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All-star wedding ceremony inspiration from Damian Lillard & Kay’la Hanson

Published Thursday, Sep. 9th, 2021

NBA All-Star Damian Lillard & Kay’la Hanson pose in their wedding attire outdoors in celebration of their marriage. Damian wears a dark suit with a white shirt and bowtie, Kay'la wears a white wedding dress and holds a bouquet of white flowers
Cover image: Kay'la Hanson and Damian Lillard pose on their wedding day, via @ damianlillard , photo cropped from original.

NBA All-Star Damian Lillard & Kay’la Hanson were married in an extravagant Instagram-worthy wedding this weekend -- pulling out all the stops and filling their guest list with Lillard’s Portland Trail Blazers teammates and other high-profile celebrities. 


It makes sense that Lillard and Hanson wanted to go big… In addition to their long-awaited nuptials, the pair have plenty to celebrate! 


Lillard helped Team USA win Gold in the 2020 Summer Olympics, and just dropped a new album (Different On Levels The Lord Allowed, under the name Dame D.O.L.L.A.). Hanson’s small business, a nail salon in Portland, is thriving. And the couple just welcomed new baby twins into their family… Looks like their spectacular wedding is just icing on the cake!




5 ways to capture the all-star vibe  


You probably won’t be able to book Snoop for your reception, but there’s no reason not to create your own high-glam wedding with inspiration from Lillard and Hanson. 


1. Star-studded guest list


Lillard and Hanson’s guest list was a jaw-dropping roster of top-tier players and music icons. Draymond Green, CJ McCollum, Bradley Beal, Jusuf Nurkić, Evan Turner, Tim Frazier, DeMar DeRozan, Blxst, Snoop, Common, and Campbell… The list goes on and on! (via NBCSports and New York Post). 


Celebrity status aside, these are teammates and friends who really matter to the couple and who know how to help them have a good time. Build your own guest list with this same ‘star-studded’ approach : Invite friends and family that make you feel loved,  make you laugh, and who always have your back. Let love -- not obligation -- be your guide to a perfect guest list.


2. Outdoor ceremony 


This gorgeous ceremony  was held outdoors in sunny Santa Barbara, giving everyone the perfect opportunity to pull on their most fashionable shades, off-the-shoulder formals, and brightly colored suits. 


We love that open-air ceremonies are more popular than ever, because in addition to being safer than indoor spaces during the pandemic, no venue outshines the great outdoors. 


Whether you’re planning a ceremony in the backyard or city park, glam things up with twinkle lights, colorful seating, vibrant flower arrangements, and a romantic start time (think sunrise, sunset, or a moonlit ceremony). Outdoor weddings even work in cold weather, with faux-fur and vintage outwear to dress things up. 


3. Live music


Snoop Dogg, Common, and Tevin Campbell?! Wow… talk about a memorable, very danceable, lineup! 


Luckily, it doesn’t take a famous rapper or rockstar to make your reception memorable. Any live music will give the occasion a high-energy vibe. So book a local band or find an experienced DJ, and get your guests out of their seats and onto the dance floor. 


4. Custom hashtag


In the days leading up to the wedding, Hanson shared several photos with the hashtag #ItsAboutDameTime. Cute, right? (via NBCSports)


Create a custom hashtag with your sweetheart and use it to tag your photos, tweets, and videos leading up to the event to have friends and family follow along in the planning process. Then keep on tagging -- ceremony outtakes, reception dance-off videos, and even romantic honeymoon photos!


5. Live Tweeting Your Love


In a move that caused fans a lot of amusement, Lillard somehow found time to tweet during his wedding -- retweeting posts about his album and even commenting on the Nets’ Kevin Durant. (via The Fumble) This might seem like an unusual choice for a groom, but Lillard didn’t get it all wrong...


Live tweeting about your wedding day can be a fun and creative way to get out-of-town family and friends involved in the excitement. Livestreaming updates on Instagram or Facebook, to give your personal ‘fan-club’ a peek behind the scenes while you prepare, is also a popular choice!




We know what you might be thinking...
This was a pretty big wedding for a pandemic, right? 


It’s true, large weddings like this one aren’t happening as frequently right now, for obvious reasons… No one wants their celebration to become a superspreader event! 


Small weddings and elopements, especially when held outside, are still the safest choice. But with COVID vaccines and testing more readily available, and recent CDC updates to help couples and their guests make informed and responsible choices, medium to large scale weddings can be planned more safely than in months past. 


Read Planning a COVID Wedding: Our Most Popular Articles & Advice, All in One Place, or browse our Wedding-and-Ceremony-Planning tag for more articles on planning an original ceremony. 



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Jessica Levey
Jessica Levey

Lead Staff Writer & Illustrator

Jessica loves exploring the history and magic of ritual, the connections between people and places, and sharing true stories about love and commitment. She's an advocate for marriage equality, LGBTQ+ rights, and individuality, and is an ordained Minister with AMM. When she’s not writing or illustrating for AMM, she enjoys city hikes, fantasy novels, comics, and traveling.

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