Southern Weddings

Tag: late night snack

Y’all know all about the Sweet Tea Society, but you may be slightly less familiar with the Southern Weddings mission statement. It’s posted all over our office, so it’s something that’s always at the forefront of our minds. It goes like this: “Our mission is to inspire brides to cultivate a life full of love–celebrating their families, the culture of the South, and what matters most to them–and then to draw from that rich well to create a meaningful beginning to married life.” Reading through Toree and Forrest’s interview, I could hardly believe how much they brought this exact mission to life. From the farm-turned-venue that has been in Torree’s family for generations, to the “call to community” Forrest’s father made during their ceremony, to the oh-so-Southern “front porch” of their reception tent, and more, every moment and detail celebrated their families and overflowed with love.

Thank you so much to Mary Rosenbaum for sharing Toree and Forrest’s beautiful wedding with us!

When I started looking for wedding dresses, I wanted lace, a keyhole back, and straps or sleeves. We went to several different shops and found a few dresses that I liked, but none that screamed “That’s it!” My mom and I made a couple more appointments for the next weekend, and in the meantime I tried on her wedding dress. I loved the lace bolero she wore! We wound up going back to Olia Zavozina, where I had tried on a simple dress. I fell in love with it when I learned they would be able to incorporate the lace from my mom’s wedding dress onto mine.

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Yes, we did! Forrest and I wanted to have some time alone together before the ceremony. It was a sweet time to calm our nerves and reflect on what the whole day was about. Also, seeing each other first allowed us to take most of the pictures before the ceremony. We wanted to make sure we didn’t miss any part of the reception we had been planning for so long.

We got married on my family’s farm, so it was very special to us! I grew up going to the farm, and in the recent years, I had often thought about how pretty it would be to get married out there. The part of the farm where we got married came through my dad’s paternal grandmother. She was born there and the ceremony took place in the orchard where she played as a little girl. My grandfather was the only child of four who stayed and carried on the farming tradition. My grandfather passed away in 1987 and the farm was rented out because no one lived there at that time. My dad purchased the farm back in 2011, in less than pristine condition. I didn’t know if it would be a possible venue, because the only structures on the farm were a century-old barn and my great-grandmother’s house that had not been occupied since 1940, but my parents embraced the idea of a farm wedding, and from then on, it was a team effort. The countless weekends and hours my parents, brothers, and friends spent working on the farm made the idea possible. Being married on the family farm embodied the ideas of legacy and community that we wanted to emphasize on our wedding day.

We didn’t have a specific Scripture reading, but Forrest’s dad led a charge to community. He explained the importance of community and how each guest at the wedding played a part in shaping who each of us is. He made statements such as “If you were at the hospital when Toree or Forrest was born, please stand up” or “If you went to school with Toree or Forrest, please stand up.” By the end of the statements, every guest was was standing and we sang a congregational hymn, “In Christ Alone.” It was a beautiful testimony to how blessed we are by the people in our lives.

Oh y’all…the next two pictures make my heart leap! So beautiful.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? I think the whole wedding was Southern! The wedding took place on the family farm. Our love story was written (in short) on barn wood leading up to the wedding site. The guests were brought up to the ceremony site by hay trailers covered in quilts and pulled by my dad’s antique Ford tractor. The drink bar was made out of barn wood and we served lavender lemonade and sweet tea. Passed hors d’oeuvres included mini BLTs and sweet potato biscuits with country ham. There was a “front porch” on the tent. Dinner was a buffet of Southern fare, including squash casserole, farmer’s green salad, homegrown tomato and mozzarella, fresh seasonal fruits and berries, an assortment of homemade breads, and more. At each place setting, there was a monogrammed napkin in a burlap and lace silverware holder. The tablescapes included linen, burlap, lanterns, and family silver.

The wedding cake was white with buttercream icing. It was a round three-tiered cake, and each tier had a different pattern in the icing. We had to consider the weather when making cake decisions, and although fondant might have been the best option for the warm temperatures, I was not a fan, so the cake was the very last thing set up before the wedding began! The groom’s cake was a square, two-tiered chocolate cake with chocolate icing, covered in chocolate-covered strawberries, and it was placed on an American flag table. We also had cookies and milk as a post-dancing snack, which guests could also take them home as a favor.

What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? We loved having a live band. They played a variety of music that kept all of the guests entertained on and off the dance floor. From easy listening music during dinner to songs that had our college friends and grandparents on the dance floor, the band really made the party.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The Chinese wish lanterns! After dinner and cake, all of the guests came out into the field to light the wish lanterns. Guests worked together to light and send off the lanterns into the night sky. We watched them float up and across the farm until they blended in with the stars. It was a beautiful sight!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met in middle school and even “dated” for a week in eighth grade! We went to different high schools, but remained friends and kept in touch. We eventually wound up at the University of Tennessee-Knoxville together, and during November of our sophomore year, we officially became a couple. I left to study abroad that January (2010), and we were not able to talk, or even email, that often, so we kept journals. When I got home in May, we read the journals to each other, and it was amazing how similar our thoughts and entries to each other were! In the fall of 2010, Forrest and I found ourselves talking about getting married. A year later, I left for Memphis to begin pharmacy school while Forrest stayed in Knoxville. It was a hard year apart, but enduring the long distance proved our commitment to one another. In May 2012, the week after I got back from Memphis, we took a trip to the beach and he proposed!
Tell us all about the proposal! We were headed to Florida with friends for our annual May beach trip. Forrest and I got there before the other couple arrived and he asked if I wanted to go for a walk on the beach. While we were walking, I noticed he was being extra sweet. Right as I realized what was happening, he turned to me and told me how much he loved me. The next thing I knew, he was down on one knee asking me to marry him! I said “YES!!” Then, he told me to look up at the boardwalk and wave to the photographer (little did I know, it was one of my best friends), because we were going to meet him at the sailboat to take pictures. We went back to the house and got dressed for “engagement pictures,” and when we returned to the beach, both of our parents were at the sailboat! I had no clue they were in Florida! We went to the house Forrest’s parents were staying at to celebrate, and there on the porch were a dozen of our college friends and the rest of our families. I will never forget that day and week with our closest friends at the beach celebrating our engagement!
When did y’all get married? June 8, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 300
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? Yes, we wrote our own vows. Our favorite phrase was “I will pursue you with a love that bears all things, believes all things, and hopes all things until we return to the garden in Christ’s promised covenant.” Christ is the foundation of our lives and marriage. Our prayer is to fiercely pursue one another with love that endures the hardships of marriage. Until the day that we walk with God, Forrest and I will strive to put one another before ourselves.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. It was very important to us that our entire ceremony was Christ-centered, so all of the songs were instrumental hymns. The moms and grandmother were seated to “Come Thou Fount of Every Blessing.” “How Deep the Father’s Love for Us” was played while the bridal party walked down the aisle. I walked down the aisle to “Before the Throne of God Above.” “Be Thou My Vision” was played after we exchanged rings and while the congregation prayed silently for us. We walked out to “I’m Yours” by Jason Mraz. We felt like it was a good transition song from the seriousness of the ceremony to the party of the reception.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! Yes! I had my monogram and wedding date in blue on a patch inside my dress. My Jimmy Choo shoes were new. My grandmother’s rings were tied to my bouquet as my something borrowed, and the lace on my dress from my mom’s dress was my something old.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The biggest challenge was our venue. While it had lots of character and meaning to us, there were so many basic things that had to be meticulously planned to make it all work. From bathrooms to lighting to power to parking to food preparation, every detail had to be thought out.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We made several things ourselves and called in help from our friends! We made the silverware holders, the flower boxes for the aisles, and the favors, and we took old Starbucks Frappaccino bottles and turned them into personalized milk bottles. A friend monogrammed all of the dinner napkins. One friend made the chocolate chip cookies. Another friend split buying the table cloths with us so that we had enough for our wedding and then theirs. A church friend let us borrow mercury glass and another friend let us borrow burlap table toppers she had made. Many of my mom’s friends were there to help set up and decorate on the morning of the wedding.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Remember that at the end of the wedding, you will be married, and that is the most important part of the entire event!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We look forward to writing our own story through shared hobbies, outdoor adventures, and having out best friend as our roommate! Forrest is looking to start his career as an intern architect and I will be finishing my last year of pharmacy school at the University of Tennessee.

Photographer: Mary Rosenbaum / Videographer: Bryant Bural / Planner: Marcia Husband / Venue: Private residence / Florist: Cathy Miller and Jimm Wright of Spring Hill Florist and Gift Shop / Cake Baker: Barbara Owen / Cookies: Sandy’s Cookies / Caterer: Kristen Winston Catering / Rentals: Stewart’s Special Events / Lighting: Tech Works Decorative Lighting / Band: The Craig Duncan Band / Bride’s Gown: “Elegant Dream” by Olia Zavozina / Paper Products Printing: Coleman’s Printing / Hair Stylist: Premier Haircuts Cool Springs / Makeup Artist: Fern Lawson / Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Rhea” in Grey Ridge by Donna Morgan / Men’s Attire: “Traveler’s Suit” in Navy by Jos A. Bank / Ties: The Tie Bar / Bathrooms: Royal Restrooms

lisa Written with love by Lisa
12 Comments
  1. avatar Lindsay Colvin reply

    Oh my GOODNESS those purple bridesmaid dresses, swoon swoon swoon! Also, such a sweet line she shared from their vows, so touching!

  2. avatar Rachael reply

    Wow my heart is melting – the photography i just gorgeous – way to go mary! Each photo is so intimate you really captured the emotion behind this day!

  3. avatar Catherine Grace reply

    Oh My Heart !!! That Bolero is gorgeous.

  4. avatar Emily reply

    There are so many lovely details, but the groom’s cake table might be my favorite – so perfectly Americana! And I love the late night cookies and milk :)

  5. avatar Rachel Nordgren reply

    Those lanterns! That lace bolero! The vintage tub for the drinks! Marvelous details, and that line from their vows is richly beautiful.

  6. avatar Joyce reply

    This is one of the best thought out weddings I have seen in SW. If I ever get married again I want a beautiful lace bolero like the one this bride borrowed from her mother. Getting married on the family farm…wonderful….and the music they chose! Just right! And I so liked how the family and friends worked together to prepare. May they have just as lovely life together.

  7. avatar Steph reply

    That’s my best friend!!!! You chose the most beautiful couple and wedding to feature. Just perfect :)

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A few days ago, Emily sent me an email saying I would die over this wedding, and she couldn’t be more right! Today I get to combine two of my favorite things – gorgeous Southern weddings and Alabama football (I know, lucky duck!). Lindsey + Michael honored their alma mater and their relationship with fun-filled celebration in the Zone at Bryant-Denny Stadium! Beyond their reception taking place at such an incredibly cool location, their cream and gold color palette made for classic formal Southern style at it’s best! High fives and Roll Tide to fellow Alabama girl, Kelly at Spindle Photography, for capturing all the awesomeness that filled Lindsey + Michael’s wedding day!

P.S. Don’t miss Lindsey + Michael’s highlight film by Hampton Road Studios, seen here!

Details weren’t as important to us as the overall feel of the weekend. It was important to me that the bridal party enjoyed themselves and felt like they were a part of something really special. The girls had a great morning listening to music, having mimosas, and getting their hair and makeup done in the bridal suite, and the boys got to kick back and catch up over cocktails and lunch at Innisfree. The day was meant to feel classic, formal, and fun for the guests. The vendors did a great job of transforming the Zone at the stadium into a cream and gold ballroom with draped tents, chandeliers, lots of candlelight and all white flowers. Guests could dance to Motown under twinkle-lighting, have dinner with friends and family, or mingle over cocktails on the balcony overlooking campus.

Describe your wedding flowers: Gary at Jester’s Flowers did an outstanding job. I gave him no specifics other than everything had to be white. The result was a mix of vintage roses, hydrangeas, and calla lilies. It was tasteful, classic and, of course, beautiful.

I instantly loved the quality of the materials and the construction of all of the Amsale gowns, but I especially loved the look of the tulle and satin Calista gown. It was formal, yet easy to dance in, so it was a must.

Gosh, I was not sure I can swoon more over this wedding, and now their adding adorable pups! I’m a goner!

During the ceremony and after the vows, turning around to face the crowd and being blown away by how many people were there for us. You could really feel the love in the room!

Perhaps the most Southern aspect of our wedding was the atmosphere. We wanted everyone to feel welcome and have fun. At the rehearsal dinner, speeches were limited to encourage mingling instead of tears. The ceremony was light and uplifting. The reception venue is a place that holds great memories for many of the guests. The band played music that appealed to both the young and old. We also knew that as long as we had fun, our guests would also.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert: The bride’s cake was almond liqueur-soaked with buttercream frosting and gold fondant lace trim. Mary’s Cakes and Pastries ordered special materials and put lots of time and patience into the cake. The final product was gorgeous, and sat under its own canopy draped tent and golden chandelier. The groom’s cake was a chocolate ganache reproduction of the Coaches Trophy (the National Championship football trophy) with a white chocolate football sitting atop. Mary’s reproduction was spot-on. We had fun cutting the cake, and guests had fun posing with it. Plus, it was delicious. It was devoured in an hour!

The theme for food was “fancy Southern food.” Many of our friends and family are not from the South and we wanted them to experience a great-tasting (and filling) Southern meal. Dinner was served all night using stations. The menu included fried green tomato BLT’s, crab cakes, boiled gulf shrimp, marinated crab salad, pimiento cheese tarts, a full grits bar, smoked chicken with white BBQ sauce, and a beef tenderloin station. After guests enjoyed the full bar for a few hours, mini grilled cheeses were passed around.

I can’t think of a better way to end the night then with some Alabama shakers! Congratulations L + M, and a big ol’ Roll Tide Roll!

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. We met in 2005 during our freshman year of college at Alabama at a fraternity party. Our sense of humor completely clicked. We went on a dinner date the next night and have been together ever since. There never really was a point where we decided “this is it.” We have known from the start.
Describe the proposal. Michael took me down to the beach on May 13 of 2011 for what I thought was a Mother’s Day weekend trip. On the way to dinner one night, he pulled into a parking spot and pulled out a ring. Our friends and family were waiting on a catamaran in the bay to celebrate with us. We spent the afternoon cruising and then celebrated all weekend at the beach with our friends.
In what month did you get married? June
How many guests attended your wedding? 400
Tell us about finding your wedding dress: I went to about 10 different stores in Atlanta and across Alabama but did not find anything that I wanted to buy. I am petite, very hard to fit, and extremely picky I finally took a trip to Bridals by Lori in Atlanta because I knew they had a large selection.
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We didn’t do a first look. Neither of us are sentimental! We had already seen each other in our attire before the wedding day. When I did my bridal shoot, Michael put on his tuxedo and we took pictures at our house, with our dogs, and around the UA campus. This was one of the best decisions we made. Those have been some of our favorite pictures so far and we would never have been able to get them on the actual wedding day.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? Ephesians 4:1-16. “Live a life worthy of the calling you have received.” It was fitting because it is uplifting and inspirational.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. The Lamb Family Violin Ensemble played the ceremony with piano accompaniment. Az Izz danced and sang a fun mix of Motown and R&B at the reception. They also played our first dance song, “You are the Best Thing” by Ray LaMontagne.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The biggest challenge was turning the Zone into a ballroom, for which our vendors deserve all of the credit. Specialty lighting played a large role, as it allowed us to transform of the venue’s fluorescents, which don’t allow for good pictures or ambiance, and give the room a warm, candlelit look.
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? A great florist and decorator. The best will create the best for you!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Also, the little moments with our family and close friends were the best part of the weekend. Most of them are spread across the country and we don’t get to see them often. Having our friends by our side made what could be a nerve-wracking experience a lot of fun. We were sad to leave them at the end of the night! The biggest surprise was seeing the finished product after a year of planning. We weren’t overly specific with our vendors. I had no idea how the church or the Zone would look until that day. Needless to say, our vendors came together and created something that exceeded every expectation.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Everyone has a different idea as to what makes the perfect wedding weekend, and that’s OK. The bride and groom set the tone for the weekend. If you both feel good about what you have put together and enjoy yourselves, your guests will too.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? The greatest time of the year in Tuscaloosa is right around the corner! Roll Tide!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
9 Comments
  1. avatar Deb Pare reply

    The Bari Jay #126 dress looks like it has straps…did you just order it strapless or is is a different style?

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  8. avatar kathy reply

    Could someone tell me who designed or made the gorgeous engagement ring?? I love it!!!

    • avatar Mary reply

      I would love to know the designer of the engagement ring. It’s amazing!

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As a Charlotte native, Izzy + Lane’s wedding is extra special to me. Their museum reception took place at one of the most notable landmarks in the city and although I may be biased, I think these images from The Schultzes accurately depict how the couple transformed the Mint Museum from a beautiful building into a space brimming with Southern hospitality and family heirlooms. After all, only the most thoughtful of hosts will provide nourishing donuts and milk to late-night partiers.

My three sisters, sister in law, mom and I all went to NY Bride in Groom in Charlotte to look for dresses. We each pulled a few dresses that we thought I should try. The dress my mom picked out was the first one I tried on. It was “Adela” by Pronovias. I went to a few other shops to try on more dresses but I couldn’t help thinking back on Adela. It was really special that I fell in love with the dress that my mom chose. It had cap sleeves and lots of lace. I couldn’t wait to wear it!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did! This was something we had experienced as guests at other weddings and we knew we wanted to do it so that we could get our photos taken before the ceremony. We are so happy we made this decision. The photos are some of our favorite from the entire day. It was such a special time for us to be only with each other and to exchange gifts. Even though he saw me before the ceremony, it was still great seeing him while I walked down the aisle too — so emotional!

Choosing the music was one of our favorite parts! For the processional, all 15 bridesmaids and 11 groomsmen walked down to “Cannot Hide my Love” by Enter the Worship Circle. At the climax of the song, the doors opened and I walked down, too. It was sung by some really special friends from college. The recessional was amazing. My twin sister and a gospel ensemble from University of South Carolina sang “Many the Miles” by Sara Bareilles as the entire bridal party exited. We stood in the back of the church dancing and singing until they were finished. It made everything feel so joyful.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We didn’t write our own vows, but our pastor was great about integrating our thoughts into the ceremony. We wanted her to make it clear to all of our guests that we are who we are because of them. Without us becoming who we are today, we would not have never fallen in love with each other and been able to start this journey in life together. We are so grateful for our family and friends.

I + L took a new spin on honoring their parents marriages. We are blown away by the display of their mothers’ wedding gown in their reception foyer. It was the newlyweds’ favorite detail and one that we’ll always remember, too.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? All of the food at the reception had a Southern flair. We had pimento cheese, BBQ sliders, shrimp and grits and a grilled cheese bar. When the bridal party entered the reception, we changed into cowboy boots so we could bust a move on the dance floor. We also gave out Krispy Kreme Donuts and cartons of milk as guests were leaving the reception.

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. Lane and I met at Furman University where we went to college in South Carolina. He was on my “brother hall” and I was one of his freshman advisors. We were friends for three years in college but it didn’t spark into a romance until my first year in graduate school. We spent the next three years driving hours to be together!
Describe the proposal. Lane had recently moved to Mississippi and came back to visit Charlotte, where I was living, for the weekend. We decided to go to his family’s lake house, which has been a really special place throughout our relationship. Sitting out on his back porch overlooking the lake, he got on one knee and popped the question! We then went to my family’s house in Charlotte to celebrate with our family and friends.
In what month did you get married? March
How many guests attended your wedding? 300
Describe your wedding flowers: I realize I’m biased, but Lynette from the Bloom Room went so above and beyond anything we could have ever imagined. My bouquet was filled with garden roses, hellebores, ranunculus, dusty miller and astibe. It completely matched the colors and feel we wanted for the wedding. The reception had several long tables and Lynette did a perfect job filling the tables with beautiful flowers including herbs and succulents. They were displayed in great pieces of pottery and glass. The flowers made the wedding.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert: Having worked at Edible Art of Charlotte during high school, we knew we were going to want a cake from them. We got almond and coconut flavors and the cake was rough iced with buttercream. Our florist added some fresh flowers to the outside. It was perfectly simple and delicious!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? During the entire wedding planning process, Lane and I were living in Mississippi while my family was in Charlotte, where our wedding would be, busy working on the details. Without my twin sister as our wedding planner, we may not have had a wedding! It was definitely difficult not being there to help stuff envelopes, make runners, and meet with vendors, but we were constantly in communication. Thank goodness for picture messaging and unlimited minutes on the cell phone!
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Having put so much time, money and energy into the wedding, we are so glad we splurged on our photographers and videographers. Both the Schultzes and Caravan did an amazing job capturing our day. The wedding only lasted a day but now we will have these memories forever!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? The first look!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? Lane and I are currently living in Cleveland, Mississippi working in jobs that we love. We are looking forward to enjoying our first year of marriage with the newest member of our family, a rescue dog named Rye.

nicoleyang Written with love by Nicole
9 Comments
  1. avatar Lissa reply

    One of the most charming weddings we’ve seen in a while! And when we read the bride’s account of the music and saw the sweet and gorgeous florals, we were definitely in love!

  2. avatar Lisa reply

    LOVE the Schultz’s~!! They do a wonderful job at capturing the moments through out the wedding day! I can’t wait until our wedding!

  3. avatar Tara W reply

    Adore the idea of having their mothers wedding dresses in the foyer!!

  4. avatar AshleyHH reply

    Beautiful, beautiful wedding. That church is gorgeous! A question for the bride… who are your boots by?! I love them and I am definitely wearing boots as my wedding shoes so I am already on the look out for the perfect pair. =)

  5. avatar Katie O’Keefe reply

    I love their church – beautiful. And how unique that they displayed their moms’ wedding dresses. I love that!

  6. avatar Melissa Vause reply

    I also got my dress from NY Bride and Groom in Charlotte! (and momma picked out my dress too!) The ladies at NY bride and groom are so sweet and the store looks AMAZING!
    Beautiful wedding :-)

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