Though it took two years for Brooke Ellis and Geoffrey Schwartz to graduate from coworkers to significant others, once they started dating in August of 2016, the two creatives fell fast. They got engaged less than a year later, in late May of 2017, when Geoffrey proposed with an engagement ring hidden inside a book from their favorite Brooklyn bookstore. Then, the New York-based couple set a date for just six months away, and headed to Columbus, Ohio for their big day on November 11, 2017.
In Columbus, Brooke and Geoffrey chose Strongwater as their venue for it’s "blend of Old World and industrial aesthetics," as well as its support for local artists and the community. “Most of the warehouse is used as a space for local artists, which gives the building such great energy,” says the bride. Brooke and Geoffrey used the space for an intimate Sunday brunch wedding, during which everyone enjoyed strong coffee, mimosas, and breakfast bites before watching the couple tie the knot. “It really fit our vision of camaraderie and conversation,” the bride explains.
“I wanted something bohemian, edgy, and definitely not ‘bridal,’” Brooke says of her wedding gown search. “When I saw this Alexander Wang dress at Barneys, I knew it was just the thing—and that I could wear it again.” In fact, she was so certain that she didn't even try other gowns on.
With such a simple dress, the bride decided to go "big" with her bouquet, selecting an organic-feeling design made with roses, ranunculus, lilies, hellebores, and berries surrounded by eucalyptus leaves and ferns.
“We asked our dear friend, artist Lisa Baumstein Smalley, to design our ketubah,” Brooke says. “The ketubah, or Jewish wedding contract, asks that you be equal partners in life, friendship, and love. Signing it felt really momentous!”
A lush chuppah covered in greenery acted as the centerpiece of the ceremony site. “Our florist also used a lot of potted plants and ferns to make everything feel a little more relaxed and real,” Brooke adds. The couple stood on a vintage rug that now has a place in their home.
After walking down the aisle with their parents, Geoffrey and Brooke were married in a modern twist on Jewish tradition. “We included the Seven Blessings, but wrote our own interpretations of each and invited family members to read them,” the bride describes.
A seated brunch followed the vows, and guests found their way to whitewashed tables topped with sleek black chargers and lush centerpieces of ferns, seeded eucalyptus, roses, and ranunculus. The meal included seasonal salads, frittatas, and challah French toast. “Everyone was asking for the recipe!” says Brooke. Instead of cake, the couple served a selection of doughnuts to round out their morning meal.
“The only dance we had—or really needed!—was the Hora,” says Brooke. “Being lifted into the air above everyone is one of my favorite memories.”
Looking back on their simply chic wedding brunch, the couple says to do just that: “Keep it as simple as you can, and don’t sweat the details,” says the bride. “Hire great vendors so you can rely on them to make it happen!”
Wedding Coordinator: Auburn and Ivory || Venue: Strongwater || Bride's Dress: Alexander Wang || Bride's Shoes: Alexander Wang || Makeup: Victoria Moore || Groom's Attire: Calvin Klein || Floral Design: Bear Roots Floral || Catering: Two Caterers, Native Juice || Cake: The Donut Kitchen || Rentals: Auburn and Ivory || Accommodations: Hotel LeVeque || Photography: Addison Jones