I love what I do. As a photographer, there is so much joy in making images of folks who love each other in a way that’s just palpable—you feel it every time you are around them. This couple, Mareena and Reggie, are like that. They sort of glow with love, and their wedding day was certainly lit up by that glow.
I asked Mareena to write a narrative about their day and the relationship that lead up to it, to go along with some photos we chose. Here’s what she had to say:
Reggie and I met my freshman year at Florida A&M University. He was a junior, newly minted frat guy, and I was newcomer on the FAMU yard. We were friends for 7 months before we started dating; the friendship stage was largely due to me playing hard to get, according to Reggie.
We became a solid unit over the four years we dated, mainly because in the very beginning of our relationship we agreed to allow our relationship to grow at its own pace, without any outside pressure. Being older than me, Reggie decided to pursue his master’s degree in Tallahassee, which allowed us to stay together and keep building our relationship. After four years together, it was time for me to graduate and go off to graduate school in Boston, and it was then that Reggie asked me to marry him. Since day one, Reggie has always made our relationship a priority, and never shied away from stepping up to the plate to be the man that I want, so saying ‘yes’ was an absolute no brainer. I knew I found ‘my one’.
As fiancés, we moved to Boston so I could start my doctoral program in nuclear engineering at MIT. Needless to say, we both had a lot on our plate, me getting oriented in my new school setting and Reggie working tirelessly to get his marketing start-up, Ghost Note Agency, off the ground. We decided to wait to get married until I passed my doctoral qualifying exam. Secretly, as the bride, I wasn’t looking forward to the wedding planning process, but once I passed my exam, Reggie and I agreed we would plan the wedding as a team. Really, I would be the captain and Reggie would be the coach, providing me the much-needed pep talks and context for those more stressful moments.
Going into the planning, we firmly decided that we would have the wedding we wanted. Neither of us are high maintenance, so we wanted a wedding that felt effortlessly fabulous, and focused on sharing this special occasion with those who are dearest to us. We knew we wanted to party, and highlight the big city personality of Boston, and we focused our planning on those elements at each step. Luckily our ‘effortlessly fabulous’ wedding aesthetic lent to our desire to keep a responsible budget. Since we are both in our mid-twenties, and currently building our lives, we wanted to be as clever as possible in achieving the looks that we wanted without breaking the bank.
Our wedding took place at the MIT Chapel, a cylindrical chapel with floor-to-ceiling brick, marble flooring, and an altar that is to die for. The simplistic elegance of the chapel blew us away, and was the perfect backdrop for our lifelong vows to each other. Following the wedding ceremony, guest made their way in true urban fashion, via cabs and UBER, to the cocktail hour and reception in downtown Boston at Petit Robert Central. During the planning stage, we knew the vibe of reception was an important part. We wanted it to feel like an epic club night with friends, so we knew the drinks had to be flowing and the music needed to be right. This vision really motivated us in choosing Petit Robert Central as our reception spot. They had multiple rooms to choose from with pre-existing décor that made our planning process much easier. We chose the Provencal Room within Petit Robert Central, which offered us the ‘lounge vibe’, complete with a wall-length black leather couch, wood flooring, and a magnificent dark wood built-in bar from which the drinks were flowing!
When we got to the door of the reception, the love in the room was huge. Everyone was so happy to see us happy and it truly was a special moment in our lives. Our DJ immediately turned the party out, with a little help from Doug E. Fresh who shut the reception down! (Thanks Doug!) We danced like it was undergrad all over, and like our grandparents were not in the room. We laughed, we joked, we did the ‘stanky leg’ and, on that day, everything was right with the world. We had the wedding we wanted to have. Everything was perfect, and we are happy we did it our way.
Back Bay Florist – Flowers for Wedding and Reception
Adam “DJ Anybody” Carpenter – Reception DJ
Petit Robert Central – Reception Space and Food
Michelle Davidson-Schapiro – Photographer/ Impromptu Bridal Saving Grace
I DO I DO Wedding Gowns D.C. – Bridal Gown
Le Meridien Cambridge – Host Hotel