A Bright Caribbean-Influenced Lowcountry Wedding at Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton, South Carolina

While vacationing with friends in the Virgin Islands, Lesley Grabias (35 and a special-events coordinator for the U.S. Capitol) met David Hail (42 and the director of sales and marketing for the Country Club of Fairfax) on a tropical golf course. The two instantly knew that they had found much more than just a good golf companion, and a long-distance relationship ensued. Lesley and David threw a Caribbean-inspired Lowcountry wedding at Palmetto Bluff in Bluffton, South Carolina, with pops of bright colors, tropical steel-drum music and an oyster roast. The ceremony, cocktail hour and reception all took place on the waterfront, and as a special tribute to her Irish heritage, Lesley carried on the family tradition of having an Irish blessing read before the vows were exchanged. Because of their shared ties to South Carolina and the Caribbean, the couple wanted to make sure their menu and aesthetic was reflective. The pair offered a build-your-own-biscuit bar, with Southern classics such as pulled pork, pimento cheese and coleslaw. Guests sipped on summery rum punches and Latin lemonades as they lounged in casual beach hammocks and Adirondack chairs. Lesley was an elegant beauty in a strapless trumpet-style Amsale dress with a dramatic bow-like detail in the back. “I envisioned a timeless and classic look for my wedding. I am not a fan of lace or beading on dresses,” she says. But her favorite part of her look was a custom-made diamond necklace that David had surprised her with on the morning of their big day. It included stones from all the important women in his life: his mother, grandmothers and aunts. Juliette Cheatham