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Real Weddings


May 15, 2016 / Sheboygan, WI

BHLDN bride

Do you remember the first time you both said I love you?
Matt was living in Chicago; I was in Milwaukee. I took the train down to visit, and Matt was dropping me off at the station after our weekend together. We were on the El, and he told me he was in love with me right before I got off; I remember stepping onto the platform, being overwhelmed with excitement.

I told Matt that I loved him a month later; he knew first, and I so respect his bravery for articulating it the moment he felt it. I could feel it was “love soon” but waiting for the moment I really felt it was going to be worth it. When that moment came, I called into work sick because I simply couldn’t wait. I drove to Chicago, held his face in my hands, and said, “I just couldn’t wait another second without telling you that I love you so much.”

BHLDN bride
What were you thinking when you first saw your husband-to-be?
Matt promised me that he wouldn’t cry. I knew I would cry and my dad would cry, but Matt assured me, “I’ll be the rock” so I planned to look at him as I walked down the aisle. They were about to pull the curtain back and my heart was beating out of my chest—I was so excited to be marrying Matt, but you really feel the capacity of what a big deal it is as you wait for your turn down the aisle. I heard Pachelbel and was tearing up before I even stepped outside. The curtain opened, and tears were streaming from Matt’s face. That jerk! He was supposed to be the rock. My rock was melting!

Matt, describe that amazing moment.
It was the first time I couldn’t hide behind sarcasm and humor. Standing at the head of the aisle, the moment I saw Keta, I just started crying. It was this incredibly emotional day, occasion, and life milestone that we were sharing with all of our favorite people. Keta and I were getting married. I get teared up just thinking about it.

Tell us about the gown search.
The Tuesday after we were engaged, I took a taxi to BHLDN Chicago between patients. No one was with me. I saw the dress and that was it. It was really special that no one saw my gown before the wedding day. I didn’t need a squad of friends and family to guide me—I’m decisive and wanted a dress that made me feel stunning. And I felt STUNNING.

The moment I put it on in front of my mom and girls in the floral wallpapered room at Castino Mansion, tears abounded. The dress was magic, it was made for me—it has all the components of who I am (classic, whimsical, ethereal, and a little sassy) and elevated my day beyond my dreams.

BHLDN bride
Describe the location of the wedding and why you chose it—it looks beautiful!
I was searching for homes in Wisconsin that could house at least 30 people under one roof. Castino Mansion was the obvious choice. Lush and opulent, it’s a real gem with every room dressed in color, antiques, and detail. It takes you back in time thinking of the old shipping barons watching their ships on Lake Michigan from the veranda. We wanted to add a chapter to the house; our chapter of dinner parties and cocktailing, waking up slowly to the aroma of coffee and cinnamon rolls, flying kites and riding bikes, late nights by the fire, playing poker, and—most importantly—our wedding.

Amazing! Tell us how it turned out.
We wanted a carefree, relaxing weekend where we pampered our guests. All 30 people stayed with us—it was literally our favorite people under one roof. Our friends Thi Cao, executive chef of Buckley’s in Milwaukee and Greg Miesch, culinary cocktail whiz from Fion in Chicago, cooked and prepared drinks for the company. We got to talk with every single guest, laugh at old stories, and make new memories. Many of our friends are now friends! We loved waking up to the pitter-patter of ladies preparing breakfast and men throwing the football outside. Our nights ran into morning with card games, nightcaps, and laughter. What more could we want for such a monumental weekend?

Photos by Molly Jo Collection

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