Melvin recieved a little help from his daughter when it came time to ask Ashley to be his wife. “He told us he was going to take us on a date and that he wanted to show her how a guy is supposed to treat a lady,” she recalls. Aww! See their lovely New Orleans wedding day.
To kick off their wedding weekend, the bride and groom threw a “Welcome to New Orleans” party for their guests. Of course, the bride and groom were perfectly dressed for the occasion.
There was even a custom cake to get guests into the spirit of celebration.
“My ceremony dress was a Maggie Sottero dress,” says Ashley. “It was the very first wedding dress I tried on. I saw it in a magazine, searched for it, and tried it on. I didn’t buy it immediately. I tried other dresses but ended up going back to that one.”
“I know this will sound extremely cliché but I knew the first night I met her that she was The One,” says Melvin. “Her beauty initially caught my attention. She stood out in a room full of women that night at the lounge. It was like she radiated. She had smooth, dark, seemingly flawless skin, long hair and she was the best dressed in the room. But once I started talking to her, she was so down to earth, intelligent and fun. It just made me want to be around her all the time.”
The bride carried a lovely bouquet made of a soft cascade with white mini phalaenopsis orchids, white mini callas, white dendrobium orchids, ivory roses, and frilled tulips.
“He is a nice person,” Ashley shares. “I mean a really nice person. Kind of like those people that are so nice that you wish you could be as nice as them. Yeah, that’s him. He’s so thoughtful and caring. He’s the type of man that would see me getting ready to cook and say, ‘Baby you’ve had a long day, why don’t you take a nap and I’ll cook dinner.’ And, he’s fun. He’s cool, but not too cool for school (I mean he wears onesie pajamas with me!).”
“The weekend we met up in Atlanta he treated me like an absolute queen,” says Ashley of her first romantic rendezvous with Melvin. “He made me feel like I was the most beautiful person in every room we entered. He was catering, affectionate, sweet and everything I had never experienced before. He was very expressive. It was so overwhelming at first that it was a bit uncomfortable, but as the weekend went on, I fell head over heels for him because of the man he showed me he was.”
“The three things that solidified my decision: she is a God-fearing woman, she makes me a better man, and she treats my daughter like her own (and my daughter absolutely loves her),” Melvin shares.
“I love her personality!” Melvin shares. “I love his big heart,” adds his lovely bride.
“I put this relationship in the hands of God and let him direct my path,” says Ashley. “I prayed about this relationship the entire time because I was tired of being with the wrong person. I asked God to lead the way and make it clear whether or not this man was for me. I said yes because my husband is a wonderful man. He is the only man who has ever made me feel as loved as my father loves me, and that’s a hard shoe to fill. He balances me and allows me to balance him. He walks beside me in all of my journeys, encourages me, comforts me. He is truly my best friend.”
We just love this floral and brooch bag. So unique!
“For the groomsman we we were going for something sophisticated and sexy,” says Ashley. “I picked and my husband approved.”
Ashley’s bridesmaids were pretty in pink in their blush Lazaro gowns.
“I knew before I was engaged that I wanted to have my ceremony under a tent and the reception at Mardi Gras World,” says Ashley. “Luckily Mardi Gras World had a tent. The Grand Mansion where we had the party was definitely the icing on the cake and I looked no further after seeing it. I loved that the ceremony and dinner spaces were blank slates that I can customize to my own taste.”
Ashley walked down the aisle to John Legend’s “All Of Me.” “Looking into her eyes at the altar I was thinking, I can’t believe I’m the person marrying this wonderful woman in front of me,” adds the groom.
“We wrote our own vows,” says Ashley. “I also wrote vows to his daughter and he wrote vows to my two younger brothers.”
“I had given up on finding love and I thought that I would never find the woman of my dreams before I met Ashley,” Melvin admits.
“Never in a million years did I think I would find love across the country on a random vacation at the time I did,” says Ashley. “I found it when I stopped looking and when I decided to just live and let God bring me a husband.”
“The formal dinner was in a grand ballroom just a few feet from the ceremony,” says Ashley. “It was A-MAZ-ING! When the guests entered they signed in at the guest table and were then directed to search for their name and seating assignment that was etched into two 10’ tall white mirrors. When you walked into the room it was jaw dropping.”
“The entire place was piped and draped with ivory draping, the tables were decorated with purple linens, candles, candelabras, purple orchids, and clear and silver plate settings,” says the bride.
The couple must be huge John Legend fans because they even chose one of his romantic hit for their first dance, “You and I (Nobody in the World)”
“I wanted a wedding that was unforgettable with lots of traditional elements and lots of surprises,” says the bride. “We were definitely able to achieve that with the décor, location and entertainment. Whenever I was asked what theme I wanted I would say ‘timeless extravagance.’”
“Although the dinner was buffet style there was a dinner menu placed at each setting too,” says Ashley who refused to skimp on a single detail for her big day.
“We had a six tier cake with our initials on it,” Ashley describes. “The flavors were almond, vanilla and chocolate. It was pretty fancy. Each tier was different. We didn’t go too crazy on the flavors but we wanted a really good cake. And good it was, because there was not one slice left over.”
“The sweetheart table was to die for,” says the bride. “It was a mirrored table with tons of candles and flowers cascading off of the table, a huge sweetheart sofa, two very large flower arrangements, two more 10’ white mirrors behind the sofa, and a chandelier hanging directly above us. There were lots of uplights and spotlights that set the ambiance of the room.”
A grand groom’s cake for a true sports fan.
“She is smart as hell with an amazing career, and one of the most selfless people I know who is extremely family oriented,” says Melvin. “She is a southern girl from New Orleans so she definitely has that ‘ride or die’ factor (in a good way) and knows how to treat a man, and she is fun, fun, fun!”
We’re used to seeing the bride swap gowns, but it’s not often that we see the groom make an outfit change. Melvin swapped his tuxedo jacket during the reception. We love it!
Ashley, Melvin and their guests partied the night away.
Three-hundred and fifty guests were in attendance for the couple’s big wedding weekend in NOLA.
“It made me extremely happy to see my wife the happiest I had ever seen her,” says Melvin.
“It was more than I could have ever imagined,” says Ashley. “It is a day that I replay in my head over and over and over again. I wish I could experience that day all over again.”
Join us as we congratulate the bride and groom on their marital bliss and don’t forget to leave the happy couple a little comment love below. Want to see your wedding featured in Bridal Bliss?