A collective micro-marriage 660 with a socially distanced Hora
The theme was inspired by 30th Street Station, where the couple met.
Flexibility has been one of the most important factors in wedding planning since the start of 2020, when the pandemic wreaked havoc on big days around the world. Countless couples have postponed, fled, and often found unique ways to get married. Their travels tell the story of our time, and this 660 Collective micro-marriage is no different. Only 12 guests attended the socially distant summer party, which was filled with colorful flowers, personal touches – and a healthy dose of fun and games. Love me doing the photography captured everything below.
When Jake stein first saw Carita Thomas at Newark Penn Station, he thought she was the most beautiful woman he had ever seen. “I only saw her a minute before she left, but it stuck with me,” said the bride-to-be, who was waiting for a train to Philly. Luckily, Carrita was taking the same route and got off at 30th Street station, where Jake moved. “I saw her stop to pull out her phone, so I walked over to her and introduced myself and asked her for a drink.”
It was the first time Carrita had said yes. Another significant moment came when Jake asked the question. The couple were visiting the Kualoa Ranch Nature Reserve in Hawaii; towards the end, their guide directed them to a path to enjoy the view. Carrita noticed that Jake was pale and sweaty. “He also wasn’t responding to the hilarious jokes I kept making, so I knew something was up,” she said. She asked if he was okay, and the next thing she knew was that he was on his knees.
The Society Hill couple have planned their 250-person wedding for April 2020 at the Horticulture Center, but the pandemic has forced them to rethink their plans. They kept their spirits up, even informing their guests with an honest but bittersweet email they dubbed “The Wedding Crasher”. (Read more about that here.) The couple decided to hold a small ceremony with their family when they were sure to do so and to postpone their larger celebration until April 2021. Although the latter was ultimately canceled ( they didn’t want to be able to safely have their full guest list), they achieved their goal of saying “yes” as soon as they could – on July 3, 2020, at 660 Collective in Norristown.
The light and bright industrial place was a blank slate for their day, which they describe as “playful, modern, sophisticated and colorful”. Rather than a traditional ceremonial space, Jesse Lucas of Clover Event Co. created a socially remote lounge for the duo to say their vows and, later, relax during their reception. RAM Floral surrounded the living room with pastel-hued flowers in various arrangements – on the floor, on the furniture, and on beveled glass stands. There were local accent flowers, dahlias, peonies, ranunculus, tulips and carnations.
The theme was nodding slightly at the 30th Street station with signage and table numbers inspired by the old split flap sign: Lucas originally planned this design for the bigger celebration, but surprised the couple. also using it throughout their micro-marriage. It was one of the many things that made the day even more sentimental.
The bride took comfort in having Jake with her a few minutes before the ceremony. He helped her put on her dress and gave her a pep talk. “It was very special since I had slept poorly the night before and still suffered from severe lung pain that had persisted since I had contracted COVID months before,” Carrita said. “But in those moments, I had such clarity on what marriage really was.”
The groom was touched when their officiant, friend David Fraga, told the 12 guests at the start of the ceremony to look around the hall and silently reflect on who was there. “It was incredibly moving, and I still choke on the thought of it.” The couple wanted their readings to be a surprise and enjoyed hearing what each person selected. The bride calls her mother’s choice, “Falling in love is like owning a dog” by Taylor Mali, perfect. The ceremony was broadcast live via Twitch so Jake and Carrita could see the reaction from their friends and families.
The reception was followed by light entertainment. A miniature Jenga set was designed next to the couple’s living room as a tribute to their love of games. A round of Stein against Thomas Charades was played. “I was surprised at the degree of dominance of the Thomas family,” says Jake. “Although my family has many talents, Charades is not one of them. “
But the most common activity was the socially distant hora. Guests positioned themselves in a circle (X’s were placed on the floor so people know where to stand safely) around Carrita and Jake, who were sitting on ribbons-covered office chairs and using levers to lift themselves up and lower themselves as everyone danced and clapped to the music. .
After? Jake and Carrita took a road trip across the country, with Madison, Wisconsin and Missoula, Montana among the favorite first stops on their trip as husband and wife.
Photographer and Live Broadcast: Love Me Do Photography | Place: Collectif 660 | Planning / Design: Jesse Lucas of Clover Event Co. | Flowers: RAM Floral | Menu: Middle Child sandwiches | Bridal Attire: Emmy Mae from Lovely Bride (dress); Reform (combination) | Hair: Kerri Fawley of Herringbone Salon | Make-up: Kristyn Rudnet of Shimmer and Spice | Groom’s Outfit: SuitSupply | Officiant: David Fraga | Rental and linens: Party Rental Ltd.
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