My wedding day was one of the best days I’ve ever had, but if I’m being honest, for a long time I wasn’t actually sure I wanted much of a wedding. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely wanted to get married- I was just thinking more along the lines of City Hall and a nice dinner. I worried about the costs and having enough time to properly plan it, but beyond that, I hate being the center of attention and I’m not a fan of getting dressed up. I broke out in hives just shopping for something to wear to my high school prom, so planning a party where everyone would be looking at me in a fancy white dress just seemed like a recipe for disaster. Despite all of this, my husband, Rob, somehow managed to convince me to give the whole wedding thing a shot. He was excited about the idea and knew we couldn’t pass up the opportunity to get all of our family and friends together in one place to celebrate.
After weeks of researching vendors and scouring wedding blogs, I began to realize for me, a big part of the decision hinged on finding the right venue. We wanted a space that was unique and full of character, but that also really felt like us. We looked everywhere, from country clubs and ballrooms to art galleries and lofts, until we found the Please Touch Museum. A children’s museum set inside the historic Memorial Hall building in Fairmount Park, it was the perfect combination of playfulness and beauty. As soon as we saw the restored carousel that would serve as the backdrop for our ceremony and that our guests could ride throughout the evening, we were sold.
From there, things just seemed to fall into place. With the help of talented friends and family and an amazing group of professionals, we began to create a wedding filled with carnival touches from the stationery down to the decor. We chose marine blue as our main shade but added lots of pops of color throughout our details including the amazing flowers Petals Lane designed for us.
We also incorporated a few elements from one of our favorite movies, Up, as another personal touch.
And although it took forever, I even managed to find a dress that didn’t give me hives.
On September 18, 2010, after months of planning, I woke up to a beautiful day excited to marry my best friend. While Rob hung out with his groomsmen…
…I spent my morning getting ready with my bridal party.
After a few mimosas and some finishing touches, it was time to head over to the Merchant Exchange Building with Jennifer Childress Photography for one of my favorite parts of the day- our first look. I know it’s not for everyone, but I loved it. It was private and special and allowed us to spend more of the day together.
Eventually our bridal party joined us and we took pictures around Old City and at the museum
At 6:30pm, our ceremony began. I thought for sure I would be too nervous to enjoy it, but once I started walking down the aisle with my parents by my side, I was surprisingly calm.
We worked with our officiant, Andy Mahaney, to created a simple ceremony filled with some of our favorite readings and music. We also included the wine and love letter ceremony.
Before we knew it, we were husband and wife!
Following our “I do’s”, we took a few quick photos with a truck from Rob’s firehouse and we were off to celebrate.
It was so exciting to see everyone’s reaction to the space and the details we put together. Our tables were named after carnival rides and games and decorated with pictures of us in Coney Island. Ticket rolls, pinwheels, and bunting were used as accents throughout the venue and our guests were treated to a colorful candy buffet and an assortment of Jones Soda as favors.
Instead of a traditional guest book, we opted for a photo booth.
And Rob even had a Skee Ball machine brought in as a surprise!
Thanks to Proud to Plan, the entire night went off without a hitch. We started the reception with our first dance to “This Will Be Our Year” by the Zombies. Despite the fact that our moves usually revolve around the Robot and the Sprinkler, we managed a few relatively graceful spins and dips.
We toasted with family and friends.
And snuck away for a little while to explore the museum.
We ate, drank, and smashed some cake.
And with the help of Synergetic Sound and Lighting, we kicked off our shoes and danced the night away.
From the first moment to the last, everything was better than I imagined. Two and a half years later I still smile like crazy every time I think about our wedding day. I’m so thankful that Rob convinced me to look beyond City Hall, and even more thankful that he never says “I told you so!”
To see our blog post on Laura and Rob’s wedding, you can go here.