10.24.2019 | Alhambra Hall
How We Met
Megan’s sister-in-law, Lindsey is a big fan of Marmaros Productions (who isn’t, am I right?). So when her best friend and college roommate got engaged and needed help coordinating her wedding Lindsey insisted Makenzie Lee look into Marmaros. After getting her and her mother on the phone, we had put them both at ease enough to hire us. And we were so excited not only to have another October wedding but to have a wedding in Charleston!
Every love story is unique and Makenzie Lee & Ryan’s is no different. Read about their adventurous love story and how they went from being Best Friends to falling in love! They were so excited to have all the most important people in their lives coming to their favorite city (and new hometown) to celebrate with them!
“We would like to think our story is a little different and to prove that, we're not even sure where our own story should start. So to take everyone way back, we will start our story from the Summer of 2010.
We were both going into our Sophomore year at Georgia Tech. We lived on campus, took some classes, and basically living the dream. FIJI, Ryan's fraternity, was always one of my favorite places to hangout. And that Summer was the start of our friendship. Somehow what started as a party at FIJI turned into an entire Summer of us going on drives around Atlanta, eating at Zaxby's whenever we found the time and going on walks around campus to discuss our current life "issues". We're both very happy to say we really did start out as best friends first. All throughout college, we were continually there for one another through thick and thin.
I graduated in May 2013 and decided to take a job in Maryland, moving away from Georgia for the first time. I still remember talking with Ryan about how scared I was and worried I made the wrong choice. As always, he helped me through my decision and promised me things would be alright. Little did we both know, one day things would be way more than alright.
Once Ryan graduated in May 2014, he took a full-time job with Boeing in Charleston, SC. Every Christmas we would meet up for dinner or a beer just to catch up and reminisce on old times. Well the last time we had one of these great catch-ups, I dropped the news I had just been hired with Delta as a Flight Attendant. Ryan was SO happy and supportive of me, just like he always was.
Fast forward to March-April of 2017 when I was in the thick of a very stressful 8 week Flight Attendant Training and guess who pops in to show his overwhelming support, none other than my favorite redhead. And honestly, we've been together ever since.
On September 8th, 2018 Ryan proposed on the beach in Charleston in front of our families! He sent me on a scavenger hunt around the city to all of the places that mean the most to us and have made an impact on our relationship. The past 2.5 years have truly been a whirlwind! We have so much fun together and have accomplished so much. We have visited 17 states and 8 countries together, but we're just getting started! We bought a fixer-upper in November of 2018 in Mt. Pleasant and it has been a project, to say the least. Even though it needs a lot of TLC, it is our home and we absolutely love being there and working on it together!”
Down to Business
Between flights for Makenzie Lee and wedding for us, work tried to get in the way of our meetings but we didn't let it! The best time ended up being on Tuesday afternoons. Most of the time we talked on the phone with the occasional Facetime thrown in. We love how technology allows us to connect with our brides even when we are states away!
The Big Day
Alhambra Hall let Makenzie Lee & her family start setting up the day before the wedding, so when we arrived on Wednesday - we jumped right in to help in whatever way we could! Most of the tables were set up, Ryan & Makenzie Lee’s sister was setting up the Donut Wall, Makenzie Lee’s mom Betsy was getting the downstairs welcome table ready. We were asked to decorate the mantle with the garland and candles so we started working! After working for a few hours - it was time for rehearsal (and the reception area was done except for flowers). Once rehearsal was over, the bridal party and family went to dinner and we went as well before heading to bed to rest up for the wedding!
Thursday morning, we woke up to head over to Alhambra Hall because there was still so much to be done! Megan started by getting the outdoor cocktail hour set up with tallboys and stools and of course cornhole! While she was doing that, Brandon and Makenzie Lee’s dad, Robbie started setting up the chairs and arbor for the ceremony & Momma Jerrye and Betsy were getting the bouquets and centerpieces completed. Meanwhile, the girls were getting their hair and makeup done while enjoying their mimosas and the boys started to arrive to finish getting ready!
A lifelong friend came around lunchtime to drop off snacks and more food, but she also brought a homemade “Bridesmaid Cake” which is a fun southern tradition where the bride and her bridesmaids each pull a ribbon that has a charm that was baked into the cake. Each charm has a meaning and is meant to help you see into your future (more information about Bridesmaid Cake Pulls can be found here). So all the girls gathered around the cake to pull their charm out before Makenzie Lee stepped into her dress!
Before their first look, Makenzie Lee and Ryan wanted to do a “First Touch” so they could read their letters from each other and exchange gifts. While Ryan gave letters to his step-mom and sister, Makenzie Lee went to do her first look with her dad - which was so emotional and touching (we can’t keep it together when fathers cry)! The last special moment that needed to happen before the ceremony was Makenzie Lee and Ryan’s sweet first look with some couple photos to follow and Sarah didn’t have to direct them at all! They were just so in love and the photos show it!
Makenzie Lee, Ryan, and their bridal party went back inside while guests started to arrive and find their seats before the ceremony began. From perfect lighting to personal vows this ceremony can we just say, this golden hour ceremony in one of our favorite places still has our heart?!
Guests ventured over to the tallboys, stools, cornhole, and cocktail food while family photos and sunset photos were being taken.
When the sun was gone and all the guests had found their seats, we did introductions and Makenzie Lee & Ryan’s first dance followed by a welcome from Betsy & Robbie then Makenzie Lee & Ryan before Reverand Allison came up to do a blessing so we could start eating! Lewis BBQ brought the best food and got everyone through the buffet line easily! Once everyone was fed and happy, we cut the cake and broke in the donut wall before some of the best speeches we’ve ever heard - complete with emotional letters Ryan wrote his brother and marriage advice from 90’s rappers from Makenzie Lee’s sister. The last thing before opening the dance floor was the final formal dances - Makenzie Lee and her dad did a fun mime dance and Ryan and his step-mom did an emotional dance that ended with pulling his sister up to finish the dance. Once that dance floor opened, it was time to party! The floor was packed the entire night with runs to the donut wall and dessert bar for fuel (is there another way to dance?). We ended the night with sparklers out to a beautiful white Rolls Royce and kissing Makenzie Lee & Ryan goodbye!
Like Makenzie Lee mentioned in their love story, this adorable couple has been to 17 states and 8 countries together! They have a big travel bug and act on it whenever they can! So they decided to apply that notion to their wedding day. As guests dropped off their gifts, they signed the guest book in a unique way. Postcards were provided so guests could leave adventure notes and drop them into the suitcase to help Makenzie Lee & Ryan decide where to travel next! After the ceremony, the outdoor cocktail hour had suitcases that held the food baked by the family along with photos of Makenzie Lee & Ryan’s travels. Lastly, as guests were told to find their seats, they looked at the “Where in the world are you seating” seating chart with destinations as tables. But the fun didn’t stop there! Each table was more than just a destination, it was a place Makenzie Lee & Ryan have traveled together complete with a photo from that location and a story about that location! We love how Makenzie Lee & Ryan customized their wedding to tell their guests more about their love story!
Happily Ever After
We loved working with Makenzie Lee & Ryan and were so happy to have been a part of this special day! We wish them all the best as they enter into their new adventure of marriage and we hope they continue to satisfy their travel bug while making memories and falling more in love.
All Hands on Deck
Venue: Alhambra Hall
Photographer: Sarah Joy Photo
Videographer: Adam Siegel - Siegel Films
Hair & Makeup: Vanity Salon Mt. Pleasant
Florist: Betsy & Jerrye
DJ: Pinnacle Light and Sound LLC
Catering: Lewis BBQ
Bartender: MIX Bar
Officiant: Allison Per-Lee
Getaway Vehicle: Carolina's Executive Limo Line