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Melissa and Ryan Have a Sunny Wedding at The Sutherland in Wake Forest

So how do you know for sure that your fiancé loves you? There are many signs, obviously, but for Melissa, her fisherman fiancé showed her by selling his beloved bass boat to buy her an engagement ring. For those of you with avid fishermen in your lives, you will fully understand how huge this is. Ryan wanted her to know how much he loved her and what better way than to sell a prized possession to buy something for her.

Both Melissa and Ryan have had wonderful examples of long, loving marriages in their families so it was not too hard for Ryan to know how to show his love. Ryan’s parents have been married for 28 years,

photo by Brian Anderson

Melissa’s parents have been married for 27 years,

photo by Brian Anderson

and Melissa’s grandparents have been married for 61 years!

photo by Brian Anderson

Ryan and Melissa have some mighty big footsteps to follow! During the ceremony they wanted to make sure their parents and grandparents were honored for the great examples they had set for them, followed by Melissa and Ryan surprising them all with roses for their moms and grandmother. Many tears were seen as they presented the roses. Such a touching moment.

photo by Brian Anderson

Melissa and Ryan chose as their wedding location the beautiful The Sutherland Estate and Gardens in Wake Forest. What a wonderful location this is for a wedding. Tucked off the highway, it is all enclosed and private and they include skilled wedding planners in their packages. Ashlee Adams was in charge of making sure everything went well for Melissa and Ryan and she was certainly a professional in all she did. It was great working with her.

Here are some shots of this most impressive wedding and event venue;

the main house where the Bride and her Bridesmaids dress and the Settler’s Cottage where the Groom and Groomsmen dress

photo by Brian Anderson

the brick area where the ceremonies take place, the wedding garden lawn as it extends back toward the house, and the large brick patio behind the house, perfectly suited for setting up a large dance floor

photo by Brian Anderson

photo by Brian Anderson

the rustic dining room that leads into the bright, airy anteroom where the cake and some of the refreshments were served

Melissa’s beautiful wedding dress had been copied by her Grandmother for one of Melissa’s childhood Barbie dolls and I couldn’t resist getting a photo of Melissa and Barbie together.

Barbie also had a place of honor down in the traditional dining room where the gift table was set up and she later joined the revelry out by the dance floor in the evening. 

photo by Brian Anderson

The accent colors for the wedding were aqua and yellow and what a happy, cheery combination that is. Melissa and Ryan used it to perfect effect for the Bridesmaid dresses, the bouquets and boutonnieres,

the pomanders they made for the aisle chairs, 

the table settings and centerpieces under the reception tent,

 the jelly beans they made themselves (!!) for guest favors,

the wedding cake and table,

even Melissa’s wedding shoes were a cheery shade of yellow!

Their gifts for their Bridal Party were engraved beer mugs for the men and yellow and aqua polka dot glasses for the ladies.

Here you see Melissa’s brother and Ryan’s best man with the polka dot glasses in hand, no doubt going to get refreshments for the ladies.

photo by Brian Anderson

It was a sunny day with sunny decorations and it all matched perfectly the sunny dispositions of this happy couple and their families and guests. It was quite a special event and I know everyone there was having a marvelous time. Even Barbie herself, who must have been privy to some special moments in Melissa’s childhood, must have been enjoying every moment.

The photographer for the wedding was Hilton Pitman, of Hilton Pitman Photography. Some of his wonderful photos are included here with his watermark embossed. (Thanks, Hilton) He also did some wonderful engagement photos of Melissa and Ryan and I wrote a blog post about it a few months ago. Here’s a link to that post if you’d like to read it.

My thanks also to Melissa’s cousin, Brian Anderson, who provided most of the photos used here. 

Melissa and Ryan, it was such a joy to get to know you and to be a part of such a special day in your lives. Thank you again for the beautiful birthday flowers and sweet card you gave me on my birthday. I was so touched by your thoughtfulness. (My birthday was on their rehearsal date and they gave me flowers and a card signed by everyone at the rehearsal.)

May all your dreams come true in unique and wonderful ways - and may Ryan’s new bass boat (when it comes along) be a joy for you both.


Update 9/1/11- I have just learned that Melissa and Ryan’s wedding will be featured in the Spring / Summer 2012 issue of The Knot North Carolina, which will be on sale in stores starting Dec. 27, 2011. Can’t wait to read it!

Update 1/23/12 - Here is the link to the blog post I wrote when their wedding was featured in The Knot North Carolina magazine.


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