Google+ Real Southern Weddings | Southern Weddings - Part 24

Southern Weddings

Category: Real Southern Weddings

One of the best things about planning a wedding in the South is that we have a few extra months in the year that allow for an outdoor celebration. Katie and Zach took advantage of this opportunity to bring their vision of an outdoor ceremony and a reception under the stars to life at their Tuckahoe Plantation wedding. To ensure that the weather held out, they buried a bottle of bourbon a month before the big day–with temperatures of 72 degrees and plenty of sunshine on their mid-October wedding day, I think it’s safe to say that upholding this fun Southern tradition worked!

Thank you so much to Sarah Der for sharing Katie and Zach’s special day with us!

We used every bold autumnal color possible in the bouquets and the swag for the arbor. The mothers and grandmothers carried smaller bouquets instead of corsages, and the boutonnieres for the men were made of succulents, billy balls and berries. The three bridesmaids wore different colors that all tied into the florals. It was mismatched, but still went together in our multi-colored palette.

Just for fun, I went to Bella Rosa in Richmond with my mom and aunt a few days after Zach proposed. The appointment was hopefully going to give me a good idea of styles I liked and others I didn’t like. Well, upon walking in, I saw a dress hanging up and said, “That may be my dress.” It was the first one I tried on, and it encompassed everything I had imagined for the wedding–it was romantic, vintage-looking, and classic, and the beading was so unique. I had never seen anything quite like it. I tried seven more dresses on, just for the sake of comparison, and ended up buying the Wtoo “Emerson” dress at the end of the appointment. It truly was love at first sight! The dress was the first piece of the puzzle in creating my perfect vision for the big day.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? We buried a bottle of bourbon behind the arbor at Tuckahoe one month to the day before our wedding. We had a 72 degree and sunny day, so we are firm believers that this Southern tradition works!! I changed into boots for the reception, and the landscape of Tuckahoe truly set the Southern stage for the whole day.

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did! Honestly, a large part of it was due to timing and the lighting in the fall. We knew that with a 3:00 ceremony, light was going to be running out after the cocktail hour. We also wanted to enjoy as much of the cocktail hour and reception as possible, so we wanted to get photos done first. Looking back, the first look was so special because it gave us an intimate time before standing in front of all of those people at the ceremony.

We wrote our own vows, and kept them secret until that day. We didn’t know what the other had written, and hearing them for the first time in front of all of our friends and family made the ceremony incredibly sacred to us. Zach’s favorite line from mine was, “I will always remember our love as it was on this day.” My favorite from Zach’s was “I vow to be yours entirely and forever, with no reservation or exceptions, today and every day, for the rest of our lives.”

Zach and I wanted to have an outdoor wedding in the fall–that was our highest priority. Next, we decided we wanted to have an open-air reception without a big tent. I found Tuckahoe Plantation by looking through other Richmond brides’ wedding photos online. My mom and I went to see it in January, and even in the cold, it was truly breathtaking–barren trees and all!

Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Our first dance was to “After the Storm” by Mumford & Sons. We are huge fans of Mumford, and this song brought tears to our eyes the first time we heard it on their album when we lived in North Carolina. That was such a wonderful period of our relationship and our lives; it brings back memories from the beginning of “us.”

The open-air reception under the stars and our long farm tables, so that everyone was seated in long rows, were two details that helped make our wedding so special. The weather could not have been nicer for October, and the open-air reception made it feel a lot more intimate than a tent. Our dinner was served family-style, so guests were passing bowls and plates of food, which felt so communal.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Despite growing up 50 miles apart and attending the University of Richmond together for three years, it wasn’t until our final year of undergrad that our paths finally crossed at the infamous Senior Toga Social. On that fateful September evening, I approached Zach because, to be very frank, he looked pretty darn handsome dressed in a white bed sheet. I had noticed him earlier that week in our mutual Acting 101 class, and a little liquid courage helped to start a conversation that sparked our relationship. As we enjoyed a magical senior year together, growing in love and trying to figure out the future beyond our diplomas, we were pretty unsure about where we would end up. After applying to companies and programs across the country, with a little bit of good fortune, we both landed jobs in North Carolina, and our story continued.
Tell us all about the proposal! Our landlord had helped create the guise that we needed to sign the lease for our house in the Fan. After lunch with Zach’s brothers, we found a parking spot in Carytown, and Matt and Dave quickly disappeared. Zach shakily took my hand and pulled me to the front doors of The Byrd Theater to “check out showtimes,” and at that point, I realized what was happening. Zach had had a few friends help him edit a video telling “the story of us,” set to The Old 97′s “Question.” It ended with a final super that read: “I’ve got a question for you…” After watching the movie in the place where we had gone on many dates before, I turned to him, and he was down on one knee asking me to spend the rest of my life with him. Cue me sobbing without a Kleenex in sight, and the balcony erupted with hoops and hollers from our families.
When did y’all get married? October 18, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 150
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Our family friend made three different autumnal flavors of cupcakes: bourbon maple bacon, s’mores with marshmallow filling, and apple spice cake.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I made origami flowers for the centerpieces, so we saved a lot on flowers. A family friend made all of the cupcakes as her wedding gift to us, so that was a large savings as well. Across the board, we looked for the most affordable rental options, without sacrificing quality. We continually asked ourselves “Is this going to change the look and feel of our wedding?” and, “Is this worth the additional money?”
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? Our live band was amazing, and I would not have traded that detail for the world. Zach knew Big Boss Man through his fraternity at University of Richmond, and they played their hearts out for us! Regarding vendors, I could not have been as stress-free without the help of our day-of coordinator, Amy. I was hesitant to spend money on a coordinator at first, but having her there directing all the vendors and timing was a tremendous help! I could not have been my own coordinator and still fully enjoyed every moment of the day.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? The most memorable moment was walking up to our reception as the sun was starting to set. Seeing everyone seated, enjoying the music and conversation, laughing and dancing, was simply overwhelming. I remember Zach and I looking at each other with the biggest smiles on our faces. We were husband and wife, and we were about to have an incredible party with the people we love most.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are so excited for our time together before starting our family. We want to see as much of the world as possible–we have already planned a few trips for 2015 and can’t wait to travel and make those memories together and with our families.

Photographer: Sarah Der Photography / Second shooter: Whitney Neal / Videographer: Two Cents Photography / Planner: Amy Lewis of McBride Events / Venue: Tuckahoe Plantation / Florist: Boulevard Flower Gardens / Dessert Baker: Peg Langdon / Caterer: Brock’s BBQ / Rentals: Classic Party Rentals / Lighting: Blue Steel Lighting / Band: Big Boss Man / Bride’s Gown: “Emerson” by Wtoo / Hair and Makeup: Annie Radigan / Bridesmaids’ Dresses and Groom’s Attire: J. Crew / String Quartet: Silverleaf String Quartet

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Sarah Der! reply

    Thanks for such a beautiful feature, SW!!!

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I always love when wedding venues hold a special place in couples’ hearts before they get married, and Camille and Austin reminded me that a wedding day can make a sentimental place even more special! Together with their planner, Shelly Fortune, Camille and Austin transformed Camille’s family’s farm into a venue for their beautiful wedding day, bursting with joy (and gorgeous blooms!). Now when they visit the farm, these two are reminded of their magical day over and over again! Heavens, what a wonderful memory to have!

Big hugs to Melanie Mauer for sharing such a sweet day with us!

Austin and I chose to get married at my parents’ farm, Three Fields Farm. I have three older sisters, and the sister right above me actually got married there in 2009, so I loved the challenge of showing the farm in a different light, as many of our guests overlapped. It is so special for Austin and me when we visit the farm now–we get to relive our magical day over and over!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. Two of my sisters, my mom, and I went to Cincinnati’s Bridal and Formal to shop for my wedding dress. Both sisters that went with me had bought their wedding gowns there, so I was very comfortable in the store. The same bridal consultant that helped me find my dress had also helped two of my older sisters, in 2003 and 2009! My dress was the first one I ever tried on. I felt so special when I put it on and walked out of the fitting room–it had a lot of drama and presence to it, both of which I loved. Since this was going to be the one and only time I got to wear a wedding dress, I wanted to look very bridal. My dress and veil definitely accomplished that!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Honestly, I never considered not doing one–it made the most sense all around. Logistically, we couldn’t hide from each other, because we got married on my parents’ farm, where there are no homes or buildings (other than the barn) for us to hide in. Also, everything is so close together at the farm, which means all of our guests would have been sitting and watching us take pictures, causing us to lose that sense of intimacy. Another reason we chose to do a first look was because we wanted to be able to jump right into the party after the ceremony and let loose! Lastly, I wanted all of us to look as fresh as possible for our pictures, so getting all of the formal pictures checked off the list within four hours of finishing hair and makeup was so nice!

When I was walking down the aisle (it was very long and on the grass!), I kept stepping on the front my dress. I started to panic, as I imagined that everyone could see it, since all eyes were on me. My dad kept trying to get me to slow down. Just before we got to the chairs (the actual aisle), he said to me, “Camille, slow down. You only get to walk down this aisle once in your life. Take your time and enjoy it!” Even typing it, it still brings tears to my eyes because it was so special and is so true!

Our wedding flowers were one of the most important details for me, as I love flowers! I wanted to bring all of my colors together in my flowers so that everything would look cohesive. We used ivory and varying shades of pink (from light to a bright raspberry), mixed with pops of coral and burgundy. I wanted the flowers to flow naturally with various textures, and to be noticeable–I definitely didn’t want them to blend in. I hung fabric at the entrance of the barn and had my florist create a green garland to line the fabric, which was the perfect finishing touch!

What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I paid a lot of attention to my rentals. Since we were married on my parents’ land, everything had to be brought in, from the chairs/tables/dishes to the restroom trailer and kitchen setup, which meant my rentals were going to be pricey. Anything that was decorative that I could buy myself rather than renting, I did, and it ended up being less expensive in the end! I purchased all of the lanterns, large glass hurricanes, and gold chargers, to name a few.

Raspberry (the color) and raspberries (the fruit) were present throughout our wedding–there were raspberries in the pre-ceremony, non-alcoholic signature drinks, in the pink champagne, the invitation ink color, the flowers, etc., so I chose a champagne cake with buttercream icing and raspberry filling. It was delicious!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Austin and I met in high school and were friends throughout. Sparks didn’t fly until years later (six years to be exact!) when I very randomly received a Facebook message from him, asking me to go to a wedding with him. My jaw literally dropped because it was COMPLETELY out of the blue–although we both attended UK, we didn’t stay in touch after high school. Occasionally, we’d run into each other on campus and exchange a quick, “Hi, how are you?” but that was it. Luckily, I didn’t have any plans and agreed to be his date. I recommended that we get dinner first to catch up, and we were the first ones seated for dinner at the restaurant, and the last to leave. The next day, my best friend came over to my apartment, and I specifically remember saying to her, “This is it–he’s the one!” Up to that point, I had always thought the saying, “You’ll know when you know” was so cliché, but I knew in that moment that it was true.
Tell us all about the proposal! Austin proposed while we were on a special Christmas trip to NYC. We were staying at the Waldorf (which should’ve been a giveaway that it was going to be an extra special trip, but I didn’t catch that one…), and he surprised me with room service for breakfast. When I lifted the silver dome on the plate, there was the ring and “Will you marry me?” written in chocolate on the plate. He got down on one knee and asked, and I said yes!
When did y’all get married? September 20, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 170
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? No, we chose traditional vows–we felt it was an honor to say those vows to each other that so many have said before us. They perfectly said what we promise and feel for each other.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My maternal grandmother passed away just a few years ago. She was someone I was very close to and missed very much throughout my engagement and wedding. I carried an old handkerchief of hers (she always had handkerchiefs in her purse!) that had blue hydrangeas on it. It held the place of my borrowed, blue, and old–my dress and accessories were all new. It felt as though a piece of her was there that day to help wipe my tears as Austin and I said our “I dos.”
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? I planted a small bottle of Woodford Reserve (since we were getting married in Woodford County, where Woodford Reserve is located/distilled) on my parents’ farm about a month before the wedding on a BEAUTIFUL day, in hopes that our wedding day would have that same kind of weather. We were so lucky and did, indeed, have that exact weather on our wedding day–no humidity and a high of 78. It was gorgeous! We also served a bourbon drink, an Old Fashioned, for our “His” signature drink, toasting to Kentucky tradition.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Knowing what advice/opinions to listen to and when to just nod, smile, and pay no attention! :)
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Austin and I are just enjoying being married and working on our home. We’re also trying to travel as much as possible!

Photographer: Melanie Mauer / Planner: Shelly Fortune / Venue: Three Fields Farm / Florist: Hide and Seek Design / Wedding Cake: Martine’s Pastries / Caterer: Apiary Fine Catering / Rentals: Purdon’s Rental; Bryant’s Rent-All and Fifty Chairs / Band: The Downtown Band / Paper Products: Dancing Pen and Press /
Bride’s Gown: Lazaro / Hair and Makeup: PinkLouLou Design Studio / Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade / Bridesmaid Dresses: Twirl Boutique /

marissa Written with love by Marissa
3 Comments
  1. avatar melanie mauer reply

    it’s so fun to share this dream of a wedding with the southern wedding blog readers! i’m particularly in love with this family…these sisters are stylish x 1000 but their style is eclipsed by their hospitality and love.

    camille’s presence makes any day great! warmly, -melanie-

  2. avatar Stacy {Woodsy Weddings} reply

    The invitations are adorable, love the color palette and the hand drawn map. They look personalized and thoughtful.

  3. avatar Alyson Luckett reply

    Can you tell me where she got her veil? I have been searching high and low for a horse hair trim veil! Thanks!

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When a wardrobe stylist/wedding planner is the bride, you can count on some amazing fashion choices at a wedding (hello, bow-back shoes and custom tulle sleeves!). Add in a floral designer mama and a horticulturist aunt, and you’re also in for a real show in the blooms department! Allann had always wanted to get married at her family’s farm, but the logistics proved to be more of a challenge than she had expected. After looking at other venues, Allann and Bill knew that none had as much meaning as the farm, so together with their families (and some incredible vendors), they hauled in everything they needed to create an elegant wedding in their family’s own space. I’m sure Allann’s grandfather, who gave tours of their beautiful property in his white cowboy hat, was tickled pink to see such a gorgeous event on his grounds!

Thanks to Kristen Kilpatrick for sharing this wedding day with us!

Finding my wedding dress was a serious task for me, because I am a wardrobe stylist and wedding planner. My mom and I went to every major bridal gown store in Houston, and I kept choosing tight-fitting, hourglass-style dresses–what I always thought I would wear. When I would put them on though, I just didn’t like how I looked in them. Our next course of action was to travel to Austin to shop with a few of my best friends, my stepmom, and my teenage sisters. As it turned out, my sisters picked out the dress I ended up buying. I kept saying, “No ball gowns!” everywhere we went, but they fell in love with a Lazaro ball gown and insisted I try it. It was stunning and so uniquely different–the layers of the skirt were made up of different tones of cream and ivory over a gold lining, so the gown glowed like spun gold. I designed thin tulle sleeves and had a custom veil made so that the dress had more of a fall feel to it, and so that I wouldn’t be as cold.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did write our own vows. We tried to write them weeks before the wedding, but both of us wrote the bulk of them alone the night before. I sat out on our back porch on the swing and was truly inspired at that moment to write my vows to Bill. I remember I told him that his arms were the safest place on earth. He said to me, “I promise I will always stand behind you when you need support, in front of you when you need defending, and next to you when all you need is a friend.” I was floored by his poetic words and I think they were the perfect vows for us.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was the custom photo booth backdrop my cousin and matron of honor made for us. She is an amazing artist and created an 8-foot-tall wooden photo booth backdrop, complete with our names, wedding date, location, and painted-on lyrics from some of our favorite songs, including our grandparents’ song, “Pledging My Love” by Johnny Ace. The wedding guests had so much fun standing in front of it taking photos, and some of our favorite wedding day pics are of us in front of the back drop.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? I have known since I was a little girl that I wanted to get married on my family farm. When we started to plan the wedding and saw how tough it was going to be to turn a family farm, hay field, small house, and barn off a dirt road into an elegant wedding venue, we hesitated and tried to look at other venues. While they were beautiful, they had no meaning to me, and I didn’t feel any connection with them. We decided we would do whatever it took to make the most beautiful, rustic, elegant wedding happen there in that space, where my great-grandmother could look down upon us. My grandparents, who own the farm with my great aunt and uncle, were so generous and patient with us as we took over their farm and morphed it into a wedding venue. It was so special.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Everything about our wedding was so Southern, from the landscape in beautiful Lovelady, Texas, to the dirt road our little white farmhouse is off of. Seeing my grandfather walk around, showing everyone the property in his gorgeous white cowboy hat was a highlight for me. We loved having Southern whiskey cocktails served at our wedding, like the Whiskey Ginger and Old Fashioned. The carnival-style cocktail hour was another fun thing that we did–we loved seeing all the kids enjoying bottle toss and balloon darts! Many of our guests wore boots with their suits and dresses, and we loved two-steppin’ to George Strait at the reception!

Our florals were done by my mother, Sage, who runs the floral design part of our wedding planning firm, Belle Soul Weddings. She is so creative, and my sweet Aunt Donna is a horticulturist, so the two of them created a stunning color palette and design. Our color palette was burgundy, cream, and different tones of green. The tables and ceremony arch (built by my stepfather) were my favorites. The green boughs were taken from cedar trees on our land, and we also added some seeded eucalyptus.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. My mother baked our wedding cake, of course! She also runs the cake and pastry section of Belle Soul Weddings, our wedding design firm. Bill’s favorite cake is red velvet, and I wanted a naked cake, so she gave us just that: a red velvet naked cake with barely-there vanilla buttercream icing. It was three layers and sat on top of a round tree slice that my grandfather cut for us from a tree on our land. She decorated the cake with grape bunches, cream roses, greenery, and our wooden Mr. & Mrs. cake topper.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. When we met, we were both so drawn to each other. We flirted for months and told our friends about each other. Finally, Bill invited me to a music show that a mutual friend of ours was having. When Bill gave me his phone number, I didn’t have my phone or a pen on me, so I remembered the number by repeating it over and over as I walked to my car. I put it into my phone and texted him right then! Our first official date was on November 7, 2012 at Raven Grill in Houston. We have been together ever since, and we both knew early on that this was something different and more special than either of us had ever experienced before.
Tell us all about the proposal! We were having dinner at Bill’s mother’s house in honor of his 30th birthday, and at the end of dinner, he opened all his presents except for one, which was in a huge white box. He pushed it over to me and said, “This one is for both of us.” I thought, okay, it’s something for the apartment. I opened it, and inside the large white box with tons of tissue paper, I found a tiny black ring box. Bill reached for it, picked it up, got down on one knee, and revealed the most beautiful diamond, given to him by my grandmother. He said some of the sweetest things I have ever heard, and then asked in a shaky voice, “Will you marry me?” It was the best moment! I felt so happy, so excited, so loved, so at peace knowing how lucky I was to have Bill as my partner for the rest of my life.
When did y’all get married? November 8, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? About 120
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Choosing the music at our wedding was such a fun part of planning. We even made a CD of the day’s music as a favor for our guests. We are both big music lovers, and have always have had a penchant for old music. I chose to walk down the aisle to a live instrumental version of Ray Lamontagne’s “All The Wild Horses” played on violin and guitar by our dear friends. We danced our first dance to Sanders Bohlke’s, “You,” an unreleased track I only know about because he did the music on an independent film I worked on in Austin. It was such a special song and perfectly fit the mood of the night.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Our advice is try to stay connected to what it is really all about: the two of you, your love, and your commitment to your life together. It is hard to stay present during all that planning. Hire a wedding planner if you can, and let them take the weight off your shoulders so that you can just experience the good stuff. Take time for yourselves to reflect after the ceremony. We stole this idea from friends of ours, but after photos, we had dinner alone on the porch while everyone else had soup and salad at the reception. Another thing I would tell brides is to hold your ground about things, even when your family might not agree right away. They will come around, or they won’t, but it is about you and your partner planning the ceremony and celebration that makes you feel good. Honor them and remember them, but stay true to your heart.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are both entrepreneurs and love planning out the next steps in our businesses. We are so excited to share these two wonderful families that we have combined, and we feel so lucky to have just pure awesomeness coming from both sides. We can hardly wait to start a family of our own and share that experience with our extended family and sweet friends.

Photographer: Kristen Kilpatrick / Videographer: Compass Initiative / Planner, Florals, and Cake: Belle Soul Weddings / Venue: Private residence / Caterer: Larry’s Catering / Rentals: Any Occasion Party Rental / DJ: Patrick Osayande / Envelopes, Programs, and Calligraphy: Nib and Pixel / Invitations: WJ Ford and Associates / Bride’s Gown: “LZ3215″ by Lazaro / Bride’s Earrings: Kate Spade / Bride’s Headpiece: Avigail Adam / Hair Stylist: Candice Hollub of Sunkissed and Madeup / Bride’s Makeup: Taylor DeClercq at Sunkissed and Madeup / Bridesmaid Makeup: Jen Marine Makeup Artistry / Bride’s Ceremony Shoes: Nina / Bride’s Reception Shoes: Michael Kors / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale, Dessy Collection, Alfred Angelo, Ceremony by Joanna August, BHLDN / Menswear: Tommy Hilfiger from Men’s Wearhouse / Groom’s Tie: Michael Kors / Photo Booth Back Drop: Jordan Ashby of Artsy Ashby

marissa Written with love by Marissa
3 Comments
  1. avatar Elisheva Golani reply

    Absolutely beautiful Allann and Sage! I loved reading what you wrote and pouring over the gorgeous photos!

  2. avatar Classic Wedding Invitations reply

    Gorgeous pop of colour!

  3. avatar Wedding Inspiration – The Wedding We're Not Having reply

    […] [1] Bridesmaids dresses in amazing fall colors [2] White mini pumpkins as escort cards [3] Color of the year for a reason [4] Wedding cake perfection [5] Still love this flannel and wedding dress shot [6] Beautifully lettered invites [7] Budget friendly and chic twig centerpieces […]

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