Neither Kim nor Justin—both born and bred in Brooklyn, New York—ever considered getting hitched anywhere but the place they call home. But equally important was having a stress-free big day. "So we kept it really simple," Kim says of the couple's June 24, 2012 wedding at Brooklyn's reBar.
The couple announced their summer wedding with bunting-inspired invitations from Brides own line, Brides Fine Wedding Papers. But despite a splash of pink on the invitations, "we didn't really love any color enough to use it as our wedding color," Kim explains, "so we just went with classic black and white."
"No beading, no lace, no bling," Kim says when she describes her Jim Hjelm Occasions dress, a bridesmaid's dress in a shade of ivory. "I fell in love with the portrait neckline and open back. I tried it on in fuchsia and still knew immediately it was the one. I didn't think it would happen like they say it does, but I remember putting it on and immediately locking eyes with my bridal consultant in the mirror and we both knew this was it."
The bride neglected a veil, but spun her brown locks into a classic braided bun accented with a single white orchid. Her teardrop earrings were purchased online for a song, she says. "They look expensive but were from Overstock!" Kim reveals.
Even though Kim's mother paid for the dress, the bride remained budget conscious. "I just didn't see the point in paying thousands of dollars for something I was going to wear for a few hours," she explains.
Kim was also conscious of her sister and maid of honor's expenses. "I wanted her to be able to wear her dress again so I told her to get any dress she wanted in black," she says. The maid chose a tea-length strapless ensemble.
A florist combined the bride's favorite flowers, pink peonies, with ivory roses to make Kim's fluffy bouquet.
"My husband didn't want boutonnieres, and I didn't feel like it was necessary either," Kim says. "It was just him and his brother up there." The best man donned a boutonniere that read BM in place of a bloom.
Kim and Justin were impressed with their officiant, who weaved stories of the couple into the wedding ceremony. "The whole ceremony felt very personal," Kim says. "She told the story of how we met, and met again, and it was so humorous and heartfelt."
The couple exchanged traditional vows "we tweaked ... to be a little more modern," Kim says.
Photos: Kristi Drago-Price Photography
"reBar is in a great spot in Dumbo with views of the Brooklyn Bridge." the bride says. "We wanted a venue that felt homey and rustic, not ornate or formal. reBar is full of dark wood and wrought iron, funky art, and antique furniture. We loved that we didn't have to do much to decorate the space because it looked great on it's own."
"I'm not a DIY girl," Kim admits, "but there was one thing I couldn't find—a nice card box." The bride nearly gave up on having one at all, until she "was at another wedding where I saw guests going crazy looking for one." She realized she needed a spot for guests to deposit their cards, so she purchased a white-washed box and asked her mom to paint the word cards across its front.
"We're not really big dancers," the bride says, "so our wedding was more about mingling, drinking, and eating. It was super casual and more of a cocktail party." Guests could place their cocktails on custom coasters made for the big day.
"We didn't want a wedding cake that looked nice but no one really eats," Kim says. So the couple asked their favorite local bakery to make not one but several cakes for the reception. "Little Cupcake Bakeshop made us a tiered vanilla butter cream for us to cut into, and three smaller cakes in our favorite flavors, including chocolate peanut butter, red velvet and chocolate cloud. Our guests went crazy for our cakes! There were no leftovers!"
The couple's cake topper was a custom purchase from Etsy—two wooden hearts etched with the couple's initals and wedding date.
"We also had banana cream cheese, lemon vanilla, and honey cinnamon cupcakes, and these amazing little dessert shooters," the bride says. "I feel like every dessert in creation was represented at our wedding!"
Even though Kim and Justin aren't big dancers, they still spun across the dance floor to their song, Can't Help Falling In Love. "But the Elvis version can get a little hokey so we chose a slower, more romantic version by Ingrid Michaelson," the bride says.
"Keep it simple," Kim advises other brides as she reflects on their wedding day. "We saved a ton of money by forgoing things like favors, boutonnieres, expensive limos, etc. Our family members were used to cookie-cutter formal weddings, so our wedding seemed odd to them, but everyone ended up loving it. And I know everyone says this, but really try to enjoy the day. It goes by so fast."
Ceremony Venue: reBar || Reception Venue: reBar || Bride's Wedding Dress: Jim Hjelm Occasions || Bride's Shoes: Kate Spade || Bride's Wedding Ring: Diamonds by Janet Ltd. || Groom's Tux: Hugo Boss || Groom's Wedding Ring: Diamonds by Janet Ltd. || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jim Hjelm Occasions || Groomsmen Attire: Men's Wearhouse || Florist: reBar || Caterer: reBar || Stationery: Brides Fine Wedding Papers || Cake Baker: Little Cupcake Bakeshop || Entertainment: reBar || Photography: Kristi Drago-Price Photography