Witten by: Clare Spencer
Photography by: Brandon Rais
Jeanne was off to Mimi’s simply to find what she liked, she wasn’t expecting to fall in love with a gown. It was the day before a trunk show and the gowns from the designer arrived early. So Jeanne was able to see gowns that were only at Mimi’s for the weekend. After trying on several dresses Jeanne was helped into an Allure ballgown and she knew it was something special.
“I immediately fell in love with it. There was just something about the style of embroidery that reminded me of my grandmother’s work with a hint of European architecture.”
Not only were the details unique but the gown wasn’t your average ivory or white. The gown had hints of champagne and gold throughout the fabric and silver crystals outlining the neckline.
“[It] had an elegance that I hadn’t felt in a wedding dress before.”
What made Jeanne nervous was the fact that, because this gown was part of the trunk show it was going to be shipped out after the weekend and she wouldn’t have another chance to try it on again. Jeanne wasn’t ready to “say yes to the dress” quite yet. She returned on a later date and was able to try gowns similar in style, silhouette, and fabric to the one she loved from the show. She loved everything about the golden ballgown except for how deep the sweetheart neckline was. Luckily, the designer was willing to modify the neckline and keep the outlining crystal design. In the end, Jeanne’s gown could have everything she wanted. She focused on “having an indescribable feeling”, pushed her indecisive feelings aside, and with the help of her mother and a friend, Jeanne decided to go for it.
Jeanne and William both earned their bachelor’s degree in Chemistry- Jeanne in Chicago where she’s from and William at Eastern Michigan near Saline where he is from. They both decided to go on to earn their PhDs in analytical chemistry at the University of Michigan where they met for the first time at an invitation weekend. It wasn’t until much later at orientation that their paths crossed again and they struck up a friendship. After remaining friends for more than a year, they entered into a dating/romantic relationship.
The couple actually had a wedding date and venue reserved before William ever officially proposed. They had talked about getting married, but their plan was to wait a couple more years. They started looking at venues just to get some ideas but when they visited Weller’s in Saline- it instantly became their favorite. An opening for that summer became available while they were still touring the space and they decided to book it. Within a couple of days they had reserved the date at their church and the wedding planning process was in the works. A month later Jeanne was on vacation in Cancun when William surprised her by arriving for the day. At the first opportunity they had to be alone, William got down on one knee, in front of a ruin at the El Rey archeological dig and proposed.
“He soon told me how incredibly nervous he was, even though he knew I would say yes!”
Jeanne and William had their wedding ceremony at St. Francis of Assisi Church in Ann Arbor and as mentioned before their reception was at Weller’s in Saline.
“Weller’s was a perfect venue for us!”
It’s a converted grist mill that is rich in automotive history. It is most famous for being a processing facility for Henry Ford in 1938. This holds significance for the couple because not only does William work on cars in his free time but Jeanne’s thesis incorporated “studies of the environmental impact of plastics and improved “green” plastic materials.”
“The Weller’s property represents an industrial experiment to utilize plant material for automotive plastics, tying two of our passions together!”
Brandon Rais, the photographer for their wedding, gave Jeanne some great advice,
“You cannot control what will happen, and something(s) will not go the way you expect. So, it is best to just love the moment as it is, let things go and know that you are celebrating with the ones you love!”
With that in mind, Jeanne’s advice is simple and sweet, just remember,
“Things will be okay.”