Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Tell us about the dress and what inspired your look. 

My overall goal for my look was to make sure that I still looked like myself.  I knew I wanted an elegant dress that wasn’t over the top or really form-fitting.  I wanted it to show off my figure but be comfortable and, of course, really pretty.  Once I put on the dress I was smitten.  It was classic but had the fun flare up the right side.  My maid of honor said “that’s so you” and that helped seal the deal!  I had the same approach with my hair and makeup.  My hair is naturally curly so I found a salon that could work with that, and my stylist had me come in with my hair done “my way” and then she worked that into the updo.  It was perfect.

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

What were the most important details to pulling off your dream wedding? 

Since my teenage years, the only thing I knew I wanted for my wedding was a different cake for every table.  I pictured Scott & I walking around greeting our guests, and getting to sample a different cake as we stopped at each table.  We ended up with 13 different cakes in all, including a small one for us to cut, and it was fantastic.  Our guests loved it and used it as an opportunity to get up and try different things themselves.  I also wanted to blend some of my favorite holiday traditions into the wedding, since it was only 5 days before Christmas, without being too kitschy.  The church was decorated with poinsettias and garlands, we had all guests hold a lit candle during a part of the ceremony, and guests took home glass suncatchers with poinsettias on them.   We hand made traditional British Christmas Crackers, which had table assignments on the tags, and included things like chapstick, paper hats and local saltwater taffy. 

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

What was the most memorable moment? 

Scott and I did a first look on the porch of the hotel by the ocean before heading to the church and it was the best decisions that we made!  It helped to calm our nerves and was one of the few moments that we had just for us during the entire day.  It was a really special moment and made for some great photos as well.

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

If you could give future brides any advice, what would it be? 

Figure out what is most important to you and focus your attentions there, let others help with details that aren’t as important to you.  For example, my mom has impeccable taste and offered to be in charge of the flowers.  I gave her a few pictures I liked and let her run with it.  I didn’t even know what was in my bouquet until it was handed to me on the day of the wedding.  It turned out beautifully and was one less thing that I had to worry about.  Also, the best advice I was given was to not sweat it if things didn’t go to plan on the big day, since as far as 99% of our guests knew, it was all supposed to happen that way!

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Jessica & Scott - Dress by Carol Hannah from Lovely Philly - Photo by Dove Photography

Photographer:  Scott & Cat of Dove Photography // Dress: Lovely Bride, Carol Hannah // Lovely Bride Location: Philadelphia // Veil: Dana Veil by Untamed Petals // Hair Clip: Fiberstone / Shoes: Tieks by Gavrieli // Venue: The Breakers on the Ocean // DJ + Photobooth: Chris Garrow of Unforgettable DJ’s // Hair + Makeup: Jackie at Salon Cartarae // Florist: Narcissus Florals