A Perfect Pair
Chapman, 29, and Long, 30, met just over two years ago on a dating app while they were both living in New York.
“We were both looking for a special connection we didn’t think we could find in a bar,” Chapman tells PEOPLE. “Pretty early on in the relationship we each knew that we had found the person we wanted to be with.”
“We didn’t have a specific timeline, we just did what felt natural,” she adds. “We also had a longer engagement, 16 months, which felt right for us.”
For the big day, Chapman wore an Ines Di Santo gown and cathedral-length lace Toni Federici veil from The Bride Room Nashville.
Chapman says that her only “bridezilla moment” came while picking out her dress.
“I had actually decided on another dress that was beautiful but not quite it,” she says. “Then right before we got in the car to head to the bridal shop so I could get measured and send in the order, someone described a tiny part of the dress in front of Ben. Which, of course, in my mind meant the whole thing was ruined and he’d basically been given a photo of it.”
“This was probably my only bridezilla moment,” she continues. “I was so upset I didn’t even want to put the dress on when we got there, so my mom said, ‘Then let’s just try another one.’ I put on the new dress and the rest is history.”
All in the Details
Chapman’s wedding jewelry is pictured sitting atop her invitations, which were custom designed by Nico and Lala.
The cotton paper invitation was stamped in gold foil and featured a pomegranate colored border to match the bridesmaids’ dresses and other wedding accents.
For the wedding rings, Chapman says she and Long picked them out together.
“My engagement ring and wedding band are both from the Vera Wang Love Collection,” she says. “Ben saw them first and loved how they both have a little sapphire under the main diamond.”
Long’s ring, on the other hand, is black titanium with an onyx blue stripe in the middle.
“It looked a bit like a super hero ring,” Chapman says. “Which was perfect for him.”
Grant, 58, prepped her daughter to walk down the aisle by helping with her gown and veil.
“It is hard to believe that same 6-week-old girl who inspired the lyrics to ‘Baby Baby’ is now a beautiful married woman,” Grant tells PEOPLE. “Her life has given us a lot of reasons to dance and celebrate through the years!”
Exchanging "I Dos"
Chapman and Long exchanged vows at Immanuel Baptist Church in Nashville.
“Ben cried, but we always knew he was going to,” Chapman says. “I think he cried before the doors even opened.”
“As I got closer, his face just sort of melted,” she continues. “I, on the other hand, was so focused on not crying while walking down the aisle, I looked very serious. In reality I was just putting up every emotional wall in my arsenal.”
Chapman’s father, Grant’s first husband Gary Chapman, responded to the question “Who presents this bride?” with the words “We all do!”
“He captured the joy and healing of our big blended family,” says Grant, who married country singer Vince Gill in 2000.
Through Thick and Thin
Chapman was all smiles with her bridesmaids (from left to right): friend Kathryn Dudley, sister Corrina Gill, sister Sarah Chapman and cousin Sally Harrell.
In 2017, Dudley received one of Chapman’s kidneys in a transplant and is now in “great” health.
“We joke that she got my good kidney,” Chapman says. “The only thing I had to do was stop drinking sugar free Red Bull, something I used to love and she woke up craving after the transplant surgery.”
Chapman poses with her blended family (from left to right): brother Matt Chapman, sister Sarah Chapman, father Gary Chapman, Gary’s wife Cassie Chapman, Gary and Cassie’s daughter Eva Rose Chapman, Grant, Gill, Grant and Gill’s daughter Corrina Gill, and Jenny Gill (Gill’s daughter from his previous marriage to ex-wife Janis Oliver).
Chapman’s sisters Sarah and Corrina served as her maids of honor.
Chapman’s bouquet and all the florals for the wedding and reception had a personal touch as they were done by Mayfield Events and Design’s Phyllis Mayfield, who has been Chapman and her siblings’ nanny since Chapman was born.
Prior to the ceremony, Chapman shared a joyful toast with her bridesmaids and her mother on the front porch of her family’s home in Nashville, where Grant and Gill reside.
For the reception, Chapman chose to hold it in Grant and Gill’s backyard since it is a place she has always felt “comfortable.”
“Neither Ben nor I love crowds and it was going to be a fairly large wedding, so we wanted to celebrate it somewhere we felt at home,” she says.
When it came to the décor, Chapman says she only had two rules: “No pastels and no monograms.”
As Grant and Gill welcomed the crowd of 230 family and friends to their backyard, Gill said, “We didn’t do things perfectly…or everything just right, but we’re all here now to celebrate this beautiful couple.”
At one point, Grant and Gill toasted to the newlyweds in front of a gold “Oh Happy Day” sign that was custom designed by Nico and Lala as a surprise from Grant to Chapman and gave a clue to another surprise that was revealed at the end of the evening.
In keeping with the Grant-Gill family tradition that was established at Jenny Gill’s wedding in 2010, The Settle Connection Gospel Choir surprised the newlyweds at their exit by singing an acapella version of “Oh Happy Day.” Grant and Corrina joined in the singing and celebration.
The First Dance
Chapman’s sister Corrina serenaded her and Long with a rendition of “Stand By Me” for their first dance as a married couple.
Then came the live band, Az IzZ who “did an amazing job of getting our guests on the dance floor,” says Chapman.
“We are not usually big dancers, but the band’s energy was amazing,” she says. “I’ve never seen so many people on a dance floor so fast and it stayed full until the last song ended.”
Grant told guests that Chapman was a picky eater as a child — so dinner was a nod to her childhood favorites.
Kristen Winston Catering incorporated family recipes liked mini BLTs, pulled pork on griddle corn cakes and mini grilled cheese. Dinner included filet of beef, lemon herb chicken breast and ricotta stuffed ravioli
Late night snacks were also served to guests like mini Oreo milkshakes, sliders and mini chicken and waffles.
The Wedding Cake
The cake, created by Leland Riggan of Dessert Designs, featured two of the couple’s favorite flavors: sour cream pound cake and chocolate truffle.
Slice of Heaven
Chapman and Long cut the cake, which was aptly dubbed “Hallelujah Cake.”
After the wedding, the couple opted for a different slice of Heaven by picking St. Lucia as their honeymoon destination.
“Apart from wanting something tropical, I just wanted a good book and a swim up bar,” Chapman says. “Ben wanted a place that didn’t feel too crowded where he could just relax.”