When Danielle Kantrowitz-O’Keefe met Louis DeSantis in September of 2009, the timing probably couldn’t have been worse. “It was days before I was moving to Los Angeles to pursue my music career,” she says, “but Louis came to visit a few weeks later, and it was clear from the beginning that we had to try dating long distance.” Every few weeks, Louis would fly to L.A. on Friday night, and then take the red-eye flight back to New York on Monday morning. After a year, Danielle moved back to the East Coast. And after five years together, Louis started working on a plan to propose while Danielle was in Florida for work. “He and his best friend invented a golf tournament, and Louis came down to Florida to join me and to play golf with his friend,” says Danielle. As the pair headed out to the tournament’s formal dinner, Louis handed Danielle his headphones. “Louis is an amazing singer and rapper, and had written a song to propose to me,” she says. Little did she know, his hit single wasn’t the only surprise: Their friends and families were waiting on a nearby yacht to celebrate!
The bride’s family owns a restaurant in Bolton Landing, New York, and Louis and Danielle have spent many summers together in the Adirondacks. “We wanted to get married near my parents’ restaurant, The Huddle, and loved the ceremony venue at The Sagamore,” she says. But the reception space wasn’t quite right, so Danielle kept searching. One day, she and her sister realized a house nearby had the perfect lawn for a tent and approached the owner. “He and his family deliberated (and had dinner at The Huddle, where my parents could further woo them!), and he agreed to let us have our reception on his lawn!” says the bride.
The couple selected an early fall date—September 30, 2017—so a rich fall palette was a must. They used navy, berry, and antique gold tones, but focused more on natural branches and greenery to reflect the organic setting. “I wanted our wedding to feel whimsical, magical, and romantic," she says. Michelle Elaine Weddings helped the couple create this look, and Rowa of Judy Pak Studio was there to photograph it all.
Danielle and Louis created a berry-and-gold suite to invite guests upstate for their waterfront ceremony at The Sagamore.
Danielle and her closest friends wore embellished Daphne Newman robes as they popped champagne and primped before the big moment.
Danielle paired her Liz Martinez gown with Prada wedges featuring a heart cut out in the heel. “I pinned the gown a year before I found it in person,” she says. “My mom and I thought we were going to have to fly to London to find it, but were able to get an appointment at a trunk show at Spina Bride in New York.”
The bride’s romantic bouquet combined dahlias, astilbe, and scabiosa in shades of burgundy.
Petals (in a berry hue, of course!) were placed in calligraphed cones on the edge of each chair so guests could shower the couple after they were officially wed.
Guests gathered by the waterfront, where Louis waited for Danielle in a custom navy tuxedo. “We wrote our own vows, and took the opportunity to really express ourselves,” explains the bride. Danielle walked down the aisle with both her father and stepfather. She adds, “They each stood on one side of me—I could never have chosen between them, so it was perfect this way!”
After their first kiss, Danielle slipped on her new husband's jacket to combat the cold breeze.
After the ceremony, Danielle and Louis hopped in a horse-drawn carriage to head to cocktail hour. “I put a leather jacket on because it was pretty chilly, and everyone thought I’d planned it!” says the bride of her edgy look.
Rich berry tones filled the reception space, which was also surrounded by natural wood accents. Danielle created wooden signs to hang throughout the space, including one that read "Darling, you look perfect tonight" from Ed Sheeran's "Perfect."
The couple sat at a sweetheart table as they dined on an in-season menu of butternut squash bisque, beet and goat cheese salad, and a choice of entrées.
The bride works for On the Move Events and is a singer in the company’s eponymous band, so she, of course, asked her bandmates to play at the wedding! “The bandleader surprised us with a beautiful rendition of ‘All of Me’ by John Legend during dinner, so Louis and I took to the dance floor on our own," she says. "We were brought to tears by the amount of love in the room!” Later, the bride changed into a two-piece ensemble by Lakum for their choreographed first dance.
At the end of the night (after a dramatic lift by Louis!), Danielle went on stage with her band to sing “Bang Bang." This acted as the perfect invitation for guests to head outside for fireworks!
Wedding Planner: Michelle Elaine Weddings
Venue: The Sagamore
Bride's Dress & Veil: Liz Martinez
Bride's Second Dress: Lakum
Bride's Shoes: Prada
Bride's Jewelry: Stephanie Gottlieb
Hair: Elizabeth Lisa
Makeup: Juliana Fink
Groom's Attire: My Suit
Floral Design: Renaissance Floral Design
Paper Products: Jenny C. Design
Catering & Cake: Mazzone Hospitality
Music: On the Move Events & Entertainment
Rentals: Clifton Park Tent Rentals
Transportation: Adirondack Carriage
After-Party: The Huddle Kitchen & Bar
Fireworks: Santore’s World Famous Fireworks
Photography: Judy Pak Studio