Memory, 30, an IT consultant, and Stanley, 33, a teacher and sports coach, were introduced by mutual friends during a weekend museum crawl. The exhibits weren’t very memorable, but they sure were impressed with each other. Two blissful years later, Stanley popped the question. The lovebirds were married on September 1, 2012, in an intimate Southern-style ceremony in Nashville, Tennessee. Share their love!
“I knew that in order to be on a journey such as marriage with a man, that he would have to understand that I was human, and that I make mistakes,” Memory says. “Stan has always loved me through my mistakes, and because of this, it makes it easy to love him through his. He’s the one!”
For Memory, her wedding day was all about the little details. She had this sweet custom sign made to mark her bridal suite.
Finding her stunning Mikaella wedding gown was much easier than Memory expected. “I walked into a bridal shop in Nashville and someone was actually returning a dress. To the returner’s dismay, the shop did not accept returns. The woman just wanted the dress out of her possession so she left it there. The saleswoman asked if I would be interested in trying it on because it seemed like it was my size. It fit perfectly and only needed a hem. Plus, she gave me an amazing deal! She pretty much gave me the dress!”
In a unique twist, Memory chose to walk down the aisle carrying a non-floral brooch bouquet that also doubled as her “something borrowed.”
Pretty blue shoes for the bride are always a sure bet for your "something blue."
Memory paid tribute to her hubby's favorite football team with a fun Oakland Raiders-themed garter belt.
“I had honestly said yes to Stan long before he even asked me,” says Memory. “I knew that this man was solely engineered for me.”
"We decided to see each other before the ceremony so that hopefully we wouldn’t cry at the altar," reveals Memory.
“I had one matron of honor, Kenetria Harris, and I asked her to choose a dress that would fit her best,” says Memory. “Her dress was designed by ABS. Black was a fitting color for the entire wedding theme.”
Stanley and his two best men chose custom Calvin Klein tuxedos to make a real splash on the big day.
For their wedding flowers, Memory and Stanley kept things simple, using yellow calla lilies throughout the ceremony and reception to complement their yellow, black and white Southern affair.
“What I love most about Stanley is his character and his will to persevere,” Memory says. “Because he is a teacher, his character means so much to him. Whenever we’re out, it never fails: A child will run up to him and say, ‘Mr. Johnson! Mr. Johnson! Do you remember me?’ — and he remembers every one of them. He knows what he was put on this earth to do."
“We knew we both wanted a Southern-style wedding — outside, mason jars, etc.,” says Memory. She and Stanley decided to hold their ceremony and reception at the Belle Meade Plantation.
The handsome groom was all smiles on his big day. (And what a lovely smile it is!)
The lovebirds decided to hold their afternoon outdoor ceremony in the Boxwood Garden on the plantation. Guests were asked to wear black and white only, and while they waited for the ceremony to begin they were served sweet tea and lemonade in mason jars.
A stunning portrait of the lovely bride on her brother's arm as she prepares to meet Stanley at the altar.
A string trio played “Here Comes the Bride” when it came time for beautiful Memory to glide down the aisle. Her brother had the pleasure of walking her down the aisle, while her father officiated the ceremony.
“Believe it or not, we were originally going to get married in Miami, on the beach,” Memory tells us. “But as we started to think about our loved ones and their budgets, we decided to have the wedding in Nashville.”
“The plantation’s garden is amazing without any decorations, so we chose a simple calla lily setting right behind the officiant — that was it,” says Memory of the thinking behind the altar décor.
During their ceremony, the couple lit a unity candle to join their families, and Memory’s father, the officiant, held a “blessing of the hands” ritual.
In lieu of a traditional bridal party, Memory and Stanley chose to have just one matron of honor and two best men.
Overjoyed groom Stanley gives his best man a (real!) high five. Now this is an awesome photo!
“True love found me,” Memory insists. “I just chose to obey it.”
“We knew that when all the cake had been eaten, the broom had been jumped, and the guests went home, the things that would remain would be our photos and our video, so we spent a little more on them,” says Memory. The majority of brides confess that splurging on photography was the best decision they made.
“Our reception décor was very simple,” says Memory. “Our colors were black, white, and yellow, so everything for the most part was black and white — the flowers added the yellow. Each tablecloth was a different pattern of black and white.”
For their first dance as husband and wife, Memory and Stanley chose Kem’s “Love Calls.”
“We planned the wedding together, but for the most part, Stanley gave me free rein to lead things,” the bride tells us. “He loved planning the cake and food, however.”
Each reception table featured a mix of lemons, candles and calla lily centerpieces. This is an elegant and budget-friendly combination that works every time.
The bride and her father and the groom and his mother all danced together to the feel-good tune “Happy Feelings” by Frankie Beverly & Maze. We love the idea of sharing the memory and the spotlight together with your parents. Great call, Memory and Stanley!
Wedding planner Kasey Hills helped Stanley and Memory create the Southern-inspired wedding of their dreams. “Wedding planners are a must,” the bride insists. “Even if you are a DIY bride, planners keep you organized. In my case, I travel every week and because of that I needed a full-time planner.”
Memory's sorority sisters serenaded her at the reception party. It's so nice to see sisters sticking together throughout life's most important moments.
The newlyweds chose patterned lighting effects to give their modern reception style a chic boost.
As a special surprise for their guests, Memory and Stanley had a fun photo booth set up on site for them to take fierce and fabulous photos as keepsakes.
“We had the Julius the Genius live band perform at the reception,” says Memory. “Stan’s line brother Chauncey Springer was our DJ.”
Memory makes memories with her girls in the photo booth. So sweet!
Fashion-forward bride Memory switched gowns before making a grand exit with her new husband. We love this Grecian toga-style look.
One of Memory’s biggest money-saving secrets was negotiating. She tells us she negotiated every single detail and fought to get the right price for everything she truly wanted to make happen for her wedding day. The result: a beautiful wedding that she and her new hubby didn't have to regret the morning after.
Two days after their spectacular wedding weekend, the new Mr. and Mrs. Johnson were off to Aruba for a romantic island honeymoon. Did you enjoy their romantic, Southern ceremony style? Tell us your favorite details below and leave your well wishes for the newlyweds. Want to see your wedding featured in Bridal Bliss? Email us now!