Emily & Matt’s wedding took place on a scorching hot day in July that was, regardless of the heat, a complete and total dream.  These sweet and wonderful human beings explored Stonecrop Gardens with some family & their bridal party for photographs before their ceremony and were then married at Dutchess Manor.  If you have never been to Stonecrop Gardens – we HIGHLY recommend it.  Prior to their wedding day – we had never been there but have heard amazing things.  When we arrived – we were completely blown away.  Located at an elevation on 1,100 ft in the Hudson Highlands it features 15 acres of woodland, water, cliff rock, & English style gardens, a conservatory, and multiple greenhouses.

When we arrived at their getting ready locations we were welcomed with pure kindness and hospitality by them, their friends, and their families.  They were calm, poised, excited, and in great spirits.  Emily wore a gold and beaded headpiece (that she made herself!) throughout her whimsical braid.  Her bouquet was made up of dahlias, thistle (my favorite!), rubber flowers, eucalyptus, and garden roses while Matt’s boutonniere featured rosemary that smelled like heaven (there is even a photograph of her smelling it during their first look).  They chose gray suits which were perfect for the weather and the girls wore airy blue dresses that danced in the air as they walked.

As we were departing Stonecrop to head to Dutchess Manor for their ceremony, I realized I made a huge mistake (this was the first time I had EVER done this) – I locked my keys in the car.  Well… we sure as heck were not about to miss their ceremony so Brian broke a window with a rock and we were on our way.  When we arrived at Dutchess Manor for their outdoor ceremony we saw David Anthony’s absolutely gorgeous ceremony flowers.  They perfectly framed the view of the Hudson River that Dutchess Manor is so famous for.

To say Emily & Matt’s are genuine, kind, and wonderful human beings would be a huge understatement.  We are so lucky to have met them and documented their wedding day with their family and friends.  It was a moving & fun celebration of their love and their families coming together.  Their guests were oozing with joy for them and that is something that we will never get tired of witnessing.

In their words –

How you met: We went to highschool together but didn’t know each other too well. Years later, after I graduated college, my father passed away and I remember Matt reaching out saying that his father had recently passed as well and while we didn’t know each other too well, he understood what I was going through and was there if I wanted to talk. I remember thinking how kind that was and I felt like that really spoke volumes to his character.

A few months later, around the holidays, he asked me out on a date which I was very surprised by but figured eh why not and we ended up really hitting off (obviously, because now we’re married).

How you got engaged: We love to hike and Matt planned a weekend hiking trip up to Watkins Glen State Park. It’s this beautiful gorge with all sorts of paths and waterfalls along the gorge path. I remember I had stopped to take a picture of one of the waterfalls and made the joke that it was my “instagram shot”. Matt was standing behind me and said “Oh you like those rocks huh? How about this rock?” (He’s lucky his corny sense of humor is one of the things I love about him) and I turned around and he was down on one knee with a ring.

How you decided on your wedding locations: Growing up in the Hudson Valley played a big part in my decision. People sometimes don’t realize how beautiful this place is. I knew I wanted a river view and had originally picked Boscobel but all the different moving parts became a little too stressful. 9 months out from the wedding I called Dutchess Manor and they were immediately accommodating. They had recently had someone cancel on the date we had chosen and offered to have us in for a tasting the following week. Matt was sold once we did the tasting, he still raves about the food from our wedding. I also really liked how helpful everyone was and how smoothly ran. The fact that they not only handled the actual day flawlessly but even the days leading up to it really made everything a lot less stressful. A friend of mine (Shoutout Stu Carnes!) told me about Stonecrop Gardens and after looking through pictures and visiting, Matt and I really fell in love with the place. We love the outdoors and Matt has this fascination with plants (he’s a Biology teacher) so we really felt like it just kind of fit with us. And we absolutely LOVED how the pictures came out from there (especially amazing since you had never shot there before).

Wedding day priorities/vision/style: I wanted traditional but nothing crazy extravagant and wanted to stick to me and Matt’s simpler style. We also wanted to keep in mind that it was the dead of summer so thats where the flowy bridesmaides dresses and grey suits came into play. Love leafy greens which went so well with the blue bridesmaids dresses and the idea to use rosemary in the guys boutonnières. Matt had even commented on how he thought it was cool and liked the smell of it instead of a flower. I remember not being entirely sure how to explain what I wanted for flowers to David at David Anthony’s but after a 10 minute chat, he knew exactly what I wanted, it was amazing (he’s a frickin flower savant). Jamie really nailed it with my hair, her and Nicole had me feeling like fairy garden princess. Really loved that she figured out how to make the braid that I wanted work and how to incorporate the hair accessory I made.

Your favorite memories from the day: 

– Finding out you locked the keys in your car and broke your car window to get from Stonecrop to Dutchess Manor on time. Because that. Is. Dedication.

– Our first dance!

– The sunset photo time.

– And overall getting to spend the day with loved ones and being surrounded by people who were genuinely happy to be celebrating the day with us.

Photography Location : Stonecrop Gardens

Wedding Location : Dutchess Manor

Florals : Flowers by David Anthony

Hair : Hair by Jamie Boo

Beaded Braid Hairpiece : Made by the bride!

Make Up : Nicole Komondorea

Dress : Melissa Sweet

Shoes : Aldo

Suit : Jos. A. Bank

Bridesmaids Dresses : Alfred Angelo

Cake : Pastry Garden

DJ : Vargas Productions

Ceremony Harp : Kelsey Munz

Officiant : Hon. Joseph Pagones

Rings : Zales

Watches : Citizen