One year after Petra Halloran and John Pieper started spending nearly every weekend together at Petra’s family beach house, John proposed while they returned to the home, walking the beach with their dogs. “When my little poodle Cricket came running back to me, she had a note on her collar. I read the note and looked behind me, and John was on one knee,” remembers Petra. 

John's friend popped out with a picnic basket for a celebratory toast, and when the newly affianced pair walked back to the house, their friends were waiting to congratulate them and celebrate with a lobster and clambake dinner. “It was a fantastic weekend – I was surprised so many times!” smiles Petra. 

Though the couple resides in Pennsylvania, they decided to return to the area where they fell more and more in love each weekend by the beach at the beginning of their relationship to exchange vows and celebrate their love with their friends and family in such a special place. “Once we decided on East Hampton, we were lucky enough to secure our first-choice venue, an amazing photographer, and everything fell into place,” Petra confirms of the planning process. 

Desiring a traditional ceremony, the bride and groom were married in a church. Both the interior and exterior of the sanctuary were adorned with lush greenery and vanilla-toned blooms, setting the design scheme for the rest of the nuptials. 

The bride was a vision of classic beauty in a high-neck, long-sleeve lace gown, and the groom was handsome in a navy tuxedo for the vow exchange. In a subtle break from tradition, the couple recited their vows facing their loved ones in lieu of facing the altar and having their backs to their guests. 

“We didn’t have a theme – more of a feeling.”

Once loved ones made their way to the reception venue, they enjoyed an alfresco cocktail hour with a view of the sea. Escort cards were displayed atop a layer of moss dotted with fresh ivory blooms. 

As guests entered the reception space, which featured a towering vaulted ceiling, wood beams, and floral-embellished chandeliers, they found their seats at round and rectangular tables highlighting both high and low centerpieces of fresh greens and florals in crisp whites and light blues

“We didn’t have a theme – more of a feeling,” shares Petra of their desire for everything to be timeless and beautiful, but also set the tone for a fun party. Seasonal floral varieties that were in bloom at that time on the East Coast were selected, and the classic color palette of white and green with blue accents was carried over beautifully into monogrammed linens. 

“I now have a lifetime supply of napkins,” laughs the bride of the addition that elegantly complemented the design scheme inspired by trees, meadows, and nature. “I was so happy with the result. It looked like springtime indoors!” 

After dinner, friends and family enjoyed slices of a toasted almond wedding cake with peach thyme marmalade and raspberry-and-cream fillings decorated to resemble the bride’s gown. Attendees also delighted in a photo booth, as well as casino games such as craps, roulette, and poker in the next room. An outdoor firepit also provided a relaxed setting for “the ultimate s’mores-making bar” with various types of marshmallows, chocolates, and toppings, as well as hot cocoa and cider to top it all off. “The dance floor was still packed, but if anyone needed a break, there was plenty more fun to explore!” Petra adds of their dream wedding day they’ll never forget.