Southern Weddings


We’re no strangers to how many decisions are involved in the wedding planning process, but one thing I love about Morgan and Scott’s interview is how they intentionally made decisions based on their story and wove those details into their big day! For example, Moorgan’s family ranch has been a sweet home for memories over the course of her lifetime, and their decision to invite friends and family to celebrate in that place is Southern hospitality at its finest. You can tell by the joyful smile on Morgan’s face that she felt right at home, and we know each of their guests felt the exact same way!

Big SW thanks to Caroline Jurgensen Photography for sharing this beautiful day with us!

I loved my wedding flowers. I had lots of greenery, deep pinks, deep reds, and whites. There was a protea in my bouquet, which I was absolutely obsessed with. We had wreaths with red stag antlers and elk antlers hanging throughout the ranch. My favorite floral piece was the GORGEOUS floral halo that was hanging in the middle of the tent. All the flowers were so beautiful, and one of my favorite details. Kim at Bloomingals did such an amazing job!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? I have three favorite moments: getting ready with my mom and closest girlfriends, my dad praying over me before walking down the aisle, and seeing Scott’s face as I walked down the aisle and feeling an immediate wave of peace and joy.

We asked my brother and sister-in-law to read passages that have been particularly influential in their marriage. They chose Ephesians 5 and Proverbs 31. As we’ve entered the first few months of marriage, those verses have been the platform of our relationship.

We chose to get married at my family’s ranch outside of Waco. Throughout my life, it was a really special place for me to go and get away from all the craziness of life, and I got to share that with Scott throughout our relationship. It has become a really sweet place to enjoy time with family and our close friends. It was so special to get to share that with everyone at our wedding.

How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Because we had a very long engagement, we had a lot of time to prepare for marriage. One of the most amazing things we did was go to a premarital counseling retreat in Salado, Texas through Legacy Family. We learned so much about how to handle conflict, budgeting, good times, and bad times. We both learned so much about ourselves and about each other. I would highly recommend every couple do some type of premarital counseling prior to getting married.

We had an Italian cream cake with white icing. It was simple, with greenery and light pink flowers around it. It sat on a beautiful round wooden stand. The groom’s cake was red velvet with chocolate icing and the OU seal on top. Bobbi, our pastry chef, has been making my cakes since I was two years old, so that was really special for me.

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Truly enjoy the process and don’t get too wrapped up in the details. Also, try to soak in every second of the wedding day! Don’t be afraid to mess up your hair on the dance floor. It’s your day, be yourself, and have FUN!

Don’t miss Morgan and Scott’s wedding film by Ryan James Films!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Scott went to the University of Oklahoma and I went to Baylor University. We both decided to work at Kanakuk Kamps the summer after our freshman year of college. We met on the first day of staff training and got to know each other a little bit throughout that week. We both were hired to work the second half of the summer, which allowed us time to get to know each other even more before coming back to camp. I remember getting back to camp and seeing Scott for the first time in about a month and feeling a million butterflies in my stomach! After numerous early morning walks, a few dates, and many middle schoolers trying to set us up, we decided to give the long-distance dating thing a try. We started dating that August and I’m so thankful we did.
Tell us all about the proposal! Scott told me that he was going to Houston for a conference. Little did I know, he was actually on his way to my family’s ranch with a few of his closest friends and a beautiful engagement ring. Around 5 A.M., my sweet roommates woke me up with the very loud, obnoxious song they used to play to wake us up at Kanakuk. I knew pretty soon after hearing that song and being told to “just get ready” what was happening. While getting ready, I was handed a journal with a sweet letter from Scott. I was then driven out to my family’s ranch by one of my roommates and blindfolded at the gate. Scott opened my door, walked me down the road, and took my blindfold off. I have no idea what he said, but he ended up on one knee and asked me to marry him. I, of course, said yes! After getting some time together, we went to a party at my parents’ house with all of our friends and family. It was one of the most amazing days of my life.
When did y’all get married? November 12, 2016
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? Around 500
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. During our ceremony, we had one of my friends, Ted Moock, sing Phil Wickham’s “Messiah/You’re Beautiful” as we took communion. We also had “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough” by Marvin Gaye played as we walked back up the aisle. Our first dance song was “Forever Like This” by Ben Rector. Scott and I sifted through so many songs to find the song we wanted to dance to. We both love Ben Rector’s music and when we listened to this song, we knew we didn’t have to look any further.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I borrowed my maternal grandmother’s brooch. Scott’s maternal grandmother’s garter was my something blue. For something old, a ribbon was created from my mom’s dress and was tied around my bouquet. My something new was the necklace I wore, which was a wedding gift from Scott.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We’re living in Dallas right now and we love it! We are looking forward to traveling a lot, creating memories with our friends and family, and getting a puppy (preferably a lab).

Photographer: Caroline Jurgensen Photography | Videographer: Ryan James Films | Planner: DFW Events | Venue: Family Ranch | Florist: Bloomingals Floral Boutique | Wedding Cake: Bobbi Rudeen | Caterer: Eddie Deen | Rentals: Sandone Productions, Posh Couture Rentals, Perch Decor, Pendley Party Productions and Rentals, and Junk and Disorderly | Lighting: Absolute Lighting | Ceremony Strings: Baylor University faculty quartet | Band: Drywater Band | Paper Products: Crop-Paper-Scissors | Bride’s Gown: “Barcelona” by Ines Di Santo | Bride’s Veil: Ines Di Santo | Bride’s Jewelry: Tiffany & Co. | Wedding Bands: Cole and Co. and Gholson Originals | Hair Stylist: Trish Nesbit | Makeup Artist: Angela Karr | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Style 2957 in Burgundy by Dessy Collection | Men’s Attire: Men’s Wearhouse

Written with love by Jess Metcalf

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While the South may be home to countless beautiful venues, some of the most memorable are the ones that couples create themselves. In Marci and Ross’ case, the only place they considered for their celebration was Ross’ family farm: the same land that hosted their first date (four-wheeling in the rain!), their engagement, and now, their wedding day. It’s weddings like this that make my heart flutter a little, thinking of how many sweet memories are layered onto this land, not only for the bride and groom, but for the family members and friends who have walked alongside them throughout their relationship. Marci and Ross dream of someday building a home on this property, too–can you imagine waking up every morning among the same trees where you once promised your lives to each other? Y’all, it doesn’t get much more romantic than that!

We’re so grateful Taylor Dane shared this gorgeous day with us!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? The farm has been weaved into our story from the very beginning. It’s where we had our first date, got engaged, and may even build a house one day. We’ve also shared many memories there with our friends during college, since it was only an hour drive from Auburn. There’s just something special about that place that you feel as soon you step foot onto it. I never considered another venue.

Describe your wedding flowers. Since the venue was already so special to us, we wanted flowers that would enhance the natural outdoor setting. I described to my florist that I wanted a very organic and romantic feel, using lots of greenery and tones of blush and cream with accents in a deep wine color. I also wanted anything but ordinary. She hit the nail on the head! My bouquet was stunning and so were the rest of the wedding party’s flowers. I loved that they were all so unique. Each bridesmaid’s bouquet matched, yet they were all very different at the same time. My two favorite pieces, however, were the ladder we had hanging above our buffet line that had flowers overflowing from it and the flowers on the cross used at our ceremony. I brought a slew of ideas and dreams to Ginny, and she quickly grasped my vision and exceeded my expectations!

Finding my dress was such a fun and memorable day! My mom, mother-in-law, and all of my bridesmaids except one came with me, and we made a whole day out of it. The most important thing to me was staying within a certain budget for my dress. I knew that I could find a beautiful gown without spending an arm and a leg. My bridal consultant understood that and did a great job of only showing me dresses within the price range I gave her. While all of the ones I tried on were beautiful, the one I chose just felt so classic, Southern, and timeless, which is exactly what I had in mind for our fall wedding. It was modest, yet still feminine. I fell in love with the lace sleeves and intricate beading. It was also super comfortable, and when I tried it on with the long veil, I knew it was the one!

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? Yes, we did do a first look. As the traditionalist that I am, I was originally against doing one. However, someone explained to me that the point of the first look really isn’t about convenience and saving time with photos; it’s about having a moment on your wedding day to simply soak in what’s going on and enjoy some one-on-one time with your husband. When I began to think about it in that light, the idea grew on me more and more. We decided to do it in the woods where Ross had proposed to me. I could not have been happier with that decision. I felt at ease as soon as I saw him. We laughed and hugged and posed for hundreds of photos; it felt like the most un-rehearsed, real part of the day.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I’m huge on details, so it’s really hard for me to choose one. However, if I had to pick, it would be the canvas my friend calligraphed for us with the verse Ruth 1:16: “For where you go, I will go, and where you lodge, I will lodge. Your people shall be my people, and your God my God.” This verse is extremely near and dear to my heart because it was read at my grandmother’s wedding. I knew from the beginning that I wanted to try and incorporate it somehow, but when she unexpectedly passed away six weeks before our wedding, I knew it was a must. It hung in a tree that aligned with our ceremony spot so I would see it when I was walking down the aisle. It now hangs on our back porch and will always remind me of her and our special day.

Did you write your own vows? No, we chose to recite traditional wedding vows. We wanted to use the same ones that have been spoken for many years, the same ones our parents and grandparents said to one another, the same ones that you dream about speaking on your wedding day as a little girl.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? As we took the Lord’s Supper during our ceremony, our pastor read 1 Corinthians 11:23-26. It was important to us to profess our faith during our ceremony and give God the glory and honor He deserves. Taking communion in church has always felt emotional and reverent to me, but taking it on our wedding day as we committed our lives to one another was incredibly powerful.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Standing before the cross during our ceremony, praying and worshipping together with our friends and family. I had stood in that spot multiple times before the wedding, praying God would show up and that His presence would be felt. That’s exactly what happened. I’m so grateful for that moment when we could stand before the Lord and praise him for all his goodness and faithfulness. That was, without a doubt, the most important and most memorable part of our whole day.

We were both born and raised in the South and were definitely keen on reflecting some Southern traditions and values in our wedding. I tried to incorporate as many heirloom pieces as possible, such as the Singer sewing machine that my cake sat on. It was my great-grandmother’s and then my mom’s, and now, it has been given to me. My great-grandmother sewed many wedding dresses on it, including my grandmother’s. I also wanted to incorporate a part of my mom’s wedding dress, since she saved it for me (but it was a little too 80s for my liking). I cut some of the lace from her veil and tied it around my bouquet. In addition to those things, the food was very Southern. We had cream cheese and sugared jalapenos, chicken and dressing, sweet potato casserole, and my favorite, a biscuit bar with homemade blackberry jam, local apple butter, and honey. Oh, and one more sweet treat–moon pies! Since we got married in Ross’ hometown, it was important to me to include pieces of mine, so since Mobile is the birthplace of Mardi Gras, we chose to give out moon pies as our favors. Our guests loved them! Lastly, everybody in the South knows football is a big deal, and since Ross and I met at Auburn, we of course had to show some affection for our beloved alma mater. We exited to the Auburn Fight Song while our guests made a tunnel with Auburn shakers (the best part of this was seeing our die-hard Alabama and Georgia friends having to participate!).

Anyone who knows me knows I LOVE sweets, so the most important part of choosing the desserts for our wedding was the taste. We went with two flavors for the wedding cake: a traditional almond and a strawberry champagne, topped with classic buttercream icing. For the design, I wanted something more understated, but still unique, so we did two tall tiers with a plastered icing look, a wine-colored drizzle, and just a few florals. For Ross’ dessert, we again wanted to do something different, so we went with cobbler. He’s not much of a cake eater, and who doesn’t love warm cobbler on a fall night? We chose blackberry (Alabama’s state fruit) and peach (Georgia’s state fruit) to pay homage to our roots. Our caterer prepared these in cast-iron skillets and they were served in mini mason jars.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Ross and I met at Auburn our freshman year. Our two best friends, James and Hannah, actually met first in a class they were in together. The two then decided to play matchmaker and set us up. The first weekend of summer 2013, Hannah and I met James and Ross at Ross’ family farm to go four-wheeling. Despite the unusually cold, rainy weather in May, we had the best time together! After that day, I knew without a doubt that Ross was the one. What I didn’t know was that the farm would hold such a dear place in my heart over the next four years.
Tell us all about the proposal! It was the weekend before Thanksgiving break during our senior year, and Ross and I had made plans to drive up to his parents’ house on Sunday after church to have a Thanksgiving dinner with them, since we’d be spending Thanksgiving Day with my family. We were about 15 minutes away from getting off the exit when Ross’ mom called and asked if we would stop by the farm on the way and check on the horses. I found this to be a little suspicious because of the tone in Ross’ voice when he was talking to her, but I tried to convince myself nothing was up. When we arrived, Ross insisted that we go check on his game cam in the woods first. We drove to the fence line in the back on the four-wheeler (flashback to our first date) and then Ross suggested we walk from there. As we began to walk through the woods, I noticed the first picture of us nailed to a tree, and then the second, and the third, and so on. He had created a trail of pictures of us over the years–it literally felt like walking down memory lane. We arrived at a spot in the woods where we had always talked and dreamed about building a house one day. There sat a beautiful church pew adorned with one of his mother’s quilts and fresh pink roses. It was the most special, serene spot. We sat down on the pew and Ross pulled a laptop out of his backpack. We watched the sweetest video of all of our memories over the past 2 1/2 years while the song “Die a Happy Man” played. After the video concluded, Ross said some really kind words I unfortunately can’t remember. He then got down on one knee and asked me to be his wife! Sobbing with my head in my hands, I shook my head YES! After we sat there for a few more minutes, I asked if we could go back to the barn for me to grab my phone so I could take some pictures of everything before we headed to his parents’ house. As we were driving back down the hill, Ross said “Hey! Who’s that down there?” I looked, and at the bottom of the hill stood all of our friends and family cheering. I still tear up thinking about that moment. My parents and high school friends drove 5+ hours to be there, all of our college friends were there, his family and family friends…it was truly overwhelming. We spent the rest of the night at the farm eating, crying, and rejoicing together! It was the day I had always dreamed about and MORE.
When did y’all get married? October 8, 2016
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 200
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Fortunately, we started planning for marriage before we started planning for our wedding. We knew while we were dating that we would eventually get married, and that allowed us to be more intentional about getting to know each other. Before we got engaged, we read “Things I Wish I’d Known Before We Got Married” by Gary Chapman, which was really good for opening our eyes and making us ask the hard questions. Once we got engaged, we went through marriage counseling at our church and read through a couple of other marriage books. We also just tried to do our best to not be overwhelmed by all of the planning and remember to still date and have fun!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? One of the biggest challenges for me while planning my wedding was being so far from my mom. Since I was already living in Atlanta before we got married and she was in Mobile, she and I were about five hours apart. We made it work with lots of phone calls, emails, and FaceTime, but I would have preferred to have her next to me through it all.
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? I would advise those planning a wedding to evaluate all of the costs associated with “creating your own venue.” While I’d never change where we got married, I wish I had known from the beginning all of the time and money it would take to make it happen. I thought we’d save money by using a free venue, but I’m pretty sure we made up for it in the cost of renting generators, port-a-potties, shuttles, and so on. Just have a realistic understanding of what you are getting yourself into when you start planning. My second piece of advice would be to research your vendors and find people you truly enjoy working with. We were really intentional in choosing who we shared our day with and it made all the difference. It may cost you more time on the front end, but it will be so worth it in the long run.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? Considering we graduated from college, moved to Atlanta, started new jobs, bought a house, and got married all within a year, we hope nothing big is on the horizon just yet. We’re looking forward to enjoying this settled season of life and getting to build community here in Newnan. We also are excited to do some traveling together!

Photographer: Taylor Dane Photography | Videographer: CL Money Films | Day-of Coordinator: AK Events | Venue: Private Farm | Florist: Enemies of the Average | Wedding Cake: Sister’s Sweet Creations | Caterer: Dinner’s Ready by Chad | Rentals and Lighting: Goodwin Events | DJ: Nice Entertainment | Signage: Sunkissed Scripts | Paper Products: Haint Blue Collective | Bridal Salon: Ivory & White | Hair Stylist: Jaime Marsau Beauty | Bride’s Shoes: Steve Madden | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Annabelle,” “Aria,” and “Willow” in Mink Grey by Jenny Yoo | Men’s Attire: Joesph Abboud for Men’s Wearhouse

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Catherine reply

    What an absolutely heartfelt, gorgeous day! I love that they incorporated the Ruth verse to honor her grandma. Scripture is about the most timeless wedding tradition there is!

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I am quite an indecisive person, and even tend to overthink my decisions once they’re made (my husband would say that is a major understatement!), so I can completely empathize with Marlo when she says that the biggest challenge of planning their wedding for her and Greg was “avoiding decision fatigue.” With so many choices to make, from major decisions to small details, it can become overwhelming quickly. But, I love how Marlo and Greg reminded themselves to keep the purpose of their wedding front and center, and focus on creating a wedding day that celebrated their unique union. From there, decisions were made and details were created with intentionality and heart. One of my favorite details was their dinner–they wanted their reception meal to feel “homey,” so they opted for braised short ribs and Lebanese sides dishes that were passed around at each table. A little bit messy, and a lot like a big family affair!

Thanks to Ely Fair for capturing Marlo and Greg’s beautiful day!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. Just as I was warned, I fell for a wedding dress that didn’t look anything like the one I had pictured. I imagined myself in a flowy, romantic, beaded number, but ended up loving a fitted floral jacquard gown with a flared hem. My mom, sister, and bridesmaid gave it two thumbs up and I loved the unique fabric.

Our wedding flowers were creamy whites with bright pops of green and sage. I loved that the bridesmaids’ bouquets felt structural and whimsical, while the bridal bouquet was more traditional. We kept the farm tables low-key with eucalyptus runners with bright white accents.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We were married at Philbrook Museum in the heart of midtown Tulsa, where Marlo was raised. Having an outdoor wedding at an art museum felt really special. Philbrook’s breathtaking gardens were the perfect backdrop for the day.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: It’s impossible to choose! We’ll never forget dancing with everyone to Lebanese dabke drummers. Most people had never heard dabke before, so they just winged it! It felt spontaneous and unforgettable. We decided to string lights in both the dinner hall and outside where the band played. That made the whole atmosphere more casual, yet magical. We used a big coffee table book about art from Marfa, where we got engaged, in lieu of a traditional guest book. It’s fun to page through it and find notes from our loved ones. Plus, it looks great sitting out in our living room! Our wedding planner, Allison Craig, was a total lifesaver for coordinating details and executing our vision. Our table numbers were marble tiles hand-lettered with gold paint–we wanted to include a nod to our shared love of geology without being too overt. We wanted the meal to feel homey and welcoming, and braised short rib fit the bill perfectly! It felt special but not too fussy–you can’t eat short rib without getting a little messy. We included Lebanese side dishes to pass around the tables as well, which helped everything feel like a big family affair.

We had a dessert bar by Heirloom Bakery which included cream puffs, lemon bars, and peanut butter cups. We had a small cake for us to cut, which was strawberry cake with cardamom frosting, inspired by an amazing riff on strawberry shortcake from our favorite Indian restaurant in Houston.

Our first dance was to “You Send Me” by Sam Cooke. It was a surprisingly easy choice we made early on and we never thought twice about it. Our band did a great cover, and the vocalist, Aaron Brave, blew us away. My father and I grooved to “Stand by Me” by Ben E. King. The cheerful beat was perfect for our spontaneous dance. Greg and his mother danced to “Love You Like a Rock” by Paul Simon. He’s a geologist, after all! My dad also surprised us with an a capella group in the middle of dinner! They kicked it off with “One Fine Day,” and at the end, everyone broke out into “Oklahoma!”

Tell us all about the proposal! We were on road trip to Marfa, an artists’ oasis in the West Texas desert. We planned to sleep in a teepee, hike in a state park, poke around museums, and star gaze at the McDonald Observatory. Greg proposed on the foothills of the Davis Mountains just outside of town. We celebrated with hamburgers and live music at the Lost Horse Saloon.
When did y’all get married? May 7, 2016
Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We saved the suspense for the big moment and opted out of a first look. We’re so glad we did–it was magical.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? An excerpt from “Letters to a Young Poet #7” (Rainer Maria Rilke), an excerpt from “Les Miserables” (Victor Hugo), and “Pathways” (Rainer Maria Rilke).
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My shoes were canary blue and my sister and I wore matching vintage gold bracelets my parents gave us.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The biggest challenge in planning a wedding is avoiding decision fatigue. You make so many choices along the way, from major decisions like the date and venue to the most minor details like the color Sharpie for the guest book. Making so many choices can be overwhelming. We had to remind ourselves to keep the purpose of the day front and center, which takes the pressure off all the extra stuff.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We wanted the look of candles on the tables, but couldn’t have open flames in the museum. Most of the flameless candles we found weren’t convincing, so my mom poured her own pillar candles for us to use! They were large enough to put a flameless tea light inside and looked perfect.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? We booked our photographer, Ely Fair, and videographer, Anchor Heart Films, as soon as we settled on a date. We lucked out. They are both so talented but also kind and easygoing, and made us feel really comfortable on the day of the wedding. You end up spending a lot of time with your photographer and videographer, so it is crucial that you have a good rapport. The results were beautiful and authentic.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? In the middle of the reception while everyone was dancing, we snuck up to a walkway that overlooked the dance floor. It was incredible to take a quiet moment to witness all of our loved ones celebrating together.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Remember that the purpose of the wedding is to celebrate your unique union. Keep that in mind and let go of any details or traditions that don’t feel authentic to you.

Photographer: Ely Fair Photography | Videographer: Anchor Heart Films | Planner: Allison Craig | Venue and Caterer: Philbrook Museum | Florist: Lyla Sawyer | Dessert Baker: Heirloom Baking Co. | Rentals: Party Pro and Kahoy Studios | Lighting: LionsRoad Studios | Band: Full Flava Kings | Guitarist: Sean Al-Jibouri | Paper Products: Brown Linen | Bride’s Gown: “Aida” by Amsale | Bride’s Veil: Mia Bridal Couture | Hair and Makeup: Primp Hair and Makeup Studio | Bride’s Shoes: J. Crew | Groom’s Attire: Suit Supply | Groomsmen Attire: Jos. A. Bank | Invitation Calligraphy and Table Numbers: Kristara

marissa Written with love by Marissa

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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