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Ladies, get your big girl swoon shoes on because Boy’O’boy do I have a precious gem for you!  This wedding is described as whimsical romance & does it ever deliver!  If all kinds of lovely were to be bottled up, packaged in all things wine, robin’s egg blue, & metallic gold…then man would this birdie sing!  Geneva Simms & Nathan Lavertue set out to craft their dream day, and dream big they did.  From the breathtaking venue {an active church, Landmark on The Park}, to an iconic old school NYC taxi, to a custom gown {Christian Siriano} of likes that little girls dream of, to decor infused with all things springy include little birds & butterflies!  This wedding is a modern Manhattan menagerie of new spring life busting out of its cocoon in wedding form!


What Storyboard Likes…

Whimsical Romance– The essence of spring, as a design theme, can take a person in a few potential directions.  There is so much life, so much beauty, that whiled by the wrong hand, might not translate as intended.  Such is not the case in Geneva & Nathan’s wedding!  Geneva describes beautifully the reasoning for the various design choices below, so I will refrain from double speaking.  What I will say however, is that the brightness, the lightness{of spirit}, the joy that comes from seeing new life bloom again {captured in little birdies, vibrant butterflies on beds of moss, crisp blooms & so much more} are completely captured in their day.  There is a certain energy, a joie de vivre, that is so strong that simply as  viewer of these photos, you get that.

When You Got It, Flaunt It– There is a saying that goes something along the lines of ‘You wear the dress, or the dress will wear you’ Ladies, when you have a dress… this gorgeous, this full, this FUN, damnit you own it!  Excuse my curse, but Geneva wore the shit out of this dress & I am loving every minute of it!  When you have a dress like this on, you stand just a tad bit taller, you walk with your chest just a touch more stout, and glide as you walk through a room.  Christian Siriano whipped up a dream dress that gave Geneva the confidence in her beauty.  You can tell Geneva felt like the bell of the ball, like a gorgeous woman, something all brides deserve to feel on their day.  The design was uniquely her, fulfilling both her spunky side as well as her glamorous side.  Editing down all the amazing images of just Geneva in her dress was extremely hard for me.  So much lovely to choose from makes for good problems!

Killin It In Hair & Makeup– While dresses are often the first prize seen, in truth, its the ‘supporting cast’ that can really bring a look home.  Hair & Makeup are two extremely important areas to fully bring a look to life in my opinion & craftsmen Styles On B & Sally Duvall nailed it.  From the smoothly textured locks in the half up do {along with tulle touches!} to the superb makeup, these two elements are what truly help Geneva achieve her glamour spunk wedding day look.  I really encourage you ladies to take a good look at the close up image of Geneva, taking in the makeup.  It is simply divine.  Highlighting the proper areas, down playing those appropriate, this my friends is what heavenly wedding day makeup looks like!


Novella of the Bride…

Our wedding had a whimsical romance feel.  We both wanted to get married in New York City in the spring when the weather is mild and all of the blossoming trees were in full bloom, so we chose to get married in late April.  We incorporated Dogwood branches in our decor as Dogwood symbolizes love undiminished by adversity. Also, we wanted our space to feel like the outdoors had been brought indoors and incorporated very realistic looking faux birds and butterflies throughout our decor: the escort card table was moss and flats of grass, each escort card was attached to a butterfly; each favor was a sinew lidded box sitting in a bird’s nest with a bird attached to the lid of the box.  Inside each box were two pieces of handmade candy from our hometowns: peanut butter and chocolate buckeye candies from Bellbrook Chocolates in my home town in Ohio and Maple Candy leaves from Nathan’s home town in New Hampshire.  The color palette was maroon/wine, robin’s egg blue, and metallic gold.  My florist even spray painted olive branches metallic gold and placed them in our bouquets as well as the center pieces.

We both wanted a sacred space, but neither of us are affiliated with a religion.  Landmark on the Park is a perfect venue because it is a gorgeous neogothic Universalist church that still functions as a church, but also hosts events.  Many of our guests traveled to be here from out of state, so we wanted a venue where we could have both the ceremony and reception.  The staff at Landmark is incredible and has the space  turnaround time down to a science.  Also, it’s located on the west side of Central Park close to Strawberry Fields, so Nathan and I were able to go to Central Park for photos while our guests enjoyed cocktail hour.

Nathan and I wanted someone close to us to act as our officiant.  My brother, a decorated veteran who has served twice in Iraq, was ordained and performed the ceremony for us.  We wrote our ceremony and our vows, so it was incredibly personal.  We had two friends read pieces we selected and Nathan’s sister also did a reading.  My dress was designed by my close friend and bridesman, Christian Siriano.  When I went to my dress consultation, I had my ideas and brought along photographs from a few dresses I had seen.  I mentioned that I wanted the dress to be dramatic, but glamorous ala Mrs. Havisham from “Great Expectations.” The dress was unbelievable! It only took him 30 seconds to sketch and he got it right on the first attempt. Also, I didn’t want to wear a typical white dress, so we incorporated gold into the dress to match the color scheme.  My florist was  friend Nadine Partridge of Nadine Partridge Designs and she did an incredible job with our flowers and decor. We went to the flower market in Chelsea together to look at and choose all of the elements;  she translated everything I wanted so perfectly. Our caterer was referred to us by Christian as he’s worked with them on several events throughout the years. Bonnie Altholz, who heads up the events department at Certe, worked with us to give us a custom menu for our guests.  Bonnie previously worked for Sylvia Weinstock and offered to be our cake designer, too!  The cake was a custom cake based on the ideas we gave Bonnie.  It was a multi-tier cake with metallic gold fondant icing that had sugar flowers, in our color palette, wrapped around the cake. Two birds were perched on the top and the Chrysler Building, my favorite NYC building, sat as an element next to it, mixing our country/city lives.

My mom enlisted several of her friends to help put together the ceremony programs Nathan and I designed which was a huge help!  My mom and I are really close. There is no way we could have pulled this off without her.  As a surprise for me, she had my grandparents’ wedding bands sautered on either side of a garnet and diamond ring.  My grandparents passed away a few years ago and I really wished they could have been there on the big day.  I wore their rings when I walked down the aisle to honor their memory and relationship.  They had been married for over 60 years when my grandmother passed away.   Nathan’s mother designed a stunning candy bar for our guests…it really was beautiful!  My mentor and one of my college professors, Dr. Barnaby Ruhe, is  a very talented portrait artist.  He coined the term “portrait marathon” and has done days long portrait marathons.  His portraits only take 10-15 minutes and they are brilliant! He sketched/painted each of our guests and gave them to the guests as a gift from us.

Bride’s Favorite Moments: “This one is tough because there were so many!  I would have to say it was at the end of our ceremony when we surprised our guests with an accappella version of Whitney Houston’s “My Love is Your Love.”  It was sung by Kim Summers who has the most gorgeous voice. She was standing behind our guests in the choir loft, so the guests had no idea it was happening!  Also, I loved the moments we had together driving in the vintage cab through the city and in Central Park after the ceremony.  I recommend some alone time for all new couples immediately following their ceremony.  We had a chance to debrief and just enjoy the moment as a newly married couple.”


Vendor Love

Venue: Landmark on The Park | Wedding Dress: Christian Siriano | Bridesmaid Dresses: David’s Bridal | Shoes: Christian Louboutin | Hair: Styles On B | Makeup: Sally Duvall | Groom’s Suit: Eli Tahari | Groom’s Custom VestChristian Siriano | Florist: Nadine Partridge Designs | Caterer: Certe NYC | Baker: Certe NYC | Music: Ceremony Vocal Soloist Kim Summers/45 Riots | Music: String Quartet, Innocenti String Quartet {Ceremony, Cocktails} | Music: DJ Agent Trevor/74 Events {Reception} | Transportation: Film Cars | Portrait Artist: Barnaby Ruhe | Photobooth: Classic Photo Booth | Wedding/Event Planner: Exquisite Affairs Productions | Photographer: Lina Jang/Jang Photographers