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It’s Derby Week, ladies + gents! We thought we’d celebrate this most Southern event in true Southern style, and have a whole slew of posts centered around all things Derby to prep you for Saturday’s main event. So put on your fanciest hat, sit back, and enjoy the ride!

Up first? A pair of inspiration boards. This first one is inspired by traditional Derby elements — read on for ways to incorporate them into your wedding!

Credits, clockwise from top left:

Gents, of course, should wear their finest bow tie to the festivities. We love this one, shot by Chase Kuhn. See more from this wedding on SW here + here!

Petite Lady apples give a lovely nod to equine inspiration without going overboard. Serve them as part of your dessert bar, or as a sweet counterpoint to cocktail hour (via Martha Stewart Weddings).

Creamy yellow, red, and chocolate blooms are an updated twist on classic red roses.

A red velvet cake? What could be more perfect for a Southern wedding? We love that this one is topped with spring-perfect strawberries (photo by Jessica Johnson).

For true Derby spirit, have a bugler play “Call to the Post” or “My Old Kentucky Home” right before you make your grand entrance into the reception. Todd Pellowe captured a great shot of this in action at one of his recent weddings!

The tan, black, and white look on this groom is perfect for a sophisticated day with a bit of a masculine bent. Gorgeous horse optional! (Photo by Jose Villa)

To keep things from getting overly-theme-y, keep your decor neutral. We like these jute and twine wrapped bottles, decked out with single stems (via Martha Stewart Weddings).

Lastly, passed mint juleps will give any celebration a distinct Southern flair. If you can’t swing classic julep cups for every guest, splurge on a few vintage silver trays — they’ll dress up plain glasses in a jiffy. Old trays can easily be found at flea markets and on eBay, and don’t worry about a little tarnish — it only ups your authenticity! (via Southern Accents)

Other ideas? Host your reception at Keeneland’s race track. Settle centerpieces in vintage silver trophy cups. Make escort cards out of mini prize ribbons. Pin a vintage horseshoe brooch onto your bouquet. Have a bourbon tasting bar (like Calder Clark did so beautifully at one of her recent weddings!). Send guests home with mini derby pies as favors.

We’ll be back soon with another Derby-inspired inspiration board, this one a bit more whimsical!

emily Written with love by Emily
  1. avatar Weekly Round-Up « Southern Weddings Magazine reply

    […] favorite Derby-inspired things, from mint juleps to roses. A brief rundown: Emily dreamed up one traditional Derby inspiration board, and one more whimsical. The whimsical board seemed to be the favorite with y’all :) Save […]

  2. avatar Winner :: Marley Lilly + Spark Letterpress « Southern Weddings Magazine reply

    […] y’all see our Derby Week posts last week? (Here, here, here, here, here, and here, in case you missed ‘em!) I hope you all took our friendly […]

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