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We often joke around in the office about how often Lisa and I cry reading the sweet interviews from our bride and grooms. However, sometimes, with the gravity of the stories shared with us, it’s almost impossible not to. After her father’s sudden passing just two months before their wedding, Maggie shared with us how Travis tenderly cared for not only her, but for her family. Carrying that servant’s heart into their marriage, Maggie and Travis started their wedding day by washing each other’s feet and the feet of their immediate family members and wedding party, together. But, that’s not the only way these two honored their family– they also carried on the tradition of getting married in Cape Charles, the town where Maggie’s grandmother grew up in. With so many sweet memories from the past, and even more from their wedding day, Maggie remembers that returning for Thanksgiving after the wedding was magical!

We’re delighted that Gracie Blue shared this special day with us!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? Yes! Cape Charles is the town my grandmother grew up in. I always admired and respected my grandmother for her gumption, resilience, and poise. She was married in Cape Charles, my aunt was married in Cape Charles, and my cousin/best bud was married in Cape Charles. We still have the house she grew up in, and have spent summers, Easters. and Thanksgivings there. It means so much to me and to Travis, who fell in love with it the first time he visited. Getting married in this place was a way to honor our heritage and our family history, and to carry on the tradition. Returning there for Thanksgiving after our wedding was MAGICAL! I kept thinking about how all of “our people” had been in this town, in this house even. I walked down these steps in my wedding dress. We said “I do” right on this dock. It is so sweet that the place we got married is a place we will return to time and time again. It made Cape Charles more special than it already was!

I went dress shopping with just my mom because I didn’t want to be overwhelmed by opinions (plus, my mom has EXCELLENT taste). We went to a total of three places, and I knew I did not want anything strapless or lace. The dress I ended up with was the second dress I tried on at the first place we went, Anna Be in Denver. I wasn’t sure at first, but as I looked at myself in the dress, I started to cry, which is SO unlike me. Sure enough, that dress was both strapless and lace. After that, I compared every dress to the second one I tried on and nothing had the same WOW effect. Mom and I both knew it was “the one” and went back to Anna Be to seal the deal. When they put the veil on me, I was blubbering. I still adore my dress and wish I could wear it every day!

Music is really important to both of us. I love piano so we HAD to have a piano, which was perfect for “Interlude” by Shane and Shane for my walk down the aisle. It’s a really lovely song. Trav loves “Come Thou Fount” as a proclamation and “Divine Romance” is what my relationship with Jesus has been marked by. One night, Trav and I were driving late and he played the Glee version of “Teenage Dream” by Katy Perry. We started laughing about the idea of playing it for a few seconds at the wedding. Then we both said, WAIT, why not?! Our friends were able to play it on the piano and we had a short, surprise dance party. We take marriage seriously and we honor and love the Lord and those around us, but we are also lighthearted and fun.

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? For us, the loss of my dad two months before the wedding was a sucker punch. It made everything so hard. We had to keep planning, but desperately wanted to grieve and curl up in a ball and hide. In hindsight (I was too shocked to realize this at first), Travis stepped up in a way no other man could. He was so present and supportive. He helped my mom navigate planning the service and finances, he reached out to my friends to let them know how I was doing, he helped around the house, he comforted my brothers and supported them like a brother and father would. He was phenomenal. He was so supportive and gentle with me, seeking to love me and care for me and understand. Meanwhile, he learned how to honor and navigate his own grief. I was just blown away by him and how he stepped up. During that time, preparing for our marriage, which was the MOST important thing, seemed so overwhelming. We just had to pray that the Lord would be present on that day and that he would be working in the crevices of our heart to bring healing and redemption. And He showed up, big time. :)

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? The location, the food, the traditions, the music/band…so many things! Not to mention the fried chicken, oysters, mac and cheese, sweet potato biscuits, country ham, shrimp and grits, watermelon salad…

I wanted traditional, Southern flowers that were full of color. I wanted stargazer lilies and peonies because they are my mom’s favorite flowers. Hydrangeas, magnolias, and gardenias were incorporated because both my grandmothers and my mom carried them in their bouquets. My mom and I have expensive flower taste, but we both really cared about the flowers and my bouquet (which was absolutely fabulous–they nailed it!).

How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? We went to counseling regularly and took time to pray together often. We went on dates and tried to NOT talk about the wedding. Something that was important to us BEFORE engagement was to feel like we were really on the same team, a united front. We started counseling before engagement (but only went once, actually, before he popped the question!). It kept us grounded and focused, and reminded us of the purpose of our wedding. Though we put in a LOT of effort to make it an amazing weekend, we really were over wedding planning because we just wanted to be married!

Don’t miss Maggie and Travis’ wedding film by Light Cannon Films below!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Travis and I met in the summer of 2008 at Camp Timberline in Estes Park, Colorado. He was the photographer; I was a counselor. Our friendship began over a love for our other home, North Carolina. At the end of the summer, Travis asked for my number–I thought he just wanted to be friends. The following fall, I was cruising through my sophomore year at the University of North Carolina and, lo and behold, Mr. Travis Bartlett continued to show up in Chapel Hill to “take me out.” He continued to check in and say hello, but I was not really having it. Travis was present throughout my final years at Chapel Hill and many of my college friends recall his visits, but we never became anything more than friends, though he certainly tried. Moving along, I spent summer 2012 in Kenya for work. At that time, I raised my salary, and one night, I was in the lodge working on a donor update email. On a whim, I decided to include Travis on my update, though we hadn’t spoken in awhile. To this day, I have no idea why I added him, but we are both glad I did. He emailed me back and offered to support me monthly ($100/month!). He became the biggest personal donor I had and, immediately, I wondered aloud if I would have to marry him based on his support! I moved back to Denver in August of 2012. Once we we back on the same coast, we began talking again, and, of course, I now had to stay in touch with him because he was supporting my salary. Then, a Tuesday night phone call in November tugged at my heartstrings. After that three-hour conversation, I hung up and could not stop smiling. Travis was finally about to win his girl. We began dating long distance and he moved to Denver in June 2014. We got engaged in November after dating for two years.
Tell us all about the proposal! From Travis: I had this amazingly elaborate scheme of proposing to Maggie in a park close to where she grew up in Denver. We would always go on walks to the park and along the Highline Canal (something that Maggie did a lot of growing up). I wanted to set up Christmas lights in the trees, so I showed up early Friday morning (the day of the planned proposal) and did so, equipped with tons of layers, lights, and equipment. After work, I showed up at Maggie’s house to find her sick and feeling terrible. To make matters worse, one of her best friends got engaged the same night, and there were dolphins and sunsets and all kinds of epicness. I was like, DANG! We got in the car to drive to her parents’ house because she didn’t want to stay at her place that night, as her roommate was throwing a dinner party. On the way over, she was still sick, but her mom told me, “Travis, just do it. This is how life goes.” However, I realized I just couldn’t do it that night because she was so sick. Saturday came and I was up early along with the snow…tons of snow. Mags was still not feeling well, but I was doing my best to get her to go on a walk. We were all scheming to get her out of the house, but the last thing she wanted to do was get out of bed and walk in the cold. Finally, I convinced her to go on a six-block walk to the park where I was going to propose. When we saw the park, Mags said, “I am ready to go back.” But I stood behind her as the lights turned on, and handed her a letter and journal. She started freaking out, trying to understand what was going on. When she turned around, I was down on one knee. She jumped up and down, ran AWAY from me in excitement, then ran back and slid to me in the snow. I gave her the ring and she said YES! We sat in the snow under the trees for 30 minutes, crying and laughing, as we read through my letter and journal that I kept throughout the ring-buying and engagement process (because I knew she would want to know all of the details). After we got too cold, we walked back to her parents’ house to find her family waiting for us in excitement.
When did y’all get married? June 20, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 250
Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? No, I wanted the first time Travis saw me that afternoon to be down the aisle, surrounded by friends and family. That was also such a fragile moment because my dad passed away suddenly just two months before the wedding…it was really tender and sacred. We also didn’t do a first look that day because we knew we would see each other that morning. We planned to wash each other’s feet and then wash the feet of our immediate family members and wedding party, together. That was absolutely one of my favorite memories. It was a powerful way to share Jesus with others and to proclaim that the banner over our marriage was selflessness and sacrifice for others. It was very emotional for so many reasons–for the loss we had faced, for the loss others had faced, for my cousin/best friend who was diagnosed with cancer when my dad passed, for those who humbled themselves to receive it, to hear Travis pray over our marriage and relationships and friendship. It was incredible. Hands down, the best way to start a day and our marriage.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Remember that your marriage is far more important than the details of your wedding day. Make decisions quickly, don’t drag them out. Hold your wedding loosely–so many things can change that you CAN’T control. Don’t stress so much about how you look–be healthy and you will GLOW on your wedding day!
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? For now, resting and nesting. Spending time together, still loving NOT planning a wedding, grieving the loss of my dad and cousin, and enjoying time with family and friends. We want to travel and live abroad in the next year, but also want to get back to Sun Valley, Idaho (where Travis used to live) to explore the mountains (we’re mountain people!).

Photographer: Gracie Blue | Videographer: Light Cannon Films | Planner and Special Details: Alex Meyer Events | Venue: Private residence | Florist: Palette of Petals | Cake Baker: Cape Charles Coffee Shop | Caterer: Sweetwater Cuisine | Rentals and Lighting: Big Top Entertainment | Band: Risse Band | Paper Products: Travis Bartlett and The Paper Lady | Bride’s Gown: “Abelle” by Anna Maier | Bridal Salon: Anna Be | Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist: Behind the Veil | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “JH5412” in Blush by JLM Couture | Menswear: Men’s Wearhouse

marissa Written with love by Marissa
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Libby and Matt’s interview is so full of insight into how they planned for not only their wedding day, but also for their marriage, with intentionality and joy. There is no better a place to show this than during the ceremony! Knowing what a big deal it is to promise your life to someone, Libby and Matt chose to say traditional vows in front of their friends and family, and then personal vows privately during communion. From Matt protecting Libby from spiders, to Libby promising to dance with Matt “anytime, anywhere,” I love that these two wrote vows that reflected their commitment to each other and their relationship, as well as a peek into the fun that they want to carry into married life.

Thank you to Lynnsey Catron for sharing this sweet Kentucky day with us!

I thought I would try on a billion dresses and have a hard time finding “the one.” I ended up only trying on about ten! I was trying to decide between two lace gowns when my soon-to-be mother-in-law pointed to another dress and remarked about how different it was. I tried it on for fun and ended up loving it! It was so different than what I had imagined, but it far exceeded what I could have ever dreamed up!

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We decided not to see each other before the ceremony. Matt in particular felt strongly about not seeing each other until I walked down the aisle. We are so happy that we went with tradition! We did exchange gifts without seeing each other earlier in the day. We got to hold hands and I’ll never forget the feeling. As hard as it was not being able to see each other until later in the day, the anticipation made the walk down the aisle so surreal! There was so much weight and meaning behind that first time seeing each other–it was the culmination of everything we had been through and hoped for!

What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? My grandma read Ephesians 4:32: “Be kind to each other, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, just as God through Christ has forgiven you,” and Ephesians 5:1: “Imitate God, therefore, in everything you do because you are his dear children. Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.” This was so special because these verses are also my grandparents’ marriage verses. They have been married for over 50 years!

We recited traditional vows in front of our guests during the ceremony. Later, after a time of worship and communion, we read our personal vows to each other privately. This was our favorite and definitely the most emotional time of the ceremony! Promising your life to someone is BIG, but we both had such certainty and peace. My favorite part of Matt’s vows was when he promised to always protect me, especially from spiders. Matt’s favorite part of my vows was when I promised to scratch his neck in the car and to always dance with him, anytime, anywhere.

Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Two of our friends sang “In Christ Alone,” accompanied by a three-piece string section, while our wedding party processed. My dad walked me down the aisle to “The Butterfly Waltz” by Brian Crain. It sounds like the perfect garden party music–so pretty! One of my bridesmaids sang “Ever Be” by Bethel during our time of communion and personal vows. We love that song and it perfectly explains the relationship we get to have with our Heavenly Father! And finally, we celebrated to Beyonce’s “Love on Top” for the recessional because nothing says “WE’RE MARRIED!!” like Beyonce.

We included lots of Southern traditions in our wedding! We got ready in a beautiful Antebellum-style house with the original furnishings. Our wedding party was huge–the more friends and family included, the better! Our programs doubled as fans for the warm weather that accompanies a summer garden wedding in Kentucky. And most Southern of all: we had a HUGE BBQ dinner! We served brisket, barbecue chicken, mac and cheese, green beans, and sweet tea. Theres nothing more Southern than that!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? Matt and I took a walk around the Whitehall gardens one evening after hearing how beautiful the venue is. I didn’t expect to get emotional over a garden, but we could both see our wedding day taking place there and it was so dreamy! There was such peace and joy in that decision; we didn’t even really look at other venues!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The biggest challenge was definitely the last minute details. We (cough cough Libby) found ourselves trying to add “just one more” detail on top of one more detail. With the stress of wanting everything to be just right, it was a challenge not to get caught up in the tiniest decisions. The only way to overcome this challenge was to gain some perspective. In 50 years, Matt and I won’t remember if each table had the same excessive number of votive candles. Instead, we will remember what it felt like to spend an entire day celebrating our commitment to each other and making our guests feel welcomed and loved.

Don’t miss Libby and Matt’s highlights film by Bryan Starr Cinematography below!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Matt and I met in 2008 when he became friends with my brother through school and baseball. We met again in the summer of 2013 when we were both asked to lead a Bible study for high school students. We got together one day to discuss what the year of Bible study might look like, and ended up talking for four hours. From that point on, we were inseparable and became best friends. I was apprehensive to date due to past experiences, but Matt continued to pursue me with consistency, gentleness, and patience. We began dating months later and the Lord used Matt to re-align my misconstrued idea of love with Godly love and pursuit. Somewhere along the way, I became certain that he was the one I would spend my life with–the best feeling in the world!
Tell us all about the proposal! Matt and I got engaged on November 1, 2014. Matt picked me up for dinner, which he had made himself, complete with roses, candles, and appetizers. After dinner, Matt suggested we go to our favorite spot, a gazebo in historic Middletown Park. We had spent time there dreaming about a future together at the beginning of our relationship and had re-visited the gazebo on special occasions. These visits usually involved slow dancing and being silly together. The night of the engagement, I almost didn’t get out of the car (It was FREEZING outside and I had a dress on!) but Matt wanted to dance (and propose, unbeknownst to me), so I agreed. We danced and Matt told me how much he loved me and that he wanted to spend our lives together. He got on one knee and asked me to marry him! I said YES and cried like a baby. Afterwards, Matt took me to my parents’ house to tell them the news, where I was surprised by a full house of family and friends! He had even gotten my sister from Florida and one of my best friends from Alabama there to celebrate. Cue even more crying like a baby. It was the best night!
When did y’all get married? August 2, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 250
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Matt and I did premarital counseling through our church and met with mentors as our wedding day approached. We also did some at-home counseling through a study called “Saving Your Marriage Before It Starts” by Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott. It helped us keep our focus on the importance of the marriage that follows the excitement of the wedding day. We found that we learned a lot about each other and really enjoyed the time we put in to paving the way for a healthy and God-honoring marriage!
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? My bridesmaids were amazing. They would come over for movie nights and sit on the floor putting programs together or helping to assemble table numbers. I would have been far more stressed and spent far more money without them! The same goes for my mom! She is an expert planner and is so good at organizing the tiniest details, which helped save so much money. I would have been lost without her! I made our “Husband” and “Wife” chair signs and our “Just Married” sign for the getaway car. We were blessed with lots of family friends who volunteered to set our reception tables and they did an amazing job. Serving dinner buffet-style instead of plate service helped save money too.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Just relax and have fun! Remember that what happens after the wedding in your marriage is the most important thing. Marriage is a gift and the time spent planning for it is special and unique! Also, definitely spend time finding a photographer/videographer that will capture the day perfectly for you. Looking back is so fun! And just remind yourself that you get to take a vacation with your best friend when it’s all over :)
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We would love to spend some time traveling in the next few years! Europe is on the top of our list but we would also love to take a trip down the coast of California on Highway 1. We dream about having a big family with lots of babies! And no matter where we are, we want to do ministry and love on people the way we have been loved!

Photographer: Lynnesy Catron | Videographer: Bryan Starr Cinematography | Planner: Aletia Thompson, Debbie Weiss, and Sally Parks | Venue: Whitehall Mansion and Gardens | Florist: Country Squire Florist | Cake Baker: Lady A Cakes | Caterer: Bootleg BBQ | Rentals and Lighting: Reliable Rental | DJ: HAY DJ | Calligraphy: Anna K. Ashley | Invitations: Wedding Paper Divas | Bride’s Gown: “River” by Blush by Hayley Paige | Bride’s Veil: “Stella” by Sara Gabriel | Hair Stylist: Hali Breitenstein of Hali B & Co. Salon | Makeup Artist: Bethany Tiesman of BEAUTY by Bethany | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Style B2078 in New Shell Pink by B2 by Jasmine | String Musicians: Highland Chamber Players

marissa Written with love by Marissa
2 Comments
  1. avatar Wedding: Libby & Matt » Lynnesy Catron Photography reply

    […] seen on Southern Weddings, Libby and Matt’s day was breathtaking.  I could go on and on about how beautiful the […]

  2. avatar Kristin reply

    Would you be able to please tell me where Libby and Matt got their framed seating chart? Thank you!

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