Ceremony & Reception Venue: The Brass on Baltimore     Photographer: The Gray’s Photography     Wedding Coordinator: Nellie Sparkman Events     Menswear: The Black Tux     Hair & Makeup: White Carpet Bride     Ceremony Musicians: Trio Fontana     Florist: Good Earth Floral Design Studio     Cake Decorator: 3 Women and a Oven     Caterer: Olive Events     Photobooth: Candid KC Photobooth     Entertainment: Weddings by Wynkoop     Transporation: Pech Limousine

I met Joel on the first day of work at my new job. I immediately had a crush on him and couldn’t wait to talk to him more. Just a few days into work, I found out that he was going away for training for six months, and I was really disappointed. I dated other people during that time but wasn’t very invested in any other romantic relationship because I secretly anticipated the day that I would see Joel again. Shortly after he returned, a mutual friend at work encouraged him to include me in a board game night. A few dates later, he asked me to be his girlfriend. 

The most surprising thing about falling in love was that the characteristics I had feared to be unrealistic were present in Joel. We had so many unforgettable experiences and conversations about love, travel, family, design, politics, struggles, desires, dreams, literally, everything – our connection was a kind I’d never experienced before. I felt a deep love for him that is indescribable. 

Joel and I came back from dinner one night and he handed me a custom designed card (he is a graphic designer) and told me to pack a bag. It was the start of a surprise trip. From that point on, he continued to hand me a new card at each point along our travel: one at the airport, on the plane, and when the plane landed. We arrived in Savannah Georgia where we both attended SCAD(although we didn’t know each other at the time). We drove to an old plantation with Spanish moss hanging from the oak trees and wandering walkways. We stopped at a twisted oak trunk overlooking a marsh where he handed me the last card that read, “At last, your love has come along” (a quote from an Etta James song), and got down on one knee to propose!

We are both graphic designers, and really enjoyed coming up with our wedding “brand”. Our invitations included a recipe card so our friends and family could help us start our collection. The table numbers doubled as cards with a unique prompt inside each one. Guests could write in the cards which we would then open later, on the corresponding year of our anniversary. My mom took my “bohemian chic” vision and created a unique setting for each table. She painted eclectic objects like metal type, elephants, and bird cages to tie the look together.

The wedding events started with a first look with my dad, and then with Joel at the venue. After that, the wedding party rode a party bus around KC to take photos. Then it was time for the ceremony; Joel and I had written our own vows and read them aloud, then sealed them in an envelope with a hot wax stamp. After the ceremony, our guests enjoyed appetizers and cocktails downstairs. The reception began with cake cutting, dinner, and then toasts. After that, the dance floor, dessert bar, and photo booth opened. About halfway through our reception, we announced “crazy hour”, which is a tradition that originated in the Dominican Republic and is basically a Latin dance party. Props were passed out to everyone on the dancefloor. At the end of the reception, our guests lined up outside with gold streamer poppers which made for an epic exit!


The few private minutes we had together in the waiting room right after we got married were the most special to me. It was the very beginning of my married life together with Nina and a memory I will always treasure. At the party, the chaos and excitement of crazy hour and our streamer exit also top my list.

The first memorable moment of the day was listening to Joel read his vows to me aloud; it was truly a spiritually moving experience. And then crazy hour on the dance floor was way too much fun. Getting crazy and being silly with all of our most favorite people in the world was priceless!

Before the wedding, my husband and I painted a large canvas that was positioned behind us at the altar. We saw examples of drip painting that we loved, practiced the technique and experimented with colors before making the final canvas. 

When I was younger I bought two antique door keys and saved one of them for my future husband. On the morning of our wedding day, I gave Joel one of those keys with a tag attached that read, “For the love of my life”. 

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