A Love Supreme: Brenda Wood shares an intimate amoment with daughters Kristen and Kandis. Maid of honor Kristen wore a Monique Lhuillier gown befitting a ’50s Hollywood pin-up, Brenda’s Badgley Mischka gown conjured ’60s Motown glamor, but the bride Kandis stole the show in a timeless silhouette by Anne Barge Couture.
Corinthian columns, sparkling crystal chandeliers and arched bows laden with dogwood blossoms set the tone for the May 25, 2013 nuptials of Kandis Wood and Adam Jackson at 200 Peachtree in Atlanta.
The mother of the bride, 11Alive News anchor Brenda Wood, who literally shimmered in a fitted, rose gold gown by Badgley Mischka, summed up the affair in two words: “Fairy tale!” And given the bride’s blush and gold, custom-designed Anne Barge gown, the Prince Charming (Kandis’ dad, Dr. Keith Wood) who escorted his daughter down the aisle, and the harpist who played Debussy’s “Arabesque” before 400 assembled guests, Brenda’s characterization was no mere hyperbole. To the contrary, her maternal pride was bolstered by the knowledge that Kandis would be graduating from Harvard Law School the following week, before launching her new career as an associate at Alston & Bird LLP.
Though legally certified to perform marriage ceremonies, Keith deferred when his future son-in-law, a legal fee analyst at the Federal Social Security Office, asked him to do the honors, saying, “I wanted to enjoy the day as Daddy, as opposed to an officiant.” Fortunately, the bride’s uncle, the Rev. Timothy Blackmon of the Netherlands, had no such reservations and happily said “I will” when asked to consummate the union.
Nods to family values were evident in other aspects of the ceremony as well: from the brooch that belonged to her late grandmother which Kandis used to accessorize her bouquet, to her sister Kristen’s role as maid of honor, to Adam’s two siblings (out of Mary and Wesley Jackson’s 10 children) who served as the bridegroom’s attendants.
In total, there were 10 groomsmen, three ushers and 11 bridesmaids. “I thought I would cry at so many points throughout the day,” Brenda remembers, “but the truth is I couldn’t stop smiling from beginning to end.” Until she started to thank Kandis’ bridesmaids, who ranged from childhood friends to college and grad school chums, at which point Brenda says she got teary eyed when considering all the love and support these “accomplished and beautiful women have shown my daughter through the years.”
Brenda was equally appreciative of her A-Team: including wedding coordinator Christina Zubowicz of Magnolia Events and event planner Tony Conway of A Legendary Event, who proved to be a triple-threat as caterer and event and floral designer. “Honestly, after all the pre-planning required in anticipation of the wedding, by the time the actual day arrived I was done making decisions,” recalls the mom-in-chief. “But I was surrounded by professionals who were so creative, level-headed and respectful of my and Kandis’ wishes that I could abdicate all responsibility to Tony and Christina without a second thought.”
The admiration was mutual, says bridal couturier Anne Barge, adding “Kandis has such grace, and after getting to know Brenda I understand where it comes from. They were constantly thanking me, and never entered or exited any of our fittings at Buckhead Bridals by Guffeys without giving me a hug and a kiss. They were dream clients!”
Whether owing to beginner’s luck or the musicality of Rupert’s Orchestra, even Keith’s first dance to The Temptations “My Girl” with his daughter was a dream-come-true: in spite of his claims to “having two left feet.” And when a DJ took over the dance floor for the after-party, Kandis pumped up the volume as she reemerged in a tulle confection by Monique Lhuillier that had been shortened into an exquisite party dress.
The joyous event was capped off with two confetti drops for the newlyweds, and wedding favors of homemade peach preserves, tied with a tiny wooden spoon: encouraging each guest to “Spread the Love” happily ever after.
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