Emily and I had the pleasure of traveling to Kentucky earlier this summer, and even though we were there for just a few days, we quickly fell in love with the Bluegrass State! Kelly and Mick fell in love quickly, too–while these University of Kentucky sweethearts started as friends, they knew right away that there was something more between them. Since one of their favorite traditions is attending nearby horse races (Mick even incorporated a horse race into his creative proposal), their wedding combined Kelly’s dream of an outdoor celebration with inspiration from their favorite date, to create a day that was as meaningful as it was beautiful. See how many gorgeous Southern details you can spot–from the bourbon barrel tables to the escort cards and more, there are lots to admire!
Thanks so much to Lynnesy Catron for sending this sweet day our way!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! Yes! My something borrowed was a thin rose gold ring of my mother-in-law’s. It is her favorite ring and it is one of a kind. My something blue was my Christian Louboutin shoes–the most amazing splurge of the wedding! Mick stole them the day before the wedding without me knowing and wrote the cutest message on the bottoms. My something old was my grandmother’s wedding band. My grandmother passed away a few years ago, and I had always wanted to wear her ring when I got married. Mick’s mom also gave me the ring that Mick’s dad gave her the day Mick was born. My something new were two amazing presents from my husband: he had a ring created in rose gold that has the Roman numerals of our wedding date, and something I’ve always wanted, diamond earrings.
My mom’s best friend owns a wedding boutique, Rebecca’s Wedding Boutique. She gave me the best present, and allowed me to go to bridal market with her and the staff in Chicago before my wedding. I worked at the boutique when I was in high school and sold wedding dresses to brides, so I knew a ton about wedding dresses and the designers. After the first day of previewing and shopping, I did not find anything that I loved, but the very last fashion show of the day was Watters, my favorite designer. When I watched my dress in the show, I knew instantly that it would be mine. Rebecca is close friends with the crew at Watters, so they let me go backstage and “model” the dress I loved. I walked down with my mom and friends from Rebecca’s watching, and I knew it was the one. It was such a special moment and I loved finding my dress that way.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. The boys walked in to “My Old Kentucky Home” being played on the violin. I walked down the aisle to Pachelbel’s Canon in D played on the violin, which was meaningful to me because both my mom and Mick’s mom walked down the aisle to that song.
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? With Mick working in the horse industry and my love of outdoor weddings, we knew that our wedding would be outside on a farm or centered around horses. When my lifelong friend found out we were engaged, she told me that I had to check out her friend’s venue, Saxony. With one visit, we knew it was right for us.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Where to start? We used all local produce for our menu, which included hot browns, shrimp and grits, and bourbon maple-glazed salmon. Our signature drinks were a bourbon sour and a madras. Mick’s mom hand-painted the most beautiful horses that were used as table numbers and a display over the tent. I also made bourbon barrel tables with glass tops that had wine corks in the bottom. To continue with the Southern horse racing theme, the escort cards were old fashioned betting totes (tickets). Brass name plates on the tables resembled name plates typically found on horse bridles. I also collected antique milk glass for the vases and antique gold frames to put pictures in. Instead of the traditional guest book, we asked people to sign old fashioned rocking chairs. For years to come, we can sit in the seats and read the words from all of the people who love us.
I have an unnatural obsession with peonies–there were over 400 peonies at our wedding! They lined all of the tables in single vases, in the bouquets, and in all of the flower arrangements. I love how romantic and airy the peonies were, and they blended well with the outdoors.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The family-inspired touches. We are both very family focused, and wanted that to show throughout the wedding. We had so many old family pictures of everyone displayed that it felt like we were home. Also, since Mick’s dad has passed, we had a special painting where people could write things that Jeff may have said if he were at the wedding.
Take a peek at Kelly + Mick’s wedding film, too!
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Mick was the first boy that I met at UK. We met on my very first day of college and were friends for a year, but already knew that there was something more. We took a geology class together, and Mick later told me that he took really great notes so that I would study with him. He even made sure they were very neat so that I would be able to read them (our pastor mentioned that during our ceremony). When Mick finally asked me out, we did the traditional movie and dinner date, and then on our third date, he took me to church with his mom and sister. Ever since, we have always been together.
Tell us all about the proposal! Mick works in the horse industry and I have grown up around horses. Every year, we try to make it to the track at least once with our couple best friends, and during the spring meet, we decided to go. I always pick a horse based off their names, not their stats–I just pick whatever is familiar to me or meaningful in some way. I had just won on the third race when Mick handed me a program and suggested that I pick one out for the fourth. It was a normal-looking program, and I start reading the names. The first one, Mr. Goldhouse, was a nod to the nickname for Mick’s college house–the first place we ever met. The second horse was Captains Quarters, which is the place we exchanged our first “I love yous.” The third horse was named My Girl Millie, Millie being the name of our dog. I told Mick and our friends that I had to bet on that horse, but they told me to keep reading. What followed next was St. Maarten Sweetheart, the first place we took a vacation together, Clubhouse Spouse, meaningful to his family, and White Wedding Dancer. I turned the page for the last horse, and it said Marry Me Kelly. I looked to see him down on one knee! After he asked, I noticed that the “jockeys” were all of our family members. It was amazing! He had had the page Photoshopped the day before and placed it into the program, complete with logos and everything. I had no idea!
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 175
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? We had the most amazing minister who met with us many times and helped us go over everything that we had not already discussed. We had the tough talks as well as the fun ones, and having a guide like Scott was the best thing that we could have asked for.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Taking care of everyone. I tried hard to make sure that both sides of the family were taken care of. I probably put too much of this on myself, but I just really wanted to make sure everyone felt special during our wedding.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? Flowers! My amazing wedding planner arranged all of my single peony arrangements, and that saved a ton of money. Talking with vendors in detail and really shopping around helped me become a savvy bride. I also made the chalkboards, signage, bourbon barrel tables, and bar letters myself (with help).
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Relax and enjoy the process! Everyone wants their wedding to be perfect, but make sure you enjoy yourself along the way. Especially two months out, start delegating! Your bridesmaids and MOH are there to help.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We just started the process of building a house, so that will be a huge step for us. Moving into our very own house and starting a family there is what we are looking forward to most these days. Also, we are looking forward to Mick’s sister’s wedding this February! We are so excited for her and her husband-to-be, and cannot wait to celebrate with them.
Photographer: Lynnesy Catron / Videographer: Jenn Byrne / Planner: Marti Holnagel / Venue: The Polo Barns at Saxony Farm / Florist: Stems / Cake Baker: European Delights / Caterer: The Woodford Inn / Rentals: Purdons / Band: The Jordan English Band / Bride’s Gown: “Kian Corset” and “Priya Skirt” by Watters / Bride’s Accessories Rebecca’s Wedding Boutique / Hair and Makeup: Katie Russo Beauty / Bride’s Shoes: Christian Louboutin / Maid of Honor’s Dress: “Sophia” by Watters / Bridesmaids Dresses: “WTOO 852” in Latte by Watters / Groom’s Attire: J. Crew / Groomsmen Attire: Macy’s / Tent: Goff Tent / Furniture: Canvas Event Furniture