Bride Bethann shares her magical garden wedding at Keswick Vineyards!
I am delighted to introduce you to today’s bride, Bethann! While I am admittedly not a flower person myself, Bethann sure is, and she knew she wanted the flowers at her Virginia wedding to have a “wow factor.” Southern Blooms sure delivered — I would even venture to say Bethann and Graham’s wedding has me reconsidering just how lovely blooms can be! I think the addition of lush florals perfectly complimented the gorgeous backdrop of Keswick Vineyards, wouldn’t you agree? Of course, Bethann’s silk Temperley London gown (a completely different choice than she had imagined herself wearing!) simply added to the magical combination.
Thanks to Rachel May for sharing this lovely day with us!
Tell us your love story in one sentence. After years of unsuccessful dating, we decided to give online dating a try and had an instant match!
Tell us all about the proposal! We were on vacation in Kill Devil Hills, NC and Graham insisted we wake up early our first morning there to watch the sunrise. I was somewhat suspicious, as Graham is not a morning person, and he jumped out of bed at 5:30am when the alarm went off! We took our two dogs for a walk along the beach and right after sunrise, Graham got down on one knee and proposed!
I really struggled with the idea of doing a first look, but ultimately decided to and am so glad we did! I had always dreamed about walking down the aisle and watching my soon-to-be husband’s expression as he saw me in my wedding dress for the first time. I was afraid the first look would take away from that, but it didn’t. My photographer was able to capture me walking up to Graham, tapping him on the back, and him turning around to see me. It was a magical moment and she was able to capture it all. We were also able to complete our bridal party photos prior to the ceremony, which allowed for us to head straight to cocktail hour after the ceremony and enjoy more time with our guests.
Exactly one month prior to our wedding date, we buried a bottle of bourbon upside down at Keswick Vineyards, which we then dug up prior to our ceremony. This tradition definitely worked, because we had the most beautiful, sunny day! It was also important for me to wear my mother’s veil and also my paternal grandmother’s engagement ring. My grandmother passed away in 1995 and I was very close to her. Wearing her ring on my wedding day was a tangible reminder that she was there with me on such an important day. Graham and I also chose to write letters to one another and exchange gifts prior to our first look. He had a sterling silver necklace made with my new married monogram and also gave me a pair of diamond earrings. I gifted Graham a new watch.
My mom, matron-of-honor, and her mother accompanied me in Georgetown for a day of dress shopping. I had always envisioned an A-line, lace dress but also wanted to wear something different that I had never seen on another bride. My matron-of-honor’s mother, Angie Cavallaro, was well-known (she’s now retired) in the Northern Virginia/DC area for her bridal alterations, and suggested I try on a more form fitting dress. It was my last appointment of the day and the store was featuring a trunk show for Temperley London. I selected a silk, draped bodice v-neck dress with flutter sleeves and open shoulders (definitely not A-line or lace) and cried as soon as I put it on. I just knew it was my dress!
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Graham and I are wine club members at Keswick Vineyards and spend a lot of our spare time there. The winery has a fenced in area specifically for dogs, so we’ve always enjoyed taking our two dogs and allowing them to play while we do a wine tasting and enjoy the scenery. Additionally, I would take Route 231 traveling back and forth to college and would drive past Keswick Vineyards. I remember thinking to myself at the time that Edgewood Estate at Keswick Vineyards was gorgeous, and that one day I wanted to be married there!
What were some of the most meaningful or special parts of your ceremony? We did not write our own vows but instead combined a couple options our officiant provided us. My favorite phrase from our vows was, “I will celebrate your joys and victories and rejoice in your achievements.” It is so easy to become selfish in a relationship and only focus on your own feelings, and this verse is a reminder to also continuously praise and support my husband’s achievements. We also chose two readings. Graham’s cousin read an excerpt from “Captain Corelli’s Mandolin” by Louis de Bernieres and my good friend read Colossians 3:12-17.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. We used a string quartet during our ceremony. Bach’s Air was played for the wedding party entrance. Pachelbel’s Canon was played during the processional. I have always loved both of these pieces, and it was an easy decision to incorporate both into the ceremony. For the recessional we chose the Beatles “All You Need Is Love.” Both of us grew up listening to the Beatles, and agreed that this would be such a fun way to exit the ceremony as husband and wife! For our first dance we chose Ray LaMontagne’s “You Are the Best Thing.”
For cocktail hour, we had a custom signature cocktail sign made with drawings of our two dogs. The “Roo” was Graham’s signature drink – an old fashioned – and the “Lula” was my signature drink – a classic mojito. For the reception, I wanted the flowers to be the wow factor. We had a ladder suspended horizontally over our head table and our florist decorated it with greenery, flowers, vines, and hanging prism lanterns. We felt as if we were sitting underneath our own little magical garden!
When did y’all get married? August 19, 2017
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 110
What was your favorite thing about wedding planning? I really enjoyed the wedding planning process and the many occasions it allowed for us to share with family and friends. From the food tasting with our parents, to bridesmaid dress shopping with my bridal party, we really enjoyed the time spent with loved ones.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I absolutely love flowers and knew from the start they would be one of the most expensive costs of the day. I price shopped a few different florists and also incorporated a lot of greenery in the bouquets and centerpieces to cut costs. We also brought a ton of plastic containers so we could take the majority of the flowers home the day after the wedding. Additionally, we felt that having quality photos was more important than spending money on a videographer. While it would have been nice to have our wedding day captured on video, it was an easy decision to save money by not using a videographer and instead using the best photographer!
What was your most memorable moment from your wedding day? In addition to doing a first look with Graham, I also did a first look with my father. I am a daddy’s girl and extremely close to my father, so it was important to incorporate this before he walked me down the aisle.
What advice would you give to someone currently planning a wedding? With the popularity of social media and sites like Pinterest, it is very easy to become overwhelmed with so many wedding ideas. Stay true to yourself and what is important to you and your groom. While the options are fun, you don’t have to have the photo booth or food truck at your reception if you don’t want to!
Photographer: Rachel May Photography | Venue and Day-of coordinator: Keswick Vineyards | Florist: Southern Blooms | Wedding Cake Baker: Cakes by Rachel | Caterer: C&O Restaurant | Rentals: MS Events | Lighting: Skyline Tent Company | DJ:
DJ Dennis Payne | Welcome sign: Oaky Designs | Signature drink sign: GG Prints | Paper products: Papetrie Fine Stationery and Gifts | Bride’s gown: “Tabitha” by Temperley London | Bride’s jewelry: Ti Adoro from Lovely Bride | Hair stylist and makeup artist: Avenue 42 | Bride’s shoes: “Abigail” in blush by Badgley Mischka | Bridesmaid dresses: “Parker Long” and “Catherine Long” in Tiny Dancer by Ceremony by Joanna August | Groom and groomsmen suits: Custom from Indochino | Custom cookies: Sweet Bella Bakery | Ceremony and cocktail hour music: Encore String Quartet