Samantha and Cody’s wedding is extra special, because the bride, Samantha, is a blogger for us here at Grey Likes, over on our Blogstress Maven blog. Using her pen name, “Lady Brunette,” Samantha shared with us her wedding planning process, which you can catch up on here. We are so excited to share her and Cody’s wedding, shot by Aly Carroll Photography.
What made the wedding special and unique?
Between swapping out reception venues halfway through planning, finding a pre-owned wedding dress from across the world, to capturing every DIY down to the last detail, our wedding was a true labor of love! We have so many friends and family we wanted involved in our very traditional Catholic wedding, we ended up with over 300 guests in attendance and our bridal party brimming with all of our best friends and in the end we wanted and received, one big celebration!
Tell us about the dress and where/how you found it!
The dress may be my favorite detail from our wedding; I cannot stop gushing about this! I tell people it took planes, trains, and automobiles to get to me. We were getting ready to leave for another dress store when I stumbled upon it on the ‘forbidden/do-not-step-close-to-this-very-expensive rack’. It hit all the points I was looking for in a dress that up until that moment didn’t exist in all the others. After trying it on with much encouragement from one of my maids-of-honor and mom, I immediately burst into tears. I finally had “the” moment, which I didn’t think would happen. The dress ended up being way over budget. However, though I don’t recommend to most brides, I ended up finding the dress, pre-owned and never worn, for half the cost from a woman in Switzerland. Using a pre-owned wedding website, we negotiated the price and shipping and within 24 hours I had my dress – all of 10 sizes too big. I ended up taking it to a local tailor and they fit it perfectly to my frame! For more dress details…click here!
What were some touches added to make it personal?
Cody let me have free reign when it came to personal touches of décor, colors, and flower choices (peonies, of course). We stuck within the realm of navy, blush pinks, and gold accents. Very traditional and romantic! I crafted my way through our entire wedding between the seating chart, chalkboard and floral signs, table numbers, and a true labor of love, our entire invitation suite, just to name a few things!
Cody also incorporated the love letters my grandparents wrote to one another when they were engaged in the 1940s (talk about tears!) and I attached my late grandma’s ring to my bouquet as my something ‘old’.
Instead of the traditional unity candle lighting, our priest let us have a wine box ceremony, officiated by my aunt. We wrote letters to one another five years in the future, to be opened on our fifth wedding anniversary. The letters and a bottle of red were sealed in a custom box!
What was the most memorable part of the day?
How do you even pick? For me, sealing the deal with our first kiss! Cody gave me a quick kiss but I pulled him back in for one more! It’s our day – who says you shouldn’t have two first kisses? But truly spending one of the most magical days with the love of my life, surrounded by our friends and family!
Tell us how you met and became engaged.
Cody and I met the day before freshman year started in 2006, we both lived in the same dorm. We dated on and off for 2 years before making it officially our junior year and have been together ever since! He proposed in December 2012, right before Christmas (more on that story here!). Due to my brother’s wedding that following April, we choose to have ours the following year to help offset expenses for all families involved! Let me tell you, a year and a half is a long time to plan! (Read the whole story here!!!)
Vendors: Photography: Aly Carroll Photography // Videography: Katherine Mendieta Photography // Venue: St. Boniface Catholic Church // Reception: Sheraton West Des Moines // Styling & Paper Goods: StyleEsque // Florals: Bliss // Bakery: The Bake Shoppe // Hair and Make Up: Penelopie Beauty Bar // Bride’s Dress: Reem Acra // Bridesmaid Dresses: BHLDN // Groomsmen: Vera Wang, Men’s Wearhouse