In July, 2008, Nicholas Tinsley Elkins received a “wink” through Match.com from Keli Brett Wallace. Keli reports that though she made the first move, Nick responded by pulling out all the stops: asking her to dance the night they first met, surprising her with a sunset drive across the District of Columbia on their first date and generally making her swoon. Less than a year later, Nick proposed on a moonlit night aboard the Star Ferry in Hong Kong.

As soon as the couple returned from their trip they began making wedding plans with Keli’s parents, Dan and Christy Wallace of Oklahoma City. Christy’s interior design experience came in handy as she and Keli planned the couple’s dream wedding. Nick and Keli had fallen in love with the Virginia countryside and the relaxed Charlottesville scene over several visits to Nick’s older sister Kathryn McLeod, who lives in the area with her family.

On Friday, June 25, 2010, Gary and Kate Elkins of New Orleans hosted a rehearsal dinner for the happy couple at Keswick Hall at Monticello in Keswick, Va. A classical guitarist serenaded guests during an outdoor cocktail hour overlooking the majestic Keswick golf course. A family-style dinner featuring upscale American classics followed in the elegant dining room.

The following night the wedding took place on the ground of the beautiful Clifton Inn. The Reverend Dr. Donald R. Frampton of St. Charles Avenue Presbyterian Church officiated. Before the ceremony, guests were greeted with drinks, including the groom’s favorite: Abita Strawberry Harvest Lager.

Escorted by her father, Keli walked down the aisle in a modified A-line, V-neck gown of ivory French tulle by Vera Wang, featuring a chapel-length train and feathered tulle detailing around the skirt. She carried a bouquet of balsa wood flowers and dusty miller tied with the wedding bands of her late grandparents, Gordon and Thelma Hale.

Nick waited at the end of the aisle wearing a charcoal gray, three-button suit from Brooks Brothers with a custom pale-blue-and-white-striped tie designed by a friend of his family’s, Aimee Sedky. He wore a boutonniere that matched Keli’s bouquet.

Keli’s bridesmaids wore a variety of full-length chiffon dresses in shades of blue and gray by Amsale. They carried wild bouquets of oak leaves, hydrangeas, dinner plate dahlias, garden roses and dusty miller in muted champagne, blush, lavender and gray. Abby Holahan and Lauren Corbyn served as bridesmaid and matron of honor respectively. The groomsmen wore classic blue seersucker suits from Jos. A. Banks with custom grey ties also designed by Aimee Sedky. Geoff Elkins, Nick’s younger brother, stood as best man and wore the same ensemble as the groom. The groomsmen wore a mix of burlap wrapped boutonnieres featuring scabiosa pods and other small blooms.

Keli’s mother, Christy, worked intimately with Pat Roberts and Sherry Spencer of Pat’s Floral Designs in Madison, Va., to design all of the floral arrangements for the ceremony and reception. Keli and Nick married beneath a custom-built branch archway filled with white dendrobium orchids. The aisles were lined with lush white rose petals.

The String Poets, a quartet, played a mix of classical and modern pop-rock music during the ceremony. The bride proceeded to the same song both her mother and Nick’s had selected for the bridal processional in their own weddings: Clarke’s “Trumpet Voluntary.” Liz Elkins, Nick’s younger sister, sang “The Book of Love” during the service. In honor of Keli’s Scottish roots, a bagpiper played the couple out of the ceremony then led guests from the wedding location to the cocktail hour – a different spin on a second-line.

Guests were greeted at the cocktail hour with Virginia Fizz, a French-style sparkling wine produced in Charlottesville by Thibaut-Jannison Winery. Because of the location, Keli and Nick wanted to showcase local vintages during their celebration; all of the wines served at the reception were grown and produced within a 45-minute drive of the Clinton Inn. The Inn prepared all of the food for the reception.

Wanting to make a subtle nod to their introduction through Match.com, the couple used long fireplace matches to create escort “flags” displayed  and a sign on the table read, “We found our match, now find yours.”

Commemorative matches bearing the couples’ names and wedding date also were on display.

Heartbeat of Soul entertained guests at the reception with a mix of Motown and Top 40 music. Keli and Nick’s first dance was to “More Today than Yesterday” by Spiral Staircase. Two family friends of the bride, Lee Reynolds and Gary Thompson, both of Oklahoma City, performed “Take Good Care of My Baby,” with the band for the father-daughter dance. The wedding photographer was Katie Stoops of Katie Stoops Photography in Harrisonburg, Va.
Near the reception’s conclusion, guests were surprised by the arrival of Carpe Donut, a local organic food truck serving fresh hot donuts and iced coffee. Family and friends continued the celebration at a casual gathering by the Inn’s pool. After the wedding, Keli and Nick took a romantic honeymoon trip to the Greek islands of Mykonos and Santorini.

The couple currently lives in Washington, D.C. where Keli serves as director of special projects at the American Gaming Association and Nick is a manager with Deloitte Consulting, LLC.