Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details

After a very quirky match-up on dating site eHarmony, Nicole and Seth found love in one another and were inseparable after that first date. When you know, you just know, right? A mere two years after their initial meeting, Seth enlisted their sweet pups for a surprising and cozy at-home proposal that was conducted in the same exact spot as their first kiss. So sweet!

Once wedding planning was underway, Nicole and Seth dreamt of a romantic and elegant affair in Raleigh. Neutral, muted colors like taupe, gray, and ivory were paired alongside heaps of greenery and quicksand and earl gray roses from Embellished Bloom’s traditional creations. Tinges of the softest light pink flowers were brought in to add some depth to their monochromatic color palette at the Merrimon-Wynne House. Ultimately, what we adored most about Nicole and Seth’s A.J. Dunlap Photography wedding were the fun details like the escort card caricatures. We love when classic weddings incorporate fun, unique, and personalized details.

Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography02
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography08
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography11
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography07
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography19
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography20
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography21
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography24
Wedding Ceremony Dog of Honor Ringbearer Puppy
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography22
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography29
Tall Floral Wedding Centerpiece
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography32
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography33
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography39
White Rose Hydrangea Tall Centerpiece
Flax Linen and White Wedding Tablescape
Luxe Raleigh Wedding with Unique Details AJ Dunlap Photography27

In their own words

How did you meet?

Seth and I met on eHarmony. Actually a funny story behind this. With eHarmony you complete a personality assessment and you have no control over the people that they send forward as potential matches as they are based on your assessment results. There is, however, a “What If” category where maybe someone matched with you from the personality assessment but they feel out of the criteria you set such as distance from where you are or age or height. I am 5’0 and I set my maximum height at 6’0. Well Seth is 6’5 so he fell out of my criteria but we matched in every other way. I ended up in his “What If” section and the rest is history!

What is your proposal story?

After our first date, we were pretty much inseparable. It was summertime and we spent a lot of time at my house and at my neighborhood pool. Our first kiss was outside my back door. Two years later on my birthday we were leaving the house out the back door to go to dinner and Seth told me to look at the dogs in the house and when I turned around he was down on one knee and proposed where we had our very first kiss. It was perfect!

What was the most important to the two of you while planning? Was there anything that you chose to splurge on or skip?

Most important to Seth was food, alcohol and music. It is hard for me to say that one thing was most important it was all really important to me. I wanted people to really enjoy the food and not leave hungry. I wanted them to walk away in awe of the vision and I wanted them to have so much fun that they had to force us all to leave. We were not going to hire a videographer but a friend of mine had just gotten married in December and I asked her what one regret was and she said not getting one because there are moments you are not at and things you forget so we ended up splurging past our budget with that.

What were your favorite parts of the day?

My father collapsed at our rehearsal and was rushed via ambulance with my mother to the hospital as we went on to our rehearsal dinner. I had to no idea what was wrong with him so as you can imagine I did my best to put on a happy face and keep going.

He was admitted to the hospital and I woke up on our wedding day not knowing if he would be able to even come to the wedding. They did release him and both my parents were able to attend. My father could not walk me down the aisle so my mother stepped in but seeing them both there was certainly a highlight for me.

Walking in to the venue not knowing if my parents would be there, I was greeted by my wedding planner who instantly asked about my father of which I responded, “I don’t know how he is (at that moment I was not aware that he would make it) but I waited 40 years for this day and it is a gorgeous day and nothing will make this day anything but perfect.” She responded by saying (with a concerned look on her face) “okay so I am not worried.” I asked her what happened and she told me that the person who did all of my hair and makeup trials was not going to be able to make it. I obviously had an instant moment of panic but Krista Massey and Alexis stepped in and it turned out amazing.

Those are two stories I will never forget but the best moment was saying “I do” to my best friend. Also we hired someone who brought our fur babies for a photo op!

Do you have any advice for couples planning their weddings now?

Everyone told me this and it was hard to accept but truly everything does come together. If you can’t let it go during the planning process at the very least show up the day of your wedding and let it all go and soak up every moment it will all come together.

A friend gave me a piece of advice that I loved she told me that for a minute when you are about to walk down the aisle and everyone is standing looking at you pause and really take that moment in. She told me the love that you feel is tremendous. When she told me the story, she had tears in her eyes. It was such a wonderful piece of advice.

Event Credits

Ceremony VenueMerrimon-Wynne House
Reception VenueMerrimon-Wynne House
Event ProductionLa Cosa Bella Events
StationeryTheresa Jatko
RentalsCE Rental
Ceremony MusiciansArioso Strings Inc.
Wedding DressGilded Bridal
Groom’s AttireJos A Bank
Bride’s ShoesBadgley Mischka
Bridesmaids DressesBella Bridesmaids
Wedding DressLeanne Marshall