Anna + Charles | May 11, 2019
A light and dusty blue palette mixed with fresh florals at Neuse Breeze waterfront estate in New Bern, North Carolina
While working as resident advisors at Guilford College, Charles and Anna knew they were meant to be together. Two days before graduation, Charles planned a relaxing getaway for Anna to celebrate the end of final exams.
During their first night on the Crystal Coast, Charles set up a blanket down on the beach so they could watch the sunset. He popped the question and it couldn’t have been more romantic! When the couple returned from the beach, they spent time with their families (it was the first time they were all in one place) to celebrate the engagement.
From the beginning the bride was inspired by the couple’s home décor, so she aimed to keep things simple with white florals and lots of greenery. They planned their special day for early June, and it had a timeless and natural feel to it.
“We’ve always kept fresh, bright flowers in our kitchen and dining room,” Anna explained. “We wanted everything about the day to reflect our style: airy and classic.”
The day began with Anna and her two bridesmaids getting primped in the bridal suite. After their updos were pinned into place, they stepped outside for a few portraits in their lace-trimmed robes.
Then, it was time for Anna to slip into her cap-sleeved ballgown with lace detailing. The dress had a deep V-neckline and a full tulle skirt, which perfectly complemented Anna’s traditional veil.
“I shopped for quite a few months in Pittsburgh, and I ended up buying the very first dress I ever tried on,” the bride said. “We ended up reconstructing the top of the dress completely with the help of a seamstress, so it is completely one-of-a-kind!”
To complete the look, Anna wore a flower crown full of baby’s breath and white roses. Her two bridesmaids sported the same baby’s breath arrangement in their hair, and they looked simply elegant in their short-sleeve steel blue dresses.
To go along with her floral accessories, Anna’s bouquet was mixed with more white roses and baby’s breath with a few peonies and eucalyptus scattered throughout. The romantic feel of the florals carried into the décor at the ceremony site.
The quaint outdoor ceremony was set at a waterfront estate overlooking the Neuse River. With its white wood pillars and drapery, the setup looked like a dream. Guests entered the ceremony through an antique silver gate placed at the entrance of the aisle.
“The gates at the entrance were brand new and beautifully covered with our same florals,” Anna explained. “They made for amazing pictures for the wedding party and guests!”
The aisle was lined with white rose petals, adding to the romantic feel of the ceremony. Next to every other pew was a hanging white antique lantern filled with baby’s breath and hydrangeas. At the end of the aisle was an arch filled with lush greenery and florals. Below the arch hung a silver chandelier, adding a touch of elegance to the ceremony backdrop.
As guests took their seats in the white pews, Charles and his groomsmen made their way down the aisle wearing matching charcoal tuxedos and steel blue ties that mimicked the bridesmaid’s dresses. Each groomsman wore a boutonniere that had a single white rose and accenting greenery.
After the rest of the bridal party took their places in front of the arch, Anna entered arm in arm with her father. As she locked eyes with her groom, the special moment was nothing short of magical.
“Charles and I both agree that the best part of the day was seeing finally each other when I walked down the aisle,” Anna said. “Everything felt so right in that moment, and it was truly unforgettable.”
The ceremony was officiated by the groom’s uncle, adding a personal touch to the service. The couple exchanged handwritten vows, and their love for one another truly showed. After a prayer led by the officiant, the couple shared their first kiss as husband and wife!
While the rest of the guests headed to the pavilion for the cocktail hour, the couple stuck around for portraits with their bridal party in front of the arch. Once those were finished, Anna and Charles walked the grounds of the estate, sharing a few intimate moments together.
A ways off, there was a beautiful open air bell tower. Inside the entrance hung a circular swing with tied branches and filled with loose greenery. As the bride posed in front of the swing, all of the ivory florals complemented her romantic look perfectly.
The couple decided to get a closer look of the Neuse and headed down to the shoreline. They kissed along the water, and the sand added to the airy feel of the portraits.
As Anna and Charles made their way back from the water, the final touches were added to the reception space on the porch. Hanging from the porch ceiling was a crystal chandelier, along with two arrangements on either side of the fixture. To keep with the floral theme, each arrangement was filled with more hydrangeas, baby’s breath and roses.
Guests took their seats at rectangular white wooden reception tables that were draped with white chiffon table runners. At the center of each table was a floral arrangement that mimicked the rest of the flowers featured throughout the day. The centerpieces varied in height, as some were placed in glass trumpet vases while others laid directly on the table. To complete the look, each chair was tied with an ivory bow.
Each place setting had a vintage ivory plate with textured linens along the rim, adding an antique touch to the simple setup. On top of each plate was a folded ivory napkin with a piece of greenery tucked inside.
After dinner, guests headed back to the open pavilion for the couple’s first dance. The romantic setup was complete with string lights and a stone fireplace, surrounded by natural greenery. Displayed on the hearth were the first letters of the couple’s names, adding a personal touch to the outdoor area.
Once the father-daughter and mother-son dances were finished, it was time to cut the cake. The two-tiered naked cake was simple and elegant, with just a touch of ivory piping at the bottom. The same florals used in the rest of the décor made their appearance on the cake, tying in the color palette perfectly.
The rest of the night was filled with more dancing, great music and fun! As the sun set on the perfect day, the couple shared one last dance and made their exit through a line of sparklers.
Congrats to the new Mr. and Mrs.!
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