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Seaside Celebration // Katie + Gus

We were so looking forward to this wedding event!  Not only is it always wonderful to film ‘down the shore’ in June, but we were also really looking forward to meeting this couple and their family… and their chosen reception venue, Congress Hall, is such a beautiful, historic gem!

Katie and Gus certainly are world travelers!  The two met in college while they were studying abroad in Venice, Italy.  We understand that Katie actually slipped and fell into the Grand Canal shortly after the two met, and Gus jumped in to save her!  Maybe that’s when their romance first started to bud?  Well, it continued to blossom over so many summers spent apart and so many adventures together.

During the start of the pandemic, Katie and Gus were living in Seattle, Washington.  One day, Gus suggested that they take a walk to one of their favorite parks.  At a scenic lookout point, Gus got down on one knee and popped the question.  Katie said ‘yes’, of course!  They walked down a path to the beach and Katie received a second surprise… her family had flown in from the East Coast to share in the joy! They all spent the rest of the weekend celebrating in a charming lake house outside the city.

On the wedding morning, Katie got ready at her parents’ home in Cape May.  She wore a chic, minimalist Suzanne Neville gown in lovely Italian crepe and organza, with a plunging V-neckline and beautiful matching open back detail.  Her dress had a delightful princess silhouette with its light, full skirt.  She wore her long hair down in lovely beach waves and accented with a sparkling hair clip and a long veil for the ceremony and photos.  And don’t overlook those crystal embellished Manolo Blahnik shoes!

congress hall wedding photo

Meanwhile, Gus and his party prepared at a rental home, the Ashley Rose Cottage, which was just a few houses up the street from Katie’s parents’.  In fact, the couple and their family rented all the homes in between for friends and family to stay close by during the weekend-long celebrations!  Gus and his groomsmen dressed into matching classic black tuxedos and they all looked fantastic.

And Katie’s bridal party looked so lovely in their light and airy sage green dresses.  Katie and her party carried such rich floral bouquets from A Garden Party, all in white and ivory, and Katie’s grand bouquet had soft baby blue accents, too.  Everyone was now dressed to the nines and ready for the day’s events!

We then headed straight to the church for the big moment when Katie and Gus made it official!  Their beautiful ceremony took place at Our Lady Star of the Sea in Cape May.  The two recited their traditional vows and exchanged rings.  Before long, they were ‘husband and wife’!

congress hall wedding photos

Afterwards, we were delighted to film while Rachel Pearlman and her second shooter, Dan, took amazing photos of the couple and their wedding party.  Of course, photos were taken outside on the lawn on this beautiful day!  And we love working with Rachel and her team, too!  Be sure to scroll down and check out some of her photos on her Facebook page!

Congress Hall was the setting for their decidedly summer-feeling wedding reception!  

We loved the fact that their reception was tented so all could enjoy the refreshing breeze and salty sea air.  Gorgeous blue and white florals were abundant on wrapped posts, overflowing urns and in table centerpieces.  

congress hall wedding images

Glowing market string lights illuminated the tent, giving it an extra romantic feeling.

Katie and Gus’s arrival was announced, and the two danced such a sweet first dance together.  

congress hall wedding image

Katie and Gus stood together as Gus gave a beautiful toast, welcoming and thanking their friends and family for sharing in their special day.  Then Katie’s mother and father highlighted the couple’s history, acknowledged special people and gave wonderful toasts to the couple, and Katie’s sisters, her maids of honor, and Gus’s brother and best man, toasted them as well.  It was so cute how Katie’s sisters shared the mic as they gave their speeches, the sweet tears that followed and the surprise performance!  And Gus’s brother’s anecdotes were equally thoughtful.

The couple cut and sampled their delicious four-tiered cake, beautifully accented with white blooms, from The Bake Works.  And dancing continued well into the night, thanks to the hip sounds of The Sultans!  Everyone stayed out on the dance floor until the after party was over!

It was such a joy to be there to celebrate with Katie and Gus and their family and to film their amazing oceanside wedding.  Congratulations to the newlyweds!  We wish them all the best as they embark on this new adventure together.

Photographer:  Rachel Pearlman Photography – Philadelphia, PA

Floral Design:  A Garden Party – Elmer, NJ

Hair Stylist:  Featherkissed Bridal – Gabby Falco – Philadelphia, PA

Makeup Artist:  Aleksandra Ambrozy Makeup & Hair Artistry – Ashley – Philadelphia, PA

Wedding Gown: Suzanne Neville

Bridal Shoes:  Manolo Blahnik

EntertainmentThe Sultans – Palm Beach Gardens, FL

Cake:  The Bake Works – Northfield, NJ

Officiant: Rev. Miles J. Barrett – Cape May, NJ

Church: Our Lady Star of the Sea – Cape May, NJ

Venue:  Congress Hall – Cape May, NJ

Accommodations:  The Ashley Rose Cottage House – Cape May, NJ

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