• Amy Hammond

Emily & Matt's July 4th Wedding at the Phoenixville Foundry

black and white photo of wedding couple at the Phoenixville Foundry

Sparks were flying on the 4th of July in Phoenixville - FINALLY! After their wedding was postponed for a year due to the pandemic, Emily and Matt went all in on their gorgeous wedding celebration. Their location couldn't have been better. The Phoenixville Foundry is a gorgeous venue, with touches of its industrial history, nestled between French Creek and all of the great shops and restaurants that downtown Phoenixville has to offer. Though it has an industrial past, the Foundry is still very elegant and that's what inspired Emily & Matt's wedding aesthetic.

Emily and I had so much fun designing and planning for this wedding twice. Emily loves paper almost as much as I do, so she was a dream client to work with. She & Matt wanted to host a traditional wedding with a nod to patriotism for their July 4th wedding. We went with slate blue, navy blue, a bit of gold, white florals & greenery for the design palette. Emily fell in love with the tactile experience of thermography (learn more about thermography here). We ended up with two sets of beautiful invitations and loads of fun wedding day details.

We asked Emily to share the story of how she and Matt met and to take us through her wedding day. Beautiful photographs from Grace and Matt of Right Start Photography unless otherwise noted.

How did you & Matt meet?

Matt and I met through the dating app, Bumble. It was fall of 2016 and I had just moved to Phoenixville after getting a new teaching position. Matt recently had moved to Royersford after starting his new job at Lockheed Martin. After a few conversations through the app and then texting, on Black Friday we met in person at Iron Hill in Phoenixville and the rest is history!

Outdoor ceremony photo at Phoenixville Foundry

Tell me a little about the proposal…

Around our 2nd anniversary, Matt made reservations at one of our favorite brunch spots, 19 Bella in Skippack. He told me about these reservations nearly a month in advance and told me to "dress cute," which are both not normal behaviors for Matt. We had a delicious meal but what I remember most is how strange he was acting. He was constantly checking his phone and getting up to go to the bathroom. I later found out it was because the photographer (his brother) was calling. After we finished eating, we went on a short hike nearby at Evansburg State Park which was so beautiful with the fall foliage. When we get to a pretty clearing among the trees, Matt dropped down on one knee and asked me to marry him! It wasn't exactly the biggest surprise of my life but it was certainly a special day and something I'll never forget. Thankfully my now Brother in Law was behind a tree capturing it all on camera too.

Later that afternoon, we went back to where it all began -- Iron Hill in Phoenixville -- where about 60 of our friends and family were waiting to congratulate us. It was the best night celebrating at all the bars on Bridge Street!

What surprised you most about planning your wedding?

I had no idea what to expect as I entered the wedding planning process. What I had envisioned, I learned mostly from the movies and TV. I quickly realized that it is not all as they depict, though. I assumed all elements of wedding planning would be enjoyable, but there is so much time, energy, and money (of course) that goes into planning and so many things to decide. It is easy to get swept up into the details and argue with your fiancé (and Mom on occasion) over things that do not matter that much at the end of the day. It is important to remember that it is not the wedding, but the marriage that is most important.

Covid-19 was the biggest surprise of all I guess. Never would I have thought I'd be faced with the decision of postponing, or keeping my 4th of July 2020 date and having a super small wedding in my parent's backyard. Postponing was hands down the best decision for us! Luckily all of our vendors were available on our new date - July 4 2021 - and for the most part our vendors made it easy for us. We had another year to plan our wedding, save up some more money, and enjoy our engagement! We ended up getting a kitten Lulu, packing up our apartment in Royersford, and buying our first home in Gilbertsville!

(Photos above by Stone Hill Paperie)

What (or who) did you find was your best resource for planning your wedding?

For the most part, for me, I found social media to be the most helpful--specifically Instagram and Pinterest. I stalked our venue, the Phoenixville Foundry, on social media and would screenshot all of the pics taken there of things I liked and wanted to show the vendors. I would follow accounts of a bunch of vendors, not just the ones we were contracted with, for more inspiration. I'm also the kind of girl who has had her wedding Pinterest board since senior year of high school, so I had a whole lot of ideas going in...some that were more realistic than others!

My 6 bridesmaids and Mom were also very present and creative throughout the nearly 3 year process.

Invitation Suite for postponed wedding date

You had so much inspiration in your wedding details that made it so much fun to work on your invitations and wedding day details. W hat was your favorite go-to for wedding inspiration?

Besides Instagram and Pinterest, I was very inspired by many of our friends' wedding invitations and wedding day details. I attended my first wedding just four years ago and since then I've been hanging onto every single thing from weddings -- invitations, envelopes, ceremony programs, personalized cocktail napkins, place cards favors, etc. It's safe to say the shoebox I have been keeping everything is practically full. Our original invitations were a compilation of many of our friends' invitations, along with a few of our own ideas.

Take us back through your wedding day; share your wedding story.

Our wedding story was more than a day - it was a weekend affair! Friday July 2 we hosted Matt's family at our new house in Gilbertsville for a Housewarming BBQ. He had family who flew in from England and all over the USA, so this was the best time for us to show them our new place and also for us all to be together for the first time in a really long time.

Saturday July 3 we had an epic 4 course Rehearsal Dinner at the Kimberton Inn. It was wonderful for Matt's extended family to meet mine, and for the bridal party to be together before the big day. The service was absolutely outstanding and we couldn't have asked for a better time. We can't wait to return soon!

(Photos above by Stone Hill Paperie)

July 4th was the perfect day that we've been waiting so, so long for. Every minute spent planning/stressing, every dollar spent, was all worth it! Weather was beautiful - no rain, not too hot. We got ready separately in our two suites with our bridesmaids and groomsmen at the Hilton Garden Inn Valley Forge/Oaks. The girls enjoyed sipping mimosas in our matching pajamas as we got our hair and makeup done by Cheers2U. The boys ate hoagies while watching the hotdog eating contest on TV. We were driven separately in the party bus (New Rhoads Transportation) to the Foundry where we had our first look shortly after. Before guests arrived, we were able to have pictures taken of the bridal party and immediate family outside of the Foundry. The ceremony was just incredible - working with Rev. David Braneky from Journeys of the Heart, we created a ceremony that was perfect for us...wine box and all. Since we took a lot of pictures before the ceremony, the only ones we had left to take were large extended family photos. And then we were off to Cocktail Hour! My signature drink took the gold I must add! But the real MVP were the appetizers! We did our first dance surrounded by all of our guests circling the dance floor. Then speeches, parent dances, and dinner. The rest of the night we were on the dance floor! It was just what we wanted!

How did your stationery set the tone for your reception or wedding day?

Stationery is the first impression guests have about your wedding day! My parents raised me to know that first impressions are everything! Our hopes for our invitation suite (especially our original one) was that it got guests excited. It's not everyday you receive an invitation with calligraphy envelope, and a wax seal on the back. You open it up and there is a thick band wrapped around the inserts and an envelope liner. Our wedding was a semi-formal affair but we wanted our guests to be impressed and based on the feedback, they were indeed! Many guests say it was the nicest invitation they ever received and they felt like they were being invited to a royal ball.

What was your first dance song?

Our first dance song was L-O-V-E by Nat King Cole. We were very proud of our first dance because we put months in practicing our choreographed dance at Fred Astaire Dance Studio in Collegeville. It was our first time dancing to it with my big dress on (obviously) and also with the band. In the studio we would play with the recording. I was very nervous during cocktail hour about the dance but am very happy with how it turned out!

What detail of the wedding was most important for you?

For me, the most important detail was the venue. We wanted a place that was meaningful to both of us, had a large ballroom to fit our guests comfortably, and a huge dance floor. The Foundry had all of that and more. After touring about 6 other places, we made it official with the Foundry and haven't turned back since.

How did you end the night?

After an epic sparkler sendoff complete with a spontaneous singing of the National Anthem and then the EAGLES chant, we boarded our getaway vehicle and returned to our Bridal Suite at the hotel. We took a few minutes to breathe and then made a short appearance at our After Party at the hotel bar before calling it a night!

Wedding Cake from Masters Baker

What was your favorite thing about your wedding?

My favorite thing about my wedding day was dancing on the dance floor with all of our family and friends. Our band, Strangers (BVT Live), kept the party going strong all night long!

Best part of the wedding planning?

I enjoyed the food tasting event with J.Scott Catering at the Foundry!

What advice will you give your friends getting married?

Make sure you don't get carried away with planning your wedding that you forget to plan your marriage. Keep dating your partner throughout your engagement (and marriage). And premarital counseling with a professional is cool!

Emily & Matt's Team of Wedding Professionals:

Ceremony & Reception Location:  Phoenixville Foundry

Photographer:  Right Start Photography

Videographer:  Allure Films

Catering: J Scott Catering

Florist:  Bs Events and Floral Design

Band: Strangers (BVT Live)

Rental Furniture: Lilac and Lace

Hair & Make up: Cheers2U Events

Brides Dress:  Maggie Sottero

Bridesmaid Dresses: Bill Levkoff

Suits: Ventresca Ltd

Cake: Masters Baker

Officiant: Journeys of the Heart

Day of Signage: Sunshine Letter Co

Transportation: New Rhoads Transportation

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