Kris and Chris

Huntingdon Valley, Pennsylvania

 

 

Photography | J&J Studios, LLC | @jjstudiosphiladelphia

Venue | Cairnwood Estate | @cairnwood

Ceremony Location | Barn at Forrestville | @thebarnatforrestville

Floral Designer | Mom’s Flower Shoppe

Men’s Attire | Calvin Klein @calvinklein

Makeup Artist | Necro FX | @necro_fx

Cake Designer | Palermo’s Bakery | @palermosbakery

Caterer | John Serock Catering | @serockcatering

Design | Michaels | @michaelsstores

Design | Joann | @joann_stores

Favors and Gifts | Miramonte Winery & Etched Wines | @miramontewinery

Favors and Gifts | Efavormart | @efavormartofficial

Signage | Etsy | @etsy

Signage | Gloss Studios

Ring Designer | Triton | @tritonjewelry

DJ | GNJ Mobile DJ Service

Officiant | Weddings and Ceremonies With Pastor Chris

 

Here, we tell the love story of Chris and Kris, two lovebirds with a ghoulishly-delicious gold & black, Halloween themed wedding. Their color palette was gold and black with touches of white, blush & burgundy which highlighted the soft, yet vibrant non-traditional colors that Autumn often brings. The day started off at the rustic and beautiful Forestville Barn, a 160-year-old German swing barn, restored to its rustic best. There, the couple had a tearful first look in matching navy blue Calvin Klein suits with black ties & black shoes. They shared a soulful stroll through the bucolic fields of the Forestville Estate… long, rolling meadows were punctuated by old stone farm buildings, wooden carriages, fences and the deep barn red colors of the restored Forestville Barn.

 

After family formals were taken using the gorgeous red barn as the background, the couple held their ceremony in the golden glow of the tea-tree lit barn room. Chris and Kris were flanked by their “best people”… four “Groomsladies” dressed in neutral-toned, champagne gold-hued silk dresses with rose gold sequins and four Groomsmen dressed in black suits with black ties. As the couple exchanged their heartfelt, handwritten vows, there was not a dry eye in the house. The couple exchanged gun metal gray Tungsten Carbide rings with polished beveled edges by Triton before their dreamy first kiss.

 

For the reception, the couple chose the grandiose Cairnwood Estate, a house designed by Carrère and Hastings in the Beaux Arts style. The estate blends Greek and Roman Architectural Ideas in a French Renaissance Style. Guests were each given mini “cotton candy” white pumpkins with handwritten black place cards showing their table number assignments for dinner.

 

After arriving at Cairnwood Estate, our dapper grooms changed into a second outfit, two Calvin Klein Black Shawl Lapel Slim Fit Tuxedos. After some additional family pictures and grooms’ portraits in their stylish new getups along Cairnwood’s stately grounds, the couple settled in for cocktail hour with hors d’oeuvres and a buffet style dinner. Appetizers included mouth-watering mac & cheese lollipops, mini grass-fed beef with cheddar & tomato aioli and mini grilled cheese with tomato soup shooters. Dinner was braised short rib with frizzled onions served on a cauliflower mash, chicken francaise pan seared in a Beurre Blanc white wine sauce and grilled Atlantic salmon served with mashed potatoes, mixed green salad and heirloom tomatoes in a balsamic reduction. After this delicious smorgasbord, the guests started lighting up the dance floor which resulted in an all-out rendition of the Village People’s – YMCA with one of our grooms, Kris, dressed in a policeman’s uniform.

 

Guests were free to explore the photobooth room complete with life-size zombie standees of both Grooms made by Leslie Tolbert and her team at Flashpoint Graphix. What a wonderful “Walking Dead” style Halloween surprise. The zombies weren’t the only surprise that evening. After burning some calories on the dance floor, the couple revealed another surprise – a beautifully arranged dessert, candy, wedding cake & champagne room. Here, the couple welcomed guests to their favorite candies like sour belts, gummy cola bottles, Swedish Fish, candy corn and Reese’s Pieces. The grooms’ favorite desserts were duplicated by John Serock Catering with a dessert table filled with whoopee pies, blueberry crumble bars, pumpkin pie, fruit tarts, gold-dusted crème brulee’ and a delectable warm chocolate-chip-cookie and milk station (chocolate, strawberry & plain).

 

After a fun cake flinging session, the couple steps out for some beautiful night portraits showing the beautiful Cairnwood grounds at night. To cap off the night, guests were offered hand-etched mini champagne bottles by EtchedWine.com as a small parting gift along with personalized small, black and gold foil embossed boxes from Etsy filled with wedding cake slices for the road.

 

Tell us about your wedding! What was the inspiration behind your day?

We both wanted our wedding to embrace the Halloween/Fall Season, but in a surprising, unexpected & non-traditional way. We also wanted our special day to reflect both our individual upbringings as well. Chris was raised Catholic with a big Italian family in Pennsylvania & I was raised in a smaller Southern Baptist upbringing in Texas. Our reception venue, Cairnwood Estate, was the embodiment of elegance and regality so we kept picturing ourselves in black tuxedos and our guests in formal gowns and suits. The well-manicured lawns overlooking the terrace and high ceilings filled with rich history reminded us of an estate in Southern Italy somewhere. I kept thinking of our reception as this sweeping, lush fantasy black and gold masquerade ball. On the other end of the spectrum, The Barn at Forestville ceremony setting was a little bit country reminding me of my hometown Texas roots. It was rustic and romantic, so we knew that accenting the barn with soft and vibrant non-traditional fall colors of burgundy, blush, white and gold would compliment it perfectly. Those colors would also be the through line flowing throughout the rest of the evening and tying both very different venues together into one cohesive love story.

 

Let’s talk wedding decor. How did you decorate your space for the ceremony and the reception?

Pumpkins go hand in hand with October & the Halloween Season but again, we didn’t want to go with orange jack-o-lanterns, so it became my mission to stay cohesive with our black & gold color theme while also adding a fun, elegant & upscale modern twist on how we normally see pumpkins in October. The idea of metallic painted gold & black bejeweled/bedazzled miniature pumpkins as decor & adorning the table settings/surroundings kept popping into my head. So, I put my DIY skills to work with a hot glue gun, paint & glitter!

 

What were the florals like in your wedding?

Roses are forever classic & elegant so pairing burgundy, blush & white roses with our black table linens & gold accents/embellishments was a no-brainer. We talked about jewel-toned wildflowers for a brief second, but we both love the elegance & simplicity of roses mixed with greenery.

 

What were some of your favorite parts of your wedding?

We personalized the reception napkin menu cards to reflect our change from navy suits (for the ceremony) to debonair & dapper black tuxedos. The menus looked like white dress shirts with black bow ties & each black napkin was a tuxedo-folded “jacket”. An individual rose was placed onto each black napkin jacket lapel. It was a breathtaking table setting… My DIY gold/black bedazzled pumpkins, black table linen, gold chargers and gold silverware were a MUST to complete the whole look. Chris and I LOVE Halloween & scary movies so we had an idea to have the ultimate photo booth accessories: life-size cutout standees of Chris and I dressed up as zombies. Flashpoint Graphix created the actual standees from an earlier zombie photoshoot we did with J&J Studios in Philadelphia. It was such a cool & surprising touch for our guests to be able to pose with gruesome life-size replicas of us as zombies!

 

Let’s talk fashion. How did you both choose your wedding day look? Describe the looks in detail.

We knew that we wanted to stand apart at the ceremony from our gold & black dressed “best people”. The navy blue suits by Calvin Klein were slim fitted & tailored for us, so we felt like a million bucks. The decision to wear black ties & black shoes really POPPED & yet also tied us into our groomsmen’s all black suit looks while our “Groomsladies” rocked their more neutral champagne gold looks accented by the burgundy, blush & white bouquets. The navy color really popped in the rustic, romantic outdoor & inside barn locations. It was classy & still fit in with the rustic elegance of the barn ceremony setting. We decided that a dapper “Mad Men” black Calvin Klein Slim Fit Shawl Collar Tuxedo change was fitting for the upscale setting for the reception at Cairnwood… we wanted to look/feel like we lived at Cairnwood and this was most definitely OUR PARTY that we were hosting in those black tuxes!…It also added that element of surprise to our guests to see an outfit change.

 

How did you meet? Tell us about the proposal.

We met at a charity benefit in Los Angeles… I approached Chris while in line for hot dogs… LOL! When I saw him enter the room, he literally took my breath away and  still does everyday. Chris surprised me with a fun proposal in Texas at a Horror Convention. We both LOVE scary movies so he gathered the cast of our favorite scary movie, “A Nightmare On Elm Street” together and burst through the door dressed in a full on Freddy mask and torn sweater to get down on one knee to propose. My family was there which was so truly special. It was SO US.

 

What was the most anticipated or special moment of your wedding day?

Standing together united as husbands in front of all the people we love the most in the world together in the same room is THE MOST UNBELIEVABLE FEELING IN THE WORLD… that was the most anticipated moment… speaking those sacred vows and sharing our personal written vows to each other. For so long in my life, I didn’t think I would ever see the day where I could be accepted for who I am and showered by so much love & support… it is literally a dream come true that Chris & I are able to be a married couple. And even more incredible that there’s so much love and acceptance in the world now.

 

Do you have any wedding planning or marriage advice that you’d like to share with other couples planning their day?

Don’t sweat the small stuff & get ready to compromise. There are two people coming together from different upbringings with different ideas and you both have to work together through all the decisions and ups/downs together… yes, there will definitely be disagreements and problems that arise, but these are good problems to have. You’re lucky to be blessed with being able to plan a wedding with the love of your life, so ENJOY IT. And get as much done as early as possible because the last six weeks creeps up VERY QUICKLY!