Google+ Joyful Magnolia Farms Wedding by Jess Barfield - Southern Weddings

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Abby and Cameron may not remember exactly when they first met, but I’m sure they’ll always remember everything about November 2, 2013. From the sweet morning Abby spent with her family, to the letters the couple exchanged around a corner in lieu of a first look, to their prayerful ceremony, to the family reunion feel of their outdoor reception, joy radiates from Abby and Cameron in every single one of their wedding day moments, captured beautifully by Jess Barfield. Don’t miss Abby’s recollection of her most memorable moment especially–it’s a wonderful reminder that every detail doesn’t need to be perfect in order to have your perfect wedding day!

I knew I wanted our wedding to be outdoors, and we wanted everything to have a family feel to it, so our venue was a house! Friends of ours recently restored a farmhouse that’s over 100 years old. The family is so dear to my heart, and they were extremely generous to allow us to have our wedding there. I couldn’t have dreamed of a more perfect place.

I had always thought I wanted a very mature-looking, fitted lace dress, since I have a pretty youthful look. I tried on what felt like a million of those and nothing seemed to click. One of my best friends had me try on a different style (one that my mom and aunt were trying to get me into all day) and I immediately knew I had found the dress for me! It fit my personality–it was more whimsical, fun, flowy, a little vintage, and I could dance in it (hello, a must!).

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We didn’t end up going with a first look. I wasn’t opposed to it, but Cam really wanted to experience the moment he first saw me in the context of our ceremony and worship! It was really special. Instead, we exchanged letters before the ceremony, which was one of my favorite moments of the day. It also allowed us to get a few cute pics!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? There were so many sweet moments I’ll never forget, like seeing Cameron tear up at the end of the aisle or the time with my immediate family the morning of the wedding. However, one of the funniest moments happened with my dad only minutes before we walked down the aisle. All of my bridesmaids had gone before me and my dad and I were waiting inside the farmhouse to go next. I stood up to peek out the window and snagged my dress on something on the floor! The whole bottom hem of my dress was hanging off. My dad looked at me to see how I was going to react and then we both just started laughing–what else can you do? He ended up cutting the hem off and we walked on out and down the aisle. We said we wouldn’t tell anyone (sorry, Dad), but it really helped me realize that not everything had to be perfect in order to have a perfect wedding day.

We didn’t have any readings, other than what our pastor read in his message. Instead, we had a time of worship, which was really important to us. Our number one goal for the ceremony was to create an atmosphere where the Lord was receiving all of the glory, honor, and praise. Worship was the most practical way for us to do this. It was so powerful and I will truly never forget those moments!

From the cotton in the floral arrangements to the rustic barn filled with chickens, the whole night felt very Southern. We had Texas BBQ and drank Nashville sweet tea. The band was located off the back porch, Louisiana-style, which made the reception seem laid-back and more like a big, fancy family reunion!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Probably the weather. We didn’t have a plan B, which, in retrospect, might not have been the best idea. I wanted everything outside, so we strung some outdoor lights in the trees and prayed for clear skies. It rained the entire week before my wedding and didn’t stop till Thursday–yikes! We brought in lots of hay and the groomsmen laid it down on some of the muddy parts of the land, which worked out great!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. My grandmother, Omee, recently passed away. We were extremely close and I wanted her to be a part of the wedding in some way. Her favorite kind of cake was strawberry, and thankfully, Cameron and I both love strawberry cake as well, so we had “Omee’s Strawberry Cake” for our wedding cake. Cameron is also a lover of all things peanut butter, so his groom’s cake was chocolate peanut butter.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. I remember first meeting Cameron at a spontaneous glow-in-the-dark dance party at a friend’s house during my first year at Baylor, but if you ask Cameron, he claims to have met me a year before, when I was visiting my older sister at school during my senior year of high school and his first year of undergrad. To this day, we still argue about who’s actually right–I always joke that it must not have been a very good first impression. We became really good friends throughout college, led a small group together at church, and attended several sorority/fraternity functions together. Cameron eventually asked me out on a date and I said no (whoops). He asked me two more times before I finally agreed. Needless to say, he won my heart and the rest is history!
Tell us all about the proposal! Cam knew I had always wanted to be surprised. I’m a tricky person to surprise though, so I knew I wasn’t going to be going on any random manicure dates with my best friends, or being asked to wear a pretty new dress on the day of my engagement. But at the very least, I was expecting to look somewhat presentable! The morning of my engagement, I was bombarded by my roommates from college sometime before the sun came up. I was blindfolded, thrown in a car, and dropped off on a bridge overlooking the river downtown. I know…creepy. But then, I took off my blindfold and there he was! He popped the question and I said yes! He planned out the whole rest of the day for us (which included my much-needed manicure and a new dress). The day ended with a HUGE party where my whole family surprised me. It really was the greatest!
When did y’all get married? November 2, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 325
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? Originally, we had planned to write our own vows, but we ended up dropping the idea once we got closer to the wedding and went with traditional ones.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. I walked down the aisle to a mash-up of “What God has Joined Together” by Laura Hackett and “My Soul Sings” by Cory Asbury. The first song is filled with Scripture we wanted to be sung over our marriage. It was really powerful and paved the way for an incredible ceremony. The second song is my favorite worship song. The ceremony was my absolute favorite part of my wedding day, and these songs and the people that sang them really made it a dream come true. We walked out to “Colorful” by Will Reagan & the United Pursuit, which was super upbeat and fun! Our first dance was Frank Sinatra’s, “The Way You Look Tonight.” I LOVE that song and I’m not opposed to sharing it with the millions of other couples out there. My dad and I danced to “Save the Last Dance For Me” by Michael Buble, and oh my stars, it was quite a show.
Describe your wedding flowers. We wanted the flowers to match the feel of the farm–organic, natural colors, nothing extravagant, really raw and earthy. I guess you could say I’m a minimalist at heart. We used cotton and wheat and threw in some big garden roses, hydrangeas, and ranunculus. I wanted the natural beauty of the venue to speak for itself and I felt like the flowers helped do just that!
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: My favorite detail of the wedding was the words I attached to my bridesmaids’ bouquets. I wanted to honor all of them individually and intentionally. At my bridal luncheon, I encouraged each girl by giving them a descriptive word or characteristic that the Lord has taught me through them (ex. joy, humility, compassion). I then attached the words to their individual bouquets for them to carry during the ceremony.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I did! I borrowed some lipstick (that counts, right?) and wore blue panties (risky, but they didn’t show through the dress!). My something old was a ring my grandmother who passed away had sewn into her own wedding dress, and my something new was my cute new Kate Spade earrings!
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? My photographer, Jess Barfield. At the beginning of planning, I knew there were only one or two things I was willing to use a good chunk of my budget on, and photography was one of them. It was well worth it! Jess was such a blessing the day of the wedding and leading up to the big day. She was peaceful and helpful, like a best friend! She also captured every moment beautifully! I was so happy to have her.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Stay thankful!!! I remember when Cameron and I were dating, all I wanted was for us to be engaged, and when we were engaged, I just wanted to be married. Looking back, I realize how thankful I am for our process and I wish I would’ve realized that more while I was experiencing it. There will always be something more you’ll want for your wedding that you can’t seem to make work, or something you plan that doesn’t turn out right. Stay thankful for the process you and your fiancé are in and for the details that are working out for your special day. It makes planning much more fun and stress-free!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Our next big adventure is law school! We’re excited to conquer a new city together and figure out married life at the same time. I think we both agree that we’re most looking forward to chasing our dreams together. It’s so fun to tackle a dream with someone else!

Photographer: Jess Barfield / Videographer: Jeff James / Planner and Florist: Alissa Neely / Venue: Magnolia Farms / Catering and Cake: JD’s Catering & Coffee / Bride’s Gown: Watters / Paper Products: Oh Ollie / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “204140” and “204150” by Mori Lee / Men’s Attire: J. Crew / Day-of-Coordinator: Allison McBrayer of Dot & Penny

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Mary reply

    I love love love this wedding! Such a sweet story of thoughtfully putting their special day together. I also ADORE Jess Barfield’s work and have a major crush over Joanna’s style and her restored farmhouse.

  2. avatar Beane and Company reply

    Beautiful! So soft and intimate…the photographer did a great job of capturing it!

  3. avatar Kristin reply

    Their joy is contagious and just leaps off the page and I ADORE the picture of Abby + Cameron reading their love letters.

  4. avatar Amanda {Planning It All} reply

    Beautiful wedding! The restored farmhouse was the perfect venue!

  5. avatar WrightBride reply

    So gorgeous! Love that they looked like they had a great time- and seems like they might’ve had a bit of a worship session during the ceremony..
    Hope they have a blessed marriage :)

  6. avatar Dana reply

    what a joyful couple!

  7. avatar Kelly reply

    What style is the bride’s beautiful dress?

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