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Tying The Knot In Steel City | Nikki & Clayton | Charleston Wedding Photographer

After 10 years together, Nikki and Clayton have tied the knot in this wonderful wedding held at Sheraton Station Square in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania! They’re such a fun couple. Nikki is brilliant and super sweet and her handsome straight-faced funny guy, Clayton, always knows how to make her laugh. :-) Just after finishing college in California, Nikki & Clayton, who are both engineers, met while working together and started dating two years later. The couple moved to the Charleston, SC area a year after getting engaged and the newlyweds are now enjoying their South Carolina home together with their lovable Labrador! Dearest doggy, Dot, is more than their pet too, she’s a member of the family and she even had a prominent place in Nikki and Clayton’s wedding. :-) Read on and click on the image gallery to see a few favorite photos from their big day, learn more details about this couple, and about their breathtaking wedding in the Steel City!

For their wedding, these two didn’t strictly follow typical traditions. Nikki may have kept with the custom of wearing a white dress for the wedding day, and looked absolutely gorgeous in her Essence of Australia wedding gown from, Gown Boutique of Charleston; and Groom, Clayton looked sharp in his conventional suit from Men’s Wearhouse. The pair however, stepped outside the lines a bit, and included precious pup Dot in their wedding party, having her serve as the "Best Lab” in the wedding. :-) Not every couple can say that about their furry friend! Another break from tradition, Groom Clayton came up with the idea to go with donuts from Just Good Donuts instead of a wedding cake, which the couple highly enjoyed!  

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(Even their footwear is fun! And we just LOVE Nikki's Kate Spade heels <3)

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(Adorable Dot!)

Included in a lot of weddings, are different traditions associated with the heritage of the Bride and/or Groom, and Nikki’s Macedonian family heritage was an important part of celebrating the marriage. There was a folk band there on the wedding day to play music for the traditional Macedonian dances: the Pig Dance and the Bread Dance. A pig dance is often performed at a Macedonian Wedding reception. In this ceremony the male members of the Wedding party and family dance into the Wedding reception, wielding bottles of wine, knives and forks and of course a roasted pig! They dance in front of the godparents for ‘payment’ for the feast. The pig is designed as a symbol of good fortune and prosperity for the future.

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For the bread dance, the bread is round, and like a wedding band, signifies something that has no beginning and no end. The dance starts with the godparents then on to other family and friends. The bread is made from wheat, the basics of life, which is lifted over their heads for happiness. One traditional horo, or circle dance, is danced and the bread is passed around with the other dancers. Another traditional part of their wedding was to have a cookie table. The Pittsburgh cookie table is a European tradition in the region and most of the cookies were made by family and friends for Nikki & Clayton’s event with plenty for everyone in attendance to take home! There were also sweet treats given to guests as wedding favors provided by Sarris Candy.

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From start to finish, they had a beautiful wedding packed with personality from the Bride and Groom and set along the grand back drop of Steel City. Nikki and Clayton are now planning and getting excited for their European honeymoon in October. :-) We here at Valerie & Co. Photographers wish the newlyweds well in their new life together, with new discoveries, sweet memories they'll make on their trip & into happily ever after!

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