Tara and Nick knew the only place for them to get married was the TWA Hotel at JFK Airport. Nick is a pilot and Tara is a flight attendant, so they loved incorporating their industry into their wedding. The TWA fit their Mad Men style wedding perfectly. They also wanted a guest friendly wedding so all their guests could stay there, party, and not worry about traveling between locations.
Q: Tell us about your wedding! What was the inspiration behind your day? Did you have a specific theme, style or color palette? Did you incorporate any cultural or religious traditions in any part of your day?
A: Well first and foremost, we are airline crew! Nick is a Pilot and I (Tara) am a Flight Attendant, both for major US airlines based out of New York City. We are both in our 30s, and we've been to so many weddings and we really just wanted this to be one big party that was easy on everyone. So to achieve this, we wanted it ALL to take place at a Hotel. We could have the Rehearsal Dinner, Welcome Drinks, Getting ready, Pictures, Ceremony, Reception AND After Party all in the same place. It really is SO easy on everyone, and because you don't have transportation to worry about, you have time for more pictures!We looked around at a lot of hotels, but none had the wow factor we were looking for. We stayed at The TWA Hotel for Nick's birthday when the hotel first opened in 2019, and when we heard that they did weddings, we couldn't sign our contract fast enough. Mad Men and Catch Me if You Can are two of our most favorite things to watch. Mid Century Modern is our favorite design aesthetic. And we fly for a living! It really couldn't have been more perfect. I kept telling people our colors are all the colors and none of the colors. Obviously, Red is the most overwhelming colors at the Hotel so it's tough to do anything that doesn't go with that color. I also wanted my Bridesmaids to be comfortable in their dress, so I had them pick any black velvet dress that they wanted to wear, and then my Man of Honor wore an all black velvet suit. For the flowers, I was inspired by the Retro TWA advertisements from the 60s, and wanted to pull all of those bold colors from those ads as inspiration.
Q: Let's talk wedding decor. How did you decorate your space for the ceremony and the reception? Was any part of the decor DIY?
A: One of the best things about The TWA Hotel was that it IS already so bold and decorated, so really we didn't need much to decorate and make the place Wow. I (Tara) love Graphic Design and I really wanted to make all the paper products myself because I had such an intense vision for what I wanted things to look like. I wanted it to have a nod to the golden age of travel, but not in your face cheesy. I designed our save the dates, our invitations, our website from scratch, the welcome bags, the signage, the table numbers, and the place cards. I outsourced the design for the Seating Chart and the Newspapers from Etsy designers, and had everything printed either with Tog.Ink or FedEx.
Q: What were the florals like in your wedding? Did you use flowers in any of your design elements like the bridal bouquets, centerpieces or ceremony backdrop? Did they play an important part in the overall style of your wedding?
A: To be honest, the florals were not a major concern of mine because the hotel itself was so bold and stood out on their own. But I did want the florals to have a whimsical, mid century modern vibe. I showed my florist vintage TWA advertisements from the 60s and told her those were the colors that I wanted to invoke. There was some miscommunication about the size I wanted for the ceremony, because I wanted the ceremony flowers to be much taller, but when they were placed next to our sweetheart table they looked perfect so it all worked out.
Q: Did you personalize the day in any way (food trucks, guest entertainment etc.)? What were some of your favorite parts of your wedding?
A: We made Welcome Bags for everyone who was staying at the hotel and bought our favorite airline snacks, Biscoff Cookies and Stroopwaffles, to place inside them! We also made a "newspaper" that welcomed our guests, and gave everyone the timeline and a map of where everything would be taking place in the hotel. We had our favorite local band, New Power Soul, play at our reception. We first saw them at a bar in Montclair, NJ called Just Jakes years ago, and I said to Nick that night, "If we ever get married, we're hiring them to play at our wedding". They were the best decision we made, and people keep raving to us how fun our band was. We rented out "The Connie" airplane for our after party and it was the most fun part of the night! Everyone had so much fun inside of the airplane eating Pizza from a local New York City Pizzeria and it was the perfect way to end the night.
Q: Let's talk fashion. How did you both choose your wedding day look? Describe the looks in detail.
A: Tara:I wanted my dress to be clean and classic. I'm not a lace or frills person, and I really wanted to have a timeless look that I'll love forever. When I was a little girl in the 90s, I remember Pearl Veils were very in style, and I always wanted one. But through the years they went out of style, but in 2020 they started to pop back up again, and it was fate. I really was living my little girl dream.I wore my mother's pearls that she wore at her wedding, which was the best something old and something borrowed I could ever ask for. As for shoes, I wanted to be COMFORTABLE. My dress was so big that I knew no one was ever going to see my shoes. I bought a flat sandal with a tiny heel for pictures and to walk down the "aisle" and then immediately changed into Kate Spade Glitter Sneakers for the reception. Nick:Nick wanted to look and feel like James Bond and have that 1960's vibe about him. So he had him and all his groomspeople wear black suits, and Cynthia wore a black jumpsuit.
Q: How did you meet? Tell us about the proposal.
A: We met in a very unique way! A dating app! We met on Bumble in November 2016 and dated for 5 years before Nick proposed. We were always on the go during those first couple of years, but then the Pandemic grounded us (literally). Being in lockdown together showed us how we could get through anything together, and showed us how much we just loved being in each others company 24 hours a day. Tara's favorite movie is You've Got Mail, and Nick had Tara's friends, Seb and Hannah (who was a bridesmaid) to trick her into taking her to the exact spot in Riverside Park where the end of the movie takes place. Nick hired a quartet to play Somewhere Over the Rainbow (the song that plays at the end of the movie) and as soon as Tara realized where she was and heard the song she knew exactly what was happening. Nick came around the corner and shouted "Brinkley!" like in the movie, and we just both cried for forever in happiness.
Q: What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?
A: We had a few moments that were our favorites. First was our first look. We set it up perfectly on the balcony catwalk in the hotel. It was a very public first look, but as the public realized what was about to happen everyone started cheering for us and it made the moment feel like a movie. The look on Nick's face when he saw me will forever be engrained in my memory.Nick's vows will also forever go down in the history books. They were truly aw-inspiring and the only thing people were talking about the entire night. The other moment I was so happy that happened was that we ate dinner alone!!! This also goes for advice for people planning their weddings: have dinner alone!!! We made the timeline happen without anyone noticing by doing the following:Cocktail Hour: 6pm - 7pmDoors open to Reception: 7pm. From 7-7:30pm, people were finding their their seats, started eating their Salads that were pre-plated, reviewing the menus, and waiters came around and started taking everyones Entree orders for dinner.At 7:30 we had our big entrance into the Reception. So from 7-7:30pm, we ate our dinner in a private conference room that was off the ballroom. The hotel staff brought us a special bottle of champagne, had our meals ready for us, and even brought us food from cocktail hour that we could try. It was so nice to be alone just the 2 of us for 30 minutes so we could rest and really take in the moment. So when our Guests entrees came out, we were able to make the rounds at our Guests tables and got to say Hi to everyone. Logistically, it was the smartest decision we made.
Q: Do you have any wedding planning or marriage advice that you'd like to share with other couples planning their day?
A: When Guests look back on Weddings they've attended years later, people only remember 2 things: If they had fun, or if they were frustrated. People remember weddings where people had a TON of fun and we're dancing the entire night and had a great time. And people remember weddings where they were frustrated (What comes to mind for me is the weddings where there wasn't enough food, or if there was a cash bar, or if there wasn't proper shuttle transportation or parking). Those are truly they only things people remember, they won't remember the flowers or the favors, or even the taste of the food. Keeping that in mind, try to make the wedding as stress free for your Guests, and focus on the fun of it all!And on the actual day, let go and let god. Whatever will be will be. There were definitely a LOT of things that went wrong, some that we could truly have never even think to plan for. But looking back those are the stories that make everyone laugh. So just try to remember that as things go wrong. All that's important is that youre getting married to the love of your life.