With the help of gorgeous blooms (like those amazing Juliet rose garlands!) from Thistle Floral Design, Hannah and her mama took the completely blank canvas of The Filter Building and created a beautiful reception. They collected vintage milk glass for unique centerpieces, added glittering gold details, and even tossed in a few tiny nods to Hannah and Eric’s Parisian proposal. (It involves the famous “Love Lock” bridge and her family — you won’t want to miss it!) While their decor may be “fancy,” they decided to just go with the good stuff when it came to their dinner: fried chicken, pot roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese, biscuits, and cornbread, oh my! I’m sure guests left with a full heart and a full belly!
Thanks to Ben Q Photography for sharing Hannah and Eric’s wedding day with us!
Last June, my mom and I were visiting my sister in Paris, France. My dad flew in for the last week that we were there, and on his first day, we went to do a little sightseeing. On our way to lunch, we were walking past the famous “Love Lock” bridge where couples put padlocks with their names written on them on the railing and throw the keys into the Seine. While my family wrote their names on their padlocks, I saw Eric standing on the other side of the bridge (looking dapper as ever, I might add!). I walked over to him, and he immediately got down on one knee, said some wonderful things, and asked me to be his wife. Not only was this the best surprise (EVER!), but we also got to spend the next week exploring Paris together to kick off our engagement!
When searching for my gown, the stylist pulled a Watters gown that fit most of my criteria–it was a simple, strapless, taffeta gown with a sweetheart neckline and hidden pockets. I added a pearl and lace belt and faux buttons all the way down the back of the dress. By the end of it, I had combined all of the elements from the photos I’d collected to create a dress that was unique and perfect for me!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My mom monogrammed our wedding date in blue onto a piece of Eric’s late grandmother’s wedding dress, and then sewed it into the hem of my wedding gown (old, borrowed, and blue!). She also his late grandfather’s wedding tux to make Eric a handkerchief. My something new was my Christian Louboutin wedding shoes!
I walked down the aisle to the Bridal Chorus and we walked out to Mendelssohn’s “Wedding March.” They fit perfectly with the venue and gave us the perfect traditional church wedding that we were going for. For our first dance, we danced to a cover of Queen’s “You’re My Best Friend” by The Once. Eric loves classic rock and I’m more of an acoustic-and-coffee-house type of person, so this song was perfect for us.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Our first look was our most memorable moment. At that point, our adrenaline had kicked into full gear and the excited nerves had set in! It was so nice to be able to just get away from everything and see each other before the biggest moment of our lives. We both agree that we had never felt happier than at that very moment. It was something we will never forget.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We saved money by not hiring a wedding planner. I did all of the searching, planning, budgeting, and timelines on my own. My mom is an incredibly creative person, so she was my partner-in-crime as far as the decorations and centerpieces went. Between us and her best friend, who was our day-of coordinator, we had every minute and detail planned! We also saved money by doing all of the set-up, decorating, and clean-up by ourselves.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? Each centerpiece at the reception was made up of different clusters of vintage milk glass that my mom and I found during the months leading up to the wedding. Another Southern aspect of our wedding was the food. We opted out of having “fancy” food and decided to just go with the good stuff–fried chicken, pot roast, mashed potatoes and gravy, macaroni and cheese, biscuits, and cornbread!
Rather than doing one large wedding cake, we had five different cakes displayed on a wooden farm table. The cakes each incorporated different aspects of the details of our reception–a hand-painted Rifle Paper Co.-inspired design, gold lettering, lace and satin covered buttons, and milk glass hobnob, all topped with fresh flowers. They were each on top of pastel cake stands and were surrounded by glass milk vases and bowls filled with hand-painted macarons, a nod to our French engagement.
Don’t miss Hannah and Eric’s wedding film by Turquoise Video Productions below!
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met at a fraternity party during our sophomore year at the University of Arkansas. During our junior year, we randomly ran into each other in New Orleans when Arkansas was playing in the Sugar Bowl. We spent the night hopping between different places on Bourbon Street, and the rest is history!
When did y’all get married? February 21, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 200
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We wanted a traditional church wedding, so we chose Perkins Chapel on the SMU campus for our ceremony. We fell in love with the pretty pews, hardwood floors, shutters, and white and gold detailing of the chapel. We also loved the fact that they have an in-house organist! For our reception venue, we chose the Filter Building on White Rock Lake. I loved the overall feel of the building–the exposed brick, the steel beams, and the cafe lights strung outside on the lakeside patio. The best thing about the venue was that it was a completely blank canvas!
Did you pull any wedding inspiration from memories you have together? Tell us about it! Since Paris will now always have a special place in our hearts, we wanted to include a few tiny Parisian details in the reception, like the macarons on the cake table. We also found an Eiffel Tower ring holder that we used to take photos of our wedding bands on.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t strive for perfection. There is so much unnecessary pressure placed on your wedding day–to be in perfect shape, to find the perfect dress and tux, to have the perfect venue, and have every tiny detail of the day be absolutely PERFECT. Well, it’s not going to be! Things are going to go wrong, but those things end up being the fun details of your wedding story. Embrace the obstacles that come up along the way, because at the end of the day, you get to spend the rest of your lives together, and that is the best part.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? Since the wedding, I have joined Eric in Philadelphia. We miss our families, Texas, and all things Southern in general, but we are loving this phase of our life as newlyweds in the Northeast!
Photographer: Ben Q Photography / Videographer: Turquoise Video Productions / Ceremony Venue: Perkins Chapel / Reception Venue: The Filter Building / Florist: Thistle Floral Design / Cake Baker: Layered Bake Shop / Caterer: Celebration Restaurant / Rentals: Posh Couture Rentals / Lighting: Absolute Entertainment / Band: The Dan Quinn Band / Paper Products: Paper Source / Bride’s Gown: Watters / Bride’s Accessories: Stardust Celebrations / Hair and Makeup: Tracy Melton Artistry / Bride’s Shoes: Christian Louboutin / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Mori Lee / Groom’s Attire: Hugo Boss / Groomsmen Attire: Calvin Klein