Bellezza. Fiori. : How did you meet your husband?
BFF: I met my husband, Danny, my freshman year of college on the first day of classes. The class was called Principles of Movement.
We were both Dance and Movement Studies minors so we were bound to run into each other eventually. He's very handsome and he was all dressed up for a fraternity event that was happening that day so it was hard not to notice him.
Over a few weeks we finally mustered up the courage to talk to each other. One day in class, Danny picked a spot right next to me to do an assigned meditation exercise (done very poorly, I may add). We basically spent the entire exercise not paying attention but that eventually led to him asking me out on our first date to my favorite restaurant in Meadville.
Bellezza. Fiori. :Tell us a little bit about your story together, (how long you've been with each other, how did he propose, what do you love most about your husband, anything unique to you as a couple)!
BFF: We've been together for just about 9 years. We had some ups and downs in between but we always knew we'd end up together.
Over the past few years, our family and friends kept asking us when we were going to get married. We just always responded that we weren't in a huge hurry but apparently Danny secretly had a different idea. In July 2016, Danny and I flew to Alaska for a little vacation together. Alaska has always been a very special place to me because I did research for my college senior thesis there for two summers.
We had tons of fun doing some deep-sea fishing, ocean kayaking, hiking, and plenty of eating. One day,we left Anchorage to hike on the Matanuska Glacier in southern Alaska. I, not being very observant, didn't pick up on how nervous he was the whole day. After playing around on the ice and skipping rocks in a giant lake in the middle of the glacier, Danny found the perfect spot to propose. Danny asked me to marry him surrounded by blue glacial ice, a meandering glacial stream, and the beautiful Matanuska Valley scenery. Danny, being a meticulous and detail-oriented man, had planned how he would propose to me years in advance. The best part of this story is that Danny wrote a note to himself to start planning a proposal in Alaska for me in 2013, three years earlier.
What I love most about my husband is how open and kind he is to others. He has such a big heart that just draws everyone to him. He's able to get along and communicate with so many people from different walks of life. It's nice to be with someone that lives his life to the fullest, always listening to what other people have to say, sharing experiences with others as much as he can. It's made me a more open and thoughtful person just knowing him. His smile really explains it all. He has the most inviting, warm, and caring smile a woman can ask for.
Bellezza. Fiori. : What is your favorite thing to do together in your free time?
BFF: Danny and I love to cook. We both have a mild obsession with food and have made it a huge part of our lives. We really enjoy cooking for our family and friends and find that its a fantastic way to unwind after a long day. We also love doing outdoor activities including hiking, kayaking, fishing, and archery. We've recently been getting into participating in mud runs and obstacle course races. This year we finished a Trifecta for the Reebok Spartan Races!
Bellezza. Fiori. : How did you decide what time of year, theme, and colors you wanted for your wedding day? What did you decide to go with?
BFF: We both didn't want to wait more than a year to get married. We mostly just picked the time of year based on what venues were available. We came up with some venue ideas we liked and checked to see what days were available.
Ultimately we decided on the beautiful Omni William Penn Hotel. The Mezzanine in the hotel is one of the most beautiful displays of architecture I've ever seen and once I saw it in person I was sold. The balcony overlooking the lobby has breathtaking marble and a gorgeous wood-carved ceiling.
The Bob and Dolores Hope room where we had our reception has stunning dark wood paneling and yet another gorgeous ceiling. The venue is what ultimately helped us decide on colors. I went with very natural but rich colors: gold, sage green, cream, blush, and plum. We didn't really have a theme in mind but the way I'd describe the vibe of the day was classic and elegant.
Bellezza. Fiori. : What was your most memorable detail of your big day?
BFF: Our first dance was definitely the most memorable part of our wedding day. Since Danny and I are dancers, we were feeling a lot of pressure to put on a big show for our family and friends.
Ultimately, we didn't choreograph anything but we did pick a most unique venue to do our first dance. In the Mezzanine of the Omni William Penn, there's a beautiful balcony that overlooks the back lobby of the hotel.
For our announcement as Mr. and Mrs. Danny Huang, we walked out from the sides, Danny on the right, me on the left, and we met in the middle to have our first dance while all of our family and friends looked on from across the lobby.
We danced to one of my favorite songs "Forever" by Ben Harper. A song that really resonates with me and my relationship with Danny.
Bellezza. Fiori. : influenced you the most in your wedding planning process, (your inspiration, ideas, choosing venues, etc.)?
BFF: I'm really drawn to simple, classic elegance. The Omni William Penn did all the work for me in terms of decorations. Everything in the hotel is just so beautiful, it didn't require much effort to get that elegant feel. My mom and my sister played a huge part in helping me plan the wedding. I can always trust them to give me good advice and add really great taste to an event. I also must admit that I used Pinterest and Etsy a lot when looking for dress, floral, hair, and makeup ideas.
Bellezza. Fiori. : What advice do you have for future brides looking to start planning their big day?
BFF: Relax. At the end of the day its not about who's sitting where, what types of flowers you have, or where you'll take your photos. It's about you and the love of your life. Something I highly recommend you do is at some point during your big day, steal away a few moments to be with your new spouse alone. Danny and I got a few minutes to ourselves after the ceremony and it was heaven. Just being in the moment with him after we said our vows was just what I needed in all the chaos of this huge, wonderful party.
Bellezza. Fiori. : If you could relive any moment of that big day, what would it be?
BFF: This is perhaps what a lot of women say but I would love to relive my walk down the aisle. Danny and I did a first look before the ceremony which helped take some of the pressure off of us but I still found myself just completely on cloud nine during the ceremony! I would love to be able to really look around the room and see my loving family and friends, take in more of the atmosphere, and reflect on the commitment I was about to make with Danny. I was so in the moment with him that I didn't really notice anything else...definitely not a bad thing! I just like to be able to create and hold on to those memories.
Bellezza. Fiori. : Did you go on a honeymoon, if so where?
BFF: We haven't gone on our honeymoon yet but we'll be going to Iceland soon! It's been on my bucket list for a while and Danny and I love adventure!
Bellezza. Fiori. :What other vendors did you use? Please list contact info. for each vendor so other brides to check them out too!
BFF: Steven Vance Entertainment - This is a one stop shop for ceremony music, DJ services, uplighting, and photobooths. We hired a violin, cello, and flute trio for our ceremony, an electric violin for our cocktail hour, an a DJ for our reception. We also got really tasteful white uplighting for reception room.
Chase Images - Derek Dibrell is an incredible photographer and so fantastic to work with. He's clearly very knowledgeable but so friendly and easy-going at the same time. He does his homework on the venue and the areas surrounding it which made our day go so much more smoothly. He's also very receptive to ideas and really listens to what you want. We are so happy with how our pictures turned out and we highly recommend him!
Vows to Video - We are very happy with Mark Niehaus and the work he did for our wedding. He was incredibly stealthy which was great for all the events we had going on. It didn't feel like a camera was in our face the entire night.
Omni William Penn Hotel - Going with the William Penn was quite possibly the best decision we could have made for our wedding. Such high quality service from the wedding planning, to catering, to orchestrating the big day. Darlene Coons is hands-down the best wedding planner a bride can ask for. She's incredibly friendly, detail-oriented, responsive, and helpful. The food was absolutely incredible and maybe I'm just a little biased but it was the best food I've ever had at a wedding. The service throughout the day and evening was top-notch with very attentive staff that did a seamless job serving our guests. It's a one-stop shop here as well so you get your venue, catering, and tables/chairs/linens all in one place.
Bellezza. Fiori. : Would you recommend Bellezza. Fiori. to other brides?
BFF: Absolutely! Lauren and Kendalyn are so professional and yet so down-to-earth and friendly. Everything was just so easy! I gave them a general idea of what I wanted with my look and they knew exactly what to do and got it perfect the first time around. As someone that can get overwhelmed easily in the hustle and bustle of a big day, Lauren and Kendalyn made my day so much easier and truly made it special.