Southern Weddings Magazine

Category: Real Southern Weddings

To all our sweet readers who are stressed out while wedding planning right now, take a deep breath and scroll through Sarah and Clint’s big day. Their summer brunch wedding was a joyful celebration of their love for God and each other, from the meaningful Bible readings they selected, to the mix CDs from throughout their relationship that played at their reception. I love all of their pictures in the Tennessee countryside, but my favorite is the last one in this post–it’s not a fancy detail or perfectly-posed portrait; rather, it’s a moment that gave me butterflies of excitement for that same moment at my wedding!

Thank you so much to Alex Bee for sharing Sarah and Clint’s lovely wedding with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. After a day of trying on every dress in Knoxville, I was beginning to lose hope. I wanted something simple, flowing, and comfortable for our hot August wedding. One of my bridesmaids follows J. Crew online, and she forwarded an email for a 24-hour wedding gown sale. I saw one that I knew would work, and bought it instantly! Within a week, it arrived at my house. It all happened so fast!

Clint’s wish was to wait to see me when I walked down the aisle with my dad. We did, however, meet to pray before the ceremony. I stood behind a screen and we held hands at the edge. We were able to get a lot of tears out of the way then, and we still had our classic wedding tradition. We also had plenty of time for pictures after the wedding!

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? Yes. It was a joy to share our handwritten vows with our guests. We both wrote and spoke a bunch of special promises, but one in particular I remember was that we promised to always be present and engaged every time we are together.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? Our officiant and friend read from 1 Corinthians 13 to demonstrate Jesus’ love for his church as an example of our giving our lives to each other. We know that as long as we put love for God first in our lives, we will bless each other as companions in marriage.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? We had a morning brunch wedding to beat the August heat, but we still gave each guest a fan to cool themselves off with. You could see Mt. LeConte of the Great Smoky Mountains from the field where we were married. We decorated with framed engagement pictures that we took in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park. The reception theme was burlap, maps, mason jars, trees, and flowers. We ate banana pudding, and I baked my Great Aunt’s snickerdoodles to pass out to our guests.

Describe your wedding flowers. I wanted white, green, and purple, so the florist showed us each flower they had in those colors. I trusted my florist, and they made a beautiful mix. My favorite flower is the Tennessee Iris, so I had a few in my bouquet.

Our wedding cake was simple and elegant. Because we both love trees, the icing was delicately shaped to look like the bark of a tree. It was decorated with hydrangeas and placed on a slice of a tree stump. We topped it with a “W” made of twigs. Clint’s favorite dessert is banana pudding, so I surprised him with that instead of a having a groom’s cake.

For our first dance, Clint surprised me with one of our favorite songs, “All I Mind is Losing You,” by The John Butler Trio. Clint recorded his own version in which groomsman Clay played the guitar while Clint sang. It was such a sweet moment. Throughout our relationship, I made Clint mix CDs of songs that I thought described how we felt about each other. We borrowed a sound system from our church, and played that variety of our love songs throughout the reception.

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t let this day or the planning be stressful, and trust in the ideas of others. All that matters is that you are marrying the love our your life, and the people that you love the most in the world will be there to witness and celebrate it with you.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met in French class on the first day of college at the University of Tennessee. We were also in the marching band together, so we had plenty of time to get to know each other. We became best friends instantly, and we officially became a couple on New Year’s 2008. We traveled to Tampa, Florida for a bowl game and watched the New Year’s fireworks on the beach. Right after, Clint asked if I would be his. :)
Tell us all about the proposal! Clint wanted to make sure that I wouldn’t know when or how he would ask, so his idea was for it to start like a normal day. We were having a picnic at the University of Tennessee’s Botanical Gardens after church, and then we went on a walk. The trees in the garden were beautiful with fall leaves, and the weather was perfect. We were casually talking about our lives and love, and then he stopped, knelt down, and asked me to honor him by becoming his wife. It was so simple and sweet, and the ring was so elegant and antique. I started crying when he told me he had asked my mom for my grandmother’s engagement ring. I didn’t even know it existed, and it was perfect!
When did y’all get married? August 10, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 100
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Because we had met in the marching band, we have several friends who can play instruments. Clint played the French horn, and he asked two of his friends to play for the ceremony. He selected a few hymns that we both love. During the ceremony, we wanted to take a moment to praise God. We printed the words to one of our favorite hymns, “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing,” and put a copy on each chair. Our officiant, a long-time family friend of Clint’s, led us and our guests in singing.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: We both loved the large oak tree that we were married underneath. It was the perfect setting–so majestic and elegant on its own.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? I was away completing an internship in Washington, D.C. during the spring, so I had to trust my fiancé and my parents to make most of the decisions. In a way, it was a blessing. We had such a stress-free wedding planning experience, and I am so grateful for that.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? Less than $10,000
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? My photographer! Alex Bee has an eye for capturing emotional moments. This is a much better way to remember your wedding day: with photos of the joy of the day, rather than something posed.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Saying a prayer together before the ceremony, and the moment immediately after the ceremony! So much love and excitement!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are both graduate students, so our next big goal is to graduate! But the best thing about being married is tackling it all together!

Photographer: Alex Bee / Second shooter: John Shim / Venue: The Riverdale School / Florist: Powell Florist / Cake Baker: Jane Monday, friend of the bride’s family / Caterer: Billie Bounds, Catering on a Shoestring / Bride’s Gown: J. Crew /
Paper Products: The Groom / Paper Fans: Accent the Party / Bride’s Shoes: Dillard’s / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Target / Men’s Attire: L. L. Bean

lisa Written with love by Lisa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Dana reply

    i love her sweet flower crown!

  2. avatar Stephanie reply

    I love this wedding so much, as this couple absolutely radiates joy and love! Some of the best weddings that you see aren’t the ones where the budget is sky-high but instead is one when the couple so clearly celebrates what really matters – their love, their faith, and their family!

  3. avatar Sarah reply

    Brings tears to my eyes…
    It sounds and looks so sweet and so beautiful. They all look gorgeous.
    I just can’t help it but to be so touched by a couple who share their love for God together!

  4. avatar Kyla F reply

    I love that this wedding was centered around what matters most. Sarah and Clint’s joy and love for each other is so apparent in every photo. I adore that sunflower field picture the most!

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We know lots of y’all are wedding nerds (welcome to the club–we are too!), but I must say, there’s always something refreshing about a laid-back bride. Audrey and Ryan focused on the things that only they could do, like choosing meaningful music for their ceremony and reception, and left the rest up to the team at Le Rae Events and Design. As you can see in these pictures by Blue Ribbon Vendor Leslie Hollingsworth, everything came together so beautifully. I especially can’t stop admiring all of the pretty pastel blooms!

Thank you so much to Leslie Hollingsworth for sharing Audrey and Ryan’s wedding day with us!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We knew each other for several years before our actual first date, thanks to our interests in soccer. At the end of my freshman year of college, one of my friends came over to my apartment, and we got on Facebook. I don’t remember exactly how Ryan popped up, but when he did, I told my friend how good looking I thought he was. She proceeded to act like she was me on my Facebook and Ryan asked me on our first date. After our first date, I got scared and backed out, but we kept in touch throughout the next few years. Once I graduated and moved back home, we went on our second first date. We have been inseparable ever since.

My mom and I went to a store in Jasper, Alabama to go dress shopping. I knew the moment I tried my dress on that it was the one. It was just what I had dreamed of: form-fitting, not too big of a train, sleeveless, and lace, with just enough sparkle. Plus, it was comfortable!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? The most memorable moment for me was during the ceremony. I could not stop crying, and seeing one of the groomsmen crying in the background made me cry even more. I remember Ryan looking at me with watery eyes and smiling as he wiped my tears off my cheek. Everyone aww-ed in the background, and Leslie took a picture of the memorable moment!

Describe your wedding flowers. I honestly have no clue about flowers, so I just told Rae from Le Rae Events that I liked wildflowers and pastel colors, and she did the best job picking them out! They were beautiful!

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our wedding was at a beautiful barn with a deck that overlooked a pond. My mom bought mason jars and used black chalkboard paint to paint mustaches on the jars for the men, and pink chalkboard paint to paint lips on them for the women. We also had a cute food truck that served hamburgers, wings, and french fries.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. My cousin, Adam Nichols, bakes for a living, so I told him I just wanted the cake to taste like my favorite candy: a Reese’s peanut butter cup. The cake was dark chocolate with Reese’s and a peanut butter layer inside. It was the best cake I had ever tasted! My dad got a tree stump to set the cake on, and Adam carved a heart with our names inside, which was so beautiful and went well with the theme. Adam also made some pastel flowers to place on top of the cake. For the groom’s table, we bought pies from Red’s Little School House, a local place that catered the wedding, and they were delicious!

Tell us all about the proposal! One day in March, about a year after we started dating, I had a feeling deep inside me that I could not shake, so I went to a jewelry store and picked out a ring that I knew Ryan would like. However, I decided to leave without it and wait patiently for him to ask in his own time. As the day wore on, that feeling would not go away, so I went back to the store and bought the ring. I then cooked Ryan a fantastic dinner, got down on one knee, and asked him to spend the rest of his life with me.
When did y’all get married? September 21, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? About 200
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did decide to do a first look, and I am very happy that we did. I wanted to capture the moment Ryan first laid eyes on me, and what better way to do that than a first look?
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. I did not want to walk down the aisle to the traditional wedding march. When I heard “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri, I knew that was the song I wanted. However, I also wanted everyone to hear the beautiful words, so I asked my cousin to sing (with the piano and cello in the background) while my bridesmaids walked down the aisle, and when it was my turn, the piano and cello beautifully took over. I am a Beatles girl, so I could not walk back up the aisle without “All You Need is Love” playing. Our first dance was to Eric Clapton’s “Beautiful Tonight.” I just love that song, and thought it was the perfect song to dance to with my new husband. We also asked the band to to play “September” by Earth, Wind, and Fire. Since our wedding date was September 21, the lyrics were so perfect: “Do you remember the 21st night of September? Love was changing the minds of pretender while chasing the clouds away. Our hearts were ringing in the key that our souls were singing as we danced in the night, remember how the stars stole the night away.”
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Having everyone there to celebrate the most special day of our lives with us. Our day would not have been as special without our friends and family by our side.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? I am a pretty laid back person, so I did not have many challenges. It definitely helped to have someone there to plan the wedding and get all of the details that I did not want to worry about together. I do not know what I would have done without Rae!
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? How can I pick just one detail? The whole day was full of details and our vendors did everything they could to make sure our day was the best. Le Rae Events did an amazing job moving an outdoor wedding inside, and created a beautiful aisle and backdrop. Leslie did a fantastic job capturing our precious moments of the day! I am so happy to of had them both by my side, creating and capturing my fairy tale.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Do not stress out over your day, because at the end of it, no matter what crazy situations may come, you will be married to the love of your life. Nothing other than that truly matters.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are looking forward to becoming parents. We are expecting a little girl, and could not be happier. We can’t wait to raise our family and grow old together.

Photographer: Leslie Hollingsworth / Videographer: Sylvester Folks / Planning, Flowers, and Lighting: Le Rae Events and Design / Rentals and Linens: Brendle Rentals / Venue: The barn at Pisgah Hill / Cake Baker: Adam Nichols / Caterer: Red’s Little School House / Band: The Syndicate Band / Bride’s Gown: Allure / Bride’s Hair Accessories: Prattville Bridal Boutique / Hair and Makeup: Carmen Darden / Bride’s Shoes: Antonio Melani / Bridesmaid Dresses: ModCloth

Leslie Hollingsworth is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
5 Comments
  1. avatar Emily reply

    Their food truck is too adorable! Love it!

  2. avatar Amber reply

    Everything is so beautiful!

  3. avatar Laraine reply

    So sweet and warm

  4. avatar Rae Culver reply

    Tears…….Seriously! What a confirmation of why we love what we do! As if being on here isn’t enough, but then the sweet words by our gorgeous bride! Day made! :)

  5. avatar Friday Fresh Squeeze #122 | Floridian Weddings reply

    […] + a barn + the most gorg flowers… such prettiness from one of our Faves, Leslie […]

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In the middle of January, Samantha and Micah’s lovely Hilton Head wedding is a breath of fresh air! Inspired by Samantha’s family’s beach house, they set out to plan their Southern coastal wedding, complete with sentimental family heirlooms, lovingly DIY-ed details, and most importantly, an “outdoor church.” With a grove of trees covered in Spanish moss acting as the roof, Samantha and her family hunted down the perfect vintage doors and windows to display, creating an intimate space for the ceremony. Truly, every part of Samantha and Micah’s big day was a celebration of their love for God and one another!

Big hugs to Blue Ribbon Vendor Amy from Amy Arrington Photography for sharing Samantha and Micah’s wedding with us!

Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I borrowed my mom’s diamond necklace and earrings. I also used my sister’s veil (she got married four months before me!). For my something old, I wanted something from each of my grandparents with me on my wedding day. My mom’s mother gave me a ring she always wore, that she knew was my favorite. She also let me borrow her locket (featuring a picture of her and my grandpa inside). I also had an old cameo broach from my father’s mother that goes back four generations. I hooked the brooch and the locket on my bouquet. My something new was my dress and my lavender shoes! My favorite item was my getaway dress. My mother, sister and I redesigned my mother’s wedding dress, and my sister also used it for her wedding rehearsal dinner dress–I guess you can say it was old and borrowed! My something blue was my garter, but I also wore my mother’s garter from her wedding day!

My family has a beach house on Hilton Head, and Micah, my family, and I have been collecting driftwood for years. I wanted to incorporate the driftwood into the decor to give everything a low country, natural feel. Henry, the owner of The Flower Garden, understood my vision and made it happen! My bouquet was a mix of greenery, white flowers, and lavender. It was wrapped in a piece of lace from my mother’s wedding dress, finished with jewelry from my grandparents.

Essentially, we built an outdoor church. My mom, sister, and I hunted through flea markets to find the perfect doors, and then refinished them while my father constructed a frame for them so that they opened and closed functionally. The wreaths on the doors were made in memory of my deceased grandfathers, decorated to honor their military service and personal interests. There were six church windows specifically place along the aisles to represent our outdoor church setting, and the beautiful Spanish moss-filled oak trees acted as our church roof. The cross at our altar was made from 100+ year old wood and designed by a local artist.

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We decided not to do a first look. We are pretty traditional in that way and wanted the first time we saw each other to be when I walked down the aisle! Honestly, I’m so glad we did it this way. I did, however, have a “first look” with my father. It was so special and a moment I will never forget!

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We didn’t write our own vows; it was important to both of us to say traditional vows. However, my uncle and Micah’s cousin officiated out wedding. They told stories about us as a couple and made the whole ceremony personal and Christ-centered. It meant so much to us to have family as our officiants!
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We chose two readings, Mark 10:7-9 and Colossians 3:12-13. These two verses really stood out to us during our premarital sessions with our officiants. We thought both of these verses displayed the love and the kind of relationship Micah and I strive for.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our ceremony underneath beautiful oak trees with Spanish moss set the tone for our Southern coastal wedding. The historical venue dated back 300 years. Each guest was given a welcome package with sweet tea or lemonade and a few of mine and Micah’s favorite goodies. The reception food was also very Southern–we served dishes such as shrimp and grits and pecan-crusted chicken.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. I found inspiration for our wedding cake from a picture in a magazine, and our baker made the cake look ever better than I could have imagined! We had two flavors–Micah chose white chocolate cake with raspberry filling and I chose vanilla cake with strawberry filling. The outside had an awesome buttercream frosting decorated with fresh olive branches and lavender.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met on the first day of our freshman year in religion class at Presbyterian College. Micah was the smart, cute guy who sat behind me. As we got to know each other, we started to spend more time together and became close friends. However, we didn’t make it official and actually start dating until our junior year.
Tell us all about the proposal! Micah: I came home from law school in Virginia for fall break, having planned with the Thomas/Black clan that this would be the weekend I would propose. My mom planned to cook an elaborate celebratory dinner for our families after I popped the question, but she needed time to prepare for everything without Sam becoming suspicious. So, I decided to take Sam to Table Rock Mountain to hike for the afternoon. I should mention, it’s a very difficult hike and I made Sam do it with a torn meniscus. After our hike, we returned home to my family’s farm, and went to the dock overlooking our pond. While we “waited on my mom to finish cooking dinner,” I tried to hide my nerves as we talked. As we began to leave, I told Samantha that I loved her and I wanted to spend the rest of my life with her. I got down on my knee and asked her to marry me. Of course, she didn’t believe this was really happening, because I may or may not have done several “fake proposals” during our five years together. However, when she saw the ring, she realized I was serious. Both of our families were waiting on us at my house, and we had a wonderful evening celebrating together.
When did y’all get married? October 5, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 140
Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I had visited several bridal shops with my mom and sister looking for “the dress.” After having a pretty bad experience at one of them, I felt a little discouraged. However, Wedding Angels in Roswell, GA was fantastic! I had a pretty good idea of what I wanted and the wonderful staff members helped me find the perfect dress. I knew it was the one the moment I stepped into it and my mom started crying!
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. I didn’t want traditional wedding songs, but I love the elegant sound of the cello! Our cellist worked with me to come up with contemporary Christian music that sounded awesome on the cello. My bridesmaids walked in to “A Thousand Years,” the same song my sister had her bridesmaids walk down the aisle to. I walked down the aisle to “Never Once.” I loved the lyrics and the meaning behind the words. A sweet friend sang “10,000 Reasons” as Micah and I lit the unity candle. This was one of my favorite parts of the day and it was special to have her singing for us. Our first dance was to “Keeper of the Stars.” Choosing the mother/son and father/daughter songs were the easiest decision of the whole wedding–we had both known what we wanted for years! Micah danced with his mother to “Landslide” and I danced with my dad to “My Girl.”
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? My sister and I got married four months apart, and neither of the weddings took place in our hometown. Obviously, that comes with a lot of added coordination, but the biggest challenge for Micah and I was being so far apart from each other. Micah was awesome, and whenever I asked his opinion on different things, his response was pretty much always the same: “whatever makes you happy.” That being said, it’s hard to plan a day all about the two of you when when your other half is states away.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? One would be our officiants: my uncle and Micah’s cousin. They both did a great job making our ceremony God-centered and so personal to us. My other favorite vendor had to be Amy Arrington Photography! Amy and Brandon also shot my sister’s wedding, so they are beginning to feel like family! We loved their focus on lighting and their laid-back personalities. They are both so sweet to work with and we couldn’t have been happier with the incredible pictures they took!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Samantha: My most memorable moment was lighting the unity candle while a very close friend sang. It was the first time that I was able to take a few moments to breathe and just focus on Micah and I. Micah: My most memorable moment was saying the wedding vows to my wife. Looking at her and telling her on our wedding day that I would love and support her for the rest of my life, no matter what, will always stand out in my mind from that day.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Have your wedding reflect the two of you as a couple. If you are really creative and like to do things yourself, do that. But if that’s not your thing, don’t stress yourself out. Think about the things that make the two of you unique and incorporate those things in your day. It helps make wedding planning fun and special instead of stressful.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We have had a long distance relationship for the past three years as Micah went to law school in Virginia and I got my Master’s degree in Atlanta. We love just finally being together and starting our marriage in a new town in South Carolina. We are looking forward to building a family together and creating a God-centered marriage!

Photographer: Amy Arrington Photography / Videographer: Artifice Films / Venue: Coastal Discovery Museum / Florist: The Flower Garden / Wedding Cake: Frankie Cakes / Catering and Wedding Coordination: Celebrations Catering / Lighting: Hilton Head Event Lighting / Band: The Vistas / Bride’s Gown: Wedding Angels /
Invitations: Coppia Creativa / Programs: Papel Custom Design / Napkins: With Love and Ink / Hair Stylist: The Hair Designers / Makeup Artist: Kiah from Skinzin / Bride’s Shoes: Bandolino / Bridesmaids’ Dresses Bill Levkoff / Men’s Attire: Jos. A Banks / Ties: Saks Off 5th / Bridesmaids Jewelry and Robes: Anchor of Hope Designs (the bride)

Amy Arrington is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
10 Comments
  1. avatar Kyla F reply

    Samantha and Micah’s venues were breathtaking! The doors were a really neat idea, especially with Mark 10:9 painted beautifully onto the piece. I think it is so special that they found a way to incorporate a traditional church setting into the outdoors – wonderful job!

  2. avatar Faith reply

    Wow!!! Absolutely beautiful!

  3. avatar Emily reply

    Such gorgeous portraits. And their ceremony set-up reminds me of Natalie + Wade’s — so pretty + meaningful!

  4. avatar Dana reply

    the outdoor church is so awesome!

  5. avatar mary thomas reply

    As mother of the bride it is difficult to be objective how beautiful Samantha & Micah’s wedding was. Amy Arrington was so great to work with and captured the day perfectly. Looking at these pictures makes me relive the entire day all over. Thank you Lisa for presenting it in such great style, we so appreciate Southern Weddings for this fine presentation.

  6. avatar Taylor Rae reply

    As the sister of the bride I’m not objective in the slightest, but Samantha and Micah are such a wonderful couple! This wedding was so much fun to be apart of! Love it all!

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    […] I love seeing beautiful and unique wedding ceremony ideas. How beautiful are these rustic looking doors that open to the aisle and your future husband? Photographer: Amy Arrington Photography | Hilton Head wedding on Southern Weddings […]

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One thing we love most about the South, and Southern weddings in particular, is that accompanying a love for tradition is an equally strong love for being true to ourselves. Today’s lovely couple, Megan and Aaron, are a perfect example of this. Planning a wedding in six months, walking down the aisle to bluegrass music, and playing lawn games in October, for example, are all things that many people might consider “against the rules” when it comes to weddings, but as Megan realized, there really aren’t any rules! As a result, their wedding was full of moments and details that truly meant something to them.

We’re so inspired by Megan and Aaron–thanks to Chris Isham for sharing their wedding with us!

We had talked about getting married for quite awhile, but the night we got engaged was a complete surprise. Two of my friends from Nashville were in town for the weekend. Aaron found out the ring was ready on Friday, and after talking with the girls, he made a plan to ask me that same night. For the entire night, the girls were stalling me, but I had no idea–he apparently kept texting them to say he needed more time. After a leisurely stroll through the park, a concert, and a tour of my place, we finally arrived at Aaron’s house. His car wasn’t there, so I assumed he wasn’t home. After some coaxing to get me into the kitchen, I turned the corner to see him standing in the dark with candles lit, tons of flowers, and the cutest handmade sign ever. I was in complete shock, but of course, I said yes!

I knew I wanted a very neutral color scheme for the wedding overall, but I also wanted to have a few subtle hints of fall. My flowers were mostly white and blush with green accents and hints of rust and dark brown. I don’t know a ton about flowers, but I told the florist what I was looking for, and they completely nailed it!

Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My old and blue was one and the same. Within the last few years, I lost my grandparents. They were the sweetest couple and I really admired their marriage. My grandfather served in the Vietnam War, and while he was away, he sent my grandmother a sweet pillow cover that said, “Sweetheart- Until we meet again, sweet thoughts to you I send, may all my blessings be with you, Your sweetheart always true.” I had my seamstress cut this part of the pillow cover and sew it into the bottom of my dress. It was a way to have them as part of the wedding even though they weren’t physically there. My something new was my dress and jewelry. For my something borrowed, one of my maids of honor took part of the leftover material from her bridesmaid dress after she had it altered and incorporated it into a garter for me.

We hired a bluegrass band to play at our reception and a few songs for the ceremony. Instead of going with traditional wedding songs, the wedding party and I walked down the aisle to some fun, upbeat, traditional bluegrass songs. It fit perfectly with the setting and casual atmosphere I wanted for the wedding.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We chose to say the traditional vows that our pastor provided us with, but there was a line in them that I hadn’t heard before. It said, “I pledge to never stop learning to be your husband/wife.” It was my favorite line because it’s so true that marriage is a learning process. Neither of us is going to be perfect all the time. The goal is to learn how to be a better wife/husband throughout this journey.

The biggest challenge for me in the whole wedding planning process was trying to find a venue. We got engaged in April and we wanted to get married by November. Since most brides plan their weddings at least a year out, I had a hard time finding availability. I stumbled upon a venue in Asheville called Yesterday Spaces and absolutely fell in love, but they only had Sundays available. After talking it over with Aaron and my family, we decided we could make it work if we had the wedding earlier in the day. Once the venue was locked in, wedding planning was smooth sailing from there on out.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our wedding had a very Southern feel. The setting was on a farm and the ceremony was outside. At the reception, we opted for a buffet-style dinner with lots of yummy food, including a good ol’ Southern side of mac and cheese, and of course, sweet tea!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. I went with a small, simple, white, round cake with ombre ruffles, and then had a variety of cupcakes with mini ruffles. Aaron isn’t a big dessert person, but he does love apple pie, so instead of a groom’s cake, we also had mini apple, pecan, and pumpkin pies. The desserts were displayed on white porcelain stands and slices of tree to give the dessert table the rustic and elegant look I was going for.

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? You don’t have to go with tradition or do what everyone else does. In some aspects of our wedding, I felt like I needed to do the “traditional” things, but some of them just didn’t feel like us. After someone told me I didn’t HAVE to do anything, I quit stressing about the things I felt like I should do, and just went with things that we liked.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. In the summer of 2011, I was encouraged to try online dating by a friend’s sister. I brushed it off, but later mentioned it to my roommate. After being “dared” and curiosity getting the best of me, I took the plunge and joined an online dating site for one month. Luckily, Aaron was encouraged by a few friends to give it a try as well and joined at the same time I did. Three months after communicating, we met up in Greenville for a brief coffee date, and then two months later, we had our first official date in Nashville. We dated long distance for almost a year before I moved to Greenville, and we got engaged a few months after I moved down.
When did y’all get married? October 27, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 120
Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I went home to Nashville to go dress shopping with my mom over Memorial Day weekend. I knew if I didn’t find a dress that weekend, I would most likely have to shop without my mom, so I was determined to find something. I found my dress at the second store we went to and I fell in love with it immediately. We already had an appointment set up at another store afterwards, so I went to take a look at some other options, just in case. The whole time I was there, I kept thinking about the other dress, so we rushed back to go get it!
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did do a first look. Aaron was hesitant, but I wanted to be able to hug, kiss, and talk to him the first time I saw him that day. I’m so glad we did. The rest of the day flew by, so it was nice to share a few moments alone before all the craziness of the day started.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The caterer created “His” and “Hers” signature drink to serve. Aaron likes ginger, so his was a blackberry ginger lemonade. I love fruity drinks, so mine was a sparkling strawberry, pineapple, and kiwi cocktail.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? I can honestly say I was thrilled with all my vendors. Every one of them was amazing to work with, and they truly wanted to make our wedding day wonderful. The day went off without a hitch because of their hard work, which made for a fun and stress-free day.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Taking communion together as a couple during our ceremony is something that stands out from our wedding day. A friend of mine played a song we love on her guitar while the pastor prayed over us, and we had communion privately. It was just a special moment between the two of us.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Aaron and I are in the process of looking for and buying a house. I can’t wait to get settled into our first home together, start lots of traditions, and make lots of memories as a family.

Photographer: Chris Isham / Videographer: Hart to Heart / Planner: Verge Events / Venue: Yesterday Spaces / Florist and Lawn Games: Flora / Cake and Cupcakes: Tiffany’s Baking Co. / Catering and Mini Pies: Dining Innovations / Linens: Classic Event Rentals / Band: Bear Down Easy / Favor bags: Sixpence Press / Honey Favors: Hortons Farm / Cake Topper: Better off Wed / Lawn Signs: My Repurposed Life / Bridesmaid Robes: Silk and More / Chalk Art: Ryan Staus / Bride’s Gown: Augusta Jones / Bridal Salon and Veil: The Bride Room / Paper Banners: Megan Brooke Handmade / Flower Hairpiece: Pure Blooms / Jewelry: Dessy / Hair Stylist: Amanda from The Secret Spa / Makeup Artist: Wendy Ballance from Blush / Bride’s Shoes: Nina / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Georgette Collection from Aria / Men’s Attire: Men’s Wearhouse

Chris Isham is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
6 Comments
  1. avatar Rustic Farm Wedding at Yesterday Spaces reply

    […] lovely folks at Southern Weddings have featured our wedding today on their blog. Be sure to head on over to check out some additional […]

  2. avatar Emily reply

    Too many beautiful things to point out about this wedding – I adore the going away truck, the fall ceremony, and the s’mores bar!

  3. avatar Kyla F reply

    The neutral color scheme of Megan and Aaron’s wedding sits beautifully against the backdrop of the autumn landscape. I really like their food selections, especially the s’more station and mac & cheese -such fun details! The idea of taking communion together as a couple is so special, too. That is something I would love to incorporate into my own wedding someday.

  4. avatar erin {a lowcountry wedding} reply

    love this smores bar!

  5. avatar January in Review reply

    […] I shared pictures from our rustic farm wedding at Yesterday Spaces. And also shared that our wedding was featured on Southern Weddings. […]

  6. avatar Mere Found Her Beau: The Ceremony – Southern Weddings Magazine reply

    […] music inspiration from Megan and Aaron (by Chris Isham) and Catherine and Kyle (by Pink Shoe […]

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I’m sure many of y’all are no stranger to wedding weather woes–whether it stormed on your big day or you’re getting ready to bury the bourbon, unpredictable weather is a nerve-wracking factor that every outdoor bride has to endure at some point. Enter the lovely Hannah and Andy. It poured buckets on their June wedding day, and since their rain plan wouldn’t fit the 350 loved ones who showed up to support the couple, the umbrellas came out, and guess what? No one cared! The rain stopped a short half hour before the ceremony, and the rest of the day was pure joy, happiness, and fun for the bride, groom, and their guests alike. It just goes to show that when it comes down to it, all that matters is that you’re married at the end of the day–rain or shine.

Thanks so much to Kristin Sweeting for sharing Hannah and Andy’s special day with us!

Andy proposed almost exactly three years into our dating relationship. I was visiting Knoxville for a few days to help my little brother move into his freshman dorm, and I decided to stay a few extra days so I could spend some time with Andy (I was in Nashville at the time, so we only saw each other once a month or so). Andy picked me up one morning to go hiking in the Blue Ridge mountains of North Carolina. He beat me to the top and was on one knee by the time I caught up with him. He forgot everything he wanted to say, but it was such a sweet time of happiness, joy, and relief. We had known for two years that we were going to marry each other; we had just been waiting for the right time. The panoramic view of the mountain range was the most beautiful setting for such a special occasion. It was absolutely perfect.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I went to the J. Crew wedding shop in Atlanta, even though I had already purchased a dress. After trying on the entire collection, I still wasn’t “in love” with a dress. I have never been a huge fan of getting all gussied up, and comfort was a main selling point concerning my wedding gown. The sales lady remembered a dress they had in storage from a previous collection. It was a few years old, a sample size, and only had been tried on six times. And it had pockets! It was perfect, but also out of our price range. I was so disappointed, because this was the first dress I really felt like a BRIDE in. The sweet sales lady at J. Crew talked to her manager, and they offered the dress to us for 90% off! It was such an incredible blessing–my mom cried!

Andy was very adamant that he wanted our first look to be when I walked down the aisle. However, we did pray together the day of the wedding, right before the ceremony. It wasn’t planned ahead of time, but since it was raining so violently, we were unable to take all the photos we thought we would beforehand. That gave us a large window of free time, so I asked my pastor to grab Andy from the basement so we could all pray together. We held hands on either side of a door as our pastor prayed over us. It was so comforting to hear my future husband’s voice praying for our special day. It set us both at ease and gave me peace.

Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Andy and I chose hymns for the ceremony: “In Christ Alone,” “How Deep the Father’s Love For Us,” and “O Love That Will Not Let Me Go.” After we said our vows, the congregation sang “Be Thou My Vision” as my maids of honor and Andy’s best man prayed for us. It was such a beautiful thing to hear our closest friends and family sing blessings over our marriage.

Describe your wedding flowers. They were absolutely amazing–our florist completely captured my scatterbrained vision! I wanted the majority of the arrangements to be basic, in order to showcase particular flowers. Fresh moss, willow, and wax flower created a stunning foundation for the peonies and feathers I was so thrilled to have in our floral arrangements.

One of my dearest friends offered her farm to us as a venue even before Andy proposed. She has had an incredible influence on my life, from a spiritual leader, to a second mom, to a best friend. When Andy and I started dating, I found out that she knew his family, and was actually in his parents’ wedding party. It was such an honor to be the first wedding on their beautiful property, and we are beyond grateful for the incredible amount of work and love that she, her husband, and their children contributed to making our day amazing.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? It POURED. Seriously, the heavens opened and released a sea of water. Our entire wedding was outdoors. We had a Plan B, but there was no way it would accommodate the number of guests we invited. The ceremony was scheduled to begin at 5:30. The rain began around 3:30. Instead of taking my bridal shots outside, we were forced to shoot them on the screened-in porch overlooking the venue. We had to stop after only a few photos were taken because it was raining so hard, there was almost no natural light at all. The rain let up about thirty minutes before the ceremony and never started up again. Despite the monsoon, over 300 of our friends and family made the trip to our drenched, half-decorated wedding. I have been told our wedding was one of the most fun weddings some of our friends have been to. I am not sure if they feel obligated to say this, or if I am biased because I was the bride, but I have really never had that much fun at a wedding. My shoes and gown were soaked and muddy, all the tablecloths were wet, and we ran out of alcohol, but none of that mattered. The entire celebration was a blur, but the thing I remember as clear as day is how much fun we had. No amount of planning, decorating, or spending could have determined that. It was our friends and their ability to look past the rain that make the night the joyful celebration it was meant to be.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met at a Camp Vesper Point in Soddy Daisy, TN, a camp we had both attended our entire lives. We never actually met until we were 17 and both on staff at CVP. We dated for three and a half years, some of which were long distance, before we FINALLY got married!
When did y’all get married? June 1, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? About 350
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Our cake was a delicious vanilla cake with a raspberry filling. We decided to have a small cake with other dessert options, like key lime tartlets and chocolate covered strawberries, made by wonderful family friends!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I didn’t plan on it, but I borrowed my mom’s ring, my earrings were blue, my garter was made from a family friend’s 20-year-old lace collection, and my shoes were new!
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our wedding had many Southern touches–the location was a family friend’s farm and the ceremony took place between the creek and a gorgeous field. Our families sat in old church pews that were family heirlooms. We ate gourmet barbecue and sipped on sweet tea and beer. We wanted our wedding to be a huge celebration with some of our favorite people. It turned out being the biggest party I have ever been a part of, which was our hope from the very beginning.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Sticking to our original budget was very difficult to achieve considering the number of guests we invited. We ended up going way over budget, and returning many unused decorations.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? The little things really don’t matter. Although my mom and I made almost ALL of our decorations (with help from talented friends), we didn’t even really SEE them. I guarantee you will be more interested in seeing your friends and family than whether or not the candles were put out correctly. You will have a much more enjoyable time planning if you choose not to sweat the small stuff.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are now living in Auburn, Alabama, where Andy is getting his masters in Southern Literature at Auburn University. I am working full time at a local clothing boutique and am running an online women’s ministry I co-founded with an old friend. We are incredibly busy but love simply being together. We are so excited to see where life will take us next!

Photographer: Kristin Sweeting Photography / Planner: Dede Sceibe & Lavana Deal of Wedding and Event Details / Venue: Stonefly Farm / Florist: Color My World / Cake Baker: Dorea Johnston of Tis So Sweet / Catering: Providence Farms / Rentals: Southern Events / Tent: Action Tents / Restrooms: Royal Restrooms / Bride’s Dress: “Silk Taffeta Toscana Gown” by J. Crew / Paper Products: Anna Johnson / Hair and Makeup: Katie Anderson / Bride’s Shoes: Steve Madden / Groom’s Attire and Groomsmen’s Pants: J. Crew / Men’s Suspenders: American Apparel / Bow Ties: Tangled Ties

lisa Written with love by Lisa
20 Comments
  1. avatar Dana reply

    the pictures of them praying are so presh!

  2. avatar Emily reply

    Oh my word, these beautiful photos really give you a feel for their day! And I love their private dinner!

  3. avatar melanie reply

    oh my heavens! this is such an absolutely gorgeous day!! the venue is unbelievable…and her dress is so lovely and simple! you can just feel the love and joy. :)

  4. avatar Kyla F reply

    I absolutely love that Hannah embraced the rain! I often think about brides on those rainy summer weekends, but she is proof that rain cannot stop a beautiful wedding from coming together. Also, her ‘first look’ with Andy was precious. It makes me smile that they used that time to pray together and set their hearts on what truly matters. Thank you for sharing!

  5. avatar Lindsay Madden reply

    What a gorgeous wedding! AND i love how rich the colors are in each photo!

  6. avatar Emily A. reply

    Such a beautiful happy wedding. Kristin’s photography captured it so well!

  7. avatar Trish reply

    What an adorable couple! Beautifully captured!

  8. avatar Rachel May reply

    Such a pretty wedding!! Love the emotion!

  9. avatar Michelle Cross reply

    Awww what a sweet day! And the photos are truly stunning!!

  10. avatar Sera Petras reply

    Lovely work! I adore the groomsmen in suspenders! What a sweet first look, too!

  11. avatar Joyce reply

    Loving the vivid colors of this session!

  12. avatar wendy laurel reply

    love these! what a sweet wedding

  13. avatar Briana Marie reply

    Just love the images from their little prayer before the ceremony. So sweet! Beautiful through and through!

  14. avatar suzyb reply

    Weather mishaps or not, this weather is stunning from top to bottom. The emotion, the beautiful details, the stunning couple – everything is documented so perfectly! Gorgeous photography!!

  15. avatar Lauren Guilford reply

    What a beautiful wedding! Their venue is so pretty!

  16. avatar Kina reply

    What sweet emotion you captured throughout this day, Kristin!

  17. avatar Nicole reply

    Gorgeous images!

  18. avatar ashleykelemen reply

    This is such a beautiful, moody wedding! Gorgeous work.

  19. avatar Hannah + Andy | Wedding | Music, Wedding, and Editorial Photographer | Nashville, Chicago, Paris | Film Photography reply

    […] Southern Weddings Magazine for featuring this […]

  20. avatar Lavana Deal reply

    Lisa, this article is beautifully written; thank you for posting it! The attitude of everyone at this wedding was AMAZING!! The rain did not deter anyone from having a fantastic day!
    I am one of the planners & DOC and Would appreciate it if you would consider linking my name/business name to my website in the credits?
    Thank you,
    All the best,
    Lavana Deal
    Wedding Planner
    Wedding and Event Details
    http://www.weddingandeventdetails.com

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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