Gothic Meets Glam For This Spooky Halloween-Inspired Wedding

When your first date is a candlelit picnic in a cemetery followed by a tour of some of your city’s most haunted spots, it only makes sense that your wedding day would be totally spook-tacular!

Kristi + Justin’s October wedding in Orlando was an elevated and elegant take on that first date. With the help of planners from Wilder Mind Events, they filled The Howey Mansion (a Mediterranean Revival masterpiece of a venue built in the 1920’s) with all kinds of macabre and frightfully fabulous details.

“We strive to be like the Addams Family,” say Kristi + Justin, “gothic, unique, true to ourselves, and endlessly in love with each other.”

There was a stunning black lace wedding gown. There were carved pumpkin table numbers. There was an alligator ring bearer. (!!!) And photographer Stephanie Lanni was there behind the camera, catching it all.

Let’s get into all the tricks and treats of Kristi + Justin’s big day!!

The bride + groom’s ring came from bespoke jeweler Taylor & Hart, and Justin designed Kristi’s engagement ring using details from rings that appear in two of Kristi’s faves: Buffy the Vampire Slayer and the gothic romance film Crimson Peak. And how perfect is that coffin shaped ring box?!

Kristi + Justin designed their gothic-inspired invitations with Zazzle. And we can think of no better wedding shoe for this occasion than Kristi’s studded and sparkly Pava Platform Sandals in black by Vince Camuto.

Moonstone Artistry was behind Kristi’s dramatic glam makeup look (that dark lip!!) and her stunning upswept wavy pony and face framing curls.

This Halloween-inspired mani is just too good. You’re going to need to check out our 57 cute Halloween nail designs and ideas to get on Kristi’s level.

Kristi knew the stylists at AB2B Boutique already, and they totally understood the black dress vibe she was searching for. They introduced her to this stunning strapless mermaid gown. “I was worried a black dress wouldn’t feel bridal,” says Kristi, “but once the veil was on I knew it was perfect.”

By the Bay Floral absolutely understood the Halloween-inspired assignment. This black-and-orange bridal bouquet is taking our breath away!!

Check out our list of 27 Fall bridesmaid dresses for the dreamiest autumn vibes to entertain the idea of moody maroon or oxblood bridesmaid dresses like the ones Kristi’s besties are rocking!

Nonstop gothic glamor!! Explore our collection of 45 elegant black wedding dresses sure to wow.

Justin’s Halloween pumpkin cufflinks are such a cute nod to the theme!

Of course the groomsmen are sporting socks with iconic horror film characters on them!! Look though our list of the 47 best groomsmen gifts to brainstorm the perfect day-of surprise for your bros.

The First Look

Our Favorite Memory From The Wedding

Our private first look on the staircase was something out of a dream. It was a moment for just the two of us that I'll never forget

Everyone, meet Sweetie the alligator!!

The couple paid homage to Kristi’s work as a former zoo keeper and her love of reptiles by having an alligator as the ring bearer! “I made a custom cabernet colored dress for Sweetie,” says Kristi, “to match the bridal party.”

“Before the ceremony began, Sweetie took a brief nap on my lap,” Kristi says. “It was a really peaceful moment during a wonderful but busy day.”

The Ceremony

These Halloween-tone florals look so at home on the stone steps of this historic mansion.

Our Musical Choices

Processional: "Halloween Theme" from the film "Halloween" +"Cry Little Sister" from the film "The Lost Boys" (piano covers by Stephen Beerkens)

Recessional: "This is Halloween" by Danny Elfman (from the film "The Nightmare Before Christmas")

First Dance: "Kiss From A Rose" by Seal (from the film "Batman Forever")

Justin’s black brocade velvet suit from StudioSuits is 100% Gomez Addams in his groom era.

By the Bay Floral included REAL death’s-head moths in Kristi’s bouquet!!

The Reception

Our Advice To Those Planning Now

While it is tempting to allow outside opinions to influence your wedding planning choices, when it's all said and done - the day is about you and your partner. So stay true to yourselves and make it the day you both envision!
Keeping spreadsheets, detailed records, and notes can help with both budgeting and peace of mind.
Details, details, details! That is what can make your wedding feel personal to you as a couple. Even the smallest things will be noticed and remembered by someone. Because we started planning so early, and we had such an excellent wedding planner, the week of my wedding was my most relaxed wedding planning week!

How eerie + adorable are these custom tombstone figurines!?

Take a look at our guide on how to throw a sophisticated + spooky soirée this Halloween if Kristi + Justin’s wedding has you inspired to do some otherworldly entertaining this spooky season!

It’s Tasty Too created a gothic-tiered wedding cake in Kristi + Justin’s colors that featured skeletal caricatures of the bride + groom!

The couple’s 66 guests enjoyed a feast from Arthur’s and festive carved pumpkin table numbers!

Kristi and her dad’s father daughter dance to “Edge of Seventeen” featured an iconic Stevie Nicks inspired shawl moment!!

Check out 103 father daughter dance songs to play at your wedding if you’re still searching for that special track.

And how fun is this for a drink after the reception: The Howey Mansion has a hidden speakeasy! Mr Howey (the original owner of the house) had it installed during prohibition to host meetings. There’s a hidden lever in his library that opens the door to the stairway down to the speakeasy.

Congratulations, Kristi + Justin!! Your Halloween-inspired wedding was hauntingly romantic! All the best from GWS!

photography: Stephanie Lanni Photography // venue name: Howey Mansion, The Howey Mansion, Florida, USA // planning: Wilder Mind Events // florals: By the Bay Floral // wedding dress boutique: AB2B Boutique // bride's ring: Taylor and Hart // hair stylist: Promising Looks // makeup artist: Moonstone Artistry // groom attire: Studio Suits // groom's ring: Taylor and Hart // paper goods: Zazzle // catering: Arthur's Catering // cake: Its Tasty Too // music: Our DJ Rocks // photo booth: Our DJ Rocks // alligator ring bearer: Sweetie the Alligator