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{Casey Cunningham Photography} shared this fantastic wedding with our team and we knew we had to share it with our readers.  Not only is it Southern fabulousness but it also has a great story behind it of Margret + Andres combining their heritage to create one spectacular wedding.  Read on to hear how Margret used magnolias from her Grandfather’s farm in the wedding flowers, how Andres selected Spanish wines for the evening from his native Spain, Margret’s mom made the Pecan Pies for the reception and the list goes on. The reception was held at the {Charlotte Country Club} and the beautiful cake was baked by {For Goodness Cakes}.  For more photos click over to Casey Cunningham’s {Blog}.

How did the two of you meet? I was a junior at Davidson College when my best friend, Chiqui, announced that her brother, Andres, was flying from California for a visit. Andres and I hit it off instantly and began dating shortly thereafter, but distance and timing made it difficult for anything serious to emerge. Several years later, I went to visit Chiqui in Houston to celebrate New Year’s Eve. Andres and I reunited for the first time in over a year and the rest is history!
Describe the proposal: My little sister, Lee was visiting us in Houston in April 2008. Unbeknownst to me, Andres also flew in my parents from North Carolina so we could all “spend the weekend together.” Andres and Lee picked up my parents at the airport on Saturday evening, asked their permission, and took them to a restaurant where Andres’ parents were also waiting. I had been getting ready at his house when he returned to pick me up. He proposed at home and after I said “yes!”, we joined our parents and Lee for a celebratory dinner.
The weather on our wedding day was: Chilly, a bit cloudy, like a crisp winter day.
What was the design inspiration for your wedding? We wanted it to be elegant and reverent but also understated. We wanted to balance the luxurious romance of lace on lace and candlelight glow at the old historic church and at the reception with warm Southern hospitality, magnolia leaves from Grandpa’s farm, quail prepared to perfection, and favors of homemade pecan pies
Favorite design element of your big day: I loved our touches of dark red. It was the “bride’s color” and was only used for my bouquet, Andres’ boutonniere, rose petals around the wedding cake, and my favorite use – our red velvet wedding cake! I also loved the bridesmaid’s dress. I wanted something my bridesmaids would enjoy wearing and feel good in. Luckily, we were able to order the Saja dresses through our favorite boutique, Luna.
Tell us about finding your wedding dress: I went to at least 5 stores in Charleston and Charlotte with my mom and sister trying to find a gown. We quickly decided that the mermaid silhouette was perfect for my small frame. I have always admired Monique L’hullier’s work, so when I tried on her strapless Alencon lace mermaid gown, it was perfect! It just happened that my mom’s Alencon lace mantilla was striking over the lace gown; I was so happy to get to wear it.
Describe your wedding flowers: We used white everywhere with magnolia and other rich foliage with lots of different kinds of flowers – lillies, hydrangea, roses, Queen Anne’s lace, lilacs. The only pop of color was the deep shades of red roses and tulips in my bouquet, Andrés’ boutonniere, a scattering of red petals around the wedding cake and on our dinner table. All containers were silver, including family candelabra, and real beeswax tapers and votives provided a beautiful glow all evening.
Describe your wedding cake: White on white with cascades of sugar paste roses streaming down the cake. Red Velvet flavor with cream cheese filling! Elegant, beautiful and so delicious that every piece was eaten!
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: We wanted to acknowledge Andrés’ Spanish heritage. Our Director of Music, chose one Spanish composer for the Prelude and after the Seating of the Mothers, a beautiful soloist sang, acapello from the rear balcony, first in Spanish, and then English, “Surely the Presence of the Lord is in this Place”. We also loved that Andrés’ sister and my dear friend, Chiqui, was both a bridesmaid and lay reader.
Were there any special family traditions you included in the wedding? Andrés and the men enjoyed skeet shooting and barbecue on the Wedding Day at my Grandfather’s farm – just as my father and uncle had done on their wedding days. All the magnolia used to decorate the reception and church came from Grandpa’s giant magnolia, that was the backdrop for my parents’ wedding reception. My mom made all the reception favors, pecan pies, using my late grandmother’s recipe. The reception included a selection of Spanish wines and pan sautéed quail – cooked in a manner deemed awesome by all the Texans, including my husband!
Funniest moment? My cousin, Leah Marie, was enjoying dropping petals, then she turned around to pick up her “mess”….oh it was so sweet when the older Flower Girl, Hannah, encouraged her to join her in the walk down the aisle – hand in hand.
The most unexpected event on our wedding day was: Andrés’ ring was too large! Later, we would find that the highly respected jeweler had engraved and sent the wrong size.
Three adjectives that describe the day are: Reverent, joyful, true.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? Living together in Houston! For two years we have been splitting weekends between Houston and Austin while I’ve been completing the MBA program at the University of Texas in Austin.

Congratulations to Margret + Andreas. We wish you the best in love and happiness!

lara Written with love by Lara Casey
1 Comment
  1. avatar Erika reply

    Where did the bride get those adorable shoes? I love them!

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This wedding was a joy for our staff to look over. The wedding celebration all took place in Durham, North Carolina, which is the neighboring city to our office and many of the locations for this wedding celebration are highlights in Durham. Paige + Brandon happily married at {Duke Chapel} and happily treated guests to a reception at the {American Tobacco Historic District}. The wedding celebration and reception were photographed by {Tracy Turpen Photography}. She caught all the shots of the beautiful flower arrangements by {Tre Bella}, delicious food by {Durham Catering Company}, wedding cake and a Duke Blue Devils’ grooms cake by {Cinda’s Creative Cakes} and the beautiful calligraphy by {Della Carta Studio}. The bridesmaids wore {Watters} gowns and Paige was dressed in a beautiful {Eugenia Couture} gown. This wedding was planned by {Grace Leisure Events}. Check out all the shots on Tracy Turpen’s {Blog}. P.S. We love the shots of the couple at Cookout such a North Carolina college student tradition to go there late at night!

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. We met on the first day of freshman orientation at Duke University and were pretty much inseparable thereafter! We took the same political science classes, studied abroad in London, became involved in student government and then applied to law school together.

Describe the proposal: After asking my parents’ permission while visiting my family in Savannah, Brandon picked out a ring. On a fall evening during our second year of law school, he asked me to take a post-dinner walk to enjoy the weather. He surprised me by proposing in front of the Love sculpture in the middle of the University of Pennsylvania campus.

Why do you love your husband? He’s the quintessential Southern gentleman. He opens doors, he calls his parents and grandmother often, and he goes out of his way to make other people feel comfortable. His laugh is infectious, and everything is more fun when he’s around!

Why do you love your wife? Paige is the most beautiful and thoughtful woman I have ever met. She is incredibly intelligent and accomplished, but her sincere humbleness makes everyone feel at home. Her sense of humor keeps me laughing, her cuisine keeps me going back for seconds, and her love of reality TV keeps me in the know. I cannot imagine spending my life without her.

A date we went on that we’ll always remember: While studying abroad in college, we took a weekend trip to the Catalan region of Spain. We stopped in the town of Tarragona, outside of Barcelona, for dinner. After sharing paella and a bottle of cava, we walked up the main boulevard and looked out over the medieval harbor to the Mediterranean. It was one of those unplanned, but perfect and memorable evenings.

The weather on our wedding day was: rainy! We had always pictured a beautiful Carolina blue sky spring wedding, but the weather forecast was dismal. It rained for four days straight! Looking back though, the rain made everything so much cozier. The grey sky was stunning against Duke’s gothic architecture and the hazy light created a dramatic back-drop for our day.

What was the design inspiration for your wedding? Blending sleek sophistication with Southern hospitality. Our ceremony location, the Duke Chapel, is an awe-inspiring space with traditional gothic architecture, but our reception site, a renovated tobacco warehouse in the American Tobacco Historic District, is much more modern with very high ceilings and exposed brick walls. We wanted a style that bridged the two spaces and made our guests feel special.

Favorite design element of your big day: The tables at the reception. We had long rectangular tables covered in chocolate brown pin-tuck linens. The napkins were folded into the shape of dinner jackets with little black bow ties for a whimsical touch. We mixed arrangements that mimicked the bridal bouquet with lots of candles in hurricanes spread across the tables for an intimate glow. The centerpieces were spectacular – we had towering cherry blossom arrangements lined up down the middle of each table– the cherry blossoms reminded our guests that this was a spring North Carolina wedding, but maintained a sophisticated aesthetic.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress: I knew exactly what I was looking for; it was just a matter of finding it! I wanted a classic dress with lace details, an a-line skirt and cap sleeves. I took my mother, brother and future mother-in-law to Kleinfeld in New York to search for my dress. I chose one of the first dresses I tried on because it met all of my criteria and was so comfortable to dance in!

Describe your wedding flowers: We chose white and green flowers for our wedding and tried to pick flowers that you would find in a southern garden: freesia, hydrangea, cherry blossom, ivory spray roses, button mums, and hypericum berries. Green cymbidium orchids also added a modern touch. By placing fresh garden flowers in modern arrangements, the flowers stood out against the contemporary background of the tobacco warehouse. Our biggest flower challenge was that the Duke Chapel does not allow flower girls to drop petals. We did not want the flower girls to hold bouquets and look like the bridesmaids, so our florist came up with the precious idea of a ball of button mums. It turned out very well and matched the ring bearer’s button mum boutonniere perfectly.

Describe your wedding cake: Delicious! We opted for classic, white butter cream with navy ribbon and cymbidium orchids that matched the bridesmaids’ dresses and bouquets. There were four tiers, each with a different type of cake and filling. Brandon chose an awesome red velvet groom’s cake in the shape of suitcases with travel stickers from places we’ve been together. The cake designer placed caricatures of us in our wedding finery on top of the cake with Brandon holding a Duke pitchfork! Our friends cannot stop talking about the red velvet cake!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? We are both in school in Philadelphia, but really wanted to get married at Duke and closer to our families. It was difficult to plan the wedding from afar and we had to stay very organized so that we could make the most of the weekends we were able to get down to North Carolina. Luckily, my parents moved to North Carolina shortly before we were engaged and were able to oversee everything and follow up with our local vendors.

Were there any special family traditions you included in the wedding? I carried a tussy-mussy (silver bouquet holder) that members of Brandon’s family have used in their weddings. My parents also asked all of the guests to sign magnums of champagne at the Reception for us to open on our anniversary.

Funniest moment? Going to Cookout was a late night tradition at Duke, so Brandon asked our driver to take us to Cookout for burgers, hushpuppies and milkshakes after the wedding. We went up to the walk-up window to place our order and the man who took our order had no clue what to say! Everyone was honking and shouting congratulations to us! We could not stop laughing and cannot imagine what everyone must have thought of us!

Hardest decision you made in planning? The planning was fun, but as the event got closer, we worried about how all of the elements would come together. I refused to commit to “wedding colors” all along and had instead chosen colors and elements that drew attention to the beauty of the ceremony and reception venues. It seemed to match in our heads, but we would not be able to really know until we saw everything set up. When we arrived at the reception site and looked over the balcony we were relieved and thrilled – everything was even better than we had imagined and we could not have been happier with the end result!

The most unexpected event on our wedding day was: I came down with the stomach flu the night before the wedding and could barely get out of bed the next morning. Luckily, the parents of one of my bridesmaids are both physicians and were able to diagnose me, write a prescription and run to the drug store for chicken soup and ginger ale. They were God-sent and had me feeling well enough to walk down the aisle in no time!

Three adjectives that describe the day are: sophisticated, welcoming, lagniappe (Cajun expression for “a little something extra”)

What advice would you give to someone planning their wedding? Happy guests are essential to a perfect wedding. It is so important to make your guests feel comfortable and involved in the big day, rather than spectators waiting for the ceremony to end. We made a full seating chart to show our guests that we had thought about each and every one of them in planning our reception. Guest bags with a list of local attractions and restaurants as well as a detailed timeline of the weekend also ensure that your guests can relax and enjoy themselves. And do not be afraid to ask your guests to dress up for your wedding! Our family and friends looked so dashing in their tuxedos and evening gowns. It made everyone feel like an honored guest and our day even more magical.

Best advice or most memorable comment someone made to you during the wedding celebration. Get a weekend-of wedding planner! Even if you want to plan your wedding yourself (which we would recommend because it can be great fun), finding someone to coordinate the events allows you to enjoy the day with no added stress.

What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We graduate from law school in May and are moving to Houston to join the same law firm! We cannot get enough of each other after college AND law school together!

Any DIY items? We created a lot of our wedding elements in order to get exactly what we wanted. For example, I designed the save-the-date – a stylized map of Durham with landmarks from our lives together and the wedding. We also created our napkins by folding them into the shape of dinner jackets and making black bow ties. The guest welcome bags included some of our favorite snacks from North Carolina and Brandon’s native Louisiana. My mom and I baked 500 chocolate chip cookies from our family recipe to include in the welcome bags. It was a great way to spend time with my mom in the days leading up to the wedding and provided an additional personal touch for our guests.

 

Congratulations to Paige and Brandon! We hope you enjoy your new home in Houston!

Written with love by Southern Weddings
17 Comments
  1. avatar Katlina reply

    What a stunning wedding! I LOVE the Duke Chapel!!!!!!!!!!

  2. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  3. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  4. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  5. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  6. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  7. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  8. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  9. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  10. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  11. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  12. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  13. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  14. avatar Emily @ Peach & Pearl reply

    I love the map, and the bow tie napkins are so cute!

  15. avatar Megan reply

    Unbelievable photos!!!!! I love love love this wedding!!

  16. avatar Elizabeth reply

    Beautiful wedding – classic AND fun – great combo!Is there any way to find out where Paige’s bridesmaids got their dresses? Love them!Congrats to the happy couple!!

  17. avatar The Perfect Palette reply

    What an absolutely stunning wedding.

Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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For those that know me best know I am a hand bag enthusiast.  So I was quite excited to learn about {Beegee Bags} and their beautiful clutches in exciting patterns!  But then I became quite jealous of all our readers that were eligible to win the giveaway on our SW Blog!  But lucky for me, I get to pick the winner at random and hopefully bring a little excitement to someone on this Memorial Day Weekend!  Congratulations to Emie!

Emie we hope you enjoy your “White Birdie on a Clutch” Beegee Bag!  Please email me {laura_e at iloveswmag dot com} with your contact info and we will get you set up to receive your bag. Didn’t win but want to win? Make sure to check out the {Navy and Lavender} contest going on now.

Written with love by Southern Weddings
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    Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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