By Liz Petoniak
Photographs from Stan Franzos, Mitch Franzos, and Jason Snyder

After four years together, Joshua Franzos proposed to Meryl Humphrey with his mother’s reset diamond as they sat in the herb garden at Mellon Park — their favorite place — accompanied by Meryl’s Jack Russell Terrier, Lando. “We really blossomed as a couple, and understood who we were and the direction we wanted to go in, which was the same,” Meryl says. “So, of course, it was a no-brainer. He’s a beautiful person, and I wanted to share my life with him.” On the big day, the visual and sensory-minded pair (Joshua is a photographer and filmmaker, and Meryl is a writer) headed back to the park to take photos, where the whole family, including Joshua’s late father, Stan, got involved behind the lens. Wanting to create an experience their 40 guests would enjoy, Meryl and Joshua opted for an intimate and eccentrically beautiful ceremony and reception, with a touch of Prohibition-era flair, at the Mansions on Fifth Hotel. They dined on grass-fed beef and delighted in Prantl’s Burnt Almond Torte, embellished with edible butterflies, all while accordionist Henry Doktorski set the fun, quirky tone with old-fashioned French music. “Everything about it was fun,” says Meryl. “It was a great day, and every day it gets better. The best is yet to come.”

Meryl Humphrey and Joshua Franzos, Pittsburgh weddings, WHIRL Wedding Guide 2015

Meryl donned a form-fitting silk dress by Caroline DeVillo and a fascinator veil, while Joshua sported a three-piece pinstripe suit as a nod to the fashions in Boardwalk Empire.

Meryl Humphrey and Joshua Franzos, Pittsburgh weddings, WHIRL Wedding Guide 2015

Joshua enlisted tintype photographer Jason Snyder to take pictures of all the guests in the vintage style of photography, once popular in the late 1800s, as mementos of the day.

Meryl Humphrey and Joshua Franzos, Pittsburgh weddings, WHIRL Wedding Guide 2015

The bride added quirky touches, like a skeleton key and deer skull, to terrarium centerpieces from greenSinner. The morning of the wedding, the couple picked up flowers at Whole Foods to place in old apothecary and medicine jars. And, Hepatica Florist crafted Meryl’s bouquet to resemble a “decaying British Estate.”

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