A fresh and beautiful oceanside wedding in Charleston graces the blog today – Emily and Ash forged a love across the ocean that brought them both together (on one side of it!).
from the bride, Emily: “Ash and I met for the first time about 10 years ago through work. He was in the London office and I was in the North Carolina office. We had a quick interaction but lost touch until 2016 when another work trip led us back to each other. We were still in separate countries at this point and spent most of our days texting and talking on the phone with a few visits every couple of months. Eventually, we officially became a couple and would travel across the Atlantic every 4-6 weeks to see each other. In 2020 when Covid hit, we were separated for months at a time and only able to see each other by traveling to the Caribbean because of travel bans. Ash was also awaiting his work visa to move to the US. In June 2021, after a trip to Jamaica, we got engaged! A few months later, Ash finally received his work visa and moved to the US full-time. We were finally able to begin our lives together in the same country and looked forward to our wedding in April 2022.
Our vision for a wedding day was for it to be a day filled with family and friends in a beautiful setting with great food and drinks, and lots of dancing. Since everyone would be traveling from out of town (and some from out of Country), we wanted the day to feel easy and relaxing which is why we picked The Cottages on Charleston Harbor. The ceremony and reception took place in one location and most guests stayed on-site so it was a quick walk to the event. It was very important to us that our guests felt like it was not just one day but a whole weekend getaway and it sure did deliver!
Given the venue was set against the harbor, we really wanted the view of the water and palm trees to shine. Underneath a sailcloth tent, rustic farmhouse tables and simple place settings were set on a grassy field. We added white and blush florals, greenery, and lots of candles and twinkle lights for just the right amount of elegance. One of our favorite touches was our signature cocktails called Southern Belle and Prince Charming, which paid tribute to our international relationship. We also included table names of famous London neighborhoods to incorporate Ash being from London. It was such a special touch! Another highlight was having a live band. The dance floor was full the entire night and everyone had a blast dancing. It was awesome to see our families and friends dancing together, some of whom had just met that weekend. It was an incredible event that we will cherish forever!”
What were your first impressions of one another?
Ash and I first met working at the same company but in different offices – he was in London and I was in North Carolina. We met at a work event when he traveled to NC. He often reminds me that he immediately liked me and I wouldn’t give him the time of day but I was really just shy because he was cute and had a British accent! Years later, we reconnected on another trip and spent months texting, talking on the phone, and spending time together on a few trips to London. This eventually blossomed into a 5 year long distance relationship before Ash moved to NC.
Describe a hurdle you had to overcome in your relationship or during your wedding planning.
The biggest hurdle in our relationship was being long distance but we made it work by visiting each other or meeting in other locations about every month or so. This became especially challenging when Covid hit in 2020 as we were separated for many months but eventually were able to meet in the Caribbean. We got engaged in 2021 which was also difficult not knowing exactly when Ash would be here permanently and how international travel would impact the wedding. Luckily, Ash was able to move here in October 2021 so we could feel confident about our April 2022 wedding plans!
What part of your wedding day was/is most important to you?
It was most important to us for all of guests to feel like it was an entire weekend celebration and not just one day since everyone traveled from out of town (including internationally). The wedding location was perfect for everyone to stay close together and enjoy the amenities of the property, grab coffee and breakfast together in the mornings, and overall spend quality time together not just on our wedding day but the days leading up to it.
What is your favorite thing about each other?
Emily’s favorite thing about Ash is that he makes me laugh all day long. He is also kind and genuine and everyone that meets him immediately feels like they’ve known him for ages. Ash’s favorite thing about Emily is how loving and caring she is and the warmth she has for her friends and family.
What was your favorite part about planning your wedding?
Our favorite part about planning the wedding was picking out details that were special to us like picking out songs that were meaningful to us and writing our own vows. Also, my 5 year old niece was very into the wedding and all the details so we loved having her be involved so many of the details.
If you had one piece of advice for other couples, what would it be?
Our advice would be to start early and take care of as many details months prior so you can eliminate last minute stress. Also, if you have an outdoor wedding, don’t check the weather until days before! I checked the weather 2 weeks out and it said rain so I stressed up until the wedding day which ended up being a perfectly sunny day – we could not have had better weather. Make sure to have a contingency plan (like buying 50 white umbrellas like I did) if you do have an outdoor wedding so you can be prepared for rain.
Ash + Emily Wedding from Madeline Hewett on Vimeo.
Photographer: Summer Adams Photography
Venue: The Cottages on Charleston Harbor
Stylist / Planner / Designer: Beautiful Bride Events
Floral Designer: Fresh Weddings & Events
Dress Designer: Lillian West
Cake Designer: Bakies at I’on
Makeup Artist: Coastal Glam Hair & Makeup
Hair Stylist: Coastal Glam Hair & Makeup
Mens Formalwear: Suitsupply
Rentals: Simply Elegant Rentals & Snyder Events
Accessories / Decor: Cartier
Videographer: By The Sea Films
Rings: The Clear Cut
Bridal Shoes: Kaileep
Bridal Earrings: Olive & Piper
Bridesmaid Gowns: Asos
Live Band: Legacy Band
Catering: Good Food Catering