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.
Back in 2018, Christina and Tony were in Napa, celebrating her father’s 60th birthday with family. They were enjoying all that wine country had to offer—touring vineyards, tasting various varieties and vintages, and enjoying the California climate—and at one such winery, they went outside to take photos when Tony got down on bended knee and proposed. After the shock of what happened wore off, Christina said, “yes,” and almost immediately, they began to plan their wedding.
Christina works in the events industry (she used to work at an event space, assisted a floral designer, and now works at a rental company), so she understood that if she wanted to have her pick of vendors, starting early would be best. Always knowing that October would be their wedding month since it’s a beautiful time of year in Maryland, they chose October 3, 2020, as their wedding date. Even with a COVID-19 reschedule to October 8, 2021, their wedding took place on a stunning fall day.
And reschedule aside, one thing was for sure: the wedding would be a black and white wedding with a twist. The moody, modern, glam, and industrial wedding was inspired by the bride’s engagement ring, which boasts both black and white diamonds. Christina used the extra time leading up to the rescheduled celebration scouring the Internet and social media to find inspiring ways to bring the day’s design together.
Baltimore was the place the bride and groom had lived together the longest and where they bought their first home, so it held significance. It was also a central location for friends and family. Wanting a raw, industrial space that could be transformed for their big day, Christina and Tony found that in The Winslow. They were really excited to come up with unique ideas for the blank canvas that the event space was.
“I wanted guests to have a full experience and create a complete atmosphere. To this day, all of our family and friends said that the wedding had this amazing vibe that felt classy, elegant, yet cozy and of course industrial. I'm so happy we were able to transform the space into exactly what my vision was. When we entered the room for the reveal it was literally like someone saw the image I had in my head and made it real life. Working with such an amazing vendor team made that possible and it was so fun to collaborate with everyone!” —Christina, bride
Wedding Planner & Caterer
Even with her background in all things weddings, Christina knew she needed help putting her dream day together. Her first move was to hire Lemon & Lime Event Design to handle event management and consult on the overall design of the celebration.
“Christina and her mom were doing venue visits while we were at the same venue with a client. She recognized my voice from Instagram stories and came up to ask if we were Lemon & Lime. It was hilarious! We bonded instantly and the rest is history! We absolutely love working with fellow wedding industry couples for their wedding—they know the ins and outs, pricing, and most importantly to us, they want something different that they haven't seen 100 times before.” —Katey Clark, Lemon & Lime Event Design cofounder
“I obviously was so beyond excited to be finally planning and designing my own wedding, but I felt a lot of pressure from family and friends to make it this epic event. Luckily it totally was, but I found it difficult to get my thoughts together at times and that’s when I would turn to Lemon & Lime and we would talk it out and come up with some amazing ideas together. It was also very important to me to get everything done as soon as possible so that as the wedding got closer I could relax (as much as possible). I highly recommend getting as much as the big stuff out of the way, especially now.” —Christina, bride
Christina kept the ball rolling booking more of her core vendor team, starting with the wedding caterer. She wanted to get as much done as soon as possible so she could enjoy the wedding planning and take time focusing on the little details that would make it special.
Food was important to the couple and their families. Working closely with the team at Linwoods, they came up with the perfect menu that paid homage to their backgrounds. A pierogi for Tony and his Polish heritage, a croquette for Christina’s Spanish culture, and pasta as the primo piatto for her Italian roots. Guests chose from four entreés, but Christina made the request that Tony would get a little bit of everything, which the catering team made happen.
“I know many brides say they don’t have time to eat on their wedding day, but I made time, and I’m so glad I did because our food was fantastic!” —Christina, bride
Wedding Florist & Production
At the start of her engagement, Christina was working at Crimson & Clover Floral Design and knew she wanted designer and owner Amy McManus to do the wedding flowers. Having worked in floral design herself, Christina wanted to prioritize flowers in particular.
“Amy read my mind and exceeded all of my expectations for our flowers. We had three different centerpieces for the tables. The head tables were filled with candles and florals trailing down the center of the table, and the guest tables had either a grouping of candles and florals or a floral centerpiece that looked like it was growing from the middle of the table. We also had two installations—one behind the sweetheart table and one behind the ceremony. I had seen florals attached to grids and knew they would tie in with the industrial vibe while also giving a unique spin on the typical ceremony backdrop. I wanted our guests to be wowed by our flowers!” —Christina, bride
At the same time, Revolution Event Design & Production was brought on to help with production and lighting.
“Instead of hanging the bistro lights horizontally, we had them strung vertically to frame the two head tables on either side of the dance floor. The head tables and sweetheart table were custom made to look like plaster from Social Supply and that made the design for the head tables that much more unique. For the ceremony, we built a raised aisle and stage that was completely covered in a metallic vinyl and we also matched that in the reception for the dance floor. This perfectly reflected the light and created the utmost romantic ambience. Also for the ceremony, we had our guests seated on three sides of the stage so that it would create a more intimate feeling.” —Christina, bride
Wedding Photographer & Band
Christina and Tony took their time to find the perfect wedding photographer for them. Tony is a photojournalist, so this decision carried a bit of extra weight. Naomi Cataldo of Urban Row Photography was someone both he and Christina felt great about.
“It was about finding someone I felt comfortable with and could trust with taking photos. She has a natural talent for capturing the moment and making it look natural and that was really important to me. It’s a big task to choose a photographer because it is one of the only tangible memories you have from your wedding day. Naomi and her amazing team captured the wedding perfectly.” —Tony, groom
“We had a strong personal connection and that made it easy to choose her to capture our wedding day. Naomi really felt like family. She made me feel 1000% comfortable in front of the camera. And I was so excited for her to see every detail come together, because I knew how much she would appreciate it.” —Christina, bride
The couple turned to Washington Talent Agency for their wedding band Onyx, whose sound was incredible and kept the dance floor packed all night.
Wedding Videographer & Officiant
Planning a wedding during a worldwide pandemic came with highs and lows, and even thoughts of eloping. But in the end, being able to safely gather and celebrate their industrial wedding was worth it all. And thanks to Shutter & Sound Films, the couple had another way to relive it all over again (and again).
“Our video captured our day perfectly and we love to watch it over and over.” —Christina, bride
And thanks to Rev. Michelle of Ceremony Officiants, they were legally married. From the start, the couple loved her relaxed style and personal approach.
“We still receive compliments on her ceremony. Not to mention, she has the most calming voice ever. She really made us feel like the ceremony was about our relationship and our love. She also had us each say five things we loved about each other and neither of us knew beforehand. It was a nice surprise and a way to personalize it without having to read our own vows.” —Christina, bride
Wedding Specialty Rentals & Production
Social Supply Design & Décor was the next vendor to join the wedding team, as a rental partner but also a production company who cooked up some exciting details, like the seating display that showcased the couple’s collection of vintage cameras (and Tony’s background as a photojournalist) and some custom signage. Many of the pieces they provided added unique elements and textures too, like the metallic ceremony aisle, white plaster tables, and charcoal gray draping.
Wedding Hair & Makeup
Brushed Beauty came at the recommendation of Christina’s friend, who had used them for her own wedding. Christina clicked with Heather and Dani, who did her hair and makeup, respectively, and she loved her trial. She trusted Heather so much that on the day of the wedding she changed her hairstyle plans—scrapping the bun they’d intended and going for a ponytail instead. She loved the end result and how gorgeous her bridesmaids and family members looked too.
When they decided to reschedule, the couple was thankful everyone who had already been contracted was still on board with the new date. A friend of Christina’s with a laser cutting business (Modern Savage Design) whipped up “change the dates,” so guests stayed in the loop. And then there was a pause in planning until it was time to start on the invitations. That’s when TPD Design House came into the picture. They were the only vendor new to the Lemon & Lime team, but everyone enjoyed the experience of working together and the end results knocked it out of the park.
“When designing our invitations with TPD, I wanted them to reflect the glam and unique nature of the wedding and start tying in personal details. I decided to create a modern painting in the colors of our wedding (black, white, ivory, and copper) that TPD could use as the liner for the invitations. Working with them was incredible and I believe they really captured the vibe of the wedding. It was very important to me that the invitations set the tone for guests of the wedding and we received so many compliments! The same painting was used to make a sign that said ‘It’s Friday I’m in Love,’ which was created as a way to make light of the fact that our original date was a Saturday and we moved to a Friday when we had to postpone. This was something I originally was not happy about but I soon realized it meant we had the rest of the weekend to celebrate with our friends and family after the wedding. Fridays are definitely the new Saturdays!” —Christina, bride
Another nod to the revised wedding date came in the form of bar signage that read “We’ve waited 1081 days for this—party accordingly.” While the couple always wanted a longer engagement and welcomed the two years in between proposal and I-dos, the bonus year presented a challenge. The couple tried to stay as positive during that time frame as possible, enjoying their “fiancé/fiancee time,” and then come wedding day, played up the long wait and anticipation in a cheeky way.
Wedding Rentals & Calligrapher
Rentals and calligraphy fell into place next, as the couple worked with Social Supply Design & Décor on some rental pieces (in addition to the custom elements they designed and built), and also borrowed items from The Coveted Co., Pretty Little Wedding Co., Table Manners DC, and Nüage Designs, Inc. While working with multiple rental partners can create additional work, it’s sometimes necessary to get the exact look desired, and certainly paid off when everything came together at this industrial wedding.
Lynn Cipollone of Lynny C to tackle the hand-penned items, like the exposed film strips coming out of the empty film canisters, which Christina painted matte black as part of the personalized seating display.
“We knew from the very beginning that we wanted to do something unique and personal to the couple for the escort display. We toyed around with a lot of ideas since they're such interesting people but kept coming back to Tony's love for photography and videography. The idea to use the film negatives and canisters came from wanting to balance the vintage, romantic aspect of film photography with the modern look and feel of the wedding. We wanted it to be sleek, sexy but also nostalgic at the same time.” —Yen Southwood, event producer
Wedding Audio Guestbook, Photobooth, & Ceremony Musicians
The final moves made by the couple brought FéteFone—an audio guest book that allows guests to leave the couple a message to listen to later on—and Booth-o-rama for guests to pop in to take black-and-white pictures and to create digital GIFs too.
Canterbury Strings were added to the vendor team to perform at the start of the celebration. They played some songs from Christina’s family’s favorite musical—Phantom of the Opera—and other soft, instrumental numbers as guests arrived. Come time for the actual ceremony, “happier and lighter” songs were requested to make the beginning of the festivities as lively as possible. The bride and groom chose “Here Comes the Sun” by The Beatles for the processional, and the father of the bride selected “Over the Rainbow” from The Wizard of Oz for when he and Christina made their way toward Tony. It was not only a beautiful melody, but a meaningful way for the bride to honor her late grandmother, as it’s the most memorable song from her favorite movie. Another Beatles hit “All You Need is Love” bookended the service when the newlyweds recessed up the aisle.