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Destined to-be: Classic-Chic Ceremony in Virginia

It was during a Greek function in college when Brandi and Alvester were first introduced.

Their connection was immediate and natural with both realizing they had numerous commonalities, including growing up a half-hour apart, sharing mutual friends, and their mothers also having a mutual connection – “coincidences” that they could only attribute to fate. Brandi and Alvester were pronounced husband and wife in a chic church ceremony, followed by a romantic and rustic pavilion reception in Virginia. Read about their love story, winery engagement, and wedding experiences.


Bride & Groom: Brandi & Alvester
Occupations: Solution Engineer & IT Specialist
Wedding date: April 27, 2019
Wedding location: Warrenton, Virginia

How did you meet? We met at a Greek function in college. AJ is in Kappa Alpha Psi and I am in Alpha Kappa Alpha. When we began to talk, we realized that our hometowns are 30 minutes apart and we had friends in common. Our mothers went to a concert together with a mutual friend years before which was such a coincidence, we could only attribute to fate.

Tell us about the proposal. Brandi and her family visited the Potomac Point Winery multiple times throughout her life. Brandi’s love for wine began by visiting this winery and learning about how wine was made. Brandi had mentioned to AJ over the course of their relationship that she had always dreamed of getting married at Potomac Point Winery and she had always planned to take AJ there for a wine tasting. Over the three years of their relationship, Brandi never got the opportunity to take AJ to the winery. On a rainy day, February 16th, 2018, AJ told Brandi he had something planned for this Valentine’s day weekend and made sure she knew to be dressed by 4 pm. AJ began the night by taking Brandi to her favorite sushi restaurant for an appetizer then they went to Potomac Point Winery for wine tasting and dinner. After the wine tasting, AJ asked Brandi to show him around the venue since he had never been there before. After walking around for a little, AJ has Brandi to show him the reception hall she always wanted to book for her wedding. When Brandi opened the doors to the reception hall, all of Brandi and AJ’s closest family and friends were there waiting for the surprise! At this point, AJ got down on one knee and popped the question!

Describe your wedding style. The wedding style was both romantic and intimate with touches of Navy, Champagne, and Ivory. Brandi had grown up watching Say Yes to The Dress and always loved Pnina Tornai gowns. Brandi got the opportunity to get the full Say Yes to the Dress experience and the final gown she tried on was a Pnina Tornai gown. Brandi knew at this moment that she had to have it! AJ always wanted to see Brandi in a fitted wedding gown, while Brandi wanted to give her father the experience of seeing his princess walk down the aisle. To accomplish both of these looks Brandi got a fit and flare Pnina Tornai gown, and her seamstress, Shannon of Mackenzie Clare, create a custom detachable skirt for the ceremony. AJ had a custom tuxedo created by JPRStyling and a custom Butterfly Bowtie by Well Groomed Man. During the entire creation process, AJ was able to pick all the fabrics and colors of the suit. AJ wanted to compliment the color scheme of the wedding while also standing out in his true fashion.

Did you incorporate any culture into your wedding? AJ and Brandi wanted to incorporate intimate aspects from both of their parents’ weddings. To accomplish this, they conducted the candle lighting ceremony from AJ’s parent’s wedding, and during the candle lighting ceremony the soloist, Donnell White, sang the song Brandi’s mother walked down the aisle to. Brandi had the opportunity to include her father who is a pastor in the ceremony as he did the prayer over AJ and Brandi.

Wedding Party Gifts: Bridemaids – robes and socks to get ready for the day. Groomsmen – a cottage so all groomsmen could celebrate the night before the wedding.
Gifts for Each Other: AJ got Brandi a butterfly ring, Brandi got AJ an Ankh pendant.
Ceremony Entrance Song: “For You” by Kenny Lattimore, Sung by Donnell White
First Dance Song: “Happily Ever After” by Case

What is your best memory from your wedding? Brandi, since her childhood had a love of Mustangs, specifically cherry red 1968 convertible Mustangs. Brandi spent a great portion of her childhood attending car shows with her Grandfather, Jerry, and every car show she managed to find her way over to capture a photo with her favorite mustang. By pure coincidence, or maybe by fate, AJ’s father had this very same mustang! Brandi and AJ got the opportunity to drive this mustang in their getaway from the ceremony. In all the wedding movies Brandi saw over her life and pointed out to AJ that they had to do this at their wedding, she always wanted to experience the iconic walk down the church stairs with family and friends cheering the new couple on, as they hop in their getaway car and drive off into the sunset. This moment was all that Brandi and AJ could dream of and was so special that AJ actual shed a tear as he put his new wife in her dream car.

What is the best wedding advice you can give to engaged couples? The best wedding advice we could give is to an engaged couple is to cherish every moment you can from the wedding ceremony because it goes by so quickly! You spend so much time planning and stressing over every detail of the wedding and then it seems like a blur if you don’t take the time to sit back and take it all in. If AJ and I did not have our fantastic wedding planner to take the stress of the day off our shoulders, and our amazing photographer to capture the very intimate moments of our ceremony and reception, our wedding would have probably been a blur as well!


Vendors:
Photographer: Leandra Brown Photography
Second Shooter: Raiza Vega Photography
Wedding Planner: Caressa Jackson of Caressed by Design
Florist: Good Earth Flowers
Event Rentals: Memorable Moments
Soloist: Donnell White
Bridal Gown: Pnina Tornai
Bridal Veil & Detachable Skirt: Shannon of Mackenzie Clare
Bridal Hairpiece: Bridal Styles Boutique
Bride/Bridesmaid Hairstylist: Reyunna Harper of Hair By Reyunna
Bride/Bridesmaid Makeup Artist: Eboni Blair of Adonai MUA
DJ: Darryl Squires
Officiant: Apostle Duane I Coats of Word of Faith Christian Fellowship
Ceremony Venue: Warrenton United Methodist Church
Reception Venue: Airlie
Groom Tuxedo: JPR Styling
Groom Bowtie: Well Groomed Man
Groomsmen Tuxedo: Men’s Warehouse

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About Samuel

Bookworm with degrees in English, Psychology, and Fine Art. Interests include cycling, rock climbing, hiking, Tabla, Violin, hoarding books, and poorly identifying birds.

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