Photography by Virgil Bunao.
This Charleston wedding is a really fabulous mix of old school Southern romance (that cathedral length veil and historic venue) and modern design details (unstructured red florals and an amazing hanging fabric installation). As gorgeous as it all looks, what got me most of all was Anna’s honesty. She told it exactly like it is, from not having time to DIY – thanks to that little thing known as studying for the bar exam! – to even now wishing they hadn’t had to deal with Tropical Storm Bonnie, no matter how sweet the rain made her pictures. We like a bride who knows what she wants, even if I have to disagree about the weather – you’ll know just what I mean when you see handsome husband Cody holding an umbrella over her as they exit in the rain…
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? I did include something old – my grandmother’s amethyst necklace, which we wrapped around the base of my bouquet.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? Just let the day happen and try to remember every part of it. You can’t have it all be perfect and you’re not going to remember the tiny details, but the excitement and joy of the day. At the end of the day, even if something didn’t go perfectly to plan, you still married the love of your life!
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? We both went to school in Charleston (MUSC for him and Charleston School of Law for me). Cody doesn’t get much time off, so we figured a wedding local to us would be the best choice; also, who doesn’t love Charleston?
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? The beautiful plantation home and views overlooking the Ashley River.
Your ceremony in three words. Nostalgic, romantic, celebratory.
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of your wedding? I would just like to say that I had the most amazing wedding planner in Melissa — she actually crouched behind me and carried my train and veil going down the aisle so it wouldn’t drag in the puddles. You can’t even see her in the pictures—truly amazing!
What was your ceremony music? I walked out to an instrumental version of Wond’ring Aloud by Jethro Tull, performed by our string quartet. That song is very special to me.
How did you go about planning your ceremony? Melissa at A Charleston Bride helped me a lot. She gave me some templates and I was able to take the best parts of them to make something that reflected our relationship best. We aren’t super traditional or religious, so we wanted something romantic and symbolic without being stuffy.
Who officiated your ceremony? How did you choose him/her? My uncle, the Honorable Jesse McCall, is a retired Magistrate Judge and officiated our ceremony.
Did you include any traditions in your ceremony? We included a reading, but went with a poem rather than a Bible verse.
What were your ceremony readings? Pablo Neruda’s Sonnet XVII.
What were your vows like? Melissa gave us some sample vows and we found a couple that we were able to splice together to truly reflect our love. The most meaningful line for us was “Where you go, I go.” A couple of months after we got married, I had to move to Atlanta for a job while Cody finished up his last year of medical school. Being long distance for nine months after we got married was difficult but our hearts were always together, just like in that part of our vows.
What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony? Marrying the love of my life, surrounded by our friends and family who braved Tropical Storm Bonnie to be with us!
How would you describe your reception? Elegant and fun!
A Charleston Bride created a wall of mismatched picture frames to display the seating assignments.
Are there any DIY details you’d like to tell us about? I graduated from law school three weeks before the wedding and started studying for the Bar Exam the week before, so I pretty much shunned any DIY!
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? I did not do a very good job with budgeting, so I’m probably the wrong person to ask (ha!)
What was your favorite moment or part of the reception? Our dinner — we shared a long banquet style table with all of our bridal party.
What type of cake or dessert did you serve? I had a trio of cakes: one traditional chocolate with banana frosting, one passion fruit with vanilla frosting, and one lemon with lemon curd and blueberries on top.
Please tell us about any other special details from your reception. Our cake topper was a custom paper sculpture made to look like my husband and I, and our two wiener dogs. They nailed it — down to the Brackish Bow Tie that ‘cake Cody’ wore and the beadwork on ‘my’ dress.
What was your first dance song? Father/daughter or mother/son dance? Ours was Van Morrison’s Into the Mystic, Father Daughter was Unforgettable by Nat King Cole and Natalie Cole, and Mother Son was My Wish by Rascal Flatts.