One of the last places Jedediah Bila expected to marry was inside a castle. The TV personality, a former co-host of The View, wanted her wedding aesthetic to radiate warmth and intimacy, leaving off the option of a wedding inside a lavish venue. “I originally was thinking very small,” Bila tells The Knot in an exclusive interview. “We were gonna have it at my mom’s house. We were always thinking 50 people, and then I walked into Oheka.”
Then, the couple stopped by the Long Island castle (the same place where Taylor Swift filmed her “Blank Space” music video and Peta Murgatroyd and Maksim Chmerkovskiy hosted their three-day weekend wedding last summer) with her planner Mikie Russo of Michael Russo Events.
“We went to the library and the two of us completely fell in love,” Bila says of her husband, Jeremy Scher. “I’m a writer, he works in publishing, and you felt like you’re in an old-fashioned antique shop with books lining the wall.” She pauses, “We just looked at each other and were like, ‘This is it.’”
Bila and Scher married on Saturday, February 17, before an intimate group of guests, 59 to be exact. The color palette featured touches of ivory and soft greenery, and muted-but-snug lighting. “My goal was warm,” she muses. “I wanted to have a really intimate feel. This was really special to us.”
To execute the vision, Russo tapped several local vendors to fill out the space. “We had the center ballroom,” explains Bila, “but surprisingly, even though it’s a castle, it felt so intimate the way Mikie set it up. He put furniture in the main room so you have the tables and lounge area on the side. It felt as if you were at a really beautiful home. Say, you were at a mansion… The library was the selling point for me.”
Following their summer 2017 engagement, the couple specifically requested a winter wedding with a seasonal element in mind, and, they lucked out: It snowed that night. “When it started snowing, our photographer was like, ‘We’ve got to get in the snow,’” she recalled. “We were running around. Jeremy was dipping me and we were dancing. I want unconventional all the time. It was actually a winter wedding.”
After exchanging vows, Bila felt a sense of relief. “The most special moment was saying our wedding vows because we wrote our own,” she says. “I really wanted it to be personal, a little funny, we made the people laugh, we included our little nicknames in there, and that was always for me. That moment when we were up there, when I was reading mine to him and he was reading his to mine, I just wanted to squeeze him. He’s so cute.”
Here, The Knot takes a full look at the nuptials.
The Wedding Planner
Russo of Michael Russo Events (event designer for Kym and Robert Herjavec as well as Kevin and Danielle Jonas) embellished the space with a soft white and green palette, bringing life to the rows of books with a subtle elegance. “I told Mikie: ‘I want a lot of candles. I want warm ivory florals. I want gold,’” Bila recalls. “He made it come together so beautifully that there were gold accents everywhere and ivory. He put greenery popping out that looked like potted palms. It was so beautiful and I couldn’t imagine.”
Russo’s attention to detail even touched the custom linens provided by Jericho-based vendor Table Wraps. “Even down to the linens, which matched the dress,” Bila says. “They were lace and it looked like I draped my dress over the table. It was unbelievable!”
The bride wore two dresses, the first by Rivini by Rita Vinieris for the ceremony, and the second, a shorter piece found at the Wedding Salon of Manhasset for the reception.
“This, of course, was Mikie once again,” says Bila, who found her gown during a visit to Kleinfeld Bridal. “I thought I was going to get married in jeans and a T-shirt. I said, I don’t want lace, I don’t want strapless and I don’t want a ballgown. He had a designer, Rivini, on the fact that I wanted an old-world feel. This was the first dress I put on, so I loved it.”
Hair and Makeup
It turns out that Bila’s glam squad is also her daily squad. The conservative personality’s longtime makeup artist Vincenza Carovillano and her hairstylist Dora Smagler together pulled together the bride’s beauty look. “Vincenza is the first person to ever put TV makeup on me. Now she’s like my sister,” says Bila. “She has done every single major thing in my life.”
Bila’s updo was done by hairstylist Dora Smagler. “Dora did my hair all year last year at The View,” the bride says. “I cannot emphasize enough that those two people who you know and love. They’re behind the scenes with you. They hear everything. They’re really the people you’re talking to before you walk down that aisle.”
New Hyde Park-based floral designer Pedestals Floral Decorators created a lavish display to fill out the castle venue.
City Headshots captured numerous sweet moments from the couple’s big day.
The couple tapped dance photographer Jordan Matter to capture their nuptials. “Everyone I chose for the wedding—all the people—from the hair and makeup to the photographer—were really close to me,” she says. “Jordan is very creative and I didn’t want traditional photos.” Matter also captured the couple’s engagement photos in New York City last summer.
The pair married at Oheka Castle on Long Island.
The First Look
While the bride originally thought she wanted to skip the first look session, she ultimately decided a first look was the better option overall. “I didn’t want to miss my cocktail hour,” she says. “Mikie and a lot of friends of mine, they were like, ‘If you wait for the photos—and if you get them done early—then you’ll be able to spend more time at my wedding.”
The First Dance
For a wedding song, the couple selected “Keeper of the Stars” by Tracy Byrd. “The lyrics made us both so happy the first time we heard it,” the bride says.
Guests enjoyed a lavish meal comprised of options like grilled sterling silver filet mignon served with a port wine demi-glace and caramelized garlic mashed potatoes and haricot verts, as well as a pan-seared, French-cut chicken breast, and a seared Atlantic salmon with saffron rice and champagne truffle sauce.
The bride and groom’s wedding cake, designed by Daniel Andreotti, was comprised of vanilla and chocolate filled with mousse.
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