September 27, 2019

Philadelphia Wedding Photographer | Free Library on the Parkway | Lisa + Stephen

Wedding

It was a stupendous August day in Philadelphia.  There were a few sunny showers that morning as Lisa was coming back from SoulCycle but otherwise it was blue skies all the way.  The morning was relaxed and breezy as Lisa and Stephen got ready in their respective suites at the Logan Hotel.

Lisa wore a fabulous wedding gown with a plunging lace-trimmed neckline and a pair of sparkly Jimmy Choo pumps.  Somehow petite Lisa and her sister, Abby, are naturals in sky high heels and wear them like us mortals would wear slippers.

I’ve known Lisa for over 20 years and she never looked more dazzling than she did on that day.

It was bowties all around for Stephen and the groomsmen, with the smallest looking adorably dapper in his tux.

They took advantage of the local flora and fauna on the walk from the Logan to the Free Library on the Parkway.

Lisa’s wedding party was decked out in Lisa’s favorite color – hot pink.  Her sister and best friend, Stef, rocked those gowns!

The Free Library of Philadelphia (Parkway Central branch) was designed in 1911 to emulate French eighteenth century classical architecture (it wasn’t built until the 20s).  I’m honestly shocked that this was the first wedding I had ever covered at the library.  I rarely see it mentioned despite its superb location and marvelous architecture, inside and out.  Because there had been a 30% chance of rain that day, the ceremony was held indoors.  The Free Library has an incredible roofdeck terrace (more on that later) but it’s a rare venue where the rain plan is just as amazing.  See for yourself!

pink lit wedding ceremony at Free Library on the Parkway in Philadelphia

I loved that there was a reading from Mr. Rogers “It’s You I Like” during the ceremony.

After they became husband and wife and I took some family pictures, Stephen gave me a very quick ten (10!) minutes to get pictures of the newlyweds alone.  He was eager to get to his guests and start the party.

There were a few seconds after formals when Lisa went to refresh her lipstick and I had Stephen.  I asked him what part of the day that he had been most excited about.  At that moment, the elevator doors opened and Lisa started walking towards us.  Stephen said, “That one right there.  She is my best friend.”

We were able to grab the two of them on the roofdeck overlooking the Philly skyline.

And then a couple in the stacks among the books.  (This venue was chosen in part because Lisa is a reading specialist.)

The lobby was transformed for the reception.  The pink grew deeper and tables were set out with tropical centerpieces, a nod to Lisa’s home away from home, Hawaii, where she went to school.

The escort cards were library cards that Stephen had hand dyed and baked himself to get just the right color and texture of what you would see in old card catalogs.

Lisa and Stephen descended the grand staircase and shared their first dance to “XO” with elements of Beyonce’s version (for Lisa) and John Mayer (for Stephen).

I laughed when Lisa’s dad got to the mic and promised a 15+ minute speech.  But he was serious and he delivered, eliciting laughs and groans from the guests.

Stephen hadn’t been joking about wanting to party.  He was on the dancefloor all night, swinging Lisa in his arms, playing air guitar with his groomsmen, or belting it out with his family and friends.

Thank you two for letting me in to such a tremendous event.

In the darkest night hour
I’ll search through the crowd
Your face is all that I see
I’ll give you everything
Baby, love me lights out
Baby, love me lights out

~ John Mayer/Beyonce, “XO”

Wedding Ceremony: Free Library on the Parkway, Philadelphia, PA
Wedding Reception: Free Library on the Parkway, Philadelphia, PA
Engagement Session: Society Hill
Wedding Photographer: Lindsay Docherty Photography
Getting Ready: The Logan
Flowers: Eventricity
Hair Stylist: Bella Angel, Laura
Makeup Artist: Bella Angel, Laura
Officiant: Katherine Hunter
Ceremony Music: BVT Live!, All About Me
Reception Music: BVT Live!, All About Me
Caterer: Brulee Catering
Wedding Cake: Isgro’s Pasticceria
Wedding Gown Designer: Pronovias
Wedding Gown Shop: Elizabeth John’s
Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo
Wedding Gown Shop: Elizabeth John’s
Veil: Elizabeth John’s
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Halston Heritage, Likely
Groom’s Tux: The Black Tux
Wedding Rings: Tiffany & Co., David Yurman
Engagement Ring: David Yurman
Favors: Famous 4th Street Cookie Company, Philly Pretzel Factory

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