I don’t get to shoot in Oxford often, so it is a special treat when I get to work at home. I am so glad it was with these two and the amazing team of vendors they chose! Allison and Winn’s love for each other is so apparent, which made my job easy and gave me room to get creative with their portraits. This was such a perfect weekend and I am so thankful to have been asked to play a role in it.
Allison and Winn, we wish you a lifetime of happiness! Thank you for trusting us to capture your day.
“We chose to have our rehearsal dinner at Jinsei because it has played such a vital role in our lives and love story. Without Jinsei, there would be no us! I was very skeptical about using Jinsei as a wedding venue because it had never been done before. My vision for the wedding was girly and traditional, and Jinsei does not fit in that description. After several meetings with Ann Marie at Details Rentals and David Naron at Oxford Floral, we came up with a plan to tie in my wedding vision with the Jinsei look and feel. We chose clear and silver tableware with tablecloths that match the beautiful mural in the restaurant. We used all white flowers in vases of various widths and heights with splashes of orchids to tie in the modern, Japanese feel Jinsei brings. Elizabeth Heiskell catering worked with the Jinsei Head Chef, Taichi Omori, to come up with a dinner menu that would please all palates and incorporate the incredible sushi and fresh cold dishes Taichi is known for preparing. Our lead bartender and mixologist, Maddie Shell created two amazing cocktails for us: the Hamiltini and the Who Dat Sazerac. The Hamiltini was a lavender infused gin martini named after Hamilton the musical to honor my love for musical theatre and to acknowledge that Winn first told me he loved me after we saw Hamilton together while on a trip to Chicago. The Who Dat Sazerac was a take on a traditional Sazerac with charred pineapple. The name was chosen due to Winn’s love of the New Orleans Saints and many late nights spent at the Sazerac Bar in The Roosevelt in New Orleans. Following the rehearsal dinner, we celebrated Winn’s birthday with a post toast! We invited all of Winn’s friends to join us for drinks and birthday cake. The night took a surprise turn when the entire party turned the Jinsei lounge into a dance floor, but I guess that’s what happens when Dent May DJs! When Dent played Dolly Parton’s ‘9 to 5’ the whole party erupted and we all had no choice but to dance. Our rehearsal dinner and post toast exceeded both mine and Winn’s expectations. It was an incredible start to the weekend!” – Allison
“Winn and I met while working together. I was a server and hostess in Winn’s restaurant, Jinsei, during my last two years at Ole Miss. The Jinsei staff is like a family. Everyone has an incredible bond and spends a lot of time with each other outside of work. While Winn and I had spent time together outside of work in a group setting, we did not go on our first date until almost a year after I started working for him.” – Allison
“The story of our first date is one of my favorites to tell! After a long shift at Jinsei, the staff went out for drinks to City Grocery. Winn later joined us and sat in the empty seat next to me at the bar upon his arrival. We found ourselves deep in conversation for what felt like five minutes when we heard the dreaded words, ‘Last call!’ Winn decided to invite the staff over to his new house for a nightcap. Our conversations continued until we looked up and saw the sun rising. We never ran out of things to talk about; I had never felt more myself than I did while talking with him. It was that early morning when Winn asked me on our first date. ‘Can I cook you dinner tomorrow night?’ he asked, ‘I make the best spaghetti!’ I joined him for dinner the next night and we’ve been inseparable ever since. That was August of 2018.” – Allison
“Winn wanted to make sure the proposal was a surprise with a goal to catch me completely off guard. After attending my best friend Mary Shields’ art show in Tupelo one afternoon, I pulled into my driveway just as I always do, without a thought. As I opened the door, I was greeted with a beautiful, orange flower arrangement (orange is my favorite color), a bottle of Dom Perignon, and Dent May’s ‘Love Song 2009’ playing in the background. Winn, dressed up, turned the corner in my kitchen and began telling me that he wanted to spend the rest of our lives together. He got down on one knee and proposed to me with the ring that we had picked out together many months prior. Tears streaming down my face, it was the easiest ‘yes’ I’ve ever given. Later that night both of our families and Mary Shields came over to celebrate. As it turns out, they were all in on the plan for weeks! We continued the celebration that night with dinner at Ravine and finished our night with drinks at, of course- Jinsei. The day was perfect and exactly how Winn intended it to be. It was one of the greatest surprises of my life!” – Allison
“We were both pleasantly surprised at how relaxed and stress free we were on the day of our wedding. I credit that to our incredible vendors, who just handled everything beautifully. Our preacher, Rev. Don Gann gave us hopeful advice in our last pre-marriage discussion, ‘Believe it or not, you will actually enjoy yourself that day! It’s a fun day!’ He was exactly right. Having a small wedding party gave us plenty of time the day of to get ready and take our time. Having two women in my bridal party allowed us to start the getting ready process later in the day and we were all able to enjoy lunch together with my mom; something that doesn’t happen often on a wedding day. Winn was able to invite his friends that he doesn’t get to see enough to his suite at the Graduate for lunch. It was just a fun morning for everyone all around! I also want to add that the weather really worked out for us! While there was a thunderstorm during our ceremony, (I’m talking a loud crack of thunder seconds before I walked down the aisle) it somehow stopped just in time for our family and friends to walk over to the Lyric. The rain the day before made for a very lush and green backdrop for our first look and family photos and thankfully, the sun managed to shine through our entire photography session.” – Allison
“Like most girls, I have dreamed of my wedding day for as long as I can remember. I have memories of daydreaming with my mom about what that day would look like. My dreams for my wedding really took root after waking up in the early morning hours to watch the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate Middleton. My sister and I even had fake, replica rings to match Kate Middleton’s. I just know my friends and family reading this are laughing out loud because that morning watching the royal wedding was the start of what would become a royal wedding obsession for me. While my wedding day didn’t end up looking like, or even coming close to their wedding, I did end up walking down the aisle to the same song Kate Middleton did: ‘I Was Glad,’ by Sir Charles Parry.” – Allison
“My advice for other brides is this- do not look left and right! It is so easy to compare your day and the choices you’ve made to what other brides do. Your wedding day is just that: YOURS! The day should reflect the personalities of you and your groom and no two couples are quite the same. Every couple’s story is unique and beautiful to them and if your choices feel right to you, then they are perfect. Don’t get so wrapped up in the trivial details that you lose sight of what the day is really about- celebrating your love for one another with the people that love and support you most!” – Allison
“The words I used the most when it came to our wedding design were: timeless and traditional. I wanted our wedding to have a clean and crisp look to it and follow all of the proper etiquette and wedding traditions. The colors I chose were white and pale pink, or blush. I did not want anything to look over the top, but rather be just enough for the space we were in. I wanted to be able to look back on my photos in 50 years and have no regrets. I feel like that goal was achieved!” – Allison
“Our wedding day was special in so many ways! The number one thing that made our day so special was having the opportunity to share it with our daughter, Ava. Ava has been our greatest blessing and joy and is a direct reflection of mine and Winn’s love for one another. We were able to include her in the ceremony as a flower girl and share our first dance with her. Dancing to Ella Fitzgerald’s version of ‘Over The Rainbow’ with the two people I love most was a moment I will cherish forever. Having all of our family and friends in one place, together was also extremely special to us. After a year of no gatherings, we have all learned not to take these times for granted! Our guests traveled far and wide to make it to our big day and made many sacrifices to get there for us! Each invitation sent was extremely special and meaningful to us. We carefully chose our guest list based on the support and love we’ve received. We are so grateful for our friends and family that made the trip to celebrate with us!” – Allison
“We started our own traditions in our wedding that I am really excited to continue in my family! My favorite of those new traditions were the use of our sterling silver wine goblets. My grandmother and I searched high and low in various antique and silver shops across the south to find the perfect set of sterling silver goblets to use on our wedding day. After an extensive search, we found an antique set of Wallace goblets in a silver shop in New Orleans. My grandmother gifted the goblets to us and we drank from them our entire wedding night. We plan to gift our own children silver goblets one day for their wedding nights and grow our collection into a family set for special occasions.” – Allison
“Our wedding vendors were INCREDIBLE! I don’t have just one favorite! David Naron and the Oxford Floral team did an amazing job bringing my vision to life. I left every floral meeting with David feeling excited and confident about our plans. My bouquet was a dream and matched the photos I showed them for inspiration to a T. Ann Marie Shivers and the Details crew were my rocks! Ann Marie was the first vendor I visited with, before we even had a set date. She made it her goal to help me have the wedding of my dreams within a reasonable budget and one that would be unique to us. With several friends getting married this summer and using Details as well, I worried our days would all look similar. Ann Marie made sure we all had something different and beautiful! It goes without saying that our food was incredible because we worked with Elizabeth Heiskell. We talked with her twice and trusted her from there. Anything and everything she serves is delicious! Elizabeth, Sarah Virden, and their catering staff were a joy to have in Jinsei for our rehearsal dinner, working alongside our Head Chef, Taichi Omori. Elizabeth Heiskell catering is welcome in the Jinsei kitchen anytime! I also have to brag on my longtime friend, Abby Wilson Rooks. I reached out to her last winter about heading up the music for our wedding ceremony. In several phone calls and texts throughout the planning period, Abby pieced together 4 vocalists, an organist, and a pianist to perform during our wedding. The musicians performed ‘This is the Day’ by John Rutter during the family procession, a dream I have had for many years. Abby and Brady Bramlett sang ‘The Lord Bless You and Keep You’ after we said our vows and the whole congregation had chills. Abby is an incredible singer and friend. I cannot thank her enough! I also want to thank Lindsay and the Lyric staff for being so wonderful to us and Kara Giles with Nest Paper Studio for creating the most beautiful invitations, programs, menus, and more! I could take up this entire blog bragging about our vendors. They truly all delivered their best for us! I put a lot of trust in the vendors we chose and let them take creative liberties because I knew upon booking, they were some of the best in Oxford. I am so glad I did!” – Allison
Lead Photographer: Ann-Marie Wyatt | Second Shooter: Lindsay Pace | Dress Designer: Allison Webb | Dress Store: Elle James Bridal | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bella Bridesmaids | Tux: Landry’s | Bride’s Cake: Alice Chow | Groom’s Cake: Sweet T’s Bakery | Rehearsal Dinner Venue: Jinsei | Ceremony Venue: First Baptist Church Oxford | Reception Venue: The Lyric | Coordinator: Katie Naron | Flowers: Oxford Floral | Invitations: Nest Paper Studio | Rentals: Details Rentals | Band: Party Beatz | Caterer: Elizabeth Heiskell Catering | Hair: Southern Chic Salon | Makeup: Makeup by Mary Shields | Post Toast DJ: Dent May | Post Toast His and Her Cocktail Art: Anna Swatzell Design | Getaway Golf Cart: Zerk Wilson Golf Carts | Bridal Shoes: Badgley Mischka | His and Her Cocktails: Maddie Shell | Flower Girl Dresses: Pieces by Tam