High School sweethearts, Ashley and Joshua, first met during a free-period in the cafeteria while sitting among mutual friends. As time went by they began to strike up conversations on their own, slowly getting to know each other, in their words, "our free periods turned to hanging out on the weekends with friends, to driving lessons in Joshua’s Suzuki, to texting, and before you knew it phone calls that would last for hours." Adorably, with the passing of a note, their relationship was made official, remaining inseparable ever since...
Read all about Ashley and Joshua's love story, sweet proposal, and experiences in their charming classic wedding in Connecticut - captured by MunaLuchi Coterie member TimeFrozen Photography.
Bride & Groom: Ashley & Joshua
Occupations: Senior Manager / Senior Market Analyst
Wedding date: June 8, 2018
Wedding location: Aria Banquets, Prospect, CT
Tell us how you met. High school sweethearts in today’s day and age? The year was 2007, and we were sharing the same free period in the cafeteria. We didn’t know each other, but luckily we had some mutual friends, so we sat at the same table. After a few weeks, we got to talking on our own and our free periods turned to hanging out on the weekends with friends, to driving lessons in Joshua’s Suzuki, to texting, and before you knew it phone calls that would last for hours. We spent every day talking, and every weekend hanging out, when it was finally made official on April 9, 2007 back in the cafeteria with a note written on a napkin “Will you go out with me?” and a "yes" box or a "no" box... It was quickly followed by our first official date at Applebee’s – going out to eat was a big deal when you’re making $6/hour. We’d like to think history was made that day in April, because it was the start of something we had no idea we were in store for...
Tell us about the proposal.So it’s 2015 and we’d spend the next 2 and half years in NYC. We fell in love with the city, even with the 300 sq. ft. box we lived in for 13 months…we loved it all and spent every possible moment walking as many streets as we could, dancing in our favorite clubs in the Meatpacking district, exploring and taking everything in…words can’t describe how much we loved it. When we moved to Brooklyn, we found a place that felt like home. New York was another defining moment in how we grew together because we only had each other – we didn’t know anyone or have any family in the city, so it was up to us to make this new place feel like home. Once again, we found people in new jobs and organizations that New York just wouldn’t have been the same without... It was one day in those 2 and a half years, May 13, 2016 to be exact, that the next defining moment in our story took place. We’re back at Glastonbury High School, in front of one of our old lockers were the words “Will you marry me?” on a card with a "yes" box and a "no" box (we’ve come a long way since napkins), and a “YES!” all happened in one amazing moment. We’ve been together for 9 years at this point, and while we both knew this was coming, it still felt surreal...
First look:Without a doubt, the First Look was the most anticipated moment of our wedding day. This is probably because we almost weren’t sure it was going to happen after sudden issues getting ready for the wedding caused the bride to race to the venue! But thanks to our amazing wedding photographer, turned life-saver that day, we made it to the venue with just enough time for a First Look. At the time, we both didn’t realize how much we needed that First Look, to just have a moment for us before we let everyone else in. After rushing to get my dress on and make all the final touches, the walk to get to the groom felt like it took forever. I remember every step, every stop along the way, every corner turned to finally tap him on the shoulder. And when we both turned to each other we just burst into tears. All the stress went away in that second, the anxious feelings, the worries we had all day were put to rest and we just let ourselves have a moment. If you’re debating whether to do a First Look, we definitely recommend it!
What was wedding shopping like for you (Bride)? Ashley: "I didn’t know what to expect going wedding dress shopping for the first time and I kept thinking it was going to be like the shows you watch where the dress everybody thinks they want, looks the worst on them. But when I arrived at Kleinfeld, my consultant matched my exact look to perfection. I wanted something form-fitting through the body that opened up at the bottom with a long train. I love bling so that was a must for my dress! I also knew I wanted a different type of neckline, not sweetheart, but a halter-style that was elegant and still striking. When I arrived at Kleinfeld, the third dress I tried on was exactly everything I wanted. A Dennis Basso dress covered in bling, form-fitting mermaid style with a beaded halter neckline and to top it off a wide-open back. To complete the look, we matched a veil that was long enough to pass the length of my train. The most important detail from my look are my earrings, they are the only piece of jewelry, other than my rings, that I wore on my wedding day and they are the earrings my mom wore 30 years ago on her wedding day. She didn’t know I was planning to wear them, or the fact that I’ve had them saved in a tin box in my closet since I was 9, but they were the perfect and only accessory I really wanted to wear that day. I thought I was going to want to wear a second outfit at my wedding, but I couldn’t be happier that I stayed in my dress all night long!"
What was wedding shopping like for you (Groom)? Joshua: "I went with a custom made suit that I wore for both the ceremony and reception. I wanted something a little different than an all-black tux, so I had a white jacket with black lapels and a traditional white shirt on top with black pants – the cool thing about the custom made process is that everything down to the angle of the pockets, and the number of buttons are all to your taste. I was also able to get the inside embroidered with our initials and wedding date. Following the ceremony, I switched from the white shirt to another custom-fitted navy blue designed shirt. I also changed my shoes to a pair of Steve Madden loafers with a snake design – yes I had more outfit changes than my wife that night, and everyone took notice! But the most important part of my look for the day was one particular accessory – my grandfather’s ring. I had just had it restored and sized a few weeks before the wedding and was looking forward to wearing it on our wedding day. June 8th came and I realized that I had forgotten my ring and had to ask a friend to bring it up with him on his way to the wedding. My friend had delivered it to me moments before the ceremony and it felt like my grandfather was there that day."
Describe your wedding decor. Did you have a theme? We didn’t have a specific theme, but we used our color scheme of navy blue and gold to really set the stage for an evening affair that was classy, had a bit of glam, but when the lights turned down it was beyond a celebration. One tradition in our family is a bridal party dance at weddings, and although we pulled it together at the last minute, our bridal party was amazing and pulled off an incredible two-part dance to uphold tradition. I can't talk about wedding décor without recognizing my mom, the one and only Yvette Minnifield. Her attention to detail with color schemes, accessories, accents, and piecing it all together took the vision for our wedding beyond next level. She is nothing short of AMAZING and created the entire look of the night! We kept our ceremony décor simple by lightly draping the gazebo we would be married under and lining the chairs with bouquets of flowers up the center aisle... Picking up on the navy blue and gold color scheme in the reception area, we brought in navy blue table clothes with gold runners on every table, matching colored petals, and our mini-champagne giveaways... We wanted to keep our flowers on the simpler side – something that stood tall, and could stand on its own without a lot of other flowers and fillers. We went with Calla Lily centerpieces for the reception tables. For the bridal party flowers – myself along with the bridesmaids carried cascading orchid bouquets. We placed an orchid on the groomsmen for their boutonnieres, along with corsages for our mothers and grandmothers..
What is your best memory from your wedding? If we had to choose, the vows are definitely at the top of the list! We decided to write our own vows for our ceremony, and maybe it’s because it’s the one piece of the wedding that we didn’t plan together or discuss in specific detail, but they took us by surprise as we stood up there listening to each other. It’s funny because we said so many of the same things, touched on similar memories that stood out to the both of us, but the words and emotions we each brought were something that we weren’t prepared for, we just didn’t expect it... Our first dance in the dancing cloud brought by our entertainment team was amazing and we literally felt like we were floating our way through that song. One moment we were entering the floor and dancing, and then the “cloud” started surrounding us and everyone in the room disappeared for what may’ve only been a second, but felt like minutes...
What is the best wedding advice you can give to engaged couples? Don’t. Sweat. The. Small. Stuff! We know this is what everyone says and it’s easier said than done, but remember that this is about the two of you and nothing else matters! Another piece of advice that was shared with us just before our wedding day, is to remember to spend as much time with each other during your wedding as possible. It seems silly to say, but you get pulled in so many different directions, the day flies by and it’s easy for you both to get separated frequently throughout the night. Stick together, dance together, and keep finding each other throughout your day!
Photography: TimeFrozen Photography
Band / DJ /Photobooth: RICO Entertainment
Officiant: Louis Hawkins
Bridal Gown & Veil: Dennis Basso
Bridal Salon: Kleinfeld Bridal
Cake/Desserts: Modern Pastry Shop
Wedding Venue / Lighting Design / Caterer: Aria Banquets
Wedding Invitation: All That Glitters Invitations
Florals: Terri Krisavage Wedding & Event Florals
Hair/Make-Up Artist: Tokyo Glam Squad
Videographer: Thijs Stoop
Wedding rings designers: Lux Bond & Green
Ring Shop: Baribault Jewlers
Bride's Shoes: Badgely Mischka
Bridesmaids: David's Bridal
Groom's Suit: JT Ghamo the Tuxedo Place
Groom's Wedding Accessories: 9Tailors