How did you all meet?
In 2001, Marcus and I met through a mutual friend. He attended Hampton University and I went to Norfolk State University. We would always run into each other at parties and sporting events. We dated briefly in 2004. After we both graduated in 2005 we continued to stay in touch over the years via social media and reconnected in 2013 and began dating again. In July 2018, while on a family vacation with my entire family in Las Vegas, we took a road trip to the Grand Canyon. Marcus was acting a bit funny that day, but I thought maybe it was the 4-hour drive in the 15 passenger van. While we were admiring the sights we decided to take a picture. As we were “saying cheese” Marcus got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. The onlookers included my son, mom, grandparents, sister, nephew, and aunt and uncle. The proposal took me by complete surprise and I gazed at my engagement ring the entire 4 hour trip around the mountains to Vegas from Arizona.
Anything super unique about the big day?
We honestly can’t choose because every single moment of our day was perfect. The ceremony was designed just for us and to have all of our family and friends there to witness our union meant the world to us. The reception was a PARTY and it was exactly how we envisioned it.
Where did you all go on your honeymoon?
We traveled around the world in 14 days, literally. We were able to see places like Dubai and Singapore and it was amazing. We spent days in Phuket and Bangkok, Thailand as well as Bali!
Any tips you would share with other couples getting married? Enjoy every minute of the planning process because the wedding day will go by so fast. Make sure to still make time to have a date night and take a break from planning sometimes.
What was your planning experience like?
Yes! Antonia Baker was exactly what I needed. I’m the planner of the family and it was helpful to have someone to bounce ideas off of and guide me to make sure my wedding dreams became a reality. She ensured that everything I wanted was present that day and that I was able to enjoy the moment and not worry.
Where did you wed and why did you pick the venue/site?
We were married at the Washington Dulles Hilton Hotel and it was just a great fit. Our planner recommended the site and it was able to accommodate our date and allowed us to host both our wedding and reception in the same place. An added bonus was that our guests were able to lodge there and didn’t have to travel after the festivities.
Tell us about the wedding dress!
It was important to me to use black vendors for every aspect of my day, the double blessing was that I was able to purchase from my line sister’s bridal store. I found my dress at Cherry Blossom Bridal in the Capitol Hill area of DC and it such an amazing experience. I’d tried on dresses the Saturday before I selected my dress, but when I saw myself in the veil and heard the song I was walking down the aisle to I knew it was the one. It’s a soft champagne dress with a hint of pink that accentuated my curves and sparkled under the lights with intricate beading. My favorite part of my ensemble that day was my nails! I wanted every detail of that day to be perfect and they were the thing that made me smile.
Describe the Groom’s and Groomsmen look
I wanted my guys to look as good as me and I knew I wanted to be as smooth as 007. We went with a slim fit navy blue tux with lapel for the guys while, I wore a white tux jacket with a matching black lapel. I wanted to also ensure that my own personal style shined throughout the evening so my guys and I changed into our favorite pair of Jordan’s to end the night with a bang. I went with a classic pair of the “Cap and Gown” 13’s and my goals were achieved.
Your Wedding Style
Tell us about your ceremony décor.
Flowers, flowers, flowers! We wanted the ceremony space to elegant and classic. It was important to see the colors expressed throughout the day and that was accomplished by the use of flowers and decor that focused everyone’s attention on us.
During the ceremony did you use and religious or cultural elements or traditions?
Yes, we did the tasting of the four elements at our wedding ceremony. It’s a wedding ceremony tradition taken from the Yoruba culture in West Africa. The ceremony is said to represent the promise to love your partner “for better or worse, for richer or poorer, in sickness and in health.” Vinegar, lemon, cayenne pepper, and honey are traditional choices used to represent the bitter, sour, hot, and, of course, sweet parts of life and a new marriage.
What inspired your reception style?
Again, we wanted the color scheme to be a part of every aspect of our day, so it was important to have floral arrangements at the center of attention that blended well. The dance floor was a last-minute “Mommy, please?” request! I really didn’t want to have a plain brown dance floor, so we were able to get something as unique as us!
No traditional favors, but we did provide our family and friends with a photo booth so that they could have their own memories from the night.