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Darianna Bridal Real Bride: Ellen Frankel-Blake

The Meeting:  Chris and I met when I graduated college and started my first real job in the corporate world. He was my assistant manager…for only a short period. I never believed in love at first sight, but when I saw him I knew I had to be with him!  We started hanging out and the rest is history.

The Proposal:  I love my proposal story… The Grand Canyon! We went out to Arizona with his sister to stay with his Aunt, Uncle and cousins in Washington State.  I have always wanted to go to the Grand Canyon so we made plans to spend a few nights there.

Once we got there we started out on the first trail, about halfway through we went down a little path to see the edge and that’s when he got down on one knee, just us and the Canyon as our back drop, it was perfect! I come to find out that his family we were staying with earlier in the week knew about the whole plan and of course my parents especially my Dad; it was always something I wished was that he would ask his permission before doing so. What can I say, I am a daddy’s girl!

The Ring and a little Kismet:  Just for fun, I downloaded an app that you can design your own ring.  Because Chris always knows how to buy things I love, I knew he would pick the perfect engagement ring for me.  Amazingly, the ring he gave to me was literally the SAME ONE that I designed… and he never saw it, nor did he know that I had the app!

Their Venue:  We always knew that we wanted an outdoor wedding, nothing fancy and stuffy. Considering the weather we knew we would want it in June. Chris’s family has a house in Ocean City Maryland and we spend a good portion of our summers down there, so we thought the beach would be perfect. We looked into the little towns down there and fell in love with Bethany Beach. We both come from small families and didn’t want a huge guest list so finding The Addy Sea was perfect.











A bed and breakfast on the beach, with a private yard along the dunes, fully rented out to us for the whole weekend! The bridal party and parents stayed in the bed and breakfast and the 50 guests stayed in a small hotel down the street. They were all brought to the location in a shuttle made from the original Bethany Beach boardwalk from years and years ago.

With the ocean as our back drop and Chinese lanterns filling the sky, we got married and danced the night away under the stars. It was the most beautiful and perfect night of our lives and from what all our friends and family tell us, the best time they ever had at a wedding.











Saying Yes to Her Dress:  My dress was easier to find than I thought. I could narrow down the style pretty easily. Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo had so many beautiful dresses that when I fell in love with a dress while looking with my mom I felt it could be the one, but knew that I could not make the decision without my dad’s approval.  When he came to see it on me… let’s just say it was not the reaction I was expecting.

While I was in the dressing room he noticed a brand new dress that they just got in still in the bag hanging on the end of the rack.  He said, “I think you need to try that on.”  So I did.  When I came out it brought us all to tears!  My Marine father “got something in his eyes” and that was my dress!

Simple and elegant with just a little sparkle. To accompany my dress I knew I wanted a veil. I always envisioned walking down the aisle and at the end my dad would lift it over my face, then hand me off to my husband to be. I found a lace headband to go with the veil that completed the look. Chris got me a pearl necklace and pearl earrings for one of our anniversaries so I knew that’s what I wanted to wear. It also went perfectly with the little pearl accents on my dress, which was not planned it was fate!

Theme: Chris and I are not flashy or loud, so when thinking of a theme it was only right that we would do a rustic theme with accents of burlap and lace. We chose a pale pink and pale mint as our colors; they looked so pretty next to the lace and burlap without looking like a “color theme.”

My mom and I made almost everything for the wedding. We both are pretty creative people and love doing arts and crafts and design. Chris and I collected vintage bottles including Coke, Pepsi and mason jars and my mom and I painted the insides of them the colors of the wedding. They were lined in a single line down the tables with a single long stem daisy in each to make the centerpieces.












We had a beautiful sparkler send off at the end of the night which was like a cherry on top!











Speaking of cake – we didn’t want the traditional cake so we did a small square cake on a top tier that we would cut and below were tiers of cupcakes sitting in lace cups and topped with mini edible pearls. I surprised Chris with a groomsman cake in the theme of The Day of The Dead (which match his tattoos) and topped with personal handmade skulls, one groom and one bride painting in the wedding colors.













Our Song:  My favorite band is The Red Hot Chili Peppers. While listening to them one day I came across the song “Finally” and knew that would be our song. It is about someone finally finding the love of their life and never letting go. At the end of the night our DJ said he never heard that song before and loved it, so unique and personal.

Tradition:  The something old, new, borrowed, and blue was a big part of my day. My mom put a whole thing together, getting my mother in law and bridesmaids in a room. She read us a beautiful story explaining what each item meant to her and how it would incorporate with our day.  Something old was a necklace charm off the first piece of jewelry my dad ever gave my mom. She put it on a pin and I wore it on the inside of my dress. The something new was a pearl bracelet to go with my pearl jewelry I wore that day. The something borrowed was a ring that was given to my dad when he was a little by with his initial on it. I wore it all day long. My something blue was a handkerchief from my mom’s nanny. It had a blue butterfly on it, something I love dearly. I had it wrapped around my bouquet.

The Twist:  We were chosen to be on the cover of Seaside Bride of Delaware! My photographer and her husband are very involved in the community there and submitted many couples’ photos and WE were chosen to be on the cover!













It is an annual magazine so it is really special to have that as a memory.  A few weeks later we found out that they did a feature on us on their website since we were their first ever cover couple, they told our story, so cool!  Read it here!

With Gratitude:  We would like to thank our parents first! Without them our wedding would not have been possible. Our amazing family and friends have been nothing but supportive and were always there no matter what! We would really like to thank all of our vendors, especially Wendy and Franco at Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo, and our photographers for making the day so special! We really feel fortunate to have had such an amazing team behind us to help make our day exactly the way we wanted!













The Vendors:

  • Venue: The Addy Sea, Bethany Beach, DE
  • Photographer: Kristen Latham, A Day in A Life Photography
  • Bride’s Gown – Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo, Warrington, PA
  • Groom’s and Groomsmen Tuxedos – Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo
  • Bridesmaid Dresses – Darianna Bridal & Tuxedo
  • Jeweler: Michael’s Jewelers, Yardley PA