By Andrea Bosco + Anna Galanis
Photographs from Palermo Photo

“True love knows no height,” and for Stefanie Lombardo and Brian Leonard, the saying was literal to Brian’s magical proposal at 11,000 feet elevation. While enjoying a ski trip in Vail, Colo., with friends, Brian, an NFL running back, popped the question at the top of Eagles Nest Ridge. Their friends caught the entire proposal on their GoPro, and Brian flew both families in for the special occasion, surprising Stefanie at the bottom of the mountain! The couple, who met three years prior through a mutual friend, decided to host their elegant nuptials in Pittsburgh, Stefanie’s hometown. They hired The Event Group to create an enchanting wedding ceremony at First Lutheran Church and reception at the Omni William Penn Hotel for 250 guests.

Stefanie Lombardo and Brian Leonard, Pittsburgh weddings, WHIRL Wedding Guide 2015

After months of traveling in search of the perfect gown, Stefanie fatefully met Tara Nattini, president of the bridal design company Isabelle Armstrong, on a flight. Nattini transported dresses to a shop in New Jersey, where Stefanie chose “the one.” “You can call it serendipity,” says the bride.

Stefanie Lombardo and Brian Leonard, Pittsburgh weddings, WHIRL Wedding Guide 2015

Bella Christie & Lil’ Z’s Sweet Boutique designed a whimsical four-tiered cake in blush and white tones, mixing feminine ruffles and a more masculine quilted pattern, as per Stefanie’s inspiration. An array of flavors included chocolate with Bavarian cream and fresh strawberries; and almond with raspberry mousse bedecked in Champagne buttercream.

Stefanie Lombardo and Brian Leonard, Pittsburgh weddings, WHIRL Wedding Guide 2015

The bride and groom enlisted Allison McGeary Florist to create an ethereal look with cascading Spanish moss, vintage candlesticks, and florals in soft shades.

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