Bridal Bliss: Xenia and Sheldon

College sweethearts Xenia and Sheldon’s shared love of music brought them closer during undergrad at Louisiana State University. Normally she’s not a fan of surprises, but when he popped the question over Easter dinner, she was all smiles. Share their love!

Charli Penn Nov, 27, 2013

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“Sheldon fit right in with my family,” says Xenia. “We have an amazing friendship.  We are able to be completely honest with each other and we share a lot of the same values and beliefs. Also, seeing how well our families got along from the beginning made me realize this was something I wanted to last forever.”

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Charlie McLoughlin from The Makeup Lab Artistry in New Orleans helped the excited bride look perfect on her big day.

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As Xenia and her bridesmaids sat down for her and makeup application, their pretty gowns hung neatly in the suite, making for a sweet photo opp.

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Xenia kept things coordinated when it came to her bridal accessories. What a sweet and romantic garter belt choice.

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Xenia and her bridesmaids pose pretty for the camera in their matching silk robes.

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Even the flower girls were all smiles before the ceremony. How sweet is this portrait?

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“My wedding dress was by Blue by Enzoani,” says the bride. “It had a strapless lace bodice, drop waist and flared tulle bottom with a huge train.” And, you looked absolutely lovely in it, Xenia.

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“I wanted fun, non-traditional shoes that I could definitely wear again,” says Xenia. “The shoes were by Kate Spade. I chose the style ‘Charm,’ which was a fun multicolor, glittery slingback shoe.”

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The bridesmaids’ dresses were from Bari Jay. “I chose coral because I knew the color would look gorgeous on all skin types and it went with the springy, yet fun and different feel I wanted,” says Xenia.

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Although Xenia’s florist gave them different flowers than they paid for, the happy bride made the best of a bad situation and posed with the pretty blooms just the same.

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"I wanted to stay far away from the traditional black tuxedos and provide my groomsmen with something they could actually wear and own after my wedding day," says Sheldon.

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Adorable little ones dressed in matching attire almost stole the show on the big day. Would you look at those cheeks?

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We love that Xenia and her girls had fun with the photographer and put their own spin on traditional bridal party portraits.

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“It felt great being a groom,” says Sheldon. “I believe that I was probably more hands on than most grooms because I really wanted to have our personalities put on display in so many different aspects of our wedding day.”

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Sheldon and Xenia’s “first look” was super cute. Don’t you just love the look of nervous, happy, anticipation on the groom’s face? It made us melt!

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“It felt amazing to be a bride,” says Xenia. “It was definitely everything I thought it would be.”

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“I hate to be so cliché, but I definitely felt like a princess,” says Xenia. “The entire day I may have been floating on cloud nine.”

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Creative bride Xenia found unique ways to put a spin on traditional wedding elements. Why would a ring bearer need a pillow when he had a ring box that cute? We love it!

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“I prayed to remain calm and enjoy every second of the day because I knew it would go by extremely fast, and thankfully, that’s exactly what I did,” insists Xenia.

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“I knew Xenia was the one when I felt comfortable confessing to her all of my aspirations and personal fears,” says Sheldon. “Her level of compassion and thoughtfulness brought perfect balance to my life.”

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“As a kid growing up, I always knew I would get married at St. Peter Claver Catholic Church,” says Xenia. “I was more than excited to complete the sacrament of holy matrimony in the church where I grew up and attended grade school from kindergarten thru eighth grade. I made my first communion and confirmation there.”

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As Xenia walked down the aisle with her stepfather a soloist sang “You For Me” by Johnny Gill.

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"We wrote our own vows and asked our maid and honor and best man to proof our vows to make sure they were similar in style, since we couldn’t reach each others," says Xenia.

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The couple’s wedding officiate was Xenia’s priest of 22 years. She was overwhelmed by the symbolism of the moment.

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“Not even sure if I can accurately put into words how it felt at the altar,” says Xenia. “I felt extremely blessed and blissful. Just knowing that this was the man I would be spending the rest of my life with filled my heart with joy.”

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Sheldon and Xenia make their marriage "official" by sharing a romantic smooch.

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Introducing Mr. and Mrs. Garrett!

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A group photo of Xenia and Sheldon with their bridal party that's only missing a frame. Someone get this one on the wall, quick!

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"It felt like heaven on my wedding," says Sheldon. "I felt like I had reached my first experience of self-actualization."

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Anissa at Elegance by ACE handled all of the couples’ planning needs and was responsible for making Xenia and Sheldon’s vision of a custom wedding day come alive. We’d say it was a job well done.

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Sheldon and Xenia danced to Anthony Hamilton's "The Point Of It All" for their first dance.

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The reception centerpieces were made of coral, peach, blush and light blue garden roses and carnations.

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“Sheldon actually found this cake on a wedding site and I loved it,” Xenia admits. “So, we went with this design.”

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The groom’s cake was styled to look like an iPhone with Beats by Dre headphones attached. “On the screen was a Jay Z song from his Reasonable Doubt album,” Xenia explains “The bakery (Haydel’s Bakery) scanned the image to make it look like he was actually listening to the song and had the actual artwork from the album on it. They did an amazing job!”

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There were nothing but sweet memories for the bride and groom who were all smiles as they made the first cut into their wedding cake.

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All the single ladies lined up for a chance to catch Xenia's lovely bouquet.

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Sheldon goes for Xenia's garter belt while their guests cheer him on.

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"Anissa and her team coordinated all decorating, table assembly, lighting and more for the reception," says Xenia. "She also acted as my right hand woman through the rehearsal, morning of the wedding and reception. I never thought I would have needed or used a coordinator, but I am so happy I did."

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In addition to their delectable cake, Xenia and Sheldon's guests enjoyed sweet treats from a custom dessert table. Yum!

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Did you enjoy Xenia and Sheldon's festive wedding day as much as we did? Leave the happy couple some comment love below and tell us about your favorite details.


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# Weddings