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Abby and David deeply desire to “live their lives in a way that leaves a legacy of compassion,” and they wanted their wedding to be a reflection of intentionality and authenticity. I think it’s safe to say that this worthy goal was definitely felt throughout their sweet wedding day! Abby and David hosted their guests at Abby’s beautiful family home, where it was easy to create a comfortable and welcoming environment. Abby’s mama, the owner of Brown Eyed Girl Antiques, helped them bring their eclectic aesthetic to life while focusing on keeping guests warm and cozy, complete with family quilts, warm cider, and lots of fire pits for chatting around. If their ear-to-ear smiles are any indication, I’m sure guests were ever so grateful for this hospitality!

Thanks to Someplace Wild for sharing this lovely day with us!

Shortly after David proposed, my family traveled to St. Augustine, Florida where my mom, sister, stepdad, and I went to a few local wedding shops. Choosing my dress was one of the fastest decisions of the wedding planning process! At one store, the owner said she knew just the dress for me. I walked out wearing it, my stepdad got teary-eyed, and I knew that was the one. I had never seen him cry in my life! It was also the perfect fit–I was able to buy it off the rack, which was good because our engagement was only five months long. When we returned to our car, I looked through my wedding folder and found a magazine page of the EXACT dress I had just purchased. It was definitely meant to be!

What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? I loved being able to have Someplace Wild as our photographer. Christina has an amazing talent of making everyone feel comfortable. I can see every emotion in the faces of guests that she captured. Having her present during my wedding day was a complete joy. I will cherish what she created for years to come.

We had a lot of music throughout the ceremony. David is a musician so this was his area of expertise. We chose “Found a Heart” by Emily Hearn while the bridal party walked down the aisle–we love this song because it really expresses the excitement and magnitude of the wedding day.

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We chose to reserve our first look for the ceremony. It took my breath away to see him as I walked down the aisle, and made that moment really special!

What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? I think the key to saving money was keeping the guest list to an intimate size. This was difficult to do, but really helped in the end.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We got married at my family home. It created a comfortable and cherished environment for our wedding day!

My favorite detail of the wedding was having it in my family home and how much of an impact my mom’s decorative style had on the evening. She owns an antique booth called Brown Eyed Girl Antiques, so she was able to salvage and create various environments throughout the night. My favorite pieces were the lanterns with lit candles hanging in the trees! She was a part of every detail and her industrial, eclectic style shined throughout the night. We had a wonderful time working together as a family to create this weekend, with surprisingly minimal arguments :) Many guests stayed late into the night visiting and socializing, even after we had departed. This was a great aspect of having an at-home wedding.

We had a very bohemian-styled cake, courtesy of Caken’ it Easy, that was a textured, three-tiered cake in a classic white with mossy green accents. Lynn Bottoms and Betty Cox, who are local family friends, also made their specialty desserts and added variety to the selection!

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? The meal was provided by ROUX, a local Southern restaurant. We served cajun shrimp and grits and Lowcountry boil on vintage Blue Willow plates. My stepdad, grandfather, and a local carpenter built a wooden cross as the centerpiece for the ceremony. The wood was obtained from the floor of an old local barn. We provided hand-sewn quilts for our guests as they sat during the ceremony. I gave my bridesmaids vintage brooches to place in their bouquets. I picked them based on personality, hoping they could wear these brooches again! We also had fire pits throughout the yard for guests to sit around and enjoy watching the dancing!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. David and I met through mutual friends at a wedding. I snuck over to his table and ended up spending the majority of the night talking with him! He instantly caught me off guard with his humor and genuine demeanor–I wasn’t even afraid to tell him about my fear of wearing red at weddings or that I had almost read the COMPLETELY wrong scripture during the ceremony (John and 1 John…there is a difference). From the beginning, our friendship was simple and real. We continued to see each other at various events over the next few months. I literally lit up inside every time I saw him, but neither of us had decided to pursue one another quite yet…..until the marriage of the previously mentioned mutual friends! At their wedding, David finally asked for my number and called a few days later. Our first date was at La Fonda, where we spent hours trying to decide what to order between our endless chatter and laughter. We went with the chicken tacos, and the rest is history.
Tell us all about the proposal! One of the things on our dating bucket list was to hike Stone Mountain and watch the sunrise. David picked me up one Sunday morning at 5:42. I don’t even think I brushed my hair that day…too early. We started our hike around 6:30 am. About halfway up the mountain, I began wondering if maybe we should call it a day and watch the sunrise from the bottom, but David quickly persuaded me to keep going. The view from the top was beautiful, and we picked a rock to sit on and enjoy the sunrise. At one point, I asked David if he had any water in the backpack he had carried up the mountain. He looked at me and said, “No, but you know what I do have in this backpack?” He then got down on one knee with a ring and asked me to be his WIFE! After a few seconds of elation, I turned around to find a few of our best friends, who had trekked up the mountain before dawn to surprise me! As if that was not enough, David had planned a surprise breakfast with our close friends and family when we hiked back down. I cannot tell you how many times I cried tears of joy on this day!
When did y’all get married? November 15, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 120
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? We had meetings with our pastor for premarital counseling and also read the book “The Meaning of Marriage” by Tim Keller. A lot of our focus was on our marriage–we really did not fret over details of the wedding. With the help of our family, I knew it would all come together just as it was meant to.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? I would say my most memorable moment was my stepfather and dad walking me down the aisle. My parents separated when I was five years old. A few years later, my mom remarried and my stepdad came into the picture. My stepdad has been a rock in my life and is the most dependable man I know. My father and him get along well, and my dad has also been very active and supportive in my life. Their relationship has always been jovial and supportive. Having these two walk me down the aisle was a great moment of healing and happiness for me and my family. Also, my stepdad is a man of few words. He has always been the provider and “go-getter” rather than the “let’s talk about it” type. He made it clear he wasn’t wanting to make a speech, and requested that my mother give the welcome speech for both of them! This was fine with me, and the planning continued. However, midway through dinner the night of the wedding, my stepdad stood up and asked for the crowd’s attention. I thought he was going to make a general statement about where to go once dinner was completed. Instead, he gave the most eloquent, authentic speech about how proud he was of me and how supportive he was of our marriage. Almost every guest was left speechless and teary-eyed. It was standing ovation-worthy. I will never forget it!
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We want to leave a legacy of compassion. We want to be remembered as a couple who cares and who can be dependable in a time of need. We want to be remembered as intentional and authentic. I hope the details of our wedding captured this, but we also try to live this principle out in our daily lives as well.

Photographer: Christina Devictor / Planner: Beth Miller and Laura Hintz / Venue: Private residence / Florist: Funky Mountain Flowers / Wedding Cake: Cake’n It Easy / Caterer: Roux on Canton / Rentals: Tents, Tents, Tents / Lighting and Special Details: Brown Eyed Girl Antiques / Music: Jim Drennan and Tory Fallis / DJ: Omar of Spectrum Events / Hair and Makeup: Elle Cardenas / Bride’s Shoes: Antonio Melani / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Style #F15555 in Mercury by David’s Bridal / Menswear: The Black Tux

marissa Written with love by Marissa
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    Is there anything better than a Southern summer? The joy and simplicity of long days at the lake, neighborhood swimming holes, juicy watermelon slices, sprinklers on full blast, picnics on the grass, and long days spent with dear friends inspired this shoot, beautifully styled by Amber Housley and Cedarwood Weddings and photographed by Nancy Ray Photography. It is practically impossible not to smile at this all-American editorial that reaches back into our sweetest childhood memories with the goal of inspiring a lighthearted and joyful beginning to marriage!

    See more from this editorial in V7, now available in the Southern Weddings Shop and on newsstands across the South!

    Latrice of Opulent Couturier took our patriotic color palette and ran with it when it came to dressing up these ladies, gents, kiddos, and even a dapper dog!

    Cedarwood Weddings, just outside of Nashville, was the perfect setting for this lakeside shoot–we love the way this decorated dock looked as an intimate ceremony space.

    Watermelon slices and ice cold bottles of Cheerwine epitomize summer to us–they’d be an amazing cocktail hour treat on a hot July day!

    We can’t get enough of food trucks, and love the idea of your own personal “food truck rodeo” at your reception! Even without formal silverware, the presentation couldn’t be sweeter.

    Have an outdoor venue and lots of pint-sized guests? Include a note in your invitation suite asking their parents to pack swimsuits and towels, and then set up sprinklers for some reception fun! We guarantee it’ll become one of their favorite memories.

    S’mores, a campfire, and a quilt to cuddle up on–this sweet end to the day is a tradition that can be carried into many newlywed summers to come.

    Photographer: Nancy Ray Photography / Videographer: Nicholas & Keaton / Venue, Styling, Florals, and Signage: Cedarwood Weddings / Coordinator, Designer, and Paper Goods: Amber Housley Weddings / Watercolor Map: Simply Jessica Marie / Catering: Poppy’s Cafe, Legato Gelato, The Peach Truck / Cakes: Patty Cakes / Hair and Makeup: Tara Thomas and Gina Putnam of Studio BBC / Fashion Stylist: Opulent Couturier / Bride’s Gown: “McCants” by LulaKate / Reception Dress: “Organza Striped” by LulaKate / Bridal Salon: The Bride Room / Bride’s Veil and Hair Accessories: Beatrice Couture Designs / Ladies’ and Kids’ Accessories: Charming Charlie / Bridesmaid Dresses: LulaKate / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Bella Bridesmaids Nashville / Menswear: Street Tuxedo / Bow Tie: Otis James Nashville / Men’s and Kids’ Accessories: Land of the Thread / Kids’ Clothing: Gap Kids Green Hills Mall Nashville and Chaps Ralph Lauren

    Nancy Ray, Amber Housley, and Cedarwood Weddings are all delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

    lisa Written with love by Lisa
    11 Comments
    1. avatar Southern Weddings V7: Fancy Free Behind the Scenes – Southern Weddings Magazine reply

      […] miss the final images and all of the talented vendors from this shoot, which you can see right here! And a huge hug to […]

    2. avatar Amber Housley reply

      So thrilled to have been a part of this HOT but magical today. So great working with all the vendors and friends involved to make this come to life. Thank you for the opportunity to produce this for you!

    3. avatar Latrice Cushenberry reply

      It was an absolute joy to be apart of such an amazing shoot & see it come to life! Thank you for the opportunity to share & style! {{{Many hugs & squeezes}}}

    4. avatar Fun and Fancy Free Styled Shoot in Southern Weddings V7 | Amber Housley | Nashville Wedding Planner | Designer | Nashville Wedding Planner | Stylist | Custom Wedding Invitations Stationery | Lifestyle | Inspired reply

      […] an honor to see our styled photo shoots published, especially when the publication happens to be in Southern Weddings V7! We adore the heart behind this magazine and the ladies who run it, and are feeling so blessed to […]

    5. avatar Fun and Fancy Free Styled Shoot in Southern Weddings V7 | Full Feature | Amber Housley | Nashville Wedding Planner | Designer | Nashville Wedding Planner | Stylist | Custom Wedding Invitations Stationery | Lifestyle | Inspired reply

      […] say that we are thrilled to have our Fun and Fancy Free styled shoot featured in the newly released Southern Weddings V7 is an understatement! We adored […]

    6. avatar lisa johnson reply

      Spectacular! Cedarwood never disappoints – a gorgeous Nashville Wedding tradition!

    7. avatar Unique bridesmaid dresses in stripe and polka dot prints – Wedding Party reply

      […] Nancy Ray Photography via Southern Weddings […]

    8. avatar Get Inspired: How to Incorporate Stripes Into Your Wedding Design – Southern Soiree Nashville Wedding Planning and Design reply

      […] Southern Weddings; Nancy Ray Photography […]

    9. avatar Inspired By: The Peach Truck – Kyla Mary reply

      […]  I had seen glimpses of The Peach Truck on Instagram and in one of the latest Southern Weddings editorials, but I was unsure of what it was exactly. After doing a little research, I now have a sweet spot […]

    10. avatar Making Cookout Food Without a Grill – Kyla Mary reply

      […] Nancy Ray Photography via Southern Weddings […]

    11. avatar Happy 10th Anniversary Southern Weddings! My 10 Favorite Editorials – Kyla Mary reply

      […] America, community, and playful details make this look like so much fun! I feel that this editorial gave me permission to allow some aspects of our wedding to be casual but charming. View the original post here. […]

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    As if I wasn’t already anxious enough for warm weather, Lara-Anne and Chad’s wedding encompasses so many of the sweetest things about the great outdoors. Their love for nature and adventure is evident in so many of their big moments–from their meeting in one of the world’s most scenic places, New Zealand, to Chad’s camping trip proposal–so it was only fitting that they brought their love for all things outdoors-y into their North Carolina wedding. I can practically feel the crisp mountain air while scrolling though their beautiful pictures!

    Thank you so much to Jim Trice for sharing Lara-Anne and Chad’s wedding with us!

    Chad proposed June 30, 2012 while we were camping in the middle of nowhere in New Hampshire. Upon returning to our campsite after a hike, we walked down to a lily pad pond, where I told him how much the whole setting reminded me of my beloved summer camp in western North Carolina. As I turned around, I found Chad on one knee. Tears and laughter followed, and we spent the rest of the night drinking champagne and enjoying baked stuffed lobsters over a campfire.

    Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I knew I wouldn’t be one of those brides who started crying at the bridal boutique, so I was open-minded from the beginning about the process of finding a dress. I knew I wanted something that I would feel comfortable in throughout the night, and that had a touch of bohemian. I ended up ordering the Luella Gown by Catherine Deane from BHLDN. I wish I could wear it again and again, but I absolutely destroyed it.

    The church had white hydrangea blooms tied with ribbon on each pew, and the altar flowers were large white hydrangea arrangements. We really wanted to keep the flowers inside All Saints simple, so as not to distract from the church’s natural beauty. My bouquet was a mix of white ranunculus, white garden roses, green hydrangea, green celosia, ferns, and succulents. The bridesmaid bouquets were a mix of red celosia, orange ranunculus, green hydrangea, lamb’s ear, and ferns. All of the bouquets were wrapped with burlap ribbon.

    Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Even though I knew a first look could alleviate some anxiety, I felt very strongly about not doing one. Whether I cried hysterically or laughed uncontrollably from nerves, so be it! I wanted our photographer to capture the raw emotion of us first seeing each other when that church door opened.

    What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? One of the hors d’oeuvres was whole fried okra and the dinner menu included shrimp & grits and fried green tomatoes. We did a tribute to my hometown of Winston-Salem, North Carolina by displaying a R.J. Reynolds tobacco selection and mini Texas Pete hot sauces. We also served late-night Krispy Kreme donuts. Chad was a Kappa Alpha at Elon, and it’s tradition for the groom and his fraternity brothers to sing the KA rose song to the bride and each hand her a red rose at the end of the song. This was slightly embarrassing, but more hilarious than anything.

    Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Our wedding cake was modeled after the Aspen tree; it looked so real. It was a three-tiered white butter cake with lemon curd buttercream. The cake had “C & LA” carved in a heart on the side and a moss “B” monogram topper for Bradley, and was displayed on top of moss and a wooden cake stand.

    Chad and I danced to “Little Baby” by the Rolling Stones and my dad and I danced to “She’s A Rainbow” by the Rolling Stones. Notice the trend? The Stokes family is a gang of diehard Rolling Stones fans who love and appreciate good ‘ole rock ‘n’ roll. Our band brought down the house and had wedding guests limboing under trumpets and saxophones on the dance floor. The last song of the night had me crying the happiest tears ever.

    We loved our send-off at the end of the night. Our guests lined the path leading down to the water with sparklers. Once Chad and I arrived at the boat house, we got into a canoe and paddled off across the pond into the night. It gave us a few minutes to talk about how special the evening had been and how lucky we felt…and to prepare for the after-party!

    How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Chad and I met during our junior year of college at Elon University while studying abroad in New Zealand. At the risk of sounding hokey, we spent the remainder of the program attached at the hip. Once we returned to the States, we were inseparable. After graduating, we moved west to Aspen, Colorado to follow our dreams of being ski bums. It was a life-changing move that quickly reassured us of not only the love we have for each other but also our shared love for all that the Rocky Mountains had to offer.
    When did y’all get married? September 14, 2013
    How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 170
    What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We had my cousin, Allison Elsee, read an excerpt from “The Velveteen Rabbit” by Margery Williams.
    Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. For the ceremony, we had a trio of students from the Winston-Salem School of the Arts join the church organist, which created a powerful sound in our quaint little mountain church. My dad and I walked down the aisle to “Prince of Denmark’s March,” and Chad and I walked out to “The Wedding March” from A Midsummer Night’s Dream.
    Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My borrowed and blue was my mom’s diamond and sapphire anniversary band that my dad had given her, my something old was a thin gold chain that had been my grandmother’s, and my new was my wedding dress.
    What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? While we were engaged, we were living in Boston, so planning from afar wasn’t always the most convenient thing. Luckily, both my mom and our wedding planners were in the Carolinas, so they made the process as easy as it could have been. I am so thankful for their time, patience, and help throughout the process.
    What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? Our wedding planners from Sweetgrass Social absolutely made our wedding what it was. From day one, they were available anytime we needed them, whether it was for a two-minute call or a two-hour call. They were honest about our design ideas, very thorough, insanely organized, and super communicative to us and to our vendors. This alleviated so much stress, especially since I was planning from New England. Walking into our reception was overwhelming; every detail we had discussed over the past fifteen months was right before us and I couldn’t have imagined it looking any better than it did. Having them be a part of wedding weekend from the start was one of the smartest moves we made.
    What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Do I have to choose? Our band pulled Chad and I onto the stage for the last song of the night, and looking out at all of our guests was just awesome. We were surrounded by our supportive families and our closest friends, and you could literally feel the love and happiness in the room. It brought me to tears. I also have to mention my other most memorable moment: seeing my sweet dad’s face when he rounded the corner after I was dressed and ready to head to the church. I will never forget it for as long as I live. It’s one of those moments you dream of when you’re a little girl and I wish I could re-live it over and over.
    What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? R-E-L-A-X. Seriously. Take a deep breath. Don’t get so caught up in the details and the planning that you forget why you’re even having a wedding. It all works out, so enjoy it!
    What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? After returning from our honeymoon, we moved back out west to Aspen. We love being back in our favorite mountain town and skiing together every weekend. Next up for us is a road trip to the Pacific Northwest in our Volkswagen Westfalia, Bernie!

    Photographer: Jim Trice Photography / Videographer: Whit Haynes Films & Photography / Planner: Sweetgrass Social / Ceremony Venue: All Saints Episcopal Church / Reception Venue: Camp Yonahnoka at the Eseeola Lodge / Florist: Callista Designs / Cake Baker: Christina Banner Cakes / Caterer: The Eseeola Lodge / Band: Sol Fusion / Bride’s Gown: “Luella” by BHLDN Paper Products: Invitations Only / Bride’s Flower Crown: Callista Designs / Bride’s Earrings and Pearl Bracelet: BHLDN / Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist: Beautiful Bride on Location / Bride’s Shoes: Tom’s / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Heidi in Graphite by J.Crew / Men’s Attire: Jos. A. Bank / Men’s Shoes: Converse

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

      This wedding is just beautiful and the theme is well played!

    2. avatar Amy reply

      I would LOVE to know the designer of the cake topper !!!!

    3. avatar Heather reply

      This wedding is so beautiful! The flowers are absolutely gorgeous!

    Southern Weddings reserves the right to delete comments which contain profanity or personal attacks or seek to promote a business unrelated to the post.  And remember: a good attitude is like kudzu – it spreads.  We love hearing your kind thoughts!

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