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Q&A: Neon meets Fringe

by Katie Mouallek |

On meeting your heart:

Ricky and I met through mutual friends. We went on our first one-on-one date in 2012. While day drinking on that date, he went in for a kiss and it caught me off guard. His glasses poked me in the eye. It did kind of hurt but I didn’t say anything (maybe it was all the shots we took that day). I was living 90 miles away from Ricky then but we managed to spend every weekend together. We went on a lot of other vacations during our ‘courtship’. Traveling is a shared passion between us, despite the fact that I am scared shitless of flying. I prefer to get to the airport about two hours early so I can foster a buzz before take off. Things have not always been easy. We broke up for a year in 2015. I was heartbroken. Literally, almost in tears writing this because it reminds me of that pain. But we made it back to each other. He is the rock to my roll. He is an optimist and I am a realist. We are happy. We are lucky.

 sara and ricky wedding photo1

The engagement:

Okay, I like this story. I am a reporter and I was at the scene of a murder when Ricky texted me “Hey, what size ring do you wear?” I was half annoyed because I was busy, but also so excited. I sensed he was going to propose during our upcoming trip to New York City over the New Year’s holiday. My womanly instincts were correct. We were standing outside our hotel while he finished his cigarette on December 30, 2016. I went in for a hug because it was so cold. I felt something hard in his coat pocket and um accidentally found my ring! (YAY!)  It was a stunning 1.5 carat round solitaire. Classic and shiny. He later told me he had planned to propose New Year’s Day while on a Hudson River cruise. He also said he hired a photographer to capture the moment-- oops, but what a cutie he is! The rest of the trip I was showing anyone and everyone my ring. I couldn’t wait to start ripping pages out of wedding magazines and look on Pinterest and Instagram for ideas! That is obviously what I did the whole plane ride home, that and drink vodka.

sara&ricky_wedding photo

On wedding planning:

This is an interesting experience. You learn a lot, you get sticker shock, you fight with your parents. The list continues. Ricky was very sweet through this whole process. I don’t think we fought, regarding the planning. Obviously, there was a drunken fight here or there but nothing serious. At first, I thought I wanted a modern wedding with a neutral color palette. We checked out museums, chic hotels but nothing seemed right. I was getting frustrated so my mom and I decided go wedding dress shopping and (channeling Carrie Bradshaw from SATC here) the dress upped the ante. It was the second one I tried on. It was off white, fringed and kind of fabulous. Totally changed the vibe of the wedding to a festival theme. Enter: #SMITHCHELLA. The girls at the dress shop introduced me to Ciara Self, the owner of Bash Co. Events. She became my planner and my friend. Trust me, unless you are an interior designer, you need a wedding planner. Flowers can be expensive, so be prepared. Another thing, the buddy system, we sourced some vendors from our network of friends. All these guys and their “people” were professional but when working with friends, make sure to have something in writing or a contract. It will protect your friendship. Overall, wedding planning is fun, creative and expensive. Be sure to chat with your folks about a realistic budget. I almost forgot, invitations. I used vintage stamps. The pro to vintage stamps is that they’re gorgeous. The con is that they have to be hand sorted by USPS and take a lot longer to hit the mailbox. Some people say they still haven’t received our invite and we got married two months ago.


wedding decor1

wedding invitations


The worst thing that happened:

I hate to say this, but my mom. She was way too drunk. We didn’t speak for weeks after the wedding due to her behavior. My fake eyelashes were a little heavy. If you’re like me and get annoyed when uncomfortable, break in your wedding shoes. We took several dance lessons leading up to the wedding and the first dance got too complicated. Spins, twirls, dips. Our instructor called it “country swing”. I am lucky I didn’t bust my ass in front of 200 guests. So my advice: keep the first dance simple.

The most magical thing that happened:

Ricky. I could say all the gorgeous flowers and my dress, but he was the best part. He helped with any anxiety that started creeping up during the reception. We would sneak away to the bridal suite and just have a moment to breathe. During the wedding, you are being pulled in like 800 different directions. Having a conversation with 200 plus people, some which you may barely know is tiring. Trust me, after being the bride and groom, you’re too tired for sex on the wedding night. Don’t judge y’all’s relationship on that part. You have a lot of time together to have sex.

 s&r first wedding dance


And life now:

I quit my job about a week before the wedding. I was going to anyways, and I needed to focus on zen leading up to the big day (my job was emotionally demanding). I packed up my cute apartment in Sherman, TX and moved to Fort Worth, TX and into Ricky’s three bedroom and two bathroom rent home. When the rent went up at that house, we downsized. Downsizing is hard. You are forced to get rid of so much stuff, things you love, but I believe in fresh starts. We are now in a cute one bedroom and one bathroom apartment. I am not an expert on marriage. I love my husband. I love my boxer, Scout. I am happy. Ricky wants a baby now, but I feel like we have some bucket list items to check off.

as told by Sara Smith

s&r wedding ceremony


Event Planner: @bashcoevents
Photography: @peytonrbyford
Videography: @peytonfrank
Florist: @venusandcoflowers
Venue: @prospecthouseatx
Event Rentals: @birchandbrassrentals
Cake: @feathersandfrostingatx
Catering: @gradyspears
Dress: @ruedeseinebridal
Dress Shop: @aandbe_bridalshop
Hair: @stylingbymacey
Makeup: @babeautytx
Invitations: @allikdesign
Entertainment: @randyrogersband
Accessories: @tillythomaslux

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