A Modern Black-and-White Wedding at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan

For their wedding at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan, Ellen and Joshua settled on a elegant, timeless black-and-white color palette with refine

For their wedding at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan, Ellen and Joshua settled on a elegant, timeless black-and-white color palette with refined decor and details. “Josh and I were inspired by simplicity and timelessness, but with a modern twist,” recalls Ellen. “I was especially inspired by the mid-century modern vibes of our venue that simply spoke for itself. We really built our wedding around the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan. We wanted to look back at the colors, details and entire day and say, ‘Wow, that aged beautifully.’ Both of us wanted to stay away from trends that would age themselves quickly, which was why we selected a neutral color palette. We also wanted the whole day to feel elegant without being pretentious or stuffy.”

Bringing their dream wedding vision to life was made easier by the fact that Ellen herself is a designer and created all the stationery for the event. “I'm a designer and designed all of our stationery, invites, seating chart, table cards, cocktail napkins (which featured illustrations of our three cats), matchboxes, menus, signage, etc,” shares Ellen. “I designed everything to feel cohesive with our vision and the space. All the designs were minimal and elegant.” To complement the paper elements Ellen created, the couple brought in refined flower arrangements and elegant wedding rentals. “Our favorite details were our florals and ghost chairs,” recalls Ellen. “The white flowers with greens looked so classic and elegant in the space and the ghost chairs opened up each room of our venue.”

Fashion played a major role in helping the couple bring their wedding vision to life. Not only did Ellen and Joshua don sleek outfits for the wedding day, but they also found subtle ways to tie in moments of personalization throughout the fashion choices are well. “I wore a sheer, mermaid, boat neck with cap sleeves gown. The dress featured embroidery and appliques all over it that sparkled when the light hit. One of my best friends Jake selected the dress and I had my doubts seeing it on the rack. Once I tried it on, I knew it was the one. It was the third dress I tried. I selected it because it was so different and unlike anything I had seen before. It didn't scream traditional bridal, which I loved. It also was sexy enough for Josh, but conservative enough that my 90-year-old grandmother would love it...and she did! I paired the dress with a pair of satin champagne pink Prada heels with a beautiful art deco strap of crystals across the toe. They were so comfortable and I wore them all night. Josh actually picked them out in New York on a trip before Covid. It meant so much that he chose my wedding shoes,” shares Ellen. She goes on to explain that “my two cousins, aunt and grandmother all sewed a portion of my veil.” Meanwhile, Josh wore a custom tuxedo made locally in Detroit. “He opted for a very classic, old Hollywood look with the white jacket and black lapel. The jacket interior was embroidered with the saying ‘Life Birds 08.20.20.’ That is what we refer to each other as and 08.20.20 was our original wedding date. We couldn't add the new date due to the jacket being completed, so we have an homage to the first date we picked. Josh paired the tux with an incredible pair of velvet Gucci loafers with the traditional gold horse bit. Josh wanted to bring in a modern element to his look, while still remaining classic. He wore a Shinola watch as a little nod to our venue and living in Detroit along with a custom-made bracelet from my cousin. She created bracelets for all the groomsmen and earrings for all the bridesmaids.”

Looking back on their wedding day, the couple has a myriad of “favorite” moments and highlights from their Michigan wedding. Notably, they were especially excited to finally get married “after two postponements and a year and a half of waiting,” recalls Ellen. “That was just the best. The four speeches at our wedding were also out of this world. Also, Josh even got a call from the International Space Station wishing him a happy wedding day (our buddy works for Space X and pulled some strings). And we absolutely loved dancing the night away to our amazing 10 piece live band before continuing our celebration with an after-party that went till 4 AM at one of our favorite spots in Detroit.” 

Modern Black-and-White Wedding Invitation Suite
Wedding Party in All-White Attire
Atrium With Ghost Chairs and Greenery-Covered Chuppah at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan
Wedding Ceremony in Glass Atrium at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan
Groom Stepping on the Glass at Jewish Wedding
Bride Laughing With Grandmother During Michigan Wedding
Groom in Black-and-White Tux With Bride Wearing Veil
Wedding Party in Black-and-White Attire at the Shinola Hotel in Detroit, Michigan
Modern Clear Acrylic Seating Chart
Classic Place Setting With Gold Accents
Ballroom Wedding Reception With Ghost Chairs and White Linens
Father of the Bride and Mother of the Bride Giving Wedding Toasts
Three-Tier White Wedding Cake With White Cake Flowers