Michael and Arielle were married at Dover Hall in Richmond, Virginia. The towering stone walls, Tudor-inspired architecture, and intricate carved details throughout the estate transported us to 17th century England. While they had originally planned for a dark and cozy winter wedding, they had to reimagine their wedding as a spring affair. With the help of Kerri Johnson of Elle Loren Co, Arielle and Michael redesigned their wedding. This refined, coral and blush Dover Hall wedding was truly perfect in the end.
The phrase “meant to be” was made for people like Arielle and Mike. They met over twenty years ago, as childhood neighbors and friends. Arielle moved away at age 7. The two reconnected on Facebook of all places and eventually began to date. For Christmas of 2018, Michael gathered both of their families together for a dinner and toast, which ended in the sweet surprise proposal, complete with a custom ornament celebrating the start of their lives together. When they inquired with me, we instantly connected. It was like getting to work for friends. Their vision for their wedding day was exactly the kind of classic style that I love. I was so glad they chose me to capture their day!
Their wedding day felt absolutely royal! Stepping onto the stunning grounds of Dover Hall–which was once the scene of the Bachelorette–I was swept away by the 17th-century architecture, immaculate gardens, and the large reflection pool. We had a beautifully cloudy day, which only threatened rain. The perfectly cool, grey spring weather only added to the English vibes.
Emotions ran high before and during their ceremony. Arielle got to share a private and emotional moment with her father before he walked her down the aisle. As they made their way toward Michael, both of them were tearing up. Michael buried his head on the shoulder of his best man, overwhelmed with joy for this day that had been decades in the making. They exchanged vows, lit their unity candle, and sealed their union with a kiss.
After portraits throughout the Dover Hall estate, we entered their reception space to see tables overflowing with luxurious floral arrangements. The cake table displayed a show-stopping, decadently detailed, gold and blush five-tier cake that was almost too gorgeous to cut. Michael and Arielle danced the night away! Guests and vendors were entertained by two choreographed dances from the bridal party. They ended the night with a sparkler exit, and off they rode to their honeymoon!
Planning: Elle Loren Co
Photography: Hana Gonzalez
Venue & Catering: Dover Hall
Gown: Posh Bridal
Floral Design: Petals and Twigs
Cake: Sweet Fix