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Southern Weddings

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Two years ago today, we launched the very first issue of Southern Weddings aka V1.  Y’all know we are a small office.  We dream up, design, create, pack and ship this baby all by ourselves.  We had been through the ringer with V1, so finally getting it out on stands was so exciting!  It sold out very quickly and I only have a tiny box left for posterity.

Photo above by Millie Holloman. On the rack from top to bottom: our test issue, V1 and V2.   So much has changed in our design (thanks to me learning how to not use so many 1980’s drop shadows and Em’s great eye!).  With Emily and Katharine on board, we’ve grown into a brand that is solid and defined.  Our goal is to give you, dear readers, the best realistic, authentic, approachable southern wedding inspiration.  Thank you all for two blessed years on newsstands!  V4 will definitely be our biggest issue yet!  A few of my favorite spreads from V1…  Chelsea and Tec photographed by Jose Villa.

A deliciously sweet spread from Amy Atlas

Loads of bling from so many great photographers…

Film fabulousness from the best in weddings…

And some of my very favorite real weddings of all time…

GIVEAWAY: In honor of our Two Year Print-aversary, I’m giving away one of my personal copies of V1!  Just leave a comment here telling me your favorite thing about weddings in the South. We’ll choose a random winner next Friday.

P.S. In case you missed the big news on Friday, we’re growing and we’re hiring!

lara Written with love by Lara Casey
  1. avatar Jeannine @ Small & Chic Home reply

    I love that Southern Weddings, while aware of trends in weddings, doesn’t shy away from what is classic and elegant. I also love that vintage touches and tradition are celebrated in your pages. I don’t always get that feeling from the inch thick, generic magazines that are stacked next to SW on the shelves.

  2. avatar Marcy reply

    The beautiful thing about a southern wedding is that they are always about more than just the dress or the venue or the cake. Whether it’s a sprawling tent filled to the brim with twinkle lights and candles or a barn with mason jars full of sweet tea and precious paper flowers, at the end of the night, it’s about more than all of that. It’s about the people. The groom dancing with his grandmother and the maid of honor making her toast. It’s all about the families and the bridesmaids and the groomsmen. Every person in the south is defined by love and it’s really just about a day becoming a dream for two people.

  3. avatar sarah g reply

    the fact that i get to have a biscuits and grits bar at my wedding :)

  4. avatar Summer Gaal reply

    My favourite moment in a wedding is seeing the look on the grooms face as his bride walks down the aisle towards him. It’s just pure love. I can’t wait for the day I’m walking down the aisle, and I see my soon-to-be husband looking at me with such love.

    My favourite thing about a southern wedding is how everyone is part of it. Your family and friends aren’t just guests, they are what makes the day so special. Everyone sharing in love.

  5. avatar Kelly Sauer reply

    I’m becoming such an SW junkie – If I weren’t so busy, I’d totally apply to work with y’all! But as it stands….

    Weddings in the South: My favorite thing is the “anything goes” that seems to always work out into something refined and drop-dead gorgeous. And seriously, can you beat Southern locations for charm?

  6. avatar Leslie reply

    Happy Print-aversary! I hadn’t previously read your post about the challenges you had getting started…WOW. Way to Rock on!!!

    My favorite thing about weddings in the South…I’d have to say it’s the style they always have and the way they incorporate traditions. Southern brides are not afraid to be themselves! Little touches like mason jar drinks and weddings underneath Spanish moss-laden trees…SWOON.

  7. avatar Laura reply

    Congrats girls! My favorite thing about wedding in the south would be family and friends. We southern folks do it up right with all of our many many loved ones at hand, even if it means more mouths to feed!

  8. avatar Jenna Lea reply

    So I am still fairly new to the site and the magazine … but ever since I read V3 cover to cover, I check the blog all the time and its has become a go to for chats with my newly engaged bff. That being said, I’d love a copy of the first issue, and see what Ive been missing out on. But for what makes Southern Weddings soo unique, I think its the ability we have to combine the old with the new. There’s a sense of simple times and things gone by, but never is there anything simple or mundane about a southern wedding. Rather an heir and flair of sass.

  9. avatar Christie reply

    Hmmm, one of my favorite parts about a Southern wedding might be the flowers! No one does floral arrangements like the South!

  10. avatar Morgan reply

    This is such a hard question because I love all things weddings and especially ones in the South! I would have to say though, my favorite thing about Southern weddings is the size! In the South, it’s totally acceptable and actually encouraged to have a big wedding. I loved planning my recent October wedding and the 500 of my closest friends that were there :)

  11. avatar Charity reply

    I have to choose just one? I would have to say the emotion of Southern weddings. Everything from the flowers to the dresses to the groomsmen all have a significance in Southern weddings and each tie to a memory, tradition, or simply something sweet having to do with the couple. Charming, Elegant & Detailed!

  12. avatar Kristin Nicole reply

    I love the southern charm, and casual feel of southern weddings…you could never get away with it in the north.

  13. avatar Kim reply

    I love the charm and family focus of weddings in the south! Also, nothing beats good ol’ southern home cooking :)

  14. avatar Linden reply

    The House Party! Maybe this is a Texas thing and not all of the South, but here in Texas most brides choose a House Party, which is the group of girls who are friends with the bride and not bridesmaids. It’s so much fun! You get all the perks of being a ‘maid without having to buy a pricey gown. And as a bride, you get more of your close friends who get to share in your special day.
    But my true favorite thing about a southern wedding is the look in the southern gentleman’s eyes when he sees his belle of a bride walking down the aisle. Nothing can compare to those southern boys who are so in love.

  15. avatar Katrina reply

    My favorite thing about weddings in the South is the authenticity of it all. No matter what the couple’s style and theme happen to be, you always get a feeling of warmth and familiarity of the celebration. It’s real, it’s welcoming, it’s a Southern wedding.

  16. avatar Elizabeth reply

    This is a hard one…maybe because I am talking with caterers right now, I’m going to say the food! Cause where else in the world does it seem perfectly fitting to serve fried green tomatos and sweet tea out of mason jars when your dressed in your best?!

  17. avatar Elizabeth reply

    This is a hard one…maybe because I am talking with caterers right now, I’m going to say the food! Cause where else in the world does it seem perfectly fitting to serve fried green tomatoes and sweet tea out of mason jars when your dressed in your best?!

  18. avatar Megan D. reply

    My favorite part about a wedding in the South is tradition. Tradition is a beautiful way to honor history and loved ones. Traditions are often unique and beautiful, and make each wedding so perfect!

  19. avatar Rachel reply

    Southern weddings have so many unique characteristics, and often seemed to be defined by the very region …the region of the people, the region of the wedding, or even the region of the inspiration. As a Charleston girl, I love the elegance of Southern weddings. As a South Carolina girl, nothing beats seersucker suits and boiled peanuts. But, the most unifying (and unique) feature of Southern weddings comes from the hearts of the people. The family and friends of the bride and groom seem to define what makes Southern weddings so ….southern. Yes, its the first dance and the “I do’s” but its more than that. It comes from the sense of family, of togetherness, of belonging, of true hospitatily,and genuine love that define Southern weddings. It’s about Southern families expanding and growing, yes, in the very Southern style and charm that’s expected, but also with love and grace.

  20. avatar Sydney reply

    My favorite thing about a Southern wedding? Not only is the sweet tea and Southern drawls but it is the community that pulls together when planning a wedding. While planning my own Southern wedding, I have felt so much love, support, ideas and refreshing creativity from my good ole’ Southern family and friends.

  21. avatar Jessica reply

    I stil scour ebay from time to time searching for V1 of this great publishment. I would love having a complete collections – some day! :)

    My favorite thing about weddings in the south… they exude a feeling of community ties with great roots.

  22. avatar Jeana reply

    I have loved you country gals from the beginning! I love the honesty I feel from you all and I love that you actually answer readers emails when they have a concern. You guys are the best! Just had to say that!
    But anywooooo! I love southern weddings because of the atmosphere, they NEVER feel stuffy or like a wedding, most of the time it feels like a HUGE family reunion with great food and drinks. I have been and always will be a southern girl! Thanks ya’ll!

  23. avatar JGarcia reply

    I love that in southern weddings, food is one of the highest priorities!

  24. avatar Sally Geer reply

    My favorite part about a southern wedding is that a girl and her mama having been planning the day since she was a little girl. A southern wedding is not just a day full of memories but a lifetime of hopes and dreams coming true.

  25. avatar Katherine reply

    Arnold Palmers during cocktail hour!
    ……..oh and hunting dogs in bowties!

  26. avatar Adrienne reply

    The best thing about weddings int he South are the Mamas. MIne just bought me the wedding dress of my dreams yesterday and will be a steel magnolia for me all the way unitl I say I do.

  27. avatar Anna reply

    Weddings down South are warm and welcoming. They are deeply rooted in family and allow couples to express the traditions each partner wants to carry on from their background. With every marriage in the South, a hint of new tradition is born.

  28. avatar Genevieve reply

    My favorite thing about weddings in the south is that touch of southern grace, elegence, and flair that only a southern wedding can fully embody.

  29. avatar mariana herrera mosli reply

    My favorite thing about weddings in the South: FOOD! Need I say more?! ;)

    P.S. Happy two year print-aversary!! I really, really, have my fingers crossed and praying to win! I didn’t know about Southern Weddings until V2 came around, so I have the last two issues & I am missing V1! Every time I look at my shelf and see that I am missing the very first issue, it breaks my heart a little more!

    All my love!!

  30. avatar Sydney Dawn reply

    My favorite thing about southern weddings are the family traditions that can be so gracefully entwined in a ceremony.

  31. avatar Loren reply

    I love how uniquely planned they are! Most weddings I’ve been to are strictly traditional. My eyes have been opened to a whole new world of spectacular decorations, invites and plenty of DIY things for a homemade junkie like me :)
    I was glued to this long before I was engaged.

  32. avatar Ashton reply

    Being a Tennessee Belle, growing up was all about wedding season. And being a southern girl, I am very indecisive and have too many favorites to name. I love the drama seeing estranged families coming together for the big occasion. It’s like a mini soap opera! Also, I think southern brides are some of the most beautiful women in the world. We were raised by mothers that taught us grace and sophistication can charm the pants off an entire room of boys. So when a southern bride walks down the aisle, she demands (in a sweet way) the attention of everyone around her and she gets it! Your magazine/blog is so me! My mom put your latest edition in my stocking for Christmas and I couldn’t get enough. It’s made me consider changing from being a dentist to becoming a wedding planner. :)

  33. avatar Weekly Round-Up « Southern Weddings Magazine reply

    […] fellow weekend-lovers! The past two weeks have been big for us. We celebrated thetwo year anniversary of our very first issue and published our big news! All the excitement might have crashed our […]

  34. avatar Mandy reply

    As the first of 5 sisters to get to the altar, I am the classic pioneer woman to say the least. My mother planned her own wedding in 3 months without the help of her mother; so unfortunately, I do not have the much needed maternal guidance as well. However, I must say that she is trying her best to be a helpful MOB.

    What I love the most about SWMag is the consistent, thoughtful, creative, and helpful advice you are sharing with so many brides! From the abundance of gorgeous pictures to the Etiquette lessons with Emily, there are so many ways you are teaching us the in’s and out’s of producing a beautiful and classic southern wedding. I would not know where to begin had I not stumbled upon you site 8 months ago. Since then I am constantly spreading the news about your awesome blog and magazine. Several of my newly engaged friends are addicted to your site now as well! Thanks SWMag for all that you do for us brides!

  35. avatar Shelby reply

    Al Green put it perfectly when he said “all I can say is there’s a sweetness here…a Southern sweetness.” Southern weddings have the ability to combine the sweet, slow-talking nature of southerners with the romance and love that a wedding brings. Every southern bride exudes the happiest air about them and you can’t help but smile when you see the father give the bride away. You can’t stop yourself from imagining the bride and groom growing old together, sippin sweet tea in a rocking chair on their wrap around porch watching their children grow into little debs and gentlemen. There is something so perfect in the air at a southern wedding, the mason jars with flickering lights, the magnolia’s filling the room….a feeling that can’t be matched.

  36. avatar Heather Freeman reply

    I am new to checking out blogs for inspiration for my upcoming May southern wedding. My photographer (Ashley Thompson, Muskogee, OK) (YES, Muskogee, like the song “Okie from Muskogee” by Merle Haggard, if you have never heard it check it out! It makes us “Okies” feel famous!) recommended you when I told her I was in a planning rut! I CANT thank her enough! I could get lost in wedding blogs for hours! Especially yours! When I saw this post I had to share this quote with you that has always made me feel special and definitely reflects the South!
    “A couple days in Oklahoma will open your eyes to how much better it would be if the rest of the country was filled with a few more people from Oklahoma”-Adam Duritz -Counting Crows
    -Even though this just talks about Oklahoma, I think it pertains to all of the Southern States. I’ve been to other Northern states and whats up with people not waving at each other? Even if you dont know them? I just don’t get it! haha! We are about tradition, comfort, family, and combining old & new elements to make people feel like they are at “home”. From the sweet tea at the reception to the BBQ at the rehearsals, Southern girls know how to do it. No matter how many weddings I check out on here or friends weddings that I have attended, these elements shine through. Its kinda like “You can take the girl out of the South, but you can’t take the South out of the girl!” – I mean every bride deserves a gorgeous dress and while a Southern Bride gets the pretty dress, she also pairs it with a set of Cowboy boots!! Just thought I would share these things I love about the South! I don’t know what V1 is, but if its anything like the stuff I get lost in on your site, I am sure it is amazing!!

  37. avatar Winners :: BabbsBoutique, Airplanes + Blazers, Newlywish Registry, and a V1 giveaway « Southern Weddings Magazine reply

    […] for Erin C.! Enjoy your gift certificate! Last but certainly not least, we recently celebrated our two year print-aversary and we wanted to include you in the celebration! It has been a tremendous adventure these past two […]

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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2010 was the best year ever. Read my entire Year in Review here on my personal blog. I traveled to Dallas, Seattle, Los Angeles (7 times), Minneapolis (3 times), Chicago, Atlanta (33 times), New York (4 times), Nashville (2 times), Las Vegas, Denver, Irvine, Pensacola (7 times), Indianapolis, Grand Cayman, Miami (thrice), Washington DC, Boston, Salt Lake City, West Palm Beach, St Lucia, Barbados, Trinidad, Houston, Phoenix, San Francisco, Maui, and I’m currently in Vail with my family. Phew! I earned my SkyMiles this year.

In between all of that crazy travel, we launched an awesome magazine, a new blog, did a ton of gorgeous shoots and saw Katharine walk down the aisle.

I’ve watched Katharine and Emily grow and take the reins with this gorgeous blog and the print edition. I love spending my days with them. Seriously, every day is a highlight!

I’ve also had a lot of personal milestones. I got to know my half-sister for the first time ever. Our families reconnected this past Father’s day. That has been awesome. I love my family. So many blessings!

But, the biggest highlight for me is the very reason we even got to do all of this in the first place: marriage. Marriage rocks.

I’ll be celebrating my five year wedding anniversary in March, and I’ve never been more in love. Forget what you hear in the news – it is possible to grow in marriage and love each other more than when you first met. I’m living it. It was not at all easy to get here, but the work of marriage has been the best work I’ve ever done. Highlight = husband.

I’m grateful to God for filling my heart so much this year. I’m ready for whatever is next, but I am very happy right here.

photo credits top to bottom: A Bryan Photo, Millie Holloman, Paul Johnson, Gina Zeidler, A Bryan Photo, Gina Zeidler.

lara Written with love by Lara Casey

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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NOTE: Some of you may have spotted this post on Lara’s personal blog a few days ago, but until we get our feeds figured out, we’re going to be posting “personal” content here, too!

Hi y’all! Welcome to the NEW It List – top wedding images that inspire the daylights out of me! No rules here; just what makes my heart go pitter patter. Enjoy!

I love images that tell a story… especially images that get me curious about that story. This series from Amelia Lyon makes me want to jump into these photographs and be a fly on the wall!

The instant I saw this succulent kiss from my dear friend Natalie Norton, I gasped. I love her hand in the air, as if she is just smitten with love and abandon!

Otto Schulze frequently gives me photographic goosebumps. I can just hear this moment with the boys.

Something about this turn to cool weather makes me crave wool and heather gray and my husband’s warm chest to rest my head on. Jonathan Canlas brought the warm fuzzies with these lovelies.

If you get too chilly in your neck of the woods, just stop by Paul Johnson’s blog. It’s summer all year round at one of my favorite places on earth, Allys Beach. Gorgeous couple and you know I love that bowtie! Paul also shot my family this summer and I just adore he and Mecheal.

Last but not least for today… I love you. I really do. Thanks, Image is Found. Wouldn’t you love to have a set of your man mouthing this to you for a rainy day?

Have an image you would like to submit? Tweet it to me @LaraCasey with the #ItList hashtag. I’d love to see what inspires you! So… which one above is your favorite?

lara Written with love by Lara Casey
  1. avatar Victoria Sharkey (@Carolinachic83) reply

    Love it all! Esp. the bottom pick, he could also be saying Elephant Shoe ;) …just a thought!

  2. avatar Jessica Lagomarcino reply

    I love the one with her hand in the air too! Great moment captured.

    But I also LOVE Jonathan Canlas’ work… looked into him for MY wedding!

  3. avatar Kristen Steele reply

    I absolutely ADORE Natalie’s photo!! The coloring, their joy, the gorgeous details… superb! I’ll be posting some of my photos for the #ItList soon so stay tuned! :)

  4. avatar Sydney Dawn reply

    I love the one of the group of guys. The contrast between the dark shadows and the white shirts is awesome. And every one of them has an awesome expression on their face, a lot of emotion. I’m also loving the denim shirt the guy has on in Paul Johnson’s photo.

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!

Reply to: