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Hi belles! Our friend Stephanie Scholl has been documenting her wedding process for the last few months here on the blog! She is getting married on Saturday (!!), so this is her final post! Please join us in wishing her well! — Emily

Y’all, our wedding is THIS Saturday!! The next few days will be filled with our family and friends arriving to town, attending to last minute details, soaking up time with loved ones, and kicking off our wedding festivities tomorrow! Rob and I truly couldn’t be happier that we’re going to be husband and wife in a few short days, and we are unbelievably excited to celebrate the start of our marriage with loved ones on Saturday.

It’s been such a joy and honor to share our wedding planning journey and a peek into our engagement with you all, and I’m so grateful you’ve followed along! For my last post as a bride-to-be, I wanted to share what Rob and I are most looking forward to right now.

Ally and Bobby Photography

First off, we both are most excited to become husband and wife! As much as we’re looking forward to and eagerly anticipating our entire wedding day, it’s the bond and covenant that we make to each other, in front of God, our family, and friends, that makes us giddy. We cannot wait to be joined together as one, and we’ve tried to keep this the focus of our relationship and our wedding planning. I know the days, weeks, and years to come are going to be even better than I ever imagined because I’ll have Rob by my side as my husband and best friend.

He is the greatest blessing this side of Heaven, and thinking about the life we want to build together, the big and little moments in the years to come, and having him by my side throughout it all makes me beam with excitement and joy. I cannot wait for the moment when we hold hands and pray together around a door (no first look for us!) before our ceremony begins, and when I picture us meeting eyes for the first time on opposite ends of the aisle, I definitely tear up. We are both so, so excited for that moment.

Photo by Julie Cate via Style Me Pretty

It truly takes a village, don’t you think? Rob and I are surrounded by the most loving, supportive, and encouraging family and friends, and I can’t even fathom the feeling of having all of them together in one place – and celebrating us! A majority of our guests will be traveling into town from all over the country, and it’s humbling to know how many people are coming together to celebrate our marriage.

In addition to our family and friends being the best of the best, I also truly believe we have the world’s best wedding vendors. I call them my dream team! Many of them are close friends of mine, and their palpable excitement and joy for us is unreal. Thinking about the film photos from Ally and Bobby, especially, makes me weak in the knees – if our engagement session was any indication, then we’re going to be blown away by our wedding images!

Ally and Bobby Photography

The ceremony is the most important part of our wedding day, and we’ve tried to really focus on making it meaningful and reflective of our love – and most importantly, on Christ’s love for us and for all. We want to infuse our personalities into the details, as well as keep things reverent and holy. From our vows, to the song choices, to the wedding party prayer, to our pastor’s homily, to serving communion together as our first act as husband and wife… we are so excited for our ceremony and all that it symbolizes.

One of the elements of the day I’m most excited about is our ceremony exit! We’ll still be doing an exit at the end of the night, but we have a surprise or two up our sleeves for our grand exit down the aisle at Mr. and Mrs. Rob and Stephanie Shaul!!

I’m a wedding planner and stylist, so I’ve been envisioning our wedding and reception design since the moment we got engaged and started planning! I think I’m most excited to see my bridal bouquet and the overall reception design. When I think about Alana from Serendipity Designs bringing me my bridal bouquet on our wedding day… well, I cannot even imagine how stunning and perfect it will be!

Photo by Ali Harper via Once Wed

Our entire wedding design is so reflective of Rob and myself, and we tried to incorporate “us” into every single detail, as well as include meaningful and memorable details throughout. I can’t wait to see the Carriage House at The Merrimon-Wynne House transformed into our wedding reception, which will be like seeing all of my longtime wedding dreams come to life! We’re doing a reception room reveal so that I can soak it all in a little before our guests enter. Oh my goodness, the thought of it all makes me so happy!!

We are so, so excited about every moment of the day, really, but these are a few highlights that we’re eagerly anticipating. I have a feeling April 1st will be the best day of our lives so far, and I can’t believe our wedding day is so soon! My big goal this week is to truly relish and soak in every moment, to not worry about the little details, and to be present with Rob, our families, and our friends. Rob and I are so grateful for every bit of all this, and we cannot wait to become husband and wife!

Photo by Nancy Ray via Southern Weddings

Thank you all, from the bottom of my heart, for following along throughout our engagement and for your excitement and kind words as I’ve shared a peek on our wedding planning journey. I’m truly grateful and so very humbled for your support, encouragement, and well wishes for Rob and myself!

P.S. In case you missed a post:
The proposal
Venue and photography
The dress
Bridesmaid style
Engagement photos
The details
Gift ideas

emily Written with love by Emily
5 Comments
  1. avatar Annie – XO, Annie reply

    We’re having our Engagements taken this Saturday :). I’m definitely most excited about our Ceremony Mass this Fall as well. Have a beautiful week and April First!

  2. avatar Lisa Hays reply

    Best Wishes to you both! Enjoy your special day!

  3. avatar Molly Dansby reply

    HAPPY WEDDING WEEKEND STEPHANIE!!! xo

  4. avatar Bri A reply

    I’m sure the ceremony was beautiful! I’ve loved following your journey, Stephanie, and am sending you both good wishes for a happy, joyful life together.

    Xo

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Hi belles! Our friend Stephanie Scholl is the newest gal to take you through her wedding process here on the blog! Stephanie will be blogging for us every two weeks or so until her wedding in April. In case you missed her first post, be sure to check it out here! — Emily

The final countdown is here, friends! Our wedding is less than a month away, Rob and I just returned from our bachelor and bachelorette weekends, and all of the RSVPs for our wedding are in! I seriously can’t believe we’re in the homestretch of our engagement. It’s been such a sweet season for both of us, and we’ve grown so much as a couple, too. (PS: I can’t say enough good things about investing your time and hearts into pre-marital counseling!) I love knowing that Rob and I will get to be joined together as husband and wife on April 1st and that so many of our loved ones will be in Raleigh to celebrate with us! We’re so grateful for it all, and, of course, I love finding creative and thoughtful ways to express our thanks.

One of my favorite Southern traditions is the bridesmaid luncheon, and I cannot wait to partake in this sweet and celebratory tradition! Generally the day before her wedding, the bride hosts a luncheon to honor her bridesmaids and the beloved ladies in her life. I am ecstatic that I get to celebrate how incredible, encouraging, generous, and thoughtful my bridesmaids and our moms (and a few other special ladies!) have been throughout the years. I am having this luncheon at the Carolina Inn in Chapel Hill, NC, a place very near and dear to my heart. Not only do I plan weddings there regularly, but during college I lived in a cute house just across the street – and my sister got married at the Carolina Inn almost four years ago!

For many months now, I’ve been on the hunt for the perfect gifts for my bridesmaids, and I wanted to share some of my finds with you all, as you very well might be on the hunt, too! Most any bride-to-be has heard of the dreamy floral robes from Plum Pretty Sugar, and their robes (so many styles and patterns!) are the perfect accessory to get ready in the morning of your wedding.

Speaking of the morning of your wedding morning and getting ready with your best girls… you can’t forget the mimosas to properly toast to your wedding day! Champagne from Le Grand Courtage (I always love rosé!) or white wine from Speak Wines are two favorites: not only are their labels and packaging both beautiful and occasion-appropriate, but most any bridesmaid would love to be gifted a bottle or mini-bottle of champagne or wine. And with mimosas, you can’t forget the toasting flutes! Naturally Chic Gifts, based out of Raleigh, creates personalized champagne flutes (I’m a fan of the stemless ones!) and wine glasses in an array of metallic colors for your best girls.

I also have long loved the adorable Minimergency Bridesmaid Kits from Pinch Provisions, which hold everything you’d ever need for a wedding-day snafu. And, of course, one of the most popular bridesmaid gifts is jewelry for the wedding day, like matching earrings or a necklace that complements her bridesmaid dress perfectly. I love finding local stores to get jewelry from, and Moon & Lola is a Raleigh favorite! The best way to beautifully hold your bridesmaid gifts is in a pretty bag, like this Hello Lovely tote from PCB Home, all tied up with a pretty ribbon. And, above all else, a card with a written note expressing your thanks and love is the most important part. Taking the time to write a thoughtful note (to your soon-to-be spouse, your parents, your wedding party, and even vendors) is paramount!

We are hosting some fun wedding weekend events to love on our guests well and to welcome everyone to Raleigh, especially since most everyone will be traveling into town for the festivities. Welcome bags are always a marvelous way to show your guests some local flavor and your personalities, and they can also provide information on the wedding weekend timeline.

We are having an informal, everyone-is-invited welcome party on Friday night immediately following our rehearsal dinner, as it was important to us to spend as much time with our guests as possible! It’s a great way for everyone to get to know each other better, for us to meet those extended family members that we haven’t been able to meet yet, and to extend the celebrations even more. Most of all, we want to make sure our family and friends feel welcomed and celebrated when they arrive in Raleigh, especially since quality time are both mine and Rob’s love languages!

I’d love to hear how you celebrated your wedding weekend: did you have a bridesmaid luncheon or a welcome party? Are there any fun traditions or celebrations that you incorporated into your wedding weekend, or want to when you do get married?! And I’m cutting it close here with our rapidly approaching wedding date, but I have to ask: do you have a great idea for a meaningful, thoughtful gift for grooms? I have one gift for sure (so excited!), but I’m still searching for the perfect accompanying gift for Rob. I’m all ears if you have any suggestions!

All photos by Sarah Morrel Photography

P.S. In case you missed a post:
The proposal
Venue and photography
The dress
Bridesmaid style
Engagement photos
The details

emily Written with love by Emily
4 Comments
  1. avatar Christian reply

    Stephanie,
    Great ideas! Your bridesmaids are going to love everything! I had a hard time with a groom’s gift too. I spent so many hours searching, until I had a lightbulb moment. I have designed a valet box for him that my dad is building and staining out of wood that was harvested off of some family land I own. I ordered two engraved plaques for it – one for the top of the lid with his initials and one for the inside with a special message. Inside, I’m going to be putting a few trinkets including a book of notes I’m writing to him. Also, if you haven’t checked out UncommonGoods online, do so – they have some really awesome unique gifts. Good luck!!!

    • avatar Stephanie Scholl reply

      Christian, these are AMAZING ideas!! Thank you so very much for sharing! I love, love, love the sentiment + meaning behind your gifts for him, and goodness is he going to love it all!!!

  2. avatar Joy – Leicester Wedding Photographer reply

    I love these gift ideas!! Great touch :)

  3. avatar Amy reply

    Who wouldn’t want these gifts! So generous and loving! Looks like everything is coming together!

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Hi belles! Our friend Stephanie Scholl is the newest gal to take you through her wedding process here on the blog! Stephanie will be blogging for us every two weeks or so until her wedding in April. In case you missed her first post, be sure to check it out here! — Emily

Hi friends! We’re a mere six weeks (!!!) away from our wedding day, and I’m feeling both incredibly joyful at the thought of marrying my best friend so soon… and a little bit overwhelmed by all that’s left to do! Luckily, I’ve planned more than a few weddings, so I know we’re at a great place in the grand scheme of things and what’s left on our to-do list are the little details you’d expect as our wedding draws closer. RSVP cards are filling my mailbox every day (it’s a highlight of our day to open them together in the evening!), I have a final dress fitting tomorrow, travel plans have been booked for our guests, our wedding bands are picked out, and Rob and I are both excitedly counting down the days til we’re husband and wife!

Photo by Jenna Walker via Style Me Pretty

I’ve been keeping the design and details of our wedding day pretty private, as I really want to surprise our family and friends when they arrive to celebrate our marriage. I’m also known for my love of surprising people, so it’s only fitting that we keep many elements of our day under wraps! Today, however, I want to share with you some ways we are making our ceremony and reception personalized and meaningful, all while on a budget.

I’ve learned more and more throughout planning our wedding how important it is to us to stick to our budget, which also helps us (me, especially) prioritize what’s most important to us and what novelties we are able to do without. It’s been both demanding and liberating to stick to our set budget, knowing that we could easily spend much more money… but also knowing that we do not want to do so. We’re sticking to our biggest priorities: loving our family and friends well, showing them genuine Southern hospitality, celebrating our marriage alongside our loved ones, and glorifying God through it all!

Bouquet by Philosophy Flowers and photo by Landon Jacob from this editorial

We chose to work with Alana from Serendipity Designs as our wedding florist, and I couldn’t be happier with our choice! Flowers are one my favorite wedding details, and they’re also something I notice right away as a guest. I love (love!!) flowers, and I have no doubt Serendipity Designs will make all of my floral dreams come true on our wedding day.

Many of my very favorite Southern blooms (most of them with great meaning to me) will be present in my bouquet and throughout our wedding design. We’ll be using O’Hara garden roses as a nod to my paternal grandma, as she and I share a deep love of the book Gone With the Wind and all things Scarlett O’Hara. And to pay tribute to my maternal grandma, who passed away a few months ago, we’ll be using Queen Anne’s lace, a beautiful flower that reminds me of her. My sweet mama is also letting me use a ribbon of lace from her wedding dress to tie around my bridal bouquet, as my sister did a couple years ago. I love knowing that I’ll be carrying such significant, sentimental nods to the most important ladies in my life as I marry Rob!

Photo by Amy Arrington from Lauren and Kristian’s wedding

For our ceremony, we hoping to portray our faith and God’s love for us in all aspects. One of the very first things I did after getting engaged was to rent a wooden cross for our ceremony (local Triangle brides, check out Homemade Bride!), as we want Christ to be the center of our wedding and our marriage. Even though we’re getting married outside under the trees, as I’ve envisioned my entire life, we know that we can still have a church-like ceremony, especially with a cross at the center of it all. And, as a nod to our engagement session under the Spanish moss and my love of Spanish moss, our florist will be adorning the cross with Spanish moss, a little detail I’m incredibly excited about it.

Photo by Nancy Ray Photography from Callie and Jamie’s wedding

During our ceremony, as one of our first acts together as husband and wife, we will be serving communion to all of our guests. This is something I’ve wanted to do for a very long time, and I tear up when I stop and think about the ceremony: walking down the aisle with my daddy, having our best friends stand by our side, saying our vows to one another and marrying Rob, praying with our pastor and our wedding party during the ceremony, singing our favorite hymns, and serving our family and friends communion. I can only imagine how many times I’ll cry happy tears on our wedding day!

Photo by Davy Whitener from this editorial

One of our biggest hopes for our details is that they showcase our love of our family. Rob and I both are blessed to have marvelous families, and we are grateful for the legacy of lifelong, abundantly loving marriages for all of our grandparents and parents. All of our grandparents and parents (and their marriages) have made a profound impact on us, and paying homage to those marriages at our wedding is something we’re very excited to do. Our beautiful venue, The Merrimon-Wynne House, has gorgeous white mantles in almost every room, which are the perfect spaces to display wedding photos of our grandparents and parents. I am also working on compiling marriage advice from our families, and we will be displaying their wisdom in a beautiful way, too.

Photo by Haley Sheffield from Emily and Joe’s wedding

Goodness, designing all of these details is something that makes my wedding-loving heart so happy, and knowing they are for OUR wedding is icing on the cake! I am truly giddy about the thought of it all and seeing these meaningful details come to life on our wedding day.

Tell me: if you already got married, what were the most personalized details you chose to incorporate that are a nod to your love story? And if you haven’t planned your wedding yet, are there any details you are absolutely set on having? (I used to want a black and white checked dance floor (and I still do!), but it simply isn’t in our budget and wasn’t an absolute priority for me!)

P.S. In case you missed a post:
The proposal
Venue and photography
The dress
Bridesmaid style
Engagement photos

Landon Jacob, Amy Arrington, Nancy Ray, and Davy Whitener are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

emily Written with love by Emily
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