See how these two tied the knot while announcing they were engaged to their closest friends and family.
The Meet Cute: The couple met online in April 2018. Justin is from Boston and Tommy is from Rhode Island. After a month of exchanging phone calls and texts, they decided to finally meet in person. “There seemed to be a spark there and we felt like it was worth taking our time to do it right,” Tommy recalls. They arranged a day date: Justin took the train down to Providence and Tommy took him to Figidini, where he’s friends with owners Kara and Frankie. Kara ended up officiating their wedding.
The Engagement: The two moved in together rather quickly. Tommy was about to open his salon, St. Germain Studio, and Justin was between apartments in Boston. They moved in four months later on a trial basis, but found it to be quite easy. That was fall 2018. When the pandemic hit, it was a test for any relationship. “I didn’t want to kill him, and it brought us together even closer,” Tommy laughs. “Neither of us were ever into marriage, but after the pandemic, I felt like I needed to marry him.” He went to Doumato Jewelers and had a custom ring made for him and surprise-proposed on New Year’s Eve 2020. After the initial shock wore off (even stating at one point that he felt like he was going to die), Justin happily said yes.
The Wedding Plans: Rosanna Ortiz, founder of StyleWeek, and her husband bought a house in Tiverton on a peninsula with a gorgeous view. Amanda, who made the wedding rings, wanted to hold an engagement party. The grooms’ families hadn’t met yet, so this was the perfect opportunity. As the planning was coming together, Rosanna remarked how beautiful it was going to be and suggested making it their wedding. After some consideration, they turned it into a small surprise wedding, about fifty to sixty guests. All of the guests, including the grooms’ parents, thought they were coming to an engagement party. At the beginning of the party, they made an announcement. “I know that you came here under the impression this is an engagement party, but we’re actually getting married today,” Justin said. Kara came up and they jumped right into the ceremony.
The Highlights: “The fact it was a surprise wedding was definitely the biggest moment,” Tommy says. “The reaction was pretty wild.” Tommy’s Aunt Jennifer had gifted them a handmade broom as a housewarming gift, but they used it to jump the broom as a nod to Justin’s heritage at the end of the ceremony to make the union official.
Ceremony and Reception Location: Private property in Tiverton, RI | Catering: Pranzi Catering & Events | Cake: Shannon Bakery | Open Bar: Gasbarro’s Wines | Bar and Seating: Uniquely Chic Vintage | Hair: St. Germain Studio | Tuxedos: Perry Ellis at Macy’s | Florals: Hawthorn Designs | DJ: Joey Silva | Table Rentals: RI Rentals via Advanced Production and Design | Wedding Bands and Rings: Doumato Jewelers