How did you two meet?
Eric and I met through a mutual friend- Courtney. I had met her via fundraising For Cystic Fibrosis in Pittsburgh and Eric worked with her at New York Life (she was his boss). She thought we would be a good match so she invited us both to her birthday party. We began dating ever since! We shared a uber that night because we realized we only lived a half a mile a part on Mount Washington. Four days later we had our first date- we walked along Grandview ave and had dinner at Redbeards patio outside.
Tell me about the proposal!
Ever since we started dating almost 4 years ago Eric has been wanting to go to Iceland. With changing his job and attending the Police Academy, we didn’t have much time for a long trip until 2019. We decided to finally go to Iceland! We rented a campervan and spent a week and a half exploring the country and seeing the most beautiful sights. Camping throughout it all made it so much fun- we had a blast finally slowing down and spending time together. I am an itinerary person through and through so we bought maps and did a lot of research to ensure we didn’t miss a thing. When we landed in Iceland we found out our bags we a day behind us. We spent that day exploring locally until we could go back to get them. Eric insisted that we stop at a gym to shower and get back on schedule. Once I changed Eric asked me “do you feel cute?” hahaha I guess thinking ahead that I would want to look decent for a proposal.
The second waterfall we saw that day was called Skogafoss-Skogafoss is a great beautiful waterfall and there was a rainbow perfectly displayed when we drove up. Right away he handed his phone for a “picuture” and a nice man taped the whole proposal. Through lots of tears we hugged and spend time hiking above the waterfall and soaking it in before we facetimed and called our families. It was so nice to have the proposal early on in our trip so we could enjoy the time together. Little did I know he had been sitting on the ring for almost a year. Once we decided planning the trip he knew he wanted to wait- so much self control, especially since it was hidden in our apartment all that time!
What was your favorite part of wedding planning?
Easily the moments I’ve shared with my family. When I got my wedding dress, it was around Christmas, so all my sisters and my mom were in town. Eric’s mom Leanne came to town as well. Whether it’s asking an opinion or sharing tips- any chance that we get to spend time with our family has been amazing. Eric’s mom doesn’t have any daughters so I wanted her to feel included as well. She ended up having a Pittsburgh shower and my side a Philly shower- that way we can ensure everyone can celebrate (especially since covid limited travel!). Eric’s mom is also leading the cookie table charge which has been a fun time to introduce those details to my Philly side.
Everyone has jumped in with arms wide open and we couldn’t be more grateful!
What is some advice you’d give to a newly engaged couple about the whole wedding planning process?
Use a google drive document! Seriously that has been a life saver with keeping track of all the logistics, vendors, and cost. Another thing I would say is allow your friends and family who care about you help out and feel included. It’s all about the bride and groom but it’s also about the people that have celebrated you from the beginning.
What inspired your vision for your wedding day? Do you have a theme or color palette? How do you envision your ideal wedding day?
The gardens at the Pittsburgh Botanic Garden inspired us (despite the wedding moving to a backyard, which still fit the vision beautifully!). We love that the mix of flowers and colors provide the majority of the decoration we would need for that day. Because of the gardens our style is very classic, pretty, causal but elegant. The bridesmaid dresses are evergreen to pull out the greenery of the venue. The flowers and floral centerpieces are based off of soft pastel colors, with roses, greens, and lambs ear mixed in. Some of the decorations include lanterns on the farm tables and simple bouquets for the round tables. Relaxed is the style rather than fancy and rigid.
What is the most anticipated moment of your wedding day? If you could only choose one photo to walk away from your wedding day with, what would it be?
First look! Eric and I have been through a lot over the past few months- that it comes down to us finally getting that moment to get married! A close second is the pictures with our families. We couldn’t be here without their constant support and cheering us on every single moment.
Dawn Derbyshire Photography loves love.
I strive to create an inclusive, welcoming space for my employees, vendors I work with, AND my clients of all races, religions, sexual orientations and identities. All of my clients (and their love stories) deserve respect, are cherished, and are valued by me and my business. You are welcome in my business, my life, and my heart.