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Lisa emailed me before this post to tell me that this one was “definitely a Marissa wedding.” She sure knows me well! I’m pretty sure I often dream in pale pink and gold, and Lacy and JD’s sweet day would fit right in. While I was not familiar with Chateau Cocomar, I now think a trip to Houston to admire it in person is in order. I completely agree with Lacy that it’s the perfect fairy tale setting–those archways, those gold accents, that amazing architectural detail in their exit photo from Archetype… need I go on? Of course, while I’m kind of obsessing over their details, I can’t help but stop and think about what a wonderful expression of hospitality and love their wedding was. Lacy brought me right back to my own wedding day with her nostalgic recount of the memories that stuck with her: “I’ll never forget the way the roses smelled, how beautiful my bridesmaids looked, my grandmother kissing me on the cheek, my mom’s face as I was walking down the aisle, or the way it felt to finally say ‘I do.’”

Thanks so much to Archetype for sharing this gorgeous day with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I had always imagined going dress shopping with my mom and sisters and grandma, walking out in the perfect dress, and everyone shrieking and crying tears of joy. But, that’s not my dress story. One of my bridesmaids was in town shortly after I got engaged, and we were wandering around the mall. She was really excited and kept insisting we look at wedding dresses, but since I had no intention of buying anything, I wasn’t interested in looking just yet. I knew exactly what style I wanted though, so I begrudgingly agreed to go look, just to show her what kind of dress I was interested in. I showed her one that was exactly what I had envisioned: ball gown, lace bodice, full tulle skirt, timelessly beautiful. She insisted I try it on and ran to get a stylist. I stepped into it, and it was love at first sight. First and only dress I tried on–I bought it and didn’t regret it for a second!

Even though I wanted everything about our wedding to be very traditional, we decided to do a first look. I knew how crazy and busy the wedding day becomes, and how the bride and groom are pulled in so many different directions. Another bride told me that her biggest regret from her wedding day was that she spent the whole day apart from her husband, so I wanted us to have some time that was just for us, and to be able to share an intimate moment without it being on display for all our guests.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? It all went by so quickly, and so much of it is a blur. But some moments, I remember so clearly. I’ll never forget the way the roses smelled, how beautiful my bridesmaids looked, my grandmother kissing me on the cheek, my mom’s face as I was walking down the aisle, or the way it felt to finally say “I do.”

I was in love with our venue from the moment I stepped through the door. It was the perfect fairy tale setting for our wedding, and everything I had ever dreamed of. The pictures speak for themselves!

Our flowers were unbelievably beautiful! We used roses, garden roses, hydrangeas, and spray roses in ivory, pale pinks, and sand. Our arrangements were so full and lush–it made for the ultimate romantic, fairy tale setting. The whole place smelled like roses!

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Hire a wedding coordinator. I cannot imagine planning our wedding without one, especially on the day-of! Our coordinator was amazing. On the wedding day, I really could relax and enjoy spending the day with my girls and my husband. I didn’t have to worry about what was going on with the set up or the vendors, and if there was ever a problem, I never knew it!

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our sparkler send off! From beautiful pictures of other couples’ grand exits, I knew that sparkers were the only choice for us. What I hadn’t expected was how magical and romantic it would feel to walk out of our reception surrounded by a sea of glittery lights!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. JD and I met at law school orientation. Since neither of us was into the icebreakers or working a crowd, we gravitated toward each other and became instant friends. I never imagined that five years later, we’d be getting married. It was only later that I learned that after our first day of orientation, his mom asked him if he had met any girls–his response: “Just one.”
Tell us all about the proposal! JD proposed while we were vacationing in Breckenridge, Colorado over the Fourth of July weekend. We were watching the town fireworks show from the balcony of our condo and sipping champagne. He slipped the ring into my champagne glass and then got down on one knee and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him.
When did y’all get married? October 18, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 85
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Relinquishing control! I tried to take care of everything myself initially, but ultimately, I couldn’t do it all myself. I am so grateful for all the help from my mother, mother-in-law, bridesmaids, and coordinator. I couldn’t have done it without them!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are most looking forward to sharing new adventures and exploring the world together! We recently moved to Denver and bought our first house.

Photographer: Archetype / Venue and Planner: Chateau Cocomar / Florist: Blooming Gallery / Cake Baker: Who Made the Cake / Caterer: Cordua / Rentals: Swift + Co. / Band: NiteBeat Band / Paper Products: Atelier du Papier / Bride’s Gown: “Mila” by Hayley Paige / Hair and Makeup: Makeup Texas / Bride’s Shoes: “Fayme” by Jimmy Choo / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “6613” by After Six / Menswear: Vera Wang / Transportation: Rolls Royce

marissa Written with love by Marissa
12 Comments
  1. avatar Lisa reply

    WOW! What a gorgeous couple, and an incredible venue!!

  2. avatar Esme Stewart reply

    What a stunning chic and sophisticated wedding. The chunky reception chairs, the favour pyramid, the beautiful dresses were all absolutely delightful. Thank you for sharing your special day.

  3. avatar Terilyn & Koby – Archetype reply

    Such an honor to work with Lacy & JD! Lacy is truly a girl after my own heart! Thank you for the feature, Southern Weddings!! xo

  4. avatar Jane reply

    So beautiful. Wish I could have been there! ;)

  5. avatar CourtneyG reply

    I love the pink bridesmaids robes. Do you know where they were purchased?

  6. avatar Linda Griggs reply

    So glad we got to share this evening with you. You are such a beautiful bride. So glad to see what you have become. Love you.

  7. avatar Tuyet reply

    Hi! I love the tall centerpieces! Can you please let me know where I can find the centerpiece holder? thanks!

  8. avatar Rachel Nordgren reply

    “Just one.” AHH! That’s the most precious thing I’ve read all day! Love it!

  9. avatar Mary reply

    Hi! I love everything about the decor! Very elegant and romantic. Can you please let me know what kind of table linen was used (polyester or satin) and the color? It looks like blush or ivory but I’m not certain. Appreciate your help!

  10. avatar Rachelle reply

    Hello! I love everything about your wedding especially the bridesmaids dresses!!! I am currently planning my own wedding and I am trying to get the right color dresses for my girls. Do you mind letting me know what color specifically the bridesmaids dresses are off the website? I’m thinking either “blush” or “rose” thanks in advance!!!

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Out of everything that is magical about the South, we believe that the feelings of hospitality, graciousness, and belonging are what captivate people the most. We adore biscuits, sweet tea, and groom’s cakes, there’s no denying that, but even without a single one of those things, a wedding can be characteristically Southern simply by the way people feel as soon as they walk through the venue doors. Andrea summed it up perfectly when she described her and Erick’s Nashville wedding: “We had people from all over the world, most of whom did not know one another. We ate, drank, danced, celebrated, and felt like family for one night. I’m so thankful that the South I know is filled with a spirit of sharing life stories and experiences, mutual acceptance of differences, blended families of relatives and friends, dancing, delicious food, and fun.”

We’re so glad that Kristin Sweeting shared Andrea and Erick’s meaningful day with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. My younger sister went with me to the White Room on a Saturday, without an appointment. We looked through every rack and on the last one, I found the dress. I instantly knew it was the one I wanted, and begged the lady there to let me have a dressing room for a very brief try-on, but everything was booked. Serendipitously, someone called and canceled their appointment at that exact time. I got to try on the dress and fell in love, but the neckline went down to my belly button and I’m a little more modest. I bought it anyway, along with some extra fabric to fill in the neckline. When the dress came in, it came without the fabric. The White Room assured me we could get it in time, so I waited. Luckily, they have the best seamstress in the world, Tu Holman–she only had three weeks to take the dress in several inches, hem the bottom, replace beads, and create a new neckline. Five days before the wedding, my mom and I went to pick up the dress, and she had done beautiful work, but it just wasn’t what I had envisioned. My sister and best friend went back with me three days later and we stayed past midnight at the seamstress’ house until we had the top right. I’m so thankful for Tu and her insistence that we get the dress right, no matter how long it took, because on my wedding day, it was perfect and I loved wearing it.

There was an amazing Southern spirit at our wedding. We had people from all over the world, most of whom did not know one another. We ate, drank, danced, celebrated, and felt like family for one night. I’m so thankful that the South I know is filled with a spirit of sharing life stories and experiences, mutual acceptance of differences, blended families of relatives and friends, dancing, delicious food, and fun.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? It was the only place we could agree on! I liked all the small, rustic, restaurant venues, and Erick liked all the big, industrial venues. We walked away from touring Sambuca and both said, “We could get married there.” It was perfect and we love that we can go back there for dinner every year on our anniversary.

When I was in Rwanda, I worked for Monique Lasdosz (Nanny, as we all call her) at the organization Widow’s Might. She started a craft workshop, along with several other business startups, for the widows and orphans of the 1994 genocide. We employed the craftspeople to make place card holders, drink stirrers, and our cake topper. Along with Nanny’s presence at our wedding, these details were extremely special because of the significance of our meeting and our heart for Africa.

We had a two-layer Italian cream cake with raspberry filling, ivory fondant, and gold art deco accents. The topper was intertwining giraffes made my artists at a craft workshop in Rwanda.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Erick is Rwandan, and ten years ago, I spent a summer working in Rwanda. The woman I worked for, Monique (Nanny) was good friends with Erick. She introduced us (with Erick’s girlfriend sitting next to him) and we had an instant connection. Lucky for me, the girlfriend was on her way out, so Erick and I hung out for the rest of my stay, but knew it wasn’t likely we could make a relationship work. We kept in touch and literally chased each other around the world. I started traveling around the world with the intent to go back to Africa, and Erick moved to the States. I returned from my trip six months later, and Erick’s job moved him to Guiana. A few years later, he moved back to the US and came to Nashville (where my boyfriend was sitting next to me). A few years and a breakup after that, we decided we had to make a relationship work. We did two years long distance between Nashville and Boston before Erick made the move South. We were soon engaged in October 2013 and married on October 18, 2014.
Tell us all about the proposal! Erick and I had been talking about getting engaged all summer. However, in September, my older sister got engaged, which was a welcome surprise to the whole family. Their engagement made our plans a little less immediate in every one else’s eyes. One day in October, Erick suggested “we spend the whole day together.” I had my suspicions, so I got dressed and planned a fun day. We went to Arrington Vineyards, shared wine, had wonderful conversation, and left without getting engaged. As we were leaving, Erick asked if I wanted to go out to eat. I was a little let down and neither of us was very hungry, so we decided to just go home and watch a movie. Once we were home, I hurried into my pajamas, made popcorn, and settled onto the couch. That’s when Erick walked over, got down on one knee, and asked me to marry him. It was private, without makeup or fancy clothes, in our home, and it was perfect. Then we proceeded to call my parents with the surprise of wedding number two scheduled for 2014!
When did y’all get married? October 18, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 40 for the ceremony and dinner, 80 for the reception
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We had beautiful elements all around, but we kept it reigned in and as simple as possible. Also, we knew we wanted a small and intimate ceremony, but to celebrate with all our friends, so we had only 40 people at the ceremony and dinner, and then had a great dessert and dancing reception with all our friends afterwards.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Focus on your relationship and marriage, and let the professionals handle the details. It was so much fun being a guest at my own wedding. I had zero stress because I had zero control, but I knew the people in charge wanted the best for us and I was paying them to do a great job without my help.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We plan to keep our day-to-day very much the same–working, playing with our dog, cooking dinner, hiking, reading, and being best friends. We look forward to working on our house and yard, visiting Rwanda, growing our friendships, and welcoming children whenever that happens.

Photographer: Kristin Sweeting / Planner: Kristin Kaplan of Stunning Events / Venue and Catering: Sambuca / Florist: Brocade Designs / Wedding Cake: Nashville Sweets / Rentals: Visual Elements / Lighting: Nashville Audio Visual / Ceremony Musician: Eric Knutsen / Reception Music: Cosmo Creations / Special Details: Rwandan craft workshop / Bride’s Gown: “Gianna” by Maggie Sottero / Alterations: Tu Holman / Bride’s Hair Accessories: “Art Deco Bridal Headband” by Veiled Beauty / Hair and Makeup: Debbie Dover / Bride’s Shoes: “Angela” by Coloriffics / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “041893600,” “04241040,” and “041885760” in Navy by Adrianna Papell

lisa Written with love by Lisa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Hillary @ Brocade reply

    We were so delighted to share in Andrea and Erick’s celebration with the Event Design, Floral, and Paper Goods design. Thank you so much for the feature!

  2. avatar Olivia Fischer reply

    Love the glittering bridesmaids dresses and nice photography too!

  3. avatar Featured on Southern Weddings | Stunning Events | Nashville Wedding Planner | Event Production & Design reply

    […] and green wedding photographed by the amazing, Kristin Sweeting Photography. Head on over to the Southern Weddings blog to see the full feature! Such a gorgeous couple, both inside and out, and we loved working with our […]

  4. avatar Weekly Wedding Favorites No. 4 – Kyla Mary reply

    […] Photo Kristin Sweeting via Southern Weddings […]

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I’m a girl who was all about candlelight at my wedding, so I might be a bit biased, but if I had to pick, I’d say it’s the lighting that makes a room.  And can we all agree that the hundreds of flickering candles and dim lighting made Lindsey + Ryan’s reception at the aVenue in downtown Nashville?  Chef’s Market catered their intimate celebration, and Village Florist styled the understated blooms.  Lindsey’s another bride who opted for the mix-n-match table arrangements with great success.  (Guess I’m a sucker for long banquet tables!)  Want more?  Hop on over to Kate Murphy’s blog post from L + R’s Southern soiree!

See all the photos from Lindsey + Ryan’s wedding in their Real Wedding Gallery!

Three adjectives that describe the day are: Beautiful, exciting, fun
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The wedding topper. It was a bride and groom riding on a bike.
Describe your wedding flowers: All of our flowers were white and green except for a hint of purple in the bridesmaid bouquets. We wanted a bright, outdoor garden type of feel so we liked having so many white flowers.
Describe your wedding cake: It was a delicious red velvet cake with cream cheese icing. The top tier was topped with fresh flowers and was decorated with green flowers to compliment our “garden feel.”
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? When we first saw each other before the ceremony.

Written with love by Katharine
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