… insight from nina …
how would you describe your wedding to someone who was not there?
I wanted our wedding to be beautiful and elegant but also dynamic and a joyous time for our guests. We chose to forgo a traditional seated dinner for a cocktail style reception that went late in to the night. We served the most delicious food that felt very “us,” including swordfish belly, short rib and grits, and midnight snacks of grilled cheeses and desserts! We still were able to have gorgeous tablescapes with romantic florals but we also had fun seating areas where friends could gather and chat for a bit during dance breaks.
is there anything you wish you had done differently when planning your wedding?
No, we took just over 20 months to plan our wedding! I knew myself pretty well and knew that I am not the best decision maker and tend to procrastinate just a teensy bit. But I absolutely loved having a long engagement! I switched careers and we bought our first home that we would move in together once we were married during that time! We were able to enter in to our marriage truly ready to start a gorgeous life together.
which three vendors were most important to you when planning your wedding?
I have to say, my event planner, Sarah Fairbairn of One Fine Day Events stunned! She was a perfect complement to the day and made everything calm and organized. Even though we discussed everything in minute detail before, it was somehow 10x better on the day of!
I also loved my caterer, SaltBlock Catering! Ryan C. met with us so many times to guarantee our absolute happiness. He went the extra mile to get us exactly what we wanted AND the food was delicious.
I also just felt that my photographer, Marissa Moss, made the day so special (and since we have the pictures always, we will remember that forever). She put my husband and I at ease when we are never usually comfortable in front of the camera and just the coolest surprise ever– she had pictures from our first look playing on a beautiful electronic frame. That detail blew everyone away!
what was your biggest wedding day savings?
Is my Dad reading this? Because he will tell you that there were not enough of those! But, I tried to save on little things everywhere. Instead of getting an expensive veil, I chose a headpiece that didn’t take away from the beadwork on my dress. We cut a videographer in favor of getting a really phenomenal photographer and made decisions like that throughout, like what is more important in the long run?
what was your biggest wedding day splurge?
My band and my dress! The band was for the guests! Phase5 is the best band in Tampa, hands down! They kept the party going all night, and I mean all night (it went until 2am) and never lost momentum! The dance floor was always crowded and rowdy. The dress was for me. I loved my wedding dress and felt so happy to wear it all night!
what was the best advice you received when planning your wedding?
I think it was to not get caught up in planning a wedding but planning a marriage. Danton is my partner and I’m so happy we got to have this beautiful ceremony in our church followed by a huge party, but at the end of the night, that was just one day in our long life together. We planned it together and enjoyed it together, but what I’m most looking forward to is our life together.
was there anything encountered during wedding planning that was unexpected?
I would say that just the cost of everything is unexpected! Sticker shock for sure. But once we got over that, it was all about focusing on what we really wanted and to enjoy the process!
was there a moment during your wedding day that surprised you?
I was just blown away by the beauty of the moment. Being surrounded by almost 200 people who love you and traveled to be near you is a humbling experience and reminds you of the importance of the day. The other thing that surprised me was how easy it was! It all just went right.
what was your favorite moment of your wedding day?
My personal favorite part was our First Look. We got to see each other for the first time in all our finery before we said “I do” and then we got to take pictures with all our best friends and family! It was actually so fun to traipse around downtown Tampa in a huge tulle dress and an entourage in tow. And I can’t even describe how perfect the weather was! Tampa doesn’t get many perfectly cool days but we got lucky.
when you look back on your wedding day in 50 years, what do you think you’ll remember most?
Moments with my husband, parents, and all my friends hopefully. Little things that make us smile and rejoice.
… how it all came together…
ceremony | sacred heart catholic church
reception | the vault
event design & coordination | sarah fairburn, one fine day
caterer | salt block catering
cake artist | chocolate pi
florist | botanica florist
band | phase 5
wedding gown | jenny yoo
stationery | A & P designs
officiant | sacred heart catholic church
hair and makeup | femme akoi
men’s wear | men’s warehouse