Allie and Michael’s Fearrington Wedding
College sweethearts Allie and Michael scaled down their Fearrington wedding and will hold their reception with friends and family later.
How did you and your partner meet?
Michael and I met as undergrads at UNC. Only my second day on campus, I was hesitant to go to a party hosted by some sophomores. I’m so glad my roommates convinced me to go because it is where I met Michael, as well as his friend, David, who ended up being our officiant. A few days later, we had our first date at Ram’s Head Dining Hall and the rest is history!
Tell us about the engagement.
After about eight years of dating, we planned a trip to Nashville to get away for a weekend. Though we had talked a lot about getting married, I didn’t think we would get engaged for at least another year. We both have a deep love for food, so we planned our trip mainly around restaurants we wanted to try. We saved the restaurant we were most excited about (Husk) for the last night of our trip. He even tried dropping hints by saying things like, “This is going to be a memorable dinner.” However as a foodie, that comment did not spark any suspicion. After our main course and before dessert, Michael handed me the sweetest handwritten letter about the history of our relationship and wanting to spend the rest of our lives together. When I was done reading it, he pulled out a beautiful family heirloom ring and asked me to marry him.
What made Fearrington the place for you to say “I do?”
Initially, Michael and I were drawn to the idyllic setting–we toured Fearrington on a beautiful day in May and immediately fell in love with the grounds. We also knew the food to be world-class, having eaten in the dining room on a few prior occasions. However, it was meeting Gilda for the first time that confirmed our decision. Since Michael and I are both extremely busy with school and work, it was a huge draw to work with a wedding planner with such a high level of expertise. In fact, we only met in person a couple of times and Gilda took care of the rest!
Describe the highlight moment of your wedding day.
Seeing each other for the first time as I walked down the aisle. We decided not to do a first look and I think it made the ceremony that much more special for both of us. We also had an impromptu private first dance on the barn patio which is something neither of us will ever forget.
What was the biggest surprise of the day?
All week leading up to the wedding, I had been obsessively checking the weather forecast. Since the first time Michael and I visited Fearrington, we knew that we wanted to get married under the pecan tree. However, when it started raining an hour before the ceremony and our ceremony site had to be changed, I was surprised by how little it bothered me. We were both just so happy to be getting married to each other that the rain didn’t matter. It also helped that Gilda came up with a beautiful backup rain plan in the Garden Terrace. It couldn’t have been more perfect!
My parents also surprised us with the most talented father-daughter music duo following the ceremony. It added such a nice touch to hear beautiful renditions of some of our favorite songs performed live throughout the evening.
What was your biggest surprise about wedding planning?
The biggest surprise was definitely learning in March that there was a pandemic that could potentially affect the year of planning we had already put in. We postponed our ceremony once in the hope that things would return to normal. When it became clear that wasn’t going to happen on our timeline, we decided to move forward with a drastically scaled back ceremony with only a fraction of the number of guests we had originally planned to invite. Although we missed many of our family and friends dearly, it made for a much more intimate experience which was quite special in its own way. And, we are planning a reception at Fearrington with everyone next summer!
Anything you want to add about your wedding story?
Everyone always says your wedding day won’t go as planned- and I think our wedding was the perfect (and extreme) example of that. At times, it seemed as though the world was conspiring against us, but regardless of all of the changes we had to make, neither one of us regrets the way things turned out. At the end of the day, we both got exactly what we wanted–each other!