We got to know the awesome Eliza Gwendalyn during our NYC goop MRKT—she lent her calligraphy talents to our pop-up, the party invitations, and place settings. She runs a full-service design house, and her hand-lettering work is absolutely stunning, whether it’s a wedding invitation, party favor, or the homepage of your website.
Edward Keating Photography
Edward Keating comes from the world of serious photojournalism—he was a staff photographer at the New York Times for more than a decade, has been nominated for the Pulitzer nearly a dozen times, and won for his coverage of 9/11. But he’s also long had a tie to wedding photography: He co-created the NYT column, “Vows,” and his own wedding photos (twice nominated for Pulitzers) are bar none.
Karen Hill Photography
Hill’s sensibility is romantic and classic—she actually prefers traditional film over digital. She earned her photo chops at the Pratt Institute, where she graduated with a BFA, and at the Yale School of Art, where she got her MFA. Her husband—who studied photography at UPenn and who has worked as an editorial, advertising, and fine art photographer—now works alongside Hill in the studio, focused primarily on weddings in the greater NYC area.
Gabrielle Plucknette Photography
Gabrielle Plucknette started out in the photo departments of The New York Times Magazine and New York Magazine before heading off on her own as a freelance photographer. In addition to weddings, Plucknette also does brilliant lifestyle shots that run the gamut from local parades to food photography and coastal portraits. Plucknette is very good with lighting, for one, which makes her photos really stand out.
Amber Gress Photography
California native Amber Gress grew up on an organic vegetable farm before she fell in love with the dark room. She’s now Brooklyn-based (and shoots digital), but travels. Her style is fresh and sophisticated; most of her photos—from family portraits to engagement series and bride close-ups day-of—have a real editorial feel. Her associate photographer, Shannon, is also great. And they are expanding into (non-cheesy) videography, too.
A Guy + A Girl Photography NYC
The spirited duo behind A Guy + A Girl, Michael Kelley and Lauren Saldutti, are masters at capturing shots that feel full of life. Their portfolio is playful in the best way, and every wedding they shoot looks more fun than the last. Typically, Michael and Lauren shoot separately (with a second photographer), but you can book them together. They’re fully bi-coastal, with posts in both NYC and LA.
Parties don’t always lend themselves to healthy meals. The idea behind this food service is that simple, good food can be special-event-worthy. Woldy’s will work with you to come up with a menu (whether it’s breakfast, brunch, lunch, or dinner) that is seasonal and local, without skimping on taste. Sample dishes include: chia seed breakfast bowls decorated with shaved coconut and edible flowers; roasted Brussels sprouts with white beans and almonds, served with blood orange vinaigrette; Vietnamese-inspired meatballs with sriracha aioli; and (flourless) chocolate cake.
Peter Callahan has been in the catering business since 1985 and has long since created a name for himself with his popular bite-sized comfort foods. The majority of the events PCC caters are around NYC, but you can book them to come to you elsewhere in the States (and even abroad). Callahan’s crew is accustomed to working in a variety of locations, including unconventional event spaces that may not come equipped with any sort of kitchen access.
Pinch Food Design
Seriously not your average catering crew, Pinch brings a playful, almost theatrical vibe to party food presentation. It’s run by chef Bob Spiegel and designer TJ Girard who collaborate in equal parts: With Pinch, it’s as much about the experience as it is the taste. Picture chef’s tables with quick prep demos, food stations that literally move, clever dishes that rest atop wine glasses, custom-designed utensils, floating pizza slices, and so, so much more.
UrbanStems is an awesomely convenient on-demand flower delivery service that began in D.C. and has since expanded to NYC. Their bouquets, which begin at $35, are very well priced, and they make the whole thing—even last minute orders—a cinch, getting all the details, like handwritten notes, right. Once your bouquet is delivered, they'll send you a photo confirmation, so you're not left wondering about if and when. Equally impressive: UrbanStems has an eco-conscious slant and works with the international nonprofit, Rainforest Alliance, and Veriflora—an agricultural sustainability certification and eco-labeling program—to source their blooms.