An Industrial, Romantic Wedding in Dallas, Texas
When Chenin and Ross met at a mutual friend's engagement party in October 2015, they realized their paths had crossed before: "We found out that we actually had a lot of mutual friends and had been to several of the same events," says the couple. "The timing was just never right." After two years of dating, the timing was right for another milestone, as Ross proposed on a visit to the Dallas Arboretum and then surprised Chenin with an engagement party that included her out-of-town family and grandparents. "The day was truly a special and unforgettable surprise," says Chenin.
As the couple began researching wedding venues in Dallas, Texas, the Brake and Clutch Warehouse immediately stood out. "When we went to the venue, we learned that it had been an old service shop that was converted into a wedding venue. Ross has a passion for cars and I thought that was a really cool connection," says Chenin. "It was exactly the look that we were going for and was in the heart of Dallas, which is where we really wanted our out-of-town guests to experience."
With help from Birds of a Feather Events, Chenin and Ross created a "whimsical garden" inside the industrial space, adding lush flowers in shades of plum, lilac, and pink that stood out against dusty blue bridesmaids' gowns and table linens. A dramatic overhead arrangement in the reception space complemented the exposed materials at the venue, while the couple's DJ kept the dance floor packed. "Our top priorities were to serve good food and have a full dance floor and spend the night celebrating with our closest friends and family," says Chenin. "I really wanted it to be a romantic wedding but also a fun wedding that treated our guests to an evening to remember."
Welcome to the Garden
Invitations from Minted set the tone for the wedding's garden theme with delicate greenery accents throughout the suite. The couple incorporated the same design onto their day-of paper goods—even ordering their menus with enough blank space at the top to have each hand-calligraphed to match the invitations' addresses.
Lovely in Lace
Chenin had her heart set on a lace wedding dress, but that didn't make her search any easier—until she spied a Martina Liana fit-and-flare gown with a sweetheart neckline and illusion back, that is. "I pretty much tried on every dress there was to try on at several different bridal shops," she says. "When I tried this one on, I loved it and I couldn't stop thinking about it after I left. I always knew that I wanted a lace dress, and this one had the most beautiful and intricate lace that I had seen!"
She customized the design by adding scalloped lace along the bust, extending the satin under the train, and requesting a slightly fuller petticoat. "My dad gave me a pearl bracelet as a gift on my wedding day which was the perfect accessory," she says. "I wore Betsey Johnson lace heels with blue bottoms for my something blue, and I kept it pretty simple otherwise because my dress was so intricate."
Her First Impression
In addition to sharing a first look with her father, Chenin also stepped into the room for a first look with her bridesmaids, grandmothers, and aunts. "I had kept my dress a secret from everyone," she says, "so it was so fun to see the look on their face when they finally saw what I had picked!"
An asymmetrical, garden-style bouquet from Max Owens Design included peonies, garden roses, butterfly ranunculus, sweet pea, clematis, and frittalaria. Understated shades of blush, lavender, and cream received a dose of drama from deep plum accents.
Chenin asked her bridesmaids to wear matte chiffon dresses in three different necklines—V-neck, spaghetti strap, and strapless—in Bella Bridesmaids' Silverstone shade. "I loved that they looked cohesive but all had their individual style and I wanted them to be affordable for the girls as I knew they were spending a lot of time and money on the wedding," she says.
Their First Look
Chenin and Ross met for their first look at a nearby park, where lush, emerald-colored landscaping added to the garden atmosphere. "The first look was a big decision for me, and it was difficult to decide if I wanted to do it or not, but ultimately, we agreed that we did," she says. "I was pretty nervous before, but when we did it, I felt more relaxed and relieved that we saw each other, and I also loosened up a bit which helped for the rest of the day. It was nice to see him and be able to spend time together from then on."
In the Navy
Ross picked out a navy blue suit and vest from The Black Tux, and wore a striped tie that matched the ones worn by his and Chenin's fathers and grandfathers; his groomsmen also wore navy blue suits, and matched their dark ties to each other's. "I just wanted a cohesive and sophisticated, yet casual look," says Chenin.
Chenin and Ross softened the industrial atmosphere of their venue's former life as an auto service shop by bringing in bountiful florals. An asymmetrical broken arch and arrangements lining the aisle mimicked a naturally-growing indoor garden.
Saying "I Do"
A representative from Love Notes Weddings officiated the couple's ceremony, which included several elements unique to Chenin and Ross. "We worked with the officiant to put together the whole ceremony with readings that resonated with us and also stories to make it feel very personal," says the couple.
After exchanging vows, the newlyweds recessed to an instrumental version of "Billion" by Mat Kearney. "We kept our ceremony on the shorter end so that we could get to dinner and dancing, which is exactly what we wanted!" says Chenin.
While guests moved on to the cocktail hour, Chenin and Ross posed for post-ceremony portraits. "We finished photos a little early so we were pleased to be able to join the cocktail hour for a little bit!" says the couple.
In honor of Ross's love for cars—and the venue's history—the couple created a valet stand-inspired escort display, where keys and tassel keychains directed guests to their tables and a sign read, "Find a Place to Park It."
Up in the Air
A grand hanging floral arrangement over the dance floor made the most of the warehouse's high ceilings. Chenin and Ross chose both long and round tables for seating, garnishing the long head table with a full-length garland of flowers and greenery.
Eat, Drink, and Be Merry
Gray chargers and pale blue napkins set off the bright pink-and-purple blooms in the centerpiece arrangement on the head table. Custom menus detailed the meal from CN Catering, which included grilled romaine salad, Provencal chicken, strip steak, and vegan ratatouille. "The food was very important to us and we wanted light and delicious options to accommodate all diet preferences," says Chenin.
Centers of Attention
The other farm tables in the space were dressed with dusty blue runners and adorned with candles, bud vases, and low bowls holding miniature arrangements.
Round tables in the reception space were covered with pale blue linens accented by dusty blue napkins. Tall arrangements on gold stands softened the venue's exposed beams and piping.
Understated blue ribbon and loose greenery decorated the couple's five-tier cake from Sugar Bee Sweets, which included three flavors: white chocolate raspberry, almond, and lemon blueberry.
Dance All Night
After opening the dance floor as husband and wife, Chenin and Ross asked DJ Jason Esquire to play "I Loved Her First" for the bride's dance with her father and "You're Nobody 'Til Somebody Loves You" for Ross and his mother. "The second we were done with speeches, our dance floor flooded, and it never emptied," says Chenin. "That was our number one wish, so we were so thrilled with that."
Photography, Charla Storey
Venue, Brake and Clutch Warehouse
Wedding Planning and Event Design, Birds of a Feather Events
Catering, CN Catering
Flowers, Max Owens Design
Videography, Marc Roberts Videography
Officiant, Love Notes
Calligraphy, Ragan Hope Calligraphy
Cake, Sugar Bee Sweets
Music, DJ Jason Esquire
Rentals, La Tavola Fine Linen Rentals; Top Tier
Bride's Gown, Martina Lliana
Bride's Accessories, Pronovias veil; Betsey Johnson shoes
Hair and Makeup, Beauty and the Blush
Bridesmaids' Dresses, Bella Bridesmaids
Groom's and Groomsmen's attire, The Black Tux
Rings, Lapidary Arts
- This Couple Reunited with Their Loved Ones During Their Family-Focused Wedding in Florida
- Love and Joy Were at the Forefront During This Intimate, Family-Focused Celebration in Occidental, California
- A Slice of Princess Diana and Prince Charles' Wedding Cake Is Up for Auction 40 Years Later—It Might Sell for $700
- Five Reasons Why You Should Talk to Your Friends About Wedding-Related Stress