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Real Bride Spotlight: Angela & Jesse’s Duke Wedding

Man and Wife kissing in the street under pretty lights

I met Jesse at Duke University when we were in our junior year of college in biochemistry. While applying for medical schools, we found ourselves in the position where we would be long distance for the next four years. Jesse ended up staying at Duke for medical school, while I went to Loyola University in Chicago. We got engaged at Duke, and we knew that we wanted to get married in the Duke Gardens. It was quite an experience planning a North Carolina wedding from Chicago, but teamwork made the perfect day come true.

Beautiful bride and bouquet


What was your wedding date?
May 6, 2017

Bride being zipped up


What was your wedding location and venue name?
The ceremony was at the Duke Gardens in Durham, NC and the reception was at 21c Museum Hotel Durham.

Bride and bouquet outside


Who is the designer of your wedding gown and where did you purchase it?
It’s Allure Bridals, Style 9350 purchased at Weddings 826 in Chicago, IL.

Bride and groom holding hands


When did you know your gown was “the one”?
The dress caught my eye because of the beautiful beading and intricate lacework. The dress made me feel so beautiful that I knew it was the one I wanted to wear for my future husband on the most memorable day of our lives.

Pink wedding dress hanging up


What is your absolute favorite memory from your wedding day?
We did not do a first look before the ceremony, so seeing my husband’s face when he saw me walking down the aisle was the happiest I’ve ever seen him.

Bride and groom


What made your wedding ceremony feel extra special?
We wrote our entire ceremony, and asked one of our best friends to officiate it. He told the best stories about us, and the ceremony was completely personal. We also walked down the aisle together as a married couple to the theme song from Up, the movie! Additionally, having our friends and family come from across the US and also from China made us feel so loved.

Beautiful bride


Why did you want to get your gown cleaned?
We haven’t decided what our plans are with the dress, but we both loved my dress so much that we knew we definitely wanted it cleaned first and foremost.

Groom kissing the head of his bride


Why did you decide to get your gown cleaned by Janet Davis Cleaners, a member of the Association of Wedding Gown Specialists?
I wanted someone who specialized in wedding gowns since my gown has so many details, when I found Janet Davis Cleaners and realized I drove by it every day on my way to work, the choice was easy!

Photographer: L’Amour Foto at

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