Kate and Stacey chose to plan and execute their wedding day in only four months. This short time frame took nothing away from their timeless wedding, which was full of unique twists, tradition and all of their loved ones.
Tell us! How did the proposal happen?
After fifteen months of dating, we started decorating for our second Christmas together. Stacey purchased a wooden green and red advent calendar; with twenty-five wooden compartments. Each day, I opened a box and found (what I thought) was one of twenty-five reasons why she loves me. On Christmas morning, the note read “1…” and when I turned around, Stacey was on one knee (with our pups by her side)… the rest is history!
Were there any eventful stories during the lead-up to the wedding?
There are so many decisions to make when planning a wedding, and we struggled with several due to family dynamics. Regardless of where we got married and how many people would be attending, we were determined to choose LGBTQIA+ vendors and allies for our wedding.
What lead you to the venue? Had you been there before?
In October 2019, we decided to plan everything and be married in four months. In mid-October, we signed the contract, found our attire in November, went on (what is now our honeymoon due to COVID) in December to Australia and New Zealand, and finalized the details in January 2020. The wedding took place at the Fairmont Copley Plaza in Boston, MA, on February 29, 2020.
70% of our guest list were located in New England. One of my best friends and aunt are in wheelchairs, so we wanted a location that was easily accessible by all. Given it was winter, we also wanted to afford our guests the opportunity not to go outside and/or travel to multiple locations. I was born and raised in Boston, and Stacey has lived there for 16 years. Boston just feels like home. With that in mind, we narrowed our search to the historic venues in Boston.
What was the inspiration behind the vibe of your wedding, and why did you go with that?
We wanted everyone to feel welcome, appreciated, and loved. Our guests have had an incredibly positive impact on our individual and or collective selves throughout our lives. We wanted everyone to enjoy themselves, celebrate, relax, and be happy.
We wove in aspects that are important to us; Pictures/Prayer cards of deceased loved ones (in Stace’s pocket) for support, our dogs in the ceremony with their custom attire, Kate’s Chinese grandmother’s necklace (something old, new, borrowed, blue) late night Chinese pastries Obergefell v Hodges; The historical landmark marriage equality decision, a Peace Prayer from St. Francis, Cousin Christopher’s Signature Cocktail.
Also, my parents were in the Mercer-O’Hare wedding, and their daughter and I went to college together. Kate did a reading at her wedding, and she did a reading at our wedding, continuing the tradition; two generations plus.
Talk to us about your experience finding the perfect outfits.
Stacey went to Bindle and Keep and had the most welcoming and positive experience with her best friend, Steff. This enabled her to feel her authentic self on our wedding day truly. The process included two trips to Brooklyn between November 2019 and January 2020 and ended with a fantastic custom suit.
My mom, cousin Michael and I went to a few dress shops. We were referred to a local boutique that has been open for 25+ years and is family-run. We walked in fifteen minutes before closing, feeling defeated after over three stores, explained what I was looking for, and the owner said, “I have your dress”!
Talk to us about the big day!
Stacey started the day with a walk around downtown Boston while Kate attended a morning Orangetheory class. We chose to spend the day apart and got ready with our closest friends and family. The ceremony and reception were everything we could have hoped for, especially with only four months to plan. Also, we can’t thank Alice Fay, the wedding planner, for everything she did to make our day so special. She didn’t miss a detail.
What are your favorite moments?
We are undeniably obsessed with our two dogs, and having them be part of our day was so special.
Every month since the wedding, we’ve heard from friends and family about how our wedding was their last big gathering before COVID. Not knowing how dramatically our lives would change and how long we would go without seeing everyone has made our wedding memories that much sweeter.
What does marriage mean to you?
Marriage is a partnership where we support each other through anything and everything, regardless of what life throws at us. For us, that means talking through the good and the bad and being willing to compromise. During COVID, the amount of time spend together has been great but also eye-opening. Now, we’ve transitioned to creating our own structure to ensure we invest in each other each day and don’t take the added time for granted.
Advice for other couples planning a wedding?
The benefit of planning a wedding in four months was that we didn’t have time to stress over every little detail. I highly recommend being on the same page about the must-haves and nice-to-haves before getting started. So, getting lost in the details means you’re losing sight of the true purpose of the day.
A year later, I can tell you the food and cake I had at the pre-wedding tasting was fantastic, but I didn’t eat it the day of due to mingling. Also, our guests were happy to sit in whatever chair we offered them and the custom handwriting on their place cards served its purpose in showing their seat assignments. Most importantly, I can tell you about the conversations I had with each person who came to celebrate with us and that I woke up the following day feeling grateful. Focus on what’s important.
Photography by Tara Beth Photography