Alexis Snell and Bill Daniel first met in Charleston, South Carolina, in August 2012 while attending a mutual friend's wedding. Despite the fact that the groom would remain in the historic city for law school and the bride would return to her home in Atlanta, Georgia, the pair hit it off and had their first official date two weeks after they crossed paths. Two years later, Bill popped the question while he and Alexis enjoyed an afternoon in a favorite local park. "Everything happened in slow motion after that, but I do remember being overjoyed, excited, and full of love at that moment," Alexis says.
Although neither the bride nor the groom is originally from Charleston, the southern city played a major role in their relationship, so planning their I do's there was a no brainer. "We've loved exploring this beautiful city and have so many memories here," Alexis says. "We knew we wanted our wedding to take place here." They decided on a May 9, 2015 ceremony at St. Luke's Chapel followed by a classic southern reception at the Wickliffe House. Ooh! Events helped the pair bring their vision to life and Brandon Lata Photography captured every moment!
Alexis and Bill chose a classic wedding invitation suite to set the tone for their formal bash. As a special touch, the friend whose wedding first brought them together designed their stationery!
While visiting Charleston to look at venues, the couple's planner suggested Alexis stop by White on Daniel Island, a local bridal boutique, just to browse. "I figured I would just go in and look around because I had a few dress appointments scheduled in Atlanta for the following weekend," Alexis remembers. "When the owner pulled this dress out from the back for me, I knew it was exactly what I was looking for. I felt like Grace Kelly!" The style, a strapless silk shantung gown, was truly one-of-a-kind &mash; the owner had designed it but ultimately decided not to put it into production. "She made a few customizations for me, like adding the champagne fabric on the inverted pleat, buttons down the back of the dress, and a beaded belt."
She finished her look with her mother's sapphire ring, sapphire-and-diamond earrings from Bill, and a cathedral length veil. Her bouquet was comprised of hydrangeas, peonies, ranunculus, dahlias, sweet pea, and dusty miller.
Alexis let her nine bridesmaids choose a champagne Lula Kate dress in a style of their choosing. "There are a lot of options for tops and bottoms, so everyone was able to get a look they really liked and was comfortable in," she says. They carried bouquets made up of hydrangeas, ranunculus, garden roses, peonies, and dusty miller.
Bill and his groomsmen all wore classic black tuxedos from Michael Kors. "They all looked pretty sharp!" Alexis says of the men in their formal attire. Each guy affixed a ranunculus boutonniere to his lapel.
"The chapel is pretty magnificent on its own, so we added minimal decorations," Alexis says of their ceremony. Lush arrangements of white hydrangeas were added to either side of the altar and oyster wreaths hung on the chapel doors. Guests enjoyed two live musicians, a violinist and cellist, who played Florence and the Machine's "Cosmic Love" as everyone was seated. Alexis and Bill chose to exchange traditional vows before their 220 guests.
"I'll always remember Bill's face as I was walking down the aisle," Alexis says. "I kept my eyes on him the entire time because I was afraid I would lose it if I looked at anyone else. He had the biggest smile on his face and was so happy. I remember thinking, 'I hope we are always as happy as we are right now.'"
After the ceremony, the party moved to the Wickliffe House, where the reception was held both inside and outdoors. Just days before the wedding, Alexis and Bill learned that a tropical storm was just off the coast of South Carolina, and all plans of open-air reveling were put on hold. "It was stressful making the necessary adjustments for the rain, but our coordinator was on top of it and had a tent up on the lawn and a layout for the outside décor," Alexis remembers. "The tent was stunning and the result was actually more beautiful than the original plan."
The interior of the Wickliffe House was decorated with round tables topped with ivory linens and natural wood square tables. Alexis and Bill chose antique silver vases to hold arrangements of hydrangea, dahlias, peonies, and ranunculus, as well as mercury glass bud vases that held peonies, ranunculus, and dusty miller.
Just outside, a sailcloth tent protected the lawn from the impending rain. There, a large wooden dance floor was built and a few additional tables were available for guests to dine at. The couple also brought in two lounge areas, complete with linen chairs, as a comfortable spot for guests to relax.
Dinner included the couple's favorite dishes, like seared pepper pork loin, made-to-order ravioli, and smashed cheese potatoes. Instead of a signature cocktail, guests enjoyed a drink of their choice in a glass housed in a custom-monogrammed koozie.
Dessert came in the form of a traditional four-tiered wedding cake. Beneath the floral decorations and thick coating of Italian buttercream, alternating layers of lemon cake with raspberry filling and strawberry cake with fresh strawberries awaited guests.
About an hour before the reception ended, Alexis changed into a knee-length dress from Lula Kate and hit the dance floor to party with her guests. "Bill and I wanted everyone to have a good time at the wedding," she says. "We spent most of the night out on the packed dance floor with our friends and family and it was so special to have all of the people we love the most in one place, for one night, to celebrate with us."
The pair closed out the night with a sparkler exit before departing on a mini-moon to Litchfield Beach followed by a longer honeymoon in Belize once the groom finished law school.
Ceremony Venue: St. Luke's Chapel || Reception Venue: The Wickliffe House || Wedding Planner: Megan Chandler of Ooh! Events || Bride's Wedding Dress: White on Daniel Island || Bride's Second Dress: Lula Kate || Veil: Melinda Rose || Hair & Makeup: Lordis Loft Salon || Bridesmaids' Dresses: Lula Kate || Groom's & Groomsmen's Attire: Charleston Tuxedo || Florist: Out of the Garden || Invitations: Print || Calligraphy: Gayle Hilton || Ceremony Music: Little City Music Duo || Reception Music: Super Deluxe || Catering: Mediterra Catering at the Wickliffe House || Cake: Cakes by Kasarda || Rentals: Polished!; Ooh! Events || Favors: Print; Keystone Specialties || Koozies: Totally Wedding Koozies || Personalized Napkins: For Your Party || Transportation: Private and Personal Transportation || Accommodations: King Charles Inn || Videographer: That Rainwater || Photographer: Brandon Lata Photography
Want more southern wedding inspiration? Then watch another couple say I do in a sweet ceremony in Tennessee in the video below.