Two brides, two personalities, and two distinct visions converged to give life to a profoundly special dual union. Ashlyn & Karyssa's wedding concept was infused with the notion of the beautiful compromises that lovebirds create together. In our conversation, we delved into every facet of event preparation with Ashlyn, all the while discovering the intricacies of their love story.
Tell us a bit about yourselves.
Karyssa and I actually met while we were both nurses at a hospital in Lincoln, NE. I trained her, it was a real Grey’s Anatomy type of thing. After we met and started dating, we decided to become travel nurses when the pandemic hit. So, we traveled for about three years and got to explore the country. Some of our favorite cities were Charlotte, San Diego, Salt Lake City, and Portland. We cherished this time together, growing as individuals and as a couple, while exploring the country. Our similarities and differences balance each other out beautifully, and I think it works well for us. I’m definitely the golden retriever, type B energy, to her black cat, type A personality. My hobbies include outdoor activities (mainly hiking), and I love working out at the gym. Karyssa enjoys hiking as well, but she also loves curling up on the couch with a good book.
Could you share your engagement story?
I had known I wanted to propose to Karyssa for a long time. I planned a trip to Zion National Park in Utah for a few days and decided to propose there. I organized a beautiful hike and asked Karyssa to turn around, facing the mountains, so I could take a picture. When she turned back around, I was on one knee. At first, she thought I was joking. Our intimate moment was cut short as our dog got into a fight right after the proposal.
Where was your wedding? Why did you choose this venue?
Our wedding took place in Lindon, UT, about 45 minutes south of SLC. People often inquire about why we chose Utah as our wedding location, and there are a couple of reasons behind it. First of all, we got engaged in Utah while on a travel assignment, so it holds a special place in our hearts. Secondly, have you been to Utah? It’s genuinely the most stunning state. The mountains tower over the city in the most surreal way. Additionally, we decided on Utah because we hired our wedding planner from there, which streamlined the planning process. Our venue, the Wild Oak, felt right as soon as we saw it. It boasts beautiful mountain views and is in town but has a secluded feel. It allowed us to have the wedding and reception in the same place, which we loved. The staff is friendly, welcoming, and made us feel at home.
What was the concept behind your wedding and how did you find your inspiration?
The concept behind our wedding was an elevated garden party. We wanted to be surrounded by color, and we shared a Pinterest board link with our guests for inspiration on the desired "dress code." We wanted plenty of florals, and Jess, our wedding planner, made that a reality. The florals were easily the highlight of the planning process. Jess did an outstanding job delivering exactly what we envisioned with the florals.
How long did it take to plan your wedding? Did you encounter any challenges during the planning process?
We got engaged in November 2021 and married in April 2023, so the planning process took about that long. The main challenge was that we were travel nursing throughout our engagement and weren't physically in Utah to meet our wedding planner, Jess. Fortunately, we were able to coordinate everything through calls.
How many guests did you have? What was the seating arrangement at the wedding like?
We had a relatively small wedding with around 75 guests in total. As for seating arrangements, there really wasn't a formal one. We wanted our guests to feel like they were part of a big family celebration rather than a formal event.
Tell us about your outfits. How many different styles did you try?
For myself, I found my ceremony dress at Grace Loves Lace. I tried on about five dresses, but the first one I tried on was the one I chose. I aimed for a sleek, sexy, sophisticated, and timeless look. We also had an outfit change. For my second outfit, I wore a two-piece suit with a crop tank under the blazer jacket. This look was a bit edgier and sexier since it was for the evening. Karyssa found her dress at a&be in Portland. She also wanted a timeless piece with unique sleeves. She made the bold choice to chop off her train, and she has no regrets about it. Her second outfit was a strapless Jenny Yoo midi dress with embroidered pearl-studded gloves and pearls in her hair. These outfit changes set the tone for the reception, and we had a blast dancing in them.
What was your first dance song? Did you choreograph or improvise?
Our first dance song was “Looking at me like that” by Vance Joy. We chose to improvise our dance.
What was the most memorable moment from your wedding day?
For me, the most memorable moment was seeing Karyssa walk down the aisle. Witnessing her happiness and excitement to officially become my wife was truly special. Being surrounded by our loved ones, who could share in our joy, meant the world to me. For Karyssa, exchanging tearful vows in front of those closest to us was the most memorable moment. After three years of travel, having everyone gather to witness the love we've grown was unbeatable. The energy throughout the entire evening was something we'll never forget.
Are there any vendors you'd like to highlight?
Absolutely, we had some incredible vendors who truly made our day:
- Photographer: Summer Grace – She's a true professional and captured our day beautifully.
- Wedding Planner and Florals: Jess Dewitt – She brought our vision to life and made our day stunning.
- Penguin Bros – Their ice cream sandwiches were a hit and received many compliments.
- The Cluck Truck – A food truck serving chicken strips since we opted for a less formal dinner. People loved it.
- Janelle Ingram – She did our makeup and made us feel gorgeous.
- Maggie Langdon – She specialized in Hollywood curls, which Karyssa wore. Highly recommended!
How did you manage anxiety before the wedding?
I kept reminding myself that, at the end of the day, I would be marrying my person. Regardless of the stress or anxiety, I knew that being married to Karyssa was the best outcome. This thought always calmed me down when I felt stressed or anxious.
What advice would you give to couples currently planning their wedding?
My advice to other couples is not to get too stressed and to enjoy the process. Being engaged to your partner is so much fun! Instead of stressing over the wedding, enjoy the engagement. Everything will fall into place as it's meant to be. Another piece of advice is to consider getting a wedding planner or at least a day-of coordinator. Weddings involve many moving parts, and having professional help will save you stress on the big day so you can truly enjoy it.