📸: Move Mountains Co // @movemtnsco
The Meet Cute
Those medical dramas may just be on to something, after all: These two New Jersey natives first became smitten during their medical residency training.
On the way back home from a trip to Boston, Artem surprised Olivia with what she thought was a spur of the moment visit to the scenic Tower Hill Botanic Garden in Boylston, Massachusetts. In actuality, the whole day had been planned out. “He took us to the top of an overlook, where he got down on one knee and proposed!” Olivia recalls.
“I always envisioned being surrounded by candles, flowers and neutral colors—lots of creams and whites with natural greenery,” Olivia says of the wedding’s modern meets traditional aesthetic. “Our vendors did an amazing job bringing our vision to life.” She and Artem also wanted a venue located in-between Boston and New Jersey with a destination wedding feel. Belle Mer ticked all the boxes. “It was the first and only venue we visited.” Olivia explains. We fell in love with the clean lines of the venue and its panoramic views of the ocean.”
The venue and most of the vendors were fully booked just a few months prior to the pandemic’s start. “At that time, both of us were working in the hospital caring for COVID patients, so the rest of the planning took a back seat,” Olivia says. “By the summer, we realized COVID was not going anywhere, and our wedding day was going to look a little different than what we had imagined.” Fortunately, their vendors remained supportive throughout. “Our wedding planner, Danielle, played a huge role in keeping us positive and excited. She always ensured us that it would be perfect no matter what,” Olivia says. The guest count underwent the biggest change, only getting finalized just three days before the big day. On the bright side, Olivia says the smaller, more intimate nature allowed them to spend more time with each guest and truly enjoy the day for themselves.
The First Look
“We wanted to be able to really take in the moment just the two of us and share any emotions we had with each other,” Olivia recalls. “There is so much going on leading up to that moment and the minute we saw each other we were immediately at ease. It made us excited to walk down the aisle!”
During the reception, the newlyweds chose to partake in the sometimes divisive yet always fun ‘wedding shoe game.’ For those unfamiliar, this involves each party holding their own shoe in one hand and their partner’s shoe in the other. They sit in chairs back-to-back and when asked a question (think: “who’s most likely to…?”), they must raise the shoe of the person they think it best applies to. So, were there any surprises? “We were mostly on the same page, but there were definitely a few, like when we were asked who the better cook is, we both picked ourselves!” Olivia laughs.
Easy. “Walking down the aisle as husband and wife!”
“The wedding planning process will be stressful no matter what. Try to make it fun: have a glass of wine when you and your partner sit down to tackle planning,” Olivia says.
Ceremony, Reception, Catering and Cake: Belle Mer in Newport, RI | Officiant: Steve Martins | Wedding Planner: Danielle Santanella of Em Devaud Events | Hair:Jenna Poitras of Zuri Lifestyle | Makeup: Sarah Elizabeth Artistry – Sea Glam | Bride’s Dress: Monique Lhuillier, Mark Ingram Atelier | Groom’s Suit: Hugo Boss | Flowers: Sayles Livingston Design | Ceremony Music: Harris Shilakowsky |Reception Music: Elite Entertainment |Signage: Steph B and Co on Etsy |Rentals: Peak Event Services | Favors: Newport Sea Salt Co. | Draping and Lightning: Exquisite Events | Transportation: Viking Tours of Newport