Real Stella York Bride Melissa + Andrew

A long distance relationship went the distance when bride Melissa married groom Andrew in a romantic outdoor wedding in Texas. Pairing her ethereal lace wedding dress with notes of blue and natural elements, Melissa achieved the kind of wedding she had been dreaming of since her first date with Andrew. We love how this couple stood the test of time – because when you know, you just know!

From the bride: Andrew and I met sophomore year of high school in our AP World History class, and became great friends. When we met, we were both dating other people. We’d even go to Sonic sometimes for milkshakes after school and he gave me dating advice.That friendship continued to grow, and junior year we had several classes together. By then we were very close friends, and because of that we almost didn’t date! Long story short- we did begin to date in high school, continued to date long distance when he went to college at the Univerity of Texas at Austin and I went to Baylor University. After graduation, I moved back to the Houston area, and Andrew went to graduate school at Colorado School of Mines. (6 years of long distance !!) He came home for the summer after his first year in grad school and asked if I’d like to go to dinner at one of our favorite dinner spots from when we first started dating. He picked me up that night with a sonic drink, took me to get drinks from the Mexican food restaurant where he first asked me to be his girlfriend, then on to dinner at Carabbas. He proposed on a dock near his house (as it was lightning and storming all around us on the water.) Our brothers had lit over 100 candles on the dock that blew out from the rain a couple minutes before we showed up, but our families were hiding nearby and we went back to his parent’s house for champagne and Bluebell ice cream. Can you tell we like food? It was so sweet to take a walk down memory lane and celebrate with our families. We checked out what ended up being our venue, Camp Lucy, with my parents the next day, then headed to spend Memorial Day at the lake with his family.

My bridal shopping experience ended up being quite the story. A good friend of mine got her bridesmaids dresses from Whittington Bridal in Kingwood, TX, and since I was a bridesmaid, I followed Whittington’s Instagram account. I saw they were having a trunk show for their Stella York line, and I off handly told my mom about it. (Did I mention I wasn’t engaged yet.) I wasn’t really pushing to go, but my mom was like well there isn’t anything on the schedule, so we can check it out. It didn’t take much to twist my arm, so I scheduled an appointment. Especially since Andrew hadn’t proposed yet, my goal was to find a dress style I liked, because I really didn’t know exactly what I wanted. We showed up, started pulling some dresses, and I mosied on over to where the cupcakes and mimosas were. Next to the cupcakes was a dress so gorgeous, and so ethereal. My consultant saved it for last, and for good reason. It was perfect- gorgeous and feminine. I also got to meet one of the designers for Stella York and give her a hug. I said yes to the dress with my mom that day and then kept it a secret until the day after our engagement. Hey, when you know, you know, right?

I wanted our day to feel very romantic and ethereal. Andrew is a geologist, so incorporating beautiful earthy elements in our florals and decor helped the day feel like “us,” not just my style. The bridesmaid and house party dresses were both long and flowy, which paired wonderfully with the whimsical tulle skirt of my dress. The boys wore charcoal tuxes, which kept the elegant feel while enhancing the grey-blue tones in the girls’ dresses. The florals were very neutral and garden-like – creme blooms and lots of greenery in open bouquets. We incorporated a lot of agate that Andrew’s family has, as well as used silver pieces that have been passed down in my family. What made our family the most personal was being able to have our greatest friends from different times in our life come together and stand by us on the greatest day of our lives.

There were so many special moments. Many people told me to soak it in because the day goes by so quickly, and it really didn’t. It was never overwhelming, and we were truly able to enjoy each moment from getting ready with the girls, to our first look, to the ceremony and reception. As far as favorite moments- I will never forget the second shooter being the last one out of the bridal suite and telling me to enjoy the only moment I’ve had alone today, and it hit me then the magnitude of the day. I was able to spend about 5 sweet minutes with my dad before our processional. Walking down the aisle and seeing Andrew- a moment I’ve envisioned since I was a little girl, and having our closest friends and family all there. There is just nothing better than that.

Photography by Ashlen Sydney Photography