Both Fanecia and Alex were recent college graduates when they first met at a fraternity and sorority showcase. Fanecia remembers the night well, “We literally laughed and talked all that night.” It wasn’t too long after their first date that Fanecia realized they would spend their lives together.
A Charlotte native, Alex was in the first semester of his MBA studies in Kansas when he started planning his proposal to Fanecia. He knew he would soon be heading to China to continue his MBA, and wanted to show her “he was in it for the long haul.” He realized his birthday in January, when family and friends were already planning to be together, would be the perfect time to pop the question. Under the ruse of getting everyone onto the rooftop of Fahrenheit hotel for a group photo, Fanecia was surprised to see rose petals parting the way between family and friends, all leading to Alex proposing.
They didn’t set their wedding date until a year and a half after their proposal. “We gave ourselves plenty of time to plan the wedding. This helped to take away the stress of planning a wedding,” shares Fanecia.
While in China, Alex had the pleasure of attending a traditional Chinese wedding. “The rituals I witnessed were so heartwarming and very meaningful. I was especially moved by the traditional tea ceremony. This ceremony was where the bride served tea to her new family and for the first time called them Mom and Dad, and the groom did the same for her family. I knew immediately I wanted to incorporate this into our wedding.” They also had a wall painted with the Chinese symbol for love.
All the women at the wedding wore white, setting a very stylish and elegant vibe. That wasn’t the only high fashion trend, though. Their wedding and décor designer set up the seating for the ceremony runway style. Fanecia remembers, “One of the most surprising things was when we walked out into our ceremony room for the first time earlier in the day. When we walked in it was as if we were at a NYC Fashion Week show, and our mouths literally dropped.”
Fanecia encourages other brides-to-be to always shop around and read reviews. She requested multiple quotes from various vendors to check on pricing. But, “There are some things you don’t want to cut costs on. For us it was the décor, food and drinks.”
“I will always remember the emotions we both felt as I walked down the aisle. Prior to the wedding, Alex kept telling me he absolutely would not cry. But as the doors opened, I saw the tears start.” Alex reflects on the day, “I fondly remember the love and energy felt by everyone. The wedding was 18 months in the making, so the excitement was literally in every single person.”
This wedding perfectly blended traditions from halfway around the world with up-and-coming fashions for a truly unique experience.
The Couple: Fanecia Jones, financial advisor at Vanguard, and Alex Wiggan, CEO and founder of technology company
Number of Guests: 175
Venue: Villa De L’Amour
Colors: All white
First Dance Song: “So High” by John Legend
Special Touch: Incorporating a Chinese traditional tea ceremony Alex saw in his work travels in China.
Advice For Brides: “Take time to truly enjoy the planning process. Also, take everyone’s advice with a grain of salt. I tried to make sure that all of the decisions that were made about our day were decisions the two of us made together.”
Florist: Designs by Devereux
Caterer: Above & Beyond Catering
Hair: Beverly Ozoeneh
Makeup: Leslie McKoy
Wedding Dress Boutique: New York Bride & Groom
Bridesmaids’ Dresses: JJ’s House
Guys Suits/tuxes: Groom – Why Not Fashion & Groomsmen – The Black Tux
Photographer: Jodie Brim Photography
Cake: Sweet Meg’s
Officiant: Reginald Sellars
Rings: Diamond R Jewelry &
Bartenders: Above & Beyond Catering
Music: Black Legacy (DJ Wood)
Event Rentals: Fete by Design, Excite Rentals
StationEry: 3 Little Birds Inc.