When your father is a cotton farmer, and your groom works at the farm too, there might not be a more perfect venue than one named Cottontop Plantation! I always love reading about why our sweet couples choose their venues, and Rebecca and Russell’s story is so fun. Their venue isn’t the only element of their wedding where meaningful details reigned–can y’all believe that Rebecca’s stunning gown is actually a family heirloom? It was worn by her paternal grandmother in 1958, and then by her aunt 1983. Not only is the dress in beautiful shape for an heirloom, it is also completely timeless and so very chic!
Big hugs to Britt Croft for sharing their lovely day with us!
P.S. I must say, I feel a bit akin to Rebecca, as my own dear husband tends to rock a beard as well!
My wedding dress is a family heirloom. My paternal grandmother wore the dress in 1958, and then my aunt wore it in 1983. The dress was handmade by a friend of the family who worked for a tailor in Columbia, South Carolina. I tried on many dresses, but could never find the vintage lace I was looking for. I asked my Mimi if I could try on her dress, and with tears in her eyes, she said she’d love that. Well, I fell in love with her dress! It was just what I wanted, and it was in really good shape for being that old. I had a friend of mine who does embroidery work sew three patches with all of our initials and wedding dates on them and my mom sewed them into the inside of the skirt.
Describe your wedding flowers. I carried a large bouquet of eucalyptus, dusty miller, brasilia berries, peach astilbe, peach roses, and white hydrangeas. I had the florist make two huge arrangements of the same flowers that were placed in white urns and displayed at the base of the porch steps where the ceremony took place. The farm tables we ate at were draped with a garland made of the same combination of flowers, plus silver candelabras and hurricane globes. The aisle was strewn with ivory rose petals.
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? The name of the venue was Cottontop Plantation. It is out in the middle of the country, just seven miles from our house. My dad is a cotton farmer, and Russell works at the farm as well, so besides the venue being very convenient and beautiful, my family and I loved the name Cottontop.
We had two pastors perform our ceremony–one is a family friend we’ve known since I was a little girl, who wrote our introductory thoughts and vows. Our current pastor at our church performed the exchange of rings and the vows. He put a personal touch on it, which made us and our guests more relaxed.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? The venue was at a cotton plantation and we used farm tables at the reception. We buried a bottle of bourbon exactly one month before the wedding to keep the rain away and it worked. It’s Southern tradition! I wore pearls as my jewelry and we served sweet tea and lemonade. I had bridal portraits taken at Boone Hall Plantation. We served our guests mac and cheese, chicken, green beans, potatoes, yeast rolls, and salad–a menu you could find on any Southern dining room table on any given Sunday at a family lunch.
My wedding cake was a two-tiered textured white buttercream cake. The tiers were tall and embellished with real roses. We kept it on display near our dinner tables on an old circular oak table with claw feet, draped with my aunt’s lace wedding veil–the same aunt who had worn my wedding dress before me.
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Russell and I met back in high school when we were both new students. We had several of the same classes, even though Russell was two years older than me. He was the quarterback of the school’s football team and I was a cheerleader. We dated several years in high school and into college when I got the bug to date other people for a while. I dated several other people, only to realize how much Russell and I were meant for each other. During that time (three years), Russell never dated anyone–he never gave up on me.
Tell us all about the proposal! On April 10, I arrived home from work to find a beautiful Rent the Runway gown hanging up next to some shoes and jewelry. Beside it was a note saying, “1. Put the dress on 2. Fix your hair and makeup 3. Be ready at 7 PM. Ignore the cameras and don’t ask any questions.” My sisters and mom were there to help me get ready. At 7, my sister blindfolded me and drove me up to what was to be mine and Russell’s future home. When I got out of the car, she took off the blindfold and I stood there speechless. There was a gazebo strung with lights, a table for dinner, and candles. I was told to sit down at the table to read a note from Russell, and when I looked up, I saw him walking toward me with three roses. He said, “This first rose is for our past, second for our present and the third for our future. He then got down on his knee and proposed. After that, we sat down for dinner just as the sun was setting, and after dinner, we danced under the lights. It was like something out of a fairy tale! Here is the proposal video my sister, Roxanne (a photographer) made.
When did y’all get married? September 27, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 100
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. We used a string quartet on the porch of the plantation. I didn’t think of using anything but timeless classical music, which sounds so beautiful on strings.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? The most memorable moment that I will cherish forever was wearing my grandmothers wedding dress. All the months planning and leading up to the wedding, my grandmother was so proud that I chose to wear her dress.
Photographer: Britt Croft Photography / Videographer: Roxanne Photography / Venue: Cottontop Plantation / Florist: Dyson Designs / Wedding Cake: Teresa Reed / Caterer: Sweet Magnolia’s Catering / Rentals: Simply Elegant Party and Event Rentals and Celebrations / DJ: Bob Bonnett / Invitations: Alicia’s Gifts and Invites / Bride’s Veil: Vera Wang for Davids Bridal / Bride’s Brooch: Tiger Lilly / Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Jenny Yoo / Menswear: Greg Norman