Dianna + Garjae put together a wedding full of crafty pastel details that looks plenty thorough, thoughtful and laid back. We are just gaga over Dianna’s custom-designed ruffled dress, the fun balloons that her bridal party carried throughout the day, and the streamers lining the reception space with a festive air. Among the more obvious details, though, are also unique and subtle ones. Those place settings are lovely with their ribbon ties, but look closer and you’ll see that they’re resting on open books! I adore how thoughtfully those settings were put together and can’t imagine a prettier place to set some Southern comfort food on. Speaking of Southern comfort food, these newlyweds chose to hire Charlottesville’s popular donut truck for dessert! Now that’s a reception I’d love to attend! Big thanks to Megan W for sharing!
Describe the proposal. Far from typical. We were headed out of town for what I thought was a post-graduation trip for Garjae. While we were in the car, Garjae gave me a gift he picked up while he was in Porto. It was a love keepsake box, but when I went to open it there was nothing in it. I was expecting something to be inside it — don’t get me wrong, it was a pretty box, but it was sort of weird to get a box with nothing in it. He then, sort of absentmindedly, asked me to get him a tissue out the glove compartment. When I opened it, all I saw was this ring box. I remember asking him what it was, but after that, everything he said was almost like background noise, I spent the better part of his proposal crying and saying yes in between sobs.
Oh the anticipation! I love this photo for it. According to Dianna, the ceremony was the most memorable part of the day. “It was the first time that day when I was able to just soak everything in and enjoy the occasion. When the music started to play, I was just so calm, looking forward to finally being married to my best friend.”
I love this idea!! Tossing felted poms right after the “I do’s” makes the moment so joyful and fun.
Finding my dress was seriously a process. After being to over 5 or 6 dress shops, I would find dresses that were nice but only parts of which I liked, never the whole dress. It didn’t matter who the designer was, I always felt like I was searching for something more and I just wasn’t getting what I was looking for. In the end, I decided to reach out to a local atelier in Baltimore. After meeting Jill and Sara, I never looked back. They looked at my inspiration photos, we discussed what I was looking for, and they came up with an absolute perfect dress to fit my personality. Deciding that a pre-designed dress wasn’t for me and reaching out to Jill and Sara was the best decision I ever made.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert: I got the idea for our cake from an I Am Baker design. The cake was covered with a rose pattern from top to bottom. It was a lemon cake with blackberry and raspberry filling and a cream cheese frosting. We also served little petit fours that said “eat me” and apple cider donuts from a popular doughnut truck in Charlottesville.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? The food. I’m from St. Louis (my family is originally from Arkansas) and Garjae is from North Carolina. We love comfort food, which we consider uncomplicated, incredibly rich and delicious. Having comfort food was an obvious choice for us. We had a tea and biscuit table during the cocktail hour and for dinner we served roasted chicken with mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, asparagus, and my favorite snack: corn bread.
How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. Garjae and I met in college. We’ve been together since the beginning of our freshman year.
In what month did you get married? June 2012
How many guests attended your wedding? 70
Did you decide to do a “first look”? We decided against it. Garjae didn’t want to see me before (he’s big on tradition) and I could really care less either way. I have to say it was great seeing his face when he first saw me, classic.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We chose three readings from the Bible: Ruth 1:16-17, 1 Corinthians 13:1-13, and Mark 10:6-9, 13-16.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. We used two songs for walking down the aisle: “Turning Page” by Sleeping at Last and “Sweetest Thing” by Lauryn Hill. Our first dance was to Etta Jame’s “At Last.”
Describe your wedding flowers: We chose roses, peonies, and lamb’s ear. During the ceremony we had baby’s breath. I wanted something classic and romantic.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? My dress. I really believe if you’re going to spend money on anything it should be attire and photography. Megan wasn’t exactly a splurge because we budgeted for her. I definitely broke some rules on my dress though and I don’t regret it at all. It was completely worth it. My dress was absolutely gorgeous and fit and reflected me perfectly.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our favorite detail was probably our invitations and save the dates. They were a labor of love from start to finish but came out absolutely perfect and really set the tone for our guests.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? If you plan on doing a lot of crafts for your wedding, don’t be afraid to ask for help. You will save yourself a lot of headaches and likely be able to finish all the projects you start. Creating the decor for your wedding is definitely worth the effort, but it’s not worth losing your sanity trying to do it alone. Enlist your friends and family to help. You’ll come to cherish the help once it’s all over.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We’re just working to build a life together. We look forward to starting a family, finding and designing our first home and also furthering our professional goals.