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When hanging out with Chrissy on her wedding day I felt like we were friends just catching up on life. The hour drive to Pretty Place from the Mountain Lodge gave us some good girl time. I got to hear the story of how her and Charlie met and fell in love.

We always enjoy getting to shoot at Pretty Place, even if the lighting there is really tough! This is our 4th wedding at this gorgeous location and we have learned how to use special lighting to help with correctly exposing both the wedding party and the mountains in the background. It is simply lovely up there. The views are stunning and one can’t help but notice how quiet it is on top of the mountain.

Here is more about Chrissy and Charlie and their wedding day from their perspective.

A bit about  Charlie:  born in Hollywood Florida, moved to NC to pursue his dream of working on a NASCAR team.  Dad of two girls (Courtney and Lily).

A bit about Christina…born and raised in the foothills of the NC mountains, mom of two girls (Madeline and Taegan).

How did you meet?  We meet while we were both working at Richard Childress Racing.

Describe your first date? Technically our first romantic date was to Todd English Pub in Las Vegas (we were in town for work at the race).  We were trying to avoid being seen by co-workers because we wanted to avoid gossip, but of course, we ran into several people we knew there.  Even in a city the size of Vegas we managed to get busted!

How long have you been together? 4 and a half years, my Vegas gamble paid off!

What is your favorite hobbies and activities to do as a couple? We enjoy time with our kids most, they are our world.  As a family we love the outdoors.

Who popped the question and HOW? Charlie popped the question.  He had planned to ask me during dinner out with the girls, my mom, and his grandfather but he never felt like the moment was right so everyone but me was wondering what was going on when he didn’t ask…later that night at home he asked me when we were alone.

Why did you pick Pretty Place and Mountain Lodge? We have visited before and feel so close to God in that amazing place.  I have never seen anything like it.

What adjective best describes your spouse on your wedding day? Charlie said: beautiful  I say: handsome and assured

What tangible detail of your wedding day did you love the most? Charlie’s Smokey and The Bandit themed grooms cake

How many guests did you invite to the wedding? Which of you had more guests at the wedding, you or your spouse? 50; fairly equal

What did guests eat at the reception?

Hors D’ourves: Beef Meatballs in a Sweet and Tangy Sauce, Shrimp Cocktail, Warm Spinach & Artichoke Dip with Bread, Assorted Finger Sandwiches (additional in lieu of dessert option)

Entrees: Boneless chicken breast smothered with caramelized onions, sautéed mushrooms and Gruyere cheese and slow roasted and braised brisket of beef

Sides: Potato and sweet onion gratin, Marinated grilled vegetables, Rice and vegetable pilaf

Salad: Chef Starr’s Feta Salad

What is the one of the funniest things that happened on your wedding day? Bears crossed the road in front of us and some guests on the way to the chapel, we decided it was good luck.

What was your first dance song and why did you pick it? “That’s the Way Love Goes” by Waylon Jennings…we are both huge classic country and Waylon fans so we HAD to have one of his songs as our first dance.

What stood out to you the most when you think of your wedding? Every single person there was so important to us…no one was an invite out of politeness or necessity…we kept it small and intimate and comfortable.

What is on your “bucket list” to do together as a married couple? Raise happy, thriving daughters and travel (I am typing this from the Eiffel Tower).


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Shout out to these wedding professionals that made this day rock!

Wedding Venue – Pretty Place/ Symmes Chapel

Reception Venue – Mountain Lodge & Conference Center

Wedding coordinator –  Mary and Megan with Mary Bell Events

Dress Designer –  Casablanca Bridal

Where you purchased your dress –  Southern Bride

Makeup artist –  Blush Asheville – Wendy Ballance

Hair designer –  Swell Salon – Hannah Bailey

Floral designer –  Reggie’s Flower Shoppe

Caterer –  Mountain Lodge & Conference Center

DJ or Band –  Livesound Entertainment – Kevin Johnston

Officiant –  Rev Richard Payne

Cake designer –  Sugar Cloud Baking Company

Jamie and Sam’s wedding at The Inn on Biltmore Estate is way up on the list with our favorite Biltmore Estate Weddings. We love how this couple mixed elegance with a bit of goofiness, as you can tell by a few of the photos. A lot of couples request “goofy shots” but few have plunged into them like this. I adore this couple.

Here is a bit more about this couple from their point of view.

A bit about Jamie… Jamie grew up around Annapolis, MD and moved to Wilmington, NC to attend college at UNCW in 2003. She has been living in NC ever since! She currently is working on finishing up her PhD in biology from NC State.

A bit about Sam… Sam grew up in Raleigh, NC. He also attended UNCW for his undergraduate degree in biology. Sam currently works at a biotechnology company in the Research Triangle Park.

How did you meet? We met while we were undergrads at UNCW. We were living in the same apartment complex and a neighbor was having a get together one night. Sam came by with my neighbor and asked if I wanted to stop by later and hangout. I did! He ended up officially asking me out on a date just about a week later.

Describe your first date? Our first date was modest and we were quite young, Sam was 20 and I was 22. Sam asked my roommate, Tabitha, for permission to take me on a date! Ha! He took me to El Cerro Grande for Mexican food. Sam said his stomach was upset and actually didn’t eat dinner. Many years later I found out it was because he only had $11 at the time but he still paid for my meal. Lucky I’m a cheap date with my quesadilla. After dinner we walked around Barnes & Noble and talked for hours.

How long have you been together? Not long…just 13 years!

What is your favorite hobbies and activities to do as a couple? I know this is cheesy, but we really are best friends and do so much together. We love to eat and drink and enjoy a nice dinner together. We play pool (billiards) often and we both play with APA, an amateur pool league. We cook together, and we love to travel but also just veg and watch movies with our cat Tubby. We also nerd it out and talk science…a lot.

Who popped the question and HOW? Sam popped the question while we were on a vacation in Key West. Sam made dinner reservations at a restaurant on Sunset Key that night for dinner. We took a ferry boat over and we sat outside along the waters edge and had the most fabulous dinner. We watched the sunset over the water and the whole sky glowed with pinks and oranges. I told Sam that I couldn’t imagine being anywhere else with anyone else at that moment in time. That’s when he got down on one knee and I started to cry! After all this time together I was still completely surprised. We waited until we got home before telling our families so we could enjoy the moment, just the 2 of us.

How long had you been dating when you became engaged? Again not long…just 11 years 😉

How long after you were engaged did you get married? We got married after being engaged for 2 years.

Why did you pick Asheville and the Inn at Biltmore? We have always loved the mountains, and just connect with them. Instead of beach trips, we more commonly skip town for Asheville for a weekend getaway. Many birthday, anniversary, and just because trips we’ve taken there together. When we talked about where to get married, there was no hesitation in picking Asheville. Especially awesome to be able to share one of our favorite places with our friends and family! For our venue, The Inn on Biltmore, it just fit us and the feel we were trying to achieve for our wedding day. It’s just so beautiful with the mountains in the background and the ballroom was the perfect size for our party. The staff at Biltmore is absolutely amazing and played a part in so many aspects of our wedding from flowers to our cake. It was peace of mind knowing we were in their hands for our big day.

What adjective best describes your spouse on your wedding day? Her: beautiful Him: handsome

What tangible detail of your wedding day did you love the most? This is a tough one. For me it was my mother walking me down the aisle. Sam says it was holding my hands during the ceremony and dancing to Bohemian Rhapsody at the end of the night.

How many guests did you invite to the wedding? Which of you had more guests at the wedding, you or your spouse? We had about 70 guests attending our wedding. We both have small families and most of our friends were there for both of us! It was pretty equal.

What did guests eat at the reception? Appetizer: Roasted prawns with corn spoonbread with piquillo lime butter (Sam could drink this sauce), Salad, then dinner: Petit filet and lobster tail with truffle Bearnaise sauce. And of course cake: hazelnut and chocolate cake with mousse and buttercream.I know I’m probably biased cause it was my wedding cake, but really I think this was the best cake I’ve ever put in my mouth.

What is the one of the funniest things that happened on your wedding day? Well there were many funny and unpredictable moments on our wedding day. The funniest had to be when I was tossing the bouquet. I’ve seen so many brides toss the bouquet and it goes like 2 feet. So in my head I’m thinking just throw it hard enough to make it to the ladies. What happened was I threw it so hard and high that it hit the ceiling of the ballroom!!! Haha! I ended up having to throw it again.

What was your first dance song and why did you pick it? Our first dance song was “The Summer Wind” by Frank Sinatra. When we first started dating, I think it was our 3rd date, we walked over to the Blockbuster movies (now I’m aging us!) near our apartment complex to rent a movie. On the walk back, Sam grabbed my hand and just spun me in the parking lot. He just started dancing with me and singing me this Sinatra song. “The summer wind…came blowing in…from across the sea…” It was so romantic. And from that point on when he wanted to bring that feeling back he would sing it to me. When it came time for picking a song for our first dance there was no question it would be this song. And during our first dance, he sang it to me again 🙂

What stood out to you the most when you think of your wedding? Just how beautiful the day was and how we could feel the love between the two of us and the love from all our friends and family. Everyone was just so excited this was finally happening!

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inn_at_biltmore_weddings_0044Shout out to these professionals that made this wedding rock.

  • Rosalie I. Nabors - Just love the pictures!

  • Betty Wyatt - These are gorgeous!! I was actually at Biltmore on this day. We were on the bus leaving to go to the parking lot when you all were in front of the house getting ready to take pictures. How exciting to see these.

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When I walked up to Sam on his wedding day I told him how much we loved bright orange Indian attire! He then looked at me with a smile and asked “How is this for adding some diversity to your portfolio?” And I couldn’t agree more. What a unique wedding!! We are so excited that this couple from Portland decided to have an Asheville wedding at Yesterday Spaces. They were simply a joy to be around! And a dance party with the finger lights? Whoa. We had a blast!

Here is a little bit of their story straight from Elina and Sam. NOTE: I love how they met.

A bit about Elina– Graduate student, alpaca enthusiast, rock climber

A bit about Sam– 3d animator, coffee enthusiast, breakfast chef

How did you meet?– We met in college through mutual friends and started dating shortly after Sam accidentally punched me in the face while dancing at a party.

Describe your first date? We spent about 4 hours making a vegetable pot pie. The video clip from this was shown at out wedding. (We were also attempting to record a cooking YouTube show).

How long have you been together? 4 years this past April

What is your favorite hobbies and activities to do as a couple? We like hiking, watching animations (and lots of shows generally meant for kids), we are very into coffee, and our cat from the garbage, Numbers. Also we are very pro alpaca.

Who popped the question and how? Sam popped the question with a video game he created. It involved me having to direct a car across the country (in the style of our cross country road trip) and pick up all of the coffee cups along the way. When I digitally arrived in Portland he had his digital character propose Oregon trail style.

How long had you been dating when you became engaged? 3 1/2 years

How long after you were engaged did you get married? 8 months later

Why did you pick Asheville? Sam’s grandmother lives there. It was also a good middle ground for our families to meet.

What adjective best describes your spouse on your wedding day? Hot.

What tangible detail of your wedding day did you love the most? The finger lights.

How many guests did you invite to the wedding? And, which of you had more guests at the wedding, you or your spouse? 120 were invited and we had about the same amount each.

What did guests eat at the reception? Melas Indian food

What is the one of the funniest things that happened on your wedding day? We asked the DJ to make sure our friend David was dancing the entire time the music played. David had an energy drink mid dance and actually managed to dance the whole time.

What stood out to you the most when you think of your wedding? The giant group hug at the end of our wedding. There was a lot of love in there.

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Wedding coordinator – Michelle LaCosse with Party Envy

Venue coordinator – Arik and Aaron

Makeup artist – Doll Box

Hair designer – Doll Box

Floral designer – Michelle LaCosse with Party Envy

Caterer – Mela

DJ or Band- Lucas the DJ booked through A Bride’s DJ

Officiant – Travis Moschak

Cake designer – Karen Donateli

S U B S C R I B E
T W I T T E R
I N S T A G R A M
F A C E B O O K