It was more than just puppy love for Jaymie and Brad Ivler, who had their very first date at Madison Square Park’s dog run in 2009, a day after being introduced through mutual friends. The two quickly became a couple, and after three years of dating, Brad surprised his sweetheart with sand art in Washington Square Park that read: “Jaymie, will you marry me?” spelled out in glittering grains.
Life with Brad felt like a day at the beach. So Jaymie naturally said “Yes.”
The couple didn’t hire a planner for their October 2013 wedding at Fresh Meadow Country Club — despite their 260-person guest list. They did everything on their own.
“Even though it was a pretty big wedding, we wanted it to feel warm and intimate,” Jaymie explains.
They took about a year to prepare for their big day, and spent approximately three to five hours a day working on it. The first tasks they tackled were booking a venue, choosing music, and hiring a photographer.
“It was a lot of work finding a place where we were going to get married,” says Brad. “But, once all the big stuff was out of the way, we could concentrate on all the minor, more personal details.”
The pair, inspired by the parks that acted as the backdrop for their courtship and engagement, wanted their wedding to resemble a “rustic secret garden” with decorative accents that included lush greens, soft whites, candles, and branches.
One intimate element that was particularly important to Jaymie was finding the perfect dress — an elegant number with capped sleeves and vintage lace that would sway gracefully as she danced with Brad to their first song together, “Crazy Love” by Van Morrison.
Jaymie visited a few wedding salons and found the gown of her dreams at Wedding Atelier in Union Square.
“As soon as I put it on I was like ‘This is the dress for me!’ ” she says of her Suzanne Neville designer frock.
Jaymie invested a lot of time finding her ideal outfit and wanted her closest girlfriends to feel free to do the same. So, instead of choosing a uniformed dress that would flatter some figures but not all, she picked four shades: blush, champagne, mauve, and nude. The bridesmaids picked out their own dress of any kind. They just had to stick to the color palette.
“Everyone was happy and they liked how they looked,” says Jaymie.
Yet, the bride and her maids can’t take all the credit for their picture-perfect looks. The couple also credits their photographer, Sarah Tew, for making everyone look beautiful.
“She was so warm and helpful,” Jaymie recalls.
The couple is also known for having adventurous palates, and wanted their wedding to reflect their love of culinary creativity.
“We are always going to markets and checking out new restaurants,” says Jaymie. “When someone tells us of a new place in one of the boroughs, we go check it out.”
Due to their love of food, their caterer baked up a few gastronomic gems such as a pumpkin appetizer with a side of grilled cheese and a vanilla square wedding cake filled with salted caramel. Drinks such as “Brad The Groom,” which was similar to an Old Fashioned, and a mint and blueberry cocktail called “Jaymie Juice,” were also served, adding yet another signature to a very personalized — and personal — wedding.
Take care of the big stuff early. Book your venue, music, and photographer first!
It will all get done. It really will all get done.
It’s about you and your husband.
Take everyone’s suggestions into consideration but ultimately go with what you want to do.
Use the internet.
The internet is a wonderful resource. Pinterest is a great inspiration for style, colors, and ideas.
don’t stress about the details.
The small stuff is just important to you. Things may not be perfect, but don’t worry: think about the bigger picture instead.
All photos by Sarah Tew Photography.
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