One sentence sum-up of the wedding vibe: Everything about it was perfect; we never stopped smiling, everything fell into place, everything went better than plan, and we didn’t want the day to end.
The Info—Photographer: Smitten Chickens (APW Sponsor) / Venue: New York City Manhattan Courthouse / Tarra & Ashley’s Dresses and Veils: Handmade by the brides / Tarra & Ashley’s Shoes: TOMS / Flowers: Hand-picked from a twenty-four-hour flower shop near the brides’ hostel and assembled the night before the wedding in their hostel room at the Bowery. It was definitely a wedding on a shoestring.
Other cool stuff we should know about: The initial intention of our trip was to see Niagara Falls in New York to celebrate Tarra’s Master’s degree from UC Davis. Ashley secretly saved up money and asked all her friends to give money instead of a graduation gift so she could buy the plane tickets. We realized that it was legal for us to get married in New York and had many long discussions on whether we should. We came to the conclusion that we didn’t want to miss an opportunity to make that commitment to each other no matter where that left us legally. The toughest part of that decision was that our family and friends couldn’t make it out to celebrate with us, so in the end it had to be about us not missing a chance to be married.
The ceremony itself was really short, however our officiant was extremely genuine. It seemed that he was honestly happy for us and made us feel like we were the first people he had ever married. Everyone we met throughout our trip to New York seemed to want to celebrate with us. We kept receiving “wedding gifts,” be it free jars of chutney at the Ithaca farmers market or free deserts with our dinners, people kept congratulating us and their support cannot be overstated.
Our wedding day was the best day of our lives. Our photographer followed us around the city for a whole six hours. There were many unscripted events that made the day special. One of the best parts about it was having a multitude of strangers from all parts of the globe say congratulations, take our picture, and even have a member of their party pose with us like we were Disney princesses. We also were gifted a part of the Brooklyn Bridge that had fallen off that day by a city worker who told us not to tell anyone. (So shhhh!) After walking across the Brooklyn Bridge, we rode the carousel and also found a nautical themed playground. We jumped in the boat-shaped sand box and slid down a slide in our wedding dresses. It was just a really fun day that we didn’t want to end. It wouldn’t have been as special without our photographer Sarah, who was also our witness.
After our wedding we honeymooned in Upstate New York. We spent three days in the city, and the rest of the ten days road-tripping through the fall colors, spending nights in bed and breakfasts, and sightseeing. We saw the birthplace of women’s rights in Seneca Falls, hiked at Watkins Glen, went whiskey and wine tasting, went to the farmers market and Moosewood Restaurant in Ithaca, went apple picking, and ended up in Niagara Falls.
Favorite thing about the wedding: On our way back to our hostel we stumbled upon the Little Cupcake Shop where we stopped and got our wedding cupcakes. It was really special because it tied into the rest of the day’s events where the universe seemed to be conspiring to give us a “perfect” wedding with all the gifts and congratulations.