Emily first reached out to us back in early August of 2015 (that feels like forever ago now!) to inquire about a fall wedding of the next year. She had nothing decided upon yet (no date or venue) and knew she would need help with the whole gambit. So, we set up a meeting and I (Jessica) met with her, her fiance Luke, and her parents at none other than Starbucks. It was pretty evident right away that they were needing our Full Planning package. So by the end of the meeting, we had decided on some venues we’d like to tour first. Somewhere in downtown Raleigh was ideal, and it wasn’t long before everyone fell in love with the Merrimon-Wynne House. At that point, the Carriage House was just a concept, but Emily and Luke trusted it would be perfect when finished for their special day. Only a few fall Saturdays were still available, so after sleeping on it they selected October 29th of 2016! After the venue and date were locked in, we blazed a trail through vendors. Being this was our Full Planning package, I did all the research for them, set up appointments, and attended appointments with them and helped them every step of the way. It was so fun getting to work with them (and Emily’s parents – specifically her dad, Mark, who seemed born to help plan a wedding with his organizing skills!) I truly value the relationship I form with all of my clients, but the Full Planning ones hold a special place in my heart, and it’s always sad when their big day is over because we were so used to seeing each other!
I knew from the start that Emily’s vision was going to look STUNNING at the Merrimon-Wynne. She has loved the color navy ever since she was little, and all she wanted was a classic and elegant wedding with navy accents. Don’t get me wrong, I love all the wedding trends and “out of the box” ideas, but sometimes I really enjoy getting to be a part of a wedding that will remain classic for years to come.
After conducting the rehearsal at St. Michael’s Catholic Church in Cary, close family and friends had a private dinner at the roof top space of Raleigh Times Bar with delicious food from The Pit. The night didn’t go on too long as the wedding party had to be up pretty early the next day.
After getting some rest, the bridal party started getting ready around 8:30AM to prepare for the ceremony at 1PM. The girls enjoyed brunch and getting pampered all while in their custom PJs from Emily. Once everyone was ready, the bridal party departed the Merrimon-Wynne and headed to the church, where Emily and Luke would pledge their lives to one another in front of their closest friends and family. I actually got to sit in a pew and witness two become one, and let me tell you, it brought a tear to my eye.
Since the cocktail hour was not to begin until 5PM, guests got to have an afternoon to relax and recharge for the big night, while the bridal party knocked out some photos (and consumed some Starbucks: hello my people!) before heading to the Merrimon-Wynne to prepare for their grand entrance. After a few hours had passed, guests began arriving to the Merrimon-Wynne to enjoy a gorgeous late afternoon cocktail hour on the lawn and in the house. It was the perfect day: sunny and mild! Once the bridal party were introduced, first dances were done and plated meals were served. Once dinner service was through, the band turned up the volume and the dancing began! This fun loving crowd had a blast on the dance floor and Emily and Luke were beaming with happiness. Once the night was finished, they jetted away in a Rickshaw to the after party back at the Raleigh Times (Emily changed into a white romper, and let me tell you it was fabulous). After they departed, I was a little sad our 15 months of planning were through.. but it didn’t outweigh my happiness for them as they cycled off into their “happily ever after”.
Emily and Luke, THANK YOU. Thank you for allowing me to be a part of your love story. I so enjoyed every minute. I wish you a long lasting life together filled with laughter, joy, and a little bit of silliness!
Ceremony Location: St. Michael’s Church
Caterer: 214 Martin
Photographer: Annie Watts Photography
Videographer: Honeydew Films
Florist: MEWS Designs
Cake: Buttercreams Bakeshop
Band: Big Love
Rentals: CE Rental
Hair: Blown Away
Makeup: Stephanie Searor of Flawless Impressions
Rickshaw: Raleigh Rickshaw