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Our Instagram family continues to grow and grow–over 236,000 friends have spent time with us over the last year. Y’all have swooned over sweet moments and lovely wedding details and laughed along with the behind-the-scenes peeks into life in our office. We don’t use the word family lightly, as we love being able to interact with y’all through the power of social sharing. It’s always fun to see what y’all like the most and which details or moments lead to the most conversation. Here are ten of our most-liked Instagram posts from 2016!

The stunning tented reception space at Emily and Jim’s wedding

Hope and Michael’s darling newlywed home tour with some impressive before-and-after renovation peeks

A breathtaking setting for Erica and John’s wedding ceremony.

Maggie’s magnificent and perfectly pink bouquet

Amanda’s stylish Hayley Paige gown and classic up-do

Brent and Graham’s elegant (and cozy) wedding portrait

This sweet bride’s stunning veil

It is quite possible that this is one of my favorite looks of any #SouthernWeddings editorial. A bold statement, I know. But I’m a classic Southern bride through and through, so when you combine my very favorite style elements (big Southern hair, bows, and pearls!) I’m all in a tizzy! Plus, being married to a born and raised Montgomery boy, I can’t help but love our Montgomery bride just a little extra. Link in profile to see the all our beautiful South city styles. Photo by #BlueRibbonVendor @KatelynJames, hair by @AshandCoBridalHair, makeup by @BellelinaStudio, dress by @MiraZwillinger, bouquet by @StephanieGibbsEvents, jewelry by @Croghans, at @KSHGEvents. – @MarissaKloess P.S. Insta has a zoom now, so you can see how gorgeous this gown is! ?https://southernweddings.com/2016/12/13/favorite-wedding-dresses-southern-brides/

A photo posted by Southern Weddings Magazine (@southernweddings) on

Our Montgomery bride and her perfect bow-backed gown

Peyton and her maids (and their magical winter wedding day style)

kristin Written with love by Kristin
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    My two favorite wedding details are almost always the bride’s dress and her bouquet. In my experience, finding my dress and seeing my bouquet were the two moments when “being a bride” really hit me, and that only made these two details even more special to me in every wedding I see! From those details alone, I’m sure it’s easy to see why we fell head over heels in love with Emily and Jim’s black-tie farm wedding–her Oscar de la Renta gown is so striking, and that bouquet by Victoria Clausen Floral Events is one for the books! That’s not all that captured our hearts about their celebration though–we also loved seeing their joyful ceremony moments, the creative ways they showed hospitality to their guests, and the two incredibly meaningful places where they hosted their loved ones for their big day.

    Thank you so much to Kate Headley for sharing this stunning day with us for V8!

    Tell us about finding your wedding dress. What was your favorite thing about it? I am obsessed with my wedding dress. I tried on many dresses, but could not stop thinking about this dress. I loved the texture of the flowers embroidered on the Chantilly lace, and the seed pearls helped to give it a sweetness and elegance that I had never seen before. The veil was gorgeous – it was embroidered with the same flowers and seed pearls. I did not want to take it off!
    Describe your bridesmaids’ dresses. How did you choose them? When it came to the bridesmaids’ dresses, I was looking for something different…something that did not look like the typical bridesmaid dress. I spotted this Lela Rose dress and immediately knew it would be perfect. The embroidered flowers on the bodice echoed the embroidery on my dress, and complemented the garden feel of the wedding. We chose navy to contrast with the bright flowers, but also at the request of my maid of honor, my sister.

    Tell us all the basics of your wedding! Why did you choose these things? Did any of these details hold special meaning for you as a couple? We were inspired by springtime on my farm – it is incredibly lush and verdant, with flowers blooming everywhere. I wanted our wedding to capture that “English garden” atmosphere. The service was at our church, St. John’s, at 4:30 p.m., and the reception followed at the farm. Due to the size of the church, we had a small ceremony, and then a much larger reception. St. John’s was where I was raised, and also where Jim proposed, so it was really special to share it with our closest family and friends. The farm could not have been more beautiful that day. Having the reception at my family home helped to make the black-tie party that much more warm and joyful. We essentially got the best of both worlds, as we had both an intimate ceremony and a huge party!

    Jim and I loved that, due to the small size of the church, we could see every single face when we looked out over the audience. Even though it was a bit of a blur, you could feel the love and joy emanating from every corner of the church. I barely held it together when walking down the aisle, whereas Jim was calm and beaming. Our officiant could sense my nerves, so during the opening exhortation when Jim and I each took turns responding, “I will,” to her questions, she paused during the question. I jumped the gun and eagerly said, “I will!” before she had even finished asking the question, and Jim and the entire audience erupted into laughter. The gaff helped break the ice and my nerves disappeared. After the ceremony, she admitted that she planned the pause to help me relax, and it definitely worked!

    What was the design inspiration for your wedding? Why was this design special to you as a couple? We were inspired by the natural beauty of my parents’ farm, which has rolling hills and beautiful flowers. I love flowers, so the idea was to create an “English garden” atmosphere that was teeming with blooms and greenery. We used brightly colored flowers and lush greenery, with textured linens and lanterns everywhere. Everything was glowing, from the illuminated trees to the incandescent clear tent. We were also always aware that we were inviting people to my family’s home, so every detail was designed to make the reception welcoming and intimate.

    The reception was a glowing, joyful, and elegant party. It was black-tie, but warm and exuberant, as it was at my family home. The cocktail hour was in the front of the house, and then we invited everyone into the house to pass into the backyard for the reception. To continue the intimate feeling, guests were greeted at their seats by thank you notes from Jim and me. Even though it was a big wedding, it was very important to us that our guests knew that they were the most special part of our celebration.

    The flowers were key to the entire event. I wanted them to be lush, abundant and bright. Each part of the wedding had the most incredible flowers, from the beautiful floral arch at the church, to the flower-covered arbor and escort card display, to the stunning azaleas, roses, hydrangeas and more planted throughout the grounds. Both the wedding flowers and the landscaping came together to create a verdant landscape that looked like something from “A Midsummer Night’s Dream.”

    Tell us about your wedding cake or sweets. The wedding cake and groom’s cake were absolutely delicious – I’m still dreaming of them. The wedding cake was made of layers of coconut and strawberry cake, and was covered in little flowers that matched my wedding dress. The groom’s cake was red velvet and was an architectural feat. In honor of UVA, the cake was designed to look like the famous Rotunda, complete with columns, porticos and a domed roof.

    Our first dance was to “You Send Me” by Sam Cooke. It was one of the first songs Jim had played for me when we first began dating. In the months leading up to the wedding, Jim and I took dance lessons (but I think we canceled more than we attended). Needless to say, we improvised our first dance, rather than sticking to the fancy routine our instructor had attempted to teach us!

    How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. Jim and I met as students at the University of Virginia School of Law. Jim, a third-year at the time, was (and still is) very close to several of my good friends from Princeton. We were introduced during the first week of my first year and began dating shortly thereafter. During our first date, we discovered that my parents and Jim’s father were all members of the class of 1982 at the Law School. They had not kept in touch, but remembered each other very well. The following May was their 30th Reunion – needless to say, their classmates loved the idea that the children of members of the Class of ’82 were now dating.
    Describe the proposal: During the fall of my third year, Jim’s family joined my family for Thanksgiving at my parents’ farm. I knew that Jim had asked my father for my hand, but I had no idea when he would propose. On Thanksgiving Day, after attending the traditional blessing of the hounds, Jim asked if I would go for a drive with him. We drove to my small, country church, where I had always dreamed of getting married. The church is a beautiful 19th century stone church, located right in the middle of horse country. We walked around the gardens until we arrived to the front of the church, where Jim got down on one knee. After I said “yes,” we sat for fifteen minutes in the gardens, taking in what had just happened. We then drove back to my parents’ house (and almost ran out of gas on our way!), and were met by our families and a champagne toast. It could not have been more perfect.
    How did you prepare for marriage while planning your wedding? We met with our officiant, the Reverend Tracy A. Bruce, for marriage counseling sessions during the months preceding the wedding. Tracy is the Rector of St. John’s, our church, and she is absolutely wonderful. Although we were a little apprehensive before beginning, the sessions turned out to be one of my favorite parts of the wedding planning process.
    Three adjectives that describe the day are: Elegant, radiant, and intimate
    How many guests attended your wedding? We had about 120 at the ceremony and 325 at the reception.
    Groom’s favorite detail of the wedding: Everyone involved with planning and putting on the wedding was incredible, which makes it hard to pick out one detail. If I have to choose, whenever I look back at the photographs from the weekend, my eyes stay a little longer on how incredible the church looked and how happy Emily looked during the ceremony.
    What songs did you use for your ceremony? My mother led the charge on the music selection, and her suggestions were thoughtful and created the perfect atmosphere. We had an amazing trumpeter and organist, as well as a soloist who performed throughout the ceremony. The processional was Clarke’s “Trumpet Voluntary in D Major.” We sang one of my favorite hymns, “Joyful, Joyful, We Adore Thee,” and then the soloist sang “The Wedding Song” by Peeters. After the blessing of the marriage, the soloist sang “A Nuptial Blessing” by Joncas as the benediction. We walked out to “Hornpipe” from Handel’s Water Music, followed by his “The Arrival of the Queen of Sheba.”
    Tell us about your grand exit. For the last song of the night, the band invited us on stage to dance and sing “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough.” They then parted the crowd and sent us off into the night, where Jim and I stood and watched our friends dance during the last few bars of the song. We did not do a sparkler sendoff, instead opting to hold an after-party by our pool. We had blankets and Adirondack chairs, fire pits with s’mores ingredients and delicious snacks – mini pizzas, pigs-in-a-blanket, and grilled short rib and cheese sandwiches. It was the perfect way to end the night, and amazingly, no one ended up in the pool!
    What advice would you give to someone currently planning his or her wedding? Find the best, most reliable vendors possible and RELAX. It will be amazing, no matter what happens.
    What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We’re settling into married life in Washington, D.C. and look forward to relaxing after the wedding. We are most excited for the puppy that will be joining us this spring!

    Photographer: Kate Headley | Planner: Pineapple Productions | Designer and Florals: Victoria Clausen Floral Events | Ceremony Venue: St. John’s Church, Western Run Parish | Reception Venue: Private Residence | Caterer: Linwoods | Cake Baker: Sugarbakers | Bride’s Gown and Veil: Oscar de la Renta | Bridal Salon: Saks Fifth Avenue | Bride’s Shoes: Manolo Blahnik | Bridesmaid Dresses: Lela Rose | Hair Stylist: Judy Messina and Dana Smith of Public Image | Makeup Artist: Leah Margosis | Groomsmen Fashion: The Tuxedo House | Save the Dates: Mr. Boddington | Paper Goods: Pleasure of Your Company | Linens: Table Toppers | Tents: Loane Bros., Inc. | Transportation: American Limo | Lighting/Fireworks: Digital Lightning | Calligraphy: Arney Walker Calligraphy

    lisa Written with love by Lisa
    3 Comments
    1. avatar Occasions In Print reply

      Love how the cake matched her dress!!

    2. avatar Brook Paris reply

      That glass tent and gold iron chairs- WOW.

    3. avatar Jay reply

      Such intricate embroidery! The bride’s choice is truly classy.

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    Friends, I am extra excited to share today’s beautiful wedding, because as soon as I saw it for the first time last summer, it made me think, “This is what I want my wedding to be like.” Not because of the details Inslee and Anderson chose, although they incorporated so many lovely and classic touches, but because they look so incredibly joyful in each and every picture! I love that amongst all of the details, from their gorgeous invitation suite to their Southern-inspired cuisine, the happiness they so clearly felt on their special day is what sticks out above everything else. I can only imagine how that pure love and joy must have inspired their guests–it most certainly inspired us!

    Thank you so much to the talented Kate Headley for sharing Inslee and Anderson’s wedding with us in V7!

    I am very hands-on and love doing things myself, so when our stationer assumed they would assemble and stuff our invitations for us (for a fee), I told them they didn’t need to. I brought all the components of the wedding suite home, and my mom, bridesmaids, and I set up an assembly line, donned our surgical gloves, and assembled the invites together. It was such a happy memory, getting to see each friends and family members’ names in gorgeous calligraphy.

    I tried on at least a hundred dresses–I can safely say no other dress could have been better for me, because I’ve tried them all on. I love how my dress was feminine and romantic without being overly sweet. The draping of the horsehair gave it a strong architectural quality.

    What was the design inspiration for your wedding? Why was this design special to you as a couple? I wanted to keep with traditional and formal etiquette for the design and flow of the day. We didn’t want to go over-the-top on anything–we just wanted to celebrate the natural beauty of our venues in the spring and the joy of being with friends and family. We kept the colors soft and natural, with lots of greenery mixed in.

    Bride’s favorite detail of the wedding: Just one?! Probably the huge floral arch over the doorway to Christ Church. It set the tone for a beautiful service. Or…can I have two? I loved our wedding invitation. I got to add my own touch to it–the envelope liner was a botanical pattern that I painted. If I get a third, I also loved the bridesmaids’ earrings, created just for them by my friend, jewelry designer Loren Hope.

    Our ceremony was truly the most incredible and meaningful experience. The groom and I began–begrudgingly at first–going to church more regularly during the year of our engagement. Over the course of time, we found that we really enjoyed the ritual and the connections we made with the clergy and the friends we encouraged to join us. Standing in the church together, feeling the full weight and significance of the commitment we were making, in light of our joined effort of preparation, was incredible.

    Tell us all the basics of your wedding! We were inspired by springtime in Washington, DC. The service was at Christ Church in Georgetown at 4:30 and the reception followed at The Chevy Chase Club. We chose Georgetown because Anderson and I fell in love there–we lived in Georgetown for three years before moving to NYC together. Christ Church holds a lot of meaning for me because it is the church my parents married at, where I was baptized, and where my father’s funeral took place. The Chevy Chase Club is my favorite place in Washington (even though it’s technically in Maryland). My adopted dad introduced my mom and me to this magical wonderland of gardens and relaxation in the midst of the busy grind of Washington, and it has always served as a place of happiness and celebration for our family.

    Did you have a cocktail hour? If so, what was it like? Yes! It was magnificent, out on the lawn in the perfect afternoon sunshine, complete with the club’s signature Adirondack chairs and mint juleps galore.

    What was Southern about your wedding? About two thirds of our guests! And the hospitality and warmth shared by everyone. We chose Southern-inspired foods like ham biscuits, fried green tomatoes, chicken and waffles, and shrimp and grits.

    Tell us a bit about your first dance. It was an athletic feat. The groom’s nickname is “Crazy Feet Fariss,” if that helps describe his moves on the dance floor. We danced to “You Put the Flame On It” by Charles Bradley.

    Were there any family traditions you included in the reception? We started the dancing with our family wedding favorite, “September” by Earth, Wind & Fire, and celebrated the cake cutting and toast with the same champagne flutes that were used at my parents’ wedding. Hopefully, champagne saber use will be a new family tradition in years to come!

    Who was one of the most special guests at your wedding? The groom’s grandmother, who managed to tear up the dance floor in a wheelchair, and my 101-year-old grandmother who joined us via Facetime on her iPad to see the flowers, the bride, and the groom (in that order)!

    When did y’all get married? May 17, 2014
    How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. We met in college when a friend set Anderson up as my date to my sorority formal in the spring of 2008. I wasn’t too sure about it at first, but he finally won me over by speaking in a faux British accent on the bus ride home about how excited he was to vote for Barack Obama. You can’t make this stuff up.
    Describe the proposal: We were visiting my family in Leesburg, Virginia for Easter. He crept into my childhood bedroom at 7 A.M. on Saturday morning and woke me up, kneeling next to the bed with a ring! We spent the rest of the weekend celebrating with our families, which made it even more special.
    Tell us about your beautiful engagement ring and how/why your husband (or the two of you!) chose it: My engagement ring was formerly the ring that my father gave to my mother for their engagement. My parents had a tragically short time together, as he passed away a few short years after their wedding. Later, when my mom remarried my adopted dad, she set the ring aside for me to wear someday. When Anderson asked for my hand, my mom knew it was time to give him the ring. Anderson reset the stone in its original antique Cartier setting with new diamond baguettes. To say I am obsessed with it is an understatement.
    Three adjectives that describe the day are: Joyful, traditionally elegant, and spring-like
    How many guests attended your wedding? 250
    What was the biggest challenge you faced while planning your wedding? Deciding what I wanted our wedding invitation to look like. As an artist and a stationery designer, this felt like the biggest decision of my life. I over-thought it for weeks! The day those finally were signed, sealed, and delivered, I felt so relieved!
    Who was your officiant? Why did you choose him/her? The officiant was the Reverend Stuart Kenworthy. He officiates the majority of weddings at Christ Church and is adored by his congregation. Having him marry us was such an honor, especially when we learned we were one of the last couples he married before his retirement.
    What was the most memorable or touching moment about your wedding day? One moment I loved was when the Reverend asked the congregation to respond with “We will” in response to the question of would they do everything in their power to help us uphold our vows. Everyone responded in unison, “We will” and then a moment later, one of the sweet little flower girls (twin four-year-olds) piped up, “WE WILL!” very enthusiastically, just a moment after the crowd. I loved that she was listening to and participating in our big day, even if her timing was a little off.
    What’s next for you as a couple? We’re settling into married life in our new apartment in NYC and trying to decide if there’s room in our tiny love nest for a puppy!
    Best advice or most memorable comment someone made to you during the wedding celebration: My matron of honor warned me to give my toast first, before anyone else gave me a chance to start crying by giving an emotional toast before me. I’m so glad I listened. I was able to give a toast to Anderson that showed him how much I love him without bursting into tears!

    Photographer: Kate Headley / Planner: Simply Chic Events / Ceremony venue and ceremony flowers: Christ Church / Reception venue, catering, and cake: Chevy Chase Club / Flowers, lighting, and reception decor: Amaryllis / Bride’s gown: “Katherine” by Vera Wang / Bridal salon and veil: Vera Wang / Bride’s shoes: Jimmy Choo / Bride’s jewelry: Cartier / Bridesmaid dresses: Jenny Yoo / Hair and makeup: Audrey Bethards / Bow ties: Lumina / Paper goods: Dempsey & Carroll / Envelope liners: Inslee by Design / Rentals and linens: DC Rental / Transportation: International Limo

    lisa Written with love by Lisa
    3 Comments
    1. avatar Erika {Artfully Wed} reply

      I love that she chose white for the bridal party! It looks so elegant!

    2. avatar Dana reply

      food sounds so yummy! What a happy couple!

    3. avatar Happy Weekend: 5 Links I Love reply

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