Matthew Unger was very nervous about meeting Nicole Cardinale. “The second I saw her, I was shocked by how beautiful she was, which made me even more nervous,” he admits. “When we sat down and started talking, the conversation flowed with ease and my nerves went away. Nicole was funny and sweet; she was just perfect. It was love at first sight.” Nicole also felt a connection. “It seemed like we had known each other for years,” she says.
Surprisingly, the couple’s first date was a long time in the making. A mutual friend had tried to connect the two for several years, though it was not all for naught. Nicole and Matt’s relationship flourished and soon they became engaged.
As they embarked on the preparations for their summer nuptials, Nicole discovered the process was more complicated than she anticipated. “Luckily, we had an amazing wedding planner and she helped us navigate through the planning,” she shares. The bride and groom selected a majestic historical landmark in Brooklyn as the location for their event. “The architectural design was one of a kind,” notes Matt. As for the color scheme, they chose exuberant bright tones.
The traditional Jewish ceremony was held beneath the 110-foot-high dome marvelously bedecked in vivid frescoes. Soft lavender uplighting bathed the space. Clear chiavari chairs faced a striking chuppah composed of four posts enveloped in branches, greenery, and hot pink and crimson blossoms topped with a canopy delineated by cascading fuchsia orchid garlands. In honor of Nicole’s deceased father, colorful faux butterflies – symbolizing resurrection – were sprinkled amidst the structure. “The flowers in my wedding were one of my favorite [elements],” she says. “My florist took my vision and made it a reality.”
Nicole’s mother escorted her down the aisle to a live band singing “Marry Me” by Train. The bride was beaming in a strapless gown with draping at the bodice, a satin sash with sparkling crystals, and an airy, tiered skirt. Heels adorned with handpainted pink and lavender butterflies and the couple’s names lent a touch of color to her ensemble. She accented her updo with a dazzling headpiece, and carried a lush bouquet of fuchsia orchids, to which a charm containing a photo of her late father and grandparents was affixed. A similar singular bloom graced the lapel of Matt’s black tuxedo.
The service was full of emotion. “Circling Matt in front of the chuppah was a really special moment,” recalls the bride. The couple also incorporated the tallit that had belonged to Matt’s grandfather, as well as his kiddush cup, in the proceedings.
Being introduced as husband and wife as they entered the reception was an unforgettable experience for the newlyweds. “It is an indescribable feeling to walk with your husband into a room filled with everyone you love,” muses Nicole. The tablescapes displayed two stunning floral designs. On the long tables, tall stands overflowing with fuchsia orchids and verdure – punctuated with tea lights in suspended glass spheres – created a trellis effect. Below it, floating candles highlighted a runner composed of hot pink orchids and roses in red and blush.
Round tables were embellished with trumpet vases filled with abundant bundles of foliage anchored by ruby carnations and magenta orchids and roses. Votives in golden mercury-glass vessels surrounded the centerpieces. Place settings sat on silver textured linens that matched the menus and charger rims. The wedding cake also reflected a metallic accent hue. The five-layer confection was sculpturally adorned with a central pewter rose with petals fashioned in an ombré pattern.
“Our band was amazing,” notes Matt of the festivities. “They played a mix of old and new party songs.” The merriment of the lively dance floor was evidently infectious. “I was nervous [about dancing] in front of everyone,” reveals the groom. “I am the worst and have cement in my shoes; but when the party started, I let loose and danced the whole time.”
To couples caught up in the details of planning their big days, Nicole offers the following advice: “Don’t stress about the little things; it will end up being the best day of your life, no matter what.” She certainly heeded her own words by relishing every moment and dancing the night away alongside her newly minted husband.