Miriam Sternoff and O'Neal McKnight first met in an elevator in 2005 thanks to Sean (P. Diddy) Combs. "O'Neal was working for P. Diddy at the time as his personal stylist and I was going to the Sean John offices to look at a collection," says the wardrobe stylist bride. "The elevator opened up and there stood O'Neal with two little white poodles tucked under each arm." Five years later, when the pair headed to the Intrepid in New York City for a friend's birthday party, O'Neal asked Miriam to marry him amidst old fighter planes. "I turned around and saw him go into his pocket and pull out my engagement ring," Miriam remembers. "And, of course, I said yes!"
They spent four years planning their May 18, 2014 wedding at The Park restaurant in New York City, and even documented their process on the Lifetime show Kosher Soul, where the couple delves into the challenges of blending their two different backgrounds. Keep reading to see Meredith Heuer's photos from the big day, planned by Roey Mizrahi Events!
When it came to finding her wedding dress, the stylist bride-to-be found inspiration in the unlikeliest of places: Work! "The dress was off the runway," she says of her Carolina Herrera column gown. "I was online one day prepping for a client and I saw it. I knew right away that was it." But she hit a snag in the road. The dress wasn't going to become available until next season, and, despite visiting Herrera's boutique in Los Angeles, she couldn't get her hands on it. "A few days later the boutique called me and told me they had intercepted the dress during a trunk show and flew it out from New York for me to try," she remembers. She slipped it on and immediately knew it was meant to be.
She made the elbow-length gown even more statement making with the addition of a thick black belt. Miriam accessorized with a Carolina Herrera veil and an all-white bouquet of lilies, the bride's favorite flower.
O'Neal made a fashion statement, too. He wore a burgundy tuxedo blazer and black pants by Topman, paired with patent leather dress shoes.
"We really wanted to have an outdoor feel to the wedding but we did not want to actually get married outside," Miriam says of their dream venue. "We also wanted it to feel a bit urban and wanted one space for both the ceremony and reception." They found that and more in the Park restaurant, a chic space that feels like a forest yet still ultra modern.
The couple let the décor of the indoor garden speak for itself during their ceremony, adding only white lilies to the space. Miriam and O'Neal, who converted to his wife's Jewish faith before the wedding, exchanged personalized vows under the family Chuppah.
Guests then moved to the reception space, which florist Amy Merrick filled with over 1,000 white lilies! "We wanted a simple, classic, yet timeless and mildly edgy feel to our reception," the bride says. Thanks to neutral linens, mirrored table runners, and lots of romantic candlelight, the space felt warm and romantic yet still urban and modern.
There, guests dined on decadent dinner of wild mushroom risotto, grilled salmon, and roasted maple-glazed chicken. For dessert, the couple offered a two-tiered cake filled with flavors like lemon and chocolate.
They shared their first dance to "Love Never Felt So Good" by Michael Jackson before DJ Cassidy took over to keep guests dancing all night long. For those that wanted a break from the dance floor, the couple offered a photo booth packed with fun props.
Miriam and O'Neal, who honeymooned in Tulum, Mexico, suggest that couples remember what is most important about their wedding day. "It is your day. It is about you and your significant other. Do what you want and do not try to please everyone, because you won't be able to and you'll just be frustrated trying," says the bride.
Venue & Catering: The Park || Wedding Planner: Roey Mizrahi Events || Officiant: Rabbi Rachel Cowan || Bride's Wedding Dress: Carolina Herrera || Shoes: Brian Atwood || Groom's Attire: Topman || Flowers: Amy Merrick || Invitations: J&R Letterpress; Camden Print Works; Mon Voir Calligraphy || Music: DJ Cassidy || Linens: La Tavola || Ketubah: Micol Designs || Cakes: City Cakes NY || Rentals: Zak Events || Photo Booth: We Love Photobooths || Transportation: WC Transportation Service Group || Photographer: Meredith Heuer
Want to see more New York City weddings? Then watch the video below, for a stylish city affair you're sure to love!