Old, New, Borrowed, Blue: Our Wedding Day!
Feb 18, 2019
It’s our anniversary! I can’t believe it, but today marks exactly six months to the day that we tied the knot. On Saturday August 18, 2018, in front of our friends, families and loved, ones we sealed the deal with a big ole wet kiss! A few weeks ago, we spent nearly two hours scrolling through the photos sent in from our wedding photographers and had the most beautiful walk down memory lane as we laughed, giggled and held back tears from watching the replay of such a heavenly day.
In case you didn’t know, many times you see brides and grooms cry on wedding day; it’s partly because of all of the love and emotion, but tears are act as a big ole sigh of relief! Planning a wedding is EXHAUSTING…AND EXPENSIVE! To see years, months, weeks and days of hard work finally culminate in a dreamy, romantic ceremony and a party with your faves is worth all the tears you can muster up. And boy did we cry!
I cried over my dress, I cried looking at them damn invoices and receipts, I cried when my husband surprised me and serenaded me down the aisle, I cried when I looked into the crowd and felt so much love, I cried during the signing, I cried and cried and cried! So many little details made our day oh so special and memorable and I’m excited to share some of them with you!
I hardly got any sleep the night before, but for some reason I woke up refreshed and ready to say “I do!” Early that morning my sister, mom and stepmom whipped up a big breakfast for the entire crew in our hotel suite even sending a few plates up to the guys. Yellow grits, bacon, eggs, toast and orange juice. The room buzzed with excitement as curling irons sizzled, eye shadows dusted the air, oils were applied and we all squeezed our way into our dresses. I don’t know where the time flew either; one minute we were cruising and the next it was a mad dash to get to the elevator. I literally had the best glam squad! My hairstylists, MUA and dress designer ended up being my honorary bridesmaids, they never left my side and made sure I had every single thing I needed. With all of my girls ready, they watched as I got my finishing touches applied, and it was then that the nerves struck. This was really happening!
It took me about a week scouring the internet before I found my dress! I fell head over heels in love with the Gahlia Lahav “Thelma” gown. I obsessed over this dress and saved every photo of every angle I could find. Knowing that it takes at least eight months to fit, order, customize, fit again and pick up your gown (we planned this wedding in six months), I knew I had to start making those gown moves STAT! I called a few Florida bridal shops to find out if they carried the brand and only a few did. Making matters worse, the dress was from a special collection and would only be in stores during the brand’s trunk shows. None of my travel dates lined up for the trunk shows. I booked fitting appointments anyway and tried on about 30 other dresses…but my mind was still on Thelma. It was clear that I wouldn’t get to try on this dress. So I called up a local designer and former co-worker to have him recreate Thelma for me. I again booked a trip for us, this time to go material shopping! We hit the crem-de-la-crem of fabric stores in Miami and purchased some beautiful and rich materials…they were so expensive, they even smelled good! I was happy and hopeful that I’d get the wedding dress of my dreams.
After getting measured a few times and several fittings at my house, honestly, I started to get worried. The dress just wasn’t looking like I wanted it to look. And then there were the (many) missed appointments, delayed shopping trips and cancelled appointments that I muscled and smiled through. What was the icing on top, was the very prominent thigh cut-out on the dress that looked nothing like I asked for. This raised some bright red, red flags for my mom and my sister. We called an emergency meeting with said designer and, rightfully so, expressed our unhappiness about everything. This was the first time I’d ever expressed my dissatisfaction to this designer, the shoddy process and unprofessionalism. Despite all the BS being spewed my way, I looked past it all because I had a goal in mind and smiled through all the crap thrown my way. So, imagine my shock when two days later I got an email from said designer saying that he wanted to “recuse” himself from the project. DUMPED! HE DUMED ME SIX WEEKS BEFORE MY WEDDING! I had no dress. All I was left with, was cut up material and…thug tears! I had to act fast! I toyed with the idea of making a third trip to Florida to purchase a dress, but finally decided to visit a local bridal store. It was here that I met Apryl and the team at Platinum Bridal Boutique who saved
me from going to jail the day.
I ended up purchasing a (very expensive) Pnina Tournai gown that Apryl tailored to perfection! We managed to use some of the bought material from supposed-to-be dress #1 but I still ended up needing a bit more. This dress unnecessarily ran me into so much money! In all of my frenzy and frustration and anger and overwhelming feeling, Apryl was so accommodating and kind. She worked her ass off turning that dress into my version of the Thelma; adding sleeves, creating the straight thigh cut-outs (FINALLY!), cutting out the back panel and…calming me down. Sometimes, in the moment, we can’t see why some people and some things go wrong but in the end they lead us to the people and things means for us. Still wondering who this damned designer is? I’ll just say…at least Porsha Williams got her dress! ☕️🐸 To this day, the torn and tattered pieces of material from what was supposed to be my first wedding dress sit in my closet. Maybe we’ll use it for the baby’s christening? There’s so much material, this fabric will probably last us three babies…or four ;). Anyways, take a look at how Apryl came through in the clutch for me. And yes, the blog gets much happier from here, I promise!
Our ceremony was held at the historical Church of God of Prophecy East Tabernacle. This church holds such a special place in my husband’s life, not only because he grew up here, but because his dad was once the senior paster and now currently serves as national overseer for the entire denomination. He also officiated a part of our ceremony. When planning the look and feel of our wedding I always navigated towards lots of white with greens and a splash of blush; a very rustic chic, garden feel. And chandeliers were a must! You can even see that theme played throughout our wedding shower in this blog. There were aspects of the ceremony that were on my must have list; some happened, some didn’t! My husband is a music lover, so he was in charge of all songs. We decided very early on that we didn’t want any recorded music played and that we’d have a live band for every musical portion of the ceremony. Listen, the band, the singers, the players killed it! It was a must that they sang two songs for me, Anita Baker’s “I love you just because,” and Avant and Keke Wyatt’s “You and I.” Their renditions of both had me jamming in that church and nearly brought me to tears. They even took us to church, no pun intended, with a good ole fashioned praise and worship segment! I was utterly surprised when I was given the signal to make my grand entrance and realised that my husband was signing me up the aisle, I finally realised why I was banned from all band practices. He sang Brian McKnight’s “The rest of my life.”
As a writer it was a must that I wrote my own vows. In the days leading up to the wedding, I added a new word, a new paragraph and stayed up to about 3 am the day of the wedding putting the finishing touches on it. Welp; let’s just say husbae didn’t get to write his so instead of leaving him to free ball it, I decided to forego reading mine. When I finally had the chance to ask him about it, during the signing of the register all he could give me was his best, “oh sh*t, babe!” face LOL!! This is where these first two photos came from!
Another must have? An epic rice toss after the ceremony! I’m so happy we were able to pull this off. Blocking off a main street on a Saturday in Nassau was no easy feat, but we did it and caught some awesome shots! There are some wedding traditions that I love and always dreamed of having, this was one of them!
Thank goodness for that big ole breakfast we cooked that morning! I’m certain that the portrait session that happens after the ceremony is right up there in the 10 most annoying and frustrating things to do in life! It was so hot! The newly Baha Mar hotel was the perfect spot too; it’s grassy outdoor area and chic indoor stylings were so beautiful. I bought a few smoke bombs to use as props for our photos and loved how they added so much color and character to the pics.
Whew!!! Y’all still here?? I know that was a lot of pics, but there’s so much more to go! Everyone in our family were troopers and soldiered on, despite life threatening hunger and thirstiness. As our guests enjoyed our cocktail hour with live music, appetizers and cool drinks; we melted under the beautiful Bahamian sun…thinking about those watermelon and feta cheese on skewers, stuffed mushrooms and refreshing drinks…that we never tasted.
We hosted our reception at the Balmoral Club, a private, members only club with the most gorgeous spread of green! Keeping up our garden theme, we had an outdoor reception on the lawn. We opted for a more formal/cocktail feel with designated seats for our family and open, lounge seating for our friends and other guests. We wanted people to relax and just enjoy themselves. Sit wherever they felt, meet new people and have fun! Our color scheme carried throughout the garden as well and was accented with couches, lamps, mirrors and throw pillows. I told my designer that I wanted to bring the indoors, outdoors! The father/daughter danced ended up with my dad serenading me to a medley of Stevie Wonder’s hits. We treated our guests to monogrammed luggage tags, so that they’d remember us on all their globe trottin’ adventures!
Six tiers and inspired by nature! These were my top two must haves for the wedding cake! And it ended up being so special too; the cake was designed by my sister a Bahamian executive pastry chef and brought to life by local boutique cake company Tier Cake Loft. My team knocked it out of the park with the design and execution. We opted for this Birchwood style look, that fits in perfectly with our garden theme, yes with lots of flowers. It was as delicious as it was beautiful and yes…we saved several slices to eat on the one year anniversary! We had alternating tiers of vanilla sponge cake with lemon filling and vanilla with coconut.
The party started in the garden but we also reserved the Balmoral’s clubhouse for the par-tay!!! We danced and sang along all night to the famous Bahamian Ting Um Dem Band and DJ AI who blasted our favorite hits. Before heading into the party though I took few minutes to catch a breather and swap into my party look. Same dress, but I was supposed to add these glitzy straps but…they went missing! I never ever found them. It was such a great time partying with our friends and loved ones and just jamming out as we celebrated our love, missing straps and all.
One of my favorite parts of the day was having my girls deliver my wedding day gift to husbae. So when we visited Thailand in 2017 he fell in love with the local beers there. When thinking up things to get him for wedding day, I knew a six-pack of either Singha or Chang beer would be perfect. I searched high and low (or so I thought) for a pack of either brand and could not find any locally. So my next option was to purchase abroad and ship them to me. Well let’s just say only three of the six bottles made it to me alive. The day after the wedding, I told my husband about the beer dilemma and that’s when he reminded me that a local restaurant carried Singha beer. I could’ve cried, but he was so impressed by my dedication!
Today as we celebrate six amazing months of marital bliss, this blog, these photos, these stories help us to look back at a time in our lives that was imperfectly ours. Now we look ahead to the future to six more months, six years, six lifetimes, together.
Wedding Cake: Tier Cake Loft
Videography: Neville Smith, Settler’s Cove and Glenwood Ferguson
Wedding planners: 4TheLoveofEvents
Dress: Platinum Bridal Couture + Apryl Jasmine
Decor: Bahama Fantasies
Hair: Salon Sade International
Makeup: Regina McCook
Bridesmaids Hair: Aline Cassandra
Disc Jockey: DJ AI