Real Long Island Wedding: Athina and Thomas

  • Athina and Thomas - Real Weddings Long Island, NY

The inspiration for the wedding was really just to have an elegant affair that reflected our personalities and talents without spending an arm and a leg. And, that’s why I/we chose to do much of it ourselves.

I believed from the start of the planning process that I wanted certain things for our wedding. When I did the research into these things, we would have had to increase our budget by $10,000. That was not happening! As special as a wedding is, we didn't want to break the bank. I searched high and low for deals on everything from my dress to the paper for our menus. Anything that I could make myself, I did. For example, I was quoted $1000 for a personalized aisle runner yet with a little time and elbow grease I was able to make one for under $100.

We also had personalized mini baseball bats. Another LIW '08 bride inspired me to look into having these. Tom and I are huge NY Mets fans and it was important to me to incorporate our love of baseball into our wedding. I ordered mini baseball bats that had our names and wedding date engraved on them. Our bridal party used them as the 'bridal arch' for our entrance.

I am really proud of myself, and both of us for taking the initiative to be creative in personalizing and customizing our dream day. Personally, I am still most amazed and proud of our aisle runner and cocktail newsletter. The personalized aisle runner because, it was the biggest savings between what we actually paid and what we was quoted for a professional product. The cocktail newsletter because it was the most personal aspect of the wedding, as well as the one that reflects my talents the most.

While we had a fantastic fall wedding didn't want to be labeled 'a fall wedding' November is such a beautiful month with the cool air and leaves still changing color…so, we picked 3 colors: brown, gold and champagne because they remained true to the time of year but were also regal and elegant

Fox Hollow, our reception site was the perfect compliment to our “overall” picture and a dream come true. My ideal/dream wedding would have been a destination wedding in the mountains of Vail or Aspen. When we walked into the Fox Hollow, it immediately felt like a warm and cozy ski lodge. It was so perfect. The staff was so friendly and helpful. We looked at 5-6 places all in on the same day, and at the end of the evening we both agreed Fox Hollow was our top pick

When the day came, we just knew we had done the right thing and made the right choice. We had so many memorable and “magical” moments. For me it was a tie. First, it was seeing Tom for the first time as I walked down the aisle. The second would be our reception entrance since we shocked guests by walking out with Mets jerseys on. For our bridal party, they keep talking about how cool, calm and collective Tom and I were before the ceremony. I was dancing in my dress and singing to everything. Tom was joking and playing with the 'entertainment pole' of our party bus. The one thing I still hear from our guests is that our wedding was possibly the most organized wedding they ever attended and that we didn't miss a single beat. They loved our cocktail news letter because it was able to let them feel that much closer to Tom and I.

For those still planning, I would say “make your wedding reflect your relationship and personalities. That is truly the only way to have a unique wedding. Plus, you don't have to spend a fortune to have a platinum wedding!”

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