Kathleen and John happened to meet on Valentine’s Day. And so when it came to planning their wedding, the couple naturally drew inspiration from the passionate, enchanting setting of A Midsummer’s Night Dream. The two, who were set up by a mutual friend, knew they wanted an outdoor space near New York City—but without the city backdrop. Tucked away in the heart of the Bronx, they discovered a lush, sprawling escape from the hustle and bustle of city life: the New York Botanical Garden. For Kathleen, a financial consultant for Ernst & Young, and John, a VP at Goldman Sachs, the gardens offered the beautiful, nature-filled atmosphere that they desired.
Surrounded by the stunning, verdant greenery of the garden, the two declared their vows beneath a columned archway covered with delicate vines and pink and purple blooms by Laura Remmert Events. Carrying a bouquet of white and orange ranunculi, the bride walked down the cobblestone aisle in a stunning Vera Wang dress with lace details, paired with sparkling silver shoes by Christian Louboutin. For her “something old,” she wore a Cartier bracelet that belonged to her mother; her “something borrowed” and “something blue” were a sparkling pair of sapphire earrings lent to the bride by her matron of honor. Her bridesmaids wore Jim Hjelm cocktail dresses in a shade of deep blue. The groom donned a handsome suit by Ralph Lauren Black Label, while his groomsmen paired black suits with Ferragamo ties gifted by John.
Following the ceremony, the couple celebrated with friends and family at the elegant Garden Terrace Room. Airy windows offered garden views, and twinkling chandeliers and hand-painted murals set a sophisticated scene for the reception. Bright floral centerpieces designed by Bowman Dahl—bursting with shades of purples, pinks, greens and ivories, all carefully arranged in vintage-style glassware—were inspired by the show-stopping flower walls of Christian Dior’s Autumn/Winter 2012 couture show.Intimate details made the big day all the more memorable. Guests sipped on two specialty cocktails: a classic Manhattan and the Suncatcher, a sparkling concoction of champagne, strawberries and mint. With Charles St. Paul Band taking the stage, the couple had their first dance to “Can’t Take My Eyes Off Of You” by Frankie Valli, and Louis Armstrong’s “What a Wonderful World” played during the cake cutting. Kathleen and John also exchanged gifts to mark their union: she gifted the groom a handsome Rolex watch, and he surprised his bride with a diamond band to wear with her wedding band. For future brides, Kathleen had some sage advice to share: “Not to worry too much in advance about the smaller details on the day of. Don’t sweat the small stuff. On the big day it will not matter and you will be mostly focused on spending time with all your friends and family and dancing!”Credits: Photographer: Catherine Hall, Catherine Hall Studios | Planner: Laura Remmert of Laura Remmert Events | Ceremony Venue: The New York Botanical Garden | Reception Venue: The New York Botanical Garden | Dress Designer: Vera Wang | Groom’s Wardrobe Designer: Ralph Lauren Black Label | Shoe Designer for Bride: Christian Louboutin | Shoe Designer for Groom: Ferragamo | Bridesmaids Dresses: Jim Hjelm | Bride’s Jewelry and Accessories: Cartier | Designer(s) for wedding bands: John Paradiso | Designer for engagement ring: John Paradiso | Groom’s Accessories: Brooks Brothers | Hair: Sachiko Yanase | Makeup: Sachiko Yanase | Invitations: William Arthur Wedding Paper Goods | Table numbers by Venamour; all others by Sweet Stuff Designs on Etsy | Officiant: Father Noel Clarke | Florist: Bowman Dahl | Caterer: Stephen Starr Events | Cake Designer: Lulu Cakes | Rentals: Photo booth from Mashbooths | Hotel: Waldorf Astoria