Kelsey and Mitchell celebrated their marriage May 11th, 2019 in Mitchell’s hometown of Birmingham, AL. The sweet ceremony took place at Canterbury United Methodist Church, and the reception followed at the Country Club of Birmingham. Rachel and Noah Ray did a fantastic job capturing this special day. BONUS this was Kathleen Varner’s last wedding before she took it easy preparing for her new baby - we can’t wait for that!
Kelsey and Handley have actually known each other for several years now so it was very special to get to work with her to plan her wedding! Kelsey and Mitchell have such a deep love and it was very apparent throughout the whole wedding day. We hope you enjoy looking back through these images as much as we did!
Tell us a little bit about how you two met and got engaged.
Mitchell and I met on a spring break trip in the Dominican Republic in college. It was a huge group of about thirty and we were both invited through mutual friends. Mitchell was the friend of a friend's boyfriend's older brother, so needless to say we were not expecting to meet. When it comes down to it, if we want to be technical we met because of our good friend Caleb Davis (who would love to be mentioned :) ). From there we spent a couple of years in Tuscaloosa going on dates, to date parties, raising my Maltipoo Luna, winning football games and acting like the good days would never end. After we graduated I basically stalked Mitchell around the country from one city to another. After five years of dating, on exactly our five year anniversary Mitchell purposed. We had been visiting my LONG time best friend the weekend before and I had a feeling he was going to ask then, as we were also going to a concert for the same band whose concert we were at when he asked me to be his girlfriend. When he didn't ask, I had all but given up hope that we were ever going to get married. Then, Mitchell took me to a SUPER early dinner at a great french restaurant in Buckhead, it was 6:30. I could not figure out why he had booked dinner at a time reserved for people with toddlers and senior citizens. While at dinner he mentioned that he was excited we would be able to go watch an episode of Game of Thrones since it was so early. This comment threw me for a loop. We really were just eating the early-bird special and then watching TV. THEN, while Ubering to what I thought was a television, the Uber went towards downtown. It took us to the Ferris wheel where he had booked a private "room" to purpose (I had given strict instructions of no crowds or people or anything that would draw attention!) From there we went to go tell our dog and the rest is history.
What was your favorite part of wedding planning?
My favorite part of wedding planning would have to be picking the food and of course the dress. Mitchell and I had been to so many weddings together we had a really good idea of what food we wanted to give people, what type of music, etc. For me, the dress buying experience was WONDERFUL. It was quick, easy and I just felt so special. Sloane at Ivory and White did such a great job helping me select. My Maid of Honor was also there which was so special because I got to have my person in my favorite place and she knows me exactly! Ivory and White really made the process so fun and special. I was blessed in that it only took me a couple of hours to find the dress and really needed no alterations which I know isn't always the case but ... it was great! Mitchell was also great throughout the process which was actually a bit surprise because he can be a bit type-A but he was very hands-off while also asking if I needed help! And finally, another favorite part was working with Handley and all the vendors. I would send general ideas and then we would all collaborate. I felt like they really got what I was looking for and then made it better. (I would highly suggest taking planner and vendor opinions, suggestions, ideas, creative liberties into account because I think you get a better finished product)
What was your favorite part of the wedding day?
I would have to say, having all of our friends and family around was really cool. Personally, all of my girls were from all different seasons in my life so to have them all there at one time in one place was very special. There was just so much love and support in the air, it was great. Another favorite part of mine was walking back down the aisle with Mitchell! After being officially married I felt like we could relax. Also having said the vows and not butchered them was great. :) Another favorite part, the reception ... duh! For me, seeing the reception hall for the first time was memorizing. It was beyond what I had imagined and that moment made me finally feel like OUR wedding was happening.
Honestly working with Handley and her team was the best! - I truly can not imagine what the day would have been like without them. It would have been COMPLETELY different.
What was your favorite wedding detail?
If I had to choose only ONE favorite detail of the whole wedding it would be THE WALL. Aka the flower wall behind the cake. It made me cry. I wish I could have somehow kept it. I want it in my house, my office everywhere because it was just so beautiful. Handley and Kathleen are geniuses. BUT there were some close runner-ups: The vintage Car, the hot dogs, the opaque belly band detail on the invites w/ the wax seal, the cake (look and taste), and the band! It was all so great!!
Vendor Team — Planning and Coordination: Handley Breaux Designs | Photography: Rachel and Noah Ray | Videography: Rush Videos | Floral: Kathleen Varner | Cake: Magic Muffins | Catering: Country Club of Birmingham | Rentals: Prophouse | Lighting/Draping: Design Productions | Transportation: Rare Transportation | Hair and Make-up: Abby Moorer | Dress: Ivory and White Boutique | Papers: Annabelle’s