Tiana & Brandon
Sept. 4, 2010 at a private residence in Tualatin
In 2001, Brandon Roy and Tiana Bardwell were walking the halls of Garfield High School in Seattle together. Tiana was 14; Brandon was 16. And Destiny’s Child’s “Dangerously in Love” from the mega-album Survivor was playing on the radio.
Nearly 10 years later, Brandon and Tiana’s love for each other has more than survived. And “Dangerously in Love” is still playing on the radio. Tiana, decked out in a vibrant red dress that showed off her long legs, and Brandon—NBA All-Star, one-time Rookie of the Year, and the Portland Trail Blazers’ team co-captain—classy as ever in all black, danced to the song for their first dance as newlyweds. “It was more about us just having fun,” Tiana reminisces. “And we were dancing the way we used to in high school!”
The reception was a jovial, relaxed affair, not unlike the wedding ceremony itself. With a guest list of 200 friends and family—fairly minimal considering all of Portland and half of the NBA probably would have liked to be there—the private event was held at a private residence. Just as the very private couple wanted it. Even though he is a celebrity athlete, “Brandon doesn’t like to be in the limelight,” Tiana notes. Which is clear from his silent leadership on the court and his rare comments about his home life.
Tiana, similarly, is almost matter-of-fact about the big day. The “bling” (the theme of their wedding) came through in their smiles, their laughter, their energy, their sincerity. There were flashes of actual bling, of course. But it came in the form of the understated elegance of a dual-toned theme (“We had always said we wanted a classic black-and-white wedding”), accented by red (“Brandon likes red”), and a few diamonds thrown in (“I like sparkle”).
The groom and best man strutted in all black, Brandon with a single red rose on his lapel. The couple’s son BJ, 3 ½ at the time, was the ring bearer, while 1 ½-year-old daughter Mariah, who was supposed to be a flower girl, instead was walked down the aisle “with her nanny and her blanket.” The bride wore a Rina Di Montella diamond-white strapless beaded bodice with mermaid skirt and long veil. She covered her shoulders with a delicate, jewel-flecked bolero and carried a bouquet of regal red roses tied with a white ribbon.
“The weather was perfect,” Taina says, although she admits the rainy day before made her nervous. “I kept asking if we had a tent on backup.” But there was no need. The sun came out and it was a warm but comfortable 70 degrees for their romantic outdoor ceremony.
The heat turned up after the couple said their I Do’s, as the cool black-and-white palette was punched up with hot scarlet. A red carpet led the wedding party and guests to the reception, where red flowers, red accents, red lights—even a candy buffet complete with Brandon’s favorite (yes, red) Swedish Fish—put everyone in the mood for celebration.
Afterward, the couple returned to their hotel, quiet and calm, where the two just sat and laughed and talked. Their kids stayed with family in Seattle while they enjoyed a peaceful honeymoon at home in Portland—almost like kids again, just like 10 years ago. But even after a decade, and especially after a wedding, some things don’t stay the same.
“We feel more complete,” Tiana says. “There are some people who say there’s no difference after you get married. But instantly there was a difference. And that was the final piece.”
Bridal gown: Silver Lining Bridal Boutique | Cake: Papa Haydn | Catering: Vibrant Table | Cupcakes: Saint Cupcake | Flowers and event design: Vibrant Table | Favors: Custom red candy buffet by RealTime Weddings, Seattle | Groom's attire: Mr. Formal | Hair and makeup: Reign Hair Concepts, Seattle | Hotel: The Grand Hotel at Bridgeport and The Century Hotel | Invitations: Oblation Papers & Press | Music: DJ Sky, Seattle | Planner: Phyllicia Majors, RealTime Weddings, Seattle | Rental: West Coast Event Productions | Rings: Blue Nile and Kassab Jewelers | Transportation: Lucky Limousine | Valet: Premiere Valet | Videographer: Obsidian Media, Seattle