Every marriage has a story, and the tale of Temple Tutwiler finding Allyson Thompson truly plucks at our heartstrings.

Fate threw its hand when both of them checked in the the UAB EatRight Optifast Program, to begin their journey of weight loss. The program is designed to build camaraderie with other participants by giving a much-needed boost for the long journey ahead.

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The photograph completely captures the happiness shared by Temple and Allyson on their wedding day.

From the minute Temple met Allyson, he knew she was special. Both had struggled with their weight for a long time, and both knew that they could, together, get healthier. One year after they met, Temple and Allison were engaged.

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In anticipation of the ceremony, the bride gazes down at the courtyard of Bottega

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Say ” yes” to the dress with the wedding date, April 5, 2014, prominently displayed.

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Allyson decided to have only one bridesmaid, and it was appropriately her best friend,

Allyson selected an elegant, sophisticated veil and dress and adorned her bouquet with brooches she and her mom selected. In keeping with her desire to have an intimate wedding, her best friend, Heather Sampley, was the sole bridesmaid. Temple selected his father and his namesake to be his best man.

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Allyson holds her bouquet adorned with sentimental brooches.

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A close view of the bouquet offers inspiration for future brides. Isn’t it lovely?

Their wedding was reflective of what they share in common– love of family and a mutual desire to have a small, intimate wedding. Since the groom’s father has had an office on the top floor of Bottega for years, it was the perfect choice for the wedding and the reception.

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The groom and his Dad watch as Allyson appears on the staircase of Bottega.

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Elegant and gorgeous, the bride descends down the stairs to the ceremony.

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Two Temples are better than one. It was fitting that Temple asked his father to serve as best man.

Only 100 guests, mostly family and friends, attended the celebration which was held at one of Birmingham’s most venerable establishments, Bottega.  The groom’s family has had a special relationship with Frank and Pardis Stitt for years, and so together with Allyson’s family, all joined in to create a memorable wedding for Temple and Allyson.

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Flowers adorn the entrance of Bottega. This lovely arrangement of roses, hydrangeas and other varieties is simply gorgeous.

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The front of Bottega was tented with festive lights for the reception.

The ceremony was short and sweet with Judge Alan King presiding over the marriage. Family and friends offered their special prayers and words of encouragement to the couple.

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The bride with her mother (on the right) and Temple’s mom on the left.

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Temple and Allyson with Temple’s sisters, Lucy and Elisabeth.

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Robert Moffett, a long time friend of the family, congratulates Temple.styleBlueprint__tutwiler--52

The critical details of the wedding were masterfully handled by Michael Dyer of Uncut Flowers. Not only did he design the gorgeous flowers, but he served as the consultant extraordinaire, assisting both families in ways to spend their money wisely. Michael’s creative and inventive touch can be found in every aspect of the wedding.

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Large arrangements of roses, hydrangeas and greenery were placed on each side of the entrance of the restaurant. The hint of red offers a subtle contrast to the soft, subdued color palette.

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The wedding took place on the staircase of the restaurant. This stunning garland was created by Michael Dyer of Uncut Flowers.

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Candles created an intimate setting inside the restaurant.

From the trio of college musicians from Samford University, to the bride’s bouquet studded with memorable broaches, Michael offered ideas that were unique and creative, making the planning process so much fun.

Temple’s mom, Lucy Tutwiler, noted that Tracy James from Chic Made Simple was invaluable when it came to assisting with the bride’s trousseau and many of the wedding parties’ outfits. Always cool, calm and collective, Tracy’s eye for style at affordable prices was so appreciated.

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The happy couple poses with Frank and Pardis Stitt of Bottega.

Bottega, under the guidance of Frank Stitt, is certainly one of Birmingham’s most revered restaurants.  He did not disappoint with a  sumptuous menu of  avocado tartare canapé, beef carpaccio canapé, fried oysters, shrimp risotto, smoked salmon with watercress and more. Each dish was a masterpiece in itself.

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Guests were treated to a buffet of delicacies created by Frank Stitt and his staff at Bottega including mini burgers, grilled jumbo asparagus and shaved parmigiano, grilled chicken with bibb, pasta, sweet peas and mint and other delights.

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The multitude of candles offer a lovely effect on the wedding buffet.

Wanting to pay homage to the start of their relationship, Temple and Allyson selected a groom’s cake to pay tribute to the many, many Optifast shakes they sipped together.
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Not your typical groom’s cake, but certainly, one that speaks volumes about Temple and Allyson’s relationship.

But, no wedding is complete without sumptuous, multi-tiered (calorie filled) wedding cake. The one created by Gia’s Cakes, the red velvet cake creation was divine. Leave it to Michael Dyer of Uncut Flowers to sprinkle his magic dust. Isn’t the adornment of the cake and setting, perfectly lovely?
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The wedding cake was created by Gia’s Cake.

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Allyson views the wedding cake and flowers.

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Another creative idea from the bride, guests were encouraged to write their best wishes for the couple’s happy future.

Leave it to a guest from Nashville to get the party rock n’ rolling. There’s not a better ” rent-a-guest” than Axon West. Axon (Uncle, by marriage, to the groom) is a legendary and skilled raconteur, who travels with or creates  inventive costumes for any occasion. When the guests seemed reluctant to get out and do the two-step, the entire West family came to the rescue.
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No, this is not a “rent a guest,” but the groom’s uncle (by marriage!).


No wedding is complete without the college crowd to cut the rug!

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With a little encouragement, everyone hit the dance floor.

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The couple exits in a flurry of rose petals.

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A vintage automobile adorned with a garland of roses and hydrangeas awaited the couple as they leave the wedding reception.

Temple and Allyson’s wedding accomplished what they wanted–an intimate gathering of family and friends that was a whole lot of fun!

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About the Author
Elizabeth Fox