Bride Spotlight: Ali

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Happy, happy wedding week to Ali and Logan!!! I can’t believe their wedding week is here! We’ve been anticipating this one for well over a year, and the big day is so close now. From the moment Ali and Logan inquired with me, I was instantly excited to work with them, and the last year has been nothing but fun as we’ve planned and designed the wedding of their dreams at the Merrimon Wynne! I truly believe weddings should be a sincere reflection of each couple and that you should have a wedding that is reflective of the two of you, your interests, your style, and what you love most. Ali and Logan’s wedding will be the most fun, meaningful, romantic mix of who they are — so you can bet that the details and the entire day are going to be utterly phenomenal, so meaningful to these two, and such a sweet celebration of their love with their nearest and dearest family and friends.

It has been so fun to get to know Ali and Logan over the past year, to learn more about these two, and to witness their love for one another. You can bet that so many of their favorite things to do together will also be a part of their wedding! As much as I want to divulge all of the bespoke details and design right now, I’m going to try to wait til after their wedding so that their guests can fully enjoy everything. With a stunning palette of navy, dusty blues, mauve, burgundy, gold, romantic candlelight, and organic greenery, it’s going to be so beautiful in every way. Ali is also an incredibly talented invitation and stationery designer, and she created each and every paper detail of their wedding, including their invitation suite. It’s all utterly marvelous, and we’re all so excited to see these pieces come to life in mere days! Ali and Logan are also celebrating their wedding with many family and friends from Miami, where the bride is from, and we’ve meticulously planned their wedding to reflect who they are and where they come from. I’m pumped about the Southern meets Miami details we’re designed – from the menu to the cocktails to the dance party and more!

Ali and Logan, your wedding week is officially here, and I hope you feel nothing but an abundance of love, peace, and joy as you two are married and are celebrated with such deep joy and excitement! I know these two are so, so very excited to tie the knot and celebrate with their family and friends in Raleigh! It’s hard to put into words just how special Ali, Logan, and their families are and how utterly thrilled I am for them to be married this weekend… and to bring their dream wedding day to life with so many exceptional vendors! Truly, we’re working with such a dream team for Ali and Logan’s wedding day, and I cannot wait.


1. Tell us a little bit about you and your fiance, Logan.
Logan and I crossed paths on Tinder in 2016 while I was in town for a couple days looking for apartments in Raleigh for my move from Miami the following month. We clicked pretty instantly. Chatting every day leading up to my move, we developed a ton of inside jokes and learned we had a lot in common. We made plans to grab drinks the first Friday after my move, and we both definitely felt a bit of anxiety going into it, hoping we would have as much chemistry in person as we did over text. Spoiler alert: It was like we had known each other for years.
Logan and I have a lot in common, like our love of travel and sports of all kinds. We’re both very serious about our careers, both studied journalism but have moved away from it now, and we’re very close to our families. Our personalities, on the other hand, are pretty opposite. I am loud and outgoing, creative, a tinge cheeky, and a bit of a dreamer. Logan is quieter and more reserved, very witty, analytical, and an all around kind soul. We balance each other out and keep each other’s personalities in check.

2. What are you most excited for about your wedding day? Do you have a moment of your wedding day that you’re most anticipating?
I’m most excited to have all of our friends and family in one place – the city where we fell in love! I can’t wait for all of my friends to meet Logan’s friends and to dance the night away with all our favorite people.
The moment I am most anticipating is of course seeing Logan for the first time that day as I walk down the aisle to him. I can’t wait to see him looking incredibly dapper in his tuxedo, and I’m so excited for him to finally see me in my dress. That moment will really make everything so real for me.

3. What was your biggest inspiration for your wedding design?
We drew a lot of inspiration from the winter season and the rich colors of the Pacific Northwest where we got engaged. There are lots of dark jewel tones, gold, and pops of blush and slate blue featured in our design. We wanted to create something very elegant and romantic but also modern.

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4. Are you doing a first look or saving it for walking down the aisle?
Saving it for down the aisle! This was a no brainer for us. Logan is sticking to the old adage that it’s bad luck to see each other before the ceremony, and I just really love the romanticism of waiting to see each other for the first time that day until I’m walking down the aisle to him.

5. Describe your style in one word.
Chic!

6. What’s your favorite way to relax and unwind?
Relaxing and unwinding for us is cooking a delicious dinner to enjoy together over a glass of wine, followed by couch snuggles with our favorite monstrously large blanket and a good tv show or some good music. It’s how we like to end most of our days.

7. What is something you’re passionate about? What are some things you and Logan love to do together?
Logan and I are very passionate about traveling and experiencing new places together. It’s something we both loved and did before we met each other and certainly something that is a priority in our relationship. We’ve been to about six countries together so far, with three more lined up for our honeymoon, and explored countless US cities together. We love experiencing different cultures and especially different food!
When we’re not traveling, we love to explore Raleigh, watch lots of sports (especially UNC basketball and Florida football!), try new restaurants in town or recipes at home, and of course, spend time with family and friends.

8. What has been the biggest surprise in the wedding planning process?
The biggest surprise for us was all of the details that go into planning the ceremony. We had always envisioned a Catholic ceremony, which has a pretty rigid structure, and when that didn’t pan out because of our dates, we found ourselves having to make every decision for our ceremony. In some ways, it was really fun to make it truly special to us and our relationship, but it was a lot of decisions!

9. What is your favorite part of your wedding design?
Everything?! I am selfishly very excited to see all of the printed materials and signs on display since I did those myself and it was a major labor of love. I’m also incredibly excited about the reception design, from the plates and velvet linens we chose to the tapered candles and romantic loveseat for our sweetheart table. Inside the Merrimon Wynne house, I’m really excited for the fireplace mantels, which will each have a collection of special photos – one with photos from our childhood, one with photos with our grandparents, and one with our engagement photos. Seriously, I’m excited for every detail!

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10. What is your favorite thing about Logan?  
My favorite thing about Logan is his sense of humor. It’s not a loud, in-your-face sense of humor, but rather a more subtle wit and silliness that I love. He’ll do anything to make me laugh, and we’re able to turn even the most boring of situations into a good time together.

 

Stay tuned this weekend for sneak peeks from Ali and Logan’s romantic wedding, and you can see plenty of behind the scenes on my Instagram as we celebrate the marriage of these two! Love you two so very much!!!

gorgeous engagement session by Jordan Maunder Photography

Katie + Pace’s classic Carolina Inn wedding in Chapel Hill

Katie and Pace

Where do I even begin with this wedding?! Katie and Pace were married on a beautiful summer day in Chapel Hill, North Carolina surrounded by their family and friends, and it was perfection. Truly, this wedding holds the most special place in my heart for a myriad of reasons, and I think I’ll always look back on Katie and Pace’s wedding as one of the wedding days that had this certain magic about it. It was stunning and incredible in every way, from the weather to the flowers to the venues and settings to the food and dance party. But even more than all of those things, it was a day absolutely overflowing with love. There was so much genuine, heartfelt emotion, so many happy tears and huge smiles and bouts of laughter, so much love between and amongst both families and all of their friends, and an air of joyful celebration and excitement for Katie and Pace as they became husband and wife. Christ’s presence was felt so deeply and tangibly as Katie and Pace committed their lives to each other, as He was glorified in every detail and every moment, as their amazing family and friends celebrated their love and new marriage wholly, and everything as Katie and Pace always dreamt it would be. And now they’re MARRIED!

It’s hard to put into words just how special Katie, Pace, and their families are and how utterly thrilled I am for them to be married. It was such an honor and deep joy to be a part of the wedding planning process and their wedding day, as well as to be entrusted to bring their dream wedding day to life (alongside so many utterly talented wedding industry friends!). I have absolutely, positively loved getting to know Katie and Pace as a couple more and more throughout the wedding planning process over the last year, as well as their truly exceptional families. I was lucky enough to already know and love them and the Lowe family, as I planned Katie’s older sister Alex’s wedding the year prior! So you can only imagine how much of a dream it was when their incredible mom Suzie called me a month before Katie and Pace were engaged to let me know about their upcoming secret proposal and to make sure I was available! Their year-long engagement was filled with so much happiness and ease, and Katie, Pace, and Suzie made planning and designing their wedding so easy and so, so fun! Hop over to Katie’s bride spotlight to learn more about Katie and Pace, as well as their love story.

Katie and Pace are such fun, thoughtful, loving, and generous people, and they bring out the very best in one another. I love getting to witness a love like theirs, and it brings me the deepest joy seeing their wedding day unfold and their marriage begin. Their July wedding in Chapel Hill at University United Methodist Church and the Carolina Inn was the most joyful, spectacular, meaningful, personal, and beautiful day for two people who were clearly made for one another. As you’re about to see from the stunning images below from the incomparable Anagram Photo, Katie and Pace’s wedding day was wildly special, meaningful, gorgeous, and oh so remarkable in every way, and it was the perfect way to celebrate their new marriage with their beloved family and friends.

I am so grateful to have worked alongside a true dream team of vendors over the last year to create and design a plethora of custom, bespoke details and surprise touches for their guests, and oh my goodness, it was epic! Everything unfolded exactly as planned and without a hitch, and you could just sense how special every moment of their wedding day was.

Some of my very favorite moments of the wedding day:

  • Katie and her bridesmaids and their moms getting ready together at the Carolina Inn! Katie had a lot of bridesmaids and honorary bridesmaids, so it was a full house in the suite, and there was such a happy buzz of laughter and excitement – and a few happy tears! Pace’s wedding gift to Katie was incredibly special and thoughtful (and such a surprise), and I also loved watching Pace open his adorable gift from Katie: wedding socks with pictures of her face all over them! I also loved a quiet moment in the bridal suite bathroom with the Lowe ladies putting on their final touches with them. Suzie, Alex, Katie, and Maggie are so special to me, and being there for those moments was so sweet. Through the laughter and happy tears, it was the sweetest, most joyful wedding morning.
  • The ceremony, for sure. I cry at every wedding, and theirs was certainly no exception! You can just feel their slightly nervous but utterly excited energy, the calm, quiet moments right before lining up, the love of their wonderful wedding party and families. Being able to see Katie and her dad alone together before the ceremony was incredibly special and sentimental, as they are so, so close and Katie had dreamt of that moment her whole life. Happy tears just thinking about it again! And when the organ burst forth with its joyful song and the double doors opened at the back of the church… magic. Pace’s reaction when he saw Katie was what, I think, she had always dreamt of and prayed for. From the grand organ music to their dear friends playing acoustic worship music… to the special elements throughout their ceremony… to having her childhood pastor help marry them… to the beautiful (Carolina blue!), magnificent church… to their readings… to their vows, it was incredibly reverant, incredibly moving, and so very special in every way as their became husband and wife!
  • Katie always describes their wedding as “dusty blue and carbs” whenever anyone would ask about it as we were planning, and I love, love, love that description!! (Also a clear indication that working with Katie and her mom was meant to be — my kind of ladies!) It’s so true: we carried the dusty blue theme throughout the entire wedding design, from their bespoke invitation suite to all of their day-of paper details to their wedding welcome gifts to the wedding party attire to the linens at the Carolina Inn… and everything in between! Elegant dusty blue is a nod to their beloved Chapel Hill and Tar Heels (both are graduates and have families with a deep, deep love of both UNC and Chapel Hill), and it looked stunning at every turn. Their entire wedding reception menu was scrumptious and had plenty of delicious Southern carbs, which Katie and Pace particularly adore (and I think every guest did, too!). And to top off the reception, we had a surprise late night snack: my team picked up 300 Bojangles biscuits, both cajun filet and boberry biscuits, and the staff brought the Bojangles biscuits into the dance floor ballroom on silver platters as the groom announced into the microphone, “It’s BO time!” — yes! It was such a fun (and delicious!) moment in the midst of the most epic dance floor, and I think the guests loved their late night snack more than usual!
  • One of my personal favorite moments of a wedding day is always the reception reveal, and I was looking forward to this one in particular! Katie, her mom Suzie, and I poured so, so, so much thought, meaning, and intention into countless details and looked forward to their wedding — and reception design — so very much. Getting to see all of those ideas, dreams, and plans come to life, and for your own wedding (or your daughter’s wedding!), is a true dream come true. I was able to do a reception reveal with both Suzie (and the other three parents!) and then with Katie and Pace, and I can’t even put into words how magical those moments were and how much giddiness there was!! The ballroom where dinner was held was pure perfection and is, quite honestly, the reception design I’m most proud of. I also adore these families so, so very much, so it was a highlight of my career. It’s also so fun to see their reactions in person and watch them take it in… and knowing it’s for their wedding!! These are moments that I certainly won’t forget, and I cannot thank my team and the other vendor teams enough for pouring their hearts and souls into the setup and logistics, too. Such a pinch me moment, for both Katie and Pace, their parents, and even myself!
  • The flowers! Oh my. The flowers! Petal and Oak did a magnificent job bringing these designs to life in the most incredible of ways. There were an abundance of flowers on every surface, and it was just beautiful. The tall, lush, towering flowers at the head tables (we had three head tables for 55 people!) were everything and more, and they literally took my breath away once they were installed! It was such a dramatic, elegant, stunning focal point and really set the tone for their wedding. I loved that there were so many guests that we used two ballrooms throughout the evening. The dinner for 300 guests in one ballroom was filled with gorgeous dusty blue linens, so many personalized details, lush and beautiful floral arrangements, the most delicious wedding cake that matched the wedding design perfectly, romantic candlelight, an utterly amazing dinner (lots of Southern favorites!), and so many joyful moments.
  • I could share a million more memories and details with you, but this is getting long enough already, and hopefully the following pictures (and their wedding film at the bottom, too!) are the perfect representation of all of the pure love and joy that flowed throughout the most beautiful, special wedding day. I say it all the time, but it still stands so true: as stunning as Katie and Pace’s wedding day was, it was just the start of what matters the most — a joy-filled and loving marriage to one another. That is the good stuff, and I am so happy that day one of their marriage was such a beautiful representation of their love!

Katie and Pace, you’re married!! I hope you two feel nothing but an abundance of love and pure joy as you were married and celebrated with such profound happiness and excitement! Thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for welcoming me into your engagement and allowing me to be a part of your wedding planning process and wedding day. You two and your families make me fall in love with wedding planning all over again, and I am forever grateful for y’all, your families, and the happiest memories from your wedding. So, so much love to you two!

Katie and Pace

Katie and Pace

Katie and Pace

Katie and Pace

Katie and Pace

Katie and Pace

Katie and Pace

If you’d like to take a peek into Katie and Pace’s absolutely incredible and moving wedding day film from The Family Films, you can take a peek at it here! I still can’t watch it without crying happy tears!!

It was an epic, incredibly fun, and stunningly beautiful celebration for these two amazing people as they because husband and wife on such a pretty summer day in their beloved Chapel Hill! The dance floor was utterly packed all night long, the Bojangles biscuits were such a delicious and fun hit, all of Katie’s “dusty blue and carbs” Southern wedding dreams came true, the love and joy was so very palpable, and their sparkler exit was such a special end to their wedding day. I can’t rave enough about Katie, Pace, their families, and their friends — it was such a remarkable, amazing wedding, and I am eternally grateful to have been a part of it. This wedding, and these people, hold a very special place in my heart!

Cheers to the new Sagesters, and endless congrats, you two!! I adore you both — and wishing you a lifetime of joy and love as you begin your married life together!

It was such a joy working alongside some truly fantastic vendors, and we had an incredible dream team. There are so many people and teams who worked tirelessly to selflessly serve this couple on their wedding day, and I can’t thank them all enough!

Photography Anagram Photo

Videography The Family Films

Wedding planning, design, and styling Stephanie Shaul Events

Church University United Methodist Church

Reception venue + catering Carolina Inn

Florals Petal + Oak

Linens CE Rental

DJ Bunn DJ Co.

Cake Ashley Cakes

Hair + makeup Brittany Berrier Hair

Calligraphy on the seating chart + food menu Mason Dixon Designs

Invitations Minted and Haylily Designs

Wedding day paper details Haylily Designs

Dress Gilded Bridal with alterations by Marie Cordella