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Kelsey and Casey
After shopping countless trunk shows and bridal salons, Kelsey Adams was frustrated: She had spotted the gown she wanted online but couldn't find it anywhere. A marketing analyst for a department store, she was about to order a "good enough" choice when divine (fashion) intervention struck. "The dress I'd been obsessed with was just hanging behind a counter at the store," she says. After a try-on, tears (from the sales associate), and FaceTime with Mom, she became its proud owner.
The gown wasn't the first time fate had Kelsey circling back to a first love. She met Casey Flanagan, a financial research analyst, when they were freshmen at Southern Methodist University in Dallas in 2008, and they dated for almost three years before breaking up when each went on a semester abroad. The separation lasted 18 months, but by 2013, the Dallas duo were an item again. In 2014, during a trip to Napa, California, for a wedding, Casey proposed on a beach outside San Francisco. "I was shocked!" recalls Kelsey.
As with the gown and the groom, there was really only one choice for the venue: the Lyford Cay Club in the Bahamas. Casey's parents own a residence there—and even lived in the Bahamas when he was a baby—and he and Kelsey had visited often. On Labor Day weekend of 2015, the pair hosted a rehearsal dinner for family and attendants at the resort's yacht club, before leading a "Junkanoo" processional to a beach shack where other guests awaited them. After the Christian ceremony the next day (at which her childhood friends recited a psalm they had all memorized in school), she and Casey wanted to treat their 215 guests to a true Bahamian experience. The reception was full of island touches, from the hors d'oeuvres—including conch fritters with guava sauce served on the terrace during cocktail hour—to the six-tier coconut cake soaked in local coconut rum. "It was amazing to be surrounded by all our friends and family on an island that was already so special to us," says Casey. Some might even say that, like the dress, it was meant to be.
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The letterpressed suite by Rock Paper Scissors took its cues from the club's logo as well as native animals, plants, and shells.
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The intimate size and relaxed setting of Nassau, Bahamas, made spending time with guests a breeze for the pair: "When we would head out to the beach, all of our friends and family were there," explains Casey. "It was amazing to feel like we were completely surrounded by the people we love the entire weekend."
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The bride and her eight bridesmaids, a combination of girlfriends and family, primped for the big day in Lolli Swim cover-ups. Of her maid of honor (Casey's sister), Kelsey says, "I remember us both being really excited to 'have a sister' because I'm an only child, and she has two brothers."
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The event's coral, white, and green palette reflected the colors of the colonial-style Bahamian venue.
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Casey's aunt, owner of Tropical Threads Embroidery, gave custom handkerchiefs to the wedding party and family.
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An Outdoor Ceremony
Kelsey's uncle—a minister—officiated the ceremony on the grounds of the club.
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Picture Perfect Place
The newlyweds—who opted out of a first look—posed for portraits after the ceremony in the Lyford Cay Club living room, among other locations.
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Centerpieces of garden roses, pink hydrangeas, and blush peonies weren't the only flowers on the tables. Each silver napkin ring was topped with a cymbidium orchid.
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The groom and his mom took the floor to Nat King Cole's "Unforgettable."
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Location and catering, Lyford Cay Club
Event design, styling, and production, Easton Events
Flowers, lighting, and rentals, Floral Arts
Photography, Corbin Gurkin
Videography, Shaking Hands Productions
Stationery, Rock Paper Scissors
Calligraphy, Meant to Be Calligraphy (invitation expressions and envelopes); Leen Jean Studios (save-the-date envelopes)
Cake, The Cakebox Bahamas
Music, The Falcons Entertainment
Linens, La Tavola Fine Linen
Bride's gown, Oscar de la Renta
Bride's shoes, Christian Louboutin; L.K. Bennett
Bride's bracelet, Cartier
Bride's engagement ring, Zwikker & Zacher Ltd.
Hair and makeup, Studio Vivo Salon; Lyford Cay Club Spa
Bridesmaids' dresses, Carmen Marc Valvo
Bridesmaids' cover-ups, Lolli Swim
Groom's jacket, Culwell & Son
Groom's pants, Ralph Lauren Black Label
Groom's bow tie, Carrot & Gibbs
Groom's cuff links and studs, Mister Tuxedo
Groom's shirt, Suitsupply
Groom's watch, Rolex
Groom's shoes, Stubbs & Wootton
Embroidered handkerchiefs, Tropical Threads Embroidery
Wedding rings, William Noble Rare Jewels