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Southern Weddings

Monthly Archives: August 2014

This post is brought to you by RSVP Wedding Manager–thanks for your support of the brands that make Southern Weddings possible!

I was quickly reminded as Dave and I compiled addresses for our save the dates (I’ll be sharing them with y’all soon!) that planning a wedding means a lot to keep track of. After gathering addresses via text, email, over the phone, and more (my sweet Grandma mailed my mom a list!), we still had to organize them and format them for our envelopes before finally popping our finished save the dates into the mailbox. I know that as the wedding gets closer, there will be even more to track (gifts, thank you notes, and actual wedding invitations, to name a few!), and if you’re planning a wedding and struggling to stay on top of all of those lists, I’m happy to introduce RSVP Wedding Manager.

RSVP Wedding Manager has thought of every possible wedding guest organization need, from importing and organizing contacts from your email account, iCloud and more, to keeping track of who is coming to which event, to whether or not you’ve sent a handwritten thank you note for gifts received. Each guest is assigned an ID number for easy tracking, and you can organize guests into helpful groups (like “Bride’s Family”). If you’re having your envelopes addressed in calligraphy, RSVP Wedding Manager makes it easy for you to organize your information in the format that your calligrapher needs. So helpful to you both!

Beyond your guest list, RSVP Wedding Manager also offers tools for organizing other important parts of your wedding. You can create to-do lists and assign tasks and deadlines to different people (like your mama or your maid of honor–super helpful if y’all are spread out across the country!), monitor your budget and print reports of it, and keep track of your vendors and inspiration. You can even scan in vendor contracts to keep everything in one handy, organized place.

Of course, the need for an organized mailing address system doesn’t end after your last wedding gift thank you note is sent. RSVP Wedding Manager can also be used to organize parties and events, keep track of addresses for Christmas cards, moving announcements, and baby announcements, and more. Anything that makes sending good old-fashioned snail mail easier is good by us!

We’d love to know, how are you keeping your wedding organized?

lisa Written with love by Lisa

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We all know that the weather here in the South is unpredictable, to say the least–especially in Florida! After it rained for two days straight, Victoria and Marcus’ outdoor ceremony and reception at the Pebble Hill Plantation had to be moved indoors. With Mother Nature throwing a wrench in your wedding plans like that, it can be easy to get bogged down and frustrated. But, what could have dampened (pun intended!) these lovebirds’ plans instead helped craft one of Victoria’s favorite wedding day memories! She said marrying the man of her dreams in the unpretentious and charming chapel, jam-packed with their family and friends, was both genuine and incredibly beautiful. I must say, their rain plan ended up mighty lovely!

Big thanks to Chelsey Boatwright for sharing such a sweet day with us!

Four generations of women in my family came with me to look for the dress–from my grandmother to my four-year-old niece, Cassidy. While we didn’t have any luck that day, I got a feel for what I was looking for. I began searching online and found a dress that was perfect! The only shop that carried it was in Jacksonville, a four-hour drive from my home in Tampa. I convinced my fiancé to make a pit stop on our trip to Savannah and sit in the car while I tried it on one Friday afternoon. I loved it so much that I had my mom drive from Tallahassee just to see it. The staff at the White Magnolia were absolutely wonderful to work with. Luckily for me, they decided to open a shop in Tampa soon after I ordered the dress, so all of my fittings were very close by!

Marcus and I decided not to do a first look. Our families are very traditional, and we didn’t want to take that moment away from those we love, who really wanted to see it. It was one of the best decisions we made for the big day. Everyone was on pins and needles when the church doors opened and I walked in. I looked at Marcus and he was in tears…along with the entire room, who was watching our moment together. It was priceless.

Describe your wedding flowers. We wanted something that looked romantic and timeless. My colors were white and gray, but our florist convinced us to use a bit more color. He came up with some beautiful, natural arrangements, and was an absolute pleasure to work with. He was very creative and took charge of decorating an entirely new venue, just two days before the wedding.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? The decision was pretty difficult, and ultimately, we chose Pebble Hill Plantation for its simple beauty. We planned to have the ceremony and reception outside by the stables, but God had other plans for us. It rained for two days straight before the wedding, so we moved the ceremony to a local chapel down the street, and the reception to Uno Barn on the Pebble Hill property. It turned out better than we could have ever expected.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Saying my vows to the man of my dreams. The chapel was very unpretentious and charming, and we had tons of friends and family crammed into it. It just felt so genuine and unassuming, while also being incredibly beautiful. It felt like we had stepped back in time.

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t be crazy! Stay flexible, remember what is most important, and give people the space to do their jobs. I think that our wedding was so successful because we gave our vendors a vision without micromanaging them. We allowed them to use their creativity to do what they do best! With the rain situation, all of our original plans went out the window. I was so happy that we all kept our heads on straight and figured out how to make it work, without over-stressing about something we couldn’t help.

After choosing to get married at a plantation, we took its Southern charm and ran with it! The most Southern aspect of our wedding was probably the menu, which started with a fried green tomato appetizer. Then we moved to the main course, which was fried chicken, macaroni and cheese, grilled pork tenderloin, roasted seasonal vegetables, and homemade biscuits with fig preserves and mayhaw jelly. Then, there were pecan bars for dessert!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met as freshmen at the University of Florida in 2007. Marcus, a new member of Sigma Alpha Epsilon fraternity, volunteered to pick up a group of girls from the dorms one night for a party, and I was one of those girls. We quickly became friends, but it wasn’t until a few years later (and a great deal of persistence on Marcus’ part) that we began dating. We became inseparable and enjoyed everything from Gator game days and Greek social events to weekend beach trips and travel adventures.
Tell us all about the proposal! It was our three-year anniversary, and all I wanted was a romantic surprise date. Honestly, I wasn’t sure he was going to pull it off; little did I know just how surprised I would be! We started driving to the middle of nowhere, and when we pulled up, Marcus explained that we were at Swallowtail Farm, a farm-to-table restaurant in High Springs, Florida. We walked around the property, and I noticed a table for two in the middle of a gorgeous garden. I was shocked…and a little embarrassed that Marcus went through all of the trouble, just to fulfill my silly request for an over-the-top date night! It was absolutely beautiful. I didn’t realize what he had planned until he started pouring the champagne and I noticed his hands were shaking. Just as I was about to ask him what was wrong, he dropped to his knee and asked me to marry him. It was the most special moment of my life and I, of course, said yes! We laughed and hugged, and then I saw Lanier, Marcus’ sister, and a family friend, Brittany, waving from a barn. They had taken pictures of the whole thing! Then, Marcus told me he had another surprise. We walked along the trails of the farm and meandered over to the farmhouse. I assumed we were going to eat dinner, but then I realized that he had invited our family and close friends to celebrate with us!
When did y’all get married? March 29, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 220
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We had a small wedding cake (pound cake) as well as mini red velvet and chocolate peanut butter cupcakes and pecan bars. The groom’s cake was a giant alligator wearing a construction hat (we are Gator fans, and Marcus works in construction management).
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We chose not to give out favors. We wanted folks to enjoy the open bar, live music, great food, and safe transportation, and felt a parting gift was an unnecessary expense. $2 koozies for 220 people adds up fast!
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? The dynamic Thomasville Trio: our florist, Ram Singletary, our caterer, Jeanie Bracey, and our day-of coordinator, Emily Beeson. They work with each other on a regular basis, and they made planning our big day so fun and easy. Ram’s passion for all things beautiful coupled with Jeanie’s energetic attitude and Emily’s attention to detail made our day stress-free and even better than expected. We also really enjoyed working with our photographer, Chelsey Boatwright. She was my childhood babysitter who was gracious enough to drive up from South Florida to be a part of our big day!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We have settled in together in Tampa, Florida and are looking forward to celebrating many of our friends who plan to get married soon. We are most looking forward to spending more time together and creating new memories with each other as a couple. I am also still excited about getting used to a new last name!

Photographer: Chelsey Boatwright / Videographer: Southern Blue / Planner: Emily Beeson / Venue: Pebble Hill Plantation / Florist and Lighting: Singletary’s Flowers / Wedding Cake: Sharyn Brown / Caterer: Janie Bracey / Rentals: Andrew Tent Co Inc. / Band: The Blues Factor Band / Paper Products: Sarah Anne Watson Design / Bride’s Gown: “Leah” by Modern Trousseau / Hair Stylist: Debbie Beers / Bride’s Shoes: Antonio Melani / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Watters / Men’s Attire: Men’s Wearhouse

marissa Written with love by Marissa
  1. avatar chelsey reply

    So excited to see this amazing wedding featured today!

  2. avatar Friday Fresh Squeeze #154 – Floridian Weddings reply

    […] a little in love with every bit of this Georgia plantation wedding from our Fave Chelsey Boatwright. Their story is a sweet reminder that you always need to have a […]

  3. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    Love the bridesmaid dresses and the huge bouquets of baby’s breath!

  4. avatar Moodboard: mariage ardoise & Slate and chalkboard wedding | Happy Chantilly reply

    […] Olives – 2: Kate Osborne via Oncewed – 3: SNC – 4:  Chelsey Boatwright via Southern weddings – 5:  Tonie Christine via Bridal Musings – 6: Faire-part mariage ardoise / […]

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!

Reply to:

Emily and I just got back from a road trip to a V7 shoot, and there’s nothing quite like driving across a little stretch of the South to remind me how truly special, unique, and beautiful this place we call home is! I was further reminded of that fact by the beauty of Palmetto Landing, where Caitlin and Sam said their vows and then celebrated their marriage under the stars. From the palms and oak trees that are so signature to South Carolina, to the views of the river in the background, it was a breathtaking place for this outdoors-loving couple to start their new life together!

Thank you so much to Aaron and Jillian for sharing Caitlin and Sam’s special day with us!

Tell us all about the proposal! It was November 2013, and Sam and I were living in Greenville, South Carolina. We missed our friends in Colorado, so we planned a trip to go visit them. He took me to go see our former coworkers at the Trail West lodge, while unbeknownst to me, our friends were down at the barn hiding and waiting for us. After we left the lodge, Sam and I headed out for a horseback ride. Just as I was about to go get the saddle, Sam stopped me and said he had something to show me. I looked down, and he was holding the journal that I had given him in 2011 from Florence, Italy, where I had traveled abroad for a semester. I found out that he had been writing in it to me since the previous December. As I was looking at the journal, Sam got down on one knee, said some very sweet things to me, and asked me to be his wife.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? I would relive that day in a heartbeat. Waking up that day was probably the best feeling ever, knowing that it was the day I got to marry Sam. Getting ready with my mom and all my friends was so much fun, but the best moment was probably our first look. I will never forget Sam’s face. It was so sweet and just the perfect moment–I’ll never forget it.

We had two readings that were both Bible verses. One was from Ruth, and to paraphrase, it says “Where you go, I will go. Your people will be my people.” The other reading, from 1 John, talks about the importance of making Christ the foundation of your marriage.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. It was very important to me that my mom was there when I found the dress, so she flew in during one of the last weekends of November and we prayed that I would find the dress then. After finding absolutely nothing at the first store, we went to an upscale consignment boutique for wedding dresses. I saw my dress hanging outside of my dressing room for me to try on, and immediately knew it was the one. Before I came out to show my mom, mother-in-law, sister-in-law, and niece, I said “Y’all, just warning you, THIS is the dress.” I loved it…and it had pockets!

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I loved the café lighting. Our entire wedding was outside, because Palmetto Landing is too pretty to do anything else. We had café lighting over the dance floor and the reception space, and it was just magical.

Sam and I love being from the South. We take it pretty seriously, and especially having a wedding in South Carolina, which I personally feel is the ultimate Southern state, we had to include some Southern touches! Our guests ate chicken and waffles as hors d’oeuvres during cocktail hour, and we served our specialty cocktails out of a mason jar.

Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Sam and I are big fans of the band Kings of Leon. One night, after we had just eaten dinner at Moe’s, Sam told me he had a song he wanted me to listen to for our possible first dance song. He played me “Beautiful War” and we immediately knew this song was it. We danced in the parking lot together outside of his Tahoe.

Sam and I aren’t huge cake people, so we bought several pies from Publix! It turned out to be a huge hit. A close family friend baked a mixed berry cobbler just for Sam and I to eat, and I wanted to devour it!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met in Buena Vista, Colorado in 2010 while working as horse wranglers at Trail West, a Young Life family camp. It wasn’t love at first sight, but it was friends at first sight. We truly were just best friends for the summer. After a few more summers of working together and being apart during the school year (he went to Clemson and I went to Harding University in Arkansas), I finally decided to make my move! So in the middle of the summer 2012, I asked Sam to go get ice cream with me. Ironic, because neither of us really like ice cream. I told him I had feelings for him, and soon after that, it was apparent that the feelings were mutual. We started dating that August and have never looked back!
When did y’all get married? May 10, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 185
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? The fact that Caroline, our wedding planner, knew that I had a budget I needed to stick to was a huge help. She would switch vendors, find me the best options for our budget, and she just understood. Also, looking at a consignment shop for wedding dresses was such a great idea! It saved SO much money.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Married life is wonderful! We are still getting settled into our little tiny house in downtown Greenville and we are loving it. Marriage is tough, but it’s a beautiful thing. We are not sure what is in store for us, but we love traveling, eating at new restaurants, and being outside!

Photographer: Aaron and Jillian Photography / Videographer: Nat Gove / Planner: Caroline Wright of Palmetto Landing / Venue: Palmetto Landing / Dessert Baker: Publix Bakery / Caterer: Royal Grand Events / Band: The Company Band / Bride’s Earrings: BHLDN / Hair and Makeup Artist: Charleston Events Hair and Makeup / Bride’s Shoes: Copper Penny / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: J. Crew / Men’s Attire: Smith & James

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Kim @ Hello Wedding reply

    This wedding literally brought tears to my eyes it’s so pretty and simple (and as always you make me want to move to the south!).

  2. avatar Nicole reply

    Beautiful! I think I wore the same gown. Mori Lee. It wasn’t what I thought I wanted style wise, then I put it on, put my hands in the pockets, and fell in love.

    Congratulations to you and your husband!

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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