Zoe Katz, the founder of Good Eye Vintage, and Ryan Nowicki Stewart were set up on a blind date while attending Cornell University. They shared their very first kiss that same night at Cornell students’ go-to late-night dive, Pixel.
Six years later, Ryan picked up an engagement ring from her family jeweler during the first week of March in 2020. However, his proposal plans were thwarted by the pandemic. By the end of the summer, he decided to pop the question at his family’s beach house. Ryan’s mother was undergoing treatment for cancer at the time, and Ryan knew it was so important that both families were there to celebrate the day. During a routine beach walk, he got down on one knee and asked Zoe to marry him with their families and a professional photographer waiting in the dunes to celebrate. Ryan’s mother passed away before the wedding, making the engagement photos treasured moments for the couple.
Slim Aarons, Zoe’s favorite artist, was a major inspiration while cultivating the wedding aesthetic. “I wanted to take our friends and families on a vacation that had the same relaxed, la dolce vita feeling as a Slim Aarons photograph,” she explains. While the pandemic meant the couple couldn’t have an Italian or Greek destination soirée, Palm Springs was the perfect stateside alternative that could still serve up easy glamour, incredible weather, and old-school Sinatra. They turned to Fawn Events for the planning and Sally Pinera to document the day.
Ryan and Zoe chose to marry on May 14, 2022, at a private residence. Since Ryan’s parents married on May 5 and Zoe’s parents married on June 14, a 5/14 date felt like a suiting homage to their families.
Vintage is a huge part of Zoe’s life, and she wanted to ensure that she balanced her bridal looks between modern styles and vintage pieces. Enlisting Over The Moon’s head stylist Anny Choi to help her decide on her outfits was “the best decision” she made. “Working with Anny was a dream, and she got my old/new vision immediately and truly brought it to life,” Zoe shares. For the Friday night White Party, Ryan and Zoe wore “something blue.” He donned a blue jacket and white linen pants from Suitsupply with Stubbs & Wootton shoes. Zoe was dressed in a custom dress from Sandra Mansour via LoHo Bride, paired with vintage blue lace Manolos, a vintage Oscar de la Renta bag, and pearl hair accessories from Jennifer Behr. She finished off with Sophie Billie Brahe jewelry and the diamond tennis necklace that Ryan gifted her on the anniversary of their engagement.
To get ready for the wedding, Zoe dazzled in a hot pink, feathered vintage Oscar de la Renta dressing gown from Happy Isles with vintage Dior dressing shoes. For the wedding ceremony, she wore a Marchesa gown that was customized with feathers and a cathedral-length Amsale veil that was adorned with the extra florals from her dress to bring the look together. Her Joy of Bloom Florals bouquet was tied with Ryan’s mother’s favorite blue scarf and Zoe’s grandmother’s handkerchief.
She later switched into an Alex Perry dress and Gianvito Rossi shoes for dancing, complemented by a vintage diamond tennis necklace from Beekman New York. She would up the ante with even more feathers and sequins for the after-party with her custom two-piece suit from Danarys, By Far heels, Completed Works earrings, and Jennifer Behr hair accessories. Kissed by AML styled her hair, and Shadi Malek and Amber Lopez did her makeup.
The groom sported a Ralph Lauren Purple Label Tuxedo and Stubbs & Wootton loafers. His bride gifted him a vintage Rolex and her grandfather’s pocket square. He also wore Cartier cufflinks, a gift from his soon-to-be in-laws. He would switch into a printed Robert Graham white dinner jacket for dancing. For the after-party festivities, Ryan changed into a silk shirt from Tombolo Company.
Zoe’s bridesmaids picked their own floral dresses. The designers ranged from A to Z—Agua by Agua Bendita and Zimmerman, that is. For a finishing touch, Zoe took a 1920s tennis bracelet with antique diamonds and turned the piece into stud pairs for her bridesmaids.
On May 14, 2022, Ryan and Zoe exchanged their vows to each other in front of their loved ones, underneath a chuppah that has been in Zoe’s family since the 1930s. “Each couple wed under the chuppah hand-weaves their names and dates into the cloth, passing this tradition down to the next couple,” Zoe says. In the audience, they kept a chair empty in honor of Ryan’s mother and placed a picture of her in the seat. Zoe’s older sister, Emma, was the officiant, offering anecdotes that made the ceremony truly personal and equal parts tender, funny, and downright tear-worthy. Groomsman Zander performed a reading of the couple’s favorite poems and one of Zoe’s bridesmaid’s, Alex, sang an incredible rendition of Etta James’s “At Last.”
Cocktail hour commenced around the pool with a full martini bar, while the DJ from Second Song played a mix of Sinatra and Motown. Vintage pieces that Zoe had sourced for the weekend, like a 1970s Martini Lamp and 1950s cocktail stirrers, added to the old school vibes.
Dinner was held on the front lawn.”We really wanted to embrace al fresco dining, so we didn’t want to go with a traditional sailcloth tent that would cover the beautiful scenery,” Zoe notes. “Instead we did a lighted tent, which was absolutely magical to watch come alive as the sunset. Ryan and I love to throw dinner parties at home, and we wanted the dinner to feel like a natural extension of that.” The meal was catered by Flavor Chef and served family-style. Once the plates were cleared, the push pop ice creams came out, and the dancing began.
The reception was so fun, she ended up changing into her second outfit behind the tent. “I didn’t want to miss a minute going back up to the house!” she laughs. “Thank God for my mom, bridesmaids, and a spare tablecloth!”
The after-party silent disco commenced by the pool with pictures of Studio 54 and glittering decor. “Our DJ absolutely smashed it, and we ended up dancing until 4 am!” Zoe exclaims.
When Zoe reflects on her wedding, her favorite part was “definitely having dinner and dancing in the desert under the stars, listening to toasts that made us laugh till our bellies hurt and shed a few tears, sitting and celebrating with our friends and family, eating amazing food, drinking martinis, and watching the sunset and the full moon come up.”