Doctors Mary Ndidi Egbuniwe, 30, and Akin Ojo-Carons, 31, met in medical school during a shared rotation and found out they’d both come down with a case of true love. On September 24, 2011, they were married in an outdoor ceremony at The Legare Waring House in Charleston, South Carolina. Share their love!
“The search for my gown was one of the most difficult things I’ve ever been through,” admits Mary. “Before settling on my dress, I halfheartedly purchased another dress. I was never truly in love with it, and it was my older sister who helped me see the light, and loaned me the money, to say yes to my dress.”
Mary’s swept updo with cascading curls was the perfect compliment to her lovely gown.
Mary looked absolutely stunning in her fall ball gown-style Lazaro wedding dress with a fresh water pearl belt, wave skirt and chapel train. “It was the complete opposite of what I wanted and everything that I needed,” she admits.
Their photographer, Tunji Sarumi, captured all of the tender moments of the day.
The girls, who looked amazing in their Jim Hjelm dressed, rocked lovely headpieces and big smiles on Mary and Akin’s special day.
Whenever Mary needed to make a decision regarding their wedding plans, she prayed on it. God came through, all the way, just as she hoped. Their day went off without a single hitch.
We instantly fell for Mary’s bridesmaid’s fierce and feathered couture hair pieces. Absolute perfection!
For her little ladies, Mary chose to decorate white flower girl baskets with rich purple ribbon. Their headbands were made of white mums, white buttons, and mini white carnations.
Mary’s pretty bouquet consisted of purple ranunculus, dark purple lisianthus, and dark purple anemones — a rare flower that’s always a bridal favorite.
“We planned the wedding day together,” says Mary. “It is amazing to know that with a lot of trust and faith, a large event like that could be pulled off. Together we decided on just about everything, although, of course, absolute final decisions rested with me.”
The bridesmaid’s bouquets were made of white carnations, white mums and white babies breaths, and wrapped in double faced satin ribbon and finished with pearl pins. “I didn’t want to spend a big part of my budget on flowers and thought that if I kept it one color, we could use less expensive blooms,” says Mary.
“Our wedding ceremony was held outside in front of the Aisle of Oaks at the Legare Waring House,” Mary tells us. “It rained the entire day. I prayed to God and thanked Him for the day and bringing all of the people we loved together. One hour later, the down pour stopped.”
Akin and his groomsman donned black tuxedos with black bow ties and boutonnieres made up of a piece of dusty miller, a set of blackberries and a little greenery.
“Our mothers and Akin walked down the aisle to ‘Violin Romance No. 2’ by Ludwig Van Beethoven,” says Mary. “Our wedding party walked down to ‘Whatever, Whenever, Whatever’ by Maxwell, and my father and I walked down the aisle to ‘Kissing You’ by Des’ree. All of the music was played by a harpist.”
Mary’s childhood pastor, Dr. Gerald Hopkins, officiated the ceremony and her mother’s current pastor, Pastor Tunde Adnenola, said the opening and closing prayers.
Mary and Akin’s cherished guests gathered beneath the beautiful hanging oak trees to watch the bride and groom come down the aisle, lined with white rose petals, and meet at the altar, which was decorated with two large Kimberly queen ferns.
The lovebirds share a sweet kiss at the altar to seal the deal.
“I wanted the feel of the day to be relaxed, yet elegant,” says Mary. “I wanted everything to be beautiful and seem effortless. It was important for things to be a bit couture and avant garde but not over the top.”
Akin’s groomsman playfully salute him on his special day. This shot gives us butterflies.
Mary and Akin just couldn’t stop kissing after they’d officially become husband and wife. Can you blame them? We sure can’t.
Mary and Akin, who live in New York City, put a lot of thought into choosing their wedding venue. “We wanted something that would be unique to our friends in NY and D.C. but close to home for my family in South Carolina,” she says. “It was also important that our venue be close to water and allow everyone who attended to enjoy the entire weekend.”
Mary’s parents hosted the rehearsal dinner at their beach house on the The Isle of Palm.
Mary and her father share an emotional embrace during their father-daughter dance.
“Our cake was a three tiered lemon cake with vanilla butter cream,” Mary tells us. “It was decorated with a replica of the pearl belt on my wedding dress. We had a grooms’ cake that was red velvet also. It was decorated to look like one half of a Chelsea soccer team Jersey and one half of a Akin’s white lab coat.”
The couple’s bridal party were as lively as could be during the reception, helping the couple celebrate their big day in true party fashion.
Mary’s bridesmaids were ready to battle it out for a chance to catch her lovely bouquet. As favors, the couple gave their guests wine bottle stoppers decorated with hearts on top. “We picked them because we love wine, they’re useful to have and they seemed to fit the feel of the wedding,” she tells us.
Mary hired a deejay to keep the party going during the reception, and her younger sister sang “At Last” by Etta James as the last song of the evening. An excellent choice.
“We took so many beautiful photos the day of the wedding,” says Mary. “Our photographer was gracious enough to also offer us a post-wedding day shoot. We returned the following morning, dressed in our wedding attire, and leisurely strolled around the grounds for our couple portraits.” Now that’s genius.