Caroline and Ben first met in 2015 when they both were working for a tech start-up in New York City. “Ben was my on-board buddy. He welcomed me to the company environment and my role within it,” Caroline remembers. They became fast friends, often going to lunch and happy hour together. “We were both in relationships at the time. Everything was work related, but there was always an underlying feeling that this could be more. Those romantic feelings were finally addressed that following summer.” Not yet on the same page of what they wanted in terms of a relationship, they dated on and off for the following six months. In an age where dating apps play instant matchmaker, their long, more traditional courtship comes across as refreshing. “Looking back, this period helped build the relationship that Ben and I have now,” Caroline says. “We had been colleagues, friends, then ‘more than friends.’ By the time we were ready to commit, we knew each other inside and out.”
Caroline and Ben got engaged in March 2021. Working remotely during the pandemic, they decided to spend the winter in Palm Beach where Ben’s parents have a vacation home. “We go on boat rides with Ben’s family every season. It was my birthday and his parents planned to take us out on a special charter to celebrate. I sensed something was up when they abruptly cancelled because of another engagement.” The couple went on to have an incredible day together, drinking, listening to music, and enjoying the picturesque ocean views. “Ben proposed to me just at the sun was setting on the water. It could not have been more picture-perfect.”
They returned to New York City in April and immediately started thinking about where to get married. “Knowing that there was going to be a surge in post-pandemic weddings with venues booking up, I wanted to get on it early,” Caroline says. “After checking out a few places in Brooklyn, we visited the Liberty Warehouse. Because it is such a raw space, Ben and I knew we could make it whatever we wanted it to be for our wedding. We explained our vision to Jeff, the Director of Catering – he just got it and gave us a reassured feeling that he and his staff could make it happen. Our experience with him coupled with the atmosphere, views of the water, and delicious food made the decision to get married at the Liberty Warehouse very easy for us.”
With the venue locked down, Caroline placed her focus on finding a wedding dress. “I originally wanted to wear something really modern and simple. But when I went to try on those types of dress, I didn’t feel special. The huge ballgowns didn’t feel right either. I then set my sights on a look that was somewhere in the middle.” This realization came after going to multiple appointments with family and friends – the downside of having an entourage is that one’s better judgement can become clouded with everyone sharing their opinion once you step out of the dressing room. “My ‘say yes to the dress’ moment happened at Mark Ingram Atelier. I went by myself and worked with Joy who showed me their Mira Zwillinger collection. I was immediately drawn to the fresh, fun, yet timeless feel of her designs.” Based in Tel Aviv, Mira Zwillinger is known for ethereal, feminine bridal wear that combines luxurious fabrics with exquisite detailing. Caroline’s dress featured a fitted bodice that gave way to a diaphanous tulle skirt with an extended train. Delicate hand embroidered flowers cascaded from the sweetheart neckline down through the back of the dress, imparting a sense of dramatic romance into the design. “I didn’t leave everyone completely in the dark, I texted them photos after making my final decision,” she says with a laugh.
Caroline’s choice of jewelry was not only beautiful, but also carried sentimental meaning. “For over a century, Ben’s family has owned and operated the fine jewelry business, Hamilton Jewelers. As a gift, his father helped me custom design earrings inspired by the floral motif on my dress. I also wore an emerald-cut diamond bracelet and eternity band to match my engagement ring.” She finished her big day look with an elegant bouquet of white peonies, roses, and ranunculuses, René Caovilla shoes, and a chapel length veil. Ben dressed the part in a sharp black tuxedo from Tom Ford with white ranunculus and greenery boutonniere.
Floral design and styling were a thoughtful reflection of the couple’s personality and cultural heritage. “Because the Liberty Warehouse’s interior is like a blank canvas, I definitely wanted there to be a theme. Ben is Jewish so we knew we were going to have a Jewish ceremony. I’m Italian and to make my side of the family feel welcome, we incorporated a bright color palette – I love coral – and details such as citrus fruit, which gave the impression of being on the Amalfi Coast,” Caroline says. The couple wrote their own vows, exchanging those heartfelt words under a breathtaking chuppah featuring lush greenery embellished with various roses, ranunculuses, tulips, stock, and dendrobium orchids in shades of pink, peach, orange, yellow, and white trimmed with lemons and oranges. “We strung Ben’s grandfather’s tobacco pipe, his grandmother’s handkerchief, my uncle’s pocket watch, and my grandmother’s thread and needle into the chuppah. These heirlooms paid remembrance to our loved ones who had passed on,” Caroline adds.
After enjoying champagne and hors d’ouevres during cocktail hour, guests were greeted by a show-stopping escort card display. “Using painted tiles instead of name cards was a last-minute decision and worked perfectly with our ‘Coast of Italy’ aesthetic,” Caroline says. Reception décor featured an array of centerpieces punctuated by vibrant blooms and warm candlelight. Round tables were topped with lemon tree centerpieces accented with a bed of moss and cornucopia of citrus fruit. Farm style tables were laid out in a series of grouped arrangements featuring bold florals and rich greenery complemented by glowing pillar candles. Blue and white floral linens, blue glassware, and patterned chargers underscored the romantic, Old-World atmosphere.
Caroline and Ben’s wedding can best be described as a vision of love by grand design. The couple’s decisions were guided by meaningful attention right down to the dessert and favors – a traditional Italian Millfoglie wedding cake and Amalfi lemon and mint scented candles by NEST. After the cake was cut, Caroline changed into a second dress by Vivienne Westwood and Gianvito Rossi shoes. The evening flowed into an after-party with dancing fueled by Shake Shack and the Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory. “Everything just felt right, even the rain added to the magical mood,” Caroline says looking back. “The entire day was a dream – the best day of my life!”
Couple’s Vendor List
Venue: The Liberty Warehouse
Photographer: Jaymo Jaymes
Videographer: Shutter & Sound
Planner: Chére Rosalie
Bride’s Dress: Mira Zwillinger (ceremony) + Vivienne Westwood (reception)
Bride’s Shoes: Rene Caovilla (ceremony) + Gianvito Rossi (reception)
Groom’s Tux: Tom Ford
Makeup + Hair: Hair By Alison Farfan + Nikkii Kasak
Rings + Jewelry: Hamilton Jewelers
Linens: BBJ La Tavola
Rentals: Party Rental Ltd.
Bars + Escort Card Display: RentQuest NYC
Cake: Alfonso’s Pastry Shoppe
Music: Marcus Reid Band for Hank Lane Music
Lighting: Pegasus Productions
Food Truck: Shake Shack + Brooklyn Ice Cream Factory