Sensual and luxurious wedding at the Bell Tower in Houston, Texas has a gorgeous red and gold color story, a stunning embellished dress, and elegant decor.
Ashley and Derick Sumpter’s romance begins with love and basketball.
In 2010, they were both recruited to play for the women’s and men’s McMurry University basketball teams and soon crossed paths. The pair began bonding during long bus rides to away-games, over meals shared in the cafeteria, and while working out together in the gym. While they debate the exact details of “how they met,” one thing’s certain — they’ve been inseparable ever since!
Eight years later, Derick planned a surprise proposal during a romantic getaway trip to the Maldives. On New Year’s Eve, their hotel threw a massive celebration with food flown in from all over the world, live music, and fireworks. Nearing midnight, Derick suggested they walk to the smaller island where they could enjoy the fireworks away from the crowd. Once the fireworks began, Ashley turned to look over at Derick and found him down on one knee! He asked her to marry him and of course, she said yes!
After rescheduling their wedding three times and dealing with the inevitable challenges of planning during COVID-19, Ashley and Derick finally said “I Do” on January 18, 2021! They tied-the-knot in a beautiful ceremony at the Belltower on 34th Street in Houston, Texas, surrounded by 100 of their closest friends and family. Despite the difficulties they faced, they couldn’t imagine a more perfect day!
- Couple: Ashley & Derick Sumpter Jr
- Occupations: Ashley is a Test Manager: Department of Homeland Security; Derick is an Operations Specialist in the United States Coast Guard
- Wedding date: January 18, 2021
- Wedding location: Houston, Texas – The Bell Tower on 34th
- Bridesmaids and groomsmen gifts: Groomsmen were given Black and Gold monogrammed cufflinks. Bridesmaids received custom robes and jewelry.
- Gifts for one another: Ashley gave Derick Christian Louboutin Alpha Male Flat shoes. Derick gave Ashley an exact replica of the wedding ring her grandfather gave her grandmother.
- Ceremony entrance song: “Wu Tang Forever” – Drake
- First dance song: “Die with you” – Beyonce
How they met…
There’s always more than one side to a story and this Sumpter story has two. In 2010, Ashley and Derick were both recruited to play basketball for the women’s and men’s McMurry University basketball teams in Abilene, Texas.
If you ask Derick how they met, he will tell you that he found Ashley sitting all by herself in the cafeteria for lunch and dinner every day and figured she was lonely. Him being the gentleman he is, thought he should give her some company and started sitting with her every single day. Soon after, the two started working out together, going swimming, and spending more quality time together.
If you ask Ashley how they met, she will tell you that the two started getting to know each other on the long bus rides to the out-of-town basketball games. Derick would sit in the seat right across from her and they would talk throughout each trip. Soon after that, Derick started joining Ashley in the cafeteria, not because she was lonely but because he had an eye for her! Either way, the two have been inseparable ever since and 10 years later they’re ready to take the next step in their relationship and say “I Do” to forever!
Derick and Ashley decided they wanted to finally use all of their hotel points and wanted to choose a beautiful, tropical place to stay where they probably couldn’t afford to stay in if they had to pay out of pocket. They chose to use their points to stay at the Conrad Maldives Rangali Island. On December 28th, 2018 they arrived in the Maldives, one of the most beautiful places they had ever been! The room they stayed in was on the main island with a gorgeous view right from their back porch. They went on an exclusive day cruise where they went snorkeling and fishing and the crew cooked the fish they caught right out of the water! They enjoyed a delicious dinner at the Ithaa Underwater Sea Restaurant and had an amazing couple’s massage at the hotel’s over-water spa.
On New Year’s Eve, the hotel threw a huge New Year’s party with food flown in from all over the world and live music performers. When they finished eating, Derick mentioned it would be a great idea to walk over to the smaller island where they could watch the fireworks set to go off at midnight and get away from the large crowd. They walked over to the smaller island and sat in some of the beach chairs to wait for the fireworks. When midnight approached, they both stood up and the fireworks started going off right on cue. Ashley turned her head to look at Derick and he was down on one knee! Derick proceeded to ask Ashley to marry him and of course, she said yes!
The first look…
Mr. & Mrs….
Their wedding style was luxurious, sensual, and elevated.
Ashley herself wore a stunning Stephen Yearick dress from Weddings by Debbie. And both she and Derick wore Christian Louboutin shoes.
Couple photo session…
Wedding advice for other engaged couples…
Their advice for other engaged couples would be to enjoy the journey.
Ashley says, “Planning a wedding can be stressful, especially during a time like this when COVID can have a major impact on a lot of your decisions. So do what you can to make the process as enjoyable as possible.”
She also encourages couples to continue getting to know each other and enjoy time together.
“Continue to go on date nights, do the things that make you happy, and do stress relieving activities,” she say. “Lean on each during the tough times or when tough decisions need to be made. But ultimately, enjoy each other and the journey to your special day.”
Looking for more sensual & luxurious wedding inspiration?
- Designer/Planner: Darryl Moore – D’Concierge Weddings
- Photography: Stanlo Photography
- Venue: The Belltower on 34th Street
- Cake: Cakes by Gina
- Dress: Stephen Yearick from Weddings by Debbie
- Shoes: Christian Louboutin
- Makeup: Olivia Song
- Floral: Floraventi
- Rentals: What’s the Occasions
- Dance Floor: Mike’s Dance Floor
- Lighting: LG Entertainment
- DJ: DJ 4.0
- Tuxedo: Brian Alexander Bespoke
- Hair: Unbleavablehair
- Custom Bouquet: Aurora Aksesore
- Headpiece: Elenas Bridal
- Photo Booth: Exclusive 360 Photo