How Stephanie and Paul Met | The couple met at a dinner party that Paul and his roommates were hosting at their college apartment in 2007. Steph was sick with a cold and had actually taken some medicine and gone to bed early. Soon after however, she got a call from two of her friends saying “It’s Spring Fest! Come to this Cinco de Mayo party with us!” So they picked her up and ended up taking her to Paul’s party where they ate fun food, hit a piñata, and watched their friend Jimmy perform some awesome magic tricks. The following year their friendship grew as they worked on Student Government and took the Massage and Latin Ballroom wellness classes together. In December 2008 they officially starting dating.
How They Got Engaged | On Saturday, September 23, 2017, Paul and Steph decided to go for a hike at Mendon Ponds with Row, their energetic and adorable Australian Shepherd. When Row is on a trail, she has one speed: fast! Typically, Paul will sprint ahead with Row while Steph takes her time at a more relaxed pace. Often, Paul will stop with Row and wait for Steph before they take off again around a bend. On this specific day, Steph picked the Southern Meadow 3 mile trail. As usual, Row and Paul sprinted ahead. When Steph rounded a bend she found Paul and Row waiting for her. Paul pretended to drop a treat to Row when in actuality it was a ring. He bent down to pick up the ring (as Row came to check out the scene – he was afraid she would eat the ring) and got down on one knee and asked Steph to marry him. They were the only people on the trail that warm, sunny day and were able to spend the rest of their walk embracing this intimate moment in a solitude that only nature can provide.
The Unique & Non-Traditional Elements | The couple follows a plant based diet and they love to cook together, so for the wedding it was important to have a completely plant based (vegan) menu. Though it may not be the most popular decision for all of the guests, Steph and Paul wanted the day to be a complete representation of their relationship. Taking it a step further, Paul made square business cards with a website that linked to different plant based recipes that they have created or use regularly as a favor for every guest. The front had their picture and said “Paul and Steph’s Plant Based Recipes – http://bit.ly/PaulAndSteph” and the back had different photos of various meals/food items they have created in the past. This was an aspect of the wedding that Paul was especially passionate about and excited to share their love of plant powered food with family and friends.
How They Made The Wedding Their Own | The ceremony, the flowers, and food are what stand out as unique aspects of the wedding. The ceremony took place onsite at the Arbor Loft and was officiated by Willie Osterman. Willie is a photographer that Steph works with at RIT and they absolutely loved working with him on they ceremony. It was earthy, mindful, and the words were a reflection of the couple and their relationship. The couple felt the ceremony completely captured the sentiment they were going for.
The flowers were designed by Nicole Beyrle from I Do Wedding Flowers. Both she and her husband, Chris, were absolutely fantastic and lovely to work with. They knew the ceremony space would need some type of décor/decoration, and originally, Steph had the thought of a single round arbor as a ceremony backdrop. After talking about the concept more with Nicole, she brought up the idea of many circles of varying sizes that would hang against the wall. The asymmetry of this concept was fabulous, and everyone was thrilled to see the idea come to life. It was a beautiful focal point for the ceremony, the photos, and the guests.
As mentioned previously, a plant based meal was extremely important to Steph and Paul. For the catering menu, Jackie at Orange Glory was totally open to the concept and up for the challenge. She flawlessly incorporated the ideas for the menu and they couldn’t have been happier with the end result.
Favorite Wedding Day Moments | During the ceremony, when it was time for Paul to repeat his vows he had a moment of uncontrollable nervous laughter which in turn triggered Steph to laugh. Steph absolutely loved this moment (though Paul may not say the same thing). It was absolutely a real moment that was so endearing, raw and spontaneously unexpected and so they both just ran with it. It will always be one of Steph’s favorite memories of the day. Additionally, seeing the menu and the decor come together while sharing the time with friends and family was very special. It was a stress-free, fun day. How wonderful that they can look back on such a special time and know they truly had the time of their lives.
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