John and I met when I moved to Ellicott City in the second grade. He doesn’t remember me then, but we were in the same class in third and fourth grade. We didn’t become friends until middle school. We went to prom together junior year, but never dated in high school. We started dating at the end of freshman year in college when John came to visit me at Pitt (from the University of MD). Now we have been together for 7 years, living together for a few. John surprised with a proposal in our Baltimore apartment on a random Sunday morning!
Our wedding was inspired by family stories that added so much sentimental value to our big day. My grandparents had a December wedding reception at the Belvedere, John’s parents got married in December at St. Ignatius. After living in Baltimore for a couple years leading up to the wedding, we always had the idea to keep these beautiful traditions alive. We also just love the holiday season, which made our wedding even more festive. We went for classic style and colors to keep everything simple and elegant – all white flowers, winter greenery, navy bridesmaids dresses, and a touch of silver and gold.
Thanks to the holiday seasons the church was already beautifully decorated for Christmas with plenty of poinsettias, so we did not have to do much at all! At the Belvedere, we wanted plenty of candles and silver and gold accents to make everything festive. All of the flowers were white, almost like snow, with plenty of beautiful winter greens. We even had some red berries floating with candles during the cocktail hour, which made the atmosphere eve more magical. One of my favorite parts about the reception was the table cards. My family spent some time coming up with the idea to use places that had sentimental value to John and I. They were a very simple design, but they chose street names for each table where John and I grew up together, dated, lived together, etc.
For our wedding day look we wanted everyone to look elegant and classic, so tuxes were an easy decision for a December wedding at the Belvedere. My dress turned out to be just as easy to decide on! It was one of the first I tried on, but I didn’t commit to it right away. It has a lot of sparkle that I felt like would only be perfect if we stuck with the December plan, which we did! When I went to Garnish, I actually had no idea what I wanted and specifically said no sparkle – not my style, but someone working that day convinced me to try the dress, and they were right! It was perfect for our special day!
I was most looking forward to the ceremony itself and saying our vows. I had no idea how moving that would be. Seeing so many friends and family there, so happy to us and support us. It was all so much more powerful than I thought it would be. We even spent so much time before the wedding deciding to play “Joy to the World” to close mass, and I honestly have no recollection of even hearing it when we walked out. We were so happy and excited, and it’s all a blur!
My advice to couples planning their weddings is do as much planning ahead of time as you can, and don’t stress about plus ones because it all works out fine eventually.