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Christy Cassano-Meyer is here with another super fun Portland wedding! The bride on their venue: “Holocene was a no-brainer for us. It was in our budget, already beautiful decorated, equipped with all the tables and chairs we needed. It also had great natural lighting, a full bar, photo booth, sound system and DJ equipment, wonderful staff, everything!”
Guests (and the bride and groom!) enjoyed tacos from the Taco Pedaler, and two fun signature cocktails: ”The Meg” (St Germain, yellow Chartreuse and Prosessco) and “The Dan” (blended whiskey, Galiano, Punt e Mes).
SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE DETAILS FROM THIS PLAYFUL PORTLAND WEDDING.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? Dan: All the things that made me fall in love with Meg and still inspire me. I wanted every instance of our wedding to represent how perfect I think Meg is. // Meg: Dan and I were inspired by our love of all things vintage in-combination with our new home in Portland. We found a perfect balance between retro and modern, classy and casual.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day?Dan: If I had to pick one moment, I’d say the second I heard our processional come on. I had been dreaming of it for months! // Meg: When Dan and I were outside getting our tacos. It started to drizzle. But just a drop or two, not a full on rain. It was so Portland perfect – and a sign of good luck!
Did you include any traditions in your wedding?Although our ceremony was mostly secular, we chose to include the Jewish tradition of the breaking of the glass. It serves as a reminder of the fragile nature of life and symbolizes the shattering of the old and beginning of the new. And it’s also a crowd pleaser. Mazel Tov!
What was the best advice you received as a bride? To be prepared and accept that even after months of tedious preparations not everything will go, or look, exactly as planned, but that doesn’t mean it won’t still be perfect in the end.
What advice do you have for other brides? Invest in a photographer! The day goes by so fast and you can’t be twenty places at once. I’m still looking at our photos daily and finding new bits that I hadn’t noticed before. I love looking at the photos that captured moments only Dan saw. I knew where I was at during that time, and now I can see where he was too. Those are my favorites.
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? Since I’m from Connecticut and Dan’s from New Mexico this was most of our guests’ first time in Portland and first time meeting each other. Everyone was just so happy to be on vacation and celebrating. It was incredible to have everyone together in an unbiased location, and it may never happen like that again.
The story of Bob and Liz’s courtship plays like a movie montage. You can just picture it overlaid with a romantic, lyrical song. They meet, become friends within a big group of people just out of college, and one by one, everyone else fades away until they are the only two left. Liz explains it matter-of-factly: “We could never quite shake the other person.”
Liz and Bob met when they were both working for a non-profit helping children living in poverty; Liz was a senior in college and Bob was a Vista volunteer in legal services. The two became friends and would hang out in big groups of people. When Liz graduated, the two ended up living around the corner from one another and found themselves spending more and more time together. They dated other people, but those relationships never stuck.
Eventually, their friendship evolved into a relationship, although neither of the two can remember an actual first date! And their relationship eventually evolved into a marriage – as Bob says, “It became obvious this was someone I could spend the rest of my life with.” Meanwhile, Liz was slightly more dubious. “Up until the day before we were married, I didn’t think I could do it,” Liz said, explaining that she was nervous about losing her aspirations of being a strong, independent, adventurous woman. She realized, though, that “Bob was a perfect boyfriend because he encouraged me to do those things. It was never a question that we loved each other.”
And so they tied the knot, and thirty years later are still at it. They were married in a low-key ceremony in a local church (a fiddler played jigs and reels for their walk back down the aisle!), followed by a reception in Liz’s parents’ backyard.
Liz says they weren’t given advice prior to their marriage, but rather learned by example. “The lessons we learned about marriage we learned in the households we grew up in.” Liz’s parents have been married 68 years, and Bob’s mother has been a widow longer than she was married. “She just never wanted to marry anyone else. She loved her husband.”
With their own kids, they tend to show by example rather than prescribing marriage advice, but they do have a little advice to share with newlyweds. Liz suggests, “Be very communicative and honest about where you’re coming from at all times.” To which Bob adds, “[It] means you don’t always hear the stuff you want to hear.” Hard conversations aside, Bob says he’s found marriage overall to be an easy task. “I’ve never felt like marriage was hard work.” And long may it be so!
SNAPSHOT SUBMISSIONS Do you know a married couple whose relationship you admire? Or maybe you’re married and want to share your words of wisdom! We’re now accepting submissions from couples who have been married for ten years or longer. Email Emily at email@example.com with your first names, how long you’ve been married, and a few sentences about why you’d like to be interviewed for our Snapshot of a Marriage series.
This beautiful Southern wedding is full of lush peonies, classic details, and an incredibly romantic story about the venue: “We chose to have our reception at the Pine House because it is a historic family home to the both of us. Bettis’ family first owned the house in 1858 until my family acquired the house during the Depression. Bettis and I had never met until my debut in 2008, but our families knew each other for years. His father wrote a special book about the history of the Pine House and we had them as favors for all of our guests. We couldn’t think of a better place to start our lives together.”
“I have always loved peonies, garden roses, and hydrangeas – my grandmother is a master gardener and she spoiled me with a fine taste in flowers at a very young age,” says Melissa. “A favorite part of the evening was walking outside and being overwhelmed with the scent of peonies. I’m not sure I’ve ever been to a wedding where you could truly smell the flowers. It was incredible. Scent triggers the memory before any other sense – and I love that every time I smell a peony, my wedding day comes to mind.”
The emblem on the cover of the ceremony programs also appeared on the wedding cake.
When thinking about the details of the day, Melissa says, “I knew that I wanted something soft, blush, elegant and romantic. Something traditional, timeless, and Southern – something that I believe would reflect myself.”
Says the bride, “The private dinner was one of my favorite elements of the day. We used our own china, silver and crystal that we received as wedding gifts and my grandmother’s beautiful vintage French lace tablecloth. It was our first dinner together in our new home and something that we will always cherish.”
SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE DETAILS FROM THIS PEONY-THEMED WEDDING.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day?Walking down the stairs to see my groom-to-be. Walking into the house, through the peony arbor around the front door, awaiting a peach Bellini, and seeing everything come together so beautifully was truly a dream come true.
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? I think our entire wedding entrapped southern tradition, elegance and beauty as a whole. I like to think we took both of our families’ traditions and culture into account as we planned our big day.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? The best advice I received as a bride would be to take a minute to stop and look at everything – to step away from the crowd and take it all in. I was truly able to see and remember how magnificent and beautiful everything was.
What advice do you have for other brides? My advice for other brides would be to not get wrapped up in all of the little details. Once the big stuff has been decided, have fun with everything else -and if something happens how you may not have expected or preferred – oh well! Having a wedding planner was the best thing I could have ever done – it took away so much of the unnecessary stress so that I could enjoy everything to the fullest. Enjoy being a bride. Wear sequins and a tutu because you can! I did!
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? I loved how all of the bridesmaids came over to the house the morning of the wedding to get ready. I spent the night with my maid of honor the night before my wedding day in my own bed at my new home. That day we all talked, laughed, drank a mimosa, had breakfast and lunch together, and got our hair and makeup done at the house. We were just hanging out and it made me so relaxed to have everyone there with me having fun. It was truly special to wake up and see everything come together right in front of my eyes in my own backyard. It is something I will always remember. The final product was unforgettable and absolutely breathtaking. My dream come true.
Says the bride, “Although I was born and raised in Tampa, Florida, Ryan and I met at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and it’s really become a special place for us. It only seemed fitting to tie the knot at Gesu Church on our Alma Mater’s campus, with our closest family and friends present.”
Lauren’s advice to other brides? “Take time for just the two of you to enjoy your wedding day. Sneak away and spend a few minutes together here and there if you can. It’s so true what they say, the day flies by so quickly!”
SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE PHOTOS OF THIS ELEGANT MILWAUKEE WEDDING.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? Ryan and I love simple elegance. We wanted a warm and inviting atmosphere where our guests could relax, eat a wonderful meal, put their dancing shoes on, and enjoy the best party we’re ever going to throw!
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? My best memory of the day is walking down the aisle on my dad’s arm and seeing all of our guests who had come to celebrate with us. Ryan looked so handsome and he had the biggest smile on his face. I couldn’t wait to be standing up there with him. It’s truly a walk I’ll never forget.
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? We decided to stick to a few traditions when it came to our big day. We didn’t see each other until I walked down the aisle, which definitely added some suspense and excitement to ceremony. Also, I carried my grandmother’s wedding handkerchief in my pocket (yes, my dress had pockets!) as my something old.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? Honestly, the best advice I received from was from my sister (and maid of honor). Eight months before our wedding we were learned of a festival occurring in Milwaukee the same weekend we had our wedding planned. No hotels were available in the entire city to accommodate our guests! Our options were to push it off for another year when the church and venue were available, or move it four months earlier than we had planner when there was another opening. My sister told me to go for it and plan the wedding early, “Don’t wait for the other venues to be ready next year, you’re both ready to be married now.” This was the boldest decision we could make, and we succeeded in uprooting our wedding and re-planning it in a four month time frame. It still was the best day of our lives and I’d do it over in a heartbeat.