Even with invitation misprints and late arrivals, nothing could keep this laidback couple and their intimate, Providence-inspired wedding down.
How did you two meet?
Erik: I had a show; my band was playing the Cape and it was before we lived here…
Emily: I was living in East Falmouth… I had just graduated from Florida State and my brother was stationed at the Coast Guard up there and I was like, “I’ll just come up and stay with you after I graduate,” because I had nothing else to do. Then he left and I stayed. One day, I heard this band on NPR, which turned out to be Erik’s band, Parsonsfield, and I heard that they were going to be at this Irish pub that I used to frequent called O’Shea’s Olde Inne. It was the middle of February and none of my friends could go, but I really wanted to see this band and so I was like, “Screw it, I’m going by myself!” I showed up and they played an awesome set and then I decided to wait at the bar because there was a long line for coat check. Erik rolled up next to me and I recognized him so I said, “Hey, great show, let me buy you a beer.”
Erik: And the rest is history!
Emily: We talked the rest of the night and then we met up in Providence like a week later. He lived in eastern Connecticut at the time, so the city was a pretty central location for dates. I moved to Providence about a month later because I got a job at Whole Foods, and then three months after that he moved in with me. He was nervous about that at first, but I was like, “Honestly, you’re going to be gone half the time at shows — it’s gonna be fine!”
Kait: That’s such a movie cliche, meeting the guy from the band…
Emily: Right! I was like, “Who am I?” I would never be that forward with a guy normally — it was so unlike me. But, you know, when you go out by yourself and you don’t have the safety blanket of your friends…
Kait: Yeah, if they had been there you might not have talked to him…
Emily: Exactly! It never would have happened.
How did you get engaged?
Erik: Pretty casually. I had the ring probably for like a month or so. I wasn’t waiting for the perfect time really, but just a nice moment. So I did it at the apartment one night.
Emily: To preface that, he had just gotten home from a three-week tour.
Erik: I called her dad the day before; I was in the airport in Chicago and I was like, “Yeah, I’m gonna do it!” He was pretty happy about it, so luckily that went well… Honestly, that was actually harder than proposing.
Emily: That night, I had just gotten back from class and it was around 10 p.m. I was on my phone playing solitaire, ready to go to bed, and he starts pacing around the room. I was like, “Why are you pacing? Stop it.” He was obviously nervous.
Erik: I had the ring in my sock drawer and I was like, “Oh God, I guess I’m gonna get it.” And Emily was like, “What are you doing over there?” So, I said, “Ahhh, nothing like a good pair of socks.” Just making small talk. I grabbed the box, closed the drawer, got onto the bed and slid my arm under her pillow to put the ring box there. So then we were just sitting in bed and the ring is under the pillow and I was like, “Alright, what do I do next?” I started peeking under the pillow and said, “Oh, there’s something down here!” Emily started looking under the pillow and I shined the light from my phone right on it and it was like bling! So I grabbed it and I’m pretty sure I just rolled off the bed and got down on to one knee next to the bed.
Emily: I don’t remember what he said, it’s all a blur. But our cat, Kaz, was on the edge of the bed and it was a perfect family moment.
Kait: Did you expect it at all?
Emily: Funny thing is, I hadn’t. I mean, we had talked about it, obviously, but I had looked through his drawers a week before and didn’t find anything!
What made you go with Kelly for your photographer?
Emily: I found her through Instagram actually — she used to shoot a lot for Free People. She actually posted a shot of the shoes I ended up wearing at the wedding; they had this huge sale and they were half off, only 40 bucks, so I had to get them. But at the same time I was going through her feed and thinking, “Oh my God, who is this photographer!?” So I emailed her and I was like, “Heeyyyy :).”
Erik: But it wasn’t like she was just a product shooter — she does a ton of weddings, too.
Emily: Yeah, she was an assistant photographer for Molly Lo Photography, but then Molly encouraged her to start her own business, too. Kelly is great. We met with her for the first time at Seven Stars on Hope Street and we hit it off right away. She asked what we wanted for photos and eventually we figured out we wanted casual, intimate and candid. That was the theme, really, and she nailed it.
Erik: Plus, she drove us around on the day of. That was the funny part: the logistics of the day were kind of crazy. Like everything was in Providence and relatively close, but still we weren’t going to walk everywhere, so how do we get from point A to point B?
Emily: I’m from Florida and he’s from Pennsylvania, so all of our family members were flying in and we let them use our cars to get around. But then we were like, “Okay, now what do we do?”
Erik: And then Kelly was just like, “Oh, I’ll drive you.”
Emily: She was awesome… Just up for whatever we wanted
Erik: We even gave her a couple of our polaroid cameras that day, too, so we had pictures popping out throughout the day.
Kait: Like the ones on the doughnuts?
Erik: She also had a disposable camera that she gave to my friends’ three-year-old, so there’s this one great roll of film where everything is from his perspective, like knee level.… He got some pretty funny pics—it was such a cool idea.
Emily, I loved your dress! Where did you get it from?
Emily: Etsy! A woman in, I think, Bulgaria had a bunch of dresses on there, but they were all long. Originally, we had wanted to do a city hall thing so I asked if she could do the dress in a short version. She was so nice to work with… We just conversed through Etsy and she had me send over my measurements. She actually made me triple check I had the right ones before she started making the dress. Then, it came in the mail a month later and it was perfect. I feel like I could maybe even wear it again!
I also really liked your invitations…
Erik: Want to hear something funny? We totally screwed the times up. The ceremony on one page said 11:30 a.m., and then on the next page it said noon.
Kait: Oh no.
Erik: Oh yes. In the same piece of mail! So everyone was just like, “Uhhh, I don’t know what time to show up…”
Emily: I was like, “Oh my god, I cannot believe I did that!” But honestly, we had such a small guest list, less than fifty people, so we just texted everyone and told them the right time. No big deal. My best friend got married in July and she was freaking out about her invitations having some kind of rubbing on them…
Erik: Oh yeah, it was the smallest thing! Like a piece of ink had smeared in one spot.
Emily: I was like, “Are you kidding? We literally put the wrong time on ours. You’re fine.” She was like, “I needed that, thank you.”
Erik: Another funny thing was our master of ceremony, the officiant judge, was late.
Kait: …Because of the invitation?
Erik: Hah! No, no, no… She knew. We double checked the time with her multiple times over the phone.
Emily: We called her at 11 a.m. first of all… We’re at the park, it’s kind of chilly out and we’re waiting, but she was like, “Yep, I’ll be there in a couple minutes.” 11:30 rolls around and she’s no where to be seen.
Erik: It was supposed to start at 11:30 and she got there at 11:45.
Emily: While we were waiting his best friend was like, “It’s fine, I’ll just get ordained online quick and do it.” At that point I kind of wanted him to do it…
Erik: He was ready to go, but we decided to give her five minutes and then we saw her car pull in and we were like “Alright! Let’s do this.” It all worked out.
So what made you opt for a smaller wedding?
Emily: We originally went to city hall because we wanted to do it there but they don’t do weddings on Mondays, only on Tuesdays and Thursdays.
Erik: Should we say why it had to be a Monday? ‘Cause it is a weird day for a wedding, right?
Emily: Oh, yeah. Well, I’m in nursing school, and we had a week off that Monday, May 1st through Friday, the 5th. It was like our summer break because we go through school year round. So we thought, “Okay, let’s just get married on a Monday and then go on our honeymoon right after.” We had to be back by that Friday because Erik had a show, so it had to be Monday if we wanted to fit everything in.
Erik: So, we found out that we couldn’t really have a court house thing, which is what we started out wanting to do with just a couple of witnesses, and then we were like, “Fine, let’s also invite this person and that person.” But then once you start inviting a few people it becomes, “Oh, because we invited them we also have to invite them.” It’s either you invite two people or fifty people, there’s no in between. But the reason we wanted a small wedding from the start was because of budget; we wanted to keep it cheap.
Emily: And I never really wanted a huge wedding. If we hadn’t done this, we would have gotten married in my parents’ backyard in Florida. But we didn’t want to wait and I thought this was way more ‘us’ than some big wedding.
Erik: It was very low-key; no one was stressed out.
Emily: My parents were like “Do whatever you want.” My mom just wanted me to let my dad walk me down the aisle — that was her one thing.
Erik: We formed an aisle with people in the grass.
Emily: My best friend was kind of like the Maid of Honor, and she coordinated everyone at the ceremony without us even asking her to. We hadn’t even thought about it. We only planned the location, not where everyone would stand. My best friend was like, “Wait, what?” and then was like, “Alright, you people stand right here, you people stand over here…”
Erik: Good thing we had her… Honestly, I had only been to two weddings before mine, so I didn’t really know what to expect!
What drew you to Prospect Park? Did you need a permit to have your ceremony there?
Erik: Yes, you need a permit for twenty-five people or more. It’s $100 if you’re residents or $200 for out-of-state. We live right down the street so it made sense, but we also considered India Point Park and Water Street…
Emily: But Prospect had the skyline and was a little more private — no one was there at 11 on a Monday morning. We were the only ones, it was perfect.
Tell me about some of your details — I saw you guys had a lot of Providence vendors!
Erik: Well, for one, we went with PVDonuts because they’re bomb, but also because we’re not cake people.
Emily: We aren’t very traditional people either. We were just into doing what we wanted. Like we just had a Spotify playlist for our reception music and din’t do a first dance because that’s not really us.
Erik: We just knew that we wanted to incorporate a lot of local things because we love this city; it’s where our story really began.
Emily: Plus, most people at the wedding were not from this area so they got a taste of Providence — not just PVDonuts but also Hot Club for cocktail hour, Milk Money for the reception, the Malted Barley for our rehearsal dinner, etc.
What were your favorite moments from that day?
Erik: Probably the ceremony itself.
Emily: Yeah, you were getting super emotional. Me, I was getting a bit angry [because of the officiant debacle] so I couldn’t get really emotional. Plus, I didn’t want to cry, you know.
Erik: Receptions are really fun, but also overwhelming because you’re walking around and talking to all of your guests and you want to make sure that you get to everyone. It’s really busy!
Emily: You know what I really liked? After everything, we went back to the Dean [Erik and Emily’s hotel for the night] and went to Faust [R.I.P] and had a chill dinner with a few friends and his aunt and uncle. It was a nice recap of the night. Then we went to Disney for our honeymoon Tuesday through Friday, flew back into Providence on Friday, and then we had to be up in Burlington, Vermont that night for a show.
Erik: We barely made it. It was insane but great — totally worth it.
Any advice you’d like to give to recently engaged couples?
Erik: I would say just relax because, in the end, it’s just a day. That was like our slogan: “It’s just one day out of whole lifetime. One day.” Also, our total budget was so small yet we did so much with it. There’s no reason to spend a lot of money if it’s going to really set you back.
Emily: You can still do a cool local thing…
Kait: And still end up in a wedding magazine.
Erik: Exactly! That’s awesome
Kait: Would you also tell them to roll with the punches?
Erik: Oh, definitely. So many little things went wrong, but it didn’t matter at all. We put the wrong time on our invitations and it didn’t matter. the officiant was late and it didn’t matter. Our card got declined at the reception and it didn’t matter. Emily’s brother forgot the iPad with our Spotify playlist and it didn’t matter. So don’t stress…
Emily: Yeah, it’s all going to work out, and in the end, you’ll be married. That’s all that matters.
Photography: Kelly Louise Photography // Ceremony: Prospect Terrace Park // Cocktail Hour: Hot Club // Reception and Catering: Milk Money // Hair and Makeup: DIY // Bride’s Dress: Anaoiss on Etsy // Bride’s Shoes: Free People // Groom’s Suit: H&M // Flowers: Whole Foods // Doughnuts: PVDonuts // Record Guestbooks: DIY