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Small towns and the South go together like biscuits and honey–they each seem to bring out the best in one another, don’t you think? Since Abigail and Adam’s love story began in their neighboring North Carolina mountain towns, there was no place like home for their rustic fall wedding. With limited venue options in her small hometown, Abigail and her family set out to help restore an abandoned produce packing warehouse. Not only did it become the perfect industrial space for her and Adam to celebrate with all their loved ones, it also now serves as an event space for the whole community. What an incredible legacy to leave!

Thank you so much to Michelle Lyerly for sharing this special day with us!

My mother, mother-in-law, and sisters came to Charlotte to help me find a dress. When I walked out in the dress I eventually bought, no one said a thing until we heard my best friend, who we called over Facetime, quietly say, “Oh, Abby!” We collectively started crying at that point and got right to work on the alterations.

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? It was important to us both that the moment when I started walking toward him to become his wife happened in front of all of our friends and family, who had and would continue to support us as a couple.

Adam and I grew up in neighboring small towns in the mountains of North Carolina. Our love story started there and so much of who we are and what we love came from growing up together in that part of the state. We knew we wanted to be surrounded by the love of our hometowns on our wedding day. We also knew that many of our friends from college and work wanted to experience our small town firsthand!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Choosing a venue that wasn’t actually a venue yet! Murphy, North Carolina is a small place, so the choices for an event are limited. We ended up taking a risk and choosing an abandoned produce packaging warehouse in the center of town, built around 1911, as the venue. The exposed white brick courtyard sold me on the place! Our families worked with the owner of the building to clean, renovate, and re-purpose the building for the reception within six months. It was a challenge to bring the building up to code and make it suitable for not just a party, but a wedding reception, within such a short time frame! It ended up being stunning. The building now serves as an event venue, and it’s wonderful to see the community using the facility!

We kept the flowers to a minimum. The church and reception venue were styled using collected antique silver pieces, handmade antler flower crowns, hundreds of candles, a custom lighted marquee, collected oushak rugs, and white and green pumpkins from a local farm. Baby’s breath, white and pink roses, and greenery covered the tables and bars. Original iron window frames from the building were covered in fresh magnolia branches and suspended from the ceiling.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? The whole town got involved! People stopped by on a regular basis to check in on the status of the reception venue’s restoration. Our families pitched in and built the tables (out of wooden beams recovered from the venue) and bars (collected wooden shipping pallets). When word got out that my sister was collecting antique silver pieces for the wedding, people started showing up at our house with pieces they found at yard sales or from their own personal collections. My uncle hand-stitched over 500 feet of white flag pennants for the courtyard, and my sister made amazing antler flower crowns. We even had people stop by the reception and join in on the fun. It was truly a hometown wedding!

The wedding cake was a three-tiered lemon pound cake with buttercream icing. We also had a dessert bar of cakes lovingly made by family friends. There wasn’t a single slice left at the end of the day!

What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? A local bluegrass band from the John C. Campbell Folk School. They played on the outdoor stage during the reception’s cocktail hour, greeting everyone with soulful Appalachian music. The outdoor stage was decorated with antique oushak rugs, an antique iron candelabra, and cascading pumpkins from a nearby farm. It was magical and felt just like home.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We were so young! We first met with a group of friends outside the two-screen cinema in Adam’s hometown of Andrews, North Carolina. As is the case with most 13-year-olds, we weren’t so much dating as just seeing each other at group events or ball games. Adam went to my eighth grade dance with me, and from that point on, we’ve grown up together. So many times, young love is seen as irrational or unwise, and while it is certainly unpredictable, it’s amazing when it works out. I’m so thankful to know that Adam understands every part of me: my past, my present, and my future.
Tell us all about the proposal! I was in the middle of studying for spring exams when Adam showed up with an Easter basket. Easter is my favorite holiday, so I thought he was just making a sweet gesture. Each egg in the basket held gift certificates for my favorite things, but one light blue egg held the best gift: my engagement ring! Adam and I had dated for so long, I wasn’t sure if he would be able to surprise me when the time came, but this took my breath away. It was simple, creative, and thoughtful. I couldn’t have asked for anything better.
When did y’all get married? October 25, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 300
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? Our families are very close, so the passage from Ruth 1 was meaningful and true.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I have so many! To name a few, a very good friend of mine gave me a watercolor she painted of our dog, Franklin, and his new last name as an engagement present. We had the image printed on the cake napkins, which was a wonderful way for Franklin to be a part of the celebration. We still use the leftover napkins for our bar cart at home! We also loved our dance floor. An old circular plant holder was used to suspend a disco ball, wrapped with a garland of greenery, over the black and white dance floor, and the stage was back lit by a custom designed marquee that said A+A. It set the tone for the party! Finally, a 1971 Minnie Winnebago, renovated by my father, served mini corndogs (my favorite), Coca-Cola bottles, and homemade potato chips as the night concluded.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? We met with my former youth pastor and the minister for the wedding, Danny Byers, for premarital counseling. No matter how well you know a person, it’s so important to make sure your goals, values, and thoughts on faith work well together.
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? We used a lot of florals and greenery that we could collect ourselves: magnolia leaves, dried hydrangeas, and baby’s breath. We also worked with many local vendors, which cut down on shipping and transportation costs. My sisters really went above and beyond to make every detail special, so we were able to work without an event planner and just hired a day-of coordinator.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Your wedding needs to be true to who you are as a couple. The small details that represent you and your life together will make all the difference. I would also add, don’t take yourself or your wedding too seriously. The details I loved the most were the ones that made me laugh, like the deer with the bow tie that hung in the restroom, or the ones that created a buzz–when the trucker hats hit the dance floor, people let loose!

Photographer: Michelle Lyerly / Videographer: Brian Johnson / Planner: Brittney Forrister / Ceremony Venue: Murphy First Baptist / Reception Venue: The Hackney Warehouse / Florist: Occasions Florist / Cake Baker: Tara Dockery / Caterer: Herb’s Pit Bar-B-Que / Rentals: Elegance / Band: The Root Doctors / Matchbooks and Drink Stirrers: For Your Party / Koozies: Custom Ink / Invitation Suite: Reaves Engraving / Bride’s Gown: Tara Keely / Bridal Salon and Hair Accessories: Hayden Olivia / Hair and Makeup: Salon El Khouri / Bride’s Shoes: Christian Louboutin / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Donna Morgan / Suits: Michael Kors / Bow Ties: Brackish Bow Ties / Groom’s Shoes: Cole Haan / Dance Floor Props: Oriental Trading / Dance Floor Lights: Flashing Blinky Lights / Tambourines and Hats: Custom Ink / Watercolor Artist: Sara Bozarth / Special Details: Kendall Simmons

lisa Written with love by Lisa
2 Comments
  1. avatar Meg Gravley reply

    Really huge fan of a dessert bar made by family and friends – so personal and functional. The triangular banners sewn by her grandpa…icing on the cake!

  2. avatar Dana reply

    the dress, the bunting flags, the dog napkins–what is not to love about this wedding?!

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I have a soft spot for Texas weddings, and when the bride and groom are fellow University of Texas alumni, I can’t resist calling dibs on writing their wedding post! Brianna and Jim met at the Forty Acres, and after years of long-distance, they chose two very special venues in Brianna’s hometown for their winter wedding. Their celebration was classic, lovely, stylish (especially Brianna’s “Carrie Bradshaw-esque” dress!), and Southern–the focus on hospitality was undeniable, and I guarantee you that every SW gal is currently wishing we could’ve helped ourselves to their biscuit bar!

Thank you so much to Elisabeth Carol for sharing Brianna and Jim’s lovely day with us!

I borrowed my Granny Pehl’s wedding ring, just as my cousins before me have. I wore it on my right hand, and it was so special to have a piece of family history so close to me on the big day. My something old was my mother’s ring bearer pillow with a piece of my Meme’s lace sewn onto it. My something blue was my new monogram that we tied on my bouquet. I love how it pops in pictures, and it was fun getting to incorporate my new monogram into the wedding! My new was a pair of gold Manolo Blahnik pumps. To go with my Carrie Bradshaw-esque dress, I needed some dream shoes. I was under budget with my dress, so I was able to splurge on these beauties!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. Two weekends after the engagement, my mom, sister, and I headed to San Antonio to shop! I was about to start nursing school and wasn’t sure how much time I was going to have to get wedding items taken care of. I had always wanted to be married in Vera Wang and knew that her White collection at David’s Bridal was going to help make that dream a reality. I tried on almost all of her gowns, and when I put the last one on, I just knew this was the dress that I was going to marry Jim in. The dress was a little classic, a little couture, and a little Carrie Bradshaw.

One of my fondest childhood memories is being a train bearer in my cousin’s wedding, waiting in the entry with her before she walked down the aisle. She was nervous and excited, and there was an energy in the room that I will never forget. I knew that I wanted that moment with Jim. I wanted to see him for the first time when the church doors opened.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: There are so many! We enjoyed every moment and detail of our day. I will say that the “The Washecheks” sign that hung above the sweetheart table made my heart skip a beat every time that I looked at it. It was such a sweet reminder of the new family that Jim and I were starting, and my new last name!

When I first met with my florist, I told her that I wanted Southern elegance with a feel of the Texas Hill Country, and I think that she nailed it. We went with classic white blooms, greenery, and mixed metals, from mercury glass to julep cups. There were three different centerpieces for the guest tables and a gorgeous garland swag that framed the sweetheart table. For the bouquets, I knew that I wanted something timeless, and Sprout gave me just that. She mixed white ranunculus, peonies, and roses with small punctuations of greens. It was heavenly!

Jim and I chose to dance to “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz. Throughout our relationship, this song would play on the radio in times that we needed a small reminder about our love and commitment, and it highlights the ideals that Jim and I have for our marriage. That night, the lyrics served as a promise to one another that no matter what, we won’t give up on each other–our marriage will be for a lifetime.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Jim and I stressed the importance of Southern hospitality. My parents were amazing hosts and welcomed all of our friends and out-of-town guests with open arms, driving them around to see the sights, setting up tours of local attractions, and making dinner recommendations. We incorporated Southern spirits (Southern Comfort and Maker’s Mark bourbon) and used mint julep cups for florals and bar accoutrement. We served shrimp and grits, fried quail and waffles, and a biscuit bar, among other Southern favorites, and we highlighted the importance of family tradition. Jim and I are both lucky to come from a background of strong, lifelong marriages, so we displayed pictures from our parents and grandparents’ weddings, along with the date that they were married. 2014 was a special year, with my parents married 30 years and my grandparents 60 years, so it was important for us to celebrate that!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Jim and I met my first week of college at The University of Texas at Austin when he was a senior and I was a freshman. I saw him from across the room talking to a mutual friend and knew that I had to meet him! The friend introduced us and we spent the night sitting on a couch in the middle of the room, dressed in neon rave gear, talking about everything under the sun. Jim moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area after he graduated and we began our four-year long distance relationship. Let’s just say, we know all of the best stops between Austin and Dallas! (We recommend the Czech Stop for kolaches during any road trip!)
Tell us all about the proposal! It was Easter weekend during my senior year at UT. Jim had explained that he couldn’t come to Fredericksburg (my hometown) for Easter and that he had a special gift for me instead. That Friday, my brother, mom, and I drove out to our family ranch to get extra chairs and tables for Easter. I saw my sister as we drove up to the ranch and was immediately confused that she was home from college and didn’t go home first! I walked inside and found a beautiful Easter basket and flowers with a card that read “Bri.” I immediately thought, “Oh! He sent a gift with Baleigh!” I opened the card and found out that my real surprise was waiting outside. As I walked down the steps, Jim walked up the hill toward me. Shocked, I froze, while Jim walked up, got on one knee, and asked me to be his wife! I had to ask him afterwards what he said exactly, because I was shocked, crying, and overwhelmed with joy.
When did y’all get married? December 13, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 150
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? Jim and I were married in the church that I have attended my entire life. I was baptized there, went to school there, performed almost every part in the Christmas pageant (from baby Jesus to Mary) there, and attended Sunday mass regularly with my family. The reception was held at the Nimitz Naval History Museum. This museum meant the world to my late grandfather, Ollie, a former Navy sailor. He was on the board that commissioned the museum, was present at the opening ceremony, and is now honored on a plaque inside. Being from a small town, every place holds a memory and strong meaning. I love that I was able to honor my family and our history in the town of Fredericksburg during our wedding.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Jim and I were married in the Catholic Church, although Jim is not a Catholic. Throughout the process of preparing to be married in the Church, we had many opportunities to talk about our ideals, dreams, and hopes for our marriage. Our favorite prep activity was an engagement retreat that we went on. We spent the weekend focusing on laying the foundation for our marriage and making our relationship stronger. We left the weekend feeling strong in our relationship and confident in starting our marriage.
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? We decided early on that the cakes that I dreamed of were not in our budget. Our baker actually made our wedding cakes out of styrofoam for display, and then had cut sheet cakes in every flavor that were served as we “cut” the cake! It was the perfect way to cut cost!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Jim, Praline, and I are currently living in Fort Worth! We just moved into a new house, I just started a job as a neonatal intensive care nurse, and Jim is a senior engineer at a power marketing firm. We are looking forward to our life settling down, having visits from our family and friends, and going on frequent movie dates at our favorite theater!

Photographer: Elisabeth Carol Photography / Videographer: Southern Charm Films / Ceremony Venue: St. Mary’s Catholic Church / Reception Venue: The Nimitz / Florist: Sprout Floral and Event Design / Cake Baker: Sophie’s Choice Bakery / Caterer: Cartewheels Catering / Rentals: Hill Country Event Rentals / DJ: Altared Weddings / Die-Cut Details: NarWall / Invitations: Veronica Foley / Envelope Calligraphy: Design Roots / Detail Calligraphy: Charlie Whiskey / Napkins and Stir Sticks: For Your Party / Bride’s Gown: White by Vera Wang / Bridal Salon and Veil: David’s Bridal / Hair Stylist: Jamie Laratta / Makeup Artist: Ginny Smith / Bride’s Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale in Mallard / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Bella Bridesmaids Dallas / Bridesmaid Earrings: “Carmella Stud” in Pearl by Kendra Scott / Menswear: Black by Vera Wang / Coordinator: Jasper Eisenberg

Elisabeth Carol is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Dana reply

    that biscuit bar is a dream!

  2. avatar Michael and Carina reply

    This wedding is just so awesome in so many ways! Love these, and those biscuits look divine!

  3. avatar Wedding Biscuit Bar + Favorite Biscuit Recipe reply

    […] Images via Southern Weddings: Texas Wedding with a Biscuit Bar […]

  4. avatar His and Hers Wedding Chair Details | Tasteful Tatters reply

    […] source                                                               source […]

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As promised, I’m back with more paper goodness!

Our next stop was at the For Your Party booth. FYP is a great friend of Southern Weddings (we used their goodies in this shoot, among others!), and it was so fun to meet the people behind the scenes! Tip: Follow them on Twitter – they’ll often tweet 15% off discount codes!

East of India was displaying some fun typographic posters, which I thought would be neat either displayed at the reception or as a keepsake post-wedding.

Dauphine Press was by far one of our favorite booths – everything was so light and pretty and elegant! The paper cakes made out of their patterned paper were gorgeous, too.

This fun cocktail party invitation caught my eye at the Two Paper Dolls booth. I love the casualness of the fill-in style – wouldn’t it be perfect for an engagement party, or maybe a Jack and Jill shower?

This snappy gingham porker from William Arthur would be great for a casual BBQ rehearsal dinner.

The individual cupcake carriers from B.T. Elements were one of my favorite new products at the show. They came in such cute designs, and would be perfect for holding a favor at a bridal shower or bridesmaids’ luncheon! B.T.E. was sharing lots of other cute packaging, as well, including those bright candy or popcorn holders.

A huge thank you to Cyn Kain for snapping all of these images for me! I’ll be back with more soon!

NSS 2012 Part 1

Cyn Kain is a fabulous member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

emily Written with love by Emily
3 Comments
  1. avatar Janna reply

    Love! I’m always looking for and sending sweet paper goodies to my friends and family! What person doesn’t love a snail mail happy showing up in their mailbox?! Such wonderful paper products- would love to attend that!

    • avatar Emily reply

      I couldn’t agree more, Janna! I’m a big fan of snail mail :)

  2. avatar Noted Wedding Touches « The High Life Suite | Fashion. Food. Love. reply

    […] cupcakes? Have a carrier from them to take their cupcakes home. (Picture: Southern Weddings […]

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