Arif (he/him) and Aaron (he/him) are from the United Kingdom and traveled to New York City to elope in an intimate Central Park wedding ceremony before returning to their home for a big wedding reception. The elopement day was spent mostly in the park and on Manhattan’s Upper East Side. The morning of the ceremony, Arif and Aaron explored the building that inspired Carrie Bradshaw’s apartment in Sex and the City, as well as several museums and cafes. That evening, the husbands shared a private meal at a small bistro.

Arif and Aarons’s suit jackets were inspired by nature, and they chose velvet due to the chilly fall weather. Arif’s red suit jacket was by Roberto Cavalli, and Aaron’s jacket was handmade by Vivienne Westwood’s top seamstress, who is a family friend. The tuxedo shirts were both found on High Street, then tailored to fit, and the bowties were custom-made by a close friend. An avid Star Wars fan, Arif wore cufflinks inspired by Star Wars. Both grooms rocked Louboutin shoes.

We caught up with Aaron to hear more about their love story and destination elopement.

How did the proposal happen?

Arif and I got chatting about the next steps for us, and we decided to get married. There was no ring, just us. The thing is, we never needed a proposal. We just knew our love was stronger than any question to be asked.

Tell us about your wedding!

We planned NYC because my mum died when I was thirteen, and it was her wish to see it. I met Arif at eighteen, and the first place we traveled together as a couple was here, to fulfill my own and my mother’s wishes. The inspiration behind eloping was to have a one-on-one ceremony together and take ourselves on a journey back in time. The palette was reflective of the seasonal trees and woodland in the park and something we thought a lot about getting right. Culturally we are from a Protestant Christian, Catholic, Jewish, Muslim and atheist family so there was no right or wrong way to do the ceremony. We are fully supported in our love by all the religious backgrounds we have in our beautiful mixed family.

What was the most special moment of your wedding day?

Putting a ring on it. We have been together for nearly thirteen years. We’ve had the lows and the highs. We got married and our commitment to each other couldn’t get any stronger, and putting a ring on it signified it.

What advice would you give to engaged LGBTQ+ couples?

The real beating heart of your wedding is the people who surround you. Not the chandeliers, not the fancy cars, not any expensive cake or meal. The staff, the people and their words are what made our day, so be grateful!

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Photographer: Florencia Saav Photography
Officiant: Kevin Bain
Ceremony Location: Central Park
Attire: Roberto Cavalli; Zara

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