Google+ mori lee Archives - Southern Weddings

Southern Weddings

Tag: mori lee

As much as I love all things classic and traditional, it’s always fun to see a wedding that’s different from anything I’ve ever seen. Monique and Tim’s celebration certainly falls into that category, from the paper crane details (read their proposal story to learn about the significance!), to the hanging chalkboard escort cards boards, to the impressive black, white, and gold dessert display. What I love most about the details they selected for their wedding, though, is that they were super intentional about what they wanted to put time and money toward. While I’m sure interior designer Monique had no shortage of ideas for the wedding’s design, they stuck with the things that were most important to them, and let the rest go–meaning lots more time for weekly date nights and sweet time preparing for marriage during their engagement!

Thank you so much to Alex Michele for sharing Monique and Tim’s fun day with us!

After two negative experiences at big bridal salons, we decided to stop in at a smaller boutique I had heard of as a last try that day. We arrived an hour before the store closed and were welcomed with smiles. I pulled 5-6 dresses into the dressing room and tried them on as the owner of the store helped me. She then brought another dress into the room and encouraged me to give it a shot, even though it was over my budget. I honestly was wary, as I have watched shows where the girls fall in love with dresses they can’t afford, so I was trying dresses on from least expensive to most expensive. Once I got through the first six dresses, I put the last dress on that the owner of the store had brought to me and walked out of the dressing room. Immediately, my mom burst into tears, and both she and Tim’s mom were speechless. The display model fit me perfectly, and had little details that made it unlike any dress I had seen before. We ended up getting a great deal on the dress and it was so perfect!

Tell us all about the proposal! On our third dating anniversary, we went to our favorite restaurant in Gainesville, Manuel’s Vintage Room, a small Italian place downtown. After enjoying a delicious meal, Tim led me to the car and told me he had a surprise for me. He parked in a nearby garage and grabbed the basket of small origami cranes he had made for me throughout our relationship–probably around 100-150 cranes total. After a short walk, we approached Gainesville’s Double Helix bridge, a beautiful new landmark in town we had talked about wanting to visit many times. Tim stopped at the bridge, handed me the basket of cranes, and told me to find the first crane he had ever given me (which he gave me about a month into us dating). I searched through the basket of cranes looking for the one labeled “#1.” I got a little anxious because I wasn’t sure it would be in the basket he had taken from my room–I had them hanging from my apartment ceiling over my bed and had moved twice, so there was no guarantee. After a little searching, I managed to find it, and Tim handed me a new crane and took the basket. Holding the first crane he had given me and the new one he had just placed in my hands, he asked me to unfold both of them. Once the flattened paper squares were unfolded and placed together, the seams of the paper spelled out the letters “MM” (what would be my new married initials) and a drawing of an engagement ring. I looked up to find Tim on his knee, where he proceeded to ask me to marry him. After a few moments, the fireworks show from UF’s homecoming weekend began in the distance and we watched it from the bridge. It was a perfect ending to the night.

I am an interior designer, so the venue was one of the most important things to me, after photography. I was looking for a simple and elegant space that had good architectural lines. I also wanted the color scheme of the venue to be neutral so my wedding colors would really pop! The Ribault Club had just that, and fell perfectly within our budget. The beautiful French doors let in so much light and the space was so bright and airy! It was the perfect backdrop for our wedding colors and details, and allowed us to have our entire wedding in one location, which was very important to us.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? We really wanted our wedding to feel like a big family celebration. Having it all in one large, historic, Southern plantation house was a great choice for us. We were able to take advantage of the outdoor area and beautiful trees for our ceremony and cocktail hour. We placed corn hole boards in the lawn for our guests during the cocktail hour and offered a popsicle cart as part of our hors d’oeuvres. Having the large venue for our guests to roam around made it feel like a family get-together.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our favorite detail of the wedding was definitely the food! We were able to express both of our love for food and fun flavors through our food truck dinner, the popsicle cart during cocktail hour, and the large dessert display. We really felt like we hit the jackpot with our food truck. The food was absolutely amazing and reflected our personalities so much better than a typical wedding meal. It was Tim’s idea, and at first, I thought he was crazy, but I finally came around when we met the owners of Funkadelic Food Truck in Jacksonville, Florida. We served a menu with four entrée options (a brisket burger, pork belly sandwich, gourmet pesto grilled cheese, or fish tacos) along with the choice of salad or french fries on the side. Our guests loved the food and are still talking about it to this day!

The dessert table was the star of the show at our wedding! I chose a simple, two-tiered, round, red velvet cake with cream cheese icing for Tim and I to cut. Surrounding that, we filled the dessert display with blueberry and cranberry orange scones, vanilla and peanut butter cookie cake pops, chocolate chip cookies, oatmeal raisin cookies, triple chocolate cookies, chocolate-covered strawberries, Hershey’s almond kisses, and butter mints. Everything was delicious and perfectly matched the color scheme of our wedding. The cake pops were dipped in white chocolate, placed on black and white paper straws, and sprinkled with gold edible rocks. There wasn’t a single dessert left on the table at the end of the night!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met during our first semester at the University of Florida, on September 27, 2011, to be exact. I was working in my design studio with the other students in my college when Tim stopped by to meet our mutual friend for football tickets. Initially, he planned to simply get the tickets and leave, but he got distracted and sat down by me. He stayed the entire night talking and “studying” while I worked on my project. In the early morning, he walked me to the bus stop and headed home. In the weeks that followed, there were several additional all-nighters and late night conversations in the studio before he asked me for my number. The rest seems like history. We were both immediately interested in each other and that seemed to be understood without a word being spoken. We’ve been together ever since.
When did y’all get married? July 24, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 125
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We chose to use the vows from our pastor, as they were very detailed and special to us.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Tim and I did five months of premarital counseling with our pastor prior to the wedding. We really felt this helped us prepare for marriage and understand each other a lot better. It became a stress-free time during the week when we could lay aside all planning and focus on ourselves and why we were getting married in the first place. Our relationship and love for each other is so much more important than the details of one day.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? The first way we saved money was choosing to host our wedding on a Friday instead of Saturday. This simple compromise cut our venue rental cost almost in half and saved us money on several other vendors. We also chose a venue that was not all-inclusive, allowing us to choose all of our vendors. This was the most beneficial when it came to food. We were able to hire a food truck to serve our food, which cut the catering cost per head in half and provided us a delicious alternative to typical wedding food. Some other small ways we saved money were purchasing our own alcohol, using a regular bakery instead of a wedding-only baker, and having girls nights to create the small details instead of purchasing them, because small costs added up quickly.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Walking down the aisle to the love of my life and seeing his eyes well up with tears was definitely the most memorable moment of the day. It reminded me of the purpose of the moment, and the reason behind all the planning for the nine months prior. It was all worth it in that split second.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Take it slow and remember to enjoy each moment. Be flexible to small changes and remember, no one besides you knows what things are “supposed” to look like, so if you forget a detail, no one will know! It’s so important to balance planning your wedding with growing your relationship in preparation for marriage. Take time away each week for a date night with no wedding talk, and remember to invest in each other.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We are enjoying newlywed life. In the near future, we are looking forward to decorating our new home and traveling to Europe. Traveling is definitely something we are both passionate about and we are looking forward to many trips together.

Photographer: Alex Michele Photography / Planner: Micheline Sullivan / Venue: The Ribault Club / Florist: A Happily Ever After Floral / Cake Baker: Publix Bakery / Caterer: Funkadelic Food Truck / Rentals: Luxe Party Rentals / Lighting and DJ: Generation Y Entertainment / Cake Topper: Cake Topper Bliss / Bride’s Gown: Mori Lee by Madeline Gardner / Bride’s Veil: Blanca Veils / Bride’s Earrings: “Bella Paisley Drop Earrings” in Gold by ILY / Hair and Makeup: Studio Bride / Bride’s Shoes: “Fay 1” by Lulu’s / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Style 1124 in Champagne by Bill Levkoff / Menswear: “Black by Vera Wang / Popsicles: Guanabana Artisan Ice Pops

lisa Written with love by Lisa
3 Comments
  1. avatar Emily reply

    I have a question – when you have a food truck at your wedding, do the guests have to stand in line to get their food? Or is is served to them? I’m thinking about a food truck for my wedding but I’m curious about logistics.

    • avatar Monique reply

      Hi Emily!

    • avatar Monique reply

      Hi Emily!
      My other comment didn’t go through but to answer your question: our DJ hosted a game to dismiss the guests by table and they were served in groups. It did take a little bit for the guests to all eat but once they had food in their mouth they totally forgot how long it took to get it. For 140 guests it was around an hour since the food was made to order. Typically a buffet line would take somewhat near the same amount of time. If you have any other questions feel free to email me. I would be happy to help! (Riles.monique@gmail.com)

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

Reply to:
close

With the help of gorgeous blooms (like those amazing Juliet rose garlands!) from Thistle Floral Design, Hannah and her mama took the completely blank canvas of The Filter Building and created a beautiful reception. They collected vintage milk glass for unique centerpieces, added glittering gold details, and even tossed in a few tiny nods to Hannah and Eric’s Parisian proposal. (It involves the famous “Love Lock” bridge and her family — you won’t want to miss it!) While their decor may be “fancy,” they decided to just go with the good stuff when it came to their dinner: fried chicken, pot roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese, biscuits, and cornbread, oh my! I’m sure guests left with a full heart and a full belly!

Thanks to Ben Q Photography for sharing Hannah and Eric’s wedding day with us!

Last June, my mom and I were visiting my sister in Paris, France. My dad flew in for the last week that we were there, and on his first day, we went to do a little sightseeing. On our way to lunch, we were walking past the famous “Love Lock” bridge where couples put padlocks with their names written on them on the railing and throw the keys into the Seine. While my family wrote their names on their padlocks, I saw Eric standing on the other side of the bridge (looking dapper as ever, I might add!). I walked over to him, and he immediately got down on one knee, said some wonderful things, and asked me to be his wife. Not only was this the best surprise (EVER!), but we also got to spend the next week exploring Paris together to kick off our engagement!

When searching for my gown, the stylist pulled a Watters gown that fit most of my criteria–it was a simple, strapless, taffeta gown with a sweetheart neckline and hidden pockets. I added a pearl and lace belt and faux buttons all the way down the back of the dress. By the end of it, I had combined all of the elements from the photos I’d collected to create a dress that was unique and perfect for me!

Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My mom monogrammed our wedding date in blue onto a piece of Eric’s late grandmother’s wedding dress, and then sewed it into the hem of my wedding gown (old, borrowed, and blue!). She also his late grandfather’s wedding tux to make Eric a handkerchief. My something new was my Christian Louboutin wedding shoes!

I walked down the aisle to the Bridal Chorus and we walked out to Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March.” They fit perfectly with the venue and gave us the perfect traditional church wedding that we were going for. For our first dance, we danced to a cover of Queen’s “You’re My Best Friend” by The Once. Eric loves classic rock and I’m more of an acoustic-and-coffee-house type of person, so this song was perfect for us.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Our first look was our most memorable moment. At that point, our adrenaline had kicked into full gear and the excited nerves had set in! It was so nice to be able to just get away from everything and see each other before the biggest moment of our lives. We both agree that we had never felt happier than at that very moment. It was something we will never forget.

What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We saved money by not hiring a wedding planner. I did all of the searching, planning, budgeting, and timelines on my own. My mom is an incredibly creative person, so she was my partner-in-crime as far as the decorations and centerpieces went. Between us and her best friend, who was our day-of coordinator, we had every minute and detail planned! We also saved money by doing all of the set-up, decorating, and clean-up by ourselves.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? Each centerpiece at the reception was made up of different clusters of vintage milk glass that my mom and I found during the months leading up to the wedding. Another Southern aspect of our wedding was the food. We opted out of having “fancy” food and decided to just go with the good stuff–fried chicken, pot roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese, biscuits, and cornbread!

Rather than doing one large wedding cake, we had five different cakes displayed on a wooden farm table. The cakes each incorporated different aspects of the details of our reception–a hand-painted Rifle Paper Co.-inspired design, gold lettering, lace and satin covered buttons, and milk glass hobnob, all topped with fresh flowers. They were each on top of pastel cake stands and were surrounded by glass milk vases and bowls filled with hand-painted macarons, a nod to our French engagement.

Don’t miss Hannah and Eric’s wedding film by Turquoise Video Productions below!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met at a fraternity party during our sophomore year at the University of Arkansas. During our junior year, we randomly ran into each other in New Orleans when Arkansas was playing in the Sugar Bowl. We spent the night hopping between different places on Bourbon Street, and the rest is history!
When did y’all get married? February 21, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 200
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We wanted a traditional church wedding, so we chose Perkins Chapel on the SMU campus for our ceremony. We fell in love with the pretty pews, hardwood floors, shutters, and white and gold detailing of the chapel. We also loved the fact that they have an in-house organist! For our reception venue, we chose the Filter Building on White Rock Lake. I loved the overall feel of the building–the exposed brick, the steel beams, and the cafe lights strung outside on the lakeside patio. The best thing about the venue was that it was a completely blank canvas!
Did you pull any wedding inspiration from memories you have together? Tell us about it! Since Paris will now always have a special place in our hearts, we wanted to include a few tiny Parisian details in the reception, like the macarons on the cake table. We also found an Eiffel Tower ring holder that we used to take photos of our wedding bands on.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t strive for perfection. There is so much unnecessary pressure placed on your wedding day–to be in perfect shape, to find the perfect dress and tux, to have the perfect venue, and have every tiny detail of the day be absolutely PERFECT. Well, it’s not going to be! Things are going to go wrong, but those things end up being the fun details of your wedding story. Embrace the obstacles that come up along the way, because at the end of the day, you get to spend the rest of your lives together, and that is the best part.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? Since the wedding, I have joined Eric in Philadelphia. We miss our families, Texas, and all things Southern in general, but we are loving this phase of our life as newlyweds in the Northeast!

Photographer: Ben Q Photography / Videographer: Turquoise Video Productions / Ceremony Venue: Perkins Chapel / Reception Venue: The Filter Building / Florist: Thistle Floral Design / Cake Baker: Layered Bake Shop / Caterer: Celebration Restaurant / Rentals: Posh Couture Rentals / Lighting: Absolute Entertainment / Band: The Dan Quinn Band / Paper Products: Paper Source / Bride’s Gown: Watters / Bride’s Accessories: Stardust Celebrations / Hair and Makeup: Tracy Melton Artistry / Bride’s Shoes: Christian Louboutin / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Mori Lee / Groom’s Attire: Hugo Boss / Groomsmen Attire: Calvin Klein

marissa Written with love by Marissa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Ashton Dreyer reply

    The Happily Ever After sign behind their Sweet Heart table is adorable. Adding it to my wedding DIY list!

  2. avatar Tracy Melton Dallas Hair Styling & Makeup Artistry | Hannah’s Wedding Day reply

    […] Here is the link to the Southern Weddings post if you want to stop by there too:  http://southernweddings.com/2015/08/11/rifle-paper-co-wedding-by-ben-q/ […]

  3. avatar Stacy reply

    can you give me a resource for the wonderful, large chalboard?

  4. avatar Modern Preppy Wedding in Black, Gold, and Emerald with Mixed Prints! | Hey Wedding Lady reply

    […] Photography by Ben Q Photography, Floral Design by Thistle Floral Design via Southern Weddings […]

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

Reply to:
close

Many of us girls dream about our wedding day for years, myself included! I personally always knew I’d wear the pearl bracelet my grandmother wore on her wedding day. Most grooms, on the other hand, may not have prepared for quite so long. :) However, it’s so important to view wedding planning as a preparation for your marriage, so sharing in decision-making is a great way to get your beau involved. Today’s sweet couple is a wonderful example of this in practice. Amy dreamed of a romantic, timeless, and luxurious-feeling wedding day, so she and her groom, Gabe, planned their special day at The Governor Thomas Bennet House. They chose to make decisions together and compromise often so that they both were happy with the details of their wedding, like their heartfelt ceremony and brightly-colored blooms. Amy said “It is through shared decision-making and communication that a strong marriage is built.” I could not agree more!

Big hugs to Kelly Dillon for sharing this Charleston wedding with us!

Gabe and I met in January 2012 at Trio, one of our favorite spots in downtown Charleston. We were there with a group of mutual friends and started talking, and then danced together the rest of the night. We went on our first date the next day and have been together ever since. After dating for eight months, I got an opportunity to teach in South Korea for a year. This was something I had always wanted to do, but I knew it would be hard on our relationship. Gabe was really supportive and wanted me to take advantage of this opportunity. We Skyped almost every day, and both feel that our relationship grew stronger during this time, even though we were half a world apart.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I tried on so many different dresses from almost every shop in Charleston. I wasn’t sure what kind of dress I wanted at first, but finally decided that I wanted a big princess dress with beading, lace, and some sparkle. I tried on a Justin Alexander dress at The Bridal House of Charleston, and loved the fullness of the skirt, the beautiful underlay of delicate lace, and the beadwork on the bodice. I decided to switch the high neckline to a sweetheart neckline, and added a tulle sash with a sparkly embellishment.

For the flowers, I chose various shades of pink with accents of gold for the vases and candle holders. The flowers were a mix of coral, blush, and bright pink peonies. We also included accents of dusty miller, pink spray roses, and white hydrangea. I loved the lush, summery feel of the flowers.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did not write our own vows, but we had a family friend be our officiant. She has known me since I was a baby, and it was very special that she was the one to marry us.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? My grandmother gave a heartfelt blessing at the start of the ceremony. She is a very special person in my life, and it meant a lot to have her be a part of the ceremony.

We fell in love with The Governor Thomas Bennett house because of its old Southern charm and history. It was built in 1825 and has been completely restored and beautifully furnished with period pieces. I was immediately enamored with the free-standing staircase, the only one of its kind in Charleston. We also loved the Southern feel of the large live oak tree that spread over the garden where the ceremony would be held. Once we saw the house, it was an easy choice. I didn’t want to get married anywhere else.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I wanted the wedding to have a romantic, timeless, and luxurious feel. To get that feel, we hung a chandelier from the live oak near the ceremony site and three chandeliers in the reception tent. This added so much to the old Southern charm of our venue.

Tell us all about the proposal! We got engaged at the end of January 2014. Gabe is a pilot in the Air Force, and he had just gotten back from a two-month deployment. It was so exciting to be back together after what felt like forever. The day we got engaged was unseasonably warm for January, so we decided to take a walk on the beach at Sullivan’s Island. We walked all the way down to the point where you can see Fort Sumter. He stopped, turned to me, and said, “A lot of amazing history has happened in this spot, and I’m excited to make more amazing history with you. I love you so much. You are the best thing that has ever happened to me.” He then got down on one knee and asked, “Will you marry me?” It was a very sweet moment. I was so happy a bystander got a picture of the moment we got engaged.
When did y’all get married? June 6, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 100
Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We decided not to do a first look. Gabe and I didn’t want to lose the excitement of seeing each other for the first time at the altar, and we love the tradition of waiting. We were very happy with our decision.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. We chose to use traditional songs for the ceremony: the bridal party walked down the aisle to Pachelbel’s “Canon in D” and I entered to “Here Comes the Bride.” For the first dance, Gabe and I danced to “Thinking Out Loud” by Ed Sheeran, which has been our song since it came out. My dad and I danced to “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwo’ole. This was special for us because Gabe and I are moving to Hawaii at the end of August, since he is being transferred to an Air Force base in Honolulu.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My dad lent me a blue diamond ring that is a family heirloom, and I wore my sister’s veil. My dress and shoes were new.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? We made many decisions together and compromised to make sure we were both happy with each aspect of the wedding. It is through this shared decision-making and communication that a strong marriage is built.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We shared some rental items with the wedding that was held the night before.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Gabe said his most memorable moment was seeing me walk down the aisle. I would have to say my most memorable moment was our first dance, and walking down the aisle and seeing Gabe with tears in his eyes. It was also so much fun getting ready with my beautiful bridesmaids in the gorgeous house.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We are moving to Hawaii and are hoping to have many adventures there!

Photographer: Kelly Dillon / Videographer: George Street Photo / Planner: Cory Winn Lambert / Venue: The Governor Thomas Bennett House / Florist: Branch Design Studio / Cake Baker: Artistic Cakes by Linda / Caterer: Hamby Catering / Rentals: EventHaus Rentals / Lighting: Thomas Smith / DJ: Epic Charleston / Bride’s Gown: Justin Alexander / Menswear and Bride’s Jewelry: Ralph Lauren / Hair and Makeup: Lashes and Lace / Bride’s Shoes: Betsy Johnson / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Mori Lee

marissa Written with love by Marissa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Charleston Wedding Videographer reply

    Absolutely gorgeous! The Thomas Bennett House is an amazing venue!

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

Reply to:
close
Top