Our Story

erika & eli steinbeck

How We Met

We met at Samantha’s wedding in May 2013. Samantha is his cousin and my best friend. He was an usher and I was a greeter for her wedding and we were actually paired together for pictures and the entrance to the reception. We started dating a few months later.

She Said Yes!

December 18, 2014

How He Asked

Oh my gosh! He put SO much thought in the proposal. I thought I was headed to dinner with my family on December 18, 2014. On the way to the restaurant my mom handed me a box. Inside there was a note and ring pops. The note said “Yes, I already asked your dad” because he knew that was important to me and the ring pops were included because I told him I didn’t need a diamond ring and would say yes to a ring pop. So I obviously knew what’s going on then. We turned a corner as and I saw him standing in front of The AP Green Tree of Lights in my hometown. He went over his proposal checklist and gave a short speech which included telling me me how much he loved me then he asked if I would marry him. He also had a photographer (same as our wedding photographer: David Pickering Photography) take pictures of the entire proposal. After I said yes he turned me around to see both of our families watching. After lots of hugs we did finally go to dinner.

Shopping for the Dress

I am not the girl that had my wedding planned since I was 5, I didn’t even have a Pinterest board until after we got engaged. I did enjoy shopping for my wedding dress but at the beginning it was a little overwhelming because I didn’t want to have any buyers remorse. After a month of being engaged I desperately wanted to try on a dress so my mom and I went to David’s Bridal. I didn’t find any that wow’d me but it helped to narrow down what kind of dress I wanted. We then scheduled an appointment at two stores in STL, one being Boulevard Bride. Boulevard Bride was the first appointment. Jenn was super welcoming and made me feel incredibly special, like I had known her for years and she was just as invested in my day as I was. I just felt different when I looked at myself in the third dress I tried on. It was the first dress I could say that I loved, not just liked. I knew it was my dress. Even though I loved it, we had another appointment and I felt compelled to still go. We were honest with Jenn and promised to come back if it was in fact the dress I wanted. The other, coincidentally,  store gave me the same dress and again, I knew it was mine. We left and immediately went back to Boulevard Bride. I wish I would have known that if the dress, store, emotions, and everything else feels right to just do it. If I had to do it over again, I wouldn’t have gone to the other appointment.

Something Borrowed…

My parents got married April 19, 1986. My mom really wanted her veil so her veil actually cost more than her end of clearance dress. her veil was handmade by Mike Nolte of Columbia, MO. My mom and I have always been very close so I liked he idea of wearing something of hers but I tried on her dress when I was in high school and it was already too small so that left her veil, jewelry, or shoes. I absolutely loved her veil!! Everything…but the headpiece. When I found my dress, Jenn had me try on a couple different veils. My favorite was a cathedral and my mom pointed out that the lace on my dress was almost identical to the lace on her veil, which was also a cathedral. We took her veil with us for my first fitting and, she was right, the lace was almost identical. We both loved how the veil looked with my dress but I hated the headpiece. I’m sure it was cool in the 80’s but yikes not anymore in 2016. It was actually her idea to figure out how to preserve the veil while also removing the headpiece. Jenn suggested we have her mom? (I think) do just that. My mom was thrilled with how it looked and ecstatic that I was going to wear it.

The Bridesmaids

Purple is my favorite color and quickly after getting engaged I chose plum as one of our wedding colors. The process for finding their dresses was super easy! Most girls came to the store with me and tried on a few dresses I had already given the okay on. Two girls, with very different body types, tried on one dress and they both looked great so we went with that dress. The girls that weren’t able to make it to Boulevard Bride went to a local tailor and sent Jenn their measurements. Because of Jenn’s expertise she was able to order the correct size for all seven girls, one girl was even due 1.5 months before our wedding.

Our Favorite Part

My favorite part was getting married! Probably not what you were looking for, so my favorite part of the ceremony was definitely our sand ceremony. We couldn’t practice that part and I accidentally missed the container opening. Eli has to use his fingers and clean up my mess. It got the entire church laughing. I included pictures.

What Moment Do You Wish You Could Relive?

Easy! I would relive our first look. We wrote each other letters and exchanged them before having a private moment before the ceremony.  It was intimate and perfect! For about 15 minutes, it was just the two of us (and our photographer) enjoying our day. 

Married Life

and then there were 3

How is Married Life?

Oh man! So many great things! But I think my absolute favorite part is waking up and going to sleep next to him each and every day. We went to school 90 minutes apart and only lived in the same town once we got married. Our son, Everett, is the happiest baby I have ever met! He is only 6 months old but our lives are already so much better since he came along. His newborn pictures were taken by Madigan.e.photography I’ve learned that communication really is key. Talking through problems, emotions, and struggles is so important to keeping a relationship strong.

What Did You Like About Boulevard Bride?

What I didn’t like would be a much shorter list: the distance from my hometown. Boulevard Bride (Jenn) was so welcoming, caring, fun, and professional. Like I said above, Jenn made me feel like she was just as happy and invested as I was.