A NYC City Hall wedding featuring a bride that made her own flowy gown!

City Hall Wedding in Nyc | Julie & Jordan

city hall wedding photographer

nyc city hall wedding

A NYC City Hall Wedding has become en vogue as of late and I.am. here. for. it. Thanks to couples like Justin & Hailey Bieber & Joe & Sophie Jonas, choosing a City Hall wedding made their celebration of love a more casual and stress-free day. In 2018, according to the City Clerk, 49,894 couples tied the knot at a NYC City Hall Wedding. When you walk in, you'll see couples in love happily waiting in line for their number to be called. Family, friends, and city employees, all joined together under one roof, celebrating love in all ways, trading giddy smiles. These couples at City Hall weddings in NYC were surrounded by just as much pure joy and love as they would be at any larger wedding, even if they were strangers - the feelings are real and mutual. I have photographed a number of weddings as a City Hall wedding photographer in NYC and I love finding new ways to tell the love story of my couples. I know all of the corners of the building as well as all of the best photos that we can make inside and outside. From the beautiful steps out front to the unique walls and rooms on the inside, to the surrounding streets, each one providing something a bit different. As a photographer who has witnessed many city hall weddings, I would be honored to capture and witness yours too!

The nEW YORK city hall wedding ceremony PROCESS

Upon entering a City Hall wedding in NYC (which actually takes place at the Office of the City Clerk NYC), guests pass through a charming metal detector and pull a number. Next you're instructed to have a seat in the lobby. Once the number on the ticket is called, couples head to the counter, papers in one hand, spouse's hand in the other. At the counter, licenses are signed and instructions to wait again are given. An officiant calls lovers in through a side door to the altar of their dreams complete with lavender walls and a green bench for guest seating. The couple recites their declarations of intent (2 minutes and no personal vows, I am some ideas for those after the ceremony) and are pronounced married! Simple as that. Everyone then quickly exits through a set of back doors; the excitement adding to the day's wedded bliss pile, for those couples to marry after. Off you go to get some great wedding photos and perhaps a celebratory meal!   

julie and jordans bride and groom photos before their nyc city hall wedding

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we want to elope in nyc

AMAZING! First, let me know that you from overseas and I can obtain a money order for you for your extended certificate (saving you a bunch of time). "The Extended Certificate for Foreign Use has a fee of $35 that includes the cost of the Counter Certification and Raised Seal with Hand Signature." After you elope at the marriage bureau, you have to return to the front desk and apply for this extended certificate. With certificate in hand, you then have to go across the street to the Supreme Court Building and obtain another signature for $3. Then you head to the Social Security Administration Office. I suggest planning a trip to NYC for at least 4 days for your elopement.

Where to do wedding photos in NYC

Most of my couples want to include wedding photos either before or after their city hall wedding ceremony. The Downtown Manhattan area is a gorgeous backdrop for these couples photos. Some iconic locations are within walking distance. Places such as Brooklyn Bridge, One World, City Hall Park fountain, as well as using the surrounding architecture. We can even head over to DUMBO for wonderful views of Lower Manhattan. We can really go anywhere that is special to you! As a City Hall wedding Photographer I can definitely guide you in all of the places we can go! Just ask! I'm here for YOU!

TAKE ME to the CITY HALL IN NYC WEDDING DETAILS

how to get married in nyc city hall

What to wear to a NYC City Hall Wedding

Anything goes for a City Hall wedding in NYC. I have seen brides in gorgeous gowns by Vera Wang as well as denims and a t-shirt; it's really your choice. My bride Julie even made her own gown. She knew that something flow-y with a long train was a must and was ecstatic when she found her perfect gown at Schone Bride - from Rebecca Schoneveld! She wanted a more modest top and opted to make her own. So, she designed a crop top to go over the existing dress' tank. She designed her top to have bell sleeves that were every bit as whimsical as her gown. Julie completed her bridal look with a cape made from gorgeous fabric that she found in the Garment District. 

Julie says, "wearing my dress was pure magic, only adding to the most perfect day of the marriage to my forever rockstar." The key is to be comfortable and happy. If you want to get dressed to the nines, then do it. Or if joggers are more you're thing, go for it! If you do decide to get all dressed up, please keep in mind that the NYC streets are very dirty. Please keep in mind that your dress will absolutely, without a doubt, get dirty. We will most likely walk around for wedding photos and the bottom of the dress will drag. Also, comfortable shoes are a must (even if you bring a pair to change into). Nothing worse than uncomfortable shoes.. Ammmiright...?

getting to the new york city hall marriage bureau

After 10 years of living here, I still rely on the app called City Mapper when navigating in New York City. Your destination will be 141 Worth Street for the Manhattan Branch of the Clerks's Office

HOW MUCH TIME SHOULD WE PLAN FOR OUR CITY HALL WEDDING?

There are no appointments, so marriage ceremonies are performed on a first-come, first-served basis during regular business hours - 8:30-3:45 Monday through Friday. At peak times, like Fridays, the average time it takes to get married is around an hour and a half. Please check online for holiday hours. To be safe, I suggest planning for 3 hours, but be ready for 20 minutes. 


DO WE NEED ID FOR A MARRIAGE LICENSE

Only one form of identification is required when applying for your marriage license. Here is a list of those allowed identifications.

HOW MUCH DOES A CITY HALL WEDDING COST

Where to go after a nEW yoRK City Hall Wedding

After any NYC City Hall Wedding, it's only appropriate to celebrate with champagne and oysters! Head over to the Beekman Hotel for some elegant French bites with your nearest and dearest. If you prefer something with more people, a reception for guests up to 60 can be had within a few walking blocks. Couples can host a dinner in the sky at Manhatta or stay true to being a New Yorker and go for some Soup Dumplings at Joe's Shanghai. Adventurous couple's can even opt for a progressive dinner around town; the possibilities are endless and you can truly have a wonderful wedding day, as easy as that! 

Lastly, a few things to remember - to get married anywhere in New York City, you first need to obtain a marriage license at least 24 hours before you plan to marry. Because we're NYers and we love to save some time, I suggest starting the process online. Have fun, it's your wedding day, it's non-traditional and it's every bit as awesome, if not more. Here are some more FAQs the City Clerk has answered to help guide you! 

City Hall Wedding Cost in NYC: $25 for the marriage ceremony and $35 for the marriage license. You do not have to do the ceremony. You can just obtain the license. Your marriage license is valid for 60 days. 


Julie & Jordan's nyc wedding vendors

Photographer for City Hall Wedding in NYC: Leila Brewster Photography
Wedding Dress Designer: Rebecca Schoneveld
Bridal Salon: Schone Bride
Film Developing: The Find Lab
Top Wedding Venues NYC
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