April and Josef’s love can endure anything, even a pulled hamstring! The day that Josef proposed, he invited April to take a romantic walk on a popular pedestrian bridge in Nashville. The only problem was April pulled her hamstring muscle the week before. Although annoyed, she endured the walk and when Josef had to run back to the restaurant they just left to get his wallet, April became more irritated. However, when she sat on a bench to wait for him, she noticed a card next to her from Josef. When she looked up, Josef was on one knee. To make things even more incredible, the next day Josef threw a surprise engagement party for April, inviting 80 of their closest family and friends.
Their wedding had a contemporary “Hollywood Glam” theme complete with sparkling jewelry, shimmering bridesmaids dresses, the prettiest floral decor by Rhonda Patton, and an amazing venue. Gregory Byerline Photography was there to capture it all. Their glam wedding is also being featured on our partner website Ebony.com + more images in the full wedding gallery here.
- Bride: April Robinson- Mergers and Acquisitions Manager
- Groom: Josef Robinson- Corporate finance professional
- Date of Wedding: 05/26/2012
- Location: War Memorial Auditorium Nashville, Tennessee
How They Met/The Proposal
From the Bride: We met freshman year at Tennessee State University. Our friends say that sparks flew immediately, but we were just really good friends for 2 years. We tell each other that our souls chose for us and we couldn’t stay apart!
Josef proposed during Memorial Day weekend 2011 (exactly a year before the wedding) after a nice dinner with our best couple friends. As luck would have it, I had pulled my hamstring muscle in the gym the week of and was in no shape to take a stroll on the pedestrian bridge in downtown Nashville (one of our favorite places) after dinner. Walking with my friend and with an attitude, I agreed and became irate when my husband went back to get his wallet he had forgotten at the restaurant. My heart and fury melted after reading a card left on a decorated bench on the bridge. When I looked up, Josef was on bended knee in front of me. It was pure joy and adrenaline that allowed me to jump into his arms with my bad leg!
Although the proposal was magical, Josef really topped himself the very next day with a SURPRISE engagement party he planned for us with over 80 of our closest family and friends at a downtown art gallery. I couldn’t believe he had planned AND paid for it without me knowing. It was an incredible night complete with head to toe attire he sent to my apartment. I was so grateful for that moment. Watching my reaction on the video still makes me cry.
Description of Event
Our theme was contemporary Hollywood glam. We were going for a luxury look that resembled going to a fabulous Hollywood event. Our planner translated our vision perfectly! We wanted to use flowers sparingly, and only where they could be statement pieces.
Overall planning was fun (with the exception of the budget tipping the scale). I read a random article in a Men’s Magazine on how to keep your guy engaged during the planning process. The main advice was to pick one night of the week to talk about wedding planning so the guy is not overwhelmed or bored (or just terrified of his blossoming Bridezilla) and that’s what we did. Thursday nights over dinner was our standing meeting time and it worked perfectly. He actually was looking forward to talking, making decisions, and getting updates. Our personalities were ideal for this, as the details we left mostly to our wonderful planner.
We had our fair share of hiccups, but met them with our number one weapon in life — LAUGHTER (because I mean what else is there to do a month or so before the wedding and the beautiful outside portion of your venue is being used as the Occupy Nashville sit/ sleep in headquarters!)
My dress went with our theme. And shopping for it went with my life- drama free! I saw the dress in a magazine and immediately fell in love and didn’t want to look at anything else. I delayed going to try it on because I was nervous about not loving it as much in person as I did on the page. A 40% off sale spurred me into action. I scheduled an appointment and went alone on a very normal Saturday. I tried on that one dress and my love was confirmed. I purchased it immediately. The entire process took less than 30 minutes, and I was off to have lunch at one of my favorite restaurants! I added some blinged out accessories including a beautiful crystal belt I found online. I loved everything about my look!
Most Memorable Part of the Day
The entire ceremony. The violinist, the outside space, the long and dramatic aisle, the grandness of the panoramic view, and the emotion. I’m really close with my pastor from my hometown of Albany, GA. He was gracious enough to travel to officiate our wedding. Before marrying, Josef and I had been together for 9 years, so It meant the world to us both to have him there. It was beautiful. He told a story of the email I sent him requesting that he officiate the wedding and how beautiful and meaningful the words were describing our love. He later read it to a couple contemplating getting married and asked whether they felt that same way about each other and if not they should reconsider. I felt Josef clench my hands tighter in his as my pastor relived the story. We ponder on my pastor’s challenge to us expressed through the vows we exchanged sometimes when we’re having a disagreement. We will always remember the fullness of that day.
You Make Loving You So Easy
Groom…He loves my smile and my laugh. He says it comforts and relaxes him even in the midst of a world wind. Warm and genuine.
Bride…I love his selflessness. It has made me a gentler and kinder person. I’m humbled by his daily sacrifices and giving to family, friends and strangers. I love that I can be reminded of my love for him by hearing how he has impacted the lives of those around him.
View the full wedding gallery here.
- Photography: Gregory Byerline – gregorybyerline.com
- Florist – Rhonda Patton of Rhonda Patton Weddings – Rhondapattonweddings.com
- Wedding dress designer: Vera Wang White Collection
- Bridesmaids dresses: Aidan Mattox from Nordstrom
- Shoes: DSW
- Ceremony and reception venue: War Memorial Auditorium – wmarocks.com
- Make up: Tessa Shaw
- Hair: Tracy Wiggins of Design Interventions
- Videography: Josh Shaw of Modern Innovations – moderninnovationonline.com
- Wedding planner and event designer: Krystal Bonner of Phoenix Forrester Events – phoenixforresterevents.com
- Cake: FunCakes Rental, LLC – cakerental.com
- Stationery: Jaron Jackson
- Decor rentals: Liberty Party Rental – Libertypartyrental.com; and Visual Elements – veevents.com
- Catering and bar se rvice: Down South Delights – downsouthdelightscatering.com
- Rehearsal dinner: Arrington Vineyards – arringtonvineyards.com
- Entertainment (live band): Higher Ground
- Entertainment (DJ): DJ Crisis
Rhonda Patton is a member of The Coterie – Munaluchi’s Wedding Collective. Interested in learning more about The Coterie? Click here to learn how to apply.