Southern Weddings

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2015 Most Memorable: Sweets

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Just as guests everywhere eagerly anticipate the revealing of the wedding cake at the end of the party, so, too, do the Southern Weddings gals eagerly scan submissions for gorgeous confections! Whether they took the form of a homemade spread or a tower of traditional tiers, we featured some to-die-for desserts this year. Here are ten of our favorites!

Caroline and Luke’s peony, succulent, and ranunculus bedecked cake by Jim Smeal (photo by Courtney Dox)

Jessica and Michael’s gold foil and peony cake by Sugar Bee Sweets set atop pink glitter linens (photo by Tracy Enoch)

Anna and Nathan’s naked cake with fresh strawberries (photo by Chris Isham)

Caroline and Will’s classic almond cake with buttercream icing by Couture Cakes (photo by Ali Harper)

Amy and Brian’s gold dusted and coral charm peony wedding cake by Ella’s Cakes (photo by Set Free Photography)

Hanna and Nick’s dessert spread by Layered Bake Shop including blueberry galettes, baked honey and walnut pears, macaroons, and a chocolate mousse cake with a watercolor wash and gold foil (photo by Charla Storey)

Jordan and Dave’s cheeky flamingo-topped cake by Chocolate Pi (photo by Kristin Sweeting)

Jill and Mike’s classic red velvet cake by Bev & Rick (photo by Amy Arrington)

Rachel and Brett’s donut tower by Harold’s Doughnuts (photo by Scott Patrick Myers)

Mary Grace and Jason’s armadillo groom’s cake by Elegant Temptations (photo by Flora + Fauna)

Whitney and Parker’s towering classic white cake by Simon Lee Bakery (photo by Jennifer Lindberg)

Courtney Dox, Chris Isham, Tracy Enoch, Sugar Bee Sweets, and Amy Arrington are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

emily Written with love by Emily
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In our interview, we ask our sweet couples what makes their wedding Southern, and today’s answer may be one of my favorites! There’s the monogram cummerbunds (!!), gorgeous all-white florals from James Farmer, Catherine’s classic lace stunner and TJ‘s white dinner jacket, but I’d have to agree with Catherine that the most Southern aspect was the Piedmont Driving Club! Of course, it’s a lovely location, but the coolest part is that the press party for the premiere of Gone With the Wind was held in the same ballroom! Um, what?! GWTW is an absolute staple in any Southern girl’s movie collection!

Big thanks to Kate Belle for sharing such a fab day!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? Both the ceremony and the reception were held at the Piedmont Driving Club, where I had grown up, and where TJ and I are both members. In our opinion, it is the most beautiful venue in Atlanta for a formal occasion.

Susan and Campbell at Joan Pillow pulled a new arrival for me to try on prior to my appointment. It was the second dress I tried on, and was only made more beautiful when I had the opportunity to meet with the designer behind Ulla Maija, Charles Bunstein II, who personally designed a custom overlay top and helped with the fitting and styling.

Now that’s a true Southern crew of groomsmen! Great choice on the white dinner jacket, TJ!

TJ insisted on wearing a white dinner jacket (even in January), which I suppose is quite Southern of him. Doyle Johnson of A.D. Mathis in Gainesville, GA tailored a custom jacket for him and it was very sharp. They even used a swatch of my dress as a reference to make sure it would be a perfect match. The most Southern thing about the wedding, however, was the venue. The Piedmont Driving Club was founded in 1887 and the beautiful original architecture in the main clubhouse and ballroom are extremely special and significant. The press party for the premiere of the movie “Gone With the Wind” was held in the same ballroom which was designed by Hentz, Reid, and Adler.

Our designers at James Farmer Designs transformed the Piedmont Driving Club into a dreamy winter wonderland. The ceremony site in the courtyard was simply breathtaking! Large, white temple jars were full of greenery, flowers and winter branches, and hurricane globes were filled with white hydrangeas, lime green cymbidium orchids, roses, and amaryllis. The white aisle runner was lined with a fresh asparagus fern garland down the length of the tent. The bridesmaids all carried bouquets of mixed roses and hydrangea, and my bouquet was all white David Austin roses. At the reception were trees in large planter boxes anchored at each column. The tables were adorned with low arrangements of creamy garden roses, white hydrangeas, and seeded eucalyptus in silver mint julep cups (a staple of the South!).

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The trees! James Farmer and team knew exactly what I wanted, even though I did not know how to articulate it. I simply told them that I wanted the ballroom to look different. Trees lined the columns in the ballroom, and the up-lighting created the most beautiful look and feel to the room. The ballroom was transformed, and even my dad noticed and was pleased!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. I do not like cake, but my mother insisted that TJ deserved a cake. The pastry chef at the Driving Club did a beautiful job, and James Farmer knew just where to place it and how to style it. While I never had a bite of our wedding cake, the picture of the cake cutting is one of my favorites, so thank you to my mom and James for insisting that we have one!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We both attended the University of Georgia. We had lots of mutual friends in college and were in the same circles, but never dated. In 2012, we were both invited to the wedding of our good friends here in Atlanta. Our dear mutual friend insisted that we go together, so TJ called to ask if I would like to join him. We had a great time and became each others’ go-to wedding dates until two years later when we attended our own!
Tell us all about the proposal! TJ had a full day planned for us on a Saturday in February 2013, which I believe was set to begin around 9:30 a.m. His plan was ruined when I got up to leave my apartment at 8 a.m. to go to yoga. Instead of missing his opportunity, TJ rushed in and proposed in my living room around 8:15. Everyone’s next question is if I went to yoga, and no, I did not! We had a great day filled with lots of champagne toasts with friends and a surprise dinner party with both of our families that evening!
When did y’all get married? January 11, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 375
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did not. Having daylight pictures was not worth breaking tradition for us.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Since the wedding ceremony did not take place in a church, we wanted a traditional string quartet to play. It was simple and elegant, which was exactly what we wanted.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? James Farmer and Debbie Felker really assembled a dream team for this wedding, and TJ, my mother, and I will be forever grateful! No stone was left unturned and it could not have gone more smoothly or been more beautiful.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Looking down over the ballroom from the balcony of the bridal suite before we were announced. It was absolutely spectacular. TJ and I could not believe that it was actually for us!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Hire a great wedding planner! :)
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? TJ and I are adjusting well to married life. We have settled into our new home in Atlanta and are somewhat back to normal after the wonderful whirlwind of the wedding! TJ is back to working on building his business and I am enjoying my job in development at Skyland Trail. Aside from wishing we were still on the beach in Turks and Caicos, everything is great!

Photographer: Kate Belle Photography / Planner: Debbie Felker, Special Arrangements / Venue, Catering, and Cake: Piedmont Driving Club / Florist and Event Designer: James Farmer, Inc. / Rentals and Lighting: Tent’s Unlimited / Band: Adrian Duke Project / Bride’s Gown and Veil: Ulla Maija / Paper Products: Crane and Co. from Paces Papers / Hair Stylist: Tucker Fascula / Makeup Artist: Tara Young / Bride’s Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Bella Bridesmaids

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

    Those trees are amazing–what a breathtaking venue!

  2. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    Really a beautiful wedding! Love her dress and the bridesmaid dresses. The venue add so much elegance!

  3. avatar Sneak Peek | Rose & Anton's Wedding – Vermont Wedding and Event Planner | VT Enchanted Events Wedding Planning reply

    […] James Farmer […]

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As the last editor to share my dream Southern wedding, I’ve had a lot of time to think about exactly what kind of wedding I want (in my dreams, of course). I’ve been perusing the Southern Weddings Pinterest nonstop trying to find the perfect Southern inspiration for my own big day, and do you know what I’ve discovered? I truly and honestly believe that I have had an inspiration overload! There are so many fabulously Southern ideas out there, and I just want to incorporate them all into my dream wedding. What’s a Southern Weddings editor to do?

Step back and take a good long look at all of the images I had collected, that’s what. Were there any recurring themes popping up? Why, yes! The majority of the photos came from sunny daytime weddings, there were an awful lot of deep blues and spring green color schemes weaving their way through my inspiration folder, and oh, I have a major love affair with rustic barn weddings. Without further ado, I am happy to share with you my very own dream Southern wedding:

Image credits, clockwise from top left: Barn wedding by Jose Villa, beau bar by Chocolate Butter Bean (photo by Katie Stoops via Southern Weddings), cake by My Sweet and Saucy, barn decor photo by Abby Ross via Style Me Pretty, table decor photo from Martha Stewart Weddings via Domestic Ease

Tell us the basics. Where do you want to get married and when? How many people would you invite? The more the merrier! If money were no issue (and this is a dream wedding, right?), I would invite upwards of 200 guests and make it a real party. I would love to get married right here in the Ol’ North State in the early fall.

What’s your design inspiration and color palette? One of the main focuses of my design inspiration is the lighting. Nothing adds to a space like a hanging chandelier or a canopy of swinging lights over a dance floor. I also incorporated a lot of classic white details–the white bouquets and white cakes–which look so clean and fresh against the rustic barn backdrop.

What details and traditions would you include in your ceremony? I want to pay homage to my family’s Southern heritage by including many traditions based around family. I am looking forward to my strong, supportive dad walking me down the aisle. I want my Mom, a former makeup artist, and my aunt, a hairdresser, to gussy me up for my walk down the aisle. I am excited to shower my bridesmaids with monogrammed gifts to show how appreciative I am to have them in my life. I can’t wait to surprise my hubby-to-be with a fun groom’s cake. Most of all, I want to incorporate as many details that have significance to my husband and myself. I want my wedding to be a celebration of the memories that we have shared.

What dress would you wear? I have fallen head over heels for Monique Lhuillier’s Scarlet. The lace detailing is classic, while the open back gives it a modern edge. I’m still on the look-out for a getaway dress. I’m thinking short and sleek. Any suggestions?

Image credits, clockwise from top left: lace dress photo by Paul Johnson, white bouquet from Martha Stewart Weddings, striped bouquet wrap from Brides.com, navy bridesmaid dresses photo by Stephen Devries via Southern Weddings

What would your flowers look like? I love all white bouquets, full of ranunculus and big white hydrangeas. At the reception, I imagine low white and green arrangements decking each table.

What details and traditions would you include in your reception? Again, string lights and warm chandeliers are a must! In addition, I want a large live band that will really get the guests grooving. My goal is to have every man, woman and child on the dance floor having the time of their lives!

What food would you serve? Oh Lordy, I’m already excited about the food at my future wedding! Southerners sure do like their food! I adore all mini foods, so there would be an assortment of barbecue sliders and homemade macaroni served in white ramekins. The dessert spread would ideally stretch out for miles. In addition to the classic white cake, I’d love to see lots of cupcakes, banana pudding (a Southern favorite), and delicious creme brulee!

Where would you honeymoon? My hubby and I would explore Europe. I’m particularly keen on going skiing in the Swiss Alps!

What’s most important to you about weddings? Love is tangible at a wedding. Family and friends come together to celebrate a couple’s love. Weddings are about creating memories and sharing traditions. I love the feeling of community that surrounds weddings and I hope that my own wedding is full of wonderful memories and my friends, my family and my new husband and I will always cherish.

What do you think, ladies? Do we have anything in common? Let me know in the comments below and tell me all about your dream wedding.

P.S. Want to check out our past dream weddings?
Marissa
Nicole
Sierra

Katie Stoops and Stephen Devries are fabulous members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

Written with love by Whitney
3 Comments
  1. avatar Emily reply

    So fun, Whitney! I love that cake and the bouquet you chose!

  2. avatar MacKenzie reply

    Love, love, love a barn wedding, Whitney!

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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