Company Brings Pop-Up Weddings to Pittsburgh
Jan 30, 2017 07:42PM
By Erica Cebzanov
Photo courtesy of Lavender Leigh Photography
Joshua and Melinda Haberman thought they had to give up on their dream wedding when they were forced to cancel their plans—three months from their big day—due to ongoing contract and communication issues with their wedding venue’s representatives. Fortunately, the couple learned about The Pop Up Pittsburgh Wedding Co. through their photographer.
Owner Tricia Derry describes the concept as a “high-end elopement” or a “wedding in a box” for approximately 20 guests or less. These all-inclusive weddings are more extravagant than courthouse weddings, but more simple than traditional plans.
“It’s a one-stop shop. I deal with all of the vendors, and the couple just has to show up that day and get married,” Derry said, noting that many of her clients had been engaged a while, but had never gotten married because they dreaded the stress associated with conventional wedding planning.
Each 90-minute ceremony and celebration starts with a Pittsburgh Wedding Chapel official conducting a legal ceremony, while a photographer captures images. Afterward, the photographer conducts a short photo shoot with the couple. Sapphire & Lace Event Design provides neutral-colored flowers for the couple with a “vintage vibe.”
The post-ceremony celebration features a champagne toast for the newlyweds, a sparkling non-alcoholic bar, The Pop Up Pittsburgh Wedding Co.’s signature popcorn bar, a Mixed with Love Cake & Cookie Co. ceremonial cake and sweet treats for guests. Oftentimes, groups will dine at a restaurant following the event.
Derry offers one wedding location per season, usually with several slots per day. “No two brides will ever cross; no guests will ever know there was a wedding before them or after them,” she said. “We’re able to flip the space and be ready for the next wedding.” Previous locations have included Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens in Oakland, Carrie Furnaces 6 and 7 in Rankin and the Historic Pump House in Homestead.
The Habermans tied the knot Sept. 26, 2015 at Point Breezeway, an urban barn in Pittsburgh’s East End. “Tricia created a shabby chic, outdoors dusk wedding,” said Melinda Haberman. “She and Lauren [McMillen, Point Breezeway’s owner] worked to provide me with a custom wedding that was unforgettable.”
Derry welcomes traditional couples, same-sex couples and those getting married for the second time. “It’s also people who don’t want to follow the rules; they don’t want any of the traditions,” she said. “They want their guests to experience something very different.”
Trendsetting in Pittsburgh
Derry, who also owns the Vintage Alley Rentals decor rental company, founded The Pop Up Pittsburgh Wedding Co. in 2015 after learning of the trend which originated in Australia. She saw a need for this service in Pittsburgh.
“It was not much of an investment to put into it, other than finding a good group of vendors that I work with all the time to build my team,” she explained. “Then I found a venue and just saw what happened.”
“She just naturally cared about our happiness, which I hadn’t felt from many people throughout the process,” said Haberman of her experience. “She was my fairy godmother in my time of need.”
TheKnot.com reports that the average wedding costs more than $32,000, while a wedding through The Pop Up Pittsburgh Wedding Co. costs around $3,000.
At press time, the Pop Up Pittsburgh Wedding Co. had one Feb. 18 “City Chic” wedding opening at The Union Hall at Bar Marco in the Strip District, and openings Oct. 21 for a “Traditional Pop” wedding at The Historic Pump House at the Waterfront.
Watch the company’s website for details regarding a summer pop-up at www.thepopuppittsburghweddingco.com.