Kristen & Michael’s Pink & Gray Wedding at The Crystal Ballroom

It’s true, we’re hopeless romantics. We love a great story just as much as the beautiful details of a wedding. After all, it’s not everyday a couple meets during a mutual friend’s Halloween party and falls in love. That’s exactly what happened to Kristen and Michael back in October of 2007. The two hit it off, and even though Michael was in a full face mask, Kristen was totally smitten by him. Not only did Kristen always know Michael was “the one”, but also knew what she wanted when it came time to planning their wedding at The Crystal Ballroom. Throughout all of the details, Kristen combined Michael’s love for modern with her love for vintage. The end result? Pure magic and it was all captured seamlessly by Abella Studios.

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Modern Wedding Invitations | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

“My flowers were romantic. Once I saw pale pink peonies online as a bouquet I knew they just had to be mine. They complimented my all lace dress beautifully.”

Pink peony bridal bouquet | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Finding the perfect wedding gown was the easiest process for Kristen. It only took one trip to Cinderella Bridals―with her mother, mother-in-law, and maid of honor―and within an hour, Kristen found her gown. She immediately fell in love with an A-line, full lace gown with three-quarter sleeves, buttons lining the entire back, and a scalloped v-neck covering a sweetheart underlay. A beaded sash and Vera Wang two-tiered, raw-edged cathedral veil completed her look.

Bridal portraits | Lace wedding gowns | Contemporary Bride Magazine

The Crystal Ballroom at the Radisson Hotel of Freehold was one of the most elegant locations Kristen and Michael visited when choosing a ceremony and reception location. They loved the modern style of the décor, including spectacular crystal chandeliers and a large dance floor.

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Cherry blossoms | Wedding ceremony decor | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Hydrangea bridesmaid bouquets | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

“I wrote a blessing that was personalized for Michael and his fellow members of the FDNY for the Priest to read during the ceremony. Michael’s job is a huge part of who he is and what kind of man he’s become. We wanted to make note that we pray for the members of the FDNY EMS and the Firefighters and their safety every day.”

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Bridal party portraits | Contemporary Bride Magazine

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Calla lily tablescape | Contemporary Bride Magazine

First dance | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Sweetheart tables | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Custom wedding card boxes | Contemporary Bride Magazine

The wedding cake was a simple design of silver and gray striped on two tiers, while the middle tier was adorned with fondant buttons to match the back of Kristen’s dress. Sweet and delicate pale pink sugar flowers were scattered throughout, while a cake topper of a bride and groom sitting on a motorcycle added a personal touch.

Modern wedding cakes | Contemporary Bride Magazine

The Proposal: Michael proposed on a cruise we went on July 11, 2011. He waited until the formal night when we were all dolled up and took me to the top of the ship pretending to want a different view. He started apologizing to me because earlier that day a woman at the pool asked if we were married and I had to explain that we weren’t, but hopefully someday. Then he dropped down on one knee and popped the question. I was overwhelmed I didn’t even say yes I just kept saying “are you serious?!” I think I always knew he was the one. I fought it for a little while, but being with him is the best decision I’ve ever made.
Bride’s favorite memory of the day: The entire ceremony is my favorite memory. Trying to keep it together while holding my soon to be husband’s hands. Looking into his eyes, knowing this was it. It was indescribable.
Groom’s favorite memory of the day: Seeing Kristen walk down the aisle with her father.
What was the most exciting part of planning your wedding? Dress shopping.
Do you have any advice for couples that are planning their wedding? Take your time. We were engaged for 20 months and I was able to plan at my leisure, find great deals, and really put thought into the details.
What are you currently enjoying or looking forward to as a couple? I’m enjoying quality time with my wife in our new house without the stress of planning a wedding. I’m looking forward to spending the rest of my life with her and starting a family.

NJ Real Wedding at Crystal Ballroom | Hotels Unlimited | Contemporary Bride Magazine

Ceremony & Reception Location: Crystal Ballroom / Officiant: Father Charles Costello / Photographer: Abella Studios / Entertainment: Elite Sound Entertainment / Florist: Brandywine Floral Design / Cake Designer: Chocolate Carousel / Bridal Salon & Headpiece: Cinderella Bridals / Veil: Vera Wang / Shoes: Pinup Couture / Formal Attire: Tuxedo World of Staten Island / Invitations: 123print.com / Favors: Decks of Personalized Playing Cards / Hair Salon: The Salon at Manalapan / Makeup Artist: Dawn Rose Makeup Artistry / Honeymoon Location: Carnival Cruise Line

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