Commercial Real Estate Consultant Jade Patterson, 25, met Derivatives Trader Christopher Dean, 25, when they were freshman in college attending the same Jackie Robinson Foundation event. They only met briefly, but they held on to their friendship and by senior year it had blossomed into a love greater than either had ever known.
This summer Jade and Chris will wed at the Mayfair Farms in West Orange, NJ. The lovebirds are busy planning a blush and grey outdoor garden wedding that’s sure to show off their signature style.
During their New York City photo shoot Chris and Jade made sure to stop by the famous Waldorf Astoria where he proposed to Jade and they shared their first dance.
Chris and Jade’s very first official date was supposed to be to see a game at Madison Square Garden but when they had trouble with their tickets they decided to stroll around the city instead. It was on this walk that they realized their connection was way more than friendly.
“When I first met Chris as a freshman I thought he was cute, confident, had a dynamic personality and was ridiculously funny,” Jade says. “I was a little intimidated by him because he teased me a lot the first year, however somehow we were very comfortable with each other very early on.”
“I was attracted to Jade the first time I met her in 2005; she seemed to have characteristics I look for in women,” says Chris. “She was cute, smart, and athletic. Although she seemed somewhat sheltered, she was funny and had a great personality.”
“We had a lot of natural chemistry, so it became very clear to me quickly that she was going to be The One,” Chris tells us about the moments he first fell in love with Jade. “I still remember the first time it crossed my mind. We had literally spent the entire day sitting in the room talking, telling stories, not eating, and listening to music.”
Chris showed Jade his heart early on. “At one point, I could tell how comfortable he was around me because he began to sing to me, and I always wanted to date a man who could sing,” says Jade. “I got butterflies, and I thought, I’m going to marry him one day.”
Jade had her heart set on going to Disney World as a child, but was never able to. This was something she shared once in conversation with Chris, so for her 25th birthday he surprised her with a trip to Orlando, Florida to visit Epcot Center and Universal Studios.
Chris and Jade share so many things in common. He’s a member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity Inc. and she’s a proud member of Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Inc., they’re both Jackie Robinson Foundation scholars (it’s how they met), and they were both business majors.
Chris and Jade like to enjoy themselves and do some good when they’re on a date. She tells us their “date nights” vary tremendously. Sometimes they grab dinner at a nice restaurant or play on the same flag football team and other days they work together as mentors for service program MOVE.
In 2010 Jade’s mother was diagnosed with cancer. It was a very dark time in her life but she says Chris helped her through it and it strengthened their bond significantly.
Jade and Chris make a picture perfect couple as they sit cuddled together on a New York City park bench, lost in their own world of love.
Congratulations Jade and Chris. The ESSENCE.com family wishes you nothing but the best in your future endeavors as husband and wife. To see more great shots from their New York City engagement shoot visit The Bride’s Cafe now.