Real Wedding: Catherine and Mike at Foundation for the Carolinas

Top: Not a girl who’d always dreamed about her big day, Catherine tried on everything at Nitsa’s, from skinny mermaid to ballgown before the attendant took charge and brought out a sweetheart A-line dress with beaded bodice, rose sash and cathedral length train. The bride says, “It looked so beautiful and felt great on. It was perfect!” Mike sported a custom suit by Abbeydale, while his groomsmen went with plain black from Jos A. Banks. Bottom: The reception took place at The Foundation For the Carolinas overlooking the beautiful Charlotte skyline.

JUNE 28, 2014
Covenant Presbyterian, Foundation For the Carolinas
Photographs by Caroline Ro

Catherine Ambler, IT consultant for Ernst & Young, and Mike Allen, investment analyst for BDCA, met during grad school at Wake Forest, where they were both studying at the same library, or she was anyway. Mike knew she studied in a particular room and started sitting nearby, gradually moving on to Starbucks breaks and finally asking her out.

With Scripture read by friends and Catherine’s brother’s a capella version of “Divine Romance” by Phil Wickham, Father Bob Henderson gave a short homily based on letters they had written to each other. Catherine said, “I felt really calm, and I’m the more emotional of the two of us. At the end of the aisle, I got a little giggly, and saw Mike was tearing up, and I was like WHAT? It was the complete opposite of normal!”

Great with spreadsheets, the bride and groom happily handed the creative details over to Favor Me Events’ Anne Markey, who created a spectrum of corals and pinks to compliment the turquoise bridesmaid gowns and specialty linens by Party Reflections. Lush centerpieces in blush and coral by The Place for Flowers took Catherine’s breath away. A favorite moment, DJ Dennis from Split Second Sound had guests arm in arm, belting out final song, Billy Joel’s “Piano Man,” before they took up clappers, bells, and noisemakers to send the newlyweds away in a 1930 Model A Ford and a St. Thomas honeymoon.

Anne Markey of Favor Me Events

The Place For Flowers

La-Tea-Da’s Catering

Wow Factor Cakes

Paper Source

Pink Toast

Split Second Sound
Live music during cocktail hour: The New Hires

Bridesmaids’ hair + Mom’s: Amanda Bagford

Nitsa’s SouthPark

Bill Levkoff, New York Bride & Groom


Jos. A Bank

Wow Factor Cakes matched the bride’s sash and lace bodice on the sumptuous cake, marble with chocolate mousse and almond cake with strawberry filling.

Doughn’t Mind If I Do: favor boxes of Krispy Kremes, a reminder of the couple’s first date.

Tiny ribboned bells to herald the newlyweds’ exit.

Although flowers were not at the top of her list, The Place for Flowers took the bride’s breath away with lush centerpieces of mounded hydrangeas, dahlias, roses, peonies and stock with floating candles, glass pedestals and mercury glass candles.

The bridesmaids chose from three different Bill & Levkoff styles from NY Bride & Groom in the bride’s turquoise accent color. The bridal party carried heavy bouquets of hydrangea, coral peonies, pink ranunculus, garden roses, and fresh green succulents.

Categories: Real Weddings