Every time I sit down to write a Real Wedding post, the first thing I do is read the interview. Somehow, the details of each wedding feel so much more meaningful when I know why the couple in the images chose each one. When reading Jessica + Troy’s interview, I was so taken by how Jessica used each detail to show who she and Troy are as a couple, and to honor their family traditions. As just one example, she said, “We loved how all the details came together to tell our story. The bouquet I carried had a single green button on the back because the night Troy and I met, he caught one of his buttons on his chair and it ripped a hole in his shirt. He held his shirt closed the rest of the night, hoping I wouldn’t notice.” I love how a single button can represent a moment in their relationship! There’s much more where that came from, so read on!
Big thanks to our friends at Bamber Photography for capturing J + T’s big day!
Neither my mom nor my sister lived in Atlanta, so for my birthday they both came to visit and took me dress shopping. I planned a whirlwind weekend, getting appointments at every store I had heard of in effort to find the dress while they were with me. But by the end of the weekend, I was so exhausted that I couldn’t keep the dresses straight in my mind. I waited about a month and by that time there were only two dresses from the same store that I just couldn’t forget. When I went back with my bridesmaids, we couldn’t decide between the stunning lace of one dress and the flattering shape of the other so I combined the two.
Y’all, this may be one of my favorite details I’ve seen recently. I wish I’d done this for my sweet groom!
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. Troy’s brother is a musician so it meant a lot to have him play the music during our ceremony. I walked down the aisle to “In Christ Alone.” It is my favorite hymn and really says everything I wanted about entering into marriage. We also had him play “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz as we took communion. As corny as it may sound, the lyrics are really poignant about the sacrifice and commitment of marriage. We did our first dance to “Moon River.” It’s such a romantic song and reminds me of the ones I used to listen to on the radio at my grandmother’s house when I was little.
Describe your wedding flowers: A mix of ivory garden roses and ranunculus with olive branches.
I attended the wedding of my Godbrother last weekend, and they chose to do a moment of prayer around the bride and groom at the rehearsal dinner. It proved to be an incredibly emotional and powerful moment, and I love that Jessica + Troy chose to do something similar at their ceremony.
Stunning portraits from Bamber Photography! Oh my!
I think the fact that we wanted to emphasize family most reflected Southern tradition in our wedding. We chose to get married in Rome because Troy’s family has lived there for more than a century, and his grandfather owned a farm there for nearly 30 years. Our pastor was Troy’s cousin who is a good friend of ours and who spoke amazingly personal words to us in our ceremony. We had a small group of family and close friends so we invited all of our guests to stand around us and pray over us at the end of the ceremony. My mom found wedding pictures of our family from six generations back which we used to decorate the reception. We also had our dinner served family style so that our guests could share good food and conversation with each other and take the evening at its own pace.
Mini grilled cheese – yum! I know Emily would love that!
What a magical setting for the reception!
These little “did you know” cards popped up throughout the celebration, cluing guests in to why Jessica and Troy chose to include certain meaningful details. I love this idea so much!
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our first priority for planning our wedding was making it about us. We really wanted the day celebrating our union to emphasize who we were. We loved how all the details came together to tell our story. For our first Christmas, among other things, he bought me a jar of buttons in my favorite color so that I could replace it and we would both remember that night. Even our decorations were meaningful. We used railroad lanterns among the vintage furniture because my grandfather was a train conductor on the Seaboard railroad.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert: I don’t like cake so we didn’t want to spend a lot of money on a traditional wedding cake. Every year on my birthday, my grandmother used to make me a pound cake and it’s still the only cake I’ll eat. It’s unbelievable. My grandmother isn’t with us to make the cake anymore so my dad, whom I’m very close to, spent the day before the wedding making her recipe for us. Troy’s groom’s cake was a big chocolate cake from a bakery in his home town. Troy loves chocolate, so every year on his birthday I make him a cake like my grandmother did for me, but this year his birthday was the week before the wedding. We also had all of our favorite pies. There’s just something about pie that reminds me of fall and being close to family.
How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. We met at a birthday party. Troy and I were both invited by a mutual friend. Our friend picked me up first so all Troy could see when he got in the car was my hair. He says it was love at first sight. When we got to the party, Troy tried to sit next to me but kept getting stuck between a couple of guys with tattoos and facial piercings. We still managed to talk across the table all night but he never asked for my number because he thought I was dating our friend. He moved in with that friend a few weeks later and after not seeing me come to the house, he asked if we were dating. He called me about five minutes after finding out we weren’t.
Describe the proposal. Troy’s family spent one Thanksgiving at Cumberland Island and it has become one of his favorite memories with them. Knowing that I would love everything about it, he had been telling me about the island almost as long as we’d been dating. Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday so we spent it with my family in Jacksonville and took the short trip up to Cumberland Island while we were there. We got to the island early in the morning and spent the whole day hiking and watching the wild horses. At the end of the day we got to the ruins of the old Carnegie plantation. I’m an engineer, so Troy knew I would love how the shell of brick walls tell the story of the beautiful house that once stood there. The house overlooks a marsh and onto the ocean so we laid out a blanket to rest and watch the sun go down after our long day. I had only just gotten comfortable when he made me get back up for a picture. After a lot of resistance, I stood with my back to him overlooking the water while he got the camera ready. When I turned around he was on one knee and the automatic timer on the camera went off just as I started to cry.
In what month did you get married? November
How many guests attended your wedding? 100
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? About six weeks before the wedding, Troy was offered a promotion in another state and had to move quickly. Just being without him for that long at that time was difficult, but I also had to finish planning the wedding, transfer my job, and pack up all of our belongings mostly by myself.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Photography, it’s the only thing you will have left when the day is over.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Coming over the hill and seeing Troy waiting for me at the end of the aisle.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? Settling down! We had to stay in a hotel for a few weeks after we moved, waiting for our apartment to be ready. So more than a month after our wedding, we are just now getting to unpack and set up our home.
Bamber Photography is a fabulous member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!