We wanted our wedding to be rustic and whimsical, with a touch of understated elegance. Our color palette included blushing pink, sage green, light gray, and slate blue.
Nearly all of our decor was DIY. I painted the acrylic table signs, the seating chart, and the windowpane that served as both a program and welcome sign. I also hand painted small wooden skateboards that we used as our place settings. (Matt was really into skateboarding when we met, and it’s what led him to move California.)
Yes, flowers played an important role in our wedding. We used mostly pink and white roses, purple and green succulents, and eucalyptus leaves. These flowers were incorporated throughout our wedding: two floral arrangements flanked each side of the barn entrance, the aisle was lined with tall, glass lanterns with alternating candles and flowers, and our sweetheart table was also adorned with a beautiful floral arrangement, as well.
Yes, we added many personal touches to our day. In addition to the skateboard place settings I mentioned earlier, the tables were named after places that are significant to us. For example, the Diamond Mine was one of the names because that’s the name of the dance club we met at on St. Patrick’s Day in 2000. The Waterfront was the name of another table because Matt proposed at the waterfront in Charleston, SC. The guys wore AIM (AOL Instant Messenger) lapel pins on their suit coats because that’s how we kept in touch when he moved to California. I also hand painted a wooden mailbox to resemble the AOL mailbox, which was placed on the gift table and used as our card box.
Matt wore a slate blue suit from Banana Republic with a skinny pink tie. He chose to wear a suit that he already owned because it matched our color palette, and I loved the way it looked on him. His best man wore a light grey suit with the same skinny pink tie, and the bridesmaids wore blushing pink dresses in the style of their choosing. I found THE dress in the very first dress I tried on. Of course, I tried on many others but none compared to the first. The dress is ivory and strapless, with a sweetheart neckline, an A-line silhouette. It features embroidered and Chantilly lace allover and a chapel train. The dress was designed by Lillian West.
ST PATRICK’S DAY, 2000 – I was a college freshman, and on the dance floor of the Diamond Mine, a blue-eyed boy dressed in blue jeans and a white t-shirt captured my attention. His was Matthew. When Matt asked me to dance, we really hit it off right away and became nearly inseparable in the weeks and months that followed. But, when Matt was given the opportunity to move to California to pursue his dreams later that year, we both knew he had to take it. Despite the many miles between us, we were able to keep in touch with each other for about a year or two (at least as much as two teenagers can manage in a world without cell phones–which was mostly thru email and AOL instant messenger), but life eventually got in the way and we fell out of contact. FAST FORWARD 18 YEARS. After years of searching on social media, Matt finally located me on LinkedIn after I connected with his friend Cole. He reached out and we quickly began to message back and forth with one another. Those messages soon turned to texts, and those texts turned into hour long phone conversations, and those phone conversations led to multiple cross-country trips, and all of it culminated when Matt proposed in Charleston on July 5, 2018. We got married on the same week that we met on the dance floor of the Diamond Mine twenty years ago. And, the rest as they say… is history.
As cliché as it sounds, the most anticipated moment for both of us was the moment when we said “I do” and our marriage was official. We had waited 7,303 days for that moment, so it was pretty special.
Expect the unexpected, seriously. I know this is yet another cliché, but I don’t think this advice can be stressed enough. Things will go wrong and not everything will happen the way that you planned it, but your wedding will still be special and amazing. No matter how big the catastrophe. I am meticulous, and well-organized, and created an enormous wedding binder that had all of my plans laid out, down to the very last detail. We were engaged for almost two years, and I thought I’d accounted for every likely (and unlikely) thing that could possibly go wrong. I was confident I could how to handle any obstacle thrown our way, but the one thing no one could have expected happened–a global pandemic. This was well beyond something I could control or an obstacle I could dodge. I was heartbroken that many of our nearest and dearest friends couldn’t be there with us (including every single one of Matt’s groomsmen). I was annoyed with everyone who tried to tell us that our day would still be amazing and special despite everything… BUT THEY WERE RIGHT. Our wedding was just as amazing and special as we had hoped it would be. All that really matters in the end is you and your partner and the love that you share. The rest is just confetti.