When initially deciding on the location of their St. Petersburg wedding venue, Kristina and Ryan realized that home is where the heart is.
“Being that we longed for our hometown with all our friends and family, we decided on a St. Pete wedding by the water, where we both grew up,” the bride explained.
The New York City couple’s blush, gold, champagne and mint wedding was centered around a traditional Catholic ceremony and a waterfront wedding venue with great service and a modern look.
“We live in the Sunshine state! I explicitly did not want to have our wedding in a hotel ballroom, due to the fact there are typically no windows and natural light,” Kristina shared. “We chose the St. Pete Museum of Fine Arts for their vaulted ceiling with floor-to-ceiling windows, their fresh, prevailing look and the proximity to the water.”
To capture their special day, the bride and groom sought out a St. Petersburg wedding photographer who could provide unique and memorable photos.
“I was really looking for something out of the ordinary that would not look like it was taken on a regular camera. I desired someone with a passion for unique shots outside and indoors and who took the time to plan amazing shot locations, while also having the ultimate clarity in all the photos,” Kristina explained. “Jess [of Limelight Photography] was able to make my husband smile naturally which is not an easy feat. The lighting was beyond something I could ever envision my wedding photos could look like.
With her wedding photographer in place, the bride focused on hiring a St. Pete wedding florist who could understand her vision.
“Frankly, I am not too much of a flower person, so it was important to have a florist who understood that,” Kristina shared. “Iza [of Iza's Flowers] was incredibly attentive, very dedicated to her job and very knowledgeable in flowers. I was able to have my dream wedding on a very reasonable budget. I wanted ornate décor, and she was able to provide that without me having to stress about buying décor to create the looks I had been pinning on Pinterest.”
Looking back, one of the bride’s most memorable moments happened just moments before she started down the aisle.
“I started walking down the aisle with my dad, and I had told myself I wouldn't cry, but I started sobbing. My dad whispered to me to keep it together, and I chuckled inside,” Kristina reminisced.
What did you look for in a wedding makeup artist?
I wanted a makeup artist who would be able to create an elegant updo for the look I was envisioning along with natural appearing makeup, but enough to enhance my look. Michele Renee The Studio's service was amazing.
How would you describe your theme?
With both of us being Catholic, it was essential to have a traditional catholic ceremony. My family is originally from Slovakia, where we are used to very old gothic type churches, and I instantaneously fell in love with Sacred Heart Catholic Church because there is no other church in the southeast with cathedrals like that.
What were your colors?
Blush, gold, champagne and touch of mint. I have forever treasured neutral light colors, and I felt the palette blended exceptionally well.
What did you look for in a wedding photographer?
I was really looking for something out of the ordinary that would not look like it was taken on a regular camera. I desired someone with a passion for unique shots outside and indoors and who took the time to plan amazing shot locations, while also having the ultimate clarity in all the photos.
Limelight Photography did our engagement session and also our wedding day. Our engagement photos were amazing and our photographer, Jess, was able to make my husband smile naturally which is not an easy feat. She was so attentive and our photos are a work of art. The lighting was beyond something I could ever envision my wedding photos could look like. We have always had an appreciation of great photography, and Jess’s work blew us away. We highly recommend them!
Ryan came to visit me for a weekend during my medical school externship in Jacksonville. We went on a ghost tour of the iconic St. Augustine lighthouse and were the last people exploring the top of the lighthouse. As the night was ending, I witnessed this very young couple get engaged. In spite, I swiftly walked around to the other side of the lighthouse, not wanting to ruin the moment and at the same time wishing it had been me. Ryan kept begging to come take a photo with him and finally persuaded an elderly couple, unknowingly to me, to record a video. Then it happened, Ryan got down on one knee and proposed!
What did you look for in a wedding venue?
For our wedding venue, I desired a classy, elegant location, something striking and not your standard hotel ballroom. I sought high ceilings and a plenty of windows with natural lighting. The main area of the Museum of Fine Arts fit those requirements! I liked the fresh, clean look of the museum and that the cocktail hour would be on the terrace facing Tampa Bay. The service was impeccable and on point. My husband and I were taken care of like royalty.
What was the inspiration for your wedding food?
The food was the most important part of the wedding for my family and I. Unfortunately, we had been to other weddings where the food was not palatable, or it was completely cold by the time it arrived.
Olympia Catering went above and beyond to make sure everything was perfect. Our cake was also a work of art and tasted amazing. Our guests raved that we had the best wedding food they have ever had! The servers were attentive making sure everyone got appetizers and drinks. We did have people who did not show up the day of the wedding and had some cancellations the week prior and Olympia Catering was kind enough to take those people off the list without charging us.
What did you look for in a wedding florist?
Frankly, I am not too much of a flower person, so it was important to have a florist who understood that.
Our wedding planner recommended Iza's Flowers. Iza was incredibly attentive and able to provide the full spectrum of flowers I desired within my budget. She is a very dedicated to her job and very knowledgeable in flowers. I was able to have my dream wedding on a very reasonable budget. I wanted ornate décor, and she was able to provide that without me having to stress about buying décor to create the looks I had been pinning on Pinterest.
Why did you choose to have a photo booth?
The photo booth was added to help make the wedding more entertaining and fun. My whole family is very light hearted and goofy, so it helped incorporate our personalities. Our guests told us they loved the interaction and the photo stick as a memory!
ShutterBooth was recommended by our wedding planner, and their service was amazing. The photo booth attendant was so attentive and kind, and at the end of the night we got a lovely book.
What advice would you give to other Tampa Bay Brides?
If you can afford it, get a full-time wedding planner. It will make your life and wedding planning drastically easier. Being a current medical resident in the hospital and working 90-hours a week, I needed someone to keep me in check. There were literally zero bumps in our wedding day. Everything went smoothly and was so organized that I could enjoy the day.
Ceremony Venue: Sacred Heart Catholic Church
Reception Venue: St. Pete Museum of Fine Arts
Photographer: Limelight Photography – Jess Orthober *Marry Me Tampa Bay Preferred Wedding Pro
Videographer: Hearts Video
Planner: Confetti Events
Florist: Iza's Flowers
Caterer: Olympia Catering *Marry Me Tampa Bay Preferred Wedding Pro
Tuxedo Rentals: Men's Warehouse
Cake: Olympia Catering *Marry Me Tampa Bay Preferred Wedding Pro
DJ: DJ Knex
Dress Shop and Designer: CC's Bridal Boutique – Allure Couture
Bridesmaid Dress Shop and Designer: Bella Bridesmaids – Jim Hjelm
Hair & Makeup: Michele Renee the Studio *Marry Me Tampa Bay Preferred Wedding Pro
Photo Booth: ShutterBooth *Marry Me Tampa Bay Preferred Wedding Pro