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I’ll be honest, when I learn that a couple meets at a philanthropic event for children, I’m going to have high hopes that their wedding is sweeter than sugar. Allison and Patrick did not disappoint! With the help of their planner, Molly McKinley, these two University of Florida alum (I see that chop, y’all!) planned a traditional wedding with plenty of heart. Allison and Patrick realized that this may be the only day where every person they love was in one room, so they wanted to take advantage of the chance to make each and every guest feel loved and important. They even took the time to write a personalized note to each of their guests, filled with words of love, gratitude, and memories, that was incorporated into their place settings. Such a kind gesture that I’m sure guests were touched by!

Big SW hugs to Morning Light by Michelle Landreau for sharing this lovely day with us!

Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My something old was gold and pearl drop earrings that once belonging to my Italian great-grandmother, Nonni Catherine. Our something new was a set of beautiful coupe toasting glasses given as a gift to us from our wedding planner. We borrowed the cake cutter Patrick’s parents had used at their wedding. My something blue was a sorority tradition, a knotted turquoise ribbon, sewn into my dress.

There were many aspects of our wedding that we wanted to remain very traditional with, including not having a first look. We both wanted the traditional moment of seeing each other for the first time during our ceremony. It was even more special to us because all our friends and family were able to be a part of that moment too.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We used traditional vows, but our ceremony was very personalized because it was officiated by a college friend, Joe, who was in seminary school at the time. He also happens to be married to the mutual friend who first introduced Patrick and I. Joe added many personal touches (we made vows both to God and each other) and tailored the sermon to our favorite Bible verses (Romans 12). He also read Louis Evan’s wedding prayer–a personal favorite of mine–which includes beautiful advice for a Christian marriage, such as, “May they never take each other’s love for granted, but always experience that breathless wonder that exclaims: Out of all this world, you have chosen me!”

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: It was really important to us that every single one of our guests knew how much it meant to have them celebrating with us on our wedding day. We realized that our wedding day may be the only day in our lives where every person we love was in one room. We spent the weeks leading up to the wedding writing personalized notes to each of our guests containing words of love, gratitude, and memories. Those notes were then placed in hand-calligraphed envelopes and incorporated into each of the guests’ place settings.

Our wedding cake was composed of alternating tiers of almond cake with raspberry filling and cinnamon cake with cream cheese filling. It was covered in fresh flowers and rough buttercream frosting. We also had wedding favors of raspberry and coconut French macarons. While the only bite of cake we ate was during the cake cutting, we arrived home from our honeymoon to a freezer full of macarons and were eating them for months!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Patrick and I met through Dance Marathon at the University of Florida, a philanthropy benefiting Children’s Miracle Network.
When did y’all get married? August 15, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 125
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? In my opinion, part of being Southern is an emphasis on food, family, and the Lord. Each was highlighted in some way throughout our wedding day. I’d also have to say the way in which our wedding date was chosen adhered to some strict Southern norms. We only had August or December to choose from because we knew that holding a Saturday evening wedding during football season, would result in some pretty angry (and distracted) friends and family!
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? Instead of having a professional photo booth vendor, we provided polaroid cameras for the guests to take photographs with. Our family and friends had a lot of fun capturing moments throughout the cocktail hour and reception. The photos were either taped into our guest book or taken home by guests as sweet mementos.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? We loved every single vendor who was a part of our wedding, but hiring our wedding planner, Molly McKinley, was the best decision we made. I wrestled back and forth over whether I needed a professional planner for the year leading up to the wedding, but looking back, I literally could not be happier with our decision. I can’t imagine the planning process without Molly. She is an advisor, artist, and friend, all in one. Every other vendor who exceeded our expectations were by her suggestion. She spun my ideas into a reality that was even better than I had imagined.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t get so wrapped up in planning the wedding that you forget to plan for the marriage. The wedding is one day. The marriage lasts all the rest. Surround yourself with people who can not only give you advice and guidance, but also some loving perspective when you need it.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We currently live in Atlanta, Georgia (with our cat Lilly) and are loving newlywed life. Every day is an adventure and we look forward to growing our love for each other for many years to come. We both look forward to all the little things that come with living with your best friend, such as trips to the farmer’s market, lazy Friday nights, and learning more about each other. Marriage is a wonderful gift and we’re thankful to be sharing it with each other.

Photographer: Morning Light by Michelle Landreau | Planner: Molly McKinley | Venue: Foxhall Sporting Club | Florist: Bloomin’ Bouquets | Cake Baker: Confection Perfection | Caterer: Home.Made | Rentals: Unlimited Party and Event Rentals, Event Rentals Unlimited, and Southern Vintage | DJ: Black Tie Events | Paper Products: Plain Jane Designs | Bride’s Gown: Style L318 by Legends by Romona Keveza | Bride’s Veil: The Sentimentalist | Hair and Makeup: Jennifer C Nieman | Bride’s Shoes: Jack Rogers | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Dessy in Topaz | Linens: I Do Linens | Calligraphy: Lydia Whitener

marissa Written with love by Marissa
5 Comments
  1. avatar Elizabeth reply

    Everything about this wedding is elegant, simple, with details in all the right places. Truly swoon-worthy, (& pin worthy!)

  2. avatar Elle reply

    So very soft and beautiful!

  3. avatar Casey reply

    I live in Georgia and I am looking for this exact dress, where did you find a retailer around this area that carried the designer?

    • avatar Marissa reply

      Hi Casey! Romona Keveza Legends (the designer of this gown) is available at two Georgia salons: Bridals by Lori and BlueBell Bridal. I hope you find your dress! xx, MAK

  4. avatar Allison & Patrick: The Wedding at Foxhall Resort – Fine Art Wedding & Portrait Photography Serving Atlanta & Destinations Worldwide reply

    […] thanks to Southern Weddings for sharing this sweet love story on their […]

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It’s no surprise that we love a beau in a bow tie here at Southern Weddings, so when the opportunity to collaborate with our dapper friends at High Cotton on an exclusive bow tie collection presented itself, we couldn’t have been more thrilled! You see, a bow tie line has long been on our wish list, and we simply can’t think of better partners to create it with. After lots of emails and phone calls, plus more fabric swatches than we can count, we are tickled pink to introduce you to the Southern Weddings for High Cotton bow tie collection!

Each of these beautiful bows (most available in neck ties, pocket squares and boy’s bow ties as well!), has its own personality and inspiration behind it that I’m excited to share with you!

While our UNC-loving gals might say this blue and white stripe was inspired by their beloved Heels, the real muse for our “Something Blue” bow was actually a classic Southern Weddings editorial, Something Blue from V3! While it’s perfect for spring weddings, it’s so stinkin’ hot here in the South, your gent can go on wearing it right into early fall!

Of course, no Southern Weddings collection would be complete without chambray, and our friends at High Cotton found a way to improve on our favorite fabric–make it peach, of course! Inspired by our pretty pink cover shoot for V7, A Bushel and a Peck, the sweetly saturated fabric of our “Sweet as a Peach” bow will have you craving a trip to Georgia before it’s even tied.

When you’re creating a fabric inspired by Freshly Squeezed, one of the happiest editorials we’ve ever produced (and one of my personal favorites!), it’s imperative that you go bright! The coral check print of our “Freshly Squeezed” bow tie is a delightfully juicy pattern that will make the perfect addition to your gent’s summer wedding attire!

Boasting the signature Southern Weddings color palette, our custom madras print, “Southern Madras,” is sure to become an instant favorite! We created this colorful design using our own gents as inspiration. We wanted a classic print that reminded us of our homes in the South, our mission, and, of course, our adorable beaus. The perfect pop of color for a classic gray suit or the cherry on top of a fun suspender and slacks combo, you can’t find this custom print anywhere else!

Way back when we started brainstorming about our bow tie collection, we knew we wanted a print inspired by our darling readers! “Champagne Toast” is a gold and white polka dot print that is the only silk tie in the collection, making it extra special, just like each of you. The pretty golden hue makes it formal without being fussy, and the white polka dots make it fun as a sprinkler in summer. Whether you’re planning a formal black tie affair or adding a little glitz to a more casual soiree, your dapper gent can dress this design up or down!

Y’all, aren’t they all so amazing?! We’re so thrilled to be a part of such a wonderful project and we are so grateful to our friends at High Cotton for helping us bring our dream to life!

Now the hard part, picking a favorite–which one is yours?

Photographer: Anna Routh / Venue: The Bradford / Dresses: Donna Morgan /Florals: Simply Elegant Floral Designs / Makeup: Makeup by Ashley Mooney

marissa Written with love by Marissa
5 Comments
  1. avatar Lorin Fairweather reply

    My hubby would love these! Just beautiful, y’all!

  2. avatar Laura reply

    I love them all, but especially the Freshly Squeezed! That color is amazing!

  3. avatar High Cotton reply

    This just made our day! We have loved seeing the Southern Weddings for High Cotton collection come together with your inspiration. We couldn’t ask for better partners!

  4. avatar Madison reply

    My favorite is the “freshly squeezed” bow tie!

  5. avatar Dana reply

    soo adorable!! love them all!

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It’s a good week here at Southern Weddings for my fellow pink and gold glitter-loving gals! After thoroughly gushing over yesterday’s wedding, I considered reigning in my enthusiasm a little for Katey and Matt’s post, but decided against it. If you know me, you know that when I get excited, I talk WAY too fast, so please read this quickly and drink in all the prettiness below!

As a wedding planner herself, Katey had so many creative ideas, but she knew she didn’t want to go overboard. Armed with Kate Spade as her inspiration and the beautiful Sanderling Resort as her backdrop, she created a perfectly preppy celebration! I think she found just the right balance of big and bright (hello ah-mazing paper flowers at the ceremony) and sweet and subtle (that LulaKate bow belt)! It’s also completely romantic that Katey and Matt held their wedding weekend in the same place where she realized he was the one for her–swoon!

I’m so glad Meaghan Elliot was there to capture this wedding!

Tell us all about the proposal! We were with my family in the Bahamas over the holidays. Although it seemed like the perfect time to propose, I had no idea it was coming, as we had briefly talked about getting engaged sometime in 2014 and then getting married in 2015. This vacation was in 2012! My sister and I gifted our parents with professional family photos on the beach as a Christmas present. While the photographer was snapping pictures, I turned around to check out the sunset, and when I turned back around, Matt was on one knee. It was the shock of a lifetime!

Oh, nelly! Wedding dress shopping was so much fun! For the first shopping trip, I brought my mom, sister, best friend, and a few aunts. We had a large group, but it was such a special time to share with some of the most important women in my life. I went back with just two ladies a few weeks later and found my dress! To make it more “me,” I found the perfect bow belt from LulaKate and a veil with three stripes on the bottom, which really helped complete my look and personalize it a bit.

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Yes! I felt as though nothing would take away from that iconic moment when I walked down the aisle with my dad and saw Matt at the end waiting for me–even if we had seen each other before. I loved being able to see him and it helped settle a few nerves. We were able to get some pictures together and with the bridal party, which allowed us to enjoy more time with our guests after the ceremony.

Our bridal party walked down the aisle to “In My Life” by The Beatles, We thought that was a great song to celebrate all of our friendships with our bridal party. We went very traditional for the other songs–I walked down the aisle to “Bridal March,” and “Wedding Chorus” played when we were announced man and wife.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Matt and I were taking pictures on the beach at sunset when we came up over the dune to join everyone else who was already dancing. We stood up on top of the dune for a few minutes and watched our friends and family celebrating our marriage at one of our favorite places. The sun dipped into the bay and we went to join in on the party…we’ll never forget that!

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: It sounds corny, but it was so amazing to have so many of our friends and family not only in the same state, but in the same 400-foot radius. Our loved ones are spread out all over the country and to have them all in the Outer Banks for a few days was so nice. As for the details, we didn’t even plan this, but guys ended up putting their escort card flowers on their shirt or suit pockets, so it was like all the men had boutonnieres. It really added a fun pop of color to the wedding in an unexpected place.

Describe your wedding flowers. Working with Renee Landry was fantastic, and with my ideas and her creative genius, we ended up with three looks for the tables. They were all rectangle or square and were inspired by a bright, colorful, Kate Spade look. We did small bud vases with massive peonies in them for the longer tables, and we sprinkled in garden roses as well. Everything was bright and bold and I loved it! We also spray painted artichokes gold to stick the table numbers in, and they turned out beautifully!

Since my family is from Pittsburgh and we are Italian, we followed a big Italian tradition in Pittsburgh of a cookie bar, where tons of family members bake cookies and serve them at the wedding. Since we had a destination wedding, we knew this wouldn’t exactly be possible. I ended up doing a cookie display with cookies that represented some of our favorite things–our hobbies, dogs, favorite sports teams, and of course, our monogram!

To see more of this gorgeous wedding, take a peek at Katey and Matt’s video by our Blue Ribbon Vendor, Blueberry Creative!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. I lived in DC for awhile working on Capitol Hill, and then headed up to Baltimore to pursue a career in advertising. Mutual Virginia Tech alumni friends brought us together a few times, but it wasn’t until Halloween that we finally met while aboard the Urban Pirate Ship that sails around in the inner harbor in Baltimore (kind of a hilarious place to meet!).
When did y’all get married? June 7, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 225
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? I grew up going to the Outer Banks, and some of my fondest memories have happened there. After about a year of dating, Matt and I and some friends went to OBX in October for a long weekend. It was the first time many of my friends who didn’t live close by were able to meet Matt and hang out with him. Everything went so well (I figured it would, of course!), and it was on that vacation that I realized he was the one for me. How special to go back and marry him there! Guests stayed at The Sanderling, and we celebrated the welcome party, ceremony, reception, and brunch there. We wanted our wedding weekend to be a vacation for everyone.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We had our bridesmaids read our wishes and promises to each other instead of readings. Some were funny and others were more serious–one wished us a lifetime of love, laughter, and strength through life’s ups and downs. In another, I promised not to not force Matt to eat all of the crazy healthy meals I make, like cauliflower pizza!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Being a wedding planner and working in weddings every day, it was hard to “stop.” I wanted to do so many things and had so many ideas/etc, but I didn’t want to go overboard or over budget. There’s just so much inspiration out there and it’s hard to narrow down ideas.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? More than $100,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I had our bridesmaids carry the boxes with the wishes instead of flowers. Since I chose a very expensive flower for the reception, I knew we needed to save somewhere. It was a fun unique twist for bridesmaids, and it saved me from having to buy 12 bridesmaid bouquets! A few of the girls carried huge paper flowers too.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? When you and your fiancé need to do some planning, go to an interesting place, like a park, a bench on the water, a restaurant (with Internet of course), etc. That way, even if you’re talking about less fun topics, it is not as bad if you’re eating a great meal or watching sailboats go by–we did lots of planning on Baltimore’s waterfront! Also, it’s never too soon to start purchasing things for the wedding! After you nail down your color palette and vision for the day, if you see a cocktail napkin design on Etsy you love, order it, even if the wedding is still five months away. Nothing is worse than praying for a shipment to get in on time!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We just can’t wait to see what the future holds for us. We’re in such a great time in our lives–so many of our friends are having babies, buying homes, and creating their lives together. We can’t wait to join in the fun with them!

Photographer: Meaghan Elliott Photography / Videographer: Blueberry Creative / Planner: lemon & lime event design / Day-of Coordinator: Orangerie Events / Venue and Catering: The Sanderling Resort / Florist: Renee Landry Style / Cake Baker: Patti Cakes / Rentals: AFR / Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen / Lighting: Blue Steel Lighting / Band: Burnt Sienna / Paper Products: Fig2 Design Company / Bride’s Gown: “1103” by Blush by Hayley Paige / Bridal Salon: Garnish Boutique / Bride’s Jewelry: Kate Spade / Bride’s Veil: Sara Gabriel / Hair and Makeup: Amie Decker Beauty / Bride’s Shoes: Jack Rogers / Bridesmaid Dresses: LulaKate / Menswear: Perry Ellis / Dog Cookies: Sweet Kiera / Monogram Cookies: Sweet Goosie Girl / Beach/Ski Cookies: Miss Lizzy Cakes / College Cookies: Ruthie’s Cookies / Watercolor Calligraphy: Perch Paper Company / Cheers Signs and Bridesmaids’ Flowers: Lovelyfest Goods / Ceremony Music: Club Violin / Cocktail Hour Music: Hear Steel Drums Play / Escort Card Paper Flowers: Land of Flowers / Monogrammed Bouquet Ribbon: Oatmeal Lace Design / Wedding Signs: Sweet NC Collective / Custom Clutches: Bobbie K Designs / Table Numbers: Better Off Wed / Instagram Clay Vases: Hadley Clay / Koozies: Rouge and Co

Blueberry Creative, Orangerie Events, and the Sanderling Resort are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
12 Comments
  1. avatar Jenn – Wedding Supplies reply

    Amazing details for each any every component of this wedding design – adorable!

  2. avatar Calling Local Mama’s…. | Meaghan Elliott Photography Blog reply

    […] brides (Katey & Matt) weddings (think Kate Spade meets nautical… Outer Banks wedding) is featured on their site today! […]

  3. avatar Hadley reply

    What a beautiful, inspiring wedding! I’m SO thrilled my little instagram bud vase was included! XO

  4. avatar Lisa reply

    What a fun wedding!! Love all the creative ways they used navy and white stripes, and that ceremony space is a show stopper!

  5. avatar Southern Weddings Weekly Round-Up – Southern Weddings Magazine reply

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  9. avatar Excited M-I-L to be reply

    I really must know where the Katey purchased the robes for the bridesmaids in the Kate Spade inspired wedding. Please, can anyone help me find those….??

    • avatar Lisa reply

      They are from Plum Pretty Sugar! Find them here: http://rstyle.me/ad/w7heabfdsf

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