If one thing is certain, you know your love is strong when your S.O. encourages you to pursue your dreams across the country and fights to keep the love alive throughout your long distance relationship. That's just one small portion of Mike and Bernadette's love story that was founded in San Diego. After a year of Bernadette living in the hustle and bustle of New York City, Mike decided that he simply could not live with out her for one second longer and hopped on a plane to pop the big question in front of the iconic 1922 Jane's Carousel with the Brooklyn Bridge Park & Manhattan skyline in view.
Fast forward to the wedding where the couple decided on San Diego's Luce Loft for their west coast reunion and we caught up with them shortly after to get the deets on their happily ever after. Seriously, when the creative couple behind local San Diego brand, Tethermade, throws a party, you know it's going to be a visual masterpiece! We'll let the photos do the talking...
Photography: Stacy Keck
Tell us about your engagement story!
Mike & I were together about 4 years at this point, and over the last year we had been doing long distance. I took an opportunity to work in New York, and Mike needed to stay in San Diego, but we were making it work by traveling back and forth. Mike was in New York to visit for Thanksgiving and he had some tricks up his sleeve. He had a ring made from family heirlooms that he got from my mom. My mom was in town, but it was normal for her to visit, she has a friend she stays with in Williamsburg. That morning she was texting me casually, seeing what we were doing, asking if we wanted to meet up for brunch, nothing out of the ordinary. Mike wanted to do a some sight seeing first so we went to Jane's Carousel in Dumbo and walked by the water. He got down on one knee and I said "yes", it was a very easy answer! I heard clapping and cheering around us, and assumed it was just kind strangers, but then I saw my mom and some friends from San Diego. After we took some pictures we all went out to brunch around the corner. It was a perfect.
A New York proposal? How romantic! Did you know at that moment what kind of wedding you wanted?
I may have started a secret Pinterest board a couple months before (and I might have titled it "eeeeeeeeek"), but there wasn't much on it. Mostly we knew what kind of wedding we didn't want to have, which I think is important. We first decided what was really important to us (food, drinks, music, fun) and then we let the style come after.
What inspired the design and style of your wedding?
FUN! We didn't want to spend a lot of time trying to plan everything out perfectly. We worked with vendors and friends we trusted to make decisions for us and just let everything come together organically. Last minute, we had the crazy idea for our ballon backdrop, ordered 200+ balloons and then just crossed our fingers that it would all come together.
What drew you to Luce Loft? Any advice you'd pass onto future brides about the space?
We have had a lot of special moments at Luce Loft in the past. We spent our first New Years Eve together there, we've seen some really amazing bands play there, and it just felt like the right place instantly, we didn't look at any other venues. Luce Loft is amazing because it's transformable. It's amazing to see what other people have done in the space, but it's also beautiful on it's own so you don't have to bring in a ton of decor if you want a simpler wedding. Plus, having the additional "apartment" side with multiple bathrooms, dressing rooms, closets, and a full kitchen was great!
What was the best part of your special day?
I wish I could relive the whole day exactly as it was. I really loved watching our friends and family come together to set everything up that morning. They made magic happen. Knowing that all of this was done by people we love so much made it even more special. Our wedding felt completely 'us'. Mike really loved taking photos with our families all together. We met down the street from Luce Loft at the library, and went up to the roof. It was so sweet to have a moment before the ceremony with our families (nice to get out some the waterworks too).
Photography: Stacy Keck, @stacykeck | Furniture: Witty Rentals, - @witty_rentals | Flowers: Beth Manget, @avoidingandmaking Food: Tribute Pizza (But they made us tacos, ha! Talk about service!) @tributepizza | Drinks: Please & Thank You - @ptybar | Photo booth: Gantes co. - @gantes.co | DJ: Max Trzcinski | Balloons: Balloon Guru