Meaghan + Edward | Nov 2, 2019
Garden party with a color palette of navy, white and gold accents at The Merrimon-Wynne House in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina
Meaghan met Edward during their sophomore year of college, when he visited her school, Elon University, with his roommate from the Virginia Military Institute. They went on a group dinner, and then he continued tagging along with his friend back to Elon. After hanging out a few more times in a group setting, she finally said yes to a dinner date - just the two of them. The two made it official shortly after that, and have been together ever since.
“On our six-year anniversary, Edward planned a date night at one of our favorite Mexican restaurants in New York City,” said Meaghan. “We had previously agreed on no gifts, but he told me to be ready to go early.”
She was a bit suspicious about this, as she got dressed and ready to join him for the evening. Before leaving, he sat her down in their living room and revealed a slideshow of photos from the past six years. He then told her that he did in fact get her a small gift, and got down on one knee to propose!
Their wedding was elegant and classic, held on the lawn at a charming, historic house in downtown Raleigh. Infused with modern décor and a color palette of navy and gold with touches of green and white, the garden party inspiration created a storybook soirée.
“Since Edward is from Virginia and my family largely resides in New York/Connecticut, we decided on a destination wedding in North Carolina, where we first met!” said Meaghan.
Inside the luxurious bridal suite, Meaghan’s bridesmaids put on their high-neck, form-fitting navy gowns that really met the classic yet modern aesthetic the bride had envisioned. Once her hair and makeup was ready, Meaghan picked up her gown that was hanging delicately from an antique gold mirror over a Victorian fireplace.
Meaghan descended the grand staircase, with railings intertwined with ivy, in a stunning ivory princess cut gown with a full tulle skirt and a lace bodice. She wore a cathedral-length veil that cascaded down her back against her blonde curls, and a pair of glittery pointed-toe pumps.
“I was a bit indecisive about the skirt,” said Meaghan, “but was completely sold once the designer confirmed they would be able to design the dress with a tulle skirt instead.”
Edward and his groomsmen decided on classic, black and white tuxedos with simple green, single bud boutonnieres. Once he was suited up, he stepped outside and waited eagerly to see Meaghan in her wedding dress.
“While there were many special moments throughout the day, our first look was truly the best,” said Meaghan. “I was so excited to finally see him and have a private moment before our ceremony.”
The couple decided to exchange sentimental gifts during this time, so Meaghan gifted Edward a small photo pin of his late father that he could tuck into his tux above his heart. He surprised her with a book of selfies they had taken throughout the years, and brought an Instax camera so they could capture that moment together, too.
“While our gifts each brought two very different types of emotions, photos are very important to us both and this moment was such a special part of our day,” said Meaghan.
In the lawn in front of the mansion, full of rich history and grandeur, the ceremony took place under a clear tent with chiffon drapery and twinkling lights, surrounded by quintessential southern pecan trees. At the altar, there was an enchanting backdrop created by luscious greenery and florals climbing up hanging white drapery.
“The emotion of the day and the romantic garden feel were a particularly memorable part of this wedding day,” said the photographer.
The florals were all neutral shades, matching the bridal bouquet filled with white roses and subtle touches of other white flowers, including Lily of the Valley - a family tradition. With her bouquet in hand, Meaghan linked her arm around her father’s, and waltzed down the aisle to stand before her soon-to-be husband.
During this timeless, romantic and nontraditional ceremony, Meaghan and Edward incorporated as many personal touches as possible. They wrote the entire ceremony script together, while the bride’s uncle officiated the service.
"From the gorgeous florals, including greenery perfectly placed on the ceremony backdrop, fireplace mantles and staircase, cozy lounges with pink velvet couches and twinkling candles and lights under the clear tent, our wedding was more beautiful than I could have ever imagined,” said Meaghan.
After the ceremony, the lawn was transformed into a cozy and romantic al fresco dinner under the stars to kick off the reception. There were round tables set with ivory linens, Chiavari chairs, twinkling candles, floral centerpieces, single bud arrangements and an elegant tablescape design. Out on the pergola, a luxe lounge area was set up with cream tufted ottomans, ivory upholstered armchairs, a blush velvet sofa with plush navy pillows and a gold accent table.
Inside the carriage house, boasting grand crystal chandeliers, exposed beams and rolling glass doors that opened to the pergola and lawn, there was fresh greenery on white rope hanging across the rafters right above the dance floor. The white wooden Victorian bar was adorned with sprawling ivy, serving bubbly sips with cocktail napkins stamped with a gold foil print of their precious Labrador Retriever.
Following a decadent dinner, sentimental toasts, the first dance and parent dances, Meaghan and Edward joined their friends and families on the dance floor where they kept the party going all night long with the most lively band...only taking a break when it was time to cut the cake!
Their wedding cake, perched on a champagne-colored, satin tablecloth and surrounded by sprays of greenery and floating rose buds, was a four-tiered cake with ribbed cream frosting and gold ribbon trim at the base of each tier.
At the beginning of the reception, guests received welcome bags containing snacks that nodded to the couple’s home states - Virginia nuts and cookies founded in New York - with a tag featuring a gold foil print of their Labrador Retriever. When the night came to a close, they surprised their guests with Chick-fil-A for a fun late night snack!
After a few more twirls and dips on the dance floor, their loved ones lined up with full hearts and sparklers in hand, giving Meaghan and Edward the magical sendoff all newlyweds dream of.
“Enjoy every single moment - both while planning and when your wedding day finally arrives,” said Meaghan, “because it truly goes by so quickly.”
Congratulations to the new Mr. and Mrs.!
Looking for the perfect photographer for your special day? Check out our list of vetted vendors HERE!
Amanda & Grady Photography
The Merrimon-Wynne House
Oak City Films
The Black Tux
The Cupcake Shoppe
Arioso Strings Inc.
Right to Party
Rentals & Decor
Tease + Blush
Rocky Top Catering