Interview with our STUNNING couple, Monica + Dave:
How did you meet? Dave and I both went to St. Francis Prep, a private Caholic school in Queens, NY. He was a baseball and basketball player and I was a cheerleader. Although our love story didn’t quite start when we were both in school together, and I never had the chance to cheer him on at a game (until our big day), we had our eyes on one another for a long time. We were eventually introduced by a mutual friend, went on one date and we knew that we had found our other half.
What attracted you most to your husband/wife? Monica: At first I couldn’t help but notice his big light brown eyes and his crooked smile, but it was his great personality, sense of humor, confidence and beautiful heart that made him so different from everyone else in the world. No one can make me smile the way he does.
Dave: Monica’s smile was the first thing I noticed about her. Once we really started spending time together I realized what a beautiful person she was inside and out. She has a fantastic personality, is extremely caring and truly has been the greatest.
How did he propose? Dave and I were going to Beaver Creek in Colorado for my cousin’s wedding. The whole weekend was amazing. We spent it celebrating with friends and family, exploring and enjoying the beautiful scenery. The day after the wedding, Dave mentioned that some friends from work had recommended a nearby hiking trail in Vail. It was a hidden spot located in the middle of the Rockies, Piney River Ranch, which was only reachable by a single dirt road. After a 45 minute scenic drive and a brief encounter with some loggers, we reached an expansive lake between the mountains. We got out of the car and began to walk, Dave then pointed out an area adjacent to the lake where wedding ceremonies are performed. It was so peaceful and serene. We walked by the lake to take in the view and started to talk about how lucky we were to be here and to see this hidden treasure with one another. Dave suggested that we take a picture together. He bent over to reach into his bag and before I knew it he was pulling a small navy blue leather box out of the bag. As he knelt on one knee he began the speech he had rehearsed, but being so overwhelmed with excitement I threw my arms around his neck, kissed him and said, “YES!!!” After a few moments Dave, laughing, stopped to ask if I wanted to see the ring he had worked so hard to design. Then he turned around and signaled to some people hiding behind a tree. He had my father, sister and her boyfriend, Anthony, there to celebrate with us. We then headed over to the lodge to celebrate with some champagne. It was the perfect afternoon.
What inspired your vision for your wedding? Dave and I had searched for the perfect venue for months, a place that would accurately represent who we are. After visiting Battery Gardens we knew that this would be the perfect place to celebrate our love with our family and friends. Battery Gardens is located at the southernmost tip of Manhattan island, where the East and Hudson Rvers meet. Inspired by it’s surroundings and our summertime celebration, we decided to use a flair of chic nautical. Using navy blue and hot pink accents, we chose decorative elements that would compliment the venue. We then worked with a floral designer to create centerpieces that would compliment the evening’s harbor views.
Tell us about finding your venue: Like I said, Dave and I had searched for a few months for the perfect venue. After doing a few obligatory looks at “Halls” we began to look at non-typical wedding locations. We searched from luxury lodges in northern New Jersey to Nautical Bed and Breakfasts in the Hamptons. Once we visited Battery Gardens we were convinced that this was the ideal location for our special day. The level of service, beautiful views and modern nautical elegance was something we couldn’t pass up.
What was your biggest planning challenge? Having worked on corporate events in the tri-state area, I was aware all that decor can do to enhance an event. I enjoy creating unique elements for events, especially anything DIY. After doing much research, I found myself working on so many projects that it was overwhelming. Eventually, I had to filter through my projects and choose which work best for our big day.
What was your favorite design element of your wedding? When it came to decor, I tried to keep uniformity stylistically and in color. I was very aware that overwhelming the space with decor would backfire. The combination of the centerpieces, with the decor/table settings we had created and the lighting balanced well and accomplished the tasteful beauty we had hoped for. We also love the miniature house gift and card holder that my sister had specially made for us, which had our names and wedding date on it. It also turns into a mailbox, which makes it all the more special.
Did you have any DIY details? Being a DIY fanatic and an event planner turns out to be a deadly combination when it comes to planning your own wedding. Here are just a few of the DIY details that we incorporated into our wedding. (FYI, a brides best friend is a site called weddingdivas.com. They have everything you could ever need to give your wedding that personal touch!)
Ribboned Bell Exit Favors
“Just Married” Car Banner
Individual Escort Cards
Table Name Cards
Monogram Crystal Cake Topper
“Mr.” and “Mrs.” Chair banners
Candy Bar Sign and Labels with Ribbon
Candy Bar Jars and Fillings
We also wanted to thank all of our family members for helping us create the perfect day. We could not have done all of this without their tireless help. We love them very very much.
What was the most memorable moment of your wedding day? Monica: By far, the most memorable moment was the moment we said, “I do.” Dave and I were lucky enough to have met at a young age. So when that moment finally that we had talked about so many times came, I felt like there was no one else around, it was just the two of us, taking our vows. I was so excited and overwhelmed. I could never forget how special that moment felt.
Dave: Everything about the day was so memorable, but the most memorable was the moment I saw Monica walk down the aisle. For months I had imagined what her dress would look like and she well exceeded my expectations. She looked absolutely beautiful and I couldn’t wait to finally see her up close on our special day.
Describe your cake: When someone says beauty in simplicity, this is what they mean. Our cake was made of french vanilla and chocolate cake, separated by french creme, covered in off-white fondant. Blue-ribbon adorned the circumference of each layer of the four tier cake. Hot pink gum paste peonies cascaded up the side of the cake, leading to the crystal monogram cake topper. Not only did it look great, but it tasted great too!
How was your experience with your photographers? We loved you both! We never thought that when we were choosing photographers to take our engagement photos in Disney World (over 1,100 miles from home,) that we would have found the perfect wedding photographers too! As soon as we had our photos back, we knew that we could never find anyone else that would capture our day as well as you both would. You both did an amazing job of photographing every minute of our day, while not invading our special moments.
What is next for you and your husband as a couple? Dave and I are just enjoying being married and are looking forward to doing some international travel with friends and family. We love nothing more than exploring new places together. Then it’s onto creating a home and family of our own.
Can you please list your vendors:
Venue: Battery Gardens
Flowers: Andrew Scott Events
Invitations and Save the Dates: Wedding Paper Divas
Videographer: Eric Shader
DJ and Lighting: Andrew Klein-DJ Clockwork, Gotham Events
Special thanks to Laura Medico for doing my hair that morning and throughout the entire humid day.