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During a beach-side bike ride on one of my and Brandon’s first vacations together, we explored the construction site that is now Alys Beach. We were even able to walk through the half-built homes as they were being constructed, and now, every time I see a wedding there, it brings back such sweet memories of our dating life. With their favorite wedding detail being their venue, and Emily and Reed’s plans to vacation there each year for their anniversary, I’m positive those future trips will be filled with joyous memories of their beautiful wedding on the Central Park Green! Playing off the modern white architecture, Emily and Reed worked with Lauren Chitwood Events to bring in rustic driftwood and succulents combined with lush peonies and protea. That gorgeous custom driftwood arch had guests talking for months!

Thank you kindly to Amy Campbell for sharing Emily and Reed’s wedding with us!

I found my dress in Nashville at B. Hughes. I had previously looked in Birmingham, where my sister lives, and liked a few dresses, but knew I couldn’t make any decisions until I visited this shop. I tried on a strapless Reem Acra dress and knew it was the one for me. I felt so pretty in it and didn’t want to take it off. I still love it a year later!

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We didn’t write our own vows, but did speak to our officiant about the flow and words we wanted him to use during the ceremony. The vows were very simple, but those words are so meaningful. While saying my vows to Reed, I started crying. I’m not a big crier, so I started laughing at myself for crying. It was a sweet moment we’ll both remember forever.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? My best friend, Maggie, read Colossians 3:12-14. This was a verse Reed and I kept reading during our premarital exercises. I love the words in this verse and thought it would be special for her to read it.

I grew up going to the beach near Sandestin and Seaside, Florida. Every wedding I’d seen along Highway 30A was so beautiful, and we loved the idea of getting married at the beach. We looked at multiple venues in Rosemary Beach and Alys Beach, and the Central Park Green at Alys Beach was the exact look I wanted. The small green is surrounded by trees and a breathtaking modern pool and restaurant. It turned out to be a perfect venue and I couldn’t have been happier!

Describe your wedding flowers. Lauren and I discussed many different looks, but we ultimately decided to mix the rustic look of driftwood and succulents with peonies and protea. She sent me examples of what she thought I would like, and after seeing a photo that included a gorgeous driftwood arch, I couldn’t stop thinking about it. Lauren and her florist created one for our wedding and it was the most beautiful arch I’ve ever seen. It was so memorable–people talked about it months after the wedding.

What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We saved money by trimming down the guest list. Initially, we wanted around 300 guests, but after talking with our planner, Lauren, we decided to invite 170. It was hard to exclude some people but in the end it felt intimate and was a great size for the venue.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We both went to college at Ole Miss. I always knew who he was and had a crush on him, so a mutual friend introduced us after I told him I thought Reed was cute. For a few months after meeting, we would see each other around Oxford and always seemed to get into long conversations. He finally asked me out on a date, and we dated for five years before getting married.
Tell us all about the proposal! Reed and I went to my parents’ house in Mississippi for Thanksgiving. We all decided to cook outside because the weather was so nice. Reed had planned everything with my family beforehand, and to give him time to propose, they all snuck back into the house. Due to lack of sleep from working the night before, I didn’t even notice their attempts to leave us alone. While we were outside talking, my sisters and my mom attached the ring to our dog, Daisy, and then let her back outside. Daisy immediately ran up to us, sat down, and I noticed the ring tied around her neck with a bow. Reed got down on one knee and asked me to marry him. We spent the night celebrating with my family and calling friends to tell them the news.
When did y’all get married? June 13, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 170
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our favorite detail of our wedding was the venue. After getting married there, we now want to go back to Alys Beach every year! It’s the most beautiful place I’ve been in the United States.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? My husband and I are both from Mississippi and he is a passionate Ole Miss football fan. One of my favorite memories of the night was when Reed took the mic onstage, spouted Ole Miss football statistics, and led our mostly Mississippi reception in the Hotty Toddy cheer.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Our wedding officiant, Gary Wingo, introduced us to a premarital workbook, “Before You Say I Do.” This helped us prepare for marriage and discuss things we otherwise may not have discussed. As a result, we grew closer and learned how to handle certain situations should they arise.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Originally, Reed and I were going to marry on May 16, 2015. After we set the date, we had trouble finding vendors who were available that day. After a few minor meltdowns, we decided to change our wedding date to June 13. I’m so happy we did, because everything worked out perfectly.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? The most memorable moment for me was seeing Reed for the first time. Having my dad walk me down the aisle to my husband was such a great feeling. When I finally saw Reed and he had a big smile on his face, it was the exact moment I’d pictured for my entire life. The ceremony was definitely my favorite part of the whole wedding day.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We are enjoying life in Nashville as a family of three (we have a French bulldog named Willis). I have so much fun with Reed, even when we’re doing simple, daily activities. I hope we continue having fun together, and maybe one day add to our little family.

Photographer: Amy Campbell | Planner and Florist: Lauren Chitwood | Venue: Central Park Green in Alys Beach | Wedding Cake: KaraBoo Bakery | Caterer: Townsend Catering | Band: The Heather Hayes Experience | Paper Products: Dement Printing and Fresh Ink | Bride’s Gown: Reem Acra | Hair and Makeup Stylist: Ana Crane | Bride’s Shoes: “Fearne” by Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale | Menswear: Men’s Wearhouse

marissa Written with love by Marissa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Macey reply

    Everything looks like a dream! Beautiful.

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Even before Christy had a boyfriend, she remembers telling her mama that she would someday be married at Reynolds Plantation…and a little ways down the road, she and Jake made that dream come true! Inspired by the beautiful landscape of Christy’s family’s summer home, Christy and Jake chose to say the vows they wrote to one another right in front of the lake before adjourning to Sandy Creek Barn for the celebration. Not even temperatures in the triple digits could keep the newlyweds and their dearest family and friends from enjoying a gorgeous tented dinner and the wild dance party that followed!

Thank you so much to the talented Melissa Schollaert for sending this dreamy day our way!

I knew from the very first moment of the process that I wasn’t going to try on more than 20 dresses–I knew I would find one that day. My mother, my oldest sister, and my two very best friends went shopping with me in New Jersey. After the first bridal shop, where I almost bought the third dress I tried on, we went to Elizabeth Johns in Morristown, New Jersey. I tried on a few dresses that I had my heart set on prior to visiting the store through online research, but ultimately decided upon a beautiful blush, all-lace Romona Keveza gown. I had it in my head that I would never have a strapless dress, nor did I ever want a blush dress, but this one felt right and made me feel beautiful!

How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? We worked together on all aspects of the wedding. There was not one detail I didn’t run by Jake–he knew it all and definitely had more of an opinion than most grooms. I knew that working together and getting through any differences during the wedding planning process would help us grow as a couple.

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? Yes, we did! I wanted to see Jake beforehand and have a special moment together before the excitement of the day really started happening. We met down by the water of our venue and had a few nervous giggles together. We also took a moment during the sunset and stepped away from the reception to just be with one another and reflect on the day.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We wrote our own vows! Our ceremony was very much about us and our love for one another. Our vows were reflective of us a couple–there were a lot of laughs, tears, and reflections.

My parents built a summer home on Reynolds Plantation while I was in college. Ever since my first visit, I told my mom (even before I had a boyfriend) that it was where I wanted to get married. It was beautiful, peaceful, and my dream come true! The Ritz Carlton Lodge on Reynolds Plantation had various beautiful venues we could chose from, but we ultimately chose Sandy Creek Barn. The Barn is located across the lake from the hotel and has the most beautiful landscape with acres of fields and trees. We could party into the morning without disturbing anyone for miles! We had our ceremony down by the water, our cocktail hour inside the barn, and our reception took place in a beautifully decorated sailcloth tent adjacent to the barn.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our wedding was hot as all get out! Everyone knew they were in the South with those temperatures! We also incorporated a lot of Southern touches with antlers and music. My husband was reluctant at first, but we had some great country music playing at our wedding!

One of my absolute favorite details of my wedding was the flowers. I was blown away by my florist, Kent Duffy of Designs by Kent. I am not tied to any particular flower, but only knew I wanted something that felt light, rustic, and classic. Our farmhouse tables were a mix of round, square, and long, and we decorated them with antlers, succulents, touches of gold, and metallic. I was not tied to any color, but it all just blended in beautifully with the landscape of the barn. He went above and beyond my expectations.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We had cake and an array of desserts. The more the merrier was our attitude! I am a chocolate girl and Jake loves fruity desserts, so we decided to have both! Our actual wedding cake was a naked cake, which was designed by the pastry chef at the Ritz Carlton. It was exactly what I had envisioned.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met at a Halloween party in 2010! He was a farmer and I was dressed as what was supposed to be a hippie. We both had B- costumes and laughed it off. What started as innocent conversation that night led to a first date over wine and mussels at the Mermaid Inn in NYC. We knew from that first date we were meant to be! We go back every year to order the same thing and sit in the same seats.
Tell us all about the proposal! Jake’s sister, Amy, is an incredibly talented singer/songwriter and was performing at Rockwood Music Hall in the Lower East Side. It was a Saturday night and we had plans to go to the show, and then afterwards, we would head to “a nice dinner” (as Jake put it when I asked what to wear) with his family. Jake was extremely nervous in the car ride to the show and was latching on to his sunglass case for dear life (turns out, the ring was hiding in there the whole time!). After we arrived to a full crowd, Amy did a few songs, and toward the end, she did a cover of Ray Lamontagne’s “Hold You in My Arms.” In the middle of the performance, she invited Jake up to the stage, where he made the cutest speech (that I am not sure I would have remembered given my emotional state if it wasn’t recorded), and then proceeded to propose. While all of this was happening, our family and friends–unbeknownst to me–were watching it all through a projector from the other room. After being surprised by them all, we headed to a a party Jake had put together with all of my closest friends and family!
When did y’all get married? July 18, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? Roughly 200
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. We covered all the bases with music–pop, country, hip hop, and typical wedding songs! I walked down the aisle to a “500 Miles” cover by Sleeping at Last, and for our first dance, Jake’s sister did a beautiful cover of “Dream a Little Dream of Me.” We strayed from typical wedding songs during our procession and ceremony, and wanted it to be fun and light to reflect our personalities.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I can’t name a favorite detail, but one thing that turned into being the most memorable was how HOT it was. It was about 100 degrees at 5:30 P.M.–the start of our wedding. I was a nervous wreck! We extended our cocktail hour to cool people off inside the barn and I had extra fans and generators brought in for the tent. The fans ended up being “misting fans” and the dance floor at night turned into a slew of people who were soaking wet from the mist, but dancing their hearts out! It was absolutely hilarious and one of my favorite memories.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? When we took a moment to ourselves down by the water while the sun was setting and the reception was in full swing. Our closest friends and family had just been a part of the best day of our lives, and we were officially husband and wife. It was such a special moment that we will never forget.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We have a 10-month-old puppy who is our best buddy! He makes us a family of three and we are hoping to become a family of four in the next few years! We are looking forward to traveling, spending more time with our family and closest friends, and supporting each other as we progress in our careers.

Photographer: Melissa Schollaert | Videographer: Anchor Heart Films | Planner: Ashley Scott of The Ritz Carlton | Venue: Sandy Creek Barn at Reynolds Plantation | Florist: Designs by Kent | Caterer, Cake and Dessert Baker: The Ritz Carlton Lodge, Lake Oconee | Band: Band of Gold | Paper Products: Sideshow Press | Wooden Signs: Country Bliss Designs | Bride’s Gown: Romona Keveza | Hair Stylist: Kathryn Yearwood, Zapien’s Salon | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: J. Crew | Groom’s Attire: Tom Ford

lisa Written with love by Lisa
2 Comments
  1. avatar Paperlust Wedding Invites reply

    Absolutely love those letterpress wedding invitations, what GSM are they?

  2. avatar Kale Inspired Wedding Colors Ideas for 2017 Spring & Summer | Stylish Wedd Blog reply

    […] Credits: via The Brides Cafe/via Southern Weddings/via Glamour/via Urban Style […]

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While details and decor can help set the tone for your wedding day, nothing quite compares to the venue. There is not just the location to consider, but amenities, occupancy, and so much more. Like my husband and I when we were wedding planning, Catye and Trey found choosing the right fit for their reception to be a bit of a challenge. However, after just seeing renderings of The Carriage House, they knew it was the place for them to celebrate their marriage! I think they were absolutely right in their choice–the lovely Carriage House was the perfect backdrop for a romantic celebration filled with friends, family, and absolutely beautiful blooms from Without Wax, Katy.

Thanks to Mustard Seed Photography for sharing this sweet day with us!

I always envisioned myself in something more form-fitting and lace, but, to my surprise, I ended up with a Jim Hjelm dress that was somewhat voluminous and not at all what I had expected. The second I stepped into it, I knew it was the dress for me. I just felt like such a bride and could not imagine walking down the aisle in anything else. I also had a Watters dress for the reception. I had seen the Watters Santina dress all over Pinterest and was dreaming about it, but wasn’t quite sure if it was right for my wedding. When I was trying on dresses at Town and Country in New Orleans, I saw that they had the Watters gown and I just had to try it on! The second it was on my body, I knew that I had to fit it somewhere into my big day, so I decided to wear it to the reception as a lighter and more flowy option. It ended up being so comfortable to dance in and a perfect fit for our wedding day.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did not write our own vows, but chose to keep with the traditional vows. We chose instead to include our personal touch with the songs we chose and readings we had.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. The worship band from our church, which is made up of a bunch of our friends, played the music at our ceremony and it was absolutely beautiful! The song that they played as I walked down the aisle, “Beloved” by Tenth Avenue North, actually brought me to tears. Such a beautiful song that was made even more lovely by their talented voices.

The main reading of our wedding was an excerpt from Donald Miller’s book “Blue Like Jazz.” It read, “I will give you this, my love, and I will not bargain or barter any longer. I will love you, as sure as He has loved me. I will discover what I can discover and though you remain a mystery, save God’s own knowledge, what I disclose of you I will keep in the warmest chamber of my heart, the very chamber where God has stowed Himself in me. And I will do this to my death, and to death it may bring me. I will love you like God, because of God, mighted by the power of God. I will stop expecting your love, demanding your love, trading for your love, gaming for your love. I will simply love. I am giving myself to you, and tomorrow I will do it again. I suppose the clock itself will wear thin its time before I am ended at this altar of dying and dying again. God risked Himself on me. I will risk myself on you. And together, we will learn to love, and perhaps then, and only then, understand this gravity that drew Him, unto us.”

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We chose the ceremony venue (The Woodlands United Methodist Church) because we belong to a Methodist church in the area; however, we currently have services out of an elementary school. By using another local Methodist church, we were able to have our church pastor marry us. When it came to the venue, we had a very difficult time finding the right one. I went into the process knowing I wanted something a little more rustic, but nothing I found seemed to be the right fit. After what seemed like months of looking (but was probably only a week or two), I stumbled across The Carriage House. It was not even open yet, but the renderings made it look absolutely beautiful. The second I saw it, I could envision exactly what our wedding would look like. It definitely felt right.

We chose to go with farmhouse tables at our reception, and combined with the cross back chairs and beautiful floral arrangements, they brought out the beautiful Southern charm of our farmhouse venue. We also served hibiscus lemonade and tea at our cocktail hour, which ended up being the perfect refreshments for a hot August day in Texas.

What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? Allie Ruth of Allie Ruth Designs. We originally hired her just to do our invitations (which were absolutely stunning!), but she ended up designing many of the elements that became an integral part of our wedding, including napkins and signs. One of my favorite elements of the wedding that Allie helped with was the design of the menus. Our planner found some beautiful dip-dyed blush napkins and then Allie designed a menu stamp that we were able to actually stamp directly onto the napkins. All of Allie’s design pulled our wedding together beautifully and made everything feel cohesive.

The dessert table was everything I could have imagined and more! I was so lucky that Jennifer (my wedding planner) pointed me in the direction of Kristina Guilbeau of Buttercup Bakery. She designs and makes the most gorgeous cakes. We ended up going with three smaller cakes instead of one large wedding cake. Our main cake ended up being a banana cake with peanut butter mousse and a cinnamon cream cheese frosting. So delicious! On the two smaller cakes, we went with one traditional white cake with fruit and then a chocolate cake with espresso mousse. We figured that with all the options, everyone would be happy! In addition to the cakes, we decided to give our guests a variety of pies to choose from. Kristina made us a beautiful spread of mini pies in an assortment of flavors. I honestly believe that the pies were Trey’s absolute favorite part of the evening. The dessert table in general was one of the most beautiful elements of the wedding.

How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Trey and I planned for our marriage in multiple ways. First, we went through premarital counseling with the pastor of our church, covering a variety of tough topics that he believed were important to discuss before marriage. We also chose to work our way through a marriage book before the wedding. This book helped us to talk about a variety of topics that we had never talked about before and start thinking more about what married life would look like for us.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Trey and I met at a CrossFit gym called CrossFit Town Center. I had been going to the gym for a few months when in walked this handsome man. I was immediately drawn to his smile and sense of humor. I knew he was the one for me! After a few months of hanging out as friends, Trey finally worked up the courage to ask me out on a date (while we were running a cool down lap at the gym, no less). The rest is history!
Tell us all about the proposal! Two weeks before the proposal, Trey suggested that we go out to dinner at our favorite restaurant for a fun night out. Trey seemed a little off throughout dinner, but I didn’t think anything of it. After dinner, he told me that we needed to stop at our CrossFit gym to lock up. When we walked into the gym, I saw that candles were lit and there were roses everywhere. There was also a slideshow playing of all of our memories together. I couldn’t tell you what was said, but I know it was a magical moment. After the proposal, we headed to a nearby bar and I was shocked to see all of our closest friends and family gathered to celebrate. It was truly a beautiful evening!
When did y’all get married? August 1, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 280
Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We chose not to do a first look. Both of us had always imagined that the first time we saw each other would be the second the church doors opened. We were very happy with our decision to keep with tradition in this regard.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? More than $100,000
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? It is easy to say this now, but truly don’t sweat the small stuff, and always stay focused on the end goal: to marry the love of your life. I have seen so many brides get caught up in trivial things and it ends up putting a strain on their relationship. Focus on the end goal and everything else seems to pale in comparison.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We already took the next big step of buying a house together, and now, we are looking forward to our one-year anniversary that we are going to be spending together in Germany, Switzerland, and Austria. All three of these places are places we have never been, so we are excited to travel and experience them together.

Photographer: Mustard Seed Photography | Videographer: 31 Films | Planner: Jennifer Laura Design | Ceremony Venue: The Woodlands United Methodist Church | Reception Venue: The Carriage House | Florist: Without Wax Katy | Cake and Dessert Baker: Buttercup Bakery | Caterer: Rosemary’s Catering | Rentals: POSH Couture Rentals | Band: Royal Dukes Band | Paper Products: Allie Ruth Design | Bride’s Gowns: Jim Hjelm and “Santina” by Watters | Bride’s Hair Accessories: Twigs and Honey | Hair Stylist: Salon Bugatti | Makeup Artist: Jennifer Aronson Makeup | Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Annabelle” by Jenny Yoo | Menswear: Jos A. Bank and The Tie Bar

marissa Written with love by Marissa
3 Comments
  1. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    So sweet and charming! Love the bridesmaid dresses!

  2. avatar Southern Peach Summer Wedding Palette | Hey Wedding Lady reply

    […] Photo by Mustard Seed Photography, Floral Design by Without Wax Katy, Bridesmaid Dresses by Jenny Yoo via Southern Weddings […]

  3. avatar Amanda Purvis reply

    I can’t seem to find a website for Allie Ruth Designs or any contact information for her. Can you share more details?

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