Real Richmond Wedding | Amanda + Christian at Dover Hall

Amanda & Christian
May 25, 2019

How They Met
Amanda and Christian first met in August 2011 at The College of William and Mary in their freshman dorm, Barrett Hall. Christian played football and Amanda played lacrosse, and since the student-athlete community was pretty small, they met their first night of college. Barrett Hall has a tradition where the second-floor men bring roses to the first and third-floor girls. And by fate, some of Christian’s friends had Amanda’s room and the two ended up spending time together. By October, the two were official.

The Proposal
Amanda and Christian were engaged in November 2017 at Amanda’s parent’s house in Richmond. Christian surprised Amanda at work on a Friday afternoon, and when she arrived at her parent’s house, it was decorated with rose petals and candles throughout. Since Amanda has lived at that house her entire life, it was an extremely special location. Christian got down on one knee and proposed as Lee Bryce’s “I Don’t Dance” played in the background. But the surprises weren’t over. After the intimate proposal, they drove downtown where Christian had planned a proposal surprise party with all of their family and friends. Amanda explains, “We celebrated all night with champagne and our loved ones. It was truly a perfect proposal.”

The Details
When looking for their wedding venue, it was really important to these two that they had an indoor and outdoor space, and not just a traditional ballroom. With a guest list of 240, they also wanted enough space for their guests, and Dover Hall fit the bill. Amanda says, “We were immediately drawn to Dover Hall for the unique architecture and dramatic, yet open ballroom.”

It was also imperative that they got married in a church and with St. Mary’s Episcopal Church right around the corner, it was perfect.

Amanda’s pastor from her childhood church in Richmond helped officiate the ceremony. The two shared a kiss at the end of the aisle, one of their favorite memories from the day.

For their elegant reception at Dover Hall they didn’t have a specific theme, but rather, they wanted a timeless and classic wedding aesthetic. They kept their colors neutral with pops of light blue accented throughout. Chef Lee at Dover Hall pulled out all the stops for their food, with a robust cocktail hour with creole crab cakes, lobster rolls, and more. And for dinner, they had local vegetables, a pasta station, a butcher’s table with beef and brined pork, and southern-inspired dishes like shrimp and grits.

Dover Hall brought in a tent to utilize some outdoor space. Bistro lights hung from the tent, giving that space a sense of romance on their May night.

Favorite Part of the Day
Amanda says, “Our first look was both of our favorite moments of the day. [It] was such an intimate moment and calmed all our nerves. [It] will forever be such a clear memory of the day!

Biggest Challenge
When looking at their biggest challenge, Amanda and Christian would have to say the length of their engagement. “18 months is a long engagement so there were seasons of decision fatigue. However, we can confidently say it was worth every second planning and every decision made.”

Best Piece of Advice
“Enjoy every single second, it truly goes by so fast! One tip, right after your engagement at the beginning of planning, align on your top three priorities with your fiancé and stick to them. Often your budget will reflect those priorities and it helps scope the focus of the areas you deeply care about and the other areas you can spend less time/energy on. For example, our top 3 were 1) Married in a church, 2) Reception venue with indoor/outdoor space and 3) Ensuring our day was well captured (photo/video)…Another piece of advice is to focus on the guest experience but never sacrificing the bride and groom’s vision. Spending time and energy on details and flow for your guests is so important, but not as important as the couple feeling the day reflects them first and foremost!”

*All information in our Featured Weddings is provided by the couple. Richmond Weddings™ is not responsible for discovering and adding vendors who were not on the submission form completed by the couple.* All photos courtesy of Katelyn James Photography.

Further Credits

RW Vendors: Catering/Rentals (2): Dover Hall

Additional Vendors: Engagement & Wedding Photography: Katelyn James Photography | Rehearsal Dinner: Sam Miller’s | Videography: The Herrintons | Wedding Day-Of Coordinator: Hannah Marie Events | Ceremony Site: St. Mary’s Episcopal Church | Officiants: The Reverend David H. May, The Reverend Phillip Faig | Ceremony Music: Jordan Garrett (vocalist), Ryan Tibbetts (organist) | Gown Designer/Salon/Alterations/Veil: Modern Trousseau | Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaid Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids Richmond | Accessories: Adriana Orsini Earrings | Hair/Makeup: Rachel Shrader & Lacretia Baskfield, Elle Style Studio | Jeweler: Karats of Pittsburgh | Groomsmen Attire: The Black Tux | Stationery/Paper Goods/Calligraphy: Meadows Made | Printing Company: Worth Higgins | Ceremony Florals: White House Floral Designs | Reception Florist: Photosynthesis Floral Design | Lighting: Leap Light + Sound | DJ: Affirmative Groove, Sam Hill Entertainment | Cakes/Sweets: Pearls Bake Shoppe | Transportation (2): Platinum Tours | Guest Accommodations: Courtyard Richmond Downtown | Travel Agent Accent On Travel | Honeymoon Location: Curtain Bluff Antigua | Custom Mirror & Timeline: Paints by Dash, Allison Dash | Custom Wedding Map: For the Love Co., Etsy