Bridesmaid Dress Salon
James proposed to Desirea over lunch at their favorite spot: a butterfly garden in New York City's Greenwich Village. "I had to go back to work and try to concentrate after that," recalls Desirea.
Desirea wore a Modern Trousseau gown and a birdcage veil from Unveiled Bridal Designs.
The couple wed at Waterloo United Methodist Church in Stanhope.
The 2:30 p.m. ceremony incorporated readings of an Apache wedding prayer and "Touched by an Angel," a poem by Maya Angelou.
Her bridesmaids donned dresses by LulaKate from Bella Bridesmaid.
Bridesmaids carried bouquets containing seasonal blooms like dahlias and celosia as well as shafts of wheat.
All floral designs, including the flower girl's abundant basket of dahlias and celosia, were by Desirea's aunt, a florist at Stony Hill Gardens & Farm Market.
Desirea and James, a graphic designer, created the floral-themed wedding invitations.
The couple also designed their own wedding programs.
After the ceremony, the couple's 135 guests attended cocktail hour on the patio of the Crossed Keys Inn, where they sipped pumpkin spice martinis and enjoyed mini hamburgers.
In keeping with the atmosphere of the 18th-century inn, Desirea wanted the décor to have an antique-inspired look with lots of seasonal touches. Table centerpieces featured mums, dahlias, solidagos, and berries arranged in antique teapots and Spode pitchers.
Pumpkins carved with numbers directed guests to their tables, which were covered in tea-stained lace runners.
The inn catered the three-course meal, which included an apple butternut bisque, chateaubriand, and roasted rosemary potatoes.
Café Pierrot made the carrot cake, which was decorated with buttercream and marzipan leaves and pumpkins.
Desirea and James kicked off the party with their first dance to "The Very Thought of You" by Perry Como.
Later, friends and family joined the couple on the dance floor. DJNYC provided the music for the evening.
For those who wanted a break from dancing, an outdoor fire pit offered a respite, complete with scotch, cigars, and a s'mores station. "We wanted our guests to feel like they were in a different time in a far-off place," says Desirea.