Kathryn and James first met as freshman at Loyala University Maryland, but it wasn't until a year after graduating in the fall of 2009 that the couple finally left the friend-zone. Two days after reconnecting at a mutual friend's birthday party, the pair went on their first date and never looked back. Four years later, on December 16, 2013, James took Kathryn to Battery Park City and popped the question in the snow by the water.
On October 18, 2014, the couple tied the knot in a religious ceremony at the bride's childhood parish before celebrating with friends and family in a classic, golf club wedding in Pennsylvania. Read on to see the gorgeous details of their fall wedding day, designed by Natalie Trento Events, as captured by Grace Winter of Asya Photography.
Before she tried on any dresses, Kathryn knew she has her heart set on a Monique Lhuillier gown. She ultimately chose a lace-and-tulle A-line wedding dress from the beloved designer and customized the look by adding delicate tulle cap sleeves. The bride borrowed her cousin's Vera Wang veil and accessorized with diamond earrings from her mother, an infinity bracelet from her husband-to-be, and a gold bracelet that was a gift from her late grandmother to her mother.
Her florist created a hand-tied bouquet of white stock, rice flowers, tulips, hydrangeas, and succulents, with pops of pink thanks to a few fluffy garden roses, for the bride to carry down the aisle.
Kathryn's five bridesmaids wore pale green silk chiffon dresses from J.Crew. Their bouquets consisted of thistle, purple-and-white stock, white tulips, and green hydrangeas.
James chose a classic black tux and honored his late grandfather by wearing his original wedding band.
The couple chose to wed at the parish where Kathryn had belonged while growing up, Our Mother of Good Counsel in Bryn Mawr, PA. Her father walked her down the aisle, which was lined with sheer ivory ribbons. They let the beauty of their church shine, decorating with only two large vases filled with French tulips and bear grass.
Following the ceremony, the entire wedding party moved to Merion Golf Club in Ardmore, PA. The bride's family has belonged to the club since before she was born! "I always knew I wanted to be married there," Kathryn says. "The building itself where our reception was held was recently rebuilt right before our wedding. My father oversaw the design and construction of the building."
Kathryn and James wanted their wedding to be both formal and yet still personal — and decidedly unstuffy. Elegant letterpressed escort cards directed guests to their seats where they found a calligraphed menu card with their nickname, which the bride felt made the evening more special and reminiscent of a great dinner party.
They settled on a crisp palette of sage green and white with touches of deep purple for their reception. Long farm tables and bentwood chairs were brought in to complement the barn aesthetic of the building. White runners and low centerpieces of thistle, stock, hydrangea, succulents, Hypericum berries, wax flower, bear grass, and ferns in mismatched urns severed as centerpieces. "We loved our tables so much because everyone said how different they were in comparison to other weddings they had attended," Kathryn says. "It made me happy that we did something we liked instead of just following the rules."
Guests dined on a seasonal fall menu with dishes like a spinach and fennel salad, a nontraditional surf and turf of roasted beef tenderloin and stuffed lobster tails, and a fall vegetable medley. Instead of signature cocktails, the couple worked with the bride's parents to choose wines that reflected the season.
The couple danced to Van Morrison's "Someone Like You" for their first dance, before their band, Big Ric Rising, invited their guests to the dance floor. "They were so fun and people were dancing all night," Kathryn remembers.
One important lesson Kathryn learned from wedding planning? "It is a lot of work so when people offer to help, take them up on it!" Kathryn says.
Ceremony Venue: Our Mother of Good Counsel || Reception Venue: Merion Golf Club || Wedding Planner: Natalie Trento Events || Bride's Wedding Dress: Monique Lhuillier || Bride's Veil: Vera Wang || Bride's Jewelry: Tiffany & Co. || Bride's Shoes: Jimmy Choo || Bride's Hair: Beth Forte || Bride's Makeup: Maureen Sortino || Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew || Florist: Flower Envy Affair || Invitations: The Paperia || Other Paper Products: Designer's Fine Press || Calligraphy: Calligraphy by Kathy || Guest Book: The Little House Shoppe || Reception Music: Big Ric Rising || Catering: Merion Golf Club || Cake: The Ultimate Bake Shoppe || Transportation: King Limousine || Accommodations: The Wayne Hotel; The Radnor Hotel || Photographer: Grace Winter of Asya Photography
Did you love this classic fall wedding? Then go inside another couple's autumnal big day in the video below!