Melanie Mauer has shared another of her gorgeous Kentucky weddings with us today. With countless hours of planning, a good hard look at who they are and what their passions are ~ along with the help of their dedicated wedding vendors … Anne and Frank enjoyed a day truly meant to honor their love and enthusiasm for life! As you will read in a very moving story about themselves, Anne swears she couldn’t have done it without the wedding professionals that helped her orchestrate their sensational Kentucky celebration!!

from Anne … “Sophisticated & classic. Love it. It was really fun to plan, and I tried to infuse as much of our personalities into it as possible. Wish we could throw a party like this every year!”

from the fabulous Melanie Mauer
A classic, sophisticated aura surrounded this whole day. Anne’s style is impeccably matched by her ability to compose elements of color, style and mood. They wanted a day they could share all of their love with their closest family and friends and likewise put so much love into every detail present that day.

Here’s what Anne had to say about planning the day …

My vision for the wedding was one of effortless elegance. Frank wanted a traditional wedding and while I, too, wanted something classic, I also wanted it to feel and look fresh yet timeless. Something we could look back on years from now without it feeling dated. I wanted every detail to be beautiful & well thought out but never having a contrived look or feel. Above all, we wanted our family and friends to enjoy the day with us celebrating our long-awaited decision to finally tie the knot – beautiful surroundings, great food, great music. Most important, we wanted everyone to have fun.

One challenge was coming up with a way to explain what I was envisioning in my mind to our wedding planner and chosen vendors, all of whom were a complete dream to work with. I finally settled on ‘town & country,’ which fit us perfectly. ‘Town’ reflected our vision for beautiful, elegant details, and ‘country’ reflected our vision for a relaxed, enjoyable atmosphere of easy celebration. Also, Frank and I both grew up in the South and consider it home so we knew we wanted a wedding infused with Southern charm and hospitality. Frank grew up in Kentucky, I grew up in Louisiana, and we have shared a love of thoroughbred racing for years. The Kentucky Derby’s red rose as our flower was a no-brainer. Our color choices of champagne and ivory were also sentimental – inspired by fond memories of our visits to the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion in Los Angeles where Frank and I have enjoyed several performances over the years. It was Frank who expressed his love for the ivory marble and gold accents of that grand hall and asked if we could work that into the wedding somehow. And after looking at a number of venues, we knew we’d found the one when we saw Spindletop Hall. It just felt right. Its gorgeous grounds, the architecture, the attention to detail in the house that was lovingly designed by its first mistress – everything about it was the perfect backdrop for bringing our vision to reality.

Frank and I met in San Diego in the late summer of 1995 when I was on holiday with friends, and Frank was still in the Navy. We didn’t start seeing each other regularly until the next year, but we’ve been fairly inseparable ever since. What I love most about Frank is his easy way about things. He doesn’t know a stranger, and his kindness and general good-natured outlook is a good foil to my type-A personality. Not to mention he’s so handsome, & those eyes! As for me, well, Frank has often said he fell in love with me immediately because I was the perfect combination of smart & beautiful & “class.” Now, I don’t know about all that, but I do know that I wanted to make our wedding all of those things. Admittedly, it became my obsession for a number of months to plan a celebration that respectfully honored the traditional and faithfully reflected both our personalities and what we love most about one another.

When the week of the wedding finally arrived, I have to say I didn’t feel ready as far as the preparations went. In fact, I was still writing our ceremony the night before but managed to finish in time to join our guests at the pool party Frank’s parents graciously hosted for us. It was all moving way too fast. Frank and I whispered together long into the evening and promised to take lots of mental snapshots the next day so we could remember the best moments. When the big day finally arrived, all my nerves were gone. I know that’s because I had the best wedding planner and vendors in the world, and we really were ready. I remember feeling so happy and letting go of all of the angst about how things would turn out. Frank & I had decided to see each other before the ceremony to take our pictures, and I’m so glad we did. The instant I saw his face and he saw mine, we knew everything up to that point had been worth it and the day was going to be perfect. From then on, we completely relaxed and savored every moment surrounded by those dearest to us.

What I liked most about my wedding day was how effortless it truly was! Mackenzie Spalding is a dream. I sometimes think I would’ve gone insane if it hadn’t been for her grounded, patient and sage advice in the weeks and months leadings up to it. Our wedding simply would not have happened without her help.

My favorite memories from the day are many but here are a few: Frank’s face when he turned & saw me for the first time, the impossibly green grass of the Spindletop lawn, my best girls in all their finery, the first time I saw the dining room set for dinner – the flowers, the linens, the cake! – and the lawn set for the ceremony with the aisle markers, the chairs, the rose petals – all of it like it had been plucked from my mind, seeing Frank’s face as I turned up the aisle with the string quartet playing “All I Want is You” by U2 in the background, my goof in kissing Frank ‘hello’ when I got to the top of the steps before the ceremony even started, the smart-looking bugler who called everyone in for dinner, our guests singing to the music playing during dinner & later giving the chef an ovation when he came out to check on us, dancing with Frank for the first time as his wife & so many more!

What I’d really want to pass along to any bride and groom planning a wedding is to make it a reflection of their own personalities. That’s not an easy or quick thing to do. Don’t rush it. It takes time and introspection. But it’s worth the effort. Also, to make a conscious decision to take those mental snapshots throughout the day (& whole weekend, really). After all of the thought and hard work that goes into pulling a party of that magnitude together, it all goes by in a blink! What I loved most about our day is that it really was a reflection of us and a true celebration of our love – for each other and for our family and friends. It was perfect.

Planner: One Fine Day Wedding Consultation / Florist: Best of Flowers / Caterer, Reception, Ceremony: Spindletop Hall / Cake: Martine’s Pastries / Transportation: Gold Shield Cars / Shoes: Christian Louboutin / Photography: Melanie Mauer

Photography by Melanie Mauer is a member of our Little Black Book. Find out how members are chosen by visiting our FAQ page.
Photography by Melanie Mauer

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