Our Boston Public Library Wedding

Today’s post is very personal, and I’m so excited to finally share it with you guys: our wedding at the Boston Public Library. After being together for over 10 years, Nick and I tied the knot in the city where we met and started a life together. The majority of our friends and family are from out of town (and the country) so we wanted to show them Boston and everything we love here. We only visited one venue and knew right away that was it. The BPL embodies the history and charm of the city, and has a lot of meaning to us in little ways…we studied there together as college students, dug up the blueprints (from ~150 years ago!) of our first home together, walked by it daily to work, and to top it off, Nick’s mom is a librarian.

 

And here begins an overload of photos from the course of our day. Also, I wanted to share a few more of our favorite vendors for any brides-to-be planning a wedding!

boston library wedding flowers

Wedding Photographer & Videographer

After the venue came the search for a photographer and videographer. We assumed the day would be a whirlwind, and felt there’d be no better way to capture the sentiment and movement of everything (or in this case, our blubbering exchange of vows ; ) than on video. I feel this is a vendor that’s often overlooked and thought of second to photography, but was top on our priority list. We chose Long Haul Films based on recommendations from friends and could not have been happier (update: unfortunately, they no longer do weddings!). I wanted to repost their trailer video that they make for each wedding – we love how they incorporated the vintage inspirations from ours by using an old school Super 8 film camera for part of the footage.

Long Haul Films has offices in Boston, LA, and London but travels globally, and our photographer Katch Studios is based out of Edmonton, Canada. Both were a dream to work with. After initial meetings about our style and sharing of Pinterest boards and other inspiration, we were able to trust both teams fully on our wedding day.

boston library lazaro lace wedding gown

Our Florist

Pollen Floral Design (based in Boston but also does global projects) was another friend’s recommendation. We were very last minute with planning – I mentioned vaguely what I liked and the color scheme (soft ivory, pink, and a hint of french blue) and she completely ran with it. We got so many compliments on her bouquets and hairpieces!

wedding floral hair combs

manolo blahnik something blue jeweled wedding shoes

Something Blue (Wedding Shoes!)

I searched high and low for open-toed “something blue” shoes but couldn’t find any that were right. I ended up getting these Manolo Blahniks (here’s a very similar pair for under $100!), and borrowed a friend’s idea of DIY stitching bracelets to them as temporary embellishments.

east meets west chinese wedding dress

bridal robe getting ready shot

Bridal Hair & Makeup

Hair was first on my schedule for the day. I partnered with the TRESemmé team on both of my bridal hairstyles and absolutely loved the results! I had requested an updo first for the tea ceremony and a romantic, hair down-to-the-side look for the wedding. I wanted a clean look to show off the high neckline of my tea ceremony dress, and then loose curls to frame the shoulders for my strapless wedding gown. My TRESemmé stylist, Tyler Laswell, started by curling all of my hair and teasing volume up at the top. He then styled it into a twisted braid low-bun set a little off to the side.

wedding hair braided side bun updo

After the tea ceremony, Tyler transitioned my hair by leaving the volume up at the top and letting out the bun, which fell into those side-swept waves I wanted. We used a fresh floral comb made by my florist as the finishing accent in both looks.

boston library wedding getting ready

I was nervous in my search for a makeup artist as I’ve had several poor experiences in the past. The artists I had worked with before were often not familiar with playing up smaller, hooded eyes and short, stick-straight lashes. I went with Lisa Chy, another friend referral, and would highly recommend her in return. I did a trial with her during which we spent a lot of time working on the right look, plus I got to test out a full day wearing the makeup to note any issues (even watched a good ol’ sad movie to test the eye makeup lasting power ; )

boston library wedding lazaro lace dress

A few makeup tips for fellow brides – it was my first time trying airbrush makeup and I loved it for several reasons. When applied properly, it has: 1. awesome, build-able coverage that kept my face from becoming purple and splotchy when tearing up (this was a priority as I’m an ugly crier, through and through!); 2. actually felt light and “air”y to me; and 3. I found it to rub off a little less than regular foundation. Lisa also used it to mitigate some stark tan lines on my back and shoulders and I didn’t get too much color transfer onto my dress. On the eye makeup front, I don’t love strip falsies so Lisa used “flares” or singles lashes which I thought looked and felt better. They are applied one-by-one and can easily be layered based on how full you want them.

bridesmaid gifts chanel earrings

First Look: Copley Square

We had our first look behind Trinity church, which was a surprisingly quiet respite during a bustling afternoon in Copley Square.

boston wedding trinity church first look lazaro dress

The Groom & Groomsmen Outfits

I left the guys’ stuff up to Nick and in true guys’ fashion, found ourselves 2 weeks before the wedding with unclothed groom and groomsmen. For affordable skinny ties and smaller-sized bowties in every color imaginable, The Tie Bar was a lifesaver.

boston wedding trinity church

boston library wedding bhldn lazaro

Unique Details

The Boston Public Library doesn’t need much dressing up, but we wanted to include a few small touches here and there to make the day feel uniquely ours. We got antique props, including these suitcases and gold mirrored vanity trays, from SOWA vintage market. We both love digging there on the weekends for small treasures. And below that, we stole an idea from a few friends’ weddings to serve treats before the ceremony. We had our caterers, The Catered Affair, make mini matcha green tea and mango ice cream cones for guests to enjoy while getting seated—a great way to cool off during a hot summer wedding.

boston library wedding vintage suitcases welcome sign

 

wedding mini ice cream cones

The processional ~ I’ve never seen my sweet grandparents so dressed up! And I thought Nick’s mom looked darling in her Eliza J fit & flare dress (comes in petites).

wedding processional grandparents

My mother had her hands full with my elementary school-aged brother trotting by her side!

mother of the bride sue wong dress

The Bridesmaid Dresses

I was swooning at my bridesmaids’ mix-and-match BHLDN dresses and bouquets. I worked with each of them to pick a style that flattered their body type, staying within our general theme of champagne and blush pink. We included a mix of beading, sequins, lace, and a statement necklace (recognize this Baublebar piece? : ) for the solid dress.

bhldn bridesmaid dresses bouquets

boston library courtyard wedding dress aisle

boston library courtyard wedding dress

We had our first dance later up on the Juliet balcony while two of our close friends sang and played a slower acoustic guitar version of “Love me like you do” – it was one of the few tunes that Nick and I could agree on…little does he know what movie it’s from, ha!

boston library courtyard wedding vows

Our recessional was to “Everything is Awesome” from the Lego movie, which little brother Schuyler thoroughly enjoyed…

recessional dance

The Food!

We probably spent the most time planning out the menu and the least amount of time enjoying it…looking back, we probably would’ve skipped extra photos to join our guests! During cocktail hour we had mini truffled chicken pot pies, mini lobster rolls, and the most exciting to me – the DIY noodle bar. As a noodle enthusiast, I was salivating thinking of the options (udon, soba, or lo mein noodles with garlic chicken, spicy thai steak, ginger lime shrimp, veggies, and a variety of sauces and toppings). Most of our guests were full before dinnertime due to multiple helpings at this station.

asian noodle bar wedding

boston library wedding placecards1

Library-Themed Wedding Cards

Our paper items and signage were all created by Yours Truly Calligraphy, another friend’s referral (clearly, we couldn’t have planned this wedding without the help of our married friends!). In a panic, I reached out her just a few days before our wedding and she whipped up everything and had it express mailed from the West coast. She even hand-made these antiquated library cards, stained using tea.

wedding calligraphy bar signs

mini donuts stand wedding cake

My Wedding Dress & Veil

From the dresses in my closet, I’m sure you guys can tell I love a good lace and fitted pencil silhouette. On my wedding day, I wanted those same elements but with a little more drama, and this Lazaro dress (Style #3415) had everything I was looking for. I got a size 2 with hollow-to-hem customization, which is when they measure your height and then create the entire dress to be scaled lengthwise proportionate to that height. For ladies who are significantly shorter or taller than a sample size, I’d highly recommend this option if your gown designer offers it. I was pleasantly surprised that a bridal size 2 was completely fitted on me at the bust, waist, and hips with no alterations needed! The bottom skirted portion is very full so I did have a local tailor reduce that volume on both sides and also taper in the knee area (note: this was a pretty significant alteration given the amount of fabric). I also had them leave the lace flower corsages off while producing the gown, so I could addd them back on where I wanted them, along the back train.

boston library wedding bates hall1

My birdcage veil and sash belt were both easy DIY projects (UPDATE: here is my video tutorial on how to make both!). Being a true procrastinator, it was stressful working on these the day before our wedding, but it was worth it to be able to wear pieces that I made.

boston library wedding lazaro gown

My best advice for brides-to-be is that although the planning process can be stressful and a lot of things will go awry, never forget what you are doing it for and try to let go of the small stuff. I also wanted to give a heartfelt thank you to each one of you who shared kind words and congratulations on our marriage – Nick and I read every message and it means so much to us.

Our vendors:
Videographer: Long Haul Films
Photographer: Katch Studios
Wedding gown: Lazaro Style #3415
Tea ceremony dress: custom by Khatu Ho
Reception dress: Aidan Mattox (exact sold out) sz 0 hemmed
Bridal accessories: vintage earrings, DIY belt & veil (purchase similar veil)
Floral robes thanks to Plum Pretty Sugar
Bridesmaid dresses thanks to BHLDN
Florist: Pollen Floral Design
Hair in partnership with TRESemmé
Makeup: Lisa Chy
Tuxedo: J.Crew Ludlow
Men’s accessories: The Tie Bar 
DJ: Alamada Events
Lighting: Design Light Co
Tea ceremony coordination: Lemon Drop
Catering & day-of coordination: The Catered Affair
Mini donuts: Union Square Donuts
Bridal suite: Judy Garland suite at the Lenox
Venue: Boston Public Library

Previous wedding-related posts: you can read about Nick’s proposal here, our engagement photos in Paris here, our coed bridal shower here, and our Chinese wedding tea ceremony here!

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216 Comments

  1. Wanderlust wrote:

    Awww Jean! You made this ugly crier even uglier – I was in tears the whole time watching the video. Many blessings to you and Nick. One can only wish for a partnership like the one you guys share. xoxo

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  2. Cee wrote:

    So, so beautiful, Jean! *wipes tears from my eyes* I'm so glad Nick convinced you to have a wedding 😉 Every detail and personal touch were simply perfect. Everyone looked gorgeous. Wishing you both a lifetime of happiness!!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  3. Beautiful post Jane. Thanks for sharing!-lyn

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  4. Anonymous wrote:

    One of the most beautiful weddings i have ever seen!!! You looked breathtaking! While i was going through the photos, all i thought was Pinterest! xxx

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  5. First of all CONGRATULATIONS!! It looks like your wedding was like a dream come true. I love all the little details and the venue is gorgeous! I'm actually planning my wedding and yesterday we choose our venue! It's such an exciting process!! We are the first of our friends to get married so we are a little short on recommendations but just looking at your pictures and how happy you both look is a huge inspiration!!

    Thanks so much for sharing!!

    Xo
    Pauline

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  6. Congratulations on your beautiful love story journey and marriage! Thank you for sharing this video and photos with your readers. The vows were so touching and made me reflect on my wedding day as well. 🙂 My husband, who has zero interest in fashion, knows your blog because I follow it so much! Wishing you and Nick a lifetime of happiness!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  7. Anonymous wrote:

    Absolutely beautiful wedding! Congratulations! Could you please tell me where your post-wedding/reception beaded dress is from. Thanks!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  8. Raven Hill wrote:

    Absolutely perfect. Love everything!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  9. Tiffany wrote:

    Congratulations! So happy to finally see this post 🙂 You were the most beautiful bride. Loved every detail. Wishing you and Nick a lifetime of love and happiness. <3

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  10. A huge congratulations! And, of course, you looked very beautiful.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  11. Elizabeth wrote:

    Wow – absolutely beautiful! Your vows to each other were precious!!!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  12. such a beautiful wedding! where did you get your last dress from — the beaded long dress? it was so, so beautiful!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  13. Mei Liang wrote:

    Thank you for sharing with us your special day. You look absolutely stunning and the venue is beautiful! Congratulations!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  14. Anonymous wrote:

    Your vows are so moving! I teared up after watching the video. As a long time (silent) reader, I wish you and Nick a happy long life together–growing up with a partner is the most beautiful thing in a relationship. Best luck Jean and Nick!

    Joyce

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  15. Unknown wrote:

    Beautiful! As a photographer, I've never prioritized wedding videos, but your video is beautiful and makes me think I might need to have that at my wedding!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  16. Anonymous wrote:

    your food pics never fail to make me jealous! Congratulations, you look absolutely beautiful and so happy!

    -minnie

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  17. Theresa wrote:

    Congratulations Jean and thanks for sharing your beautiful story with us! The video got my eyes rather moist.I loved the reasons for choosing the library as the location. My father is a librarian and spent a majority of my childhood at libraries.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  18. Anonymous wrote:

    You are such a great writer! What a modern and classy lady you are! I enjoy your writing as well as your outfit and style! Hope you continue to enjoy your life with Nick with your value and sense!

    Best wishes,

    Helena Lin

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  19. ETL wrote:

    Beautiful wedding and photos. Love all your small touches and ideas. Your wedding dress is beautiful too. So inspirational.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  20. Just such a beautiful beautiful wedding. I enjoyed watching the video and definitely teared up!! Your dress is so stunning, I really love the shape and style. Thank you for sharing with us and hope you and Nick have an amazing life together!!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  21. Unknown wrote:

    Thank you for sharing the details of your beautiful day!!! What a heartwarming video. Congratulations to both of you!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  22. Eileen wrote:

    Jean, this is magnificent beyond words! Thank you for sharing such a personal event. Congratulations to you and Nick! I wish you both a lifetime of happiness.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  23. AB wrote:

    Beautiful day, Jean! I'm currently planning my wedding. Out of curiosity, how many people did you invite, and, for catering purposes, how many did you plan on actually attending? Thanks!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  24. Van wrote:

    Hi Jean! Congratulations! Everything looks perfect 🙂 Would love and very much appreciate tutorials on the veil and sash! 🙂

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  25. I'm so thankful that you've posted this blog up about your wedding. I love every detail of how you incorporated yourselves into your wedding. I would love to see your DIY Sash when you get a chance to post the blog. As I'm planning my own wedding, reading your blog helps me ease a little of my stress. Thank you again, and you're a beautiful bride!!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  26. Holy cow! Jean I almost cried at my desk. Such a beautiful video and story. I loved every single detail that went into this wedding and you guys are just a match made in heaven. Wishing you both an amazing lifetime ahead 🙂 – @misschristie

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  27. Briannac0 wrote:

    Beautiful third dress! Can you tell me where it's from? I'm looking for one similar for my wedding reception. Thanks!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  28. L Breault wrote:

    Most stunning wedding ever.. everything is so beautiful. The video is excellent! Congratulations!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  29. Anonymous wrote:

    It is so beautiful!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  30. Unknown wrote:

    Amazing and magical! Congrats! I'm getting married in less than 2 months and your video was so inspiring! I would love to watch a tutorial on how you did your birdcage veil please!! Love, Beatriz – UK/Brazil

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  31. Anonymous wrote:

    What a beautiful wedding! The video is so touching that it made me tear up. Wish you two forever happiness!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  32. ReRa wrote:

    Congratulations! What a beautiful and sweet wedding. Wishing you all the happiness in the world!
    I would love to incorporate a Chinese tea ceremony into my future wedding. I was wondering what your timeline was like for that? How much time did you give yourself between that and your ceremony? What did your guests do while they were waiting for the ceremony to start?

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  33. Thanh wrote:

    What a beautiful wedding! Thank-you for sharing those precious moments with us.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  34. Congrats you two! What lovely vows you both had to one another. Beautiful beautiful ceremony!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  35. Talia wrote:

    Absolutely beautiful! I loved every bit of this post. Wishing you and Nick much happiness!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  36. Yes to the tutorial for the birdcage veil!!

    Any wise words from a procrastinator to a procrastinator? We haven't set a date, yet, but set a season and year, Spring 2017.

    I can definitely feel the love from the pictures. (At work and can't play the video) :X

    Congratulations, again. Wish you guys lots of love, happiness and kids!! 🙂

    -oanh

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  37. Congratulations on a beautiful wedding. May you and your new spouse be blessed in all that you do! Thanks for your beautiful posts!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  38. Huong wrote:

    Wow, Jean! Out of a lot of weddings I've seen, your and Nick's seems to be the most well-thought out and planned event. I'm a huge believer in making weddings both the bride and groom's day. I feel like it was an event planned by the couple together rather than just the bride, which is what I see most of the time. The details, photos, DIYs here and there and the noodle bar really made your day all the more special and stand out from the rest. I'll definitely be pinning a lot on my wedding boards for future reference if my day ever comes. 😉 You made a gorgeous bride and Nick a handsome groom. Congratulations again! xo

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  39. Thanks so much for sharing this, Jean. You gown is gorgeous. Seriously, jaw-dropping. After reading your blog for years I also feel like you picked the perfect gown to suit your personality, too. Also, as a bibliophile, I couldn't be more jealous of your venue. Congratulations!

    lifestyle by joules

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  40. Jean – you were a gorgeous bride! I love it all, but my favorite is your dress 🙂 Just as your said, it is a perfect wedding day version of your signature style! XO, Amanda @ life on linton

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  41. Congratulations! You look so beautiful. I hope you two are having a wonderful time together as a married couple!

    xx, Diane || http://www.dizined.com

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  42. Anonymous wrote:

    Congratulations on your wedding! Thanks for sharing your beautiful wedding photos and wish you many happy years to come! You two complete each other, absolutely beautiful couple. Looking forward to seeing your beautiful baby 😉

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  43. Anonymous wrote:

    beautiful, just beautiful. I wish you both continued fun and togetherness.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  44. That was so amazing! Very touching. Very much reminded me of our vows we took 11 years ago. You guys are a beautiful couple with a beautiful family. Really brought back alot of memories and goose bumps. Congratulations to you both and to your amazing future!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  45. Patricia wrote:

    Gorgeous! Wishing all the best to you and Nick. =)

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  46. Melanie wrote:

    Jean and Nick — many congrats on your wedding! I couldn't hold back the tears when watching the video and thank you for sharing your day with the rest of us. Here's to many more journeys ahead of you together. Lots of love, Melanie

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  47. Linna wrote:

    Jean, you and Nick look so beautiful! I loved everything about your wedding – congratulations!!!!!!

    I would love to see a tutorial of the DIY sash, as I myself am dress shopping and find myself gaping at the prices for belts and veils. Thanks!!!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  48. Ann wrote:

    So hauntingly beautiful! Every detail is perfect– and you look so beautiful Jean!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  49. Melissa wrote:

    Congrats Jean and Nick, it was such a pleasure to get to know you and to work together.

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply
  50. Anonymous wrote:

    Congratulations, Jean and Nick!! You both had such a beautiful wedding. May the Lord blesses you both on your new Journey as husband and wife!! Thanks for sharing your life with us. Soooooooo beautiful! I cried!

    Posted 9.24.15 Reply

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