When choosing where to exchange vows, Theresa Tupea and retired professional basketball player Brendan Haywood – formerly of the Cleveland Cavaliers and NBA championship-winning 2011 Dallas Mavericks – knew an uptown art museum in Charlotte, North Carolina, would make for a dream location once the big day arrived. 

The bride was gorgeous in a form-fitting, long-sleeve gown featuring a plunging neckline for the all-white ceremony; she wore her hair down in elegant curls and carried a bouquet of orchids, her favorite flower. Her groom was dapper in a navy blue tuxedo and tie. Bridesmaids wore off-the-shoulder gowns and carried nosegays of roses, dahlias, and additional blooms in shades of ivory, purple, and burgundy as they made their way to the front of the ceremony space. The spot for the vow exchange was marked with acrylic risers topped with vanilla-toned hydrangeas, roses, and orchids that created a fragrant setting for the heartfelt service. 

Following the ceremony, loved ones found their table assignments on an acrylic seating chart prior to entering the reception space and taking their seats atop modern clear-backed chairs. The décor showcased sophisticated and glamorous details in hues of purple, burgundy, navy, and gold to create the upscale, modern, and elegant feel the bride envisioned. Tall centerpieces showcased orchids and roses, and a stunning suspended floral installation over the head table wowed guests. White lounge furniture decorated with glittering pillows surrounded the large dance floor emblazoned with Theresa and Brendan’s initials, and gorgeous drapery overhead set the scene for the night to come. 

To keep their energy up throughout the night, 230 loved ones enjoyed a variety of desserts as well as slices from the couple’s six-layer wedding cake featuring lace appliqués that mimicked the bride’s veil, ivory fondant with shimmering details, and a cake topper displaying the newlyweds’ new shared initial. While the day was sophisticated and elegant, the pair also made sure to incorporate some personal elements, such as a mother-son dance and a fun photo booth to enjoy with friends. Since the bride is Samoan, cultural additions were also added throughout the fête: Some of the fare served during the dinner service honored her heritage, her family performed a traditional dance together during the reception, and guests took home hibiscus-shaped cookies as an ode to Theresa’s hometown in Samoa as wedding favors.