It’s funny how love works.
Take Michelle Houston, for example. In one very “You’ve Got Mail” scenario, Houston met her current husband, Campbell, on a fitness-oriented dating site. Little did she know that her boyfriend worked only a few hundred yards from where she lived.
As fitness enthusiasts, the duo planned their first date in a climbing gym. Nine months later, in the Adirondacks, Campbell fell to one knee on Mount Marcy in the middle of a whiteout, no less. The proposal was memorable to say the least, and Houston said yes to a life with her love.
At home, the two focused on wedding planning, an endeavor that was frustrated from the start.
“First we went to a big wedding, not because it was what we wanted, but because we felt an obligation to do it,” says Houston, adding that the stress of planning destroyed all the excitement Occasion. “After three months we scrapped everything and decided to have a small wedding. It was the best choice we made for our wedding. “
After committing to a smaller ceremony, the couple reserved an end of summer at Westchester’s Blue Hill in Stone Barns. Although they’d already explored a number of venues in person and online, they knew Blue Hill offered the aesthetic that matched their relationship at a discount. Thanks to their decision to keep the occasion intimate, they were able to keep costs down and make the most of the quaint farm-to-table landscape.
“Since we only had 18 guests and it was lunch, the cost of a more traditional wedding was significantly lower than elsewhere,” said Houston.
On a quiet late summer day, Houston walked down the aisle in a stunning strapless Paloma Blanca dress. Although she originally envisioned a long sleeved one (à la Kate Middleton), she didn’t fall head over heels for the style when she tried it on herself. She switched gears and picked up a lightly laced dress with sides and a soft skirt. To make the show stopper even more special, she added a thin rhinestone belt, handcrafted headpiece, and blush with a stunning cathedral length veil studded with crystals. The shining stars of the ensemble, however, were undoubtedly the glittering, floral-accented Jimmy Choos that she put on their feet.
“I’ll still break it out for very special occasions,” she admits.
In connection with the relaxed charisma of the occasion, Campbell decided against a traditional black suit in favor of a crisp blue one. With a soft patterned tie and matching cufflinks, he was ready to meet his bride at the end of the outside corridor.
The couple said “I do” on the bright green grounds of Blue Hill in Stone Barns. Shortly before they exchanged rings (which were engraved with “on secure” and “secure” as an ode to their mutual love for climbing), their best man wrapped the climbing rope around her hands to “tie the knot” and sweet memories of her conjure up first date. After that, the couple hid for a few minutes to enjoy the moment and then partied with a sip of champagne.
To keep the party al fresco, the group sat together for a cocktail hour under the sun, then sat at a long naturally decorated table for a true Blue Hill farm lunch. Like the ceremony, the cake was simple and elegant, a three-tier beauty with bright pink and yellow zinnias. It harmonized perfectly with the flowers that were scattered along the table runner and the soft bouquets of herbs that were knotted along the lights above.
Houston and her husband are now happily married and looking forward to the next phase of their lives together.
“We are absurdly happily married and expect our first child in just a week!” she raves. Looking back on the ceremony, she is pleased that she and Campbell decided to make a small wedding a priority as they had the opportunity to celebrate with their dearest family and friends.
“Don’t let social pressure or social media determine how you celebrate your wedding,” she says. “It is about you.”
Florist: Graceland Florist for bouquets and boutonnieres, Blue Hill in Stone Barns for table arrangements
Caterer and cake: Blue Hill in Stone Barns
Photographer: CassadyK Photography
Dress: Paloma Blanca
Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Bridal Hair: Hair by Antoinette NYC
Bridal makeup: Jenny Alves