A few extra sparks flew on July 4, 2013, when Martin Rhea and Lindsey Donovan met. They both grew up in the Memphis area, Martin from Germantown and Lindsey from more rural Somerville, but their paths had never crossed until that fateful Independence Day. From that point on, Lindsey says, she and Martin were basically inseparable. As they fell in love, they shared their passion for travel and experiencing new cultures and places, as well as their love for staying in and enjoying life at home.
In 2017, Martin and Lindsey came home from his company Christmas party, and there, in the home they bought together, Martin asked Lindsey to be his wife. It was the perfect moment — simple, sweet, and private, and she, of course, said yes. “It was very special to us both, being right there at home and just the two of us,” Lindsey says. “It’s a very personal and a special memory.” And with even more to celebrate that holiday season, these two got right to planning their perfect wedding.
Lindsey envisioned a day that was fun, festive and beautiful, but that also had a touch of the vintage flair she loves. She pulled from memories of friends’ weddings and browsed Pinterest as she decided on the day’s muted, dusty rose-centered color palette and an overall romantic look teeming with florals and lots of sparkling candlelight and charm.
With this specific vision in mind, Lindsey knew the venue would play a critical role in the day’s aesthetic, so from the moment she got engaged, this bride had her eyes on Annesdale Mansion. The circa-1850 17,000-square-foot mansion nestled in the Annesdale Snowden historic district in Memphis is an absolute dream. Palatial 14-foot hand-painted ceilings, crystal chandeliers and original walnut paneling all contribute to the antique look of the space — the ideal backdrop for Lindsey and Martin’s vintage-inspired day.
With her bridesmaids alongside her one Saturday morning at Maggie Louise, Lindsey found her dress: an absolutely stunning Romona Keveza gown with an antique-inspired lace bodice and an ethereal tulle skirt; she accented it with a crystal and satin belt for a little sparkle. She went with a mixed-and-matched bridesmaids look, with all of her maids in floor-length gowns that picked up on the dusty rose tones she’d been inspired by while envisioning the wedding. The ladies carried lush bouquets in shades of dusty rose, pale pink, cream and green, and the groom and his groomsmen wore simple boutonnieres in the same palette, perfectly complementing their charcoal gray suits and champagne ties.
The morning of their April 2019 wedding was a rainy one, but this lovely bride didn’t skip a beat. “We didn’t let it get us down,” says Lindsey. “We made the most of it, creating a warm and inviting, intimate setting inside that was overflowing with flowers, food and fun times!” Without any concerns about the weather, the bride spent the morning sipping champagne from personalized champagne flutes in matching robes with her bridesmaids and enjoying quality time with her aunt and Martin’s mother and sister — a special morning that Lindsey says is one of her fondest memories from the day. After the bride and groom were ready in their wedding day finest, they met on the Annesdale porch for a sweet-as-can-be first look.
As the evening began to settle over Annesdale, guests gathered while a string quartet played. Once everyone was in their seats, the music swelled and the bride entered the room on the arm of her beloved aunt, who Lindsey asked to be her escort in the stead of her late parents. “My choice of asking my aunt, my mom’s sister, to help with this duty was extra special,” says Lindsey. “My aunt, who doesn’t have children of her own, and I have always been very close, and she has been a very influential person in my life. It was extra wonderful having her be such an important part of my day and walk me down the aisle to give me away.” At the altar, Lindsey and Martin were led by their officiant who also happened to be Lindsey’s relative, Pastor Betsy Eaves. With vows and rings and a kiss, the new Mr. and Mrs. Rhea were pronounced husband and wife and headed back up the aisle.
The couple spent the evening mingling with their guests, dancing and soaking up every moment of their celebration. “Seeing friends and family all come together and everyone have such a great time at the end of it all was very special,” says Lindsey. Guests enjoyed a selection of delicious heavy appetizers to keep the energy up while they hit the dance floor, and they sipped on personalized whiskey tastings for the groom’s bar selection and “R”-(for Rhea) label rosé to represent the bride. Even in the midst of the celebrations, the importance of family was felt. “My officiant and family member Betsy came up to me during the reception and whispered ‘I feel your mom here — she’s right here with us!’” says Lindsey. “That was a very special and memorable moment that I won’t forget.”
At the end of the night, with sparklers sparkling and guests cheering, the bride and groom headed off into the night toward their happily ever after.
We wish you the very best, Lindsey and Martin! Thank you for sharing a look into your dreamy day with us!
Photography: Sara Ann Green Photography
Wedding planner: Betsy McKay, Salt Style and Events
Wedding dress: Legends by Romona Keveza, from Maggie Louise Bridal Boutique
Bridesmaids’ dresses: Jenny Yoo, from Bella Bridesmaids
Groom: American Tuxedo
Groomsmen attire: American Tuxedo
Cake: Laura Jackson, The Flour Garden
Flowers: Kristin Wolter, Everbloom Design
Event design/rentals: White Door Events & Amerispan Tents, Inc.
Venue: Annesdale Mansion
Catering: Cindy Krag Catering & More
Band: Party Planet, via Resource Entertainment Group
Hair: Salon 387
Makeup: Kasey Acuff
Merchandise/stationery design: Minted Weddings
Videography: Malik Sharp, Feather Stone Weddings
Guest accommodations: Hotel Napoleon
Photo booth: Amurica
Nails: Nail Bar & Company
Late-night catering: Slider Rider
Ceremony music: Simply Strings
Wine, beer, and whiskey: Kirby Wines
Bouquet preservation: Forever Flowers, Inc.
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