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Jessi and Braden’s home is adorable, absolutely — but what I love most about it is that it is also so abundantly welcoming and approachable! These two have mixed affordable finds (Walmart gallery frames!) with treasured pieces for a cozy and warm look throughout their Greenville, SC Tudor. I wasn’t surprised at all when Jessi revealed “hosting is our love language” in her interview, below — from their kind hearts to their comfy decor choices, these two are clearly in their element in their home, surrounded by loved ones. I’m taking notes, and I’m sure y’all will want to, as well!

Fun fact: Jessi and Braden were reader models in last year’s Fore the Love shoot, so I’ve had the pleasure of meeting them in person!

The couple: Jessi and Braden Nichols, both 25
Years married: Three
Where they live: Greenville, South Carolina
Tell us a little bit about yourselves. I attended the University of South Carolina my freshman year and transferred to our rival school, Clemson University, at the start of sophomore year. The Sadie Hawkins shag was coming up, and since I was new to Clemson, I didn’t know many people, so I asked a friend whom I should ask. She mentioned Braden. With a little hesitation and fear, I asked him that week at a bonfire, and I am so glad I did! Sadie Hawkins marks our first “date,” if you will, and the rest is history! We dated for the remainder of our time at Clemson and got engaged the winter of our senior year. We had an eight-month engagement, which was a super tough season for us, and got married on August 24, 2013. We lived in a cute little townhouse in Mauldin, SC for our first year of marriage, and in August 2014, we purchased our first home in the heart of downtown Greenville. I am now a full-time wedding photographer and Braden is an industrial engineer at Michelin!

Tell us your love story in one sentence. By the grace and faithfulness of Jesus, we have been blessed with this life that we are so undeserving to live.
What is your favorite part of being married? While dating in college, it was difficult to balance school, friendships, and relationships. Some days would pass when we wouldn’t have a chance to see one another at all. My favorite part of being married is knowing that we can have quality time every day–our time together still has to be intentional, but we no longer have to fight for it like we used to. Now I know we will have time together every day, even if it’s just a simple dinner at our kitchen nook or watching Netflix together before going to bed.

Tell us a little bit about where you live. We are proud owners of our home. When looking to buy our first home, we truly wanted to be able to see ourselves there for at least 5-10 years, and we hoped to plant roots in downtown. We have big dreams to create a master suite out of my office space and our guest bedroom. We also have dreams of building a garage with a studio apartment above it, allowing us to host guests and to provide a home away from home for our family and friends.
Tell us about the process of moving in together. Once we got married, Braden and I moved into a town home in a small city about 20 minutes outside of Greenville. We transitioned into living together gracefully; we knew that it would be an adjustment and a learning experience, so we offered grace and understanding to one another. We were blessed with furniture from family members, so our town home was mostly furnished with hand-me-downs. Luckily, we were also able to use many items from our actual wedding to decorate. Braden and I have similar style when it comes to home décor; we both enjoy a warm space that feels cozy and inviting. My best advice to blending two styles is to truly narrow in on what makes home feel like home for each of you, whether that’s a certain type of furniture, lamp lighting, lots of cozy blankets, etc.

Which room in your home is your favorite, and why? Our living room is my favorite room in our home. Many people have walked through our arched front door and have spent time in this cozy space. Hosting is one of our love languages, and this space has offered so many opportunities to love others in that way. Our living room gets so much beautiful light–morning light pours in and it gets softer as the day goes on. I fell in love with the lattice windows on the front of the house; they offer some history and so much charm, something that can’t be replicated.
What most makes your house feel like home? It’s a cliché, but honestly, who I do life with in this house is what makes it feel like home. Sharing this space with Braden is one of the sweetest gifts. Around every corner is a little piece of what makes us us. The warm paint colors and cozy blankets, the constant smell of candles burning, our dog Sampson napping on the living room rug… it is all so us.

Where do you splurge and where do you save when decorating? My best advice comes from someone else! She told me to take my time and be patient, to wait for that perfect piece that I love. Simple advice, but it really made me slow down and think about what I envisioned for every little nook and corner in our home. It is a process to make a room feel complete, so my best advise is to save on the smaller décor items. I love to cut flowers or greenery from our yard to decorate our mantel and dining room table; I also love Trader Joe’s bouquets and eucalyptus to fill vases. I have found that I splurge on the bigger items, like our dining room table or the piece under the living room television. These bigger items stick around longer–not only are you investing your money, but you’re also investing in multiple years of use!

What is your favorite memory from your wedding? If I had to choose, I would say the moment I got to see a blindfolded Braden right before our ceremony. We chose to read letters from one another, and planned to do this around a doorway so we didn’t see one another. When I walked out of the bridal suite, though, there he was, my handsome groom, standing right in front of me with a blindfold over his eyes. I couldn’t help but laugh because I was so surprised to see him standing there! Seeing him helped to ease my nervousness, without having to compromise him seeing me for the first time as I walked down the aisle.
How do you remember your wedding in your home? As a wedding photographer, I am a firm believer in printing your photos and having them as little reminders throughout your home. We have wedding photos hung in our hallway, so each day, I pass them right by them. We also have our wedding album and our annual yearbooks on our coffee table. I look at them more than I would like to admit, but they are such sweet reminders of my favorite memories. I also have dried flowers from my bouquet and my bridesmaids’ bouquet, which can be found in vases all over our home.

What different decisions, if any, would you make for your registry if you knew then what you knew now? Honestly, I wish we had registered for more “fun” items, which sounds so silly. We thought practically, aiming to register for anything and everything we could possibly need to live comfortably. We had everything covered for the kitchen and bathroom, but did not add many items for our bedroom or living room. We didn’t focus on décor items or items that make a cozy home, such as blankets, frames, trays, etc., and I really wish we would have!
Who cooks dinner? I’m a meal prepper (pretty sure I just made up a word!), so I cook dinner for us most nights!
What is your go-to weeknight meal? Weekend meal? We are both CrossFit athletes who love a good workout, and it has inspired healthy eating in our household. Most nights, you can find a dinner of fish, roasted vegetables, and sweet potatoes in our kitchen. Recently, we have loved zoodle (zucchini noodle) dishes, such as healthy chicken Parmesan or basil pesto shrimp over zoodles. On the weekends, we love a good burger, brick oven pizza, or a full plate of sushi!

What’s your favorite place to find recipes? For a while, we loved making recipes from the Against All Grain cookbook. I still visit this book on occasion, but I have recently been loving getting simple ideas from The Traders Table on Instagram. Each post includes all the ingredients you need from Trader Joe’s, plus instructions on how to prepare the meal! So easy and takes out any guesswork–plus, Trader Joe’s is my favorite grocery store!
How does your family handle finances? Do you use a set budget? With Braden being an engineer, he loves a good spreadsheet! When we first got married, we attempted to budget by using spreadsheets and Mint, both of which worked well. We were advised to live on just Braden’s salary, which we do mostly, and to use the income from my business as a means of savings. With different seasons of life, this looks different. For instance, this year, we have traveled a lot, so my business income has covered most of those expenses. We check with one another before making big investments, keep tabs on how much we are eating out, and try to be mindful of how much we are spending, but do not keep a written budget.

What has been the most surprising thing about marriage? Honestly, I was most surprised by how much marriage reveals my sin and selfishness. As a firm believer in Jesus, I knew that I was sinful and selfish, but those things were amplified through marriage, which is super humbling. Every day, we have to extend grace and love to one another, and through this, we have grown in our faith exponentially.
What’s your best tip for balancing your relationship and other life priorities? We have learned to balance everything by communicating our expectations. Our families live in different parts of the state, so we have to be intentional and talk through how we are going to split time with each family over the holidays. With the flexibility of my schedule, I try to work similar hours to Braden’s. That way, we finish up around the same time in the afternoons. We also prioritize at least one date night a week if possible to ensure that we are having quality time, and giving ourselves the opportunity to be intentional with one another.

Do you have a favorite date night idea to share? We enjoy a simple Greenville date night each week. We love to take a short drive downtown to Tako Sushi, a super laid back sushi-meets-Mexican restaurant. We always sit at the bar and order 2-4 rolls (I’m craving a Greenville roll as I write this), and then we make our way to Marble Slab a few blocks down for some ice cream! Super simple, but it’s always fun.
What is one small way you love or serve your spouse? Recently, small acts of service have been my way of loving and serving Braden. My work schedule has been a little slower this season, which has given me more time at home, so I try and serve him through doing household tasks like laundry, dishes, grocery shopping, and meal prepping.

Do you have children? We currently do not have children, but it is definitely a dream to have them in the future! Since getting married, we have agreed that we would love to have 4-5 years of doing life just the two of us. We want to build a solid foundation for our family, and we truly believe that is built through our marriage. We are so excited to be parents one day, but currently, we have a two-year-old golden retriever who is just fine with being an only child for the time being!

This year, our family is most excited about… all of our travels. We have been blessed with a year full of jet-setting around the world. In March, Braden traveled to France for work, then in May, we traveled to Antigua to shoot my first destination wedding. A few months later, we traveled to Italy with some of our best friends, and then I went on a girls trip to the Dominican Republic. Wow, what a whirlwind! Our next trip will be to Jamaica in October to shoot another destination wedding and we are so excited!

You can follow along with Jessi at her website, blog, and Instagram, as well as the hashtag for their home, #thenicholscottage! Thank you so much for sharing your hearts and home with us, Jessi and Braden!

A little reminder: we’d love to hear from you! Our hope is to feature REAL couples in the South – not just folks who write blogs (though we love them, too!), but also your inspiring friend, super talented cousin, or neighbor with the cutest house – the kind of person everyone would love to “e-meet.” If that sounds like you or someone you know, take a peek at our Southern Newlywed submission page and shoot us an email!

emily Written with love by Emily
1 Comment
  1. avatar Lisa reply

    I love their style so much, but love their hearts even more!

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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While summer is the season for sweet tea on the porch, picnics at the park, and al fresco dining any and every time a restaurant offers it, fall is when we’re drawn back inside. Even though the weather in the South will let us hang out outdoors for at least a few more weeks, it’s never too early to start soaking up inspiration for all the cozy, indoor gatherings that are right around the corner! With football game potlucks, family dinners, and holiday soirées in mind, we rounded up some of our favorite dining room inspiration to share with you today, and whether your table holds two people or twelve, we hope it’s a joyful place to gather in the months ahead!

Tips for Hosting Friendsgiving, by For the Love of Juneau Photography

Erin & Ben Co. home tour photo by Jean Allsopp

Design by Studio McGee

Caroline + Clark’s home tour photo by Tec Petaja

via The Everygirl

Emily + Colby’s home tour photo by Apryl Ann

Design by Amie Corley Interiors

Abby + Alex’s home tour photo by A Bryan Photo

via The Everygirl

Shalyn + Drew’s home tour photo by Ever & Anon

Meredith + Beau’s home tour photo by Dear Wesleyann

Want more newlywed and home design goodness? Take a peek at our archives and our Pinterest boards!

lisa Written with love by Lisa

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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I couldn’t be more excited about today’s Southern Newlywed post, because the home we’re taking a tour of belongs to none other than one of the most beloved SW couples we’ve ever featured, as well as dear friends of mine! Callie and Jamie’s gorgeous RiverOaks Charleston wedding graced the pages of V7 almost two years ago, and since then, these two have been settling into newlywed life in a little yellow house that they’ve lovingly renovated and made their own. As was apparent through the way they planned their wedding, being intentional and thoughtful is a high priority for Callie and Jamie, and I’m sure you’ll see that clearly throughout their house as well!

Thanks so much to our beloved Blue Ribbon Vendor Nancy Ray Photography for these beautiful photos!

The couple: Callie (25) and Jamie (25) Davis
Years married: Two years as of May 3rd
Where they live: Raleigh, North Carolina
Tell us a little bit about yourselves. Jamie and I both grew up in Raleigh, North Carolina and went to the same high school (‘sko caps!) and college (go Wolfpack!). Callie is a film wedding photographer with Nancy Ray Photography and writes a personal blog at Call Me Callie. Jamie works in commercial real estate specializing in land acquisition. Together, we believe in deeply rooted relationships, that a joyful heart begins with thanksgiving, and that without Jesus, we are nothing. We love the meaning of marriage, the ocean, spontaneous dance parties, our local farmer’s market and travel.
Tell us your love story in one sentence. High school acquaintances who connected through mutual friends in college, dated for almost five years, and tied the knot under the oaks in Charleston, South Carolina. (I love our love story. Truth be told, when we started dating, never in a million years did I think that one day we would be married, but the Lord had a different plan and I am so grateful.)

Do you rent or own? What are your hopes and plans for the future in this area? Tell us a little bit about where you live. We own our little yellow house, as it was a gift to us from Jamie’s uncle. It is the most generous gift we have ever received and has forever changed the way that we view giving generously, living everyday with a thankful and humble heart, and why we feel so strongly about hospitality and allowing our home to be a place to serve others and The Lord. (You can read the full story here.) It was built in 1952 and we quickly realized it was a real fixer upper. Soon after we got engaged, we began dreaming, drawing, and planning some possible renovations for our little house. Two months after getting married, we moved into our newly renovated home. This house is so special to us after all the work that we put into it and I never want to leave, but I knew that when I married a man working in real estate that that wouldn’t be the case for us. Our future plans include buying another fixer upper or building a house from scratch and investing in rental properties.

What most makes your house feel like home? I think we could live anywhere as long as we were together. I know this to be true because when we first moved into our house, it looked far from this. We barely owned any furniture or decor, and it took two years to make our house look like the way it does in these pictures. I had frames that were hanging on our walls without pictures in them because I was too indecisive, and for awhile, we had a mismatch of seating in our family room, but that didn’t change the way that our house felt. Coming home to each other and maintaining a posture of open hands with our home is what matters most. 

Where do you splurge and where do you save when decorating? What are some of your favorite sources for home things? We decided to splurge on bigger pieces like our L-shaped couch and our bed frame, knowing that we will hopefully keep these pieces for years. Just like my grandmother has always taught me: you know you’re meant to have something if you leave it in the store and continue to think about it. I remember going into the store countless times and looking at pictures of these pieces online before making the purchases. I wanted to be 100 percent sure that I would love them for a long time if we were going to be spending more money on them! So far, they have been my favorite purchases! I love Home Goods, Target, West Elm, Ikea, and PotteryBarn.

Which items from your wedding registry do you use the most often? We love our everyday china from Crate and Barrel. I remember standing in the store contemplating whether or not to add the weird pasta low bowls to our registry. “We’ll never use those,” I remember saying to Jamie, but he thought otherwise, so we added them, and I’m so glad that we did! No matter what we are eating, we grab the pasta low bowls out of our cabinet over a plate or bowl almost every time! If you haven’t already, you should totally add these to your registry because they will change your dining experience :)

What is your favorite memory from your wedding? Goodness, it’s hard to pick just one! The private moments throughout the day–praying around a door moments before our ceremony, our dockside dinner, and the boat ride after leaving our reception.
How do you remember your wedding in your home? (Pictures, mementos, etc.) As a wedding photographer, I believe you can never have enough wedding pictures displayed in your home! In the everyday hustle and bustle of life, it’s easy to forget that joyful day, and we recently decided that we want a daily reminder of the commitment that we made to each other as we walk through the rooms of our home. We also have things throughout our home from our wedding day–hemstitch cocktail napkins on our bar cart, the x-back chairs that our guests sat in in our dining room, lanterns that lined the dock by our fireplace, our cake server and knife in our china cabinet, and our guest book Bible that floats throughout our home as we read it in different rooms.

Who cooks dinner? We love to cook together! Jamie usually handles the meat and anything on the grill, while I usually handle the sides.
What is your go-to weeknight meal? Weekend meal? Our go-to weeknight meal is tacos. We almost always have ingredients on hand that can be transformed into tacos. Whether it’s planned ahead and we do shredded chicken in the crockpot or blackened shrimp, we love tacos in all shapes and forms! Our go-to weekend meal is probably something on the grill–burgers or chicken. We love to entertain and have people over to our house, so it’s an easy thing to fix, and it can be paired with any potluck sides that people bring!

What’s your favorite place to find recipes? This year, Jamie and I acknowledged that we’re not the best when it comes to following recipes. To be honest, I’m somewhat of a picky eater and we always end up modifying the recipes that we try. We do better when we try to recreate something we’ve eaten in a restaurant or just pull things together based on what we’ve got in our fridge. However, this month, we tried a week of Hello Fresh and it was really fun!

Tell us about the process of moving in together. Do you have any tips for blending your two styles? Moving in together after we got married was really fun. When we got married, we were in the middle of renovating our little house. Believe it or not, when we got back from our honeymoon, my parents picked us up from the airport and we moved right in with them! It wasn’t ideal, but it was a major blessing. Our house still had two months until it was going to be complete, and with both of our parents living in Raleigh, it felt silly to try and find a place to rent for only two months. When we finally moved into our renovated house, it immediately felt like home. After two years of decorating, finalizing projects, and making it ours, it still feels like home. What we have learned most through this project is that stuff doesn’t make a house a home. Blending our two styles was really fun and easy because knowing what we know, we didn’t take it so seriously. After planning a wedding together, we had a good understanding of each other’s style and what we wanted our house to look and feel like. We wanted to fill our home with things that we love, or that remind us of what we love. We both love the ocean, which is why our home is filled with images and a color palette that reminds of us it–neutrals mixed with bold textures and cool colors. We also both love to be outside, which is why we tried to bring outside in as much as we could–yes, I’ve become an indoor plant lady and I love it! I believe that there are no rules when it comes to designing or decorating your home. Fill it with what both of you love! Mix patterns and textures and play around with a color palette until you make it work! The effort is worth it for both of you to come home to place that feels like a place of rest and comfort.

What is your favorite part of being married? Our friendship. We love to spend time together, whether it’s on vacation exploring somewhere new or cuddling up on the couch to watch Netflix. Jamie makes me laugh harder than anyone else–think dance parties while brushing his teeth, talking to me in funny accents, making up lyrics to songs, and neverending selfie videos of him singing. He makes our life so light and fun. I love that we get to a be a team, cheering each other on through the ups and downs, and working together toward a common goal. I love that we are becoming sanctified by being together.
What has been the most surprising thing about marriage? Before we were married, I knew that our life together would be a big adventure, but what I didn’t realize is just how much we would enjoy the simple things–coming home to each other after a long day of work, cooking dinner together, walking our sweet pup, tending to our garden, and doing yard work. 

What’s your best tip for balancing your relationship and other life priorities (work, personal time, extended family, etc.)? Invite each other in. Whether it’s your work, your hobbies, or your goals, invite your spouse into those things and do them together. Jamie and I have discovered this year what this means for us and our marriage. We made time in our busy schedules to train for and run a half marathon together and spent tons of time in our backyard building a chicken coop from scratch. We’re not perfect, but we constantly strive to prioritize each other.
What is one small way you love or serve your spouse? Jamie: Asking Callie, “How can I serve you today?” Callie: Texting Jamie during the day to tell him that I love him and ask how his day is going.

Is there anything else about your home or family life that you think our readers would be interested in? If you know me, you know that one of my dreams is to live on a farm or a large piece of land. Although we can’t make that dream happen right now, we decided to bring a little bit of farm life to our urban backyard by building a chicken coop! Jamie and I built our backyard chicken coop from scratch in August (it was quite the adventure!) and added five hens to our family! In a couple months, we should be getting fresh eggs every day and we are so excited!

Thank you so much for sharing your hearts and home with us, Callie and Jamie! Follow along with them here:
Callie’s blog | Callie’s photography | Callie’s Instagram | Jamie’s Instagram

A little reminder: we’d love to hear from you! Our hope is to feature REAL couples in the South – not just folks who write blogs (though we love them, too!), but also your inspiring friend, super talented cousin, or neighbor with the cutest house – the kind of person everyone would love to “e-meet.” If that sounds like you or someone you know, take a peek at our Southern Newlywed submission page and shoot us an email!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Robyn Van Dyke reply

    Love the house tour but love their hearts even more!

  2. avatar Elizabeth Maxwell reply

    Absolutely love this precious post!! And the images are gorgeous. Is there a way different furniture pieces/decor can be linked so that others can find them? Thank you!

  3. avatar McKenzie Fussell reply

    Absolutely loved Callie and Jamie’s sweet house! So much cuteness! xo, McKenzie

  4. avatar Callie and Jamie Film Home Tour | Nancy Ray Photography reply

    […] thanks to Southern Weddings for featuring their home tour! Click here to see the full feature and […]

  5. avatar 929 Home Tour Part Two | Call me Callie reply

    […] thanks to Southern Weddings for featuring our home tour! Click here to see the full feature and read our Southern Newlywed […]

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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