Through the years, Pursuit has been humbled by the number of couples who have chosen to make us a part of one of their biggest days by outfitting their wedding. We help our customers find the exact style to fit their vision—and now we’re beyond thrilled to share how that vision came to life for Natalie and Mathew Near. Read more about their wedding day, why they chose Pursuit, and some important advice for the soon-to-be-married men out there.
Why did you ultimately choose Pursuit for yourself and/or your groomsmen? In other words, what made Pursuit stand out amongst the rest?
I have been in numerous weddings as a groomsman where I spent hundreds of dollars renting tuxedos that were always below average in both fit and quality of materials. I inevitably woke up the next day with nothing to show from the rental experience except for the blisters on my feet and a looming deadline on when the tux had to be returned. Knowing that I could buy from Pursuit at the same price point, receive better service and superior quality and wear the suit long after the wedding made the decision a no-brainer. Additionally, having the opportunity to support a locally owned business that gives back to the community it serves was icing on the cake.
Tell us a little more about your suit.
The bridesmaids wore black cocktail dresses inspired by our 1950s Havana Night theme. My wife and I chose the French Blue suit paired with a white undershirt and black tie for the groomsmen. We felt the vibrant blue color would really pop against the white undershirts and be tied together with the bridesmaids’ dresses by the black accent of the tie. The Pursuit team did a great job listening to Natalie’s vision of the theme and making recommendations on how to pull the look together. I would also be remiss if I failed to mention that my groomsman Clint is 7 feet tall. As we started the wedding planning process, we knew that finding a suit that fit him and looked great would probably be the most challenging part of the wedding! Pursuit came through with a custom suit at an affordable price that looked great on him and he will be able to use for many years to come.
We’d love to hear details: when and where did you get married? Any special reasoning behind the date or location?
We knew from day one that we wanted to do a destination wedding and ultimately settled on the wedding and reception being at the Ernest Hemingway Home in Key West, FL in February. Neither of us had been to Key West prior to deciding to have our wedding there, but as soon as we visited the island in January the year before the wedding, we knew it was the place for us. With the laid-back island attitude, bar-hopping culture on Duval St. and the combination of the quirky six-toed cats and history at the Ernest Hemingway Home, we couldn’t envision getting married anywhere else. We also knew that talking our friends and family into going to Key West in February would be a pretty easy sell for us.
Were there any noteworthy stories from the day of your wedding?
It was important to us that somebody we were close with and who really knew us would officiate our wedding, so we chose my brother-in-law and groomsman, Aaron. I think it was one of the best decisions we made, as he did a fantastic job and was able to make the ceremony very personal for having known us for approximately 10 years. Surprisingly, Natalie and I were able to keep our emotions in check throughout the entire ceremony. Aaron, however, became choked up at the end and was barely able to get “I now pronounce you…” out.
Any advice you could give the men for their big day?
My advice to guys during the big day is to eat a hearty breakfast the morning of, drink a few beers or cocktails before the ceremony to take the edge off and try to remind yourself throughout the day to stop and really take it all in. Everything moves so fast and the pictures won’t be able to capture all of the truly special moments, so stop, take a deep breath and appreciate your friends and family that had a hand in getting you to where you are.
What are you looking forward to now that the wedding day is over?
I am looking forward to sharing unique and fun experiences together as husband and wife before we move on to the next chapter of our lives. We have our honeymoon, a 16-day backpacking trip across eastern Europe, booked for later this year. The trip is anchored by Oktoberfest in Munich and we are both excited about getting in touch with our German roots!
A huge thank you to Natalie and Mathew for sharing your wedding stories and giving such thoughtful feedback! And a special thank you to Care Studios Photography for capturing the love and happiness on Natalie and Mathew’s big day!
- Photography: Care Studios
- First Look/Photoshoot Venue: Key West Lighthouse
- Ceremony/Reception Venue: Ernest Hemingway Home
- Wedding Dress: David’s Bridal
- Wedding Planner: Destination Wedding Studio
- Groom + Groomsmen Suits: Pursuit
- Bride + Bridesmaid Makeup/Stylist: Real Beauty by Shaina
- Flowers: Duarte Floral Design