Elizabeth Deresz & Tyler Stevens
Aug 4, 2018
Charleston , South Carolina
It’s hard to find a secluded place to propose in the hustle and bustle of Manhattan but with strategy and quick thinking, Tyler pulled off the surprise perfectly. On a spring evening, he got down on one knee inside Gramercy Park, a private park that requires a key to enter. The ring was exquisite, more beautiful and perfect than I could have imagined. I said yes and we could not stop smiling. Before the excitement of our engagement had even started to settle in he says “oh wait, there’s more.” He planned a dinner for the two of us at Gramercy Tavern and drinks at Rose Bar with friends before retiring to our suite upstairs at the Gramercy Park Hotel. The next day we had a couples massage in the morning and lunch at our local favorite, Locanda Verde. All this before we hopped on a flight to Bermuda for a surprise three day trip to paradise. Even still I’m awestruck. I don’t know if a better proposal has ever been planned.
It didn’t take long for us to decide that we didn’t really need a lengthy engagement. Friends and siblings joked that I was a “90-day fiancée” (it was actually only 78). But since Tyler and I already lived together with our puppy, Archie, in TriBeCa and were excited by all the things we would do after the wedding; buy a house and start a family. We didn’t want to wait to get married. It came together quickly and we kept the guest list small. I focused on the things that mattered to us and the things I would remember most; hand-gilded oyster shell place cards (we ate a lot of oysters that summer), wine special ordered from a vineyard in Chile where we stayed earlier in the year, ceviche from 167 Raw (a must when in Charleston), my mother arranged for a carriage ride, I asked my aunt to write a poem. All in all, I was lucky that the venue, The Parsonage, was so completely perfect. It had everything I needed and the logistics were so easy. I was also lucky that the dress I liked didn’t need to be custom ordered and that all of the vendors I used were so great to deal with.
The Big Day
We started the day in the dining room with mimosas and ladies brunch (while the men played golf). Once it was time to get ready the historic charm of the second floor served as an ideal dressing area and the expansive porches perfect for photos. I’ll never forget the look on my father’s face or the tear in his eye as I came down the stairs and he saw me for the first time. Our ceremony in the chapel was personal and intimate. We had sabered champagne and took family portraits in the lush courtyard. A traditional Charleston horse-drawn carriage brought us through the streets of downtown before arriving at Anson Restaurant for our reception. The food was delicious and paired perfectly with the wine we had specially brought in from a recent trip. The day was a magical whirlwind but the special joy of being a bride was extended one more day when we had the opportunity to take photos on the beach in our wedding attire.
An idyllic, 10-day California road trip along the PCH from Los Angeles to San Francisco. A perfect mix of adventure and luxury, we took in the coastal sights and fresh air with the wind in our hair as we toured around in our convertible. We started the trip relaxing on the beach in Malibu before continuing on to explore Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo, hiking in Big Sur and playing a round of golf at Pebble Beach. The second half of our trip was all about relaxation and wine tasting in the Napa Valley. Our cottage in Carneros was charming tranquility. The outdoor tub and our own courtyard fire pit made a perfect, private retreat. We explored amazing vineyards and had outstanding meals at award-winning restaurants.
The Parsonage at St. Johannes
Kelli Shaw Designs & Charleston Florist
Wild Flour Pastry
RENTALS & DECOR
Lashes and Lace
FAVORS & GIFTS
The Surfrider Malibu, Cameros Resort & Spa
Palmetto Carriage Works