A gorgeous May wedding with a wonderful blend of texture, color, and detail. Latrell and Arun’s perfectly elegant garden wedding at Historic Mankin Mansion showcases how much love their family and friends have for these two college sweethearts.
We were classmates in graduate school at Washington University in St. Louis where we both were studying to become Occupational Therapists. Our cohort consisted of 86 students, 80 women and 6 men. Only two of which were single! Some of our classmates started a study group for our super difficult anatomy class. We both joined and showed up every week with more jokes than answers to the study guides. We became great friends and started hanging out regularly.
Every year we try to plan at least one adventure vacation abroad so we chose Havana, Cuba. Arun also had secret plans to purpose on the trip but then Covid halted the trip so we planned a small staycation instead. On my birthday, Arun woke up early and made me breakfast. He was being super sweet and smiley the entire day. Peeking around corners looking at me and staring into my soul every time I was speaking. Which I thought was pretty weird but I chalked it up to it being my birthday and him being excited. We decided to have a picnic across the street at Libby Hill Park. Arun baked me a giant cheese bread, packed a basket and suggested I change into nice clothing. He’s never suggested I change my clothing or appearance in anyway, so it was then that I knew something was happening! We got to the park, sat down and started eating and chatting for a while when eventually he said, ” I have a surprise for you, close your eyes”. I closed them and felt him shuffling about. When I reopened my eyes, he was down on one knee. He said some very kind words that I can’t remember because it felt like time had stood still. Arun down on one knee and that shinning ring staring at me were the only things on earth in that moment. I immediately was full of tears but did muster up a verbal yes. We hugged and kissed, sat a little while longer before heading off.
I brought my mom and my two maids of honor with me to Bridal Elegance of Virginia. We picked somewhere around 15 dresses. I tried on each one and my mom asked if I was saying yes to the dress Every. Single. Time. I was able to narrow it down to three dresses I loved pretty quickly. I wasn’t trying to be any version of a bride I’ve seen or imagined. I felt like it fit me perfectly, flattered me exactly how I wanted. It was timeless and elegant. I knew it was the one because it made me feel like the prettiest version of myself.
We didn’t see each other before the wedding. We did talk on the phone a couple of times that day though because we were so excited! We really liked waiting. It made the walk down the aisle feel incredibly special. Also I’d been waiting so long for Arun to see my dress, I wanted that to happen at the ceremony.
It is hard to narrow it down! We both had this feeling during the ceremony and the first dance where it felt like the world around you ceased to exist. We were so hyper focused each other everything else disappeared. It is indescribable to feel that in love and share those moments with all your family and friends.
Covid-19 Altered Plans
Covid-19 made wedding planning anxiety inducing. Every decision was made with a small chance of wasting our time, money and effort if things didn’t start to improve. We were on the edge of our seats waiting to hear the governor’s mandates for May. We both are healthcare workers and have seen the devastation of the virus up close, so safety was always at the forefront of our wedding planning. We both decided our wedding would go on, even if it was just the two of us on May 14th. Deciding that made it easier to move forward and trust that we were making choices that would end in us being husband and wife regardless of what happened around us.
Photography | Awesomesauce Photography
Venue | Historic Mankin Mansion
Caterer | Goodrich Gourmet
Dress Store | Bridal Elegance
Hair and Makeup | Candice Hardy Makeup Artistry
Groom’s Attire | Men’s Warehouse
Bridesmaid Dresses | Azazie
Videographer | Noah James Productions
Florist | Vogue Flowers
Officiant | Rev Cory Newell
Dessert | Carytown Cupcakes
Awesomesauce Photography offers colorful, fun, and emotional storytelling wedding photography at an affordable price. Based in Richmond, VA available for travel worldwide.