Our wedding feature today just boasts of complete and utter elegance. And you know what’s so noteworthy about it is that regardless of how perfect the event is, our bride Kelly spills that planning such an amazing wedding is not as challenging as it is thought to be. This just makes me want to take down every tips from her if ever I end up planning my own special day. But really, the photos themselves are lovely to look at which goes to show that everything really was picture perfect. And don’t even get me started on the reception venue, that place is just magnificent. So read on as Kelly tells us everything and see for yourself how their wedding really is effortlessly elegant. Congratulations Kelly & Nic!
Nic and I met when we were 25 and taking a night & weekend course at a nearby college for our careers. We were friends for the entire year and started dating that following summer. We took a trip to visit some mutual friends towards the end of the summer and knew then and there that we were meant for each other. It sounds cliche, but he truly treats me like a princess, and I a prince, and this is how you should always treat the man/woman you are in love with. As I tend to say to people, we met at age 25, started dating at 26, got engaged at 27, and got married at 28. And each year has been better than the last!
What makes the two of you a perfect match?
We completely and utterly ‘get each other’. We got married at 28, so we both had past relationships, jobs, houses, and different groups of friends. We came into the relationship truly knowing who we were as individuals and love and respect each other for that. We have similar values, goals in life, and want mostly the same things for our future children and how we want to raise them. We had so many of the imporant conversations early-on in our relationship, which only proved to us more that we are perfect for each other. Plus, he is INCREDIBLY patient with me, which is apparently necessary because I tend to get a little stressed out at the small stuff!
Hands down the best advice I received, and really took to heart was when we were working on the guest list, as I was 27 and had several groups of friends from high school, college, and post-college and had been to many of their weddings over the years but had lost touch. The advice was not to invite my past, but to only invite those who are going to be a part of my future. That really helped put things into perspective for me. I didn’t need to invite my college roommate from 6 years ago simply because I went to hers right after we graduated – we hadn’t really talked since so there was no need even though we’re still friends. I have given this advice to everyone since it was given to me and I hope everyone reading this takes it to heart.
What tips & tricks (can we use “hacks”?) can you share future brides that you yourself have learned during and after your wedding?
Enjoy every minute of your engagement because it is so fun to say you’re engaged and talk about your wedding…and after the wedding it’s all about when are you having babies. I loved saying that I was engaged! We made the most out of our rehearsal dinner…it was our time to celebrate with the most imporant people to us before all the craziness of the actual wedding day arrived. We gave our bridal party and readers their gifts with very touching and personalized letters to them. We also gave our parents gifts with thoughtful letters. While doing this, we really spoke from the heart and thanked them for all of their love and support. Also, the day of the wedding, once I was 100% ready to go to the church, I pulled my mom and dad aside and gave each of them a small, but very touching gift with another letter to them. It was a very special moment for us. And lastly, the day before the wedding I dropped a card in the mail to my parents. I knew they would get it while I was on my honeymoon since I left right away. We never spoke of it, but I wanted to immediately thank them for giving me the best wedding gift possible…their blessing of my marriage. As for the wedding day itself…it flies by and I knew it would so I really did my best to stop, look around, and take it all in every 20-30 minutes. For that reason, I am so glad we had an after-party because I didn’t want the night to end!
What were some challenges you faced planning your wedding & what would you have done differently to avoid them?
I can honestly say that we didn’t face any challenges. Some may not believe me, but it is the truth. We’re 28 and have been to dozens of weddings and through conversation we knew what we liked and didn’t like and we also took advice from everyone along the way. If there was anything I would have done differently, I probably would have started getting ready 1 hour earlier because I felt like all of the pampering ended so soon!
I wasn’t the girl who grew up dreaming of my wedding day, my wedding dress, or anything else for that matter. However, the instant I got engaged I knew that I wanted a traditional ceremony in my lifelong church and that I wanted a very elegant and classy reception. Nic was completely on par, which again shows that we are great for each other as we literally did not fight throughout any of the wedding planning. My initial inspiration for our decor was what we ended up going with because we looked at several different types of venues, but I kept going back to my intial gut feeling and am so glad that I did. For instance, music is something that is near and dear to my heart, thus I wanted to use the grand organ at my church for my walk down the aisle, but the piano for the soloist. We also wanted to create an elegant ambiance during the cocktail hour, so we hired a harpist.
My DJ. I knew I wanted a DJ because my friend had an amazing one at her wedding the year before me. As soon as I got engaged I reached out to him to hire him. When I saw his price, I was floored at how affordable he was compared to what I was planning to spend.
How many guests were invited in your wedding and what was the final guest count?
300 invited, 240 attended.
How did you narrow down your list?
Only a little bit, his parents, my parents, and the two of us wrote down absolutely every name we could possibly think to invite, and then removed a few.
Prelude: We had a soloist sing ‘The Prayer’ by Bayer, Sager, & Foster
Processional: Bridal Party entered to ‘Canon in D Major’ by Pachelbel and my dad walked me down the aisle to
“Trumpet Voluntary’ by Clarke
Solo: ‘How Beautiful’ by Paris
Recessional: ‘Allegro Maestoso E Vivace’ by Handel
2 weeks in Moorea and Bora Bora in the French Polynesia, both in over-the-water bungalows – it was the trip of a lifetime!
What are you most excited about for the future?
Starting a family and growing old together. Again, it sound cliche but he is going to be such an amazing father and I’m so excited to experience all that parenthood brings (well most of it anyway).
Definitely go with what I mentioned earlier about the guest list and only inviting your future, not your past. Also, don’t sweat the small stuff because no matter what, your day will be wonderful. And if something goes wrong, you can laugh about it for the next 6 decades! Also, before you do anything, talk to both of your parents about the budget. Knock that uncomfortable conversation out of the way before you start planning a thing. Whether they are paying for the entire wedding, or not giving you a penny, at least you know what type of budget you are working with, or have to create….this will massively help you when it comes to starting all of the planning because without knowing what money you are going to have to work within, you will have a lot of stress which will result in several uncomfortable conversations/fights. The first thing we did was talk to our parents and I think that’s why we didn’t argue or get stressed out during the planning.
A timeless, once-in-a-lifetime, fairytale love! But really, just a deep love that is supported by our families that was celebrated via a classic and elegant wedding.
What inspired the wedding day outfits?
Black tuxes for the groom, groomsmen, and fathers – classic. Long, Jenny Yoo bridesmaids gowns in navy because the color is timeless and everyone looks good in navy. I made them floor length in July because it was a light fabric and I wanted a more formal wedding. My gown was a brand new, Stephen Yearick and I wanted a standout dress that no one had seen before. Inspiration for all of them was just a traditional/classic/elegant look, but one that made a lasting impression and would leave people talking about what we wore in a good way.
My dad walking me down the aisle and seeing Nic standing there holding back tears.
What were the highlights from the ceremony & reception?
The last few moments with my dad before he walked me down the aisle, Nic & I saying our vows, our grand entrance at our reception from a balcony overlooking our dance floor, our first dance to “From this Moment” by Shania Twain, my dad’s welcome and the toasts, the Three Tenors performing during the entree portion of dinner, my bouquet toss from the balcony onto the dance floor (one of my 2 sisters caught it!), and the after party with all of our friends complete with milkshakes and pizza.
Was there a theme for the ceremony and reception?
Not really a theme…just very classic, elegant, and pretty.