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Confession time, y’all: I am totally smitten with today’s darling couple! Berkley and Jack met at summer camp, started their relationship over AOL Instant Messenger, and spent the next ten years growing up and growing in love. Their beautiful wedding was a testament to both the history that they drew inspiration from (they were married at the same church where Berkley’s parents were married, and by the same pastor!) and the life that they are creating for themselves–they love the town of Saxapahaw so much, they moved there after the wedding, and now get to see their reception venue every day!

Thank you so much to our Blue Ribbon Vendor Robyn Van Dyke for sharing this special day with us!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Jack and I decided to see each other for the first time when the church doors opened and I walked down the aisle to him. However, we did have a “behind-the-door” moment before the ceremony. We held hands, prayed, and exchanged journals that we had written in throughout our engagement. I did have a first look with my dad though, and it was so special. It was one of the only times I’ve ever seen my dad cry. Let’s just say, emotions were high!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. At first, I thought I wanted to wear my mom’s wedding dress, so we brought the dress to a bridal salon to talk to them about remaking it. I was excited about that, but also had a little trouble envisioning how it would look once it was completed. On our way home, we had an appointment at another bridal shop in Salisbury. I tried on a few dresses, and then THE ONE. It was exactly what I had been hoping for, and my mom’s veil complemented it perfectly.

Our ceremony site (St. Mark’s Church in Burlington, North Carolina) was a no-brainer. My parents were married in that sanctuary by the same pastor 34 years before us, I was baptized and grew up in the church, and Jack’s family has also been members for over a decade.

What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? One of my former college roommates, Sarah Anne, read Philippians 2:1-11. Sarah Anne was the first of our friends to get married, so it was special to hear her speak words that she’s living out. One of our favorite snippets of the passage reads: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility, consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” This is actually one of the “camp verses” from the summer camp that Jack and I grew up going to (and where our dating story started), so it’s extra special to us.

Our reception site (The Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw) was a perfect fit for us. It’s a beautiful restored cotton mill with huge ceilings, exposed brick, and a riverside deck in an idyllic rural village. Jack and I had spent many summer Saturday nights at the village’s farmers’ market and concert series in Saxapahaw, and we love it there so much that we decided to move there after the wedding. Now, we get to see our reception venue every single day!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Although it turned out perfectly, the logistics of the reception venue were a bit of a challenge. The space is typically a concert venue, so there’s not a designated person to coordinate wedding details. The whole process was a labor of love, and we’re grateful for everyone who had a hand in making it happen.

Our first dance was to “If I Could Build My Whole World Around You” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. It has a girl part and a boy part, and Jack and I know all the words. He was a little nervous that I was going to sing the whole time instead of focusing on dancing with him!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Our cake was from Maxie B’s Bakery in Greensboro. My maid of honor (and college roommate for all four years) worked there while she was in high school, so she spoiled us by making their recipes during college. Jack and I chose layers of lemon almond buttercream, fresh strawberry buttercream, and pink lemonade. Our cake was a bit of a splurge, but it was so delicious!

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? At the end of it, you’ll be married! We tried to keep that as the focus amidst the craziness of wedding planning. Jack did such a great job in grounding us throughout the process–we did little things like going back to the spot of our first date, opening the car sunroof to see the stars while playing our favorite songs, etc. These things reminded us where we came from and why we were getting married in the first place.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. In 2002 (when we had just turned 14 and 15), a new method of communication and courtship was sweeping across teendom. After waving to me at summer camp, Jack decided that the next logical step was to communicate. After discovering my screen name, our AOL Instant Messenger dating was underway! We made it official on August 24, 2002, and Jack placed his first phone call to me later that afternoon. Our first “date” was that night at a neighbor’s birthday party. We held hands for the first time (while being showered by a golf course sprinkler) and even kissed for the first time (next to a holly bush as my mom arrived to pick me up). Over the next decade, we experienced many defining moments together: first cell phones, first cars, track meets, high school graduations, the UNC experience, and enduring long distance dating after college. The distance strengthened us and deepened our desire to make the biggest (and easiest) decision of our lives–moving from first loves to forever loves.
Tell us all about the proposal! After a friend’s wedding in Washington, DC, we headed east to the Outer Banks to check out Jockey’s Ridge State Park. After a stroll on the coast and a strategically-timed bathroom stop allowing Jack to get the ring, he led me out onto the dunes. We took in the view for a few minutes, and then Jack sat me down and gave me a homemade photo book chronicling our 10+ years as a couple. That day was our “love anniversary”–10 years from the day when he first told me he loved me. At the end of the book, Jack asked me to stand up for a hug, after which he got down on his knee and forgot everything he had practiced, only managing to say, “Berkley McRay Webster, will you marry me?” After hugging and kissing and jumping and basking in our newly-engaged glow, Jack hurried me to the car for a three-hour drive to Chapel Hill and another massive surprise at Spanky’s Restaurant. I had no idea that there would be 40+ family members and friends (from as far as California and Wisconsin) awaiting us when we walked up the stairs. So much joy!
When did y’all get married? June 7, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 230
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our day was steeped in tradition, from me wearing my mom’s veil and the groomsmen wearing traditional tuxes, to Jack’s dad and brother as the best men, to getting married in the same church and by the same pastor who married my parents. Our reception site itself, an old cotton mill, paid tribute to the South’s history, and we had Southern details like monogrammed bar runners and framed silhouettes. Our food, catered by the Saxapahaw General Store (recently featured in Garden and Gun), was local, farm-to-fork, and distinctly Southern.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? My mom was our wedding planner extraordinaire, and she found a lot of the decorative elements (old chandeliers, menu board, mirrors, etc.) at consignment shops or yard sales. Also, to get an idea for our flowers, my mom and I went to Michaels to pull silk flowers that coordinated with the bridesmaids’ dresses and color scheme. A few of the flowers that matched the dresses (freesias and thistles) weren’t available in the right color and/or would have been very expensive to order fresh, so we bought the silk versions on sale at Michaels, and the florist mixed them in. You couldn’t even tell!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We love being married! Jack works in Elon and I work in Durham, so Saxapahaw is like our little oasis in the middle. It’s so much fun to come home to each other and do the most mundane things. We’re waiting a while for animals and kids, but we did just get a couple of house plants!

Photographer: Robyn Van Dyke Photography / Videographer: Steven Ebert / Ceremony Venue: St. Mark’s Church / Reception Venue: Haw River Ballroom / Florist: Custom Floral Creations / Wedding Cake: Maxie B’s Bakery & Dessert Cafe / Caterer: Saxapahaw General Store / Rentals: American Party Rentals / Band: Reality Show Band / Paper Products: Reaves Engraving / Bride’s Gown: “Emily” by Robert Bullock / Bridal Salon: Bellissima of Salisbury / Hair Stylist: Fire Salon and Spa / Makeup Artist: Makeup By B.B. / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Adrianna Papell / Men’s Attire: T.N. Boone Tuxedos / Wedding Party Transportation: A Formal Affair Limo / Guest Transportation: The Bridge Bus

Robyn Van Dyke is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
6 Comments
  1. avatar featured: southern weddings » Robyn Van Dyke Photography Blog reply

    […] We are so overjoyed to have one of our all-time favorite weddings & couples featured on Southern Weddings today!! Their love story is bound to warm your heart and make you smile too, so be sure to check […]

  2. avatar Leigh reply

    I love that monogrammed table runner–where did she get it?!

  3. avatar Dana reply

    the reception venue is awesome! I adore their love story!

  4. avatar Nicole reply

    Beautiful! Is there anyway I could find out where the bride got her earrings? They’re exactly what I’ve been searching for!

  5. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    Great love story and a beautiful wedding! I love their “alternative first look” photo!

  6. avatar Kim @ Hello Wedding reply

    Just beautiful and their story and the love of their family and friends makes it even more beautiful. I can’t imagine how meaningful that would be to be married in the same church that you grew up in. You are making me want to move to the South!

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On my first day at Southern Weddings, the girls asked me two very important questions: do I prefer dark or milk chocolate (dark, always), and what is my favorite color–and to be careful answering because I couldn’t change it! I said peach, and as well as loving the peach monogrammed binder on my desk as a result of that conversation, I’ll never tire of peachy weddings! Courtney and Lamar hit it out of the park with the prettiest blooms and the most amazing pair of Jimmy Choos I’ve ever seen, but even more than that, I love their romantic love story. The way Lamar proposed was epic, and the last dance at their wedding sounds like a dream!

Thank you so much to Matt and Julie for sharing this lovely day with us!

We had planned a post-bar trip to Italy and had an overnight stay in Paris, but Lamar convinced me that he was not going to propose on the trip because he was too nervous to bring the ring through security and didn’t want to worry about it while we were traveling. Knowing Lamar, that made sense! Right when we got to Paris, I was ready to start painting the town, but he convinced me to take a shower and do my hair (which is great since we had just gotten off an overnight flight). I noticed he was being impatient and questioned him about why he was rushing me after he was the one that told me to get ready. As soon as we got to the bridge, we started walking to the middle and I said “Oh, I wish we had brought a lock.” He said “I actually brought one” and pulled out a lock with the words “Will you marry me?” engraved on it with our names and the date. He got down on one knee, said some really sweet things I don’t remember, and asked me to marry him. He then told me that there was a photographer on the other side of the bridge who was photographing the whole thing! She opened champagne for us and took more pictures. We spent the rest of the afternoon wondering around St. Germaine. It was the greatest day!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I looked and looked! The first time I went dress shopping, my mom and sister came with me and we had a great day. We tried on tons of dresses and had lunch at Neiman Marcus in downtown Dallas. I didn’t find my dress that day, and ended up going to every store in the area over the next couple weeks, but I couldn’t find the perfect dress. Finally, I went back to Stanley Korshak to try on a dress that I had liked the first day we went shopping. While I was there, I spotted “the dress” and wondered why I hadn’t liked it the first time I went in. I tried it on and it was perfect!

First Baptist is the church I went to growing up. I was baptized there and was maid of honor at my sister’s wedding there, as well as a flower girl there many times. It was so special to finally walk down the aisle there as the bride at our own wedding.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? So many things! We had a cigar roller, our reception was at an old Southern train station, we had a country band, our signature drink was an old fashioned, and we served chicken and waffle sliders, fried green tomatoes, fried chicken and mashed potatoes, and shrimp and grits.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We had a one-tiered wedding cake with smaller cakes around it on pretty white cake stands. All the cakes were displayed on antique pieces of furniture.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. When people say that you find love when you least expect it, they are not kidding. I met Lamar on a Monday night in the law library at SMU. I had chosen to study in a different area of the library, and I sat down a few tables away from Lamar. Of course, he thinks this was no coincidence! Over the course of finals, we began to talk. Talking led to a friendship, which led to our first date. Over the summer, our friendship grew, but I knew that Lamar wanted it to be something more. He agreed to give me some space over the summer, but we still hung out all the time. One day, while having dinner with my parents, I told them about Lamar, and they both said that my face lit up when I talked about him. That is when I began to think seriously about dating him. In September, Lamar told me that he was tired of being “just friends” and we decided to make it official. Dating Lamar is the second best decision I have ever made. Our story reminds me that God’s plan is so much greater than my own!
When did y’all get married? May 3, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 350
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? No, we are pretty traditional and I wanted to see the look on his face when he saw me for the first time walking down the aisle.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Our first dance was to “I Can Love You Like That” because that is how Lamar acted toward me when we first started dating. He was the one who initiated the relationship, and in the end, he was the one who could really make all my fairy tale dreams come true (part of the lyrics are, “they read you Cinderella, you hoped it would come true”)!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My something old was my handkerchief made out of my mom’s wedding dress and my something borrowed was her original Tiffany’s wedding band. My something new was my shoes. My something blue was a clip-on earring from my grandmother that I used as a brooch on my bouquet.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Getting all the pieces together. We had a ton of details and a ton of vendors. Thank goodness for our wedding planner, Lottie!
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? We made our own photo booth–I ordered props and a backdrop. We also saved money by buying our own wine and beer.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? The Jeremy Powers Band was amazing! Jeremy did an amazing job working with us to coordinate the night. We got tons of compliments on how great their performance was!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Our last dance under the stars outside by the railroad tracks. I loved hearing the sounds of the trains going by!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Enjoy the process. Know that you cannot control every aspect, and let the day happen the way it naturally does. Some of my favorite memories were things I didn’t expect or plan!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Getting our house in order! We are in the middle of “wedding season” with our friends, so we have barely had a weekend at home. We are looking forward to unpacking and just enjoying making our home together.

Photographer: Matt and Julie / Videographer: Darren Pike / Planner: Grit + Gold / Ceremony Venue: First Baptist Church Sherman / Reception Venue: Katy Depot / Florist: Southern Table / Cake Baker: Mom’s Bakery / Caterer: At Your Service / Rentals and Lighting: Big D Rentals / Band: Jeremy Powers Band / Bridal Salon: Stanley Korshak / Paper Products: Caroline Creates / Hair and Makeup: Jill at Blushington Dallas / Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: J. Crew

lisa Written with love by Lisa
9 Comments
  1. avatar Kat reply

    LOVE that cake display!!!!

  2. avatar Laura reply

    Those florals are AMAZING! So gorgeous!

  3. avatar Matt + Julie reply

    Y’all! Thank you so much for this feature, it looks gorgeous on here :) !!!

  4. avatar Callie Davis reply

    I am so in love with those florals! Especially her INCREDIBLE bouquet! I also prefer dark chocolate !

  5. avatar Lindsay {Everistta} reply

    In love with those gold sparkly linens! Great color palette in this wedding.

  6. avatar Bridget reply

    Those charcoal bridesmaid dresses are a fantastically chic complement to the sweet peachy flowers. Very stylish.

  7. avatar Orange County Party Rentals reply

    Gorgeous wedding! Loved the beautiful details done so exquisitely. The reception area decor with the touch of shimmer looks pretty.

  8. avatar Catherine Grace reply

    I love the gold glitter backdrop !

  9. avatar Lottie Fowler reply

    Thanks for the love! This was such a fun design and even more fun was working with this super sweet couple!

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Oh y’all, now you know Miss Natalie is a true blue Southern bride when she says the biggest planning challenge was working around football season (so very Sweet Tea Society of her!). I can relate as my very own mother-in-law made us well aware that she would not be in attendance if we wed on Iron Bowl weekend! All football alliances aside, Natalie and Parker’s ceremony location might be one of my very favorites–I’ve actually had the pleasure of attending service at the Seaside Chapel and it’s even more stunning in person! All those candles on the altar have me seriously swooning!

Big thank you’s to our sweet friends at Pure 7 Studios for sharing this lovely day with us!

Heavens, those cookies are so stinkin’ cute!

Describe your wedding flowers. Our flowers were beautiful! They were mostly white with a touch of blush, and included roses, dahlias, ranunculus, and lisianthus.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Having all of our friends and family with us on such a special day!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My something old and blue was my grandmother’s handkerchief that my sister had monogrammed with her initials in blue for her wedding day — I had my initials monogrammed right under hers and wrapped it around my bouquet.

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. Finding my dress was such a wonderful experience. I traveled from Birmingham to Atlanta with my mom and sister to search for the perfect gown; I knew I had found the right one when they both started crying as soon as I walked out of the fitting room!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We chose not to do a first look. We really wanted to keep with tradition and have the experience of seeing each other for the first time walking down the aisle.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? All of the bridesmaids wore pearls and there were monograms everywhere!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Planning a wedding in the middle of football season!!!!!!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Our wedding cake was SO delicious! It was four layers in different flavors: two strawberry, one red velvet, and one vanilla. Parker is not a cake person, so we also had a cheesecake bar with different toppings.

And don’t miss Natalie and Parker’s sweet film by Momentus Films!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met in Destin, Florida. Parker lived in the area and I was on vacation with a group of my college girlfriends. I agreed to go to dinner with him the next time I was in town, and that was that!
Tell us all about the proposal! I had just graduated college the previous weekend and we went to the beach to celebrate. I was getting ready to go to lunch when Parker told me he had to run a few errands and would be back soon. When I came downstairs, I found roses with a note asking me to come and meet him on the beach where we had first met, and he proposed there. He had made dinner reservations for later that night, and when I walked into the restaurant, my whole family was waiting to surprise me!
When did y’all get married? September 14, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 100
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $75,000-$100,000
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? My wedding planner made me the happiest bride ever! She put everything together and made sure it was absolutely perfect on our wedding day so that we could enjoy our friends and family.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Seeing each other for the first time–neither us of will ever forget that moment!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Enjoy every moment. It goes by so quickly.

Photographer: Pure 7 Studios / Videographer: Momentus Films / Planner: Jennifer Fisher / Ceremony Venue: Seaside Interfaith Chapel / Reception Venue: Lyceum Lawn / Flowers, Rentals, and Lighting: Events by Nouveau / Wedding Cake: Confections on the Coast / Caterer: Townsend Catering / Band or DJ: Heritage / Bride’s Gown: Lazaro / Paper Products: Alan’s Invitations / Bride’s Veil: Bridals by Lori / Hair Stylist: Katie Tapscott / Bride’s Shoes: “Lang Sandal” by Jimmy Choo / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “JH5320” by Jim Hjelm / Men’s Attire: Men’s Wearhouse

marissa Written with love by Marissa
7 Comments
  1. avatar Ann reply

    Off course working around football season is a big challenge! In fact, each time around the year has its owns challenges. I wanted to make sure to find the perfect time for my wedding and I found the best tips and guide on this website: http://www.floridaweddingdestination.com/
    There is all you need to know if you are planning to get married on the Treasure Coast!

  2. avatar Friday Fresh Squeeze #133 | Floridian Weddings reply

    […] I would agree to wearing a pre-selected bridesmaid dress again if these gorgeous gold and white numbers were chosen! Just […]

  3. avatar Erica reply

    The post came out beautifully. Natalie was the epitome of what a southern bride represents and we adore her. Thanks for the feature, ladies!

  4. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    What a gorgeous wedding and wedding party! Love the mothers’ dresses too!

  5. avatar Sarah reply

    I knew that planning a wedding was a lot of work, but I never thought about the little details that make a big difference. I mean, for example portable toilets rental is something really important and personally, I had no idea what company to choose. My colleague recommended me Fredoom Waste and the service was just excellent: http://freedomprowasteservices.com/

  6. avatar caitlin reply

    I love the flower girl and ring bearer outfits! I am getting married in Rosemary Beach in May 2017, and would love to know where this bride found those adorable outfits!

  7. avatar FEATURED FRIDAY |Pure7 Beach Weddings reply

    […] we’re sharing with you the Seaside, FL wedding of Natalie and Parker. Southern Weddings featured this Pure7 Wedding being sure to point out just how much of a true southern belle Natalie […]

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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