When Kaitlyn Taaffe first spotted Robby Cronholm, he was playing a ukulele and wearing a Taylor Swift shirt. "Robby, who is a singer and songwriter for the band Taxes, was on tour with my friend's boyfriend, so we went to see them together," says Kaitlyn. "Once I spotted him on stage, I couldn't resist!" The couple dated long-distance for a few years, which Kaitlyn says made the heart grow fonder and earned her a lot of frequent flyer miles!) In April of 2018, the pair had planned a trip to Hawaii, and Kaitlyn was cautiously optimistic that a proposal might be on the horizon.
"A week before we left, Robby took me out to lunch and then for a walk by the water," she recalls. "I thought it was weird, until he got down on one knee!" The trip to Hawaii wasn't for Robby's proposal, but instead would be a celebration of their engagement.
Kaitlyn and Robby frequent the Battery, a private club in San Francisco's North Beach, and decided it was the perfect place for their wedding on October 20, 2018. "We were married less than six months after getting engaged," Kaitlyn adds. "It was stressful, but meant we couldn't get bogged-down in the minutiae." They hired Rachael Silard of Ruby & Rose to help plan and design the celebration, which was inspired by Dutch masters and the Battery's moody and opulent design scheme.
Using rich tones of eggplant, burgundy lilac, and mauve, Robby and Kaitlyn put together a modern fall wedding for just 80 guests. "It was hard to keep the list so small, but we loved that we got to spend time with each and every one of our guests," the bride explains. Keep reading to see Christina McNeill's photos of the romantic rooftop wedding below.
Kaitlyn's bridesmaids all wore black dresses they selected themselves. "I wanted them to feel their best," says the bride. To further enhance the bridal party's dramatic look, each 'maid carried a single rose stem tied with a flowing ribbon.
When Robby popped the question, Kaitlyn already had plans to visit friends and family in Nashville so she turned the trip into an excuse to go dress shopping. Fittingly, Kaitlyn's cousin and maid of honor worked at The Dress Theory, a bridal salon in Nashville, and set up an appointment that led Kaitlyn to her Theia wedding dress. "I felt beautiful and comfortable, and it was clear this was the one," she says.
On the big day, the bride paired her dress with gold pumps by Christian Louboutin, her aunt's Van Cleef & Arpels earrings, and Tiffany & Co. bracelets from Robby and her mother.
The groom also hand-selected his ensemble, pairing a white dinner jacket with satin-striped tuxedo pants and loafers. He accessorized with his grandfather's tuxedo studs, an oversized bowtie, and his father's Tiffany & Co. watch—a gift from his mother to his father on their wedding day in 1972! Kaitlyn gave Robby his final accessory: a Gretsch White Falcon guitar. "My note to him said that it better not be his favorite thing in white that day," she says with a laugh.
Robby's goddaughter and Kaitlyn's bridesmaid's daughter served as flower girls and wore white tulle dresses for the occasion.
On the Battery's rooftop, wild and romantic flowers—dahlias, amaryllis, garden roses, lilies, tuberose, and delphinium in shades of pale pink and cream—surrounded an elevated stage where Robby, Kaitlyn, and their officiant stood during the ceremony.
Robby's sister officiated the proceedings, during which the couple shared vows sprinkled with inside jokes. "Robby is a huge Morrissey fan, and we've been to at least eight of his concerts since we started dating," says Kaitlyn. "However, Morrissey is notorious for canceling his shows at the last minute, so I vowed to continue trying to go to Morrissey shows with Robby, no matter how many times they're canceled!"
At cocktail hour, the couple embraced the jewel tones and modern furnishings of the Battery's existing decor.
Kaitlyn and Robby wanted their reception to feel like an "opulent and festive feast," and designed such a setting in a seasonal fall wedding palette. Each table was topped with brown velvet linens and gold flatware, while lush centerpieces combined chocolate cosmos, lisianthus, dahlias, garden roses, and scabiosa in shades of mauve and burgundy. "We mixed in bowls of fresh seasonal fruit to enhance the feast-like feel," adds the bride.
Of course, the feast was completed with a "killer" menu of garnet yam soup with fresh apples, pan-seared salmon with chimichurri, and harissa and citrus roasted chicken.
At the end of the night, the newlyweds filled a champagne tower and cut the wedding cake before taking to the dance floor with their guests. "Robby has a song on his upcoming album called 'Last Call,' and I sent it to our DJ so it could be played as the last song as a surprise," says Kaitlyn. "It was such an amazing moment to see all of our family and friends dancing around to a song Robby had written!"
Wedding Planner: Ruby & Rose || Venue: The Battery || Bride's Dress: Theia || Bride's Veil: Toni Federici || Bride's Shoes: Christian Louboutin || Bride's Jewelry: Van Cleef & Arpels, Tiffany & Co. || Hair: Dreamcatcher Artistry || Makeup: Wallett || Groom's Attire: Knot Standard, Saks Fifth Avenue || Groomsmen's Attire: The Black Tux || Engagement Ring & Wedding Bands: K Go & Co. || Floral Design: Lambert Floral Studio || Paper Products: Smock Paper, Studio Luzance || Catering: The Battery || Cake & Favors: Pretty Please Bakeshop || Ceremony Music: Alden Trio || Reception Music: DJ Leah Rose || Rentals: Theoni Collection, Got Light, Hensley Event Resources || Photo Booth: Tomfoolery Photobooth || Photography: Christina McNeill