Matt Jacobi and Nick Caprio, creators of the viral “Same-Sex Barbie Wedding Set,” are now married.
The couple, who have been together for 12 years, said “I do” on May 25 in an elegant ceremony at the Scottsdale Resort at McCormick Ranch, making history as the first gay couple to host a wedding at the renown venue.
“The resort is a staple venue in the Scottsdale area and we had no idea we’d be the first same-sex couple to get married there,” Jacobi, 38, said while reflecting on his wedding day. “We were a little nervous because Arizona has been historically known to be more of a conservative state, so there is still a bit of nervousness as two grooms look for a wedding venue.”
Once they discovered the wedding venue of their dreams, they asked about the number of same-sex marriages that had taken place in the resort location — only to learn that they would be the first.
But Jacobi admitted that it was “not that big of a surprise, considering marriage equality in Arizona just came to light not too long ago.”
The content creator and social media influencer said that despite his home state’s conservative background, he and his husband’s wedding day served as an example of progression for the LBGTQ community.
“Arizona is changing and people see a lot of growth and more of a mix — becoming more of a purple state,” Jacobi said before talking about growing up in the area. “My experience as a young man struggling inside, knowing that I was different, was difficult. I was an easy target, I was bullied for sounding like a girl, acting like a girl, and just being different from the other boys in my class.”
The newlywed described his recent celebration as a “full-circle moment,” saying he was proud to now be “able to make an impact in the world.”
Jacobi and Caprio, 32, had dreamed of their perfect wedding ceremony for years, but they ultimately took an unconventional approach to planning.
“It was 100 percent a surprise,” Jacobi said, explaining that he allowed event experts Juliet Le Fleur, Glamour & Woods, and Southwest Teepee to handle all the wedding day décor details. The couple had no idea what to expect until that big walk down the aisle.
“Nick and I are creatives and we believe in order to let people do what they do you have to give them the freedom,” he said. “We wanted our wedding day to be unique and special — walking into this venue and being surprised and feeling another element of excitement. We wanted it to be an experience for us to never forget. It also made the planning process less stressful because we didn’t know what to expect.”
He continued, “When we walked into the venue for the first time, it was incredible. Our dreams came true.”
There was one thing that Jacobi did make sure of, though: the rainbow-colored equality cake.
During the ceremony, the couple, who wore matching white tuxedos, toasted to the LBGTQ freedom fighters, honoring those leaders and allies who have helped make marriage equality “the law of the land.”
The wedding ceremony comes almost half a year after the pair made headlines in December for creating a custom “Same-Sex Barbie Wedding Set” for their 8-year-old niece’s birthday.
They had asked Natalie to be a flower girl, and, as a special gift from her gay uncles — or “Guncles” — they wanted to give her a birthday present that would also get her excited for her role in the wedding.
But when the couple could not find a toy for their niece that reflected their relationship, they created their own.
Jacobi presented the custom-created Barbie set to Natalie on her birthday and shared a touching post of the excited 8 year old opening the unique toy. The image of Jacobi’s niece with the same-sex wedding dolls quickly went viral.
“I think when she saw it, her reaction said it all. It was just this special moment and just so organic and so natural,” he said. “We will just never forget her unwrapping it.”
The custom Barbie-inspired set soon caught the eye of the Barbie creators at Mattel, and Jacobi and Caprio were invited to travel to Los Angeles a month later to meet with the toy distributor.
“Growing up, I would play Barbies with my sisters and there is just a connection there. Nick did the same thing growing up with his best friend down the street,” Jacobi said. “And the wonderful thing about Barbie and Mattel is that kids get to create the narrative, and that’s the beautiful thing about toys and why Nick and I made it our mission to shake up the toy industry.”
After a successful first meeting with the famed toy brand, Jacobi explained that the couple’s collaboration is still in the works.
“We are incredibly grateful,” he said of the special opportunity.
The newlyweds have not only made a global impact with their same-sex Barbie creation, but also in their home of Scottsdale.
“Pride month has always been very special to us and for Pride, the Arizona Diamondbacks are having a Pride night and they asked us to open up the night as grand marshals for the team’s pride parade,” Jacobi said.
The dup will also include their family members and their nieces, who will all get to go on the field for the parade.
And while the couple has been able to make successful strides in Scottsdale, they admit that there is still a lot of work to be done in terms of social acceptance.
“There’s always going to be some haters. This is nothing new,” Jacobi said. “People push back, but when they do, that only gives us the determination to keep going.”
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