Wedding Story: Mr. & Mrs. Dowdell


We had a good ‘ole time reading this wonderful wedding story! On behalf of NHB we wish you a long lasting joyful marriage! Here’s Mr. & Mrs. Dowdell deets:


Word of advice for the newly engaged on preparation for their wedding day:
When Lucien and I first embarked on our planning journey, we made a list of priorities.
We made this list so we could refer to it whenever we were up against a wedding
decision and if it conflicted with our list, it was out. Our first priority was keep it Christ
centered then a close second is NO stress. We originally wanted our wedding to be
outdoors at a new nearby park but it was so new, it didn’t have a name so we weren’t
sure who to contact regarding rentals. We also were engaged for a year and 3 months
so planning an outdoor even that far out and we didn’t want to rent tents or anything
started to lead to a stressful combo so we nixed that plan all together.


Most unforgettable moments of your wedding day:
Dancing at our reception! I love music and I love hanging with family and friends so the
idea of partying with the people we love most, really made my heart full. It didn’t hurt
that I got to marry my best friend earlier that day.

Wedding Details: Share with us the setup – Location: Theme
My husband is a musician and audio engineer and like I said, I LOVE music but am terrible when it comes to wedding related stuff, we didn’t really have a theme per say but I guess it was music.

Since we nixed the outdoor plan, we decided the next most cost effective and
convenient place was our church. We kept the ceremony short but special. The bridal
party danced down the isle to Pancho Sanchez “Bodacious Q”, I came down the isle to
Norah Jones “The Nearness of You” and we recessed to Ray Charles “Hallelujah I Love
You So”



We had the reception at a restaurant called Evviva right outside of Philadelphia and its
basically a converted Victorian mansion with their own garden for centerpieces!

Wedding Date: September 25, 2009
Wedding Color: Fall jewel tones—green, purple, teal and orange
Bridesmaid Count: 3
Bridal gown style:Ha! I barely paid attention to wedding styles when I was actually planning my wedding  let alone now LOL. I like big and poofy because while yes I can have a sleek and sexy dress, how often is it socially acceptable to wear a princess gown so that’s sort of what I went for.


How did you meet?

Welllllll, I hope you don’t mind convoluted, drawn out stories lol. It all started when my mom (Gail) and Lucien’s mom (Shelley) went to high school together and shared a mutual best friend (Judi) who later became my aunt when my mom married her brother
Then my dad and Lucien’s dad (Luther) were in a band in together in the 80s then we moved away because my dad was active duty in the Army. Fast forward to 2000 and we moved back to the east coast after being gone for almost 10 years. Now my dad, Luther and Lucien were in a band together and despite Lucien being closer in age to me, he and my dad did all the hanging out and we only exchanged about 10 words from 2000-2005 and did I mention he had a girlfriend at the time? It was my senior year in high school and my prom was coming up and I didn’t want to go but my parents promised I would regret it for the rest of my life so (side eye) so I decided to go even though I really didn’t care. I had a date lined up and he fell through later so my dad said he would ask Lucien. It was so crazy that I figured Lucien would say no (he was in college at this point with a girlfriend) and I would officially be off the hook and not have to go! Boy was I wrong. Lucien’s girlfriend thought it would be fun and I was sorta pissed because my plan backfired and now I had to find a dress lol. Long story short, I had more fun with him than I think I would’ve had with my original date and after Lucien and his girlfriend broke up we began dating a while later. So here we are, 7 years in (3 dating/engaged and almost 4 married), expecting our first child and we couldn’t be happier!


Describe your hairstyle on your wedding day: Where did you get the style

Oh man, I so wish Natural Hair Bride or any other natural hair resource was around back
then because when I tell I searched HIGH and LOW to find an inkling of hair ideas, I
came up mad empty handed. It’s crazy to think about that as recently as 4 years ago, all
these blogs, vlogs, etc. just simply didn’t exist or they were so under the radar, I couldn’t
find them. When I googled “natural wedding styles” “natural styles” or anything like
that, my choices were braids (which make me look like I’m doing 5-15 on cell block D),
some kind of other weave/extension style (which I didn’t wear ever) or a straightened
So I was on my own. Since we were going to Jamaica for our honeymoon, I knew I
needed something lasting but nice so I decided to get a rod set. Then it hit me, why not
get a two strand twist then set those?? My hair dr esser (shoutout to Brownstone
Natural Hair Salon) caught the vision and hooked it up.

She did a small section of flat twist in the front corner then the rest of my head were
individuals that she later put on rods and I sat under the dryer like a regular rod set. I
liked this style because I wanted to wear my hair out for the big day since I was wearing
a birdcage veil and wanted some kind of length. It really worked out great for our
honeymoon and beyond because I could touch up the curls or continue to let them fall
and I could rock a ponytail for styling versatility. I loved it and boy did it last!


What style would you rock to renew your vows?

I’m a creature of habit so I would probably do the same thing again lol. If not, I would be
interested in some kind of side updo/pompadour style.

How long have you been natural? Hair Care Regimen?I have been natural my whole life except for one time when I was about 10 and I got the Rio “perm” that caused ALL of my hair to fall out on the first application. Then again for a about a year in high school and it was so annoying that I just stopped getting them. Big chopping and things like that didn’t have the buzz (no pun intended) that they do now and it never dawned on me to cut off my hair just to get rid of the perm so I just let it grow until it was gone.

As far as a regimen, I live the life of a bald woman despite the fact that my hair is near
the middle of my back when it’s straightened. I’m not really sure because I don’t pay
attention lol. Even though I’ve been natural for this long, I am constantly discovering my
hair and all the natural hair YouTubers are really helping me in my journey.

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