Nina + Charlie live in Brooklyn New York but picked a gorgeous (and brand new!) venue in upstate New York for their wedding – The Pocketbook Factory in Hudson, New York. We love how they mixed some of Nina’s Thai traditions with lots of vintage elements and think this will help inspire other couples looking to do the same. :)
Let’s hear a bit more from the couple about why they picked The Pocketbook Factory…
We wanted a place where we could spend the entire day there from getting ready to ceremony to reception, and not have to worry about traveling from one location to another. And we wanted a place where everything could be indoors (but still had great light) because I didn’t want to worry about the weather. Lastly, we wanted a venue that felt like “us.” We both love places with a history or a story and when we saw the Pocketbook Factory we knew that was going to be our venue. It’s a former Military pocketbook factory that’s still being restored, we were only the second couple to have our wedding there. Once we had our venue, we knew we wanted to keep the “vintage” look, using all of the furniture available at the venue, collected by the owner, Eleanor Ambos, who’s an antiques dealer. We joked that we made people travel upstate from New York City to an area that has great outdoor landscapes and we were cooping them up all day inside a factory. It was essentially an “Upstate Brooklyn Wedding.”
Big thanks to Christina Lilly Photography for the gorgeous photos!
From Nina, Since we couldn’t have our wedding in my home country of Thailand, it was important to us that we were able to share some Thai wedding traditions and mix it into the decor. We played Thai classical music while people were being seated during the ceremony, and before our vows we had the Thai Water Ceremony, which is where guests take turns pouring holy water onto our hands to give us their blessing and well wishes. Our mothers placed the “Circle of Luck” (white thread linking together two circles, which was blessed by monks earlier) on our heads, which represents that from now on our destiny is bonded while our individual identities are maintained. Three white dots were painted on our foreheads by the groom’s father to represent the Triple Gem in Buddhism. We wrote our table numbers in Thai and traditional numbers and attached them to little “Tuk Tuk” (Thai taxis) figurines. We used placemats and place cards made of mango paper bought in Thailand, along with little Thai wooden figurines that all remind me of home. The flowers, King Protea, are actually native to South Africa, but they look so much like a lotus float used in a Thai holiday; I fell in love with them and used them in the bouquets and wedding aisle. My flower crown was made of “blushing bride” flowers which is is in the protea flower family.
We also wanted to include as much of our personalities and who we are as a couple into the day. Our first date was a bike ride, and it’s something we enjoy doing together, and he proposed during a bike ride, so we used my bike to hold the wedding programs and had a few bike details on the RSVP, tattoos, groom’s tie, and sign in book. When we first met, Charlie’s conversation starter to me was, “Drinking the hard stuff?” as I was making myself a mixed drink so our 2 wedding cocktails were called “Drink the Hard Stuff?” (Maple Manhattans) and “Drinking the Sweet Stuff” (Pomegranate Sweet Tea Vodka). Charlie has a ridiculous pumpkin tattoo with the number 13 on it (a $13 tattoo he got on Friday the 13th) that everyone teases him about, so our wedding favors were temporary tattoos of a pumpkin with our wedding date in it, taped to a card that read, “I went to Charlie and Nina’s wedding and all I got was a stupid tattoo.” Lastly we’re both known party animals that love to dance, so ultimately we just wanted everyone to party hard and have a good time, and not worry so much about fancy five course meals and formalities.
Processional: Bridal Party: I and Love and You – Avett Brothers; Bride: Your Hand In Mine (w/ Strings) – Explosions in the Sky
Recessional: Into You – Fabolous
First Dance: Detlef Schrempf – Band of Horses
From Nina: I don't know how to choose! Seeing Charlie for the first time was really special. We were trying to hold back our tears but while our photographer was taking my portraits I would look over at him and his eyes were filled with tears. It was such a sweet and loving look and it really hit me that we're really doing this.
The water ceremony was so amazing because it was essentially a receiving line where people were supposed to come by and give us their blessings and well wishes but the range of things people said was so entertaining from "Um, I don't know what to say" to sweet and heartfelt things to ridiculously hilarious nonsense. We were cracking up the entire time.
My walk to the aisle was a very long walk from one side of the factory to the other, so it was comically dramatic. It left me so much time to go through so many emotions from nervous to excited. And the song I walked down to was something Charlie chose because it felt "perfect" to him. It was so beautiful I thought my heart would explode.
From Charlie: It's a toss up between seeing Nina come down the aisle to the Explosions In the Sky song or when we went down the aisle together for the recessional but the Fabolous song wasn't playing (we forgot to wait for the music) so Nina had us run back around all the chairs and go down the aisle again to the song.
This cake by Cafe Le Perche looks oh-so-yummy!
Hire a wedding planner! Our friend who's a planner was going to help out but at the last minute we felt like we had everything under control and told her to just enjoy being a guest. (Perhaps our only regret of the day). There are so many moving parts in a wedding, and things can fall through the cracks (like a vendor getting lost, a delivery not showing up), and it's just incredibly helpful to have a contact person who's in charge of all of that. It will be worth your money to not have to spend your wedding day on the phone problem solving.
photography: Christina Lilly Photography // venue name: The Pocketbook Factory // florals: Karma Flowers // wedding dress: Blush by Jim Hjlem // bride's shoes: Belle by Badgley Mischka // bridesmaid dresses: Free People // hair stylist: Stacy from Styles on B // makeup artist: Elizabeth Black Makeup // groom attire: J. Crew Ludlow Suit // videography: Off BEET Productions // paper goods: designed by Bride // calligraphy: Mary Kate Moon // catering: The Pocketbook Factory // cake: Cafe Le Perche // music: DJ Mr. Niceness // officiant: Groom's Aunt // flower crown: Karma Flowers // bride's earrings: Anthropologie // groom's tie and pocket square: The Tie Bar // groom's robot tie clip: Cosmic Firefly