A groom and bride sit at the singular reception table at their art museum wedding at MASS MoCa.
BEHIND THE SCENES

The Making of a Unique Art Museum Wedding for Yareni and Benjamin

North Adams, Massachusetts
BY SHIRA SAVADA / 11 09 22
Photo by IVASH Studio

Every wedding vendor team is created a little differently. In this series we explore how and why each couple selected the right wedding vendor team for their wedding day.

Benjamin initially planned on proposing to Yareni at a cocktail bar in New York City as a nod to their love for craft spirits. But it was the early days of the pandemic and he was unsure when the bars would reopen, he instead commissioned a custom cocktail menu from her favorite artist, Mia Cross, made the drinks himself, and popped the question during a beach picnic on the Boston waterfront.

Like many engaged couples of the time, Ben and Yari waited a while for the public health landscape to improve before they began planning their wedding day. Although some initial conversations took place, it wasn’t until the vaccines started rolling out that they made any moves. But they quickly set a date (May 14, 2022) and location, and took it from there.

DECISION 1

Wedding Venue

Because they went to grad school and worked in Boston, the bride and groom wanted to choose a venue in the area. Plus, getting married in the Northeast made sense as many of their friends and family reside in New York City (where Yari grew up) and New England. Both history lovers, Yari and Ben sought out a space with an industrial aesthetic (exposed brick was on their wish list) and a rich past. Not finding what they wanted in downtown Boston, they expanded their search radius and immediately fell in love with MASS MoCa’s history, scale, artwork, and unique look. 

Following an intimate Catholic ceremony in Stockbridge, at St. Joseph’s Church, a more personalized ceremony for all 120 guests officiated by one of the bride’s law school friends took place in the museum’s Spencer Finch Gallery. Cocktail hour followed in the Prow, and then it was off to the Building 6 South Hall for dinner and Building 6 Event Space for dancing in the former factory-turned-event space.

A pair of newlyweds walk through one of the industrial event spaces used for their art museum wedding.
One long reception table was set in an industrial space with colorful art at a Boston couple's art museum wedding. Greenery and floral hang overhead, with modern black chairs balancing the design below.
DECISION 2

Wedding Planner & Designer

With the date and place secured, the couple then set out to find a wedding planner that could maximize the impact of their unique wedding venue and guide them the rest of the way. They found Pejy Kash Events on Instagram (they had done a wedding at another venue they were considering and Yari and Ben were impressed with his standout design approach) and reached out.

Due to the COVD-19 pandemic, we hadn’t seen many of our friends and family for several years, so beyond the ‘wow’ factor of the gorgeous design, Pejy and his team pulled together, it was a truly emotional experience seeing so many of our loved ones seated together at a single table that spanned more than a hundred feet across the entire gallery space. We continue to hear how amazed our guests were with the reception space design and other carefully planned details throughout our wedding day.”Yari, bride

Light shines through the windows of a gallery space where a unique art museum wedding reception transpired.

When describing Yari and Ben’s wedding, the words that still come to mind are unique, personal, artful, and intentional. These are also the words that inspired the design. We are so incredibly blessed that the majority of our clients give us complete freedom, when it comes to design. They allow us to bring together their dream wedding, from our creative perspective.” —Pejy Kash, planner/designer

Newlyweds excitedly recess up the aisle at the conclusion of their art museum wedding ceremony.
A newlywed couple share a first dance during the reception of their art museum wedding.
DECISION 3

Wedding Photographer

The next vendor considered was their wedding photographer. Pejy suggested Volodymyr Ivash of IVASH Studio, and after looking at his portfolio, the couple loved his classic, timeless, and editorial style of wedding photography. They also appreciated how professional and accommodating he was during their first meeting and throughout the planning process.

A portrait of a bride and groom between the ceremony and the reception of their art museum wedding, which took place at MASS MoCA.
DECISION 4

Wedding Makeup Artist

While the bride and groom didn’t have traditional wedding parties, they both had a small group of friends that played special roles throughout the day. Yari’s friends donned pink and joined the bride for hair and makeup services, the latter of which were provided by Makeup by Kai.

A close-up portrait of a bride in a strapless wedding dress with stunning soft waves and a natural makeup application, smiling during her art museum wedding day.
Instead of bridesmaids, this bride asked her close friends to wear pink and play a special part in her art museum wedding day.
DECISION 5

Wedding Florist

PKE tapped one of their frequent collaborators—Ivie Joy—to design the decor and flowers for the wedding, which included quite a range of impactful moments within a vibrant color palette, all for very deliberate reasons.

“We wanted floral that would mimic, as well as complement, the art at the museum. The florals in the ceremony space were designed to replicate the meandering path of the lighting art installation above. The colors for the reception were chosen to complete the mural that took up the majority of one of the walls. The idea was to create an installation that looked as if it, on its own, belonged in the museum as an art piece.” —Dwayne Crowder, director of operations at Pejy Kash Events

Variagated purple sweet peas and a few red ranunculus made up a colorful bridal bouquet at an art museum wedding.
An installation of lights above the ceremony space was mimicked in the florals along the aisle, which lead to a flower-filled corner where the couple would marry during their art museum wedding ceremony.
One corner of an industrial event space was covered with flowers and greenery to provide the backdrop for an art museum wedding ceremony.
Clusters of small floral arrangements dotted the long table of an art museum wedding, which was designed with an abundance of color.
DECISION 6

Wedding Caterer

Food abounded at this late spring soirée thanks to Mezze Catering & Events, one of three exclusive caterers for the wedding venue.

“We decided to go with them given the fact that they are the best caterer in the Berkshires, have many local farm-to-table options, and have extensive experience working in the unique space that is MASS MoCA. We are both foodies and were impressed by how fresh and delicious their offerings were.” —Yari, bride

Several passed hors d’oeuvres made the rounds during cocktail hour (like lobster rolls and duck tasso) before guests sat down for dinner. The meal began with a beet salad and local bread with herbed butter, and the main course offered lamb chops marinated with confit garlic and rosemary, as well as roast chicken with confit lemon and delicious seasonal sides.

As the bride and groom love making cocktails and exploring cocktail bars, serving signature sips was imperative—and was done so from a statement bar filled with fresh flowers.

Greenery and dripping floral hung above the long table at an art museum wedding reception, which had a modern design incorporating black rental pieces and art-inspired menus.
A transparent bar was filled with fresh flowers and used to serve beverages during the reception of an art museum wedding.
DECISION 7

Wedding DJ & Ceremony Musician

A DJ from Elegant Music Group was hired next, and during the reception he played a combination of classics, Latin music (bachata and merengue in particular), 90s R&B and pop, club hits from the 2000s, reggae and afrobeat, and more recent Top 40 songs that catered to the diverse group of guests.

A DJ plays music under an installation of soft pink flowers at an art museum wedding.
A happy groom and bride, surrounded by their loved ones, dance the night away during their art museum wedding.
All of the guests at the art museum wedding danced as a DJ spun music.

For the ceremony, Edward W. Hardy played a combination of old classics and modern hits on cello and violin, including songs by The Temptations, Elvis Presley, Sixpence None The Richer, and Beyonce. And after they were declared newlyweds, Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered” played in celebration.

A bride and groom kiss during their art museum wedding ceremony.
DECISION 8

Wedding Rentals & Vintage Car

Wanting to anchor the color palette with black items that would translate well in an art setting, rentals were selected from Luxe Event Rentals—including a showstopper dining chair that added just the right amount of visual interest to the space.

A colorful piece of art anchored the reception space at an art museum wedding, where one long table ran parallel to the long wall.
Dark plates, light flatware, and modern stemware made for a unique place setting at this art museum wedding.

As another stylish addition to the day, the couple rented a vintage Mustang from Rent the Classics. It was a great bridge from the classic church environment to the more modern evening ceremony and reception. Before driving it to their art museum wedding and arriving in style, they took advantage of the car by posing with it for some portraits.

A bride and groom pose by a rented vintage car that they used to get to their art museum wedding.
DECISION 9

Wedding Stationer

Pejy approached Dami Okuboyejo of By Dami Studios to design and produce invitations and additional pieces that fit the overall design and the venue. It was an opportunity to have fun and make something truly one-of-a-kind.

“When PKE reached out to us, they told us the couple owns a particular Mia Cross painting and wanted it to serve as our inspiration. With it being a modern art museum wedding, we knew we could really get creative. We decided to design a mod invitation suite in the colorway and characteristics of the painting. The artist plays with lots of lines, curves, and muted fall tones. For the envelope liner, we opted for paint splashes as a nod to the artistic inspiration and location. And for the invite itself, we separated each color and pasted them onto a clear acrylic to give the illusion of floating. This suite featured several forms of printing like copper foiled text, bind embossed patterns, and screen printing. We carried the floating idea and curves over to the personalized menus—which featured screen-printed circular rings (a prominent part of Mia Cross' art).” —Dami Okuboyejo, stationer

A colorful wedding invitation inspired by a piece of art the couple has, which was fitting of an art museum wedding.
Orange spirals adorned the acrylic menus at an art museum wedding.
DECISION 10

Wedding Cake Maker

When it came time to choose a wedding cake, Yari and Ben turned to Mamie Bougitte Cakes. The three-tier, square confection drew inspiration from the museum’s distinct aesthetic, with the shape and impressions on the exterior reflecting the venue’s worn bricks, and the floral adornments mirroring the day’s flower arrangements.

After a tasting in the Berkshires, the couple couldn’t choose just one flavor combination and ultimately selected a vanilla bean cake with raspberry jam and rosewater buttercream, a lavender scented cake with lemon curd filling and vanilla bean buttercream, and a brown butter cake with an amaretto soak and caramel hazelnut spread.

A three-tier wedding cake decorated with red and blue flowers and leaf impressions made a statement at an art museum wedding.
A bride and groom feed each other cake during their art museum wedding reception at MASS MoCA.
DECISION 11

Wedding Hair Stylist

To round out the vendor team, hair stylist Gabbi Jeanne was hired to do two different looks to pair with the two different dresses the bride wore—one to the church and one for the larger ceremony and celebration.

For her intimate church ceremony, a bride wore a full ponytail and a caped wedding dress.
For her art museum wedding, a bride went with loose waves and a side part that showed off her Oscar de la Renta strapless wedding dress.
A bride and groom laugh during their flower-filled art museum wedding ceremony.
An Industrial Wedding for Yareni and Benjamin
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