Fourth in an occasional series about a couple enamored with each other - and with good design.
When Gabrielle Deifik and Brad Schuller began planning their June 21 wedding, they took as their starting point the celebrated, nondenominational MIT chapel, one of their favorite spaces around Boston. The undulating brick walls, cascading metal sculpture above the altar, and muted light lent a feel that to them was just perfect.
"It's really all about the chapel," said Schuller, 27, a medical physicist who earned his doctorate in nuclear engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
The other elements of the wedding then fell into place: the couple's wedding invitations feature a copper-colored abstraction of the chapel, while Deifik's champagne organza dress shimmers with gold metallic threads. When it came time to choose a site for the reception, Schuller and Deifik realized they needed to look no farther than next door.
The Lobdell Dining Room, on the second floor of MIT's Stratton Student Center, appealed to the couple because it is both "formal and a very modern space," said Deifik, 27, an architect at Payette Associates Inc. in Boston. The room's floor-to-high-ceiling windows allow for lots of light, perfect for the "garden party" atmosphere the couple hopes to invoke for their 120 guests. (The wedding and reception will take place in the afternoon.)
Since they got engaged in April 2007, Deifik and Schuller, who live in Cambridge, have been planning a wedding that reflects their modern design sensibilities. Rather than choosing ready-made ideas from wedding magazines and websites, they've been taking their own ideas and deciding how best to realize them. The Globe Style section has been tracking their progress. Readers can also follow the couple's blog, thedesignmuse.blogspot.com.
Having the reception at Lobdell would also be convenient for out-of-town relatives wary of driving and parking in the city, Schuller said.
"We wanted it to be chill," he said. "We didn't want people to have to worry about moving their cars between the wedding ceremony and the reception."
Covering the tables will be white cloths with a gold organza overlay and white napkins tied with copper ribbons, each napkin holding a single peacock feather to match Deifik's headpiece. Centerpieces will be jade plants, symbolizing friendship and prosperity, in square copper receptacles.
"We thought about flowers, which are beautiful, but we wanted people to be able to take something home, something that will live beyond that day," Deifik said. The couple is also considering bringing in around 15 5-foot-tall trees, to add to the indoor garden feel.
When it came to a wedding cake, the couple decided, once again, to do things differently. Rather than have one large cake, Deifik and Schuller decided on an array of smaller cakes, from Patsy's Pastry in Somerville.
"They were all so good we couldn't decide on only one flavor," Deifik said.
As for the all-important matter of music, The Nashua Flute Choir, which will play at the wedding ceremony, will perform at the start of the reception. For the rest of the event, Deifik and Schuller have been scouring their CD collection, choosing love songs over a catchy beat.
"People can dance if they want to - there will be a space for that," Deifik said. "But we want a relaxed atmosphere where people can talk and catch up. We don't want people to feel pressure."
Next up: the wedding.