Last September, I had the pleasure of working on a beautiful, unique wedding at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. What was so unique about this wedding? The décor…it was just the right amount of sparkle. But it’s where the sparkle came from that made it special. Our bride Elyse owns a business with her father called CJS Sales in Manhattan. They sell vintage jewelry parts and supplies, among fabulous other treasures and incorporated exquisite pieces from their own warehouse with the help of some of Elyse’s designer friends made this Art Deco wedding a visual wonder.
But first, let me introduce you to the Bride, Elyse Schimel Mues and her husband Adam… (here is a beautiful summary from the groom Adam!)
Elyse and Adam met through an online dating service in January of 2013. Their first date was dinner at an Italian restaurant in New York City followed by drinks and dancing at a nearby sports bar and club. Although the outline of the date was standard they both felt a strong early connection with one another. Adam began courting Elyse over the next several months with frequent dinners, movies, brunch, sporting event dates and whatever he could think of in order to spend time with her. Four months later they took a vacation to San Francisco and had many exciting adventures including the idea that they wanted to move in together when they returned to New York City. Adam quickly realized that she was a wonderful supportive person that he would be lucky to spend the rest of his life with. After about a year of living together, Adam proposed to Elyse at his childhood home in Nebraska while the two were visiting for his high school class reunion. Although Elyse had been waiting for some time for this news, the proposal was a surprise to her and she was very excited to share the news with family and to introduce herself as Adam’s fiancé.
After a whirlwind engagement and planning period of 3 months, Elyse and Adam decided to have their wedding at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in New York City. They chose the location for its classy Deco period style and elegance. Extended family and friends traveled to New York City for the event and for mini vacations. The wedding had a Deco theme highlighting Elyse’s business (and her own personal style) that included unusual jewelry and stones used in the couple’s clothing, accessories, wedding cake, and in the ceremony itself. This included rhinestone embellishments to Elyse’s dress and Adam’s cuff links, tuxedo set and cummerbund were all custom made with rhinestones and other jewels from Elyse’s company. Although everyone was trying to absorb all of the beauty, style and emotions surrounding the occasion, both Elyse and Adam admit that the event was difficult to remember in totality. The wedding day was filled with excitement and chaos, but everything went according to plan and was considered by everyone to be an enormous success.
Elyse’s wanted to wear Galia Lahav and was able to find her dream dress at Bridal Reflections. Additional beading and trims were selected by her friend, Ranjana Khan, jewelry designer whose pieces are frequently worn by the first lady Michelle Obama. Adam’s dinner jacket, tux pants, shirt and bow tie were all custom made by TOM BARNETT Bespoke Clothing.
Head designer of Miriam Haskel (1968 – 1978), Larry Vrba designed the boutonnière, studs and cuff links for Adam.
Larry Vrba also designed Elyses’s head piece, top of her bridal gown and her cuff.
In keeping with the theme of incorporating my company’s vintage jewelry parts into my wedding, Floralia Decorators went above and beyond what any luxury flower and event decorators would be expected to do. Getting dirty, they came to my 5,000 square foot warehouse three or four times, digging for antique treasures they could use for my wedding. Floralia picked out vintage rhinestone broaches, which were attached to ribbon and used as decorative napkin rings for the place settings and doubled as a gift for the guests to take home. They also picked vintage rhinestone necklaces and belts that were draped on the back of guests chairs as decorations as opulent as the roaring twenties. Next, Floralia picked out boxes of antique hand blown French crystal chandelier parts (also from CJS) to decorate the flowers and candelabras. It was spectacular. Additionally, Lion head cuff links designed by my father in the 1960’s under his previous company Kim Craftsmen (1950’s to 1990’s, which produced over 100 million pieces of jewelry in the garment center and has been featured in museums and jewelry books) were also incorporated into the table settings as decoration and gifts for the gentlemen guests to take home as party favors. The table looked beautiful and guests are still talking about the precious treasures they got to take home. A lion Judith Leiber purse frame was dug up at CJS and chosen to be the ring box.
Each of the 63 chairs were fastened on the back with vintage rhinestone necklaces and belts that were all from CJS Sales.
These are the cufflinks that Elyse’s dad designed in the 1960’s, each gentleman guest took a pair as a favor. The ladies each had their own unique vintage broach that they were able to take home.
What’s a wedding without some sweet treats! My friend Kate Sullivan of Cake Power made the adorable topper and the pastry chef of the Waldorf Astoria made the wedding cake. Elyse’s cousin, Sabrina Kuratana who owns Art Gallery Cookies, made the delicious and amazingly decorated cookies.
Congrats Elyse and Adam!