Just one glance of his future bride, Tameka Satchell, and Willie Love knew he had found love; he knew he had found the one he would spend the rest of his life with. Call it love at first sight or a case of a name affecting destinies (his name is "Love" after all), on September 25, 2010 at the Holiday Inn Charlotte Center City, Tameka and Willie pledged everlasting love to each other. Many thanks to the amazing husband and wife photography team at Pixels on Paper for these breathtaking images.
On their first encounter...
"Our first encounter was on UNC Charlotte’s campus in 1996. I was walking from the C-store with a couple of bags in my hands. As I’m walking back towards my dorm, I see a few guys walking towards me. One of them, Willie, asks me if he could carry my bags for me. I said “no” and kept walking! Willie told me a year later when we officially met, that he told his friends that I was going to be his wife one day! We began dating in April 1997 after being officially introduced at a basketball game; I didn’t even remember that it was him until he told me about that day!!!" - Tameka
Well, Tameka might not have remembered Willie then, but she'll definitely remember him for the rest of her life :). Not only was his proposal wonderfully unique, he will be the man by her side forever!
On the proposal...
"We got engaged on June 9, 2009! It was totally out of the ordinary and unexpected! Willie told me that we were going to the movies at the new Imax theatre at Discovery Place, but we were only going to stay for about 30 minutes....Well, while we were waiting for the movie to start, a couple asked us to take their picture. They said it was their 25th wedding anniversary! So, Willie took their picture, and they sat down beside us and started talking. The movie started to let in and we sat down. The previews started and then the screen went black...I thought the movie was getting ready to start...as I'm looking at the movie screen, a picture of me and Willie comes up! It said "I love you Tameka Satchell, Will you marry me?" I gasped and then I turned to look at Willie and he was down on one knee with the ring!!! I was soooo shocked, that all I could get out was "Today?" The people in the movie theater clapped and congratulated us!!! One lady even took our picture right then! (Yes we did stay to see the movie, Star Trek!) After the movie that couple came over and hugged us and said congratulations!! They wished us well and hoped that we would be married for 25 years just like them! I guess I know where we're going on our 25th wedding anniversary!" -Tameka
On the most important aspect of the wedding...
“I wanted our wedding day to be memorable and a joyous celebration of our love. I especially wanted to let everyone know the strength and endurance of our love from 1997, even though we broke up in college and had been apart for over 3 years! I focused a lot on small details about our relationship in the wedding ceremony, including putting a poem that Willie wrote to me when we first started dating in college in 1997 on our wedding program! We even had a picture tree with our childhood pictures, pictures from college of us, and then from when we rekindled our relationship in 2005!" -Tameka
“The reception is what mattered most to me...our family and friends like to have a good time...when our venue wedding package offered an “open bar,” I was sold!” -Willie
On the theme and inspiration for the ceremony and reception...
"Since my new last name was going to be “Love,” we decided to incorporate that in to our theme! I had my invitations vendor create our own personal “Love” monogram, since we couldn’t use the “Love” logo that is in downtown Philadelphia. It was so perfect, that we took it and ran with it! It was sent to our Lighting vendor for our Gobo Light, then to our Photobooth vendor to use on the pictures that our guests would take home. I used it on our favors for our “Love is sweet” Candy Bar! I made stickers with the monogram and stuck on our “Chinese takeout boxes” candy favor bags. For our reception table names, I used the cities/places of “Love” or romantic places of the world for names. For example: Venice and I also put on the table name how to say “Love” in that city’s language! I am very detail oriented and wanted to make the experience very different and not just your average wedding day! Since we were having a Fall wedding, I didn’t want the typical orange & brown colors. I found the color combination of eggplant, cornflower, and magenta and I was in love!" -Tameka
On the aspect of the wedding planning they disagreed on most....
"Willie and I didn’t really disagree on different elements of the wedding. He really let me do my thing and I would take my ideas back to him and he’d say, “Babe I love it!” However, we did disagree on how much time I spent on planning our wedding! I would tell him that planning a wedding is a full-time job! I was very into it, including making a wedding notebook with pictures, deposit receipts, vendor contracts, wedding dress pictures, and our wedding colors including page protectors and tabs! I wanted to be very organized and appear very prepared when I went to meet vendors; explaining my theme and wedding vision was very detailed and long! We did eventually compromise by me only doing “wedding work” during the day, and after 5 o’clock, putting it down and spending quality time with my fiancé! He would say, “It’s not that I don’t want you to plan our wedding, I just want to spend time with you without always hearing about it!” I think it was wedding overload for Willie!" -Tameka
On finding wedding vendors....
"Once we picked our venue, Holiday Inn, they provided us with a Preferred Vendor List. Especially since we hadn’t chosen some key players for our wedding day. I first started an internet/Google search trying to find someone to help channel my wedding vision ideas in the right direction. I had a lot of ideas for the day, but didn’t know how to bring it all together. With the Holiday Inn wedding day package, we received a Wedding Coordinator that would be there for the whole day and keep us on schedule for the ceremony and reception. So I focused on finding a wedding designer. I found Carla Eustache of Style Perfect Weddings & Events, doing a Google search for wedding planners/designers in the Charlotte area. She was a God send! She helped bring my wedding vision to life and had great ideas on where to put certain “must haves” in our day! And she had a lot of fabulous ideas of her own! Our photographers, Misty & Ryan Case of Pixels on Paper, were the most important vendor of the day! We have now become friends since being their clients! I chose them solely on their unique name from the Preferred Vendor List, and went to their website and I was blown away! Once I met them, I knew we had to have them for our wedding day! With our wedding budget soon becoming an issue and I still hadn’t purchased my wedding dress, I opted to find the same dress online. I went to several boutiques in Charlotte, but I just couldn’t see myself paying thousands of dollars for my wedding dress and only getting to wear it for one day. That part of the wedding was definitely negotiable to me! I found my dress at OnceWed, and searched the designer and found someone selling my size. I talked to the sender and received pictures; she even offered to let me come to her house to come try it on since we happened to be in neighboring states! I purchased my dress for $900 and it was perfect!!! I did have alterations done at one of the bridal boutiques that I just fell in love with, Hayden Olivia. They were awesome to me!!!" -Tameka
On advice for future brides and engaged couples...
“We’d just like to say that think about the things that are most important to you for your day. Do a few things and do them well! People will remember them and won’t even realize that anything’s missing! Brides, take time to enjoy being engaged before you start setting dates and wedding planning. It all happens in a moment and you can’t get that moment back! Just take time to enjoy the moment! Most importantly, all you really need is the preacher and your groom and everything else is just a luxury!!!" -Tameka
Tameka and Willie, we hope you hold on to each other and love each other deeply for the rest of your lives. Special thanks to Misty and Ryan of Pixels on Paper, not only great photographers but wonderful people. Be sure to check out their blog as well.
BRIDAL GOWN:Hayden Olivia Bridal
SHOES: Martinez Valero
FORMAL WEAR: Men’s Wearhouse
VENUE/CATERER: Holiday Inn Charlotte Center City
EVENT DESIGNER/DÉCOR: Carla Eustache, Style Perfect Weddings & Events
FLORIST: Party Blooms
CAKE: Iris Austin, Austin’s Cake Bakery
BRIDESMAIDS' GOWNS: Bella Bridesmaid; Coren Moore
PHOTOGRAPHER: Misty & Ryan Case, Pixels on Paper
VIDEOGRAPHER: Amanda Pagano, Isabel’s Corner
LIGHTING/GOBO LIGHT: Uptown Event Productions
RENTALS: Classic Party Rentals for Lounge, Table Chargers & Chivari Chairs
HAIR: Autumn Isbell
MAKE UP: Nicole Florence (M.A.C. makeup artist, friend of Bridesmaid)
REGISTRIES: Target Club Wedd, Crate & Barrel, Pottery Barn
TRANSPORTATION: Platinum Limousines
REHEARSAL DINNER: Maggiano’s Little Italy
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