Throughout my 4+ years of writing here on Southern Weddings, I’ve written about couples BDK and I have been wedding date twins with, who have similar stories as us, and even a groom that played on the same baseball team as my beau. But, Wendla and Thomas are a very special couple to me, as they’re the very first reception venue twinsies I’ve had the pleasure of writing about! I have always adored the Lakeside Inn for its charm, location, and beautiful porch, and seeing it decked out in gold glitter is so unique! BDK and I had a very traditional reception in the lobby of this historic hotel, and seeing its front lawn transformed into Wendla and Thomas’ pretty navy celebration has me planning a trip to Mount Dora in my head. I can assure you, the adorable town is as magical as their celebration makes it look!
Thank you so much to Kt Crabb for sharing this sweet soiree with us!
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The bridesmaid dresses! I knew I wanted gold sparkly dresses, but was having a hard time finding exactly what I wanted. My neighbor, who is also a seamstress, offered to help make them. We searched through many fabric stores and ordered countless fabric swatches until finally finding the winner. Each girl sent her a dress they already had that fit them well, and the seamstress recreated the dresses in my fabric. I was very nervous about how they would look all together, but it turned out perfectly. They glimmered and sparkled all day long!
Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We wanted our wedding to be traditional, so a first look was just not for us. I was so excited to see Thomas’ expression at the front of the church when I walked down the aisle. And I’m so glad we waited–his face at that moment was my favorite part of the day!
Knowing we would both be anxious on our wedding day, repeating traditional words seemed more realistic for us. As simple as repeating vows seems, I was so excited on our wedding day that I blurted out “I will” before the correct time, much to the amusement of our guests! Thomas’s father is a Methodist minister in Tennessee, and was able to perform half of the ceremony, along with my church’s minister. His homily was perfectly tailored to us and our relationship.
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? I am from Mount Dora, Florida, and my family has lived here for many generations, so it was important for us to share that with our guests. We were married at St. Edward’s Episcopal Church. My great-grandparents owned the house that used to stand on the property of the church, my grandmother played the piano there many years ago, I was baptized there, and I spent many summers and lots of time after school there with the youth group. With all of those memories, it was the perfect place for Thomas and I to say “I do.” For our reception, we went to the Lakeside Inn during our search and immediately knew that we would have our reception there. It is a historic hotel on the water in the heart of Mount Dora with a large yard in front. Our planner suggested putting a white tent there and making the place exactly what I wanted. I melted at that thought!
I absolutely love hydrangeas. My grandmother had blue ones in her garden when I was growing up, and they were always so gorgeous! I chose whites and light pinks in order to not overpower the striking bridesmaid dresses (my favorite part of my entire wedding, other than my groom). My bouquet was made of white hydrangea, light pink garden roses, and a dusty miller collar. My reception flowers were very special, because they were arranged by my mom’s good friend and nursery operator, who volunteered to make my floral dreams come true. She set up all of the white hydrangeas in my multiple tall and short vases.
We met at a coffee shop to taste cakes made by an adorable lady who works out of her home. Thomas chose two flavors for the head cake: a pink champagne cake (her custom flavor) with cream cheese filling, and white chocolate cake with raspberry filling. I chose the edible gold glitter for the outside of the cake.
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met in medical school in July 2012. I was an incoming second year student assigned to Thomas, an incoming first year, to be his “big.” I helped him move into his new place and get ready for his first year. I was immediately infatuated by his Southern charm and good looks. I am so grateful for my dear friend who set up the big-little matching! Soon after school began, we started studying together daily. That eventually led to me giving Thomas an ultimatum: either we go on a date, or I had gone too far beyond my big-little responsibilities. He was a true gentleman and won me over on our first date. By the end of the year, we had introduced our families to each other.
Tell us all about the proposal! Thomas completely surprised me! He got my father’s blessing and my family heritage diamond, picked out the setting, and waited for a good time. We were living in different cities and had hectic schedules, and he came into town one weekend for a local gala fundraiser. When I got home from my shift, he was already there with flowers and wine. That wasn’t too out of the ordinary, since he always went above and beyond during the times that we could see each other. He took me out to my family home’s back porch to “look at something in the backyard.” When I turned around to ask what he was looking for, he was down on one knee. I couldn’t believe it! He asked me to marry him and I said “Absolutely!”
When did y’all get married? March 21, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 175
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Our parents and bridal party entered to a piano rendition of “A Thousand Years,” which we heard on the radio months before the wedding and flagged it to be a part of our big day. Our first dance was to “Come to Me” by the Goo Goo Dolls. Thomas used to sing it to me every time it came on in the car, and one day, I said “Can this be our first dance?” He was very excited!
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Nothing says Southern more than family! From the pre-wedding parties to the after-reception soirée, mine and Thomas’ families mixed and mingled like old friends. The people in my hometown went above and beyond to make sure our wedding day (and the whole weekend) was just what we wanted.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Studying for medicine is a task in itself, but adding a wedding to the mix is something else. We truly learned how to communicate and listen during our engagement. We were living in different cities for rotation purposes, and had to schedule and reschedule wedding planning opportunities. This taught us a lot about each other, and even more, it taught us about balancing our careers and marriage.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? I matched into pediatrics in Orlando, so we will live together for a year. He will match next year in a military residency program, and will most likely have to move out of state to be on an Air Force base. We will live apart for a few years apart while our careers start, but eventually will be reunited to start a home together. With his military commitments, we have no idea where we will be, but we are excited for the adventures that come with that!
Photographer: Kt Crabb Photography / Ceremony Venue: St Edward’s Episcopal Church / Reception Venue and Caterer: Lakeside Inn / Florist: Terri’s Flower Shop / Cake Baker: The Cake Lady / Rentals: Grand Rental / Lighting: Grand Rental / DJ: Accent Entertainment / Bride’s Gown: Mikaella Bridal / Hair and Makeup: Pure Aveda Salon / Bride’s Shoes: Vera Wang / Groom’s Coat: itailor / Menswear: Michael Kors / Bow Ties: The Tie Bar
Kt Crabb is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!