Real Essense of Australia Bride Rachel married the man of her dreams after seven years of dating. They had the sweetest surprise engagement in Chicago that completely took Rachel by surprise! The had a fun and personal wedding in New Orleans where Rachel stunned in Style D2365. Their wedding was absolutely beautiful! Keep reading for more about their wedding day and love story!
My now husband and I used to live in Chicago and we like to say that’s where we fell in love. We now live in Houston and we’re going back to Chicago for a weekend to visit some friends. I had always said how I wanted to take engagement photos there one day because it was “our” city. My older brother had gotten engaged a month before our trip and was living in Chicago so we’d be seeing them during our trip. The week before they asked us to take some cute “engagement” pictures of them while we were in town. That was supposed to be our thing so of course I thought well great there goes our opportunity to ever have those photos. The first night we arrive, my new future sister in law insists that we take some photos that night near a gorgeous lit up bridge. Of course, this was not expected and another reminder that engagement pictures in Chicago weren’t going to happen for us… since we weren’t engaged! We go to the bridge and in true Chicago fashion, it’s freezing so I say that I’ll wait in the car until they’re done. They force me out and say how great of a view it is and that Noah and I should get a photo together. I try to say no and that it’s too cold but they insist. I go to stand by Noah for a photo and he starts talking to me about our relationship and my first thought is why are you talking let’s take the pic and get out of the cold! Little did I know that this was the plan all along and I did not even realize what was happening until he was on one knee proposing while my brother and sister in law caught it on camera! I was in such disbelief and so excited all at the same time. Noah then surprised me again with a photographer ready to take our “Chicago engagement photos” the next day. I was able to spend the weekend celebrating with my brother and all of our friends in Chicago, the city where we fell in love.
Since we were having our wedding in New Orleans and the city is full of glitz and glam, I knew I wanted a dress that would fit in with that. I wasn’t the kind of bride who knew exactly the dress that I was going to wear on my day or has any kind of vision prior to dress shopping. I don’t know why I had never really thought about it! I did know that I didn’t want to spend a million bucks on a dress but also wanted it to look and make me feel beautiful. I went to a few small dress shops before ending up at weddings by Debbie and I’m so glad I found it. The shop is so beautiful and it was full of gorgeous dresses. When I found Essense of Australia dresses, it was so hard to pick one. I tried on a couple and they were each more beautiful than the next. When I put on my dress, I had that “feeling”. My mom and best friend/MOH were the only two with me and they both knew it was the one. I’m super close with both of my parents so I decided to sleep on it and come back the next day with my dad. When I saw my dad’s reaction to me in the dress I knew I had to have it. That made it all feel even more real and I couldn’t wait to come back for all of my fittings just so I could put my dress back on!
The Wedding Details
The colors of our wedding were black, white and gold. Our flowers were white with greenery and a mix of some very light pinks thrown in while all of the decor had hints of gold. I always knew that I wanted my wedding party in black. Black is timeless and everyone looks good in black. I also wanted our wedding to be fun. We chose New Orleans because Noah and I spent several NYE’s there and made some of the best memories. New Orleans is always a good time and we knew our guests would enjoy it, too! We did a few things to personalize the wedding, from our neon sign saying “it was always you” to cut out fans of our cat. 🙂 Noah and I had been together for seven years before getting engaged so needless to say, it was always him. We would always say that to each other when we would get in immature fights while dating in our younger years. And obviously our adorable fur child had to be featured at the wedding in some way and with a September wedding in the south, fans seemed fitting. We also had Jell-O shots in syringes (a bourbon street staple) for our guests to enjoy at the end of the wedding while on their way to join the second line. A second line is a New Orleans wedding tradition that is the greatest thing ever. A brass band leads the entire wedding dancing through the streets of New Orleans. It was the most perfect way to end our wedding night and truly a night I’ll never forget.
Are you ready to find your dream dress like Rachel? Find an Essense of Australia retailer near you today!
Photos by Brittani Taylor