When Charise Beckett and Jeremy Barbera first met, it was thanks to a little luck — and some courage on Jeremy's part. "I was having lunch with a friend in San Francisco when Jeremy came up to our table and told her that he'd like to meet me," she remembers. He was there on a business trip from New York, so Charise offered to show him around the city, and the rest is history.
In February of 2010, Jeremy and a friend worked up a plan to get Charise to Chicago for what ended up being a performance of the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, narrated by Sir Patrick Stewart. After the show, Jeremy brought Charise on stage and asked her to be his wife.
The bicoastal couple chose to celebrate their wedding not once, but twice! After a ceremony and reception in California in August of 2013, they invited 35 family members and friends to New York City for an intimate dinner reception on April 16th, 2014 at the iconic Lambs Club restaurant, photographed by Derek Lapsley.
Charise spotted her Anna Maier Ulla-Maija gown before she was even engaged. "I was helping a friend shop for dresses and saw someone putting it on a mannequin. It turned out he was the designer, Charles Bunstine. I told him I'd be back to try it on!" she says. She tried on a few other gowns before she got the nude silk and French Chantilly lace dress on, but making a decision was easy. "It felt like I was wearing the dress instead of the dress wearing me," she says.
The couple chose The Lambs Club for its extraordinary cuisine and Art Deco décor. "We love art, theatre, and history, and a fantastic restaurant down the street from the city's Theater District was so true to us," says Charise.
They kept the décor simple, topping tables with pale pink-and-peach garden roses and hydrangeas. Gilded chargers matched the venue's Old New York vibe.
The two-tiered wedding cake featured an explosion of sugar flowers created by Sylvia Weinstock. "She requested the lace pattern from my wedding gown and recreated it on the pale lavender fondant," Charise says. The flavors matched the cake from the couple's wedding in California, layers of apricot and caramel on chocolate-and-vanilla sponge cake.
"It was amazing to have people travel so far to celebrate with us twice," says the bride. "It was better than any gift anyone could ever put a bow on."
The bride's advice is to be true to who you are. "I spent the morning walking in Central Park and going to yoga with a friend instead of getting a much-needed manicure and pedicure. I still laugh about painting my toenails half an hour before the reception, but it was quality time that I'll always treasure," she says. And of course, prioritize the food! "Choose a menu that is as sumptuous as you can afford. We were so lucky to get to have our dream wedding meal!"
Reception Venue: The Lambs Club || Bride's Wedding Dress: Anna Maier Ulla-Maija || Shoes: Ralph Lauren || Jewelry: Tiffany & Co. || Hair & Makeup: John Barrett || Groom's Attire: Ermengildo Zegna || Wedding Bands: Rings Unique, Icon Style || Florist: Designs by Ahn || Invitations & Paper Goods: Lee's Art Shop || Catering: The Lambs Club || Cake: Sylvia Weinstock || Rentals: Party Rental Ltd. || Photography: Derek Lapsley Photographer