The One with the Rice | Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church & Crystal Tea Room | Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Chrisoula & LG’s Wedding Day Highlights

Catholic boy meets Greek girl. They fall in love. What’s next? A big fat Greek wedding!

On his wedding day LG was the epitome of cool. We arrive to LG’s house to find him relaxing on the couch watching his favorite movie, “The Godfather”. Appropriately enough, we arrived during the wedding scene in the beginning of the film setting the mood for the day. As his groomsmen started to arrive LG headed into the bedroom to put on his suit provided by Sagets Formal Wear. Each piece of this outfit had sentimental meaning. From the watch he wore to his cuff links, every item reminded him of people he loved and who he was. After getting dressed he joined his guys in the living room for a quick drink before heading outside for photos. Crossing the street to a gorgeous park, LG and his guys had a few more drinks and reminisced about days gone by. After a few pictures everyone headed back inside to have some lunch before heading off to the church.

Upon arriving to the bride’s getting ready location, we found it was relatively quiet as Chrisoula’s parents and eight bridesmaids were the only ones there getting ready for the day (so far). After photographing her details (Badgley Mischka shoes, Cozzi Jewelers rings, and jewelry in hints of golds and silvers), we photographed her impressive Watters bridal gown from Kleinfeld.  The dress had some special alterations including a patch sewn on the inside of her gown in honor of the day. Once we finished detail photography, the house started to slowly fill with flower girls, excited children, family, and other friendly faces that stopped by the home prior to the ceremony.  Each of them entered and bestowed their best wishes upon the family.

Chrisoula ascended the stairs after Brantley finished her bridal hair (the bride did her own make-up on her wedding day…. #superimpressed) into the family room for help getting into her gown and being adorned with her wedding details. Her bridesmaids and mother helped the most, but the room was filled with excited friends and family giving choruses of helpful tips, tricks, and hearty congratulations as the excitement built in the room. After the bride donned her veil from Kleinfeld, she was ready to be escorted by her sister to the Rolls Royce from Ali Baba Limo for her grand entrance to the ceremony.

The ceremony at Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church was brimming with tradition. Chrisoula was escorted down the aisle by her father over a thickly laid pathway of rose petals. My second favorite moment was when the bride and groom experienced their crowning. The Stefana was swapped on their heads three times by the godfather of their choice to seal their union. My first favorite moment was watching the four flower girls sit on the alter trying to stealthily tell secrets while the 90 minute ceremony occurred.

Did I mention they exited Demetrios Greek Orthodox Church to a light rain of rice? Maybe I should put it a different way – the newlyweds were PELTED with rice as they exited their church and headed to their Rolls Royce. LG and Chrisoula hid under her veil as the exited, but it didn’t prevent guests from cleverly getting rice to fall over the newlyweds in a joyous rain of happiness and blessings towards their new life together.

We took the newlyweds through a whirlwind of portraits at Philadelphia City Hall when we arrived to the Crystal Tea Room at the Wanamaker Building. The overcast skies seemed to keep the tourists away from the center of City Hall and we created some fun portraits for the newlyweds. One of my favorites is Chrisoula’s veil flowing behind her as LG plants a newlywed kiss on her lips.

Though the morning spent with Chrisoula, LG, and their guests was quite full of Greek traditional, we knew the reception at Finley Catering‘s Crystal Tea Room was going to be off the hook when we walked in and saw the magnificent decor of the room. DJ John and his staff was perched high on a stage above the white dance floor and a smoke machine blasted cool white mist into the ballroom to create a mysterious fun party atmosphere. Carl Alan Florist knocked it out of the park with delicate orchid center pieces balanced perfectly in tall vases on each table. The Termini Brothers Bakery cake towered in the corner of the ballroom adorned with sugar flowers and gold ribbon. Say Cheese Photo Booth Rentals featured a fun inflatable booth for guests to snap a quick selfie in.

The bridesmaids sparkled on the dance floor in their head-to-toe gold Sorella Vita matte sequin gowns from Lizelle’s Bridal.   Once the party started there was no going back.  With toasts from family members, Greek dancing, and money being thrown at the couple, the party kept reaching new levels.  With every new song and glass of wine the crowd filled the room with more and more energy.  If you have never experienced a Greek wedding, put it on your “bucket list” for it is an occasion you will never forget..

Thank You for inviting us to have fun at your beautiful center city Philadelphia Greek wedding! #GESUALiDO

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