“We like to say we’re still on our first date,” says comedian Iliza Shlesinger, author of Girl Logic, of her relationship with Noah Galuten, a restaurateur and author. The pair met on a dating app in July 2016 and hit it off quickly, getting engaged less than a year later. But it wasn’t your typical proposal. “We went out to dinner, and I remember starting to unbutton my pants as I came in the door because I had to pee,” says Iliza. “I realized our living room was full of flowers and candles, and Noah stopped me before I left the room, saying there was something he wanted to do before I ran off to the bathroom. I started crying and turned away, yelling that it couldn’t happen with my fly down!” Iliza managed to zip up her pants and, when she turned around, Noah was proposing. “He’d arranged for my assistant and his mother to set the whole thing up while we were out,” she explains.
For their wedding, the couple envisioned a contemporary celebration in a bright, open space. “I didn’t want it to feel like a warehouse party," says the bride. With that in mind, Noah and Iliza headed to downtown Los Angeles in search of the perfect place, and fell for the floor-to-ceiling windows of the City View Penthouse & Skydeck at the South Park Center. “I loved the idea of our loved ones looking over Los Angeles at dusk, then seeing the city lit up at night,” she says. “Also, there’s a helipad on the roof, and if you aren’t having your wedding pictures taken on a helipad, what are you doing in life?” The bride’s childhood friend, Sarah Natasha, took those helipad pictures (and the rest of them!) on May 12, 2018, so keep reading for an exclusive look at the rest of Noah and Iliza's big day, which was planned by the bride and her mother.
When Iliza first spotted her Monique Lhuillier gown, she admired it—and then kept looking! “The sample was tea-length, and I remember thinking that it was such a shame because the dress was so pretty, but I wanted a full-length gown,” she says. A few days later, Iliza returned to the salon, only this time, there was a full-length sample in the store. “It made me feel like a Kennedy, which is actually what the dress is called,” she says. She added a rhinestone-embellished veil to “bride up” her look at her mother’s request.
Iliza’s dog, Blanche, served as the flower girl, donning a floral collar for her trip down the aisle with one of Noah’s groomsmen. “She started to cry before I walked down the aisle but I couldn’t go to her because, hello, I was about to walk down the aisle. But if I could have, I would have carried her instead of my bouquet, and our first kiss would have been Blanche, Noah, and me,” she says with a laugh.
A white aisle led to a draped chuppah decorated with oversized paper flowers. Iliza’s cousin served as the officiant, and the bride walked down the aisle with both of her parents instead of making the trip alone. “The second the curtains opened and I saw Noah and our guests and how beautiful the moment was, I totally lost it," she says. "I was uncontrollably laughing and crying, and my parents had to literally support me because I couldn’t feel my legs.”
Instead of traditional escort cards, guests’ seating assignments were printed on custom cootie catchers that featured fun facts about the bride and groom inside.
For a touch of whimsy, guests were welcomed to cocktail hour with a “wine wall,” where mysterious hands offered glasses of wine through a boxwood hedge. “We didn’t want the party to feel formal or stuffy,” says Iliza. The couple’s initials, ING, were printed everywhere, including on chocolates set under Alice in Wonderland-style glass domes at each place setting.
At each table, white manzanita branches were strung with orchids and votive candles in glass orbs. Below, clusters of white roses, lilies, and orchids surrounded the base of the statement display.
Jeremy Fox, a chef and Noah's dear friend, created the evening’s menu. He and Noah co-wrote On Vegetables, and a number of courses came from the book’s pages. “We had a vegetable-forward meal to showcase the amazing local produce,” says the bride. Dinner included smoked black cod with green garlic ravigotte, and stuffed chicken with nettles salsa verde. Adds Iliza, “Everyone says you won’t eat at your wedding, but I made sure it wasn’t true. I ate everything!”
The couple’s cake was a simple style with a playful twist: The tiered confection was made of cascading white wafers, set on a rotating cake stand. “Our baker created a tiny marzipan version of Blanche, ‘eating’ some of the cake,” Iliza says. “I loved that it was elegant, but still funny.” The couple also set up a dramatic dessert display, featuring everything from macarons and cookies to doughnut holes. “People were so excited to try the other desserts that they didn’t eat their wedding cake, which was vanilla cake with passion fruit buttercream," says the bride. "I took it upon myself to walk around to empty tables and help myself to their cake!”
As a nod to the venue’s above-the-skyline location, Iliza and Noah topped the dance floor with a glamorous cloud-inspired balloon sculpture. “The vibe was chic and modern, but we still wanted it to be fun!” the bride explains.
Also, since the wedding took place the day before Mother’s Day, the couple made sure to honor their own moms. “We each wrote letters to one another’s mothers, acknowledging the woman who raised the person we were about to marry,” says Iliza. They also invited their families over for Mother’s Day brunch the next morning.
Looking back on the big day, the comedian bride has some words of wisdom (with a dose of humor!) for other brides-to-be: “Weddings bring out the best and worst in people. Your aunt you’ve never met who isn’t invited sends you $500 and your best friend shows up wearing jeans, or gets so drunk they make out with your Dad. The point of the wedding is the outcome, to be married and to celebrate your love. So make sure to do everything you can to remember that it is about the two of you and do what you need to feel good!”
Venue: South Park Center
Officiant: Brett Konner
Bride's Dress: Monique Lhuillier
Bride's Veil: OBridal
Hair & Makeup: Mahfud Ibrahum
Bridesmaids' Dresses: Dessy
Groom's Attire: The Black Tux
Groomsmen's Attire: The Black Tux
Engagement Ring: Marvel Jewelry
Wedding Bands: Marvel Jewelry
Floral Design: Butterfly Floral Design
Catering: Patina Group, with Jeremy Fox
Cake: The Butter End
Music: DJ Krieger
Wine Wall: Pzazz Productions
Photography: Sarah Natasha