Bride Amy shares the festive details of her New Year’s Eve wedding at Boone Hall Plantation!
It’s almost 2018, friends, and I hope some of you are headed to a wedding on Sunday night! I’ve always wanted to go to a wedding on New Year’s Eve. Everyone is already in a celebratory mood, other plans are usually overrated, and while my wedding-loving heart has a lot of favorites, nothing beats a dressy winter fete in my book! Bride Amy agrees: “New Year’s Eve was an unreal time to start our marriage. Not only is it already a party, but it’s also a time to reflect on your past friendships and look forward to the future.”
I’m so excited to introduce today’s bride, Amy, to tell you how she created a New Year’s Eve to remember for her guests (including Hoppin’ John!!) as she married her military man, Ryan, in Charleston!
Thank you to Sean Money + Elizabeth Fay and Fox Events for sharing this beautiful wedding!
Tell us the highlights of finding your wedding dress. I had found a designer I loved, Berta Bridal, and she was having a trunk show at L’Fay Bridal in NYC. we decided to round up all of the women in my family and Ryan’s and have a girls weekend to see some plays and go dress shopping. We pulled several to try on and to my surprise, we fell in love with the first dress I had pulled. It looked nothing like what I had pictured for myself, but it was perfect in every way.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I wanted to make sure our bridal parties didn’t spend a fortune to participate in our wedding, so we took care of the bridesmaid dresses and tuxes for both parties. I used Rent the Runway for the girls, and it was very cost-effective.
We chose Grace Church Cathedral after we went to visit one Sunday when they were having a special service called the Kirkin’ o’ the Tartan. Some of our best family friends live in Scotland, so we were excited to participate in a service honoring their heritage. The church was breathtakingly beautiful, and the bagpipers were unbelievable. We couldn’t wait to invite our Scottish friends to our wedding there. As for our reception venue, we had a lot of out of town guests and wanted to treat them to a quintessential Charleston wedding. There is something about the drive down the Avenue of Oaks there.
What advice would you give to someone currently planning a wedding? Weddings have so many elements that you don’t think about when you begin planning. I would suggest sitting down together and prioritizing two or three of the big details. This way, when you get together with your planner, they know that the band, bar, and flowers are most important and they can help you save on other details.
We had several brainstorming sessions with Lauren Fox of Fox Events. There are so many details in a wedding, I struggled to picture it all complete, but Lauren took all of my ideas and tied them together.
Our favorite Southern detail was serving “Hoppin’ John” on New Year’s Eve. Many of our guests were not familiar with this Southern recipe featuring black-eyed peas, bacon, and collards. The appetizer was delivered to each guest in a tiny mason jar, and the waiters shared the significance of Hoppin’ John, which is thought to bring a prosperous year filled with luck.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Our most memorable song was our first dance to “You Make my Dreams Come True” by Hall and Oates. It’s not a traditional first dance song since it’s quirky and upbeat. Ryan and I always loved this song and felt like it explains us, so we took some dance lessons and had a jazzy wedding dance choreographed for fun. This was a nice bonding experience leading up to the wedding.
We had Jim Smeal design our wedding cake to mimic the lace on my gown. It was one of my favorite details from the wedding: he nailed it. Not only was the cake stunning, but tasted amazing too.
Tell us your love story in one sentence. Once blind dates to the 8th grade dance, serendipity brought us back together 10 years later.
Tell us all about the proposal! While we were dating, Ryan was going through the special forces qualification course in Fayetteville, NC while I worked in Charleston, SC. There was a phase in training when Ryan was completely out of contact for about 3 months, with only one or two weekends back in civilization. What I didn’t know is that during those few short days, Ryan was planning our engagement. When Ryan completed this long stretch of training, he drove to Columbia, SC to ask my dad for my hand in marriage, and my dad tearfully (happy tears!) said yes. Ryan came home Labor Day Weekend and took me on a date. I thought we were celebrating his halfway point in the army. After dinner, we stopped by our favorite spot, Zero George, to grab a drink and see our friend Justin. We were taken to the porch and at that moment, I knew it was about to happen. The porch was covered in candles, flowers, strawberries, and a bucket of champagne to celebrate. It was perfect: just the two of us, sitting on a swing, laughing and crying.
When did y’all get married? December 31, 2016.
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 150.
Did you decide to do a first look? We opted not to do a first look. I had dreamed about a traditional wedding and couldn’t wait to see the look on Ryan’s face as we saw each other for the first time as I walked down the aisle. It was a moment I will never forget.
What was your favorite detail from your wedding? My favorite detail was our invitations and all of the stationary from Studio R. I had no idea invitations could include the level of detail that they did. Since it was New Year’s Eve, we used gold foil press and lined the invitation in glitter. The envelopes were black with gold calligraphy. They were so ME!
What was the hardest part about planning your wedding? The logistics of having a holiday wedding were difficult at times but worth every bit of the trouble. Our reception venue, Boone Hall, closed at 10pm, so we decided to have an after party to ring in the new year on the rooftop of the grand bohemian hotel.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? More than $100,000
What was your most memorable moment from your wedding day? We chose to sit at a table with both of our families since it’s so rare to have everyone in one place. We will never forget the warm glow on everyone’s face from the candlelight or the laughs that we shared. In the crazy hustle of a wedding day, it was one of the few moments when time seemed to slow down and memories were made.
Photographer: Sean Money and Elizabeth Fay | Planner and Florist: Lauren Fox, Fox Events | Videographer: Wedding Headline | Ceremony Venue: Grace Church Cathedral | Reception Venue: Boone Hall Plantation | Wedding Cake Baker: Jim Smeal | Caterer: Cru Catering | Band: Groovetown | Paper Products: Studio R | Bride’s Gown: Berta Bridal | Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist: Charlotte Belk | Bride’s Shoes: Stuart Weitzman | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Monique Lhuillier from Rent the Runway | Menswear: Berlins