Both students at Howard University, Amber and Marcus didn't actually meet on campus. The ambitious pair found each other while interning on Capitol Hill one summer. They started dating in 2006 until Amber graduated in 2008. But the distance put a strain on their relationship, leading to their separation. Two years later they'd reunite as grad students, Amber in Atlanta and Marcus in still in D.C., rekindling their friendship and eventually resurrecting their past love. This time committing to their long-distance relationship, they vowed to travel back and forth to see one another, a vow that would bring them to the ultimate vows.
Planned by Coterie member Faith of This Love Weddings, the couple's elegant purple wedding was housed in the Loews Minneapolis Hotel. Setting the tone for the plum themed celebration, guests received coordinated purple invitations. And like the stationery, vibrant shades of purple could be seen throughout the day. Cylindrical glass vases held floral arrangements composed of purple roses and hydrangeas. Candles softly lit up the space, giving the reception a romantic feel. Check out the beauty for yourself and read more of Amber and Marcus' love story.
Photos by Cadence and Eli Photography.
Bride: Amber English Coleman
Groom: Marcus Coleman
Wedding date: 07/18/2015
Wedding location: Minneapolis, MN - Loews Minneapolis Hotel
Favorite item on wedding menu - The French macarons on the dessert bar! The risotto with the main course was also pretty spectacular!
Bridesmaids/Groomsmen Gifts - The Bridesmaids received personalized stationery. The Groomsmen received engraved flasks. We also covered some of the day-of/prep costs for our wedding party, nearly everyone had to travel to Minnesota and we are very appreciative of that.
First dance song - "For the Love of You" - The Isley Brothers
Tell us all about the proposal!
In the fall of 2012, Marcus came to Atlanta to support a fundraiser I co-chaired. The fundraiser was on a Thursday, and he told me he would have to leave that Saturday. Though I was looking forward to the weekend together, it was okay because my boss told me we'd be working that day anyway (so I thought). Saturday came, and I sent Marcus off to the airport, while I left for the '"fundraiser" at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens. To my surprise, when I walked around the corner as my boss and I were "looking for the fundraiser," there was Marcus, down on one knee with a yellow rose and a sparkling ring. After getting over the shock and confusion–he was supposed to be on a plane–I enthusiastically said yes.
Describe your wedding dress. How was your shopping experience?
I wore a dress that was fitted at the top with layers of chiffon swirled at the bottom. I added a sparkly belt from Etsy. Shopping for a wedding dress was fun, my mom and Maid-of-Honor flew in just for the occasion! It also made me extremely happy that I was supporting a black-owned business, Cherry Blossom Bridal. With only a little guidance the consultant picked up on my style and found my dream dress!
How was culture incorporated in your wedding?
Marcus and I jumped the broom at the end of the ceremony. Marcus is originally from Arizona and has both African-American and Mexican roots, so we did a fun Mexican line dance during the reception; well, I tried to do it but nearly tripped on my dress! It was a lot of fun though.
What is your favorite memory of your wedding day?
My favorite memory from the day was doing a 'first look' with Marcus. It was so nice to have a private moment together before the day started moving very quickly. During the planning process, deciding on whether or not to do a first look was one of the most difficult decisions--I'm glad we chose it, it was a very special moment.
What advice would you give to our brides-to-be?
Take time to enjoy the engagement and establish your general priorities before planning anything. These priorities will guide your planning and make it easier to say no to things you may otherwise feel pressured to do. On that note, remember what the day is about, you two and your love--so do you. It's tempting to get caught up in what other people may want or what the blogs say you "should have." Don't take that too far! Speaking of the nuts and bolts of planning, seriously consider a wedding planner or coordinator. Finally, if family is adding to the guest list try doing a little division--split the overall count between the couple and each of the families. From there, piece it together. There will be overlap and it may take some time to get that down to the desired number. For us though, that approach was much smoother than when we looked at the count as a whole and asked for family input.
Planning & Design: Faith of This Love Weddings
Photographer: Cadence & Eli Photography
Wedding Dress Designer: Lis Simon
Wedding Dress Salon: Cherry Blossom Bridal
Tuxedos: Men's Wearhouse, Vera Wang White
Bridesmaids Dresses: David's Bridal, Vera Wang White
Shoes: Ivanka Trump, Nordstrom
Hair & Makeup: Melissa Taylor, The Beauty Lounge Minneapolis
Ceremony Location: New Salem Missionary Baptist Church
Reception Location: Loews Minneapolis Hotel
Floral Design: Sadie's Floral Couture & Event Styling
Cake & Dessert Bar: Cocoa & Fig
Stationery: Gretchen Berry Design Co.
Lighting: Instant Request
DJ: Adrian Perryman, Events by MV
Cocktail Hour Musician: Debbie Duncan
Rentals: Linen Effects
Specialty Linens: CV Linens
Violinist: Obiele Harper
Photo Booth: Studio Veil