The Samara Kaufman and Brian Waldman Wedding
By By Cat Zambito; Photographs by Jade & Tim O’Connell, Uplift Photography
Samara and Brian are a modern-day love story. As we live in the era of the Internet, this couple appropriately met online at Chemistry.com. Since Samara and Brian travel extensively for their work, they decided to meet for tea (a first for Brian) at Push Café in Gramercy in New York City on New Year’s Day, 2008—a day they knew they would both definitely be in town.
They clicked right from the start and, after a marathon eight-hour first date, they both knew they had found their special someone.
After two years of dating, Brian knew it was time to take things further and whisked Samara off on an adventurous date to Croton Point Park, where he planned a picnic proposal.
Wanting to enjoy their engagement, they waited a year and a half before tying the knot. During that time, they had the great fortune to find a home with four acres of land in Ossining. They knew the property would be the perfect location for their unique, DIY wedding.
It also would be the ideal location to capture that outdoorsy and organic feel that was so important to them.
Brian, a hotel real estate agent originally from Long Island, and Southern California-raised Samara, a technology, and process improvement manager for the Girl Scouts of the USA, wanted to create “a casual, fun, big-party atmosphere without all the pomp and circumstance,” she says.
Samara was lucky enough to find a great market florist in Hartsdale that was able to exactly accommodate the bright colors and wildflower theme, which complemented their color scheme of magenta, purple, green, and orange. The bride arranged them herself into table arrangements, only using a florist for the bouquets and ceremony flowers.
Brian, a true romantic, chose Samara’s wedding band based on its similiarity to the one his grandfather gave to his grandmother back when they were married in 1941. And, in place of a traditional ring bearer, they honored their grandmothers with a special tribute.
Both Jewish in heritage, but more spiritual than religious, they wanted to incorporate a variety of different traditions from around the world into their ceremony.
One of those traditions was of Japanese origins: Theydisplayed more than 1,000 colorful paper cranes— all of which were patiently handcrafted by their mothers—around the grounds to signify good fortune—.
In place of a traditional wedding cake, they instead choose an extra-large black-and-white cookie—a favorite of theirs from Enrico’s in Hartsdale—which was complemented with both a dessert table and a Scotch-and-cigar station.
Their wedding was a weekend affair which began with a pool party and barbeque on Friday, a picnic at the park where Brian proposed on Saturday, the wedding on Sunday, and a brunch in their home on Monday.
Samara’s dress was a simple, classic, flowing gown made of raw silk designed by Marisa gowns, which she found at RK Bridal in Manhattan. Wanting to keep her look casual yet ethereal, she choose a pair of silver peep-toe jeweled flats from Vera Wang, which were accompanied with handmade accessories and very natural hair and makeup.
The most amazing part of Samara’s experience of planning her dream wedding was walking out into her beautiful backyard on her wedding day once everything was completed and “seeing her vision come to life in a way she had never imagined before." The feat was extra impressive considering they had an uninvited guest—Hurricane Irene arrived four days prior to their wedding and threatened to ruin it all. Thankfully, it did not.
Lola’s Café and Catering
131 Washington St
Large Black and White Cookie
Enrico’s Pastry Shop
200 E Hartsdale Avenue
Stephanie & Jeff
The DJ Solution
106 Fairview Ave
Rubrums Florist & Gifts
154 S Highland Ave
51 S Moger Ave
Jade & Tim
318 W 39th Street
New York, NY
The bride wore family heirloom pearl earrings from groom’s mother that were redesigned by a friend of the bride with sterling silver and beading.
The Beautiful Bride
18 Jones Ave
Joseph A. Bank
36 E Main St