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Real Wedding: Rena + Anthony

Rena and Anthony hit it off immediately when they met via a dating app.

Seeing potential for a relationship that couldn’t be ignored, Rena and Anthony dated, rescued a few pets and fell completely in love.

Anthony knew that when he proposed to Rena the moment wouldn’t be right without the perfect ring. Luckily, he knew that she wanted an oval cut champagne diamond with halo set in rose gold and was able to find just what she wanted.

With the ring in hand while they were getting ready to go out for their first anniversary dinner, Anthony got down on one knee in the doorway of their bedroom with their dachshund jumping in excitement, and asked Rena to be his forever.

“Obviously, I said yes,” Rena says.

After organizing other brides special days for the past 20 years, Rena was more than ready to take on the challenge of planning her own wedding and she knew exactly what she wanted!

“We wanted it to be low key and fun with a small group of people closest to us,” Rena says. “Being a coordinator myself, I wanted to keep it simple and fun.”

Both being Tibetan Buddhist, the couple had a traditional ceremony filled with symbolism, including lanterns lighting the way down the aisle and the lotus flower which made numerous appearances. It was especially meaningful for Rena because she was able to write the ceremony and it was the first time Anthony was able to take refuge – which is like dedicating yourself to Buddhism – even though he has been studying it for years.

“As many of our guests are not Buddhist, our programs helped explain some of the word meanings, helped walk our guests through the meaning of the ceremony and included a closing prayer for everyone to recite together,” Rena says. “There are many misconceptions about Buddhism, as there are with many other religions, so it was nice for those close to us to really see what it’s all about.”

With the love in the air feeling tangible, Rena created a day that she, Anthony and their guests would never forget.

“We still get compliments on how beautiful and touching our ceremony was.” Rena says.

Vendors: PLANNER/DESIGNER: Alchemy Events | PHOTOGRAPHY: Julia Bailey | CEREMONY + RECEPTION: The Cannery | OFFICIANT: Rose Mortillaro | BAKERY: Frosted Fantasies by Nikki | VIDEOGRAPHER: Studio Vieux Carre’ | BRIDE’S GOWN: Pronovias | MENSWEAR: Calvin Klein, Men’s Wearhouse | RECEPTION ENTERTAINMENT: Tracey Edwards & Anonymous | HAIR + MAKEUP: Lauren Fremin | DECOR RENTALS: Decor on a Dime | CATERER: Toulouse Gourmet Catering| FLORALS, CANDLE DECOR/LIGHTING: Christina O’Malley | HENNA ART: New Orleans Henna | INVITATIONS: Designed by Bride | DOGGY WEDDING CAKE: Amis des Paux | JEWELER: Ramsey’s

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