Because what kind of wedding planner would I be if I didn't blog my own wedding?
I've been planning weddings for a very long time and I finally got to plan my own last year.
Here's the short story - Nate and I met about five years ago on a photo shoot I was directing (he was the model, I was the stylist) and the rest, as they say, was history.
I knew from the start I wanted to get married in Charleston at Wild Dunes, a resort where I had spent most summers growing up. Nate and I had spent a considerable amount of time together there, too, so he had learned to love it over the years as well.
A details-person to the core (obviously), unique personal touches were a must for planning, from the music to the favors and everything in-between. But Nate and I are super different, so instead of trying to find a defined common thread, we really made the event about both of us - things he likes, things I like, and things we like together.
We had four musical acts. Yes, four. To create the backdrop we wanted, we enlisted a DJ, a New-Orleans-style jazz second line band, a surprise acapella choir, and my very favorite singer-songwriter, Jill Andrews. Following a true you-never-know-until-you-ask mentality, I called Jill's agent about 3 months before the wedding and asked if she would play our ceremony. I was shocked and delighted when she actually said yes. I basically fan-girled the whole time she was around.
Here's Jill at our ceremony:
Here's our second line parade. I made sure all of the ladies had parasols because The South.
Another detail I knew couldn't live without was my bike, Romeo. A few years back I bought this bike from a company in Italy and I love it so much we keep it right in the middle of the living room like a piece of art. (Nate is incredibly tolerant of this.) We ended up grabbing him a cruiser of his own for the wedding day and the two bikes followed us throughout the event, as a welcome station, as photo props and as a (not so reliable) form of transportation. (Wedding dresses and bikes are much better in principle than in reality, as it turns out.)
Because I was busy planning weddings back in Asheville, we partnered with our friends at Blossoms at Biltmore Park and Elm Events in Charleston to help style the day. I knew I wanted something that felt both soft and tropical, so we went with tones of pale blush, grey, matte gold, peach and ivory.
I have a real thing about chairs, so I selected the natural wood infinity chair for the reception and accented the tables with garlands of seeded eucalyptus, gold flatware, king protea, and agate escort cards. We also had this gorgeous swimming pool to play with, so jokingly we referred to the theme as "Tropical Italian Courtyard." As for our seating plan, half of our tables were named after Star Wars planets and the other half after famous jazz songs because Nate and I couldn't land on a shared theme.
Our spirit animal cake toppers were made my my dear friend and artist Lindsay Pichaske. We both love animals, especially the red panda and the golden eagle, so it this felt like another good place to get personal. Our guest book was also a photo book of endangered animals.
Nate loves chess and I love London, so our signature drinks were named after a famous chess move and one of my favorite parts of London. (Paper Tangent made us this sign. We still keep it in the bar.)
As risk of being super long-winded here (being honest, it's really fun to talk about your own wedding - you'll see), I'm just going to throw in some other fave photos below.
Oh, and we had a light saber exit - Nate's request. We literally ran out of our wedding screaming, "May the force be with you," proving that you don't have to be an actual Star Wars fan to appreciate a little Jedi magic on your own big day.
Photographer: Alicia Swedenborg
Hair: Salon Zhenya
Makeup: Doll Box Productions
Floral: Blossoms At Biltmore Park
Signage: Paper and Pine, Paper Tangent
Stylist and Day-of Coordinator: Elm Events
Videographer: Two Cents Photographer
Ceremony Music: Jill Andrews
DJ: Stephen Darby Events
Cotton Candy: Pure Fluff Co.
Dress: LeeAnn Belter Bridal