Something Blue Takes on a Whole New Meaning
Find out how Katy Titus and Phil Swart honored the bride’s grandparents, who passed before her big day.
In the midst of planning their big day, Philip Swart and Katy Titus knew their “I dos” would not be complete without nods to Katy’s late grandmother and grandfather.
“I grew up next door to my grandparents and we were extremely close. Unfortunately, they both passed away in 2017 before Phil and I were even engaged,” says Katy. “When we started planning for the wedding, I knew that I wanted to incorporate them into the wedding in some way, but I wasn’t quite sure how to go about it.”
After hours of brainstorming and searching for inspiration, Katy found a white wedding dress with blue hydrangea designs on it by Romona Keveza, a fashion boutique based in New York City.
“[The dress] immediately reminded me of my pap. He loved blue hydrangeas and had several bushes planted in his yard,” says Katy. “My mom was able to track down the runway sample. As soon as I tried it on, I knew it was perfect. They took my measurements to custom make the gown, and a year later, I had my pap dress.”
Prior to Katy’s walk down the aisle on Sept. 7 at Carnegie Museum of Art, only her parents and one cousin knew of that particular tribute to her grandfather.
“I really wanted it to be a surprise. In many ways, I felt like my grandparents were with me, planning the wedding, wanting to surprise everyone,” says Katy. “Once my extended family saw the dress and the decorations, they immediately knew who I was honoring.”
Their floral arrangements, including Katy’s bridal bouquet, were blue hydrangeas, and their reception cake, baked by Bella Christie and Lil’ Z’s Sweet Boutique, had a blue hydrangea painted in buttercream.
“For my gram, we made the cookie table her focal point. We dug up all of her old recipes and made as many of her cookies as possible,” says Katy. “Instead of favors, we donated to a food bank where she volunteered for many years.”
Their traditional Pittsburgh cookie table was covered with a little over 50 dozen cookies — three quarters of the recipes were her grandmothers. According to Katy, her favorite cookie on the table was the waffle cookie.
“They’re no bigger than the palm of your hand and resemble a waffle in shape and texture,” says Katy. “She used to make huge tubs of waffle cookies when I was growing up, and my pap would dip them in his nightly cup of tea. Our cookie table was completely wiped out, and I owe that to my gram.”