OZ Blog: How did Richard propose to you?
Hayley: I used to live in Nashville and my favorite spot in the city is at the top of the pedestrian bridge.
My other favorite spot is the rooftop of Acme with a moonshine lemonade in hand. That’s where I thought we were headed when his friends asked if we could walk over the bridge to see Nissan stadium.
R. got a work call and told us to keep walking while he took it. I continued explaining to Brett and Caroline every experience I had at Titan’s stadium. “I went to one football game once. It was kinda boring. We bought the tickets on Groupon… I got kicked out of a One Direction concert there [another story for another time], um… CMA Fest is there…” I didn’t have much but I was trying to feed their “love” of NFL stadiums.
R. came up and grabbed me, saying that he needed to talk about the stressful call he just got. We walked over to the railing where he (lied to me) told me all of the anxiety-inducing details of the call. At one point, he leaned over the railing of the bridge, looked down at me and said, “I love you”. I responded, “Are you telling me you are about to jump off the bridge?” He responded, “no, I’m telling you I want to spend the rest of my life with you” and he got down on one knee.
The next few moments are quite a blur – it was hard to get my mind to jump from suicide to proposal so quickly. I know that he asked. I know that I said yes.
Luckily, R’s amazingly talented twin sister is a professional photographer. She had flown in from NYC and had been sneaking up behind us to capture the whole thing.
As we walked back over the bridge toward Acme (finally .. moonshine lemonades) I was too busy piecing together who knew what to think that there could be anything else coming. Wrong again.
We walked up the 4 flights to the rooftop of Acme. Just as we stepped out of the stairwell, I heard cheers to my left. 30-40 of our closest friends and family were all gathered together, waiting to celebrate with us. People had come from Alabama, DC, NYC, Chicago, and South Carolina to be a part of this perfect day. R. had been plotting (again..lying) for months. I promptly cried, told every person there that I no longer trusted them, drank my moonshine lemonade, and enjoyed the best day of life with all of our favorite people.
The day was filled with countless hugs, laughs, and (finally) moonshine lemonades. The night was filled with music on Broadway and my signature off-tune rendition of “Should’ve Been A Cowboy” on a stage. R. had painstakingly created my absolute perfect day.
OZ Blog: How did you choose what to wear?
Hayley: I had been picturing the skirt since we got engaged. That was the easy part. I chose the sweater because it kept it more casual – we wanted to look nice, but we’re not overly fancy people. I wanted something simple on top so the focus would stay on the perfect skirt.
OZ Blog: How did you decide to wear Olia Zavozina?
Hayley: I was in Nashville to tour venues a few months ago and found myself with a few extra hours in the morning. On a whim, my mom and I scheduled an appointment at Olia Zavozina. Not only did we find my dream dress (the very first one I tried on) but we also found the tulle skirt I had been dreaming of.
OZ Blog: What was the inspiration for your theme?
Hayley: I’ve always had a thing for tutus. I was never a ballerina but loved skirts that twirl. My mom loves talking about my phase around age two where I refused to wear anything but a crinoline. I was a teacher the past four years and my kids can tell you – I would find any excuse to wear a tutu to school. Spirit day? Tutu. Tuesday? Tutu. I wanted the romantic feel of a long skirt with the fun tulle material (like a grown up tutu).
OZ Blog: Do you have any engagement photo advice for other brides?
Hayley: Don’t stress! I wasted so much time searching for the perfect outfits for engagement photos. At the end of the day, I chose the skirt that I knew I wanted all along and other pieces I had owned for years. Engagement photos are awkward in a way – staring into each other’s eyes and holding a cheek-kiss while strangers walk by and stare. The best thing you can do is choose clothes that you know you’re comfortable in (and you’re excited to wear) and a photographer you’re comfortable with.
Richard and Hayley will be married, July 15, 2017, in Nashville.
Special thanks to Aly Greer at Wild Cotton Photography.