Something we hear frequently from brides is how overwhelming the many sources of wedding inspiration can be. As wonderful as wedding blogs (yes, even this one) and Pinterest are, it can be far too easy to lose sight of what’s important after you’ve been scrolling through ideas for what seems like hours. That’s one of the many reasons we created the Sweet Tea Society: to remind us–and you!–what really matters when planning your big day. One of my favorite lines is “We believe in history and heritage, and honoring both to create a deeply meaningful beginning to married life.” Farris and Taylor did this in spades. From the big things like the chapel where they were married (Farris was the third generation in her family to say “I do” there!) to the little details, like the s’mores bar lovingly crafted by Taylor’s mama, everything about their Nashville wedding was personal and sentimental.
Hugs to Kristyn Hogan for sharing Farris and Taylor’s wedding with us!
We met through mutual friends during our sophomore year at the University of Tennessee. The attraction was definitely always there and it was obvious to the many friends that kept encouraging us to date. One night, we were watching a movie with a bunch of friends, and before we knew it, all of them had left and lit a ton of candles on their way out. We looked at each other and just laughed because I don’t think either one of us was ready for a relationship at that point. Fast forward a couple years, there was a girl who liked Taylor and would not leave him alone. She decided to come to town to visit him and he did what any man would do–asked me to be his fake girlfriend. Of course, I agreed, and our friends decided we should hold hands to “make it look official.” Believe it or not, that was one powerful hand hold…the rest was history. Funny fact: the girl did not even show up. ;)
Tell us all about the proposal! My family has a cottage in Monteagle that is very special to our family. Taylor and I were spending Thanksgiving apart, but we decided that he would meet me the day after Thanksgiving in Monteagle. When he arrived, he asked to take a walk to “The Point” (our favorite cliff top view). He laid out a blanket on the cliff and we were enjoying the views when he pulled out a book. He had written an entire book on our story! He read the entire story to me, and at the end, he read, “On November 23rd, Taylor proposed to Farris.” I remember thinking, “When is November 23rd??” but before I could finish my thought, he pulled me on my feet, got on one knee, and asked me to be his wife! Of course, I said yes, and after much rejoicing, he pointed out his brother hiding in the woods with a camera. We walked down the path to an opening where both of our families were there to congratulate us. It was absolutely perfect.
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Yes, we did! I get nervous easily and Taylor can always calm my nerves, so we decided to see each other and pray together alone before the ceremony. Best decision I’ve ever made.
My great grandmother and my grandmother were both married in the same chapel as I was. There is something magical about memories that happen in the same place over a period of time.
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We started writing our vows when we happened to come across my parents’ vows and realized that they promised everything we wanted to promise to each other. We changed some wording in their vows and made it our own. My two favorite lines were “By God’s grace, I will affirm and challenge you in becoming all that God has purposed you to be to the church and the world, and will serve Him together with you as one, giving Him the glory and honor” and “I will support you in the pursuit of your dreams and cherish you above all the possessions and honors of this life.”
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? 1 Corinthians 13: 1-8. The typical wedding scripture is usually verses 4-8 but I actually love verses 1-3 the most: “If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing. 3 If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.”
I knew I wanted Kristyn Hogan as our photographer and wouldn’t budge on that and I am SO happy I didn’t…I mean, just look at these pictures! The pictures are the one thing you will keep from your wedding for the rest of your lives to help you remember what a blessed day it was!
Describe your wedding flowers. Amazing. My mom works at Village of Flowers and they are loads of fun! Everyone at Village of Flowers chipped in and made it all possible. I could not have been more happy with how beautiful the flowers made both venues look!
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The s’mores bar and fire pit at our reception. My mother-in-law worked on every little detail from the s’mores bar inspiration I had collected on Pinterest and my dreams came true when I saw the final product! My parents brought in the fire pit to roast the marshmallows. It was a hit at the reception!
When did y’all get married? October 12, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 250
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Walking down the aisle, we had Matt Wertz singing “I Will Not Take My Love Away.” It is such a beautiful song about unconditional love, and it reminds me of the love of Christ that made our relationship possible. Walking back up the aisle, Sam Levine played “Viva La Vida” by Coldplay, just because we love it and it sounds awesome with a band.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our venue was also quite Southern, as it was a gorgeous barn on a local Nashville farm.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Learning that nothing will be perfect. God had to teach me that the wedding was not the part we needed to be most prepared for…it was the marriage. I was so caught up in every little detail that I sometimes forgot that the whole reason for the celebration was my marriage to Taylor. I am a perfectionist, so it was hard to let go of the small stuff and begin spending time on the relationship stuff–the stuff that really matters AFTER the wedding!
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? It was very special to have one of our favorite artists, Matt Wertz, and my cousin, Joelle May, sing at our ceremony. It was breathtaking, I don’t think there was a dry eye in the chapel.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? I knew there was something special about our first kiss after we became husband and wife, but later, we heard why from our parents. They told us that as soon as we kissed, the sun shown so brightly through the windows, straight on the two of us like a spotlight. I also loved walking down the aisle and seeing all the amazing people who have supported and loved us, and then looking up to see my amazing husband crying. I don’t think I have ever felt so much love!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? During the planning process, keep your sole focus on your relationship with your fiancé. We both got so much out of pre-marital counseling. Marriage brings about a lot of changes that you never had to deal with as a dating couple. No one can ever be fully prepared for marriage, but preparing yourself enough to get through it together is worth it.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We bought a sweet little house and have been decorating it together and making it our own. We love to travel and hope to travel around the world within the next couple of years. We looked forward to living together and boy, is it fun! It’s just like living with your best friend who you also happen to be in love with. It is amazing how much you learn about a person just by living with them. We have been surprised by how much we work as a team when cooking and doing dishes together. I love that no one has to hold the weight of any one thing–we have an equal-responsibility household. We love to go on walks together and have recently got into “juicing.” Our honeymoon in St. Lucia was absolutely amazing, and my favorite part about getting back to real life was returning to our new home together and being able to make dinner, eat by candlelight, and talk about all the amazing memories we had made over the past week.
Photographer: Kristyn Hogan / Videographer: Kip Kubin / Planner: Danielle Loeffler from Catalyst Weddings and Events / Ceremony Venue: Scarritt Bennett / Reception Venue: The Grange at Green Door Gourmet / Florist: A Village of Flowers / Cake Baker: B. Jacksons Bakery / Caterer: Sargents Catering / Rentals: Music City Tents and Events / Lighting: Bright Event Productions / Ceremony Musician: Sam Levine / Reception Band: AVENUE 615, David Deloach / Bride’s Gown: “Ebie” by Olia Zavozina / Programs: Darby Cards / Invitations: Emily O. Holmes / Calligraphy: Calligraphy by Barbara / Bride’s Accessories: Olia Zavozina / Hair Stylist: Leslie at Katie Russo Beauty / Makeup Artist: Katie Russo at Katie Russo Beauty / Bride’s Shoes: Gianni Bini from Dillards / Bridesmaid Dresses: Coren Moore in Blush and Joanna August in “All Tomorrows Parties” / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Bella Bridesmaid / Men’s Attire: “Egara” suit from Men’s Wearhouse / Ties: Otis James / Rolls Royce Rental: Grand Avenue Worldwide / Trolly: FADDS Party Bus / Photo Booth: Shutterbooth