Kristy & Sean
Words by Kristy + Photography by Ashley Wilkerson
Sean and I met in a pediatric clinic in Iowa, where I worked as a nurse and Sean was completing his residency. He always found time to make me smile in short conversation, but nothing serious came of it. We parted ways, but Sean never forgot “the girl he met in clinic.” A few years later, Sean found me “by accident” on social media. What started as a friendly chat turned into a realization that our connection was something special.
Sean asked me to a Luke Bryan concert at the county fair shortly after we reconnected; I finally accepted his date request. It was magical, and something that I’ll never forget. We dated long distance for nearly a year, enjoying many adventures together. I realized that no matter what we did, I was always happy if Sean was by my side. We learned that our polar-opposite tastes for food and fun made life exciting, while our shared core values grounded our relationship.
In June 2015, Sean flew to Iowa with my sisters to surprise me with a beautiful, storybook proposal. What I thought was going to be dinner with a friend turned out to be one of the most memorable evenings of my life. I arrived at an empty winery in the country, but soon found my two sisters in dresses and curls. They led me down a path covered in flower petals, illuminated by candles, and bathed in the sounds of our favorite songs to the man of my dreams. His proposal was heartfelt and endearing. Amidst a stream of tears, I said, “Yes.”
Sean, an avid hunter and outdoorsman, grew up in Wyoming, while I grew up in a small, rural farm town in Iowa. Despite these differences, we both wanted to host our wedding in a beautiful, scenic location. Sean has a lifelong love and passion for the Tetons, which he shared with me on a trip to Jackson Hole soon after we got engaged. To say the least, I was in complete awe of the mountains’ rugged beauty. We quickly decided the valley was the perfect location for our destination wedding celebration.
After looking at several potential reception venues, we chose Jackson Hole Mountain Resort’s Rendezvous Lodge. We wanted our guests to have a unique and memorable experience riding the gondola to our reception at more than 9,000 feet above sea level.
I spent a lot of time arranging personal touches, including painting dozens of votive candle holders; ordering custom cups for the gondola ride; framing wedding-day pictures of our parents, grandparents, and great grandparents; and working closely with a Manhattan-based invitation company to customize a monogram that symbolized us, both as individuals and as a couple.
Because we chose to have a very elegant, traditional Catholic ceremony, I thought it best to wear a modest gown. I was fortunate enough to have a perfectly matched custom bolero made to go over my gown during the ceremony. I worked directly with Nancy Barrus, from Salt Lake City, who is hands down the most amazing seamstress I have ever met. The addition of this delicate lace bolero was my favorite part of the dress.
We were so happy and grateful to be able to spend time with our guests prior to our wedding day. We celebrated Sean’s thirty-fifth birthday at Dornan’s on Thursday, and enjoyed a scenic float trip through Grand Teton National Park, followed by our rehearsal dinner at Jackson Hole Golf & Tennis Club on Friday.
In a word, our reception was ethereal. Ian Whipple of Floral Art literally transformed our venue to a ballroom fit for royalty. From chandeliers and custom draping to gemstones and aspen trees, along with the most beautiful array of fresh lilies and hydrangeas, he created a wedding our guests will never forget. With a whole day of perfect weather and incredible photography, the entire experience felt like a fairytale, and was truly the grand wedding of our dreams.
16 July 2016
Our Lady of the Mountains Catholic Church
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort, Rendezvous Lodge
Fr. Justin Waltz and Fr. Joshua Waltz
Holly Richter, Tru Salon
Ashley Wilkerson Photography
Special Events Jackson Hole
caterer & dessert
Jackson Hole Mountain Resort
A Black Car Service
Nancy Barrus, Avenia Bridal
Ceci New York