wedding day style and spirit


For Kelly and Cale Medley, history was of monumental importance on their wedding day. Most would guess that it’s because of the deep personal history the two share with one another; they were high school sweethearts and stuck together while earning their undergraduate degrees at Winthrop University before marrying last year.

But while Kelly and Cale may have a history of their own, Kelly also found a way to incorporate the love of another special couple, her grandparents, into her wedding day style by attaching a beautiful brooch with a wonderful story to her lovely purple and white bouquet.

Marrying Present with Past

Kelly’s grandfather, a WWII veteran who was part of the Rhineland campaign, bought the nautical-themed brooch for her grandmother when he was stationed in France. He kept the piece with him as he served in the military, even assisting in liberating a Nazi-run concentration camp. Upon his return to the United States, he presented his love with the gorgeous guilloche enamel piece, which can also be flipped over to reveal a small time piece intended to be worn on a lady’s lapel.

Not only is the piece itself enchanting, but Kelly’s feisty and fun demeanor is so similar to that of her grandmother that visiting her  is like peering into a crystal ball to see her own future. The fact that the piece once belonged to her grandmother, her only living grandparent and undoubtedly the member of the family who is most like her, makes the piece all the more special.

Due to concerns about the summer heat overwhelming her, Kelly’s 92-year old grandmother was unable to make the trip from Tennessee to South Carolina to see Kelly wed Cale. Pinning her grandmother’s brooch to the front of her bouquet not only served as her “something old,” but it also allowed her grandmother’s presence be made at the ceremony.

On the last day of their honeymoon, the newlyweds decided to swing by Kelly’s grandmother’s house to show her a photo of how her granddaughter had incorporated the family heirloom into her big day. “She was very touched and cried,” Kelly recalls, also noting how thrilled her grandmother had been to simply see the couple in person.

While wedding traditions can sometimes seem cliché, Kelly’s innovative integration of “something old” into her wedding day style proves that it is possible to make wedding traditions personal and original by using them to connect to the past.

Image Source: Mayfield Photography

Casey Lindberg-Coghill