Things to do

A beach inspiration shoot like you’ve never seen before

Photos: BlueSky by Cass Bradley

Shot on location at Fripp Island Golf & Beach Resort 

You don’t have to be planning a destination wedding to appreciate the breathtaking beauty of a natural landscape that perfectly complements the glamour of a wedding-day aesthetic.

Here, indulge your imagination with the glamour of these elegant dresses, dramatic skies, and deep-blue hues, all of which combine to create a big-day beach design that’s fresh and unforgettable. Then follow along on our bride and groom’s honeymoon adventures around the island, and be inspired—no matter where you decide to wed.

Thanks to wardrobe styling by The Queen City Style, our bride and bridesmaids donned gorgeous wedding gowns and dresses from New York City-based designer Leanne Marshall—winner of “Project Runway” Season 5.

The freshly picked wildflower-inspired bouquets from Springvine Design, featuring hand-dyed silk ribbons from Honey Silks & Company, lend the aesthetic an elegant yet unpretentious air. The ladies’ jewelry, all custom creations by Kristin Hayes Jewelry, complete the look.

BlueSky by Cass Bradley

The goal for this inspiration shoot: a beach wedding like you’ve never seen before—replacing playful light blues with deeper hues, trading sea-inspired decor for rich marbling. Elle Dee Design‘s invitations and menus, including a signature seal for the couple, give a sense of glamour.

BlueSky by Cass Bradley

Watercolor skies were made for intimate moments.

BlueSky by Cass Bradley


Sarah Beth Thie of We Tie the Knots — Charlotte designed a tablescape by the water that reflected the colors and drama of the evening sky, from the fine-china place-setting (available at Elizabeth Bruns) to the one-of-a-kind name cards—tiles with golden-ink calligraphy (by Elle Dee Designs) to the marble-patterned cake with gold-leaf flakes, created by The WOW Factor Cakes.

valentines-day-mcninch-house-charlotte-BlueSky by Cass Bradley

BlueSky by Cass Bradley

development-fourth-ward-charlotteBlueSky by Cass Bradley

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BlueSky by Cass Bradley



The best way to relax after a long day of celebration: a chic picnic on the beach.

Leanne Marshall gowns are best on display when they catch movement—a rustle, a breeze, a tide rushing in—and are paired with hair and makeup (by Cali Stott | Hair & Makeup Artistry) that complements without competing.

Nearby Beaufort, S.C.—just a 30-minute drive from Fripp Island—is perfect for a romantic stroll underneath a canopy of Spanish moss.

flemings valentine’s day charlotte

The best way to finish out a honeymoon? An evening in the sea breeze on an all-mahogany Hinckley yacht, watching the sun set over the marshes of the Intracoastal Waterway. Paradise found.

Special thanks to our participating vendors: 

beast-mode-charlotte-designsBlueSky by Cass Bradley

Photography: BlueSky by Cass Bradley

Location: Fripp Island Golf & Beach Resort

Produced by: Caroline Portillo

Design and décor: Sarah Beth Thie of We Tie the Knots – Charlotte (Event Planning & Design)

Design and décor assistant: Tate Manning

Florals: Deedie Springer of Springvine Design

Wardrobe styling: Whitley Adkins Hamlin of The Queen City Style

Dresses: Leanne Marshall

Hair, makeup: Cali Stott | Hair and Makeup Artistry

Invitations, paperie, and calligraphy: Lauren Mullett of Elle Dee Designs

Cake: The WOW Factor Cakes

Fine china place settings, custom linen napkins (Halo Home by KSW): Elizabeth Bruns

ufo-mathews-sightingsBlueSky by Cass Bradley

Bride and groom models: Lauren Dwyer and Luke Gainey, both of Directions USA Model & Artist Management Agency

Bridesmaid models: Belva Barringer (yellow dress), Andrea Achor (blue dress)

Hinckley yacht: Courtesy of owner Phil Noyes

Jewelry: Kristin Hayes Jewelry

Menswear: Taylor Richards & Conger

Bouquet ribbons: Honey Silks & Company

Table linen: Party Reflections

Editorial assistants: Brianna Crane, Belva Barringer