Tinnell, a stylist, and Marcus, an international basketball player, met online and fell so in love that she flew halfway across the world for their first date. It was a leap of faith that totally paid off. On August 13, 2011, they were married in a lavish ceremony before 250 guests in Houston, Texas. Share their love!
When Tinnell got engaged, like most brides, she started watching every single wedding show she could find. Her favorite was TLC’s Say Yes to the Dress: Atlanta, she applied, and was invited to be on the show, along with her 15-bridesmaids. Despite the massive on-camera search, in the end, she wound up going with the lovely Lazaro gown she first fell in love with at a Houston bridal shop. (Lesson here: Trust your gut!)
“The hunt for the bridesmaid dresses was short and sweet,” admits Tinnell. “I found a beautiful sweetheart neckline, floor length, purple gown online and I fell in love. Only two stores in Houston sold it.I showed all the girls and they loved it as well.” Tinnell’s massive bridal party full of beauties caught the eye of TLC producers and they invited all the ladies to tape an episode of Say Yes to the Dress: Bridesmaids too.
A Hollywood-themed wedding affair wouldn’t be complete without touches of gorgeous bling. Even Tinnell’s bridal bouquet, made with roses and hydrangeas, got a chance to shine. “Bahara Jamea at ”http://plantsnpetals.net/" target=_new>Plants and Petals worked miracles and seriously is one of the best in the business," Tinnell tells us.
“I chose Memorial Drive United Methodist Church because I wanted a church that was beautiful inside,” says Tinnell. “I started Googling Methodist churches and looking at images until I stumbled across this beautiful sanctuary with high ceilings, floor to ceiling stain glass and organ pipes along the back walls, and I knew it was the church.”
“My favorite memory is when the doors opened in the church and I looked down the long aisle and saw my future husband for the first time,” Tinnell remembers. “So many emotions came over me, and I cried the entire way down. Marcus looked so handsome and I couldn’t see anyone but him.”
The Hobby Center, where the couple held their reception, is a theater where plays and musicals are performed. Upon their arrival, their guests nibbled on hors d’oeuvres in the downstairs lobby and lined up at the ticket booth to receive a personalized ticket with their table assignment on it.
After the cocktail hour, guests were escorted upstairs to the grand lobby and seated at their tables. After everyone in the wedding party was introduced, they played a love story about how Marcus and Tinnell met. It was the perfect lead in to their romantic first dance.
After attending a wedding where the starlight came through the windows and lit up the room, Tinnell knew she wanted a similar twinkle at her wedding reception. “I fell in love when I went to tour the hobby center and the lobby had 60-foot windows from floor to ceiling on two of the walls,” Tinnell says. “It was love at first sight.”
Dissatisfied with the initial $900 price quote she was given for the grooms’ cake, Tinnell rethought the ideas and decided to go with basketball themed cake pops, which saved her almost $800. Now that’s what we call smart thinking.
As if the organist and soloist from the ceremony weren’t enough of a musical treat, Tinnell and Marcus hired a live band to perform during the cocktail hour and DJ GT from local station 97.9 The Beat in Houston spun hits during their reception.