Mary & Matthew | Real Weddings
Mary shares the fun details of her and Matthew’s wedding day in the revived downtown sector of Cleveland, which provided plenty of stunning photo ops to capture their celebration’s rustic glamour.
We really wanted our wedding details to complement our style and the city we love! We chose to host our rehearsal dinner and reception in downtown Cleveland because we wanted our guests to experience the city’s revitalization and share in the great food and fun.
Our rehearsal dinner was held at the Music Box Supper Club on the West Bank of the Flats. In choosing our reception venue, the view was a key part of our decision. We toured the Club at Key Center and it was exactly what we imagined. It boasts floor-to-ceiling windows, high ceilings and an amazing view of downtown Cleveland and its lakefront.
Tell us about your wedding theme:
Our wedding theme was rustic-glam. Our wedding colors were pale pink and navy blue with gold accents. The bridesmaids wore pale pink dresses in different styles, and the groomsmen wore navy blue suits with pale pink ties. I wanted the bridesmaids to be able to choose their own dress and be comfortable in their choice. Our ring bearers—our two sons—wore navy blue suits and one-of-a-kind bow ties to match their dad, and our flower girls—our four nieces—wore the prettiest white lace dresses.
We included a lot of DIY elements. Some of my favorites were Cleveland-themed hotel welcome bags, Mason jars with fresh flowers for centerpieces, a unique seating chart that perfectly matched our invitations (thanks to one of my creative bridesmaids), a remembrance table and an awesome kids’ room decked out with a video-game station, board games, crafts and more!
How did you select your dress? What made you sure it was the one?
One of the hardest parts of wedding planning for me was finding my dress. My style is a little funky and different, and none of the gowns I tried on were “me.” I went to numerous stores and boutiques in our area and tried on a million dresses, and literally could not find a single one I even semi-liked. By the time I scheduled an appointment with the Nordstrom Wedding Suite, I was feeling pretty defeated in my dress hunt.
Luckily when I met my Wedding Stylist, Dominika, I could tell she understood my style and what I was looking for. She introduced me to a wedding dress designer that I had never heard of, Hayley Paige. After trying on a few Hayley Paige gowns, it was between two. I wanted to wait for my mom to come in with me to make a final decision. In the meantime, I came across the Behati gown by Hayley Paige online and fell in love with it! Dominika already had another bride interested in trying on the dress, so she ordered it for both of us to try on. Needless to say, as soon as I put it on I knew it was “the one.” Dominika was there to help me every step of the way, and I truly couldn’t have done it without her!
What were some of your favorite moments from your wedding day?
My favorite moment was walking down the aisle with my dad. Like most girls, my dad is my hero and I will cherish that memory for the rest of my life.
My other favorite moment was watching our two boys walk down the aisle together as our ring bearers. Our oldest son, Laron, was responsible for carrying the rings and our youngest son, Finnian, carried a flag that said, “Daddy, here comes our girl.” It was the sweetest thing imaginable. They stole the show!
My parents’ anniversary was the day before our wedding and they were running around with us so much that they didn’t have a chance to celebrate. So at our reception after the bride and groom’s first dance, I secretly arranged for the DJ to call them up and he re-created their first dance.
Advice for brides-to-be:
Don’t try to take on too much planning on your own. People are happy to help, especially with the fun elements of wedding planning. I did most of the wedding and budget planning myself, and I freaked out a little bit a couple months before the day because I realized that I was the only one who knew the wedding-day plan! Long story short: keep someone in the loop at the very least, so you don’t go into panic mode with a million things to do and explain at the end.
Where did you honeymoon?
We decided to honeymoon in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, a fun place that neither of us had been to before. We stayed at a resort with direct ocean access, so we were at the beach most of our trip. We got the best of both worlds because Myrtle Beach has great nightlife and exploring, but it was also wonderful to be alone and relax and just enjoy each other’s company.
Photos by Avila Photography
Did you find your wedding gown or bridesmaid dresses at Nordstrom? We love a good wedding story! Email Nordstrom Wedding Stories for details on getting your wedding featured on our blog. And for more inspiration, make a complimentary appointment with a Wedding Stylist or browse our Wedding Suite.