Brianna Baxter and John Paul Noland may have started as high school sweethearts, but their engagement would perhaps be considered a little less conventional. The couple started planning their nuptials four months before Brianna started wearing an engagement ring. In fact, John proposed in their eventual reception venue. “I thought I was meeting a wedding planner – but in reality he had a musician playing our song – ‘What are your doing New Year’s Eve?’ – a videographer, and all of my family there be part of that special moment in our lives! I had no clue and was so shocked, surprised, and ecstatic!” the bride reveals.
Given their song, it’s no surprise they decided to get married on New Year’s Eve. The planner who Brianna intended to meet with on their engagement day, Mary Wright Shah of Diamond Affairs Weddings & Special Events, teamed up with Bella Flora of Dallas to design a stunning wintry aesthetic with all the sparkle expected for the holiday. Ivory flower petals were artfully arranged in glowing light fixtures, as well as unique floral chandeliers serving as centerpieces that cascaded down towards the king’s tables. As Brianna and John were living in Santa Monica at the time, the mother of the bride helped to create the look for the big day in Dallas, Texas. “My mom has an absolutely amazing eye for design,” the bride affirms.
Of course, before the incredible décor could be revealed, the marriage ceremony had to occur, which the couple took very seriously. “Our relationship is based on our faith in Jesus – so we wanted it to be a celebration but at the same time, not lose the reverence that comes with committing yourself to another person in Christ,” the bride explains. Following the processional down the tree-lined aisle, the family prayed together. Brianna and John then exchanged vows and sealed their marriage with a kiss, after 10 years of dating.
Not everyone would choose a holiday for their anniversary, but the newlyweds wouldn’t dream of doing anything differently. “Going up on the stage with the band to countdown to midnight and looking out at all of the guests who had taken time out of their holiday season to support our relationship and celebrate our love was a really special moment for us,” the bride muses.