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This Bride Wore Carolina Herrera and Alexia Maria to Her Wedding With Southern Flair at The Breakers

By Shayna Seid | Photography by 

Jacqui Cole

|Planning by 

Posh Parties

Kaelin Mae Campbell and Russel Morse Smith met in their sophomore Spanish class at The College of Charleston. “We were both terrible at Spanish and leaned on one another for support before tests,” she admits.

After five years together, Russel proposed to Kaelin during Labor Day Weekend at her family’s beach house in Quogue, New York. While they were getting ready to go to dinner with both of their families one evening, Russel came up to Kaelin and said, “I want my brother to leave; he’s bothering everyone. Let’s go walk on the beach and book him a jitney.” Kaelin was shocked and confused, since Russel’s brother has met her family and this had never been an issue. Once on the sand, Russel got down on one knee. After saying, “Yes!” their families cheered on the happy couple from the deck.

It has always been a dream for the bride-to-be to walk down the aisle at The Breakers. “I have been going to the hotel since I was a child and would always peek into the ballrooms whenever a wedding was happening,” she reveals. “I am originally from Connecticut but truly a turned southerner now; therefore, we knew we wanted hints of ‘southern charm.’ However, anyone who knows me, knows blue and white is my thing; the colors are timeless, classy, and elegant.”

The couple originally planned for a December 2020 wedding, but it was postponed by a year due to Covid. Heather Lowenthal of Posh Parties rolled with the punches and organized a truly amazing affair. And Bella Figura got everyone excited with a beautiful invitation suite. In 2021, the wedding weekend finally kicked off with a Palm Beach-themed welcome party on the Ocean Lawn with floral pink flamingos.

Kaelin found her wedding dress the weekend of their engagement party at the now-closed Betty Bridal in Charleston. “I made an appointment as a fun activity to do with my mom and sisters,” she shares. The second gown she tried on brought tears to her eyes, and she knew she had found “the one.” Her dress was a strapless Carolina Herrera design with a bow in the back and detachable train, which she paired with a matching veil. “I opted to bustle the entire train because I felt like it gave the dress a more dramatic look.”

On the day-of, the bride got ready with makeup artist and hair stylist Gina Simone, who made Kaelin’s skin look like porcelain and gave her a sleek updo. To complete her bridal ensemble, Kaelin also wore her mother’s diamond and sapphire tennis necklace and matching bracelets, her sister’s sapphire and diamond ring, and Aquazzura heels.

Bridesmaids complemented Kaelin well in navy gowns from Amsale, while Russel and the groomsmen put on custom tuxedos from Jos. A. Bank.

On December 18, 2021, the doors of the ballroom opened and Kaelin was awestruck by the flowers and then locked eyes with her groom, who was shedding a few tears. The two exchanged heartfelt vows with not a dry eye in the house. “When we were pronounced husband and wife, I was floating!” she remembers.

In the reception space, florist Renny & Reed blew everyone away with towering magnolia trees. “It was wild—true Southern flair,” Kaelin says. The couple made their entrance and went into their first dance on their custom dance floor, as “At Last” played. “It was fitting for us, since we had waited so long for this weekend.”

For the father-daughter dance, Kaelin’s father decided 10-minutes prior that they were going to sing Frank Sinatra’s “The Way You Look Tonight.” They had a blast twirling and belting the lyrics, followed by the mother-son dance to “Stand By Me.”

Shortly after that, Kaelin changed into Alexia Maria’s Isabella silk and wool minidress and got the party started. The newlyweds were constantly on the stage with their terrific band from EastCoast Entertainment, until it transitioned into the after-party with a deejay and mini pizzas and chicken sandwiches. Kaelin concludes, “As cliché as it sounds, we danced the night away!”