If you love Disney and donuts, puppies and popcorn, macarons and movies, fairytale venues, and believe that everyone deserves to have the wedding of their dreams, then buckle up and hold on for this amazing Johnstown wedding! I met Eden and Rochelle in a fun twist of fate when I walked into a local distillery and was introduced to these amazingly down-to-earth and kind women that were planning one heck of a wedding. Through several meetings, lots of emails and texts, and a super cute engagement session, I got to know these two amazing people and call them friends!
Eden and Ro met 8 years ago during a complicated time for the both of them, and Eden became a light during a dark time for Rochelle. They've been together ever since. Eden always begged Ro to propose to her in Disney World, and it was always a joke of how amazing it would be. The two took a trip to Florida with Eden’s family in October of 2017, and they shared that one of the best parts was going to Animal Kingdom. Little did Eden know, Rochelle had the ring.... but it was back at the hotel! She waited until the next day at their favorite beach in Clearwater. Ro knew she wanted to ask the big question at sunset, but Eden decided she needed pizza right as the sun was setting! So with a slight delay, they sat in the sand and Ro told her that she had a letter for her to read. When she opened the envelope it was her beautiful ring. She paused for what seemed like forever, and then said, “WAIT. Did you ask my dad?!?!?” (of course she did!) Another long pause... then Ro just had to ask, “so is that a yes?” …YES! She said yes! Later on that evening Rochelle distinctly remembers Eden saying, “Wait, you couldn't have done this yesterday at DISNEY?!?!” Either way, she said yes! …and then FaceTimed every human imaginable that entire night to tell them!
Their favorite thing to do together is travel. They’ve done some amazing things: hiked the Smoky Mountains, watched dolphins migrate up the coast in Cape May New Jersey, been to Florida so many times, enjoying sunsets, Disney, and Harry Potter World. The very first vacation they went on, Eden surprised Rochelle with an experience of holding a baby tiger (her favorite animal)! They have always loved traveling together, and long car rides don't bother them, it gives them time to always connect and fall even more in love with every adventure!
And what an adventure this wedding was! The day started at the Hampton Inn where everyone in their 16 person bridal party got ready for the big day, all in the same hallway! I snuck in some shots of their incredibly fun and thoughtful details, like the grape soda cap pins from “Up”, Ro’s Gryffindor socks and Harry Potter handkerchief, and their something old, new, borrowed, and blue which were special gifts from their grandmothers, aunts. and mothers. Eden shared a beautiful first look with her dad, where he placed a penny in her shoe and then put it on her foot (how Cinderella-like!), then the two women shared their first look together in some peace and calm and quiet before hopping on the trolley!
The decor at the Grande Hall was spectacular, each table having a unique vignette of the couple’s favorite Disney movies, sprinkled with macaron’s under mini glass domes (hello, Beauty and the Beast!). All these nestled next to hot tea bags with “drink me” on the tag to match the “eat me” tag on the macs! Guests enjoyed a snack PRE ceremony, too, from a vintage popcorn machine, allowing them to munch through a 17 minute slideshow of the couples most treasured photos together to start off the ceremony. The couple exchanged their first “kiss” as married women by gifting each other necklaces with an acorn and a thimble pendant, reminiscent of the kiss exchange between Wendy and Peter in the Peter Pan movie.
After post-ceremony photos at the gorgeous Forest Lawn Cemetery, we returned via trolley to the Grande Hall where guests had been busy enjoying a dozen adoptable puppies from A Darrah Bull Bully Rescue, and of course breaking the internet with the cuteness and kisses and all the pup-selfies! We snapped some quick photos with the adorable pups before grand entrances, and then DJ Jack Labarko started off the night with an awesomely curated Disney dinner music playlist, and then the best mix of dance music through the ages all night! My favorite was the cloud machine expertly used to make Eden and Ro’s very special choreographed first dance to “A Million Dreams” from the Greatest Showman look like there were literally dancing on a cloud!
Enjoy some of my favorite highlights from this extremely well-produced and insanely unique wedding!
Photography: Jill Gearhart Photography assisted by Rachel Russel
Venue: The Grand Halle Johnstown PA
Hair: Whitney Helman, Real Deal Salon; .Amber Mertens
Bridesmaids Dresses: White Lace Bridal
Tuxes: White Lace Bridal
Florals: Penna Flower Company @pennaflowercompany Taylor Pascuzzo
Cake: Peace, Love & Little Donuts - Monroeville
Caterer: Anthony's Restaurant
Favors: Macaron's from La Gourmandine (Hazelwood location)
Transportation: Rix Limo (Trolley Service)
Puppy Adoption Event: A Darrah Bull Bully Rescue