Bridechilla Graduate, Kasey, shares her deeply personal, emotional, woodland & nature inspired wedding to Michael at Long Island's Fox Hollow.
Tell us a little about yourselves!
Kasey: The moment I saw Mike, I knew I was in trouble.
I did everything I could to avoid liking him. Until I did. Then I did everything to avoid loving him…that happened too.
Mike and I met through my Alpha Chi Omega sister/roommate. She will tell you that she met him freshman year in the laundry room, but won’t tell me what he was wearing (or not wearing) when that happened.
Mike crept into my life by loaning us his 52″ flat screen TV for a year. He claimed he didn’t want his roommates using it more than him, and as long as he could come over to watch it every once in a while, we could keep it in our room.
I was completely naive and unassuming of his true intentions.
Mike’s class schedule went up on the wall with the rest of my roommates and he came over often. He even starred in a video project of mine.
I went away on Spring Break my Senior Year, and debated taking Mike to formal as my date. We had flirted enough that I felt he was interested, but was unsure if I was ready to be so forward about my feelings. I decided I wouldn’t take him.
When I returned to my dorm room, there were 2 dozen roses waiting at my door from him with a “I hope you had a nice trip, I missed you” card.
I ended up taking him to formal.
Later Mike went out to dinner with his Aunt and Uncle who were visiting town. He came back to school and in my room, told me he couldn’t stop talking about me all night, and wondered if I would like to be his girlfriend, officially.
I agreed and we finished out the semester, graduated together, and moved back to NY.
In April 2014, after living together for 2 years and purchasing our first home on Long Island, Mike took two days off, claiming he needed a break from his crazy work schedule. I thought nothing of it. I told Mike when it came time that he wanted to propose, I wanted to know nothing about it. But when I came home after his first day off, he couldn’t contain his excitement that he had wanted to go into the city (Manhattan) to look at rings, but lost the courage at the last minute.
The next day, I came home to an exasperated Mike who claimed I had just beat him home because he had been in the city all day…I did not marry a man of mystery. I played dumb and he told me he had stopped to see his sister while he was there and did look at rings, when I stopped him and said I didn’t want to hear anymore. Mike and I share everything with each other and I could tell this was killing him.
I was extremely anxious about Mike proposing. Like any girl, I wanted a full blown youtube worthy proposal where secret photographers caught the very moment he went down on one knee and my jaw dropped. But I told Mike my only stipulation was that it was not at a restaurant.
Mike would pitch random ideas at me over the next few weeks. “Lets take a walk” he would say, and me, being very keen to his lack of subtlety, said, no.
It came down to one night when I was sitting on the couch when I confessed my anxiety surrounding the big commitment in marriage. I came from a home where no marriage had lasted, and it was the last thing I wanted to get wrapped up in. Mike had reassured me in the way that only he can. I told him that when he was ready and thought the time was right, I would listen.
He said “I’ll be right back” and ran downstairs.
My heart started pounding.
He returned and began to confess that he knew I wanted a big romantic gesture and that he really wanted to give that to me but just couldn’t wait any longer and wanted to spend the rest of his life with me. He got down on one knee, said my name, and asked me to marry him.
And well, I guess you know what my answer was.
Tell us about your wedding!
Because I own a design studio, my wedding aesthetic had to be epic. Probably the most common comment I get from people is, “I can only imagine what your invitations looked like.” After all, the expectations of my guests (and truthfully from myself) were so high, I knew I had to blow it out of the water.
I know so many facets of print methods. I had to decide which would be right for my suite. Letterpress? Foil? Laser cut? Metal? I considered all the options.
Wood? Wood. Reverse engraved wood, because you know, standard engraved was “too common….::eye roll::”
My invites came together just as my best designs do. Me playing around in illustrator with different shapes and elements.
I love texture. I love fine detail. I love the smallest personalization to make every last element your very own.
I found some beautiful line work in the pumpkin and leaf skeleton silhouettes. I blew our names up to anchor the design. I clipped the corners to make it a unique shape. Every text element had to be anchored somehow in a nonconventional shape. Bark, branches, stumps, it was all setting the tone for my “raw element” feel. I hand gilded every invite to add a metallic shine to our names. I sketched our foxes in pencil, which would blow up into our wedding logo and be on everything from hotel door hangers to ice sculptures.
Funnily enough, my invitations went out late because I *needed* hand calligraphy. RSVP postcards got lost in the mail. But I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t beaming with pride with the result. “They even smell good!” “LOVE this” “Best invitation ever.” I had wrapped up my invitation into a package of love for every person it was extended to. It set the tone for our event.
the invitation process took about 4-6 months from the original ideas. I love the way they came out, they're still my favorite suite to date. I am hoarding every last extra invite I have. I am framing one with my bouquet flowers.
What was totally worth it?
Every single cent I thought was a waste of money before I planned a wedding was 110% worth it. I went over budget on things like stationery (duh) music, and food because I wanted to have an epic party and shatter everyone's expectations of a wedding. Considering I'm still getting glowing reviews, I'd say we crushed it.
Our first look was a point of contention. I had always dreamt of my groom crying as I walked down the aisle and he saw me for the first time. But time became an issue as we got married in late fall and Daylight Savings meant that if we didn’t do a first look, all of our wedding photos would have to be indoors, or in the night as our reception went on without us. I “caved” and did a first look and I can tell you it was probably the single best thing I did for myself on my wedding day (besides actually getting married of course). When I saw my best friend before we got started with family pictures, I was instantly relieved and excited to get married. We rode to the church together and then I hid in a broom closet (I didn’t want late arriving guests to see me) buzzing to get out there and do this thing.
What was not worth it?
Trying to DIY. I ended up being stressed to the max and the sole point person on the morning of the wedding. I didn't get to enjoy a lot of my engagement because of the stress I put on myself. I'd have done anything to have had a coordinator or someone helping greet all the vendors and receive things like flower deliveries while I actually got ready.
What did you throw in the Fuck-it Bucket?
As we got closer, things that seemed really important to me to perfect just needed to get done. I was going to do favors beyond the pumpkins and I honestly just ran out of time.
What advice do you have for other engaged couples?
Use your resources. Wedding expos or showcases are typically just a grab for your email address--make a dummy account just for the wedding for your sanity. If you don't have help planning, hire someone. There is no shame in admitting that you have no idea what you're doing and having a professional do their thing. The time and stress you'll save offsets the cost.
Bridechilla is all about being yourself and not letting the opinions of other's influence you. This mindset was a lifesaver to plan the wedding of my dreams and have no regrets. Opinions will die down after the wedding, but your memory of your wedding day will stay with you forever!
Kasey + Michael's Rockstar Vendors
Bridechilla Directory Members
Design & Stationery: revelry + heart
Photographer: Deb + Matt
DJ: Barattini productions
Florist: Wick's Florist
Video: Joseph Minasi
Trolley: M&V Limosines
Men's Attire: Bonaventure
Gown: Frew's Bridal, designed by Sophia Tolli
Makeup Artist: Makeup by Jessie LaSerra
Bridesmaids Dresses: WTOO
Venue/Caterer: Fox Hollow
Ceremony Venue/Officiant: Community Church of East Williston
Daiquiri Station: Daiquiri Daddy
Photobooth: ISH Photobooths
Alterations: Zizi Nasir