Bright coral pink is one of those colors that exudes cheerfulness, and when I read Nichole and Ricky’s equally charming interview, I knew they made the perfect color scheme choice for their wedding! After enduring a long-distance relationship and getting engaged in the town where they met, this sweet couple spent a year and a half planning their gorgeous Historic Cedarwood wedding. All of their hard work resulted in a wedding that struck the perfect balance between heartfelt, emotional moments and fun, playful details. Does it get much better than that?
Big thanks to Kristyn Hogan for sharing Nichole and Ricky’s beautiful day with us!
I had spent about a month going to several wedding boutiques pre-shopping in Houston before my mom came into town for Thanksgiving. I wanted to make sure that I had a few dresses picked out to help make the shopping really easy. However, I couldn’t seem to find one that made me feel like it was the one and I was really stressing out, not to mention that all of my girls lived in other states, so I was really going at this alone. Finally, my parents came to town for the holiday and my mom and I set out looking for the dress. I tried on several at the first boutique and even though my mom already had tears flowing since we were finally getting to have our mother-daughter experience, I still wasn’t finding the one that felt right for me. When we went to the next boutique, we had fun picking out dresses that I wouldn’t normally choose for myself. Then I came across this one that I just fell in love with. I put it on and knew it was the dress. We were both crying and just so excited that this was it. We bought the dress, canceled the rest of the appointments, and then went out to celebrate since we still had the rest of the day with each other.
Did you decide to do a “first look”?
I actually talked to my photographer and she said it was great for pictures, so I was more than excited to include this in our day. A month before my wedding, one of my best friends got married and did a first look. All of the girls begged to sneak a peek but not be seen. Wow–we were all in tears over the amount of emotion that they both had, and I couldn’t wait to have the same experience with my soon-to-be husband. Needless to say, we did!
What a sweet moment! I love the emotion in this picture, including all of the smiling guests in the background!
Did you write your own vows?
We really wanted to, but we were so nervous that we would be too overcome with emotion and unable to make it through them. We were fortunate to have a wonderful officiant, who helped us plan our ceremony and gave us the opportunity to make it ours. The part that stood out to me the most was the preface to the vows. “I want remind us all of what a vow is. A vow is a solemn promise, a pledge that binds. A commitment of heart, mind, soul and body. It is tenacious, persistent and even stubborn in the face of challenges. These are your vows. It is one of life’s greatest gifts, to give and receive such a commitment. Understanding these things about your vows causes us to understand that these are not mere words and so we listen in great awe and reverence as you make these promises to each other.”
When I was initially conceptualizing the wedding, I fell in love with the idea of an outdoor ceremony, but wanted to make sure that we had rustic Southern charm as well. Since I am from Tennessee, we wanted to have the wedding in Nashville to give our guests the opportunity to experience this amazing city we fell in love with. Cedarwood was perfect with its natural meadow, outdoor garden, front lawn with a swing and chandelier, historic home, and beautiful landscape, so I had many different areas to utilize. We had our wedding ceremony in the meadow with the altar covered with beautiful flowers and the rustic barn in the background. The cocktail hour was held in the front of the house on the lawn. It reminded me of something out of Gone With the Wind. Our reception was held on the wrap-around terrace, which was open and surrounded by the beautiful landscape and decor.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding?
I would have to say Cedarwood Weddings. They walked me through everything. I really had no idea what I was doing and I relied on Cedarwood to point me in the right direction. The staff was fantastic. We were lucky enough to have started planning far enough in advance that we were able to book all the vendors that Cedarwood considered the best of the best. It all showed the day of the wedding, with every vendor and staff member. Everything went so smoothly and felt perfect. We were able to enjoy every moment.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert.
I completely loved our cake. I was the bride that was seated and eating a full plate while everyone was dancing. It was a round, three-tiered smooth-edged design with peach-melon colored icing, small lace detailing, and one big coral charm peony on top of a mint cake stand. All tiers were strawberry marble cake with white chocolate cream cheese filling and icing. I am so happy that we had some left over so I can have it over and over again. We also had a cookie bar setup. These cookies are the ones the aunts brought. They were displayed on various platters and cake stands and were a huge hit!
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story.
I am originally from Tennessee and moved north for school and my career. While working at Tweenbrands in Columbus, Ohio, I met a really great group of girlfriends that had all gone to Ohio University together. We all hung out and eventually started going to their boyfriends’ softball games, which is when I started to hang out with Ricky. We would all go out after the games and hang out, eating pizza and fries on Thursday nights, and we continued meeting up through the weekend. I could really tell that Ricky and I had a lot in common. We were both going through art school and it was so easy to talk and relate to him. We became a couple just a few months before he was offered an amazing job in Houston, TX. We both felt it was the right thing for him to do and we continued to make the relationship work. After a very long two years of long-distance calls and flights back and forth, we both felt like we needed to be together. I left my job and moved to Houston for us and two years later, we were finally engaged.
Tell us all about the proposal!
It was so cute! We traveled back to Ohio and I had already been sick for a week but I was being a trooper. We ran around all day getting ready for a Halloween party that night and stopping at all our favorite places in Columbus, where we met. Then, in the parking lot behind our favorite coffee house, he started to complain about his leg hurting. I offered him some Aleve, but he said he would be fine. We got into the car when Ricky started freaking out about his leg really hurting. He told me to stop and let him get out to stretch. I rolled down the window to see how he was doing and he told me he needed me to get out and help him (by the way, he was kneeling in a puddle). I got out, really confused since he never complains about pulled muscles, and there he was, on one knee (still in the puddle), asking me if I would marry him. Then, he opened the box and the ring fell out and rolled under the car. He politely asked me to “hold on a sec” while he fetched it and I was tearing up. It was the cutest thing and I was so happy that I forgot to say yes till we got back in the car! Eventually, he did get his answer.
When did y’all get married?
May 26, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding?
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them.
I really wanted to use some “not so typical” music during our ceremony. Working with our guitar/violin duo, we were able to add some Beatles songs that keep the feeling more current. We incorporated “In My Life” for the seating of the guests and “All You Need is Love” for the recessional to kick off the celebration! Ricky had this great idea that at the end of the reception, we have the DJ play “Time of My Life” from the Dirty Dancing soundtrack as if it was the last song. Then, we surprised our guests with “One More Time” by Daft Punk for one last chance to dance. It was so much fun!!
Describe your wedding flowers.
Cedarwood did an amazing job with the flowers. I provided a picture I had seen online of an arrangement with many different types of natural textures and colors that I wanted to replicate. I wanted to make sure that we were making an effort to not be matchy-matchy and focus on various shades of our colors: light pinks, melon, and ivory. They did a custom-designed bouquet using cabbage roses, coral charm peonies, light peach/pink stock, light pink spray roses, dusty miller, seeded eucalyptus, and ranunculus. It was hand-tied with burlap and a band of material used for my dress sash around the middle. We switched the color variations for the bridesmaids so the bouquets would pop against their papaya J.Crew dresses, and tied each with a ribbon to match my sash as well. They were beautiful! The groom’s boutonniere was a light peach spray rose and seeded eucalyptus to match my bouquet, tied with twine. The groomsmen boutonnieres were similar, but in a lighter shade.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was:
I have a few that really stood out for me. First, I made all the paper goods, from the save the dates, to the large logo sign used for the favor wall and photo booth, to the guest book. I really enjoyed taking the time to make sure every little detail was consistent with our Nashville wedding, with the large bright flowers and the NP + RK theme. Ricky was always there helping me get all the tiny crafts completed, bless his heart. Second, I decided to do white Wayfarer Sunglasses with our “NP + RK” logo as our favors. I thought it would make great photos and it was totally appropriate with the outside wedding venue. Third, there is a family tradition on my husband’s side that the women of the family make these amazing little cookies for weddings. They are insanely good. RK’s aunts made the drive all the way down from Pittsburgh with the cookies in tow for our wedding. It really meant a lot that his family would take so much time to make all of them. There were so many different kinds of cookies and the table never seemed to be bare since the staff had enough to keep it stocked all night. I purchased kraft favor bags so our guests could take some of their favorite ones home with them. Somehow I still ended up taking plenty to snack on back home. Fourth, my dad had this amazing idea to incorporate a Chinese wishing lantern into the wedding, which I thought would be a unique thing to do as a sign of our unity. It was really beautiful to release the lantern into the air with all of our family and friends watching as it soared into the night sky.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The biggest challenge I faced was being so far away from everything, including my family, friends, and the venue. I did a lot on my own and had to utilize technology as much as possible with FaceTime and sending photos. I had a lot of support from my parents during the planning process. They really were amazing. We also had our initial design meeting at Cedarwood to cover every detail of the wedding. It was outstanding and really helped me decide what direction to go with my wedding.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day?
My most memorable moment would have to be at the ceremony, standing there with Ricky, announcing to everyone that we were forever joined as husband and wife. I remember, even through my nerves, taking a moment to look at everyone that had traveled so far to be there for us, and knowing that others so wanted to be there and couldn’t make it. It really touched our hearts.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding?
Try not to rush it. I had about a year and a half engagement. I really feel like it’s worth taking the time if you can. I would also suggest, if your venue doesn’t offer it, to get a wedding planner, even if it’s just for the day of your wedding. It was great to not have to worry about anything the day of and to enjoy all the hard work I put into creating the special day with everyone we love.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life?
We are looking to save money and start looking for a house. We are ready to settle down and begin the rest of our lives together.
Photographer: Kristyn Hogan | Planner: Cedarwood Weddings – Linda Wright, Kortni Wells, and Erika Hoelscher | Ceremony Venue: The Historic Cedarwood – Cedarwood Weddings | Reception Venue: The Historic Cedarwood – Cedarwood Weddings | Florist: Cedarwood Weddings – Karen Wright | Wedding Cake: Patty Cakes | Caterer: Chef Christopher’s Catering | Band: Jace Aaron Entertainment | Bride’s Gown: Watters, Belmont Style, Bride re-designed sash | Paper Products: Bride self-designed and made, NP+RK Designs | Bride’s Hair Accessories/Jewelry: Anthropologie (Hair Accessory), Bride’s Own (Jewelry) | Bridesmaids’ Hair Accessories/Jewelry: Bride made (Hair Accessory), Bride re-designed (Jewelry) | Hair Stylist for Bride, Mother of the Bride, and Mother of the Groom: Studio BBC Salon | Hair Stylist for Bridesmaids and Flower Girl: Leslie Dockery of On Broadway Hair Salon and Lynnell Randolph Ferguson | Makeup Artist: Studio BBC Salon | Bride’s Shoes: Lucky Brand light mint ballet flats | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: J. Crew Miranda Dress in Cotton Candy – Sweet Papaya | Groom’s Attire: Jos. A. Bank Havana Destination Suit | Groomsmen Attire: Jos. A. Bank Havana Destination Suit
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