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We loved bringing you even more super Southern ideas in our 2011 series the “Ultimate Southern Challenge,” and we’re excited to start it up again in 2012! In case you missed the festivities last year, we focused on mason jars and escort cards. The response to both Challenges was fantastic, and the entries, even better!

This time around our starting point is the perfect blank canvas: burlap! Burlap is an inexpensive material, and though it’s most often seen in rustic settings, we’re excited to see what possibilities y’all will dream up for this humble cloth! To get your wheels turning, here are a few of the favorite burlap details we’ve featured on the blog:

A burlap bouquet cuff (photo by Pasha Belman) and a burlap bouquet wrap (photo by Brion Hopkins)

Sweet burlap ring bearer pillows (photo by Landon Jacob Productions)

A burlap-covered bar (photo by 13:13 Photography)

Vendors, feel free to team up, though your submission doesn’t have to be anything elaborate — in fact, we want these ideas to be easily executable by brides everywhere!

A few details:

– Your submission can take any form (as long as it involves burlap!), but the most important piece is that it be SOUTHERN.

– Anyone can enter as an individual or a team — vendors, brides and grooms, and wedding or Southern enthusiasts alike. And you don’t have to be Southern to enter!

– To enter, please send 5-10 professional-quality photos at 600 pixels wide and a brief description of your submission to howdy at iloveswmag dot com. Subject line: “Ultimate Southern Challenge: Burlap.”

– Include the names and websites of all your team members, and a list of materials and links to sources used. Please include directions for any DIY projects you may have done.

All submissions must be received by 11:59pm on March 8, 2012. Submissions received after the 9th will not be eligible.

– Our favorite submissions will be posted throughout the week of March 12th, and the winner, who gets ultimate Southern bragging rights, will be announced the following week.

– Submissions cannot be posted or tweeted until published on Southern Weddings.

We can’t WAIT to see what y’all come up with! Questions? Leave them below, and we’ll do our best to answer them!

P.S. Want to check out the winners of our last two Challenges? Go here + here!

Landon Jacob Productions is a fabulous member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

emily Written with love by Emily
  1. avatar Taryn reply

    Can you submit more than one entry into the contest?

  2. avatar Gina reply

    Hello! I love a challenge that involves creativity… I am portuguese from Portugal… can I enter the challenge?
    Love all your amazing work!

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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When New Yorker, Courtney married her beau, Chris, on a farm in Georgia, she knew she wanted their wedding to be the perfect combination of city and country. The mission was achieved with some glam outfits paired with rustic details. Courtney’s Carolina Herrera dress looked stunning next to her gingham-clad husband, and the surprising (and ingenious!) inclusion of wheat sprays in the bouquets stood out against the ruffled and purple dresses that her bridesmaids donned. The lakeside wedding earns its Southern stripes with more than just location and clever juxtaposition, though. Courtney + Chris included details like the burlap-backed invitations, monogrammed flower girl sash, and sweet ceremony wording. We have to send hugs the way of Something Pretty Fine Art Photography for sharing this wedding with us!

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. Chris and I casually dated in college at the University of Dayton in Ohio and stayed in touch for a few years after. I remember him calling after 9/11 to check in since I lived not too far from the twin towers and again a year or so later on my birthday. At some point after that, we lost touch. Ten years after we last saw each other in person, we reconnected. I moved to Atlanta and a year later, we got engaged on New Year’s Eve. After a nearly ten-month engagement, we were married at a private barn near Reynolds Plantation, where Chris’ parents live and we frequently visit.
Describe the proposal. I have always loved New Year’s Eve and have celebrated it in a big way for as long as I could remember. That year though, Chris and I decided that we wanted to stay home – and we ended up getting engaged. Chris made the proposal all about “firsts,” symbolizing the start of our new life. He proposed in the first house we lived in together, at 1am on the 1st day of the New Year (1/1/11). We got married on the 1st day of the month too but we actually didn’t plan that on purpose.
Three adjectives that describe the day are: Happy, intimate and peaceful (and stressful)!
In what month did you get married? October
How many guests attended your wedding? 140
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I loved having an outdoor reception with bistro lighting strewn across the dining and dancing area.
Tell us about finding your wedding dress: I have been in the fashion industry for years, so dress scouting was a very fun part of the planning process! When I got engaged, I checked out every spot in Atlanta and almost settled on a few dresses, but wanted to go back to NYC to shop so I could see the full collections. I checked out a few places like Vera Wang and Saks and, again, almost decided on a dress. Then, the afternoon before I was flying back to Atlanta (about to purchase said dress) I relooked at a few “tearsheets” of dresses that I had pulled out from magazines and I was reminded of a dress from Carolina Herrera that I had to try. In that instant I just knew it was the one, even before seeing it in person. I called the Carolina Herrera shop on Madison and they were completely booked. I was leaving the next day – and was so mad at myself for not booking an appointment with them sooner. About 15 minutes later, Michelle Kim from the shop called back and said they could, in fact, see me the next day. I went in, tried on the dress and that was it. Michelle turned out to be the loveliest, sweetest and most professional bridal consultant ever. I absolutely love my dress and feel completely cheated that I was only able to wear it for such a short time!
Describe your wedding flowers: My goal was to create a high-low, county-city, high fashion-rustic vibe across all aspects of my wedding. So, to strike that balance against my dress and the dresses of the bridesmaids, I went rustic with the flowers. I had something specific in mind and our florist did an amazing job creating it. We did all white, lush flowers along with wheat sprays. It was tied with a burlap wrap that had red ticking.

Photographer: Something Pretty Fine Art Photography // Videographer: Scott Felsen of Golden Weddings // Planner: No Regrets Events // Venue: Private Barn in Greensboro, GA // Florist: Le Petit Jardin // Caterer: Hallie Janes // Rentals, Linens, Lighting: Hallie Janes // Paper Products: Stationary by Tickled Ink, Burlap Invite Backers from The Blue Envelope, Personalized Items from KaydenAshley on Etsy // Bride’s Dress: Carolina Herrera // Bride’s Hair Accessories/Veil: Veil custom made by Ruby V // Bride’s Shoes: Miu Miu from Bergdorf Goodman // Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Haute Hippie

nicoleyang Written with love by Nicole
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  4. avatar Bella reply

    Beautiful wedding! I love the groom’s attire. I am taking a stab and guessing his shirt is a gingham shirt from Vineyard Vines. I would love to know where he got his look from for my own wedding.

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: