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Story of our real brides – Gillian and Stephen

Steve and I met during our first day on campus as college freshmen at the University of Dayton back in late August 2006. Steve said he recognized me walking after seeing my Facebook profile and we ended up meeting/running into each other outside of our dorm on Stuart Hill (we lived in the same dorm that the first year). After chatting for a bit, he asked me and my roommate to go to a party he knew of with him and his roommate. I sadly turned down his offer since I wanted to hang with my new college girlfriends at my older sisters house and we went our separate ways.

I never ran into him again and it wasn’t until after we graduated college in May 2010, 4 years after initially meeting on Stuart Hill, that we ended up as neighbors living next door to each other in Kettering, OH. For 2 years we lived across the street from each other and were inseparable – Steve became one of my best friends and my absolute favorite person ever (All friendship before a romantic relationship!). We finally began to date after Steve moved away to Columbus and I realized I couldn’t live without him. We did long distance between Dayton and Columbus for almost another 2 years before I made the big move to Columbus.

Steve proposed to me on the evening of April 10, 2016, at the Joseph Hotel in downtown Columbus – it was a night that I will never forget, full of surprises! He got me downtown for a “dinner date” and told me were stopping to have a pre-dinner cocktail first at the new hotel bar on the 5th floor of the hotel. There was no bar on the 5th floor of the hotel, so he then took us into to a beautiful suite that overlooked the entire city. I had no idea until we got into the suite that he was going to propose to me, there were champagne, the most gorgeous roses and a hand written letter waiting for me. I obviously said yes and we celebrated our decision to embark on a new journey together, just the two of us. It was the perfect night, I wouldn’t have wanted it any other way.

Finding my wedding dress was one of my favorite wedding preparations, hands down! It was such a fun and special day for me, no stress and so much bliss – I couldn’t take the smile off my face, I felt like I was glowing. My mom and I went together back in my home state of New Jersey, and it was an emotional weekend altogether for us. We had just lost my grandfather and my mom was moving from NJ to South Carolina, so it was one of my last visits home with my mom actually living there.

We went to JaeHee Bridal in Englewood, NJ and I found the dress that was literally made for me, it was perfect beyond words and more beautiful than I could have ever imagined. It was also not something I thought I would end up in going into dress shopping, I really surprised myself, since I had my heart set on a ball gown since I can remember. I tried on about 6 dresses that day and my final 2 choices were both stunning Paloma Blanca gowns, I was so drawn to this designer. One was a tulle layered ball gown and the other was the style I ultimately picked as my wedding dress. When I tried on the style I ended up choosing, I walked out in the dress (with the veil too) and my mom started to cry and we both looked at each other and knew I had found my dress. I got this overwhelming yet amazing feeling that this dress would complete my wedding day. I knew when the doors of the cathedral opened on 10/8/16 that this was exactly the dress I wanted to be in and exchange my vows with the person I love the most. Every time I went back for a fitting my mom would meet me in NJ and come with me, each time she cried when I had the dress on, she said it was so perfect for me that it was beyond words. To say I loved my wedding dress is an understatement, Paloma Blanca gowns are the most stunning wedding gowns I have ever seen, every single design blows me away and makes me want to relive my big day over and over again. Thank you for designing the dress of my dreams and making me feel like the most beautiful and sophisticated bride, my now husband told me I took his breath away. My wedding day would not have been the same without my gorgeous PB gown.