The sheer elegance of Ashley and Greg’s wedding proved no detail had gone unplanned, each and every whisper of romance, the garden trellis theme that speckled its way across the decor, cascading flowers and ethereal centerpieces turned the ballrooms of The Ritz-Carlton, Buckhead into a long-awaited vision. And still, all of it faded, everything stilled when Ashley made her way down the aisle, locking eyes with Greg as the ceremony commenced and they vowed to love one another forever. The bride was stunning in a Kenneth Pool ballgown, the silk taffeta bustled into a dramatic train. The bridal party wore whisper shades of grey, Greg and his groomsmen effortlessly handsome in modern tuxedos. The reception was a flurry of dancing, mouthwatering food and laughter, culminating in a once-in-a-lifetime performance by Greg, his brother and a friend, that of course, led to Ashley and Greg crowd-surfing in a perfectly unexpected moment. A beautiful send-off saw the newlyweds bound for their honeymoon in exotic Fiji. Step into the magic of these nuptials with these images by Garrett Nudd Weddings, a wedding photographer located in Chattanooga, Tennessee!
Tell us how you met. Was it love at first sight, blind date, friends forever?
We initially met very briefly in Atlanta, at a single’s Valentine’s Day party in 2009. As soon as we introduced ourselves, Greg’s friends were headed out, so he had to leave too. A few months later, we both had coincidentally joined college alumni kickball teams. At a post-game league get together, I recognized Greg from the night we met a few months earlier and we began talking. Before we left he asked for my number and we had our first date several days later.
Please give us an overview of the event.
Greg and I really wanted an elegant, romantic, outdoor wedding, but finding something to fit our needs in the middle of Atlanta proved difficult. We decided to do the next best thing and bring the outdoors inside. Choosing the Ritz Carlton Buckhead was an easy decision. Not only because of their reputation of excellence and attention to detail, but the newly renovated rooms were gorgeous and had the most beautiful chandeliers that I envisioned for our ceremony. The ceremony was held in a smaller ballroom followed by an outdoor cocktail hour and reception in a larger ballroom.
What was the most memorable moment?
There were two distinct moments for me. The first was seeing Greg’s face as I walked down the aisle toward him, and it felt like we were the only two in the room. The second was after the band’s last song at the reception, Greg, his brother, and a friend all got on stage and played “Enter Sandman” by Metallica, which led to guests picking the two of us up to be crowd surfed. Definitely something I won’t forget.
Tell us about your wedding gown and what your wedding party wore.
My wedding gown was a Kenneth Pool dropped waist ball gown. It was silk taffeta with a beaded bodice and dramatic bustled train. My bridesmaids wore long chiffon Love Lane dresses in two different colors. Four of the bridesmaids wore a lighter gray and my two maids of honor were in a darker gray color. The groomsmen wore modern fit tuxes with black bow ties and suspenders. To set Greg apart from the groomsmen, he wore a white bow tie and as a gift that day, I gave him monogrammed white suspenders.
Now for the proposal…details!
It was Labor Day weekend, two weeks before Greg was moving to Texas, so we decided to take one of the last free weekends left and do one our favorite things – go hiking in the North Georgia Mountains with our dog. We left early in the morning hoping to catch the sunrise over the peaks. By the time we arrived, the weather had changed for the worse and the fog was so thick I couldn’t see two feet in front of me. We hung out for a while hoping it would clear up, but then rain came. Greg suggested going back down the mountain to another trail, and we could try again for the view a few hours later. When we tried a second time the rain had cleared and it was gorgeous. We found a secluded grassy overlook and had a picnic. While taking in the beautiful sights, he got down on one knee and asked the question. It was perfect.
Was there a specific theme or style?
We wanted it to feel like a romantic evening in the garden. I loved the candles, hanging chandeliers and trellis theme that was repeated throughout the night.
What were your playful twists that made the event unique?
I think it was just different aspects of the garden feel that made it different. For the ceremony we were able to create a curved grass aisle runner, something I had never seen done before. There was a lattice theme repeated throughout the night. It was carried out from the boxwood and gold lattice backdrop in the ceremony and reception rooms to lattice design on the cake. This was portrayed all the way through the seating layout. We had a mix of round and estate tables, that when viewed from above made the “x” shape which formed a lattice. Instead of chairs at all of the rounds we also had banquette seating to make it a little more fun.
Tell us about the food and desserts.
The food was incredible. The Ritz Carlton provided everything and it did not disappoint. When we went for our tasting we had two ideas in mind we wanted to capture. We wanted the menu to have a “fall” feel, but we also wanted to reflect Greg’s heritage. His family is from Poland, and during the tasting we picked items that most resembled food he grew up on. For this, we settled on a delicious poached beet salad and gnocchi – which very much tasted like pierogi. This was served with braised short rib and seared scallops. The cake was also done in house, and I was in awe of what their pastry chef created. I gave a very loose description of what I envisioned – lattice theme, ruffles, and gold. After the ceremony we walked into the ballroom for the reveal, and it was perfect! Two flavors of cake were passed out – passion fruit and chocolate raspberry. Everything was delicious!
What kind of energy did your entertainment give the event?
We had The Celebrity AllStars Band perform, and they definitely made it feel like one of the best parties I have ever been to. They fed off of the crowd’s energy and kept it going all night. Everyone was truly talented but one of their lead singers was a standout performer. Not only did he get on the dance floor and perform, but he started a soul train line, then even channeled Michael Jackson’s moves and got everyone into it. We were even called us on stage to sing the last song with them.
See Ashley and Greg’s wedding video from Jeffrey Stoner Video!
Venue, Catering & Cake: The Ritz-Carlton, Buckhead | Floral & Decor: A Legendary Event | Band: Celebrity AllStars | Wedding Dress: Solutions Bridal | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bella Bridesmaid | Tuxedos: Guffey’s Atlanta | Hair & Makeup: POSH Hair & Makeup | Photography: Garrett Nudd Weddings | Videography: Jeffrey Stoner Video | Ceremony Music: The Camerata Quartet | Invitations: Art by Ellie | Wedding Coordinator: Lisa Stoner of E-Events Design