our sartorial choices, which in the end we couldn’t have been happier with.
We chose Northampton for the wedding, both because it is a place filled with wonderful memories for us and because it is in one of the few states where it is legal for us to marry. A little gazebo, in a little park, which we decorated with paper lanterns and potted lilies, proved the perfect setting for a little wedding. Along with a singer/guitar player and our officiant, our families piled into the quaint little structure for a short ceremony filled with many smiles and many tears (of joy of course)!
While, as I said, I had long pined after J Crew wedding dresses, when it came time to actually choose my dress, I decided I wasn’t comfortable with a long white wedding dress. It didn’t seem to fit my ideas of an afternoon ceremony in the woods or my ideas and beliefs about marriage, something A2 and I have spent a long time discussing. So, I turned to the bridesmaid section and was instantly drawn to this Cotton Candy Alexa dress. I knew the cut would be perfect for me and I adored its understated and sophisticated elegance. I also couldn’t resist a grey wedding dress with a built-in belt and pockets!
I love the idea of wearing something borrowed for a wedding and almost as soon as A2 and I announced our wedding plans to my family, I was struck with a bit of genius! I asked each of my four sisters and my mother if I could borrow their various strings of pearls to wear on my wedding day. The idea was partially inspired by the multi-strand pearls J Crew was selling for a while. I thought they were beautiful, but way to expensive and I couldn’t imagine when I would ever wear them. I think my wedding necklace turned out much more stunning and was much more meaningful. I wore my mother’s pearls as is, since they are the longest strand, and my youngest sister’s single pearl on a chain rested in the middle surrounded by pearls from my other three sisters, E. and another friend, and my own pair all attached to a white ribbon tied in a small bow at the nape of my neck. It was a bit of an experiment pulling them all together on the morning of the wedding (the first time I had all the pearls together in one place) but I couldn’t have been happier with the final result.
My shoes were another custom piece that I absolutely love! I spent an entire weekend in Chicago with my mother scouring Michigan avenue for the perfect pair of shoes. I wanted dark grey peep toes but not one store from Aldo’s to Barneys had what I was looking for. Given the insanely low price of my dress, my mother was willing to drop some significant money on the shoes (ok, maybe not Barneys’ prices, but well above my usual $60 threshold). But alas, I left Chicago empty handed. The next weekend I was shopping at the outlets with E. and another friend and we decided to stop in the discount shoe shop, Off Broadway, and there were these simple dark grey suede peep toes. They where comfortable, a beautiful color, and less than $40. To make them a bit more special and to tie them in with the dress more, I picked up two fabric flower hair pieces from J Crew and fashioned them into shoe clips. It’s a hard call, but they may have been my favorite part of the ensemble.
I also made my own bouquet and corsages for my bride and our mothers following the same steps S. and I used to make the bouquets for her wedding. The hydrangeas began to fade pretty quickly after the ceremony and picture taking was over, but they looked gorgeous when I need them to.