Like Madelynne, Kelly is a super longtime Southern Weddings fan, which makes me even more excited to welcome her as June’s Southern Bride of the Month! I adore her pink and green wedding plans, budget-savvy tips, and infectious enthusiasm for all things wedding, and think y’all will, too. Take it away, Kelly!
Hi! What’s your name?
Kelly Lynne Stack
What’s your fiancé’s name?
Andrew Franklin Dellinger
Are either of you on Twitter, or do you have a blog?
I have a blog, Hello Seester! I also have a Twitter account.
How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story.
A mutual friend introduced us to one another the day before classes started our freshman year of college at Belmont. We immediately hit it off, he asked me to go for a walk that evening (which resulted in me missing the first mandatory RA meeting on my dormitory floor!), and we’ve been college sweethearts ever since!
Now tell us alllll about the proposal.
A couple of years into dating, Drew and I decided we were in it for the long haul. From that point forward, he kept promising me, “We’ll get engaged the fall of 2011.” May rolled around and we went ring shopping for the first time. As soon as August 21st (our fourth dating anniversary) rolled around, I was waiting for it. I kept getting so discouraged every time I went out with Drew, because I expected it at every turn. By the time October was over, I was convinced it would never happen.
When he asked me to go on a dress-up date on a Thursday mid-November, I was suspicious, but cautious. Drew stopped by my office midday to get something out of my car, and I slyly had my coworker ask him if he was going to propose (little did I know, she was already in on the surprise!). After he left, I drilled her, and she told me he still hadn’t asked my father for permission. I was so upset! I totally believed her, so for the rest of the night I was completely off-guard. He made the sweetest video slideshow for me chronicling our entire dating relationship and showed it to me after I had gotten dressed up for our date (in the first dress I wore on a formal date with him freshman year). It wasn’t until the second-to-last slide, which read “Drew and Kelly went to their friends’ weddings and always dreamed of having their own…” when I finally started to realize what was happening. The last slide was his proposal. I caught him in my peripheral vision getting down on one knee and my mouth fell open. I was in shock for a good five minutes, and then I laughed, screamed, and sobbed with glee. Then he told me he’d videotaped the whole thing! We have an entire hidden-camera video of me waltzing in, bragging about my hairstyling abilities, and genuinely responding to his sweetness. I couldn’t have asked for a better proposal – especially since he got me SO good! You can check out our video here.
When’s the big day?
Saturday, July 21st, 2012
Where might you two be tying the knot?
A little barn in my hometown of Pleasant View, Tennessee, called The Livery Stables.
How did you pick your ceremony and reception venues? What do you love most about each space?
Guest retention and convenience were important to me, so we picked a place where we could do both the ceremony and reception (without losing people in-between). What really sold us was the “feel” of the venue, too; one of my most favorite Nashville locations is Belle Meade Plantation, and The Livery Stables reminded me of Belle Meade’s Carriage House with its barn doors, wooden pillars, and equestrian theme. It’s cozy, homey, and not in the slightest stuffy. The second Drew and I walked in over Thanksgiving weekend, we knew it was “the one.” Not to mention – it’s completely air-conditioned! No sweating at the wedding for this July bride!
The beautiful pink and green inspiration board that Kelly put together!
Were you totally that girl who planned her wedding from age 5, or not so much?
Oh, absolutely. One of the first questions I ask people I’m getting to know is “How do you envision your future wedding?” (or “What was your wedding like?” if they’re already married!). Needless to say, no one was surprised when I decided to go the wedding planner career path :) I’ve always considered what my colors will be, what silhouette I’ll wear, what details I’ll want to incorporate. I used to bookmark every wedding I liked in my “Favorites” folder, or link to them on my Facebook – you can only imagine how delightful it was to discover Pinterest last year!!!
Who or what has been most inspiring in the wedding planning process?
Pinterest has been the best way for me to organize my ideas, but wedding blogs and magazines (ESPECIALLY Southern Weddings) have been a wealth of inspiration throughout everything. It’s also been lovely working weddings, because you see so many fabulous concepts and how they play out in real life!
Kelly loves this raspberry limeade for a pink signature drink (photo by Karen Mordechai from Sunday Suppers)
Who or what has been most helpful in the wedding planning process?
My event designer (also affectionately known as my Wedding Fairy Godmother – every bride needs one!!!), Hillary Yeager, has been my saving grace since day one. (She even knew I was getting engaged before I did!) I’ve worked with her on multiple events and projects throughout my 2+ years at StudioWed and A Delightful Day. When we got engaged and were faced with a real-world budget (to reconcile with my fantasy-world wedding dreams), Hillary so graciously offered to let me work off my wedding flowers by helping her around her floral studio, Brocade Designs. Since then, her role has morphed into my paper goods designer, décor sourcer, sounding board, personal inspirer, and now even dessert bar-creator! She’s helped me with everything from picking out the perfect linens to booking a gourmet coffee caterer (after we made the last-minute decision to scrap a full meal in favor of a coffee-and-desserts reception!), researching scrumptious pie recipes, and designing the most stunningly gorgeous invitation suite I could dream of. Not to mention, I consider her a dear friend and adore her company!
Another gorgeous invitation suite Kelly loves, this one by Hardink Calligraphy
Has your vision for your wedding changed or evolved over the course of your engagement? If so, how?
Completely! As I mentioned before, I was one of those girls who had her ENTIRE wedding planned out before she even tried on an engagement ring. The issue with dreaming out every single detail (down to the pale yellow seersucker napkins) was that I was giving myself nowhere to be flexible. Turns out, our dream date (September 29th) conflicted with Drew starting a new job at a CPA firm in late August. Our dream venue was completely out-of-budget when we realized how much their in-house catering would cost (especially since catering was/is NOT a top priority). Even our colors (buttercream yellow and dark chocolate brown) would’ve been completely washed out in our neutral-toned wedding barn. I gave myself a little time to mourn my wedding dreams, but then gave myself liberty to create new ones (with my future husband’s input – so important!).
A new color scheme means beautiful pink blooms and fun gold stirrers! (Photo on left by Jessica Lorren via Style Me Pretty; photo on right by Beaux Arts Photographie via Santa Barbara Chic)
Which part of your wedding are you most invested in?
I think the one thing that has stayed consistently consistent throughout planning has been my value in the documentation of our day. I anguished over finding the perfect photographer (there are so many fantastic ones out there!) for WEEKS after we got engaged. One of the biggest blessings and curses of working in the wedding industry is your awareness of all the talented vendors out there. I definitely put the most pressure on myself to find the right photographer and videographer to perfectly depict our day. I’m huge on documenting moments in life – I was always the annoying preteen sporting my loud blue camcorder wherever I went, and my favorite college class was Creative Non-Fiction (in which we wrote our own memoirs). I want to be able to relive every moment from our wedding day and show it to our grandchildren. We are so thrilled to be working with Kristine Neeley Photography and McNeal Wedding Films – not only are they “friendors,” they’re immensely talented, and I know they’ll portray our day in a way that genuinely depicts Drew’s and my relationship and excitement at spending the rest of our life together!!
Monogrammed bouquet wraps that Kelly loves (photo by Kate Headley via Southern Weddings)
Have you picked your dress yet? How’d that go? What will you be wearing on the big day?
Choosing my wedding dress was the very first thing I did after getting engaged! I had PRAYED that Drew would propose in time for me to attend The Bride Room’s Third Annual Super Sale (a fantastic sample sale held once a year at the most lovely Nashville bridal boutique!). I knew it would likely be my only chance to get a designer dress. Fortunately, Drew popped the question 10 days before the sale. I had enough time to peruse their dresses on a normal day (per their suggestion), see what else was out there in other stores (nothing could compare!), and go to the sale! I was the first bride to find her dream dress that day – it was so meant to be!
Who is your favorite vendor you’ve booked so far?
Oh my goodness, I couldn’t pick a favorite! We have been so blessed to work exclusively with “friendors” (friend-vendors!) on our big day – how incredible is it to have a personal relationship with each and every person contributing to the most important party of your life! However, I will say I am perhaps the most excited about our wedding cake. I am a complete and utter cake snob, so I have meticulously tasted each and every slice of wedding cake I’ve come in contact with over the past few years. When it came to deciding who would make our wedding cake, there was literally NO QUESTION that Juanita Lane of Dulce Desserts would be our baker. Her cakes are made from the highest quality ingredients, gorgeously constructed, and her buttercream is TO. DIE. FOR. To give you a little taste of our wedding cake, here are the flavors (you’re going to die): chocolate chip cake with coffee buttercream, European butter cake with raspberry buttercream and lemon curd, and pistachio cake with pistachio buttercream and a thin layer of chocolate truffle ganache. TELL me you’re not drooling right this minute!!
Some of Kelly’s dessert inspiration! (Photo on left by Katie Lewis via Style Me Pretty, and photo on right from Martha Stewart Weddings
What do you love most about Southern weddings?
Drew and I are both born and raised in the South. I grew up watching Gone with the Wind and hand-churning peach ice cream on my grandparents’ back porch. Southern weddings aren’t a far cry from Southern living on a daily basis: it’s all about hospitality, family, tradition, and having a good time. It is our ultimate goal to throw the best party of our lives (thus far) as we celebrate joining our lives together permanently. We’ve invited family and friends from all walks of life, made it a point to pay homage to our upbringings and the generations that came before us in as many ways as we can, and we anticipate dancing ALL NIGHT LONG.
Tell us about the one that got away. Is there one dream thing or vendor you wish you could have fit into your budget?
The first time I went dress-shopping I fell madly in love with Monique Lhuillier’s pink “Candy” gown. While I did strongly consider eloping or having a very small brunch wedding to accommodate the dress (and eventually used it for inspiration when I changed my color scheme), I decided it wasn’t the wisest move for me to toss out everything JUST for the dress. I am one zillion percent happy with the wedding dress that ended up being “The One,” but if I could have fit it in the budget, I’d LOVE to wear Candy as a getaway gown!
The pink dress of Kelly’s dreams, and another dream-worthy bouquet (photo by Ryan Ray via Wedding Chicks!)
What do you wish you would have known at the beginning of your engagement?
That it would, indeed, be possible for us to have the wedding of our dreams without eloping or having to seriously compromise anything that was TRULY important to us. I was so stressed out the first month dealing with a budget, vendors with booked-up dates, and the uncertainty of it all — I should have known it would work out, all in God’s great timing! Oh, and one last thing – it’s totally NOT worth it to get your teeth professionally laser-whitened. Doing that has been the most physically painful experience of my entire life. Brides – take heed! If you’re going to go to the extremes for white teeth, do it EARLIER than the day (or week!) before the wedding! It would be awful to grimace in all those pretty photos!
What are you most looking forward to on your wedding day?
I am looking forward to SO many moments on our wedding day. I CANNOT wait to peek around the corner of the barn on my family’s property to do my First Look with Drew. I can’t wait to sob through my wedding vows (it’s inevitable). I can’t wait to see ALL our friends and family all united in one place, for one occasion — that’s once in a lifetime. I’m also pretty thrilled to be announced into our reception as Mrs. Andrew Dellinger!!!!
More lovely pink and green details that are inspiring Kelly (signature drink from A Cup of Mai!)
Any advice you’d like to pass along to fellow brides?
Prioritize, prioritize, prioritize! Don’t be afraid to adapt your priorities after you initially set them, but keep your eye on what’s actually important. You don’t have to follow the cookie-cutter mold for everything. It’s YOUR wedding. Make it your own!
Now it’s your turn to ask for advice – is there anything you’d like to poll the SW readers on?
How do you keep yourself present at every moment of the wedding day? I’ve gotten to this point between showers and bridal portraits and all of these exciting events that have been planned for months where everything feels surreal and flies by because I can’t believe it’s actually happening. I don’t want to miss a second of the wedding because I’m so busy thinking, “What is going ON?!” How do you shut your brain off and simply be the bride?!
Thank you so much for playing along, Kelly! For more from Miss Kelly, be sure to check out her astounding collection of 124 Pinterest boards right here! Readers, if you’d like to apply to be a Southern Bride of the Month, check out this post for all the details! If you’ve already emailed me, you’re still in the running for future months!