Mary Kate and her mother contacted us last August for help with planning their wedding at Daniel Chapel (Furman University) and The Cliffs at Mountain Park. Through that conversation with these lovely women, I knew that we would both be a great fit for each other. While helping Mary Kate and Charlie plan their wedding, we got to know their families well, and couldn't wait for the big day.
It was an early March wedding, and the weather was looking iffy - rain and cold weather were both forecasted. The morning was chilly, and while there was a tiny bit of rain, the skies opened for the ceremony and reception, and everything was perfect. After their beautiful ceremony, guests, family, and the wedding party filled the Cart Barn at The Cliffs at Mountain Park for a night of dinner, drinks, and LOTS of dancing. One of our favorite moments was at the end of the night when Charlie jumped up on stage with the band and dances his heart out to "Teach Me How to Dougie." After guests sent off the newlyweds with a sparkler exit in a golf cart, grabbed a warm Chick-fil-A cookie, everyone left with smiles on their faces. It was a perfect day for a perfect couple.
Josh Rigsby captured the day beautifully, and Mary Kate told us about the wedding planning and day from her perspective. Enjoy!!
How did you two meet? Charlie and I met our freshman year at Samford University on a Spring Break trip. We had met before at a sorority function, and even sat next to each other at dinner! Neither of us really remember it. But it wasn't until Spring Break that our friends started to hang out. It wasn't long after we got back to Samford and with a little help from some meddling friends, he finally asked me out.
How long have you been together? When we got married, we had been dating just shy of four years.
What was your favorite moment and/or detail from your wedding? Our wedding day was everything we could've hoped for! From getting to relax and get ready with my best friends, to the first look, to the reception, to the sparklers send off, it's hard to pick one favorite part! One part that we both loved was during our ceremony. We had just taken communion together, and had a moment to stand hand in hand, worshipping our Lord with all of our loved ones as we sang All I Have is Christ. It was such a sweet moment for us to reflect on the covenant of marriage we had just entered.
How was your experience working with us for your wedding? My mom and I always talk about how having Bespoken was the best investment of our entire wedding. It was worth every penny, and so much more! We used the Day Of planning but Shannon came alongside around 3 or so months out which was perfect. I felt like she knew exactly what we wanted for every detail of everything. She was so organized and had thought of every detail for our wedding day before the thought had even come into my head! I knew that on the day of, there was absolutely nothing that to worry about it and it was so stress-free, all thanks to Bespoken.
What would you have done differently during your planning process? There isn't a single thing that Bespoken could have done differently in our planning process. I couldn't change a thing!
How would you describe your overall wedding experience? Our overall wedding experience was perfect. It was so stress-free, and every person that was a part of it made it so special. It's just the only time in your life where all of your people get to be in one place!
Did you see each other before the wedding? If not, did you like waiting, or would you have done it differently? Tell us why and why not! We decided to do a first look, originally because our wedding was the night of Daylight Saving Time. We wouldn't have had much daylight to take pictures afterwards. I'm so glad we ended up doing a first look though! I'm a crier. And an ugly one too! I think it eased a lot of my emotions, and was a sweet time for Charlie and I to just be together.
Tell us about your dress! Where did you find it, how did you choose it, and how did you know it was "the one"? I had no clue what kind of dress that I wanted! I live in Birmingham, AL and my mom was coming in town for a day or two. We had talked about driving to Atlanta to go look at some dresses but we randomly decided to call Bustle in Birmingham to just see if they had anything. We went that day to go try one a few dresses! What a task for someone who had no clue what she wanted. Meredith, the bridal consultant, was so fabulous! I tried on 4 dresses, and walked out the door with my dress that day. I look pretty young so I knew I wanted something that made me look more of my age. My dress was an all lace, kind of V necklace, Theia gown. It was fitted to just below my bottom, and just flowed down from there. It was so comfortable, which was my top priority! It had an open back, with the most gorgeous eyelashes on the ends of the lace. I never it was the one when I couldn't think of any reason why I didn't love it!
What was the first song you danced to as Newlyweds? Father-Daughter Dance song? Mother-Son Dance Song? Our first dance song was "Touching Heaven" by Johnnyswim. My dad and I danced to "Have I Told You Lately", and Charlie and his mother danced to "How Sweet It Is."
What were you most anxious, nervous, or fearful about regarding your wedding day, and what was the outcome? I don't really think there was anything I was worried about. I had a lot of peace on our wedding day! It did rain but it held off for a little bit as we were coming in and out of the chapel. It made for an incredible, post-rain sunset.
What wedding planning advice would you offer to couples who are currently planning their wedding? First and foremost, hire Shannon Royal and the Bespoken team! But also just remember that it's about the marriage, and if all else crumbles, all you really need is the minister, the groom, and yourself.
Any tips on what to bring/pack for your wedding day? We had an emergency bag filled with Hollywood tape, Tide-to-Go, bandaids, bobby pins, Tums, no show panties, etc. Hopefully you don't need anything, but if you do, you're prepared!
Any tips on how to prepare to work with Bespoken? In preparing to work with Bespoken, I think just trusting them and knowing that they're doing their best, and that this isn't their first wedding! Shannon has so much knowledgable, and being open to different ideas, layouts, whatever it may be!
Planner: Bespoken / Photographer: Josh Rigsby / Ceremony Venue: Daniel Chapel at Furman University / Reception Venue: The Cliffs at Mountain Park / Caterer and Bartender: The Cliffs / Florist: Greg Foster / Band: Mo Sol with Sam Hill Entertainment / Hair and Makeup Artist: Cotton Rouge / Baker: The Bakery Off Augusta