With Valentine’s Day quickly approaching, I realized there was SO much more that I wanted to cover about our wedding, which will continue into February. Honestly, it’s overwhelming to think about ALL of the details, and where to start, so I’ll just break everything down, from THE dress to the unbelievable dinner! So, I present to you: Part One!
Also, please note that our wedding was in September of 2019, which was just a few months before Covid took over, so we were incredibly BLESSED to be able to have a wedding pre-social distancing and mask days.
My heart goes out to all of the couples whose weddings were affected by this pandemic.
Our Rehearsal Dinner
Rehearsal – Our venue Chapel at Ana Villa
We had an hour for a rehearsal at our venue, followed by a dinner at Mi Cocina. We all had so much fun… so much fun, in fact, that we hardly took any photos! The majority of any of the photos from that day were taken by someone else.
Rehearsal Dinner – Mi Cocina in Shops at Legacy in Plano, where we had the entire upstairs to ourselves. Each guest had a choice of several menu items, and plenty of choices for beverages 🙂 (Mambo Taxi for the win!)
Our rehearsal dinner was when we gifted our wedding party with their gifts, which included items that would be worn at the wedding! More details on that further down the page!
After our rehearsal dinner, a group of us went to a bar near our hotel (which is in the same parking lot as our venue), and danced and sang karaoke into the night! So much for my beauty sleep… haha
Save The Dates & Invitations
Save the Dates
I designed and printed our Save the Dates on Shutterfly, and they arrived promptly and looked beautiful! I probably made several versions of our Save the Dates before Chris and I decided that this was the one that we wanted. I highly recommend Shutterfly (and download the app – you’ll get free stuff ALL of the time!)
FUNNY SIDE STORY: I actually ordered a quantity of Save the Dates that matched the number of people being invited… NOT essentially cutting the number in half to account for just ONE card going to one home with MULTIPLE people. SO, to this day, I’m pretty sure I still have 100 or so if you’d like one, you know where to find me…
Our stunning invitations were designed by my husband’s cousin (and now MY cousin, too!), Erin Saxon, and the envelopes were addressed in a beautiful hand-written calligraphy by my Matron of Honor, Ashton Ready. The invitation suite incorporated our fall-inspired color palette, gold accents that were seen in the bridal party accessories and ballroom décor, and magnolia flowers and leaves to represent the grand magnolia trees that served as the breathtaking backdrop in the chapel. We had the formal invitation, the “details” card with the attire, venue, and wedding website info, and the RSVP card (with a blank space for us to write in the number of people in each household invited so there was no confusion; for us OR them.)
The envelopes for both the RSVP cards and the invitation are from Paper Source!
TIP: If you don’t listen to ANY of my advice on wedding planning, at least listen to this: Write a number on the back of each RSVP card which will correspond to that guest’s line on your Excel document guest list. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the majority of our guests did not write their name on the card, so when we received their reply, we had no idea who they were…. until we looked at the number on the back of the card. Mystery solved! You’re welcome.
The Chapel at Ana Villa in The Colony, Texas is tucked away from the hustle and bustle of the city, and surrounded by lush landscape, yet very easy to access from the highway. We loved the look and feel of the venue, including the Chapel with gorgeous, wooden pews, and MASSIVE cathedral-style windows, showcasing Magnolia tress, a large and ornate Bridal Suite, and a breathtaking Grand Ballroom, which could accommodate up to 350 guests!
THE Dress & THE Suit
My gown is by Justin Alexander, and I purchased it from Bliss Bridal in Fort Worth. The organza gown put a modern twist on the classic ball gown with biased striped satin and organza skirt details. It featured a bow belt at the natural waistline, a straight-across neckline, and buttons to the end of the chapel length train. It’s truly the dress of my dreams. (And it most definitely resembles Maggie Carpenter’s favorite dress from “Runaway Bride,” which made my movie-loving heart so happy.)
I tried on only a few dresses before I said “okay. Now THIS is the one.” The dress in the first picture was ALMOST the dress, but I wasn’t 100%. I actually tried on, took off, and tried on the dress that I ultimately picked, and once that veil went on, it made it so real. I knew I’d found the ONE. Although it was heavy to walk around in, and has 1,000 layers of tulle (in 100-degree, Texas weather), it’s a timeless, elegant ballgown – the dress of which I’d always dreamt! AND IT HAS POCKETS. So, naturally I kept snacks in there…
I did actually change dresses after dinner so I could dance with ease, and I chose a Calvin Klein high-low A-line gown that I purchased from Macy’s. I never thought I’d actually want a second gown, but when I saw this one, I KNEW it had to be mine. And it was perfect for dancing and twirling into the wee hours of the night!
I’m even featured on the designer’s website in my ceremony dress – See below! The dress has since been discontinued, but that’s fine by me – no one else will be wearing this magical dress going forward! 🙂
Chris’s suit came from Express, and he had been looking for the absolute perfect suit in the right shade of blue with a matching vest. He also knew that he wanted to forgo a tie, and don a large, burgundy bowtie.
Bride and Groom Gifts
Opening the gifts for one another was one of my favorite parts of the day. We chose not to read our personal vows during the ceremony, so we wrote them in little books to give with our gifts to one another. Having what we’ve promised to each other in-writing means so much more than hearing it read aloud.
My gift to Chris was a Fossil watch with “I wanna grow old with you” and our wedding date personalized on the back. Our first dance was to that classic Adam Sandler song from “The Wedding Singer,” so it not only is a song that makes us smile, but also reminisce.
Chris’s gift to me was a STUNNING diamond tennis bracelet, which ended up going perfectly with my jewelry I was already wearing for the wedding. I love that our gifts to one another were not only beautiful and meaningful, but practical for everyday wear!
Bridal Party Attire & Accessories
The Bridesmaids (and Bridesman!)
The bridesmaids wore wine-colored, floor length, chiffon or crepe gowns from David’s Bridal. I wanted all of my girls (and guy!) to match in color and length, but wanted them to pick the style in which they felt more comfortable. My Bridesman, Jeff wore a suit from Express in almost the EXACT same color, so it worked out really well!
My gift to my bridesmaids were gold Kate Spade earrings, a gold bracelet with a knot, and a charm with each girls’ initial from Etsy, and an oversized chambray button-down, long-sleeve shirt with their name and initial on the front pocket. I got Jeff the same shirt, just with a different font for his monogram. My shirt was white with “I Do” and “9.7.19” in a Disney font 🙂
I wanted to give my bridal party something that they could continue wearing even after the wedding… or re-gift if they so choose (Yup, there’s a story there… ask me about it sometime) 😉
Like Chris and Jeff, the groomsmen also wore suits from Express, with burgundy Express ties to match the bridesmaids’ dresses, as well as burgundy-striped socks and gold tie bars from Tie Bar, which were groomsmen gifts from Chris.
Ring Bearers and Flower Girl
Our handsome ring bearers, Liam and Miles, wore blue suits, burgundy bow ties to match Chris, and brown shoes, all from Amazon. Our precious flower girl, Charlotte, wore a white, floor-length ballgown with lace elements, similar in design to my gown!
Hair & Makeup
The girls, my mom and Chris’s mom, and I had a BLAST getting our hair and makeup done, which begun in our hotel suite, and eventually moved over to the venue (we just walked over – it’s in the same parking lot! Convenient!)
Our makeup (done by Lauren and Mandy with Shear Thairapy in Southlake, Texas) was a classic glam look, so our features were extenuated, but we didn’t look like we were caked in makeup. (They also did my FANTASTIC spray tan! Unfortunately, the salon only focuses on hair now, BUT if you need their contact info to inquire about makeup, let me know!)
All of our hair was done by one of my favorite people on earth; one of my best friends’ moms who has done my hair since high school. Debbie has her own suite at Tangles & Co. in Southlake, and she ROCKED our hair, AND did it quickly and with ease. She also provided a lot of comic relief to a slightly hectic morning and afternoon!
My Jewelry & Accessories
I wanted to wear white gold jewelry with enough “bling” to make the accessories pop, but not so much that it took away from my dress. My Something Blue was a white gold ring with a blue sapphire, which was a gift from my parents many moons ago. I also wore drop, Gemma Layne earrings from Dillard’s, and Badgley Mischka shoes with not-too-tall heel. I also wore a bracelet that matched the bridesmaids, but mine was in silver where there’s was in gold.
Veil & Garter
I wore the Elizabeth veil in Diamond White lined with white satin, by Sara Gabriel Veils, and I purchased it along with my dress at Bliss Bridal. (Check it out below- I’m even featured on the website!!)
My garter came from (of all places) Hobby Lobby! haha I didn’t see any sense in spending a lot of money on something that a) wouldn’t be seen or b) just be thrown into a crowd of men, anyway… But it had a little pop of rhinestones, and a bow that matched my dress, so it was adorable!
Alright, so that was a LOT of information, and I hope you enjoyed and/or learned something new! Stay tuned for Part 2 coming this week, covering our:
- Flowers and Decor
- Videography + Our Wedding Video
- Photo Booth
- The Little Details
Subscribe so you won’t miss out on future wedding posts!
– What we’re glad we splurged on
– What we would have changed
– My bridal showers & Bachelorette Party!
– All about Jamaica, and what to pack for your Honeymoon
– What to remember for on your wedding day bag (and not be a distracted looney tune like I was)
– And so much more!
Until next time,