It’s like the cliche line in Jerry McGuire, “You had me at hello”. The day Ming Thompson called me and began to describe the rustic, vintage, charming, personal, detailed, and beautiful wedding she was planning….I knew I would do anything short of selling my kids for her to book us. I’m so glad she didn’t make me get down on my knees and beg. She chose us and thus began our year of courting Dan and Ming. You know…DAN AND MING! Ming’s infamous decoder Save the Dates that blew up on Ruffled. They were also recently debuted on Style Me Pretty showcasing this very wedding. I must say, as amazing as those blogs are and how honored we are to be a part of those features…I am dying to tell their story Kellan style. You WILL fall in love with them and you WILL fall madly and deeply in love with the beauty of their day.
It must be said that those heads attached to their shoulders are much more than hat racks. These two smartie pants met while studying at Yale for their undergraduate degrees. While planning their wedding on opposite coasts they were each in graduate school, Ming at Harvard studying architecture and Dan at Berkley working on his doctorate. Ming also, FOR FUN, runs an amazing cupcake recipe blog and started her own invitation line featuring the most clever invitations and paper goods! So you can basically conclude that they are very lazy and not creative whatsoever. Such a shame, such a shame.
No seriously….I was a little bit intimidated at first UNTIL we shot their engagement session. “Down to earth” doesn’t begin to describe them. Engagement sessions are always an interesting sociology experiment to me. You see how couples work together, communicate, act romantically, senses of humor (or lack thereof), and overall you get a glimpse into what their wedding day will probably be like. I can honestly say that Dan and Ming are some of the kindest people I’ve ever met. The way they spoke to one another, encouraged one another, looked lovingly and adoringly at one another. It really blessed me. It’s refreshing to know in a world full of superficiality and “good time” romances….there is true love and respect still alive and well. We just liked them.
So now it is time for the main event. It was a true mash-up of style, class, Virginia awesomeness, creativity and color. Ming grew up in the little mountain town of Pounding Mill, Virginia. Her dad is owner and chef for a converted dairy barn turned BBQ fusion restaurant named Cuz’s Uptown BBQ.
The surrounding grounds played host to the ceremony. Specially chosen lumber was shipped from Canada to build the split-rail fence surrounding the ceremony perimeter.
I can’t begin to explain the cuisine of the day. Talk about fresh. Everything that graced the plates of the wedding guests was just about grown and raised right on property including dozens of varieties of tomatoes. Friends of the family brought in homemade pies to grace the dessert table. Gigantic slabs of beef were grilled right before our eyes. The sights and smells of the day still linger in my senses. I’ll fill in some more details as we go.
Let’s begin with her stunning Vera Wang dress and Louboutin shoes.
Loved Dan’s fresh boutonniere.
A brief sunshower welcomed their First Look together.
The brothers looking on.
Dan’s brother on the left and Ming’s on the right.
An old drafting table and ribbon held the seating cards.
All the guests received a canvas bag with Cuz’s pig logo on it.
The most incredible blue grass music all night.
I LOVE that Ming specifically asked that we take pictures of the workers that day because they were the employees of the restaurant and like family to her. Here are a few I love of Ming’s “extended family”.
IF you are not drooling by now…these are the last few food shots.
These were the favors Ming gave to her guests. Homemade preserves.
She also designed and had printed the pig and airplane fabric. Adorable, no?
One TOWERING white cake and one hilarious groom’s cake. This is a bear being eaten by a shark. Yeah, I don’t get it either, but what I do know is it is awesome! This was made by Dan’s brother.