By Rachel Jones

Cassandra Harper + Bill Hetherington

When a newly engaged Cassandra Harper and Bill Hetherington started looking for wedding venues, they knew the Omni William Penn Hotel would be perfect for their celebration. “We wanted a vintage vibe, and the Omni’s architecture fit that,” Cassandra says. With the help of The Event Group, the couple’s vision came to life with classic ivory and sparkly gold details. Cassandra dressed the part in a customized Stephen Yearick gown from Anne Gregory for The Bride, complete with beautiful lace sleeves and a bejeweled headpiece. Carrying a loose bundle of deep red, purple, and cream florals from Allison McGeary Florist, Cassandra made her way down the aisle at Calvary United Methodist Church. After saying, “I do,” the couple kicked off the reception with a first dance to “Unchained Melody” by the Righteous Brothers, a song the bride’s grandparents loved to dance to. “We took lessons for our first dance, but my dress was too big to do some of the moves,” Cassandra says. “We had to wing it!” The carefree, good times carried on throughout the night with Free Spirit keeping the dance floor packed and a DJ continuing the fun at an after-party in the hotel’s Urban Room. “It was a pretty special day,” Cassandra says. “Just being with everyone, knowing they’re all there for you and your husband. That’s the best part.”

Photographs from Timwill Photography

After almost two years of dating, Bill proposed to Cassandra on Christmas Eve. “It was really sweet.”

After almost two years of dating, Bill proposed to Cassandra on Christmas Eve. “It was really sweet.”

E.L.F. Entertainment took photos of every guest at the reception, which were then framed and gifted as sweet keepsakes from the day.

E.L.F. Entertainment took photos of every guest at the reception, which were then framed and gifted as sweet keepsakes from the day.

Bella Christie and Lil’ Z’s Sweet Boutique created a cake fit for the Great Gatsby himself, along with an eclectic dessert spread, to complement the cookie table that friends and family members happily contributed to.

Bella Christie and Lil’ Z’s Sweet Boutique created a cake fit for the Great Gatsby himself, along with an eclectic dessert spread, to complement the cookie table that friends and family members happily contributed to.

A chic, art deco-inspired monogram graced everything from the menus to the DJ booth.

A chic, art deco-inspired monogram graced everything from the menus to the DJ booth.

Franki Silverman + Aaron Zimmerman

Although she lived in Washington, D.C., and he resided in Connecticut, Franki Silverman and Aaron Zimmerman instantly knew they were meant to be together. After a year of long distance dating, a move to New York, and a Thanksgiving Day proposal, the well-traveled couple began making plans for a Pittsburgh wedding. “I grew up in the Squirrel Hill area, so I knew I always wanted to be in Pittsburgh on my wedding day,” Franki says. “When looking for a venue, [Fairmont Pittsburgh] seemed perfect. We were looking for a modern venue in the Downtown area, and this made the most sense for us.” Adding to the sleek vibe, the couple decorated the space in cool blues, purples, silvers, and golds. Looking glamorous themselves in an Amsale gown and BLACK by Vera Wang tuxedo, Franki and Aaron celebrated their love with almost 200 guests. Franki was most excited about sharing the day with her family, who traveled from all over to attend, and even gave a nod to her grandparents by placing the cake topper from their wedding day atop the confection she and Aaron cut into. “The whole day and night was perfect.”

Photographs from Studio Bash

Franki looked stunning in a fitted lace gown with a dramatic open back. “I had a dress in mind and found the exact one.”

Franki looked stunning in a fitted lace gown with a dramatic open back. “I had a dress in mind and found the exact one.”

Per tradition, Franki and Aaron enjoyed the Hora with their guests.

Per tradition, Franki and Aaron enjoyed the Hora with their guests.

Soft bouquets of blue hydrangeas, white roses, and pops of purple complemented the delicate dresses worn by Franki and her bridesmaids.

Soft bouquets of blue hydrangeas, white roses, and pops of purple complemented the delicate dresses worn by Franki and her bridesmaids.

Aire Plichta + Matt Reese

Initially, Aire Plichta and Matt Reese thought an outdoor, carnival-themed wedding would be the perfect way to celebrate the fun love they share. But they found themselves more enamored by having the St. Nicholas Cathedral Room serve as their reception space. “It’s such a pretty room,” Aire says. “I thought a carnival wouldn’t do it justice.” Instead, the couple combined Matt’s love of history and inspiration from Aire’s grandparents’ silverware set from The World’s Fair to create a new theme. A vintage ticket booth that presented place cards, games during cocktail hour, and images from the original event made guests feel like they had traveled to a ball on the opening day of The World’s Fair. Leona’s Ice Cream Sandwiches even created fresh desserts with treats from the cookie table and ice cream from an old-fashioned cart! The sweetest moment for Aire was sharing her first dance with Matt to “Future Days” by Pearl Jam. The number preceded the father-daughter dance as well as a mother-daughter dance. “They’re both very important to me, so I wanted to do something special for my mom, too,” Aire says. Toward the end of their song, Aire’s father, sister, and new husband joined in, and they all danced together. “I loved that moment,” Aire says. “I’m so glad we did that.”

Photographs from Laura Pegg and Courtney Wright

Aire carried an Eco Flower bouquet comprised of wooden blooms, which complemented the colors of her custom-made, chiffon gown by Mara Chua. “They still look pretty realistic, and they’ll last forever!”

Aire carried an Eco Flower bouquet comprised of wooden blooms, which complemented the colors of her custom-made, chiffon gown by Mara Chua. “They still look pretty realistic, and they’ll last forever!”

Aire and Matt had some fun on their own before the reception, posing for photos on the PNC Carousel.

Aire and Matt had some fun on their own before the reception, posing for photos on the PNC Carousel.

Iconic images from The World’s Fair carried Aire and Matt’s theme throughout their reception space.

Iconic images from The World’s Fair carried Aire and Matt’s theme throughout their reception space.


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