What are your day jobs?
Max is Vice President of the Multi-Family Division (that’s fancy speak for apartments) at Stream Realty. I started a new job in October at AMS Commercial Real Estate to manage the company’s investment portfolio. We’re both in the same-ish business, so it’s nice to be able to talk about our jobs with each other and have a better understanding of what the other does all day!How did you meet?
We both went to the University of Texas, but because Max was a senior when I was a freshman, there wasn’t any overlap in friend groups or circles, so we never knew each other. There was an attempt to set us up in December of 2013 by a mutual friend, but luckily God postponed that life event until Max mustered up the courage to ask me out October 2014. He reached out on my birthday of that year (knowing full well that it was my birthday!) and we had our first date on Oct. 16 – drinks at Whisler’s, which turned into dinner at Licha’s Cantina, and we’ve been together ever since!
Tell me about the proposal?
We made plans to fly to Chicago for the University of Texas vs. Notre Dame football game over Labor Day weekend. Once at the stadium for the game, we met up with my parents and their friends who are big time Notre Dame alumni, and we joined their tour of the Notre Dame locker room as something fun to do and see before the game. We were on the tour and I was just snapping pics and taking it all in, not even thinking twice about the fact that a photographer was with our “tour group” snapping away. We were led through the tunnel where the players enter the field, and Max asked the photographer if we could run onto the field to get a quick photo, and the photographer pretended to think hard for a minute but then said “sure sure, but we have to hurry. Only 5 minutes.” So Max and the photographer took off, I was lagging behind, taking selfies and again, being oblivious almost to the point of un-cooperative. Once we got to the 50 yard line, we stood in front of the photog and posed and smiled like normal while he took our picture, then all of a sudden Max started to turn toward me and I was laughing, crying, walking backwards, crouching down next to him, standing up, all over the place! I was a mess, but so excited and surprised! After Max said a ton of sweet things that I can hardly remember (whoops!) I said YES! And my parents and our family friends came running toward us (the photog captured it all — so sweet!) and then we celebrated back at a tailgate where a ton of my friends surprised me. We spent the rest of the weekend in Chicago – eating delicious food at fun dinners, taking in a cubs game, and basking in the happiness of the engagement!
How did you choose your venues: Central Christain Church and the Four Seasons
Central Christian is a gorgeous church. We loved the stained glass, plus the downtown location can’t be beaten. The big ballrooms of the Four Seasons were a perfect match for our needs and how we envisioned the reception to look and feel. I’ve said it many times and I truly believe that no one does it like the Four Seasons! Their level of service and the experience that you get upon setting foot inside the gorgeous hotel is unmatched. Plus, we were one of the first weddings in the newly-renovated Four Seasons ballroom and that was pretty neat and exciting!
Describe your decor and how you chose it?
We wanted to transform the Four Seasons ballroom into a colorful, high-energy environment. Design elements included a bronze mirrored dance floor framed by a custom-built stage facade + backdrop for our fabulous band, gold lounge furniture surrounding the dancing area, floral-topped banquettes and lots of bars. Tables were dressed with textured metallic linens, sleek gold Chameleon chairs, and bold florals. The head table featured a 24’ garland of cascading lush florals. It was truly stunning!
Tell me about the “Pretzel/Beer Room”
We wanted to do a fun surprise for Max but I ended up getting too excited about it to keep it a secret and explained the idea to him a couple months out and of course, he loved the idea! Since Max’s German roots are deep on both his mother’s and father’s sides, we thought it would be fun to have a “Beer Garden” in the San Jacinto Ballroom – a room decorated like an upscale German biergarten. We had a “chef action station” with smoke roasted german sausages: Elgin sausage and Bratwurst, as well as large ballpark, salted soft pretzels with mustard and hot cheeses, and a hanging candied bacon station, which was a huge hit of the night. The candied bacon was such a crowd pleaser that my dad got numerous texts the morning after that said, “your daughter was a gorgeous bride and all, but that bacon, WOW!” That really made me laugh.
Tell me about your attire – who designed your dress and where did you buy it?
Carolina Herrera designed it and I purchased it directly from her Highland Park boutique in Dallas. I did all of my fittings there and they were wonderful to work with. The fitted bodice of the dress was embellished with a Chantilly lace over an ivory silk corset and the fitted mikado silk mermaid skirt was accentuated by a dramatic train of origami folds. I wore a cathedral length veil that was trimmed in matching Chantilly lace. I loved my dress and veil so much!
What shoes did you choose and what jewelry did you wear?
My “something borrowed” was a pair of diamond and pearl drop earrings from my Godmother. Aside from the dress, my “something new” was a diamond tennis bracelet, a gift from my mother. Her “something old” was a lace handkerchief that she carried down the aisle wrapped around her bouquet, which belonged to her maternal grandmother who could not be at the ceremony in person. Her “something blue” was a beautifully scripted “L” embroidered inside the dress, a special touch Carolina Herrera does for her brides. I also wore a Swarovski crystal and rhinestone hair comb to add some pop to my dark updo. It was a fun accessory!
(I added more info about other details in lieu of my shoes 🙂 )
Who designed the bridesmaids dresses and how did you choose them?
My bridesmaids wore silk crinkle chiffon Amsale dresses in Fawn, purchased from Bella Bridesmaid in Austin. I knew I wanted long dresses because our wedding was on the dressier side. Since our color palette was so colorful, I wanted the bridesmaid dresses to be a simple, neutral hue that would really let the shades of their bouquets pop!
And your groom – tell me about his look – who was his suit designer? Any other significant accessories?
Max wore a midnight blue custom tux – he wanted to do something different than a basic black tux and I’m so glad he did. His favorite detail in the tux was “Hook ’em Horns – 8.6.16” which was embroidered under the flap of his collar. His black dress shoes were gorgeous, made of alligator. He looked so handsome and felt like a million bucks in his new threads!
Why did you choose me, Jenny, to be your wedding photographer?
First of all, you came highly recommended by our wedding planner, Becky Brock! But after our initial consultation, my mom and I felt like we totally hit it off with you and connected. You made me feel so comfortable and excited — choosing you was one of the easiest decisions I made. You made every step so enjoyable and stress-free. I wish we could do it all again, starting with the bridal portraits!! It was all just so much fun.
What was one of your favorite moments from your wedding day?
The moment with my dad right before the doors opened, and then the feeling I had walking down the aisle looking at Max is one I’ll never forget. All of the anticipation, planning, and excitement leads up to that specific moment in time – it’s so surreal, emotional and absolutely amazing. Many other moments are a blur, but I’ll always remember those specific minutes of our wedding day. Tied for “favorite moment” is most definitely the surprise fireworks show devised behind the scenes by my sweet mama and Becky Brock for our exit. We were just at the end of the sparkler line about to hug my parents goodbye when BOOM – the biggest fireworks show that we’d ever seen started lighting up the sky! We were absolutely floored, I was so overwhelmed that I was brought to tears, and couldn’t believe it was all for us. (Major props to @bigdogpyro too!). To this day I still cannot believe that my mom and Becky were able to keep such a big secret from me – what a duo. Our send-off was truly the icing on the cake! And not to mention the fabulous snapshots that you captured…it was absolutely magical!
What was your favorite image from your wedding day?
How can I choose!? I love the black and white aerial shots from the church as my dad was walking me down the aisle. I also love the photo of him kissing my cheek before he sat down and Max’s sweet expression in the background. And I love every single image in the sparkler exit and of course, the firework photos!
Did any of your other vendors go above and beyond for you?
Aside from you going way above and beyond beyond….Becky Brock and her girls were incredible to work with. They completely took the wheel and Olivia Pope’d the heck out of it all. I felt so “handled” and as a bride to be, it’s the best feeling to have! Keith from Westbank totally hit it out of the park. Daniel Estrada from When It Clicks is an absolute magician behind the camera – his footage, your photos, and our dog are the three things we’d grab if our house was burning down! All of our vendors were a dream to work with and there isn’t one thing I’d change.
Do you have any tips to share with other couples?
If you’re a control-freak like me, relinquish that control to your vendors! This is a wonderfully special time in your life where you can sit back and put your heels up, because hey, you’re the bride! I trusted mine so much and as a result, not only did I made some special new friendships (which made the 11-month planning process even more fun), but my new friends orchestrated the best day of our lives to date. And that’s pretty special.
Another tip: choose to do a bridal portrait session! It’s the best trial run for the big day. You want to love your hair and makeup on your wedding day, so be sure to get a couple test runs in. Plus, you’ll be able to get more comfortable being “bridal” in front of a camera + most importantly, you’ll develop an even better relationship with your photographer.
Wedding Planner and Event Designer: Becky Brock – Brock and Co.
Ceremony Venue: Central Christian Church
Reception Venue: The Four Seasons Hotel
Florist: Westbank Flower Market
Cake: Simon Lee
Band/DJ: Big Blast & The Party Masters
Catering: Four Seasons, Meredith Hill
Hair Stylist: Corrine Kimbro
Makeup Artist: Donna Bruns
Videographer: When It Clicks