Blooming Brilliant

WRITER CREDIT: 
PHOTOGRAPHER CREDIT: 
Blooming Brilliant | Love jawdropping flowers? This outdoor wedding at the colonial plantation Middleton Place in Charleston will blow you away
Any rom-com fans out there? You’re in luck, as Neil Mammele and Mallory Pultz’s path to the altar is filled with enough fodder to fill a script and then some. For starters, here’s how they met: The Madison, Connecticut-born pair were in their small hometown one Thanksgiving. The night before the holiday, explains Mallory, is like a high school reunion with former classmates out on the town. There are only so many bars there, she says, and as fate would have it, she hit the same watering hole as Neil. In the slickest of moves, he told her to find him when she wanted a drink. Soon after, he says, she tapped him on the shoulder and said, “I’m thirsty.”
 
“Once I saw her looking at me, I knew I was in trouble,” Neil says now. That night of great conversation quickly evolved into a long-distance romance with the couple flying back and forth each month from Mallory’s digs in Charleston to Neil’s in Connecticut. Eventually, he moved here permanently and we score our next fabulous scene …
 
Neil was set to go to Greenville, South Carolina, for a boys weekend while Mallory stayed behind with her girlfriend who’d come into town for a visit. “We spent the morning at a spin class, drinking mimosas at brunch, and wandering the charming streets South of Broad,” says Mallory. “My friend wanted to walk along The Battery as she had not been back since college, so we walked down the dirt path lined with the gorgeous oaks at White Point Garden, just admiring everything.” For his part, Neil had not left town and instead headed to a pal’s where he watched Netflix and hung by the pool in an effort to hide out as his plan fell into place. Just before the set rendezvous time (arranged between Mallory’s buddy and Neil), he was sitting on the steps of the park’s bandstand, ring at the ready.
 
“A group of girls saw me sitting there while my friends Jake and Nick took photos,” says Neil, recounting the tale in detail. Amid squeals, they asked if he was about to propose; when he said, ‘Yes,’ they descended into OMGs right and left. “We enlisted them to help out by keeping the area clear on cue,” he says. “We had our own security!”
 
About that time, Mallory walked up, without recognizing the guy sitting there smiling at her (in her defense, he was supposed to be out of town). In an instant, she had clued in and says she then spazzed in her own right. Later they headed to Stars Rooftop Bar to celebrate—including Mallory’s parents, whom Neil had flown in.
 
Their wedding proper was for the books, as well. Middleton Place was a fit as soon as they stepped on the property, says Mallory. And since flowers were a “big deal” to them, they hired Fern Studio and A Charleston Bride to fill the grounds with arrangements that spanned the property. With the bride’s mother, a green thumb and veteran employee of nurseries, cheering everyone on, the couple let their designers go wild with color. Dahlias, peonies, ranunculus, garden roses, gomphrena, lisianthus, delphinium, and pomegranates populated arrangements at the ceremony in the Octagonal Gardens, cocktail hour by the Butterfly Lakes, and reception on the Greensward. Vintage brass quail pecked their way across tablescapes awash in rich fall hues. The effect? Blooming brilliant. Almost as brilliant as the couple’s own tale. 
 
Vendors
 
Design: A Charleston Bride, www.Acharlestonbride.com
Images: Anne Rhett Photography, www.annerhettphotography.com
Venue, catering, bar service: Middleton Place, www.middletonplace.org
Florals: Fern Studio Design (flowers), www.fern-studio.com
Rentals: Snyder Event Rentals, www.snyderevents.com (furniture); Ooh Events, www.oohevents.com (tabletop, décor); Skyline Tents (tent), www.skylinetentcompany.com
Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen, www.latavolalinen.com; BBJ, www.bbjlinen.com 
Baker: Ashley Brown Cake Design, www.abcdcakes.com
Stationery, signage, paper goods: Prairie and Sage, www.prarieandsage.com 
Music: Charleston Virtuosi, www.charlestonvirtuosi.com (cocktail, ceremony); Steel Toe Stiletto, www.partywithsts.com (reception)
Bride’s attire: Anne Barge from White on Daniel Island, www.whiteondi.com (gown); Nina from MODELBRIDE, www.modelbride.com (shoes); Meg Ann Workman (dresser)  www.megworkman.com; Nayda D Studio Design & Alterations (alterations)
Bridesmaid’s attire: Morilee from Geneology Boutique’s annual pop-up shop in Charleston, www.geneologydresses.com
Beauty: Meg Workman, www.megworkman.com 
Groom’s attire: Gieves & Hawkes (tux) from Jean’s Bridal www.jeansbridalcharleston.com; Steven Madden (shoes), www.stevenmadden.com; Brackish (bow tie) www.brackishbowties.com
Groomsmen’s attire: Generation Tuxedo, www.generationtux.com
Welcome bags: A Signature Welcome, www.asignaturewelcome.com
Transportation: Charleston Style Limo, www.charlestonstylelimo.com
Videography: Life in Rewind, www.lifeinrewind.com