Tag archive for : Long Island

I posted the photos for Amanda and Miki’s wedding earlier this week because I didn’t want them to go a moment longer without getting to see some photos, but I’ve been so back-logged with editing work on tight deadlines that I didn’t get a chance to properly rave about their wedding and how wonderful it was.

I first met Amanda and Miki at their friends’ Ben and Hinda’s wedding back in the end of August. Like Ben and Hinda, Amanda and Miki are a Modern Orthodox couple. Modern Orthodox couples tend to have shorter, whirlwind engagements, so I only connected with the bride and groom to discuss wedding planning two months ago. In that short time, I have found them to be completely delightful and charming, and I fully intend to try to lobby them to move to Rockland County. I did my best to woo them here “upstate” (in quotes because most New Yorkers consider anything north of the Bronx upstate; locals tend to disagree) during their engagement session with our beautiful autumn colors, fantastic rustic barns and charming little parks. By the end of the engagement session, I knew they were a special couple.

SNEAKPEEK01

For one thing, they are up for anything. Schlepping a wagon and a giant pumpkin to a nearby lake? Let’s do it! Sitting on vintage suitcases at a local farm, they’re in!

PHOTO155

SNEAKPEEK14

Posing for wintry photos with sleds wearing this scarf I just bought at Target and haven’t taken the tags off yet? Why not? Let’s add in a stuffed toy moose and goose that they brought with them, two little tokens of affection that echo their nicknames for each other. They have so much fun together, and Miki didn’t resist a single quirky idea, (which is rare; most grooms don’t love the engagement session portion of our time together.

I knew that the combination of their adventurous fun-loving personalities, their exuberant and hilarious friends (some of whom I had met in August) and love of vintage-inspired details would make for a gorgeous wedding, and I was not wrong! Speaking of gorgeous vintage-styled details, I present Exhibit A, Amanda’s dress.

BLOGPHOTO01

To die for! She found this gown at BHLDN, Anthropologie’s wedding specialty retailer, which never disappoints.

BLOGPHOTO02

Her mom helped her with the finishing touches as soon as I got there.

BLOGPHOTO03

BLOGPHOTO04

We snuck outside for a private first look and some romantic pictures before the sunset, because once we came back inside, the party got underway right away!

BLOGPHOTO05

BLOGPHOTO06

BLOGPHOTO07

BLOGPHOTO08

BLOGPHOTO09

BLOGPHOTO10

BLOGPHOTO11

I loved that Amanda’s bouquet contained succulents, which she can plant and continue to grow long after the wedding. That’s such a cool idea.

BLOGPHOTO12

BLOGPHOTO13

BLOGPHOTO14

BLOGPHOTO15

BLOGPHOTO16

BLOGPHOTO17

We took lots of photos with friends and family (and extended family- people came from everywhere to celebrate with them!) and then it was time for the festivities to begin!

BLOGPHOTO18

BLOGPHOTO19

Amanda’s mom and mother-in-law led her to a special room where they got to sit on a dais and greet everyone as they arrived. People say hello, offer their blessings and reconnect, and it’s such a beautiful way to start the day. It’s so much more fun for the bride than hiding in a room somewhere!

BLOGPHOTO20

BLOGPHOTO21

This moment with one of the bride’s besties wiping away happy tears is one of my favorites.

BLOGPHOTO22

BLOGPHOTO23

BLOGPHOTO24

Meanwhile, on the other side of the synagogue, the groom was having his own celebration with food, singing and dancing.

BLOGPHOTO25

BLOGPHOTO26

BLOGPHOTO27

This moment when the bride and groom’s moms break a plate with a hammer is a significant tradition. Just like the breaking of the plate cannot be undone, the betrothal is also irreversible.

BLOGPHOTO28

BLOGPHOTO29

BLOGPHOTO30

After that, Miki was on his way to see his bride! He danced with his father and (almost) father-in-law on either arm to see Amanda. This is far and away one of the most exciting moments of an Orthodox wedding, in my opinion. Everyone is clapping and singing in Hebrew.

BLOGPHOTO31

Usually the bride stays seated on her throne-like chair, but Amanda knew she wanted to dance right up to her (almost) husband.

BLOGPHOTO32

BLOGPHOTO33

BLOGPHOTO34

Happy goosebumps broke out on my arms as Amanda’s dad offered her a few private blessings and words for her ears only before Miki lowered her veil.

BLOGPHOTO35

The men carried him away, still singing “Od Yishama,” a traditional wedding song of joy and gladness. The entire venue rocked with clapping and singing, and then things quieted down just a little as we headed into the sanctuary.

BLOGPHOTO36

The musicians played all Beatles songs as the procession made its way to the chuppah.

BLOGPHOTO37

BLOGPHOTO38

BLOGPHOTO39

Miki’s parents helped him into a kittel, or sacred garment worn only on the holiest of days, and then Amanda walked in with her parents.

BLOGPHOTO40

Oh! I should mention she was proceeded by the cutest flower girls! SO CUTE!

BLOGPHOTO41

BLOGPHOTO42

At this point, the bride walked in circles around the groom, signifying the entwining of their worlds, but the truth is, Amanda and Miki have been each other’s worlds for a while now. Amanda’s sister Lexi told me that both Amanda and Miki grew close quite quickly. He had invited her to go kayaking with the synagogue’s social group, which Miki helped coordinate at the time, and at first she wasn’t sure… was this a date or was he just doing his social coordinate-y thing? Lexi says it wasn’t long after the trip that Amanda started sounding an awful lot like she had met The One.

BLOGPHOTO43

Speaking of sisters, I love this shot of all four of the couple’s sisters watching their siblings tie the knot.

BLOGPHOTO44

BLOGPHOTO45

BLOGPHOTO46

BLOGPHOTO47

BLOGPHOTO48

BLOGPHOTO49

BLOGPHOTO50

BLOGPHOTO51

BLOGPHOTO52

After an exchange of rings, the sharing of wine, the offering of blessings and the reading of the ketubah, the deed was done! Married! Yay!

BLOGPHOTO53

Everyone crowded around for another chorus of Od Yishama, and then the newlyweds’ friends danced them down the steps, out of the sanctuary and into the yichud room for a few minutes of solitude.

BLOGPHOTO54

BLOGPHOTO55

BLOGPHOTO56

BLOGPHOTO57

BLOGPHOTO58

BLOGPHOTO59

Their peace and quiet was heavily protected by appropriately costumed guards, thanks to Miki’s sister supplying the props.

BLOGPHOTO60

If I thought the dancing was fun before now, I was blown away by the first dance set.

BLOGPHOTO61

The men and women danced separately for a little while before an excited throng of guests boosted the newlyweds up in the air during the horah.

BLOGPHOTO62

BLOGPHOTO63

BLOGPHOTO64

BLOGPHOTO65

BLOGPHOTO66

BLOGPHOTO67

I knew that the shtick portion of the evening was going to be hilarious, but around the time the guests busted out the mascot costumes, I knew there was no telling what was going to happen next.

BLOGPHOTO68

Interestingly enough, this is not my first wedding with mascots. It’s not even my first wedding with a guest in a tiger costume. I love my clients.

BLOGPHOTO69

BLOGPHOTO70

After taking a minute to catch their breath, observe blessings over the bread and light the menorah (this was the second night of Hanukkah), more surprises were in store!

BLOGPHOTO71

BLOGPHOTO72

BLOGPHOTO73

BLOGPHOTO74

First, some of their friends declared it time for “a shtickathon” with all kinds of props, toys, and art supplies. It even had its own hashtag.

BLOGPHOTO75

BLOGPHOTO76

BLOGPHOTO77

Then, their East Coast and West Coast friends decided to battle out where Amanda and Miki should live eventually- New York or California?- in an epic, choreographed danceoff, the kind that people must have gotten together earlier in the event weekend to practice.

BLOGPHOTO78

It was amazing. Of course, Amanda and Miki weren’t going to just let their friends have all that fun without them, so they joined in before making an announcement of their own…

BLOGPHOTO79

BLOGPHOTO80

They surprised their guests with a group funk dance lesson, taught by their friend Milo.

BLOGPHOTO81

After that, their parents got a whirl around the dance floor before it was time to cut the cake!

BLOGPHOTO82

BLOGPHOTO83

BLOGPHOTO84

BLOGPHOTO85

In keeping with their nicknames, the cake topper featured a moose and goose. So cute!

BLOGPHOTO86

BLOGPHOTO87

BLOGPHOTO88

BLOGPHOTO89

BLOGPHOTO90

After the cake cutting, everyone gathered for grace after meals. This is a uniquely Jewish custom practiced in more traditional circles. Although there are prayers before the meal- over the challah, for example- everyone gathers together after the meal to be thankful for sustenance, and fellowship, and fullness. It’s lovely.

BLOGPHOTO91

BLOGPHOTO92

BLOGPHOTO93

This was a peaceful and spiritual way to wind down the night, and soon everyone was saying their goodbyes.

BLOGPHOTO94

The bride and groom had one last dance in the middle of the ballroom all by themselves. They were basking in the glow of the festival of lights, of good food and good friends, from dance-offs and shtick and toasts and prayers, and of course, in their love for each other.

BLOGPHOTO95

The future is so, so bright for this couple, and I wish you all the best!

Filled Under : Wedding

I’ve pretty much been looking forward to Sam and Kevin’s wedding since their awesome ComicCon engagement session almost exactly a year ago. As a bride, Sam was very committed to making sure that the theme of their wedding reflected both of them. Since they are a couple who loves all things sci-fi, fantasy and bookish, this meant that they incorporated lots of geeky references into their wedding decor and attire. From the Lego figurines of various comic book heroes on every boutonnière and the bride’s bouquet (Aquaman for him; Wonder Woman for her), to a similarly themed Wonder Woman garter to centerpieces showcasing books and themes the couple loves (from Little House on the Prairie to Sailor Moon and everything in between), all of the details were personal, meaningful and just a little bit whimsical.

The bride and groom didn’t know it, but when they were 13 and 14, they stood just a few feet away from each other on the concert risers as they performed in a select County Chorus. A few years later when they started dating, a conversation about music led to them checking the old concert program, and there they were, their names side by side since their last names fall so close to each other alphabetically. Everyone thought that Sam going upstate to college would mean that they would go their separate ways, but it only took one fight for Kevin to realize, in his words, “I couldn’t live without this girl.” They made up, and he started saving up for her engagement ring right then and there.

Sam and Kevin truly make each other happy. He calms and soothes her. She inspires him. Together, they’re so in sync that they dance like they’ve been taking lessons. (They haven’t.) I loved all the ways they showed their love for each other on their wedding day, from the way she was so eager to see him that she practically ran to their meeting spot for their first look in her red high heels to the way Kevin wept with joy when he saw her moments later. Hours later, at the end of the day, she curled up on Kevin’s lap as the wedding party gathered in the hotel for an after party. After all the wedding planning stress had fallen away, there she was- wrapped up in his arms, perfectly content. That’s the way love is supposed to be.

They are honeymooning now, taking a similar trip to one my husband and I took last year right before I shot the engagement session. They are flying into London and driving around Wales, among other places, in part because they want to do the Dr Who Experience in Cardiff. We went last year when it was still Matt Smith and loved it. I know how great the Welsh countryside is, how you come around a winding corner of a road and- boom- there’s a castle. London is a city for people who love theater and art. They are probably having the best time, and I can only hope checking this sneak peek from where they next find WiFi makes their honeymoon just a little more magical. Enjoy!

SAMKEVWEDBLOG01

SAMKEVWEDBLOG02

SAMKEVWEDBLOG03

SAMKEVWEDBLOG04

SAMKEVWEDBLOG05

SAMKEVWEDBLOG06

SAMKEVWEDBLOG07

SAMKEVWEDBLOG08

SAMKEVWEDBLOG09

SAMKEVWEDBLOG10

SAMKEVWEDBLOG11

SAMKEVWEDBLOG12

SAMKEVWEDBLOG13

SAMKEVWEDBLOG14

SAMKEVWEDBLOG15

SAMKEVWEDBLOG16

SAMKEVWEDBLOG17

SAMKEVWEDBLOG18

SAMKEVWEDBLOG19

SAMKEVWEDBLOG20

SAMKEVWEDBLOG21

SAMKEVWEDBLOG22

SAMKEVWEDBLOG23

SAMKEVWEDBLOG24

SAMKEVWEDBLOG25

SAMKEVWEDBLOG26

SAMKEVWEDBLOG27

SAMKEVWEDBLOG28

SAMKEVWEDBLOG29

SAMKEVWEDBLOG30

SAMKEVWEDBLOG31

SAMKEVWEDBLOG32

SAMKEVWEDBLOG33

SAMKEVWEDBLOG34

SAMKEVWEDBLOG35

SAMKEVWEDBLOG36

SAMKEVWEDBLOG37

SAMKEVWEDBLOG38

SAMKEVWEDBLOG39

SAMKEVWEDBLOG40

SAMKEVWEDBLOG41

SAMKEVWEDBLOG42

SAMKEVWEDBLOG43

SAMKEVWEDBLOG44

SAMKEVWEDBLOG45

SAMKEVWEDBLOG46

SAMKEVWEDBLOG47

SAMKEVWEDBLOG48

SAMKEVWEDBLOG49

SAMKEVWEDBLOG50

SAMKEVWEDBLOG51

SAMKEVWEDBLOG52

SAMKEVWEDBLOG53

SAMKEVWEDBLOG54

SAMKEVWEDBLOG55

SAMKEVWEDBLOG56

SAMKEVWEDBLOG57

SAMKEVWEDBLOG58

SAMKEVWEDBLOG59

SAMKEVWEDBLOG60

SAMKEVWEDBLOG61

SAMKEVWEDBLOG62

SAMKEVWEDBLOG63

SAMKEVWEDBLOG64

SAMKEVWEDBLOG65

SAMKEVWEDBLOG66

SAMKEVWEDBLOG67

SAMKEVWEDBLOG68

SAMKEVWEDBLOG69

SAMKEVWEDBLOG70

SAMKEVWEDBLOG71

SAMKEVWEDBLOG72

SAMKEVWEDBLOG73

SAMKEVWEDBLOG74

SAMKEVWEDBLOG75

SAMKEVWEDBLOG76

SAMKEVWEDBLOG77

SAMKEVWEDBLOG78

SAMKEVWEDBLOG79

Filled Under : Celebration , Wedding

134