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 big day.
At the very beginning of 2020, Taylor Phillips proposed to Jeffrey O’Donnell in the middle of the woods in upstate New York. The New York City-based content creators started wedding planning almost immediately, as they already had a specific vision in mind...
They considered some 200+ venues online and checked out nearly a dozen in person. They narrowed it down to one, paid their deposit. But they kept thinking about their engagement, and several months in, they realized that what they were planning just no longer felt right. What did feel right was getting married at exactly the same spot where the proposal took place—somewhere they love to visit and that holds many happy memories for them. So they cancelled their initial wedding plans and made the switch.
Now getting closer to fall, and being mindful of dropping temps, they moved the wedding date up a month to Labor Day weekend of 2021. They would hold their ceremony in the precise location where their proposal unfolded, June Farms, transforming an already beautiful landscape into something that channeled the all-American classic style of Ralph Lauren holiday commercials, and the sexiness and dark moodiness of Tom Ford ads, with a touch of Taylor Swift’s Folklore.
“June Farms is a beautiful farm upstate. It’s one of our favorite places to go to escape the city, and we love taking our dog and just running around the property and staying in their beautiful cabins. Matt, the owner, also became a fast friend to us and is also part of the LGBTQ+ community so we always felt comfortable there.” —Taylor, groom
Wedding Photographer & Videographer
While they had already begun their search for a duo of vendors to document their original wedding day, they quickly moved to solidify their decisions. The social media-savvy pair selected photographer Sarah Sayeed and videographer Joyce Films.
“One of the first decisions we made were photographer and videographer because in our minds, everything was important (venue, florals, design, etc.) but we knew the photos and videos are what we would look back on the most. We found our wedding photographer and videographer on Instagram after getting sucked down a black hole of random people’s weddings. We loved Sarah Sayeed’s photography, how she used color, and just her overall vibe. And for our videographer, all it took was me seeing one wedding teaser by Joyce Films. I was sold. We were going to do whatever we had to do to make sure we got her. We make YouTube videos ourselves, and look back on our videos like home movies, so video content was very important to us. It’s the best way to relive those moments. I think we’ve watched our wedding teaser 100+ times and it just takes us right back to those moments, it’s so special.” —Taylor, groom
Another vendor they’d already booked for wedding 1.0 was Around Town Entertainment: a string quartet for the wedding ceremony, a 10-piece ensemble for the reception, and a DJ for the after-party. Thankfully they were all flexible (and still available) when the date and venue shifted.
When it came time to hire a caterer, the grooms were a bit nervous. Afterall, they live in NYC and are surrounded by amazing food at every turn. Their expectations were high, especially knowing guests often talk about whether the food was good (or bad) at a wedding. But thankfully, June Farms suggested a local option, Mazzone Hospitality, whose menu offerings wowed the couple.
“We were able to build a fully customized menu. We had the most stunning selection of food and everything was truly so good.” —Taylor, groom
Wedding Flowers & Decor
How they found the next addition to their vendor team is quite a story. During the summer of 2020, the grooms were hired to play husbands for a wedding photoshoot. They arrived on location, where everything was set up like a real wedding. The design (courtesy of Josh Spiegel of Birch Event Design) blew them away. Since their initial florist had fallen through, Josh came into their lives at the perfect moment, and he then tapped a lighting vendor (Dynamic Vision) and oversaw rentals (ABC Fabulous Events and Luxe Event Rentals) and a custom dance floor (Bombshell Graphics) to bring it all to fruition.
“We quickly made friends with the owner of Birch, Josh Spiegel. He had his daughters with him and we were making TikToks and just having a great time getting to know each other. We told Josh that we were actually planning our own wedding and we didn’t have anything solidified yet, and he was like ‘We’re working together—I need to do your wedding.’ From then on out we were three peas in a pod.” —Taylor, groom
“Josh and the guys at Dynamic Vision absolutely killed it. We had fairy lights every three inches across the ceiling of the tent. They also dimmed and moved to the music so it was insane. We curtained off the entire tent with deep green velvet so it was fully enclosed, and the whole place felt more like a cozy lounge. It was exactly what we wanted.” —Taylor, groom
With plans taking shape, it was time to loop in their guests by sending invitations courtesy of Lovehaus Events. This included suggested attire—or rather, fashion looks—and further details of the weekend’s events. A chic serif font was paired with a bold envelope liner and illustrations depicting the dress codes, then the pieces were tucked into green envelopes befitting the forest setting. The finishing touch? A wax seal sporting the couple’s initials.