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!

 

213 thoughts on “Our Boston Public Library Wedding

  • Anonymous September 26, 2015 at 5:00 pm

    Yep – I definitely cried watching the video. Amazingly beautiful. So full of love. Thank you so much for putting yourselves out there in showing us this video, pictures, and love story. Congratulations!

  • Anonymous September 26, 2015 at 6:16 pm

    THIS IS TOO CUTE! The video made me tear up! I hope your marriage is even more beautiful than your ceremony turned out to be~ Congratulations!

  • Rosebud Ben-Oni September 26, 2015 at 6:34 pm

    Your trailer made me (and my husband) tear up. Mazel tov!

  • Deasy Noel September 27, 2015 at 12:38 am

    These photos are absolutely beautiful! I love that you had your venue at a library <3 You and your husband look so stunning, and I absolutely love your dress!!!

    http://www.deasynoel.com

  • julia0936 September 27, 2015 at 1:29 am

    恭喜

  • jenn September 27, 2015 at 11:05 am

    Congratulations to you and Nick! You two had such a beautiful wedding, and you looked stunning! You've been such an inspiration, and I'm so happy that everything turned out perfectly. Cheers to the married life! <3

  • Liz September 27, 2015 at 3:20 pm

    what a beautiful film. congrats!

  • Julie Huynh September 28, 2015 at 12:47 am

    Beautiful wedding! I hope you two the best as husband and wife! I loved the cover version your friend did for your first dance (hehe to the him not knowing it came from Fifty) I was totally fangirling the week of your wedding on Vy's instagram. Happy marriage and congrats Mrs. Jean!

  • pardeeconcepts September 28, 2015 at 12:16 pm

    A lovely wedding! Congratulations to you both!

  • Anonymous September 28, 2015 at 1:33 pm

    Congratulations! Aside from your regular posts on this blog and on Instagram, I appreciate this post so much. Not only you and Nick make stunning couple but the details of your wedding including photos, entire wardrobe, colors, traditions, location, placecards, etc.. absolutely well put together! Thank you so much for sharing!

  • Joyce Pak September 30, 2015 at 6:21 pm

    I love, love, love all the details of your wedding. Starting from the venue, to your story with Nick, to your dress (you look so good in a mermaid, it gives me hope since I'm on the short side and love mermaid dresses), to the donuts and all the photos and bridesmaids dresses, it's so, so pretty! 🙂 I've been waiting to see your wedding pics since I've seen posts in IG and your engagement photos, so I'm glad that you finally got them back.

    Characters & Carry-ons

  • Helena A. October 2, 2015 at 6:48 pm

    Oh My God!!! You were both gorgeous!!!!!!!!!!!! You were stunning!!!!!!!!!!!! Loved all the details of your marriage! Please, can you show the DIY of your belt, shoes, and veil?
    Loved that you both have chosen a library for your big day!!!!!!!!!!!
    I wish you all the best!!!
    Kisses from Portugal!!!

  • Adriana October 4, 2015 at 12:15 pm

    This was beautiful!!!! You looked absolutely stunning! Congrats to you and Nick! 🙂 I wish you both a lifetime of happiness!

  • Angela Bonanza October 6, 2015 at 9:42 am

    These photos are like a dream! I hope you had a wonderful time and that you and Nick enjoy a loving and happy marriage <3. And your little bro has such a cool name!

  • Emily Morales October 8, 2015 at 10:18 am

    I'm so happy for you both! Wishing you guys all the best! 🙂

  • EM!LY October 10, 2015 at 12:50 am

    This is the most beautiful wedding I've ever seen, thank you so much for sharing your personal moment. (I cried during Nick's voiceover!) I've been reading your blog for quite some time, and I remember reading the first time Nick posted on your page as a guest! I have a personal question/advice request (please don't answer if it's uncomfortable), but I have been with my boyfriend for over 8 years now, and I don't think he's going to propose any time soon.. I've never brought it up, and I wouldn't say I'm the type to have my wedding planned on pinterest already, but after such a long time, a girl has to wonder… Plus everyone I know is getting married or engaged. I'm thinking it's time to move on… But. I don't know. Is there a reason you guys/Nick waited? Seeing your relationship over the years, it seems as though you guys were already married (living together, solid relationship/friendship together, big part of each others lives, etc).

  • V October 10, 2015 at 10:30 am

    Hi Jean! Congratulations to you and Nick! Everything about the wedding was gorgeous! I'm getting married next year and the the Lazaro you wore is my totally dream dress! Would you mind telling me how much retail price is for the dress?

  • Beautifully Seaside // Formerly Chic Coastal Living October 18, 2015 at 9:04 am

    WOW! that video made me cry! So precious and you are such a beautiful couple! May the Lord bless and may His face shine upon you all the days of your life! Congratulations! XOXOXO

  • Laura's Choices October 20, 2015 at 11:25 am

    Hi! Yes would love to see the DIY for the bird cage and sash. I am recently engaged also and am just trying to get gather all the ideas I can.

  • Anonymous October 23, 2015 at 6:52 pm

    Hi Jean,

    Beautiful wedding, beautiful video and beautiful everything! This is the second time I've actually seen your wedding video and the background music really caught my attention this time. Would you mind telling me which song this is? Would love to add it to my work playlist!

    Thanks so much.
    xx
    Danielle

  • kellie lemmel October 26, 2015 at 6:44 am

    Hi Jean,

    Beautiful wedding photos! I am getting married in May and have purchased the same gown. There are some things on the dress I do not love and it looks like you changed the things I don't like. Did you move some of the flowers from the front to the back along with some tulle? I would like to have my dress altered to look like yours.

    Thank you so much for your help!!
    Kellie

  • Jean October 28, 2015 at 10:05 pm

    Hi Kellie – congrats on your upcoming wedding! Yes I had my gown made with the corsages detached, and then I sewed them back on placing them exactly where I wanted them. Also, yes I had my tailor detach the majority of the tulle off the bottom except the front center (so that it's kept in place and not totally removed), and then had him "shift" the volume towards the back by making it gathered less tightly and fully. Once volume was shifted to the back he removed about a 2 yard long piece of tulle from the back center and then re-attached the entire skirt. It was NOT an easy alteration unfortunately and pretty costly. Good luck!

  • Jean October 28, 2015 at 10:07 pm

    Thanks, Danielle! The music is the instrumental version of "For You" by Luke & Laura.

  • Jean October 28, 2015 at 10:09 pm

    Hi V – congrats on your upcoming marriage! I got my dress a year ago so prices have likely changed, also I got adjustments done to it like hollow to hem so in the end I don't even know what retail of the dress alone is. My best suggestion is to go on Lazaro's site and find a retailer locator and just call and ask. Best wishes to you in wedding planning!

  • Jean October 28, 2015 at 10:13 pm

    Hi Emily – I totally understand where you're coming from! Nick didn't propose until year 9 I believe ; ) I definitely think it's something you guys should discuss openly, or at least you should start the conversation. Everyone moves towards marriage at their own pace, and some guys are just slower than others even though I'm sure they have thought about it. We waited for many reasons including wanting to be at a more stable point in both our careers as well as financially, but of course I had started to wonder after some point in time! It helped to talk about it, and well, I also thought it was worth finding out sooner rather than later if the guy had no intent on marriage at all.

  • Carol Tsui November 5, 2015 at 3:39 pm

    Hi Jean,

    I am a big fan of yours and have been following you for many, many years. I am getting married next year in May, 2016 and I have been trying to find the right dress with not much luck at all due to my petite size and not a whole lot of budget. I am very petite just like you and I am a little under 5 feet. I wear size xxsp or double 0 depends on the clothes. I love, love love your wedding gown and you look STUNNING in it. I am wondering if you are selling your dress by any chance? It would mean the world to me if you would be willing to sell your dress to me. If you are willing, would you mind to contact me at c_ytsui@yahoo.com? I look forward to hearing from you.

    Thank you very much for your time in reading this post. Love you – Carol

  • Sam November 6, 2015 at 6:47 am

    Yes. It looks really incredible.

  • Joyce November 17, 2015 at 2:55 pm

    Congrats on the beautiful wedding! I'm curious if you have decided what to do with the wedding dress (sell, keep, etc). I'm thinking of selling mine and was wondering if you have any insight into selling petite-sized wedding dresses in the secondhand market, or if other readers have had any experience doing so.

  • Jean November 18, 2015 at 12:25 pm

    Hi Carol ~ I'm so sorry but my dress isn't available for sale…congrats on your wedding and I wish you and your husband all the best! I hope you get to relax and enjoy the wedding gown shopping process, even if on a budget. Have you checked out preownedweddingdresses.com or tradesy?

  • Jean November 18, 2015 at 12:27 pm

    Hi Joyce! My friends have just used preownedweddingdresses.com or tradesy, after cleaning and preserving their dress for the next person. I browsed for quite a bit on there for pre-owned options (since you can sort by size) before buying mine new only because the style and size I needed wasn't available on there.

  • Thi November 19, 2015 at 10:21 am

    Dear Jean, can you PLEASE do an in-depth tutorial on the DIY headpiece/veil that you wore? My wedding is next year and I would love to be able to make one! Xx

  • Jasmin November 24, 2015 at 1:14 pm

    Hi Jean,
    Thank you for sharing your special day with us. I was wondering where you got you embellishments/stitching bracelets for your shoes. I bought the affordable version shoes (Jeffrey Campbell Hough in Pale blue suede) for my wedding, but I have been really struggling finding the appropriate "bling" for it. Would appreciate any help you can give me. Thanks!

  • A Little Lost Fish in the Sea November 25, 2015 at 11:37 am

    Hi Jean! I was wondering what color you got for your wedding dress? Thanks! (=

  • TSL November 26, 2015 at 8:14 am

    Oh Jean! God bless your union.

  • Tran Ho November 29, 2015 at 3:32 pm

    Hi Jean! I've been a long time follower and this is my first time commenting because I'm also getting married next year. I fell in love with the sash belt you made and wanted to try my hand at a DIY project for my wedding also. Could you point me to the DIY you found for it or some helpful tips as to where I can get the rhinestones and things like that? Your wedding was as beautiful as your and Nick's relationship!

  • Unknown December 3, 2015 at 10:33 pm

    Hi Jean

    I absolutely love love your style and I've actually purchased the same dress I was wondering if you could tell me more about the belt/sash you made? I purchased the champagne gold ivory Lazaro color and I believe you did too. I a wondering what color sash you did and how you created that beautiful sash! Did you search for an ivory, gold or champagne color .

    Congratulations and thanks in advanced!

  • Jean December 7, 2015 at 11:12 am

    Will have one up this week! : ) The floral comb though was made by my florist, however I have a tutorial for a basic one if you search for it on my sidebar.

  • Jean December 7, 2015 at 11:46 am

    Hi Jasmin – a friend got them for me in NYC chinatown, unfortunately, so I don't have a link to buy them online! I think any type of crystal or cubic zirconia bracelets could work, as long as the links are small enough for them to be easily pliable around the curvature of your shoes. Congrats on your upcoming wedding!!

  • Jean December 7, 2015 at 11:47 am

    Hi! It's called the "ivory gold / champagne"

  • Jean December 7, 2015 at 11:48 am

    Hi Tran – thanks so much for the kind words! My tutorial should be up this week, if not tomorrow. Thanks for your patience : )

  • Jean December 7, 2015 at 11:48 am

    Also, a big congrats on your upcoming wedding! How exciting!

  • Jean December 7, 2015 at 11:51 am

    Hi there – congrats on your upcoming wedding! The sash I used is a champagne gold color, but I really think a variety of colors would go with the dress because it has several tones in it! Also, did you buy your dress new? Because if so, it should come with a plain gold ribbon that you can use. My tutorial will be up shortly this week if you'd like more details : )

  • Renée Do December 27, 2015 at 5:46 pm

    I just teared up a bit while watching your video. I am so happy for you both!! I love following you on Snapchat and Instagram (and seeing a fellow foodie as well). You have been a great inspiration for me. I cannot wait to refer back to this post when I plan my own wedding soon. Thanks so much and congratulations again!

  • Lauren Stellato January 21, 2016 at 12:10 pm

    Hi Jean! I had a couple questions about your lovely wedding. I see that you had your ceremony in the courtyard. I was wondering where you had your reception? I did see a photo in Bates Hall, but wasn't sure if you had your reception there. I am looking into the BPL as my wedding location and would love any information from you! Thank you so much!

  • GenkiGirlNot February 15, 2016 at 2:54 pm

    Omg, you had the wedding of my dreams! I love the video highlight! Thank you for sharing your process for your special day! I appreciate the list of your vendors! I am engaged, and am planning my wedding in Boston, too! Keep representing petites everywhere!

  • Mari &amp; Brad February 19, 2016 at 7:17 pm

    Hi Jean!

    I am getting married in October and am looking into the Black Tux for tux rentals. How was your experience with your groomsmen?

    Thank you!
    Mari

  • Mari &amp; Brad February 19, 2016 at 7:18 pm

    Hello Jean!
    Your wedding sounded and looked amazing!!!!
    I am getting married in October and looking into tux options for our groomsmen. How was your experience with the Black Tux?

    Thanks for your help!

    Mari

  • cilee March 25, 2016 at 2:34 am

    Hi Jean!
    Congratulations on your wedding. I was just wondering how you sewed the bracelet onto the shoes without ruining the shoes!

  • Khanh Linh March 27, 2016 at 10:45 am

    Your wedding was beautiful and your dress is absolutely stunning! I am looking for a wedding dress and into the same Lazaro 3415. However what's available out there seems to have more flowers at the front. Did you remove the flowers from the front of the dress? I like yours more and wondering is I am looking at the right style 😂

    Thanks so much!
    Linh

  • Jean March 29, 2016 at 9:22 pm

    Hi Cilee- I sewed carefully only in the holes of the existing stitches that were on the shoe straps, so didn't create any new needle holes.

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