Ayesha and Steve first met when as teenagers. Ayesha went to fill out a job application at a local pharmacy to earn some cash to pay for prom, and there Steve was behind the counter. “We exchanged numbers and a friendship was formed,” Ayesha remembers. “One thing led to another and here we are today. I call it fate.”
After taking some time apart, Ayesha and Steve got back together and continued dating for five years. Steve made a pact with God that if he ever got a second chance with Ayesha, he’d never let her go. He made good on that promise by proposing to her in the most romantic way ever. “My girlfriends told me that a chef was hosting a tasting in Brooklyn, but they tricked me,” Ayesha says. “As I entered the studio, there stood Steve in the center of the room with 40 of our closest family and friends surrounding him. Rose petals, candles and smiles filled the room.” In front of every she loves, Steve asked Ayesha to be his wife.
The couple decided to exchange vows at the Surf Club On The Sound in New Rochelle, New York because of its amazing waterfront views. With the help of their wedding planner, Victoria Lartey-Williams of Victorious Events NYC, the bride and groom’s white and gold wedding fantasy came to life beautifully. All they had to do was show up and look their best. “Victoria helped make our dream wedding into a reality,” Ayesha told ESSENCE. “I can’t imagine having planned our wedding without her.”
Scroll through the gallery for the most stunning moments from Ayesha and Steve’s elegant New York wedding.
Want to see your wedding featured on Bridal Bliss? Send your story and a link to your wedding photos to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.
"For my hair I wanted an old school Hollywood glam look with deep waves," said the bride. "For my makeup, I wanted bold eyes with fierce coverage and contouring. I believe I told my makeup artist Abby of Juicy Looks to make me FEEL like Beyonce on my wedding day. I couldn't have asked for a better glam squad."
On Cloud 9
"I felt like I was on a natural high on my wedding day from the start of the morning at 6:00 am until our last guest left," says Ayesha. "It was everything I ever dreamed of and more."
A Style All Her Own
"I found my dress in just one day," says Ayesha. "I had an appointment at a popular bridal salon on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan, but none of the dresses were appealing to my body shape. Later that afternoon, I had an appointment at a Black-owned bridal boutique called Pantora Bridal located in Brooklyn. As soon as I slipped on the 'Femi' gown by Andrea Pitter-Campbell, I knew with all my heart that this was my dress!!"
A Family That Slays
Ayesha and her bride tribe were slaying even before getting dressed up. Yes, queens!
The Smile Says It All
Steve, who calls himself an introvert, said becoming a groom felt surreal. "All of that attention focused on me that whole day was overwhelming and exciting at the same time," he told ESSENCE.
Ayesha and Steve decided to do a first look prior to the ceremony. "Walking down the long spiral staircase to see the love of my life for the first time that day will be something I will never forget," Ayesha says.
Safe to say the groom liked what he saw - true beauty!
In keeping with the Black Excellence theme, Ayesha and Steve wanted their wedding party to wear all black. The bridesmaids wore black mermaid style gowns by Jessica Angel Collection.
The Music Of Love
Ayesha and Steve's guests were serenaded by a live saxophone player until the ceremony began.
The ring bearer's sign was a hit with guests.
Here Comes The Bride
Ayesha walked down the aisle with her father to "You & I" by John Legend.
Its All In The Details
Ayesha's cathedral length veil stole the show.
The Tie That Binds
"During our ceremony we had a scripture reading, Genesis 2:18-24," says the bride. "Our officiant Reverend Roxy performed a hand fasting ritual in which our hands were tied together with African fabric while she prayed over us to symbolize the binding of our lives."
Steve and Ayesha lit a unity candle at their ceremony to symbolize coming together as one.
Forever And Ever
Officially Mr. And Mrs. Louisaire!
Always Have My Back
"Steve is the kindest, most selfless, and genuine man I have ever met," says Ayesha. "He pushes me to be better. On days when I doubt myself, he encourages me by fixing my crown and reminding me that I am a beautiful Black queen and that I am enough."
Ayesha and Steve continued the elegant theme of gold, white, and black throughout the reception. "I pitched my vision to my wedding planner and florist and together we chose the decor," says Ayesha. My husband was very adamant about having all high centerpieces. We alternated between tall centerpieces with white flowers and candelabras with cascading white flowers. "
The reception was lit from the moment they walked in.
"For our first dance, we played 'So High' by John Legend. We danced on a cloud and had indoor fireworks. It was magical."
"I met Ayesha when I was 21, but I didn't realize she was the one until I was 25," says Steve. "I kept a promise to myself that if God ever gave me another chance with her, I wouldn’t let her out of my sight."
Now We Feast
The couple and their guests dined on filet mignon with red wine sauce, roasted French chicken and miso-glazed salmon with a tropical salsa.
Hit The Dancefloor
"Our reception had a mix of all the music we love: new school, old school, R&B, Haitian kompa, soca and reggae," says the bride.
Towards the end of the night, guests received Haitian flags, glow foam sticks, Co2 cannons to kick off Haitian Flag weekend.
Feels Like A Dream
"Our wedding planner Victoria helped make our dream wedding into a reality," says the bride. "My husband and I were completely stress-free and had an amazing time. Our guests are still raving about our wedding.:
Ayesha's Advice To Brides
"Enjoy, enjoy, enjoy! I can't stress that enough. I often hear brides say that they are stressed out and I feel bad. This is supposed to be the most exciting time of your life. Have fun and remember what you're doing it for."