The couple said “I do” Sept. 23, 2017.
By Emma Way
Occupations: Alicia is in sales at a technology company and Tommy is a financial analyst.
Wedding date: Sept. 23, 2017
Number of attendees: 210
How they met: Alicia first noticed Tommy in class during their senior year at Saint Joseph’s University in Philadelphia and developed a crush. The two officially met in a bar through a mutual friend, who encouraged Tommy to buy the next round. Six years later, Alicia still giggles like she has a secret crush.
The engagement: As their relationship grew, Tommy became a welcomed member of Alicia’s family, and was invited on vacation to Australia—a trip to celebrate her brother’s graduation from college. It was Christmas Eve on the beach, by their hotel on Hamilton Island, when Tommy proposed, just the two of them (and a photographer). Alicia’s mom and brother knew about the proposal, but for the rest of her family (and for Alicia, herself), it was a total surprise.
The planning process: The couple originally considered a beach wedding, but when they looked at the Hotel du Pont, they fell in love with the idea of getting married in a place that’s so significant to Alicia’s family: her grandparents were married there 50 years ago. Considering her family’s legacy at the venue, the pair decided to keep the wedding very classic and elegant. “I feel like that just really embodies us,” Alicia adds.
Some special touches: Alicia lost her dad to cancer while she was in high school, so in his memory the two donated to the Helen S. Graham Cancer Center in lieu of wedding favors. Her brother, Brandon stepped in during the father-daughter dance, another really special moment for Alicia.
Favorite details: So many favorites, they both say. Everything from her ’maids matching monogrammed pajamas to the rosary wrapped around her bouquet was purposefully planned, and all done without a formal wedding planner. They had a lot of help from Alicia’s mom, though. Since they both love to travel, they added details in decor to represent that—postcards for people to sign, an old-school globe as a guestbook and an array of vintage suitcases. Then, they didn’t want the party to stop at the reception, so they hosted a Philadelphia-themed after-party, complete with cheesesteaks and soft pretzels.
Unexpected part of the wedding day: Just two days before saying ‘I do,’ their officiant had an emergency and could no longer preside over their big day. They had spent a year working with this priest, but had to quickly adjust. “The first time I saw our [new] officiant was when I was walking down the aisle,” Alicia says. She can laugh about it now. Despite this being the priest’s first wedding in the U.S. after moving from India, everything went smoothly.
Piece of advice: Both Alicia and Tommy agree; just relax and have fun. “It’s all going to work out. It’s going to be perfect no matter what,” she says.
CEREMONY AND RECEPTION: Sacred Heart Oratory, sacredheartoratory.org and Hotel du Pont, hoteldupont.com
DRESS: Long, strapless lace gown by Matthew Christopher from The Wedding Shoppe, wedding-shoppe.com
PHOTOGRAPHY: Kelli Wilke Photography, kelliwilke.com
BEAUTY: Pagave Salon and Spa, pagave.com
CATERER: Hotel du Pont
CAKE: A simple, five-tier Grand Marnier pound cake from Hotel du Pont
TUXEDOS: Formal Affairs, formalaffairsnewark.com
FLOWERS: Petals Flowers and Fine Gifts, petalsflowersgifts.com
INVITATIONS: Whimsy, whimsygreenville.com
MUSIC: Milan 77, ebetalent.com/services/milan-77
FIRST DANCE: “You Make Me Feel So Young” by Frank Sinatra