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One of the sweetest parts of planning a wedding is the opportunity to show your guests what you and your beau hold most dear in your life together. For Nicole and Martin, those things are their Christian faith and their Southern roots, so their Atlanta wedding day was filled to the brim with prayer, meaningful moments, gestures of hospitality, and their favorite Southern delicacies! Their families also played a huge role in making their celebration so special–their grandfathers officiated the ceremony together, and Nicole and Martin were especially excited to display family wedding photos at their reception “to honor the long line of loving marriages that have been examples for our own marriage.”

Thank you so much to Danielle Nichol for sharing this lovely day with us!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Prayer was incorporated at different moments throughout our entire wedding day. Each of those precious moments will forever hold a special place in my heart. Before my mother helped me into my dress, she held my hands and poured out her heart to God over me and my marriage. Each of our grandfathers prayed over us during the ceremony. In the car riding to the reception, Martin prayed over our new marriage–that it would glorify God and be led by Him. And before the night of dancing began at the reception, my father prayed the most meaningful of blessings over us. These prayers were a testament to the love and support of our family, and we hope to create as powerful a Christian legacy as they have.

A few weeks after our engagement, my parents drove to Atlanta for a weekend of wedding planning. My parents and I started the dress hunt at White Magnolia in Buckhead, which I’m so thankful my mother-in-law had suggested. It was the perfect dress shopping experience! The girls were very attentive and listened to what I envisioned on my wedding day. It was a blast! While browsing around the store, I noticed a dress on display in the window and immediately told my mother “It’s the perfect dress!” I quickly peeked at the dress price and my heart fell–it was over the budget. When I walked into the dressing room later, I noticed the “perfect” dress hanging in the room, and was told by the girl that my dad had requested it to be pulled regardless of price. Needless to say, as soon as I put the dress on, it resulted in a few happy tears–including my father’s!

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We did, and it was the best decision that we made regarding the wedding! It was both Martin’s and my most memorable moment of the day. It not only allowed us to enjoy that special moment alone, but it also calmed our nerves before the ceremony. Being able to take pictures beforehand and having more time to spend with guests at the reception were a huge plus as well!

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Martin’s grandfather, who is an Episcopal priest, as well as my grandfather, who is a Baptist minister, were able to conduct the ceremony together! It was such a sweet memory having both of our grandfathers pour out their love for Jesus over us and our marriage. We wanted the ceremony to feel like a worship service, and for all of our guests to witness our love for Christ and our desire for Him to lead us throughout our lives together.
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We are both very traditional and used the traditional Christian vows! However, no matter how many times we had heard the same words at other weddings or in movies, the moment I put Martin’s ring on his hand and promised him my heart forever was the most emotional and overwhelming moment of the entire wedding. It was a moment that we will cherish forever.

Tim at Petals A Florist was able to translate my every dream for the reception and bring them to life. He named his design concept for our wedding a “beautiful mess.” I wanted to bring the soft and romantic feel of an English garden into the ballroom with asymmetrical styling and flowing greenery. The garland used on the tables, as well as the large mirror that was placed at the entrance of the room, was by far my favorite touch! We chose shades of white and ivory colored flowers with a touch of blush pink in the arrangements. The flowers were a mixture of ranunculus, O’Hara roses, English garden roses, and English stock. Tim was even able to insert a few peonies (my favorite flower) into the bouquets without breaking the budget. The greenery used in the wedding was Southern smilax, which happens to be a vine that my mother and I have used many times to decorate at Christmas!

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Martin and I wanted Southern hospitality and charm to be the main theme of our wedding! Our goal was to have everyone feel welcome, comfortable, and appreciated for supporting us throughout our relationship, and now marriage. Our menu consisted of all Southern foods, including pimento cheese crackers, chicken and waffles, barbecue sandwiches, and a grits bar. Since I’m from Alabama and Martin is from Georgia, he wanted to incorporate local craft beers from each of our home states into the bar menu. The South loves heritage, so we were able to display our parents’ and grandparents’ weddings pictures to honor the long line of loving marriages that have been examples for our own marriage. To cool our guests off during the band’s break, we served King of Pops, which is a local popsicle company here in Georgia. We received many thanks from our guests over this decision. For our send-off, we ran through Auburn shakers…and a few loud Auburn cheers, as well!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. It was fall of my sophomore year at Auburn University (War Eagle!) and my best friend and sorority sister, Mackenzie, invited me over for a party at her apartment. While there, I met this tall, quiet, and extremely handsome guy who happened to be one of her best guy friends. Over the next few months, I saw Martin occasionally, and each time, my attraction grew, as did my quietness. Spring semester came and Martin’s fraternity held a dinner party for my sorority. So convenient! Of course, I saw Martin that night and decided that being shy wasn’t going to show him I was interested–it was time to cue the flirting. By the end of the evening, he had invited me to a date party, and by that Sunday, he had called and asked me to go on our first date that evening! I knew that night when he got out of the car to open my door that I was sold–this was a true Southern gentleman. He took me to eat at a local pizza restaurant where he learned my first quirk, eating pizza with a fork and knife! He stills teases me over that habit. It was the perfect first date, and from there, the rest was history. I was head over heels!
Tell us all about the proposal! From Martin: Since we had talked about marriage, I knew that I wanted to make the proposal as much of a surprise as possible for her. I teamed up with her mom and closest friends in order to get that done. I asked all of them to give “accidental” hints like saying “Oh, we will be in Atlanta that weekend,” even though there was no reason for them to be visiting. She fell for the bait and was sure that she had figured it all out. Nicole had mentioned a few times that she wanted to have her nails done, but I needed to make that happen without raising any flags. Nicole’s parents were in town the weekend prior (we got engaged on a Monday), so she thought there was a chance it was happening that Sunday. Her mom decided that they should go get their nails done, which immediately sent up a red flag in Nicole’s mind. She was noticeably excited and anxious all weekend, and then somewhat let down when her parents “left” that Monday morning. After nailing down all the details, it came down to the big day. I picked Nicole up from her apartment, all the while trying not to look incredibly nervous in front of her. On our way to dinner, I told her I thought I had left one of my golf clubs on the course while playing the day before and that we had to go look for it. It took a little convincing, but eventually, she played along. I carefully “looked” for my missing golf club while Nicole followed along. Once we got to the spot, and I sloppily went through the speech I had been running through my head all day, and asked the woman of my dreams to marry me. She said yes!
When did y’all get married? April 9, 2016
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 180
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? The decisions we have made as a couple throughout our relationship have been based on our faith in Christ. We seek to find His will, and strive to be an example of His unconditional love. With the excitement of the engagement and rush of planning a wedding, we consciously chose to place planning for our future together at the forefront. We attended premarital counseling sessions with our church over our ten-month engagement. We also set aside time together every Tuesday night to read a chapter of Love and Respect by Dr. Emerson Eggerichs, a book we highly recommend to couples!
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I’ve always enjoyed playing around with different styles of handwriting, and my great-grandmother always taught me that a handwritten note held more meaning and sentiment than any other form of communication. I took that advice to heart, and a year ago, decided to start Vine & Olive Design, a calligraphy design company. With our wedding, I had the opportunity to not only complete all the calligraphy for the wedding invitations and other details, but I was also able to design our own save the date, invitation suite, and monogram! It was great experience and marketing for Vine & Olive, and it cut a large amount of cost for our paper products! We also received multiple praises from guests on the sentimentality of the personal touches.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We just purchased a home here in Atlanta and love being able to finally live together with our adorable golden retriever, Palmer. It’s a wonderful feeling waking up next to your husband every morning, and not having to leave at the end of the night! With life beginning to settle down after the wedding excitement, we now have time to decorate the house! We’re looking forward to starting the next phase in life as “newlyweds” while enjoying time with each other and friends, and supporting each other as we work towards our dreams. I’ve decided that life is definitely more fun when you’re married to your best friend!

Photographer: Danielle Nichol Photography | Videographer: Ryan Lindsey with Imagine Video Productions | Ceremony Venue: All Saints’ Episcopal Church | Reception Venue: Piedmont Driving Club | Florist: Petals A Florist | Lighting: Up Lighting America | Band: Tayo Reed Band | Paper Products and Calligraphy: Vine & Olive Design | Bride’s Gown: “Ginny” by Modern Trousseau | Bride’s Earrings and Bracelet: J. Crew | Hair and Makeup: Courtney Clifton | Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Azazie in Mint Chiffon | Groom’s Attire: Brooks Brothers | Groomsmen Attire: Men’s Wearhouse

lisa Written with love by Lisa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Uplighting Rental reply

    Absolutely love the photos, great job!

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When it comes to weddings, and many other things for that matter, I’m a firm believer that simple is often best. A few carefully chosen, purposeful, beautiful details that can stand on their own without being cluttered by too much “stuff” can have such an impact, and more importantly, this approach leaves guests the mental space to focus on you and your new husband, rather than be distracted as they try to take in countless activities and displays. Lauren and Jeremiah are a perfect example of this lovely restraint–they selected a naturally beautiful venue, accented it with a few meaningful touches (the lily of the valley bouquet Jeremiah had sent to Lauren’s bridal suite, and the strawberry shortcake they cut into that nodded to Lauren’s childhood tradition, to name a few), and focused on enjoying their day with their many out-of-town guests. I can only imagine what beautiful memories they have of the time they got to spend with the ones they love on their wedding day!

Thank you so much to our Blue Ribbon Vendor Perry Vaile for sharing this day with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I was looking for a combination of delicate, classic, bohemian, and breezy. The designer Rosa Clara really unified these aspirations and included the subtlest hint of sexy. Miraculously, during a weekend off, there was a Rosa Clara trunk show in Raleigh! I was completely enamored with the second dress I tried on. My mother and sisters live in Michigan, so we had to resort to FaceTime for their approval–which was unanimous.

We chose to do a first look because we wanted to maximize our time spent with out-of-town guests. Many of our family and friends traveled from the Northeast and Midwest to North Carolina to celebrate our wedding. It was the perfect choice for us–I do not believe I could have waited until the evening to kiss him!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We had both our ceremony and reception at the spectacular Merrimon-Wynne house. It was important to us to provide our guests with an easy experience, due to the fact that many had traveled to share the weekend with us. I looked at a number of places and none could compare with the elegance and glamour of Merrimon-Wynne. The clincher was the insanely gorgeous bridal suites (yes, there are two!), where we primped and preened all morning.

There was beautiful sunny and breezy weather throughout our wedding day, until the moment I walked down the aisle. When our reverend began speaking, the skies opened up and poured rain! The wedding party scurried inside and we completed the marriage ceremony in a cozy, ornate hallway, surrounded by our loved ones who were spilling into rooms and peering around staircases. The intimacy of the ceremony reinforced that marriage is ultimately about love and family.

Describe your wedding flowers. We chose a miscellany of shades of green and white. The flowers were free-flowing and loose, with ample herbs incorporated. My mother and I purchased a variety of mercury glass vessels and used them to make the centerpieces. Jeremiah has a green thumb and filled the vases with potted sage and lavender. He also gifted a lily of the valley (my childhood favorite flower) bouquet to the bridal suite, which perfectly matched our color scheme.

Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. Jeremiah’s siblings are incredibly talented musicians and vocalists, and they kindly performed a song by Kishi Bashi called “Q&A” during our ceremony. The song reads like poetry and lent itself well to an acoustic performance. Our first dance was to “Falling Slowly” by Glen Hansard, performed by the Vitamin String Quartet. The movie “Once” was the first movie for which I stayed awake for the entirety of the film, so it had some playful meaning, and Jeremiah thought the tempo lent itself well to a foxtrot.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We first crossed paths during my Tufts Medical School years while Jeremiah was completing his residency program in Otolaryngology. There was a definite attraction, but we were very work-oriented during those years! Our romance (inconveniently) began when I moved to North Carolina to start my own surgical training. After one whirlwind and surreal travel weekend, we both knew there was something special between us that was worth the effort and occasional pain of long distance.
Tell us all about the proposal! Jeremiah and I had a standing Friday night champagne date to treat ourselves after travel. The evening started like most others–he had to work late, so I fell asleep on his couch. We were casually enjoying our bubbles on the couch when he completely surprised me by bending down on one knee and promising to make my smile his lifelong goal. After I tearfully and happily agreed, he whisked me off to a romantic French dinner in Cambridge, followed by a romantic getaway weekend at a cabin in Maine. The weekend was complete with skis, lobsters, and rare sunny Maine snow!
When did y’all get married? May 9, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 125
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did not write our own vows, but we crafted our entire ceremony with Reverend Renteria. It was an enjoyable experience to pick and choose the different aspects of the ceremony together. Our mutual favorite phrase was a playful and all-encompassing quote from George Bernard Shaw: “You are my inspiration and my folly. You are my light across the sea, my million nameless joys, and my day’s wage. You are my divinity, my madness, my selfishness, my transfiguration and purification. You are my rapscallion fellow vagabond, my tempter and star.”
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. My family has a long-standing tradition of enjoying strawberry shortcakes on summer evenings, and since strawberries are in season in May, we opted for strawberry shortcakes with lemon cream and thyme. To simplify our lives, Posh Nosh Catering created the dessert as well as our dinner.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Time! I did a lot of wedding planning in the early morning hours between consults and responded to emails between surgical cases. It was a nightmare to schedule my dress fittings during regular work hours!
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Try to make the experience as playful as possible, because it can easily become very stressful. I accomplished this by convincing my fiancé to walk in the woods or head to a brewery so we could discuss wedding details.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? I need to finish my residency and Jeremiah is starting a new job, then we can finally embark on a more “normal” life together. We are running a marathon and share a mutual enjoyment of hiking and adventuring.

Photographer: Perry Vaile / Venue and Planning: The Merrimon-Wynne House / Florist: Watered Garden / Caterer and Dessert Baker: Posh Nosh Catering / Rentals: Party Reflections / Band: The Reckless Brothers / Bride’s Gown: “Ubeda” by Rosa Clara / Bridal Salon: Traditions by Anna / Hair Stylist: Parlor Dry Bar / Makeup Artist: Thuy Larker / Bride’s Shoes: “Landmark Metallic Strappy Heel” by Badgley Mischka / Groom’s Attire: Banana Republic / Officiant: Reverend Robin Renteria

Perry Vaile is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Julie reply

    Hi! Your wedding pictures are gorgeous! My daughter purchased the same dress and is getting married in June! I am a seamstress and trying to figure out how to bustle it. Can you send me a picture of the back bustled up.? I see it from the side and it looks beautiful! Thanks!!! Julie

  2. avatar scott reply

    What a lovely spot to get married, Under the tree out the back! Nice photography too.

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When your groom’s aunt and uncle offer their beautiful lakeside estate to you for your wedding, the question of where to tie the knot quickly becomes a no-brainer–at least, it was for Mallory and Alex! They added one more meaningful layer of family history to this special place, and in turn, it gave them a handful of their favorite wedding day moments and memories (be sure to read about Mallory’s favorite detail below). With the details in the capable hands of planner Nicole King and florist Petal and Pine, Mallory and Alex were free to turn their attention to what mattered most to them: preparing for marriage. Y’all know how much we applaud them for that!

Thanks so much to Lynnesy Catron for sharing this gorgeous day with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I wanted something simple, elegant, timeless, and feminine, but not over the top. My two sisters, my mom, a close friend, and my future mother-in-law went wedding dress shopping with me in Louisville. We started out at Rebecca’s Bridal Boutique and I tried on about 7-10 dresses. There was one dress there that stood out to me–it was unlike anything I had seen before. I felt comfortable in it, and I felt like “me.” I didn’t really say anything because I felt like it was too early to commit. After trying on about six more dresses at another boutique, I kept going back to the other one in my mind. I rushed back to the first store to try the dress on again, and as soon as I had it on, I knew it was the one.

We went back and forth, but eventually decided that we would prefer to see each other before the wedding. As everyone warns you, the day is fleeting, and we knew that after the ceremony, things would go even more quickly and we would have lots of people to visit with. We did a first look not only to help save time with pictures and ease some nerves, but we also wanted to make sure we had a special moment for just the two of us.

How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Our marriage was always more important to us than our actual wedding–I feel like this mindset allowed both of us to be laid back during the planning process. We just wanted to have a fun night of celebrating with friends and family. Our church is very important to us, so we also met with our pastor to ensure that we were spiritually ready for marriage.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? No, we did not write our own vows. Our pastor, Jeremy Linneman, help us select the vows for our special day and also put together a homily that we absolutely loved.

Our venue was very special to us. Greystone Estate is the home of Alex’s aunt and uncle. It is breathtaking from every angle, and was a no-brainer when it was offered to us. Alex’s brother and sister-in-law were married there and Alex’s dad was remarried there.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Greystone Estate sits on the Ohio River, and at sunset, the Louisville Belle came by and blew its horn in celebration. Everyone ran out from under the tent to wave as it went by–it was a detail of the night that we had not planned, but loved so much.

We love the city of Louisville, especially Alex, who grew up here, so we had Derby glasses from all different years that served as the water glass during dinner. They were later packaged up and left on the guest’s tables for them to take home as favors. They added such a great pop of color and a great vintage feel to the wedding. During cocktail hour, we served mini hot browns. For dinner, we didn’t want anything fancy–just a good meal that all would enjoy. We served fried chicken, brisket, biscuits, mac and cheese, green beans, and garlic mashed potatoes. We also made sure a variety of bourbons were served at the wedding.

We found a wonderful lady who makes cakes out of her home. Our cake was three tiers–the largest was a white cake and the top two layers were strawberry with buttercream frosting. We also had an assortment of cookies made by Alex’s mom and a dear friend of the family. As a surprise, Alex’s brother and sister-in-law had Tasty Tuxedo Treats come to the wedding–they showed up on a motorcycle in tuxedos with three different types of ice cream sandwiches.

Our first dance was to “That’s My Kind of Woman” by George Strait. Alex loves George Strait, and it is actually one of the first concerts that we ever went to together. I told him we were dancing to something else and then surprised him with this song. He loved it!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We went to the University of Kentucky together and had many mutual friends, but never met each other while we were in college. I stayed in Lexington to teach after graduation and Alex moved back to his hometown of Louisville to work for Hilliard Lyons. During Labor Day weekend of 2010, I went to visit some friends of mine who lived in Louisville. We went to the Kentucky vs. Louisville game, where I met Alex, and we were pretty much inseparable for the rest of the holiday weekend. Alex traveled to Lexington that same week to take me out on our first official date.
Tell us all about the proposal! During the 2013-2014 school year, I was working on my National Board Certification for Teaching. I was submitting all of my assignments, and to celebrate, Alex had made reservations at our favorite restaurant in Louisville, Jack Fry’s. When Alex came to my house to pick me up for our dinner celebration, he proposed! Not only was I surprised with the proposal, it also turned out that we were not going to Jack Fry’s after all. Instead, Alex had invited my family to town, and both of our families were waiting to celebrate with us over dinner and drinks at The Louisville Boat Club. After dinner, we continued the celebration with a group of our closest friends.
When did y’all get married? June 20, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? About 230
Describe your wedding flowers. Our wedding flowers were perfect and exactly what I had envisioned. We went with soft sage-y creams, ivory, and touches of blue, and our florist used open garden roses, peonies, hydrangeas, forget me nots, and berries. I wanted the arrangements to be loose, but not too wild, and I loved the idea of having lots of greenery everywhere. We had beautiful garlands on the head table, and the centerpieces were a mix of milk glass bud bases, vintage wooden candle holders with candles, and wooden boxes.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The weather definitely threw us for a loop. We knew that having both the ceremony and reception outside was risky, but didn’t truly feel the pressures of that until the weeks leading up to the day. The remnants of a hurricane left us with a wedding day forecast of 100% chance of rain with strong winds. God was truly with us on our day–it was a gloomy morning with rain, but then around 2:00, the clouds began to clear and the rest of the afternoon and evening was absolutely perfect.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We both just truly enjoy being with one another, so we are looking forward to the memories we will make now that we are married. We both love kids and would love to have a family of our own someday, but for now, we have a beagle puppy that consumes a lot of our time and love.

Photographer: Lynnesy Catron / Planner: Nicole King / Venue: Greystone Estate / Florist: Petal and Pine / Cake Baker: Melanie Gunn / Caterer: Masterson’s / Rentals: The Rental Depot / Band: 64 West / Paper Products: Minted / Bride’s Gown: “Farah” by Watters / Hair Stylist: Whitney Kessinger of Hali B. Salon / Makeup Artist: Sloane Winters of Circe / Bride’s Shoes: Nina / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “D660” in Midnight by Alfred Sung / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Twirl Boutique / Menswear: Joseph A. Bank / Table Numbers: The Paper Exchange

lisa Written with love by Lisa
  1. avatar Dana reply

    love the look of the wedding party! her dress and flowers are also so pretty!

  2. avatar Wedding: Mallory & Alex » Lynnesy Catron Photography reply

    […] I don’t think I’ve ever photographed at a more beautiful venue, especially here in Louisville.  Check out more of Mallory and Alex’s gorgeous day over at Southern Weddings. […]

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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