A Surprise Wedding

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Erin and Blake are one of a kind, and became two of my first friends when I moved to Pittsburgh five years ago. They are effortlessly cool, have an ‘eye’ for style (both Erin and Blake help run the show at Pittsburgh’s popular eyewear shop Eyetique, and (borrowing from Erin’s favorite artist, Beyonce) completely Crazy in Love.

When they asked me in December 2018 to plan their engagement party turned surprise wedding, I reacted like many of their guests did on February 17, 2018: Excited, impressed, and honored to be included. If any couple could pull this off, it would be Erin and Blake.

As the RSVP’s for their ‘Engagement Party’ flooded my inbox, I got to work on the logistics with a rockstar lineup of vendors. Andrew Stackiewicz, owner of The Foundry Table & Tap, not only delivered on a fantastic cocktail-style reception, he helped transform their dining room into an intimate ceremony site.

Next, Carmel Vandale and team of Mt. Lebanon Floral brought the romance with candles, lush arrangements, and a stunning floral arch.

Not only was the wedding ceremony a surprise, but Blake and I got in a few extra surprises planned for Erin, including an ice luge, custom wedding bands, and converting The Foundry’s kitchen office into a bridal suite for Erin to change from her party dress into her wedding gown.

DJ David Pugliano curated a mix of soft house music, and owned the surprise moment by playing “Let’s Get Married” after Erin’s brother revealed the big plot twist. Family friends also played big roles in their day: Brad Childs officiated the ceremony, and there wasn’t a dry eye in the house as Erin and Blake ‘exchanged the bling.’ Randy Adams created an absolute dream of a Funfetti cake, and Erin’s grandparents got a special shout out during her personalized vows, “My grandpa always told me to marry your best friend.”

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Erin and Blake are two of the many reasons why I love this city, and I was so grateful to be part of the day, which you can relive through their amazing wedding video below—special shoutout to my sister, Hannah, for capturing their day on video!

Congratulations Mr. and Mrs. Ellison!