One Couple's Lakeside Fall Wedding in New Hampshire
Brooklyn residents Dagmara and Bill met the old-fashioned way—at a bar—and hit it off immediately—although, says Bill, "I had to chase her out of the bar after she left without saying goodbye." But four years later, he was done chasing her—and was ready to pop the question on a getaway weekend in Amenia, New York. "On Saturday morning, he had us get up super early for a hike up to Bash Bish State Park, where he proposed under a waterfall," recalls Dagmara.
The pair was engaged for a little more than a year while they planned their 140-guest wedding for September 22, 2018. They chose a venue in Sunapee, New Hampshire, which is close to Bill's family but a destination for the couple, their friends in New York, and Dagmara's family, who flew in from Canada, Poland, and Germany to celebrate at the Lake Sunapee Yacht Club. For Bill, seeing their families together for the first time was a big-day highlight: "I felt very grateful to have a very high turnout from the friends and family on my side, and it was very pleasing to see how much fun they had meeting Dagmara's side."
The event's autumn-inspired color palette included burgundy, blush, navy, gray, and champagne, while the waterfront spot offered sweeping views from the terrace, dock, and dining room. "We could only have dreamed of the romance and joy of our wedding experience, and will never forget it," says Bill. Dagmara agrees: "The dream that was our wedding was as romantic as any fairy tale and full of such special and fun moments that made it so memorable and unforgettable."
Black and White
The couple's paper suite, coordinated by Lulu & Roo Design Boutique, relied on a classic black-and-white color scheme, and featured a combination of serif fonts and script text. Dagmara provided a custom touch for the save-the-date—a hand-drawn outline of a lighthouse that the designers featured as a backdrop—while the invitations arrived in black envelopes addressed with white calligraphy and lined with colorful floral paper.
Dagmara found her Allure Bridals wedding dress on a trip to Kleinfeld—her second shopping stop—where she tried on eight other options before falling for her spaghetti-strap, V-neck number and its floral design. "I loved all the embroidery and the lace details of the dress," she says, "and also that it was not white but champagne in color." She paired it with a veil also from Kleinfeld and a silver pearl necklace that was a gift from her parents.
The bride's shoe of choice: Stuart Weitzman
stilettos in cabernet-hued suede.
Bill wore a navy tuxedo from Suit Supply and finished his look with a gray bow tie and black velvet slippers. The groomsmen wore navy blue suits and full-length gray ties that matched the groom's; they also donned the same burgundy-and-gray polka dot socks as Bill.
Dagmara asked Bill's twin brother's wife to join her bridal party as one of her bridesmaids, alongside five of her close friends. Each woman wore a different blush-colored dress (several chose styles from BHLDN), varying the silhouette, necklines, beading, and fabric to suit her own taste and personality. Bill's groomsmen included his twin brother and Dagmara's brother, plus several friends.
The bride's bouquet, designed by event planner By Emily B., matched the tone of the rest of the décor. "The theme was romantic, lush, rich, and autumnal," says Dagmara. "The colors we chose stemmed from that theme and my desire to incorporate burgundy, gray, velvet, and greenery into the scheme."
Saying "I Do"
Dagmara and Bill planned an afternoon ceremony at Our Lady of Fatima, a Catholic church in New London, New Hampshire; the service was officiated by Father Robert Biron. The bride and groom's respective aunts each read part of the religious text, while the couple followed the traditional ceremony wording. "We did not write our own vows," says Dagmara, since they really liked the classics.
Dagmara and Bill happily greeted their dog, Mickie, who wore a floral garland while joining the couple for portraits post-ceremony. Seeing the pup was one of the most unexpectedly happy moments of the day, says Dagmara: "Having Mickie arrive for the pictures was very sweet, since it wasn't 100% that he would be there."
An Antique Ride
The bride and groom's ride, an antique car, was another highlight: Bill's Uncle Rip chauffeured the newlyweds in the 1936 Model A Ford, which had belonged to Bill's grandfather.
Their First Toast
After the ceremony, the couple returned to Sweep Well Estate—the weekend accommodations the groom's brother rented for the newlyweds as a wedding gift—for their portraits. "The house was a converted stone barn, which was originally part of the historic John Hay Estate," says Bill. One of the groomsmen gifted them a bottle of Veuve Clicquot for their first toast as husband and wife.
On the Waterfront
Dagmara and Bill took advantage of one of Lake Sunapee Yacht Club's biggest selling points—its waterfront location—and arrived by boat to their reception. They climbed into the vintage wooden Chris Craft, piloted by a family friend, with Champagne and blankets to stay warm during the trip across the lake.
A Thrilling Arrival
As they pulled up to the club, their friends and family greeted them from the terrace—this became one of their favorite moments of the day. "The arrival was so special," says Dagmara. "Just seeing everyone gathered to welcome us was amazing."
Sweet and Savory
Over Their Heads
The couple left their long wooden reception tables without tablecloths, choosing instead to accent them with loosely gathered gray linen runners that pooled on the floor at the end of each table. They placed red taper candles in glass or gold holders along the runner and wrapped overhead beams with hanging greenery and berries that took the place of traditional centerpieces.
At Each Place
Dark gray linens provided a rich backdrop for the place settings. The natural wooden plates were accented with lighter gray napkins and burgundy place cards.
Their First Dance
For their first dance as husband and wife, the couple chose an enduring classic: "At Last" by Etta James. "I think the sentimentality of the lyrics and tone of the song speaks for itself," says Bill. "It has a timelessness to it and an understated joyousness that fit us well."
A semi-naked caramel apple cake from Autumn Nomad rested on a marble and gold cake stand; orchids, berries, and other flowers added rich autumnal color to the confection. "We did a quick cake cutting," says Dagmara, "which was interrupted by our need to dance!"
They realized all their planning paid off, says the duo, as they sat down to dinner with their closest friends and family. "Seeing everyone together in one room, against the backdrop of the setting we had created, was very gratifying," adds Bill.
Photography, Jamie Mercurio
Location, Lake Sunapee Yacht Club; Our Lady of Fatima
Event planning and flowers, ByEmilyB.
Catering, Lake Sunapee Yacht Club
Stationery and calligraphy, Lulu & Roo Design Boutique
Cheese cake, Murray's Cheese
Cake and desserts, Autumn Nomad
Music, DJ TruMastr
Rentals, Peak Event Services
Bride's gown, Allure Bridals
Bride's accessories, Kleinfeld veil; Stuart Weitzman shoes
Bridesmaids' dresses, BHLDN
Groom's suit, Suit Supply