All photos (C) Fred Marcus Photography
People still recognize Kim Stolz from her stint on America's Next Top Model, but since that time, she's gone on to become a vice president on the equity derivatives sales desk at Citigroup in New York and also opened a popular Soho hangout, The Dalloway, with her girlfriend (who is the restaurant's general manager), now wife, Alexi "Lexi" Ritsch. The two were married this past weekend, June 15, at Stolz's parents' home in Bridgehamton, NY. Both Kim and Lexi are 30 years old.
"We both clearly remember the first time we saw each other at a dive bar in the Hamptons. The rest of the room seemed to fade away. She was talking with friends and the backyard lighting just lit up her face," says Lexi, who decided to take Stolz as her last name. "My heart smiled the second I saw her; I knew from that moment that she would be in my life."
"We started talking moments later and spent every night together from that point forward," Kim says. "I still see her across a room and forget where I am."
Their first date took place at a restaurant in Southampton, and then the two women went back to Kim's hot tub for champagne. "I think the first date lasted three days," Kim admits.
The two have been together for approximately two years, dating for about seven months before getting engaged, and then they had a 15-month engagement. But, like so many plans, it was more complicated to pull off the "perfect" proprosal for the couple.
"We had both been shopping for rings and I always knew I wanted to propose, and I had a big plan for May 2012--but she figured me out," Lexi explains. "We had a girls' weekend planned in May to travel to Antigua with our moms and spend a weekend together. My mom and I had it all planned out--she was going to help me with the candles and the rose petals in our suite."
Sensing that Lexi was going to propose, Kim said she knew Lexi was going to propose in Antigua, so then Lexi wanted to surprise her girlfriend, so she put a rush on the ring (it was being specifically designed) and was ready to propose over the weekend in the Hamptons. "I had quite a few proposal scenarios running through my head. But then I got a call from Kim, saying, 'I've got a surprise for you!' She had arranged for my best friend Cara to join us in the Hamptons!" Lexi says. "So I spent the weekend carrying the ring around in my bag, and I proposed on Monday because I simply couldn't wait any longer. I took her to dinner, forced her to order the lobster, her favorite, and ordered champagne. She pulled me close and said, 'Is there someone else? Is that why you're being so nice?' We laughed, and I fumbled to find the ring in my jacket that I'd refused to check at a five-star restaurant and demanded that she marry me. Literally, I said, 'Marry me!' and the rest was history. A dozen Instagram photos (and a few phone calls to our parents) later, and we were engaged. I did have to ask her to actually say the word 'yes' about 15 minutes after she had the ring on her finger!"
Kim's ring is an Asscher-cut diamond set between two trilliants. Lexi's ring is an antique cushion-cut diamond set between two triangle accent diamonds. Both are in platinum settings. Jenny Lee designed Kim's dress (she got it at Mark Ingram) with shoes by Jimmy Choo.
The big event began at 4 p.m. on Saturday, June 15. The cocktail hour took place around the pool with hor d'ouerves by Art of Eating and signature Dalloway Cocktails (Gin and Ginny, Eddie's Lemonade, Beerita). The cocktail menu consisted of double-dipped dogs, soft-shelled crab BLT's--and even Lexi's mom's "famous sausage cups."
The dinner featured a Hampton's plate: a bite-sized lobster roll, two baked Long Island clams, and a shot glass of Long Island Clam Chowder. The stations opened as the night progressed and exposed guests to a taste of the couple's planned honeymoon (in Southeast Asia) with Peking duck (hand-carved, rolled in scallion pancakes), boxes of lo mein, and an assortment of dumplings. The Hamptons Station included local favorites such as ribeye steaks, twice-baked potatoes, and wedge salad. The night was filled with dancing (music by Creations), which led back to the pool area where bistro lights lit up the sky. A DJ was on hand to spin, and hot Dreason's donuts (a Hampton's staple) were served. For late-night snackers, they were offered mini burgers, truffle grilled cheeses, and FF cones.
Watch the Vows video from the New York Times.