Getting wedding inspiration? Nearly four months after Michelle Young and Nayte Olukoya‘s engagement aired, the duo have already begun thinking about their dream nuptials.
“Nayte and I, we know so many different people and we have such big families and that’s a huge part of [our planning process],” the Minnesota native, 28, exclusively told Us Weekly while attending the Sherri Hill NYFW Bridal and Evening Fashion Show on Friday, April 8. “And so coming out of a pandemic … one thing that we both can’t imagine is having a small wedding and so we want to make sure that we’re completely clear of that so that’s not even a stresser for us, and then, [we want to have] warm weather [on our wedding day].”
Young and the Canada native, 27, got engaged during the December 2021 finale of The Bachelorette season 18. As the pair have balanced their new normal as an engaged couple, they’ve also dealt with a long-distance relationship. (Young lives in Minneapolis, Minnesota, while her beau is based in Austin, Texas.)
“When we are together, we just spend time together like non-stop so it’s nice,” Olukoya gushed to Us on Friday when he and Young attended the fashion show in support of Hannah Godwin, who walked in the show.
The fifth grade teacher, for her part, added: “If we’re not hanging out, we’re texting [or] FaceTiming. We do a lot of movie nights like over FaceTime or Zoom. We’ve been making it work. But, he’s been in Minnesota for a little bit now so it’s been nice.”
Young, who previously appeared on season 25 of The Bachelor before becoming the franchise lead, noted that the pair mostly spends time together traveling — whether to New York for a fashion show or to Mexico for a romantic retreat.
“It was amazing. It was really weird at first because we kind of jumped back into those feelings that we had when we were on the show, you know, show anxiety,” the Bradley University grad told Us of their vacation last month, at the same hotel where they celebrated their engagement after filming. “But once we got over that, we really just had so much fun. I feel like we’re going to make it our annual vacation spot.”
While the pair are still learning each other’s quirks — such as Olukoya’s “therapeutic” love of doing laundry — and pet peeves, their loved ones are also getting to know one another.
“Our dogs are getting used to each other. It took a minute for them to kind of get used to [each other],” Young added. “[My dog] Chief wasn’t a fan of [his pup] Percy. Percy has a little too much energy I would say. But now they’re getting used [to each other] — now they actually bond and they cuddle and they play with each other so it’s been fun to see.”
Young and the sales executive had a strong attraction from the start of the ABC series, when he earned the coveted first impression rose.
“Nayte was always nearly, like, one of the strongest connections, if not the strongest connection,” she previously told Us in December 2021 after the finale aired. “And what I wanted to do is I really wanted to challenge myself to make sure that I was open to everybody because in a situation like The Bachelorette or The Bachelor, conversations can change a lot of different things because, you know, you have this short snippet and it seems like a short conversation, but [you’re] not talking small talk — you’re not talking about favorite colors and favorite foods, like, you really do dive deep. You see those conversations throughout the whole season change very quickly.”
With reporting by Diana Cooper