Approximately 32 seconds into Heidi and Coy’s wedding video by Take Heart Films, we knew it was going to be special. (The way Coy looks at Heidi as she steps out of their vintage red pickup truck…I mean. 😭) We interviewed Heidi to learn more about how she met Coy, their wedding planning process, and the story behind her custom gown. Heidi worked with Anomalie to design her dream wedding dress, and as you can see, the final look is perfection. Read on to find out what it’s really like to bring your ~dream~ wedding dress to life.
How did you meet and fall in love?
Coy’s ex-girlfriend introduced us. 🙂 I went to college with her and we were acquaintances. We always kept in touch on social media and years later, she asked if she could set me up with someone. That someone was Coy. At the time, I lived in San Francisco and he lived in Los Angeles. He called to ask me on a date, not knowing I lived in SF. We ended up talking and texting for five weeks until I convinced him to come up to SF for a weekend to meet me. I met him for the first time at SFO, when I picked him up. The next two days were a whirlwind for us. We both say we fell in love with each other that weekend, although we wouldn’t have admitted it at the time. From that weekend forward, we flew back and forth to each other every 2-3 weekends for one-and-a-half years. They were the best adventures of our lives and we loved every minute we got to be together. I finally landed my dream job in LA and moved down in April. We were engaged six months later.
Tell us how the proposal happened.
When I first met Coy, I knew he was a talented photographer. (He films movies and TV shows for a living.) But I didn’t know how passionate he was about it until we went on our first road trip. He would pull over the car and suddenly disappear for ten minutes with his camera. Often times, I had no idea why or where he went until he returned to the car with the coolest shots I had ever seen. It happened so often that I started calling his camera his “mistress.” It became an ongoing joke that he would spend more time with his camera than me. I named his camera “Chantrelle” and she has been a fixture in our relationship ever since. She comes everywhere with us and Coy often disappears with her, only to return with beautiful photos.
In October of 2017, Coy was finishing up an out-of-town movie. He called and asked if I could take work off to spend a long weekend together in Palm Springs when he got back. We’ve always wanted to stay at the ACE hotel there and he said he found a good deal to go in November. I said yes. We drove out on a Friday morning and started exploring—with Chantrelle, of course! We love having no plans. We love to just drive and find gems along the way. We ended up at the Integratron for a sound bath that evening. The next day we woke up and explored Palm Springs, the hotel, and spent time driving and taking photos. Coy said he really wanted to take sunset photos at the windmill farm. So when it came time to drive out there, we changed clothes because we were going to head to dinner after.
I put on this dress and for the first time in our whole relationship, he told me he didn’t really like the dress. I didn’t think much of it because it was a pretty hippie-style dress and he’s a little more buttoned-up. 🙂 So I changed into a different dress. We drove out to the windmills and he ran off with Chantrelle. He decided to set up a shot and told me to walk out in front of the camera. I did. And then he said, hold on, and started walking out toward me. That’s when he got on one knee and proposed. He proposed and we didn’t tell a soul. We spent the night at dinner with just the two of us knowing. There were fireworks downtown for a holiday and it was the perfect night! We told our families and friends later when we got back to the hotel. Turns out, he knew he was going to have Chantrelle take pictures and the first dress I was wearing was really baggy (aka not flattering in photos) and he knew I would hate it. So that’s why he had to tell me he didn’t like it, haha!
Where did you get your engagement ring?
I’ve always worn a lot of jewelry, especially rings. Coy really wanted to get me a diamond (I was thinking about other stones) and so we wanted to make the ring blend with all my other jewelry as well. He had the ring made by our family jeweler and chose a simple solitaire. From there he said I could design bands, add, change, etc., as it fit my style. The wedding band is custom-made from a jeweler we both love on Instagram. It fits me perfectly!
Tell us about something that was creative or unique to your wedding.
We had so many special things that we tried to incorporate into the wedding day, but we were having trouble picking that perfect song for me to walk down the aisle to. We decided to ask my brother and Coy’s brother to help us out. They are TV and movie composers and we thought that they could write something together that was better than any song we could dream up. And it was true! They worked together to collaborate on the song that I walked down the aisle to. Of course I sobbed the whole way.
For a wedding favor, my parents created a BBQ and wok sauce recipe when they were first married to give as holiday gifts to their friends. It’s a recipe my family has made every year and Coy joined in helping with the tradition when we started dating. My family makes more than 250 bottles every year, so it’s quite the production! We decided to bring that California tradition to Texas and give away travel size bottles of that sauce to our wedding guests! We created custom bottle labels that matched the theme and logos of our wedding.
Instead of a guest book, we decided to have guests give us ideas for experiences to have over the course of our lives. We created custom cards that included our logo and Coy’s mother painted the “Live List” box for us. We asked guests to fill out date ideas, places to travel, advice, things to do or anything they enjoyed in their own life that they wanted to pass on to ours! It’s been fun reading through all of the ideas. We have a lot to accomplish in this life!
Describe the moment from your wedding day that stands out to you the most.
I obviously loved walking down the aisle with my dad and seeing Coy. But I think my favorite moment was when our guests had all moved into the reception area. We had wrapped up photos and were outside of the venue. We had a few minutes to just be together. Then as we were introduced, we walked in and Coy could see the cake table and he realized that I had “Chantrelle” made into a groom’s cake as a surprise. We went right into our first dance and couldn’t stop laughing about Chantrelle, but also crying because it was our first dance.
Your dress is stunning! How did you find it?
I had my wedding dress made by Anomalie! I had been following the company since it started and knew I wanted to design my dress with them. I’ve been in love with a Rue de Seine dress for years and another Sarah Seven dress. Both of which, I wanted to mold into my perfect dress. I knew with Anomalie that I could do that. So I took the top of one dress and the bottom of another and designed it! Anomalie made it come to life.
Once you had your dream dress in mind, what was the process of designing it with Anomalie like from start to finish?
I had an intro call with Anomalie to discuss with my stylist what I was thinking. I described the mood I was going for with the dress and the elements that I really wanted. I wanted the beading detail to feel ethereal. I also knew I wanted a matte looking fabric that could be fitted and flattering. I was on a rush schedule because my engagement was six months long and they wanted to get the dress to me at least a month before the wedding. So, we had to get to designing pretty quickly! They sent me a sketch of what it would look like and fabric samples. I approved it and then they sent it to production! After that, I received updates every couple of weeks on the progress. The dress was first made in a different fabric, as a model to see if it’s exactly what I wanted. There were some adjustments with measurements that needed to be made. The team also designed the pattern of the beading that I wanted and sent me samples of the beads. We worked together to adjust the pattern of the beads and make sure it had the feel I was going for. From there it was go-time! They made the dress in the fabric I had chosen and then beaded the flutter neckline. I got photo updates along the way and gave them feedback. Then they shipped me the dress. I received it a month before my wedding and I had enough time to get alterations done. After that, it was done!
Who would you recommend Anomalie to?
I would tell brides who know exactly what they want to go straight to Anomalie. Don’t waste your time trying to find that perfect dress if you already have a vision for it. It’s hard to find what you’re looking for in stores. Something was always a little off for me in the stores (back too low, weird neckline, not the shape I wanted), which is why I knew I would probably need to design my own dress. There were details I didn’t anticipate having an opinion on (i.e. seam placement, buttons down the back or not, etc.), but their stylists helped me make those decisions!
What made your wedding feel extra special to you and your partner?
We made sure it was very “us.” Throughout the whole planning process, Coy made sure to point out that no one remembers the flowers or the colors of our napkins. They only remember the people there and how they felt. So that’s what we focused on. Everything at the wedding had meaning. Our invitations were painted and designed by his mom and sisters. The signs at the venue were painted by his sisters and were quotes that Coy and I used to live by. My best friend’s husband married us and we incorporated wording from both of our different religions. Coy’s ring is his great grandfather’s, passed down, etc.
How did you find your filmmaker Take Heart Films and what made you choose them?
Coy is a cinematographer, so the photography and videography at our wedding was the most important thing to him! He has a high standard. We spent a lot of time scrolling through wedding websites, linking to others, and getting referrals. We found Take Heart Films through one of the sites. Her videos felt authentic, real, and not staged. We wanted nothing to be staged and we wanted the real, raw moments to be captured. We wanted the feeling of the day to be conveyed. She does that in her videos. We felt that when we watched them, which is exactly what we wanted for ours.
What is your favorite moment from your wedding film?
There’s a moment toward the end where he wraps me up in his arm and pulls me into him, kissing me on my forehead. It’s my favorite part because he does that all the time to me, and I always love it! I also can’t get enough of the dancing. It was the best dance party, so I love looking back on that.
What do you think the “secret sauce” to your relationship is?
The night before our wedding, at our rehearsal dinner, I cried through my speech about how Coy and I have consistently expressed our gratitude for one another. From day one, we have always said, “I love you. I’m grateful for you.” I think that’s our secret sauce—expressing gratitude to each other. Even through our disagreements, we say, “I’m grateful for you.” It dissolves any tension and reminds us both that not only are we in love, but we truly appreciate the other person and who they are. After our rehearsal dinner, Coy’s sister said she was impressed by my speech and created a sign the next morning for the wedding! It read “I love you. I’m grateful for you.” It was so special.
What are your fave ways to spend a weekend together?
We take any opportunity we have to hit the road and drive. We love a good road trip and exploration day. Sometimes it’s close; to a beach we’ve never been to, or a hike we’ve never been on. Or sometimes we make a trek to another city we’ve never been to that’s hours away. We love meeting new people. So we stop in coffee shops, mom-and-pop shops, bakeries and meet whoever we can, learning about life outside of our own.
If you were to guess, how do you think you’ll celebrate your one-year anniversary?
Coy and I give each other experiences instead of gifts. So whatever it is that we’re doing, I know we’ll be on an adventure, in our own little world, having fun.