A California girl with a penchant for redheads meets a charming Nashville guy, and the rest, as they say, is history.
SB Note: this California gal, Martha Davis Dickerson, is part of our amazing StyleBlueprint team, so we’re especially thrilled to bring you this wedding today! While Martha works out of Memphis, she collaborates with our SB city teams in Atlanta, Birmingham, Charlotte, Louisville, and Nashville … Congrats, Martha and Andrew! Much love to you both. And, now back to our wedding story …
Martha and Andrew are the most darling of couples, a pair with a sweet love and adoration for each other, a joy that is absolutely contagious even at a glance. Martha first heard about Andrew while studying abroad in Italy, when her best friend mentioned a close friend from childhood with hair that rivals that of Prince Harry and Ron Weasley. Martha’s interest was immediately piqued. “She pulls up a photo of Andrew, and he’s in Honduras, and he’s holding little Honduran babies on a mission trip, and I looked at her and said ‘I love him — give him my number!’” Andrew and Martha ended up meeting briefly in college, and then their paths crossed again after Martha graduated and moved to Nashville. A few “we’re just friends” dates led to a long-distance relationship while Martha worked and Andrew attended medical school in Memphis.
Pretty quickly, it became apparent that they would spend the rest of their lives together. “I knew I wanted to marry him after our second date,” Martha says. “I literally called my mom and said, ‘I’m done. He’s the one.’” But because of Andrew’s busy medical school schedule, there were specific windows of time that their engagement and wedding would likely happen. The pair flew out to California one weekend between Andrew’s medical school rotations to visit Martha’s family, and Andrew surprised Martha with a proposal that came four months ahead of schedule. “He was really insisting on coming home with me. I thought we were flying home, and he was going to ask my dad for permission to marry me, when actually he was proposing,” Martha says. “I was really caught by surprise.”
It was the week before Martha’s birthday, and Andrew woke her up with flowers and told her that he had birthday presents for her and they were going to the beach to open them. “Andrew is a beautiful writer, and he has written me a lot of letters. For my birthday the year before, he wrote me a letter every day for two weeks leading up to my birthday, so it didn’t feel too out of the ordinary when he handed me a letter.” This particular letter reflected on how they met and the many things that Andrew loved about Martha and then transitioned into talking about the future. “I’m sitting there weeping, because it’s so beautiful, but it still hasn’t clicked in my brain that he’s proposing,” Martha says. “The end of the letter talked about how he was nervous on our first date, and he said ‘It’s funny how I was nervous then, but I’m not nervous at all right now,’ and I was like ‘Wait, why would you be nervous right now?’” There, on the beach in Martha’s beloved home state, he asked her to stand up and then got down on one knee and asked her to be his wife.
Martha’s dream for the wedding was simply a day that felt like a reflection of her and Andrew, of their relationship and interests, of their past and their future. “I wanted the wedding to feel a lot like us,” Martha says. “And I wanted it to be elegant and feel formal enough while also casual and approachable, earthy and romantic.” She wanted the ceremony to be timeless and true, focused on their faith and the importance of the covenant they were entering into with a reception filled with delicious food, fabulous music and lots of joyous dancing alongside the most important people in their world. Martha’s approach to wedding planning, as a bride without strong opinions on flowers and colors and dresses, was to find creative vendors, share her vision for the day with them, and then give them the space to be creative. This laid-back approach gave every vendor she chose the space to do their best work, and it all combined to create an absolutely stunning wedding day that felt relaxed and effortless while also detailed and thoughtful.
Martha and Andrew chose Calamigos Ranch, a sprawling property tucked in the Santa Monica mountains in Malibu, as the picturesque setting for their California wedding. Towering oak trees cover the property, and the mountains surrounding the ranch give it a cozy, intimate feel. An earthy color palette — soft shades of green, pink and a touch of champagne set off with pops of moody burgundy — enhanced the natural beauty of the venue. Martha’s gorgeous bridesmaids were ethereal in floor-length silver sage gowns in various styles, and they carried gathered bouquets of seeded eucalyptus, roses, anemones and dahlias, tied up with soft, raw-edge champagne ribbon. The groomsmen were handsome and refined in crisp white shirts and tailored suits accented with floral pocket squares, and the groom wore the same, plus a dapper burgundy tie. And, of course, the lovely bride was truly breathtaking in her lace gown with off-the-shoulder sleeves and flowers in her hair.
Martha and Andrew met under the sweeping branches of a 100-year-old oak tree on August 12, 2017, to exchange vows as the sun was just starting to set over the Santa Monica mountains. Twinkle lights dripped from the trees behind them, and the setting sun filtered in through a canopy of leaves. “The weather outside was so perfect, and during the ceremony the sun was coming through the trees,” Martha says. “It felt so special, the way that the sun was streaming in. It just felt like a little slice of heaven.” About 260 friends and family members gathered to witness the ceremony, which featured traditional vows and meaningful moments, most notably when the bride and groom received communion alongside their parents. “We are both really close to our parents, and we’re really grateful for the examples of marriage that we have,” Martha says. “We wanted to honor our parents, and our faith is very important to us, too, so in the middle of the ceremony we had our officiant lead us in communion.” Martha and Andrew exchanged rings, shared their first kiss and were pronounced husband and wife. Then, they headed back up the aisle they had walked down minutes earlier, but this time, they were together.
After the ceremony guests headed to the lawn, where they enjoyed cocktail hour and charcuterie plates and played corn hole on boards personalized to look like a cartoon Martha and Dr. Andrew in his scrubs! During cocktail hour, Martha and Andrew stole away for some quick post-ceremony photographs, allowing the couple to breathe and enjoy a few calm moments together before the reception began. They then joined the rest of the party for their first dance, loving toasts to the bride and groom, and an Italian-inspired seated meal featuring pasta, salmon or prime rib. After dinner, the bride and groom danced the night away with friends and family to renditions of “Dancing Queen,” “Brick House,” Beyonce’s “Love on Top” and “Someone Like You” by Adele — an especially important selection for Martha’s college friends — to name a few. “The band had a list of 500 songs, so we got to go through and pick every song they played,” Martha says. “The dance floor was just awesome all night. We danced until we couldn’t anymore.”
At the end of the evening, Mr. and Mrs. Dickerson headed into the night, flanked by loved ones and sent off under a shower of bubbles. They honeymooned in Cabo and are now enjoying a two-months-new blissful newlywed life in Memphis!
Thank you so much for sharing your incredible wedding day with us, Martha and Andrew!
Photography: Gina & Ryan Photography
Wedding planner: Events by Rona
Wedding dress: BHLDN
Bridesmaids’ dresses: Show Me Your Mumu
Groom and groomsmen’s attire: Combatant Gentlemen
Cake: Susie Cakes
Flowers: Unique Floral Designs
Venue: Calamigos Ranch
Band: Rembrandt Band
Hair & makeup: Cheek to Cheek Artistry
Merchandise & stationery design: Minted
Calligrapher: Kelly Patrice
Videography: Rayne Films
Guest accommodations: Westlake Village Inn, Four Seasons Westlake Village, Residence Inn Los Angeles Westlake Village
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