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Y’all, we could not have been more thankful to celebrate with so many of you (or toasted y’all from afar!) last night at the V7 Launch Party! While we may still be picking glitter out of our hair, Liza and David’s sweet wedding is the perfect cure for the post-party blues!

In true Southern fashion, Liza and David’s first date involved college sports superstitions and warm weather! But, not everything is traditional with these two–they chose to tie the knot at Camp Pinnacle, where many members of Liza’s family spent their summers growing up. Even though they were in a nontraditional venue, they chose to recite traditional vows, and even omitted the ring exchange per pre-WWII tradition, creating a sweet moment you can’t miss in their interview below.

Big thanks to Olivia Griffin for sharing this lovely day!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. My mom, my sister, and David’s sister all came to Charleston to go dress shopping with me. We headed to a store called Fabulous Frocks, which sells new, once-worn, and sample designer bridal gowns. We were running late for the appointment and didn’t have time for lunch, so we recruited David to get some food for us. Instead of going to the front door, David walked right up to the side window where I was trying on the dress that ended up being “the one.” Whoops! The people at the shop were amazing–they were incredibly helpful and patient. It was such a pleasant experience!

We got married at Camp Pinnacle in Hendersonville, North Carolina. My dad, mom, sister, grandmother, and I all went to the camp growing up. David and I really wanted a wedding where all our friends could meet, hang out, and play together for the whole weekend. Most of our friends stayed in the cabins and got to enjoy all the canoeing, hiking, volleyball, and paintball the camp has to offer.

Recognize these lovely bridesmaid dresses? Nicole wore this Amsale print in our V6 team photos, and we loved it so much, we put it on our cover this year!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? There were two moments from the wedding that stand out to me. Keeping with traditions of pre-WWII, David didn’t want to wear a ring, so we omitted the ring exchange from the ceremony. After the guests had left the ceremony, David’s brother and best man, William, pulled the two of us and our two families aside for a small, impromptu ring ceremony. The second moment was during the reception, when my grandmother asked me, “What do you think people would say if I were to get up and dance?” I pulled her onto the dance floor and we had a blast; it was so fun to watch her living it up!!

Taste was most important to us as far as the cake was concerned, and although Brick Street Café in Greenville, South Carolina does not do traditional wedding cakes, they have the best cakes we have ever tasted. Their sweet potato cake with cream cheese icing is to die for! We opted for several cakes instead of one large traditional cake, and went with the sweet potato, red velvet, and patty cake with German chocolate, raspberry drizzle, and almond cream cheese icing.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. From David: After three years of working for Liza’s father’s law firm, I had not been fired, but quickly realized my days were numbered. As chance would have it, I saw a beautiful girl at the law firm summer party. When I realized that this beautiful girl was a partner’s daughter, I set out to secure my job. It only took a little bit of convincing to get Liza to say yes to a date. While I tried to take her out to a nice dinner, she insisted on staying in so she could watch the USC National Championship baseball game. Liza wore her lucky sweatshirt, despite the warm weather–she had to take it off at every commercial break, thanks to her notoriously hot nature. The Gamecocks won the National Championship that year, which must have been a good sign. The rest is history.
Tell us all about the proposal! We got engaged on Friday, August 16, 2013 at the Biltmore Estate in Asheville, North Carolina. Despite David’s best efforts to keep the proposal a secret, I found the engagement ring when David not-so-sneakily stuffed it in the couch. Not wanting to ruin the surprise, I pretended to see nothing. After a long first semester in physical therapy school, I needed a break, and David suggested Asheville. He planned to propose at the Biltmore Estate; however, he forgot to see if it was actually open, and it was not. Luckily, the back half of the property and the winery were open. After a wine tasting and a nice stroll, David found a perfect spot next to a stream to pop the question. The real surprise, however, occurred when we went back to the Grove Park Inn where we were staying, and found both of our families waiting in rocking chairs on the deck! I was so caught up in the moment that I almost walked right past my own family! When I finally realized they were there, I was totally shocked. Festivities ensued, and both families spent the whole weekend celebrating and rafting.
When did y’all get married? May 17, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? About 300
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? Even though we were in a nontraditional venue, we still wanted to say traditional vows.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Once the wedding day has arrived, have fun and don’t worry about the details or the things that may go wrong. Although I thought our wedding was perfect because everyone had a great time, there were some details that were left out or forgotten. In the end, I don’t think anyone noticed or cared. Most importantly, if your mom offers to help, let her!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are living in Charleston, South Carolina. I am finishing up physical therapy school at MUSC while David is enjoying being his own boss at his solo law practice. It’s so great to be in a new city that is as beautiful as Charleston to start our life together. We really look forward to all the activities and adventures that we will experience together.

Photographer: Olivia Griffin / Planner, Florals, Rentals, and Lighting: Cricket Newman / Venue: Camp Pinnacle / Cake Baker: Brick Street Cafe / Catering: Classic Catering / Band: Celebrity Allstars / Bride’s Gown: “Amelie” by Monique Lhuillier / Bridal Salon: Fabulous Frocks / Bride’s Earrings: Caroline Shook / Hair and Makeup Artist: Bliss / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Amore” in Shell Silk Chiffon by Amsale / Groom’s Attire: J. Crew / Groomsmen Attire: Calvin Klein / Ties: High Cotton Ties / Officiating Minister: Amos Disasa / Ceremony Music: Split Rail / Rehearsal Dinner Band: West End String Band

marissa Written with love by Marissa
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Confession time, y’all: I am totally smitten with today’s darling couple! Berkley and Jack met at summer camp, started their relationship over AOL Instant Messenger, and spent the next ten years growing up and growing in love. Their beautiful wedding was a testament to both the history that they drew inspiration from (they were married at the same church where Berkley’s parents were married, and by the same pastor!) and the life that they are creating for themselves–they love the town of Saxapahaw so much, they moved there after the wedding, and now get to see their reception venue every day!

Thank you so much to our Blue Ribbon Vendor Robyn Van Dyke for sharing this special day with us!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Jack and I decided to see each other for the first time when the church doors opened and I walked down the aisle to him. However, we did have a “behind-the-door” moment before the ceremony. We held hands, prayed, and exchanged journals that we had written in throughout our engagement. I did have a first look with my dad though, and it was so special. It was one of the only times I’ve ever seen my dad cry. Let’s just say, emotions were high!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. At first, I thought I wanted to wear my mom’s wedding dress, so we brought the dress to a bridal salon to talk to them about remaking it. I was excited about that, but also had a little trouble envisioning how it would look once it was completed. On our way home, we had an appointment at another bridal shop in Salisbury. I tried on a few dresses, and then THE ONE. It was exactly what I had been hoping for, and my mom’s veil complemented it perfectly.

Our ceremony site (St. Mark’s Church in Burlington, North Carolina) was a no-brainer. My parents were married in that sanctuary by the same pastor 34 years before us, I was baptized and grew up in the church, and Jack’s family has also been members for over a decade.

What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? One of my former college roommates, Sarah Anne, read Philippians 2:1-11. Sarah Anne was the first of our friends to get married, so it was special to hear her speak words that she’s living out. One of our favorite snippets of the passage reads: “Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit, but in humility, consider others better than yourselves. Each of you should look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others.” This is actually one of the “camp verses” from the summer camp that Jack and I grew up going to (and where our dating story started), so it’s extra special to us.

Our reception site (The Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw) was a perfect fit for us. It’s a beautiful restored cotton mill with huge ceilings, exposed brick, and a riverside deck in an idyllic rural village. Jack and I had spent many summer Saturday nights at the village’s farmers’ market and concert series in Saxapahaw, and we love it there so much that we decided to move there after the wedding. Now, we get to see our reception venue every single day!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Although it turned out perfectly, the logistics of the reception venue were a bit of a challenge. The space is typically a concert venue, so there’s not a designated person to coordinate wedding details. The whole process was a labor of love, and we’re grateful for everyone who had a hand in making it happen.

Our first dance was to “If I Could Build My Whole World Around You” by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell. It has a girl part and a boy part, and Jack and I know all the words. He was a little nervous that I was going to sing the whole time instead of focusing on dancing with him!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Our cake was from Maxie B’s Bakery in Greensboro. My maid of honor (and college roommate for all four years) worked there while she was in high school, so she spoiled us by making their recipes during college. Jack and I chose layers of lemon almond buttercream, fresh strawberry buttercream, and pink lemonade. Our cake was a bit of a splurge, but it was so delicious!

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? At the end of it, you’ll be married! We tried to keep that as the focus amidst the craziness of wedding planning. Jack did such a great job in grounding us throughout the process–we did little things like going back to the spot of our first date, opening the car sunroof to see the stars while playing our favorite songs, etc. These things reminded us where we came from and why we were getting married in the first place.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. In 2002 (when we had just turned 14 and 15), a new method of communication and courtship was sweeping across teendom. After waving to me at summer camp, Jack decided that the next logical step was to communicate. After discovering my screen name, our AOL Instant Messenger dating was underway! We made it official on August 24, 2002, and Jack placed his first phone call to me later that afternoon. Our first “date” was that night at a neighbor’s birthday party. We held hands for the first time (while being showered by a golf course sprinkler) and even kissed for the first time (next to a holly bush as my mom arrived to pick me up). Over the next decade, we experienced many defining moments together: first cell phones, first cars, track meets, high school graduations, the UNC experience, and enduring long distance dating after college. The distance strengthened us and deepened our desire to make the biggest (and easiest) decision of our lives–moving from first loves to forever loves.
Tell us all about the proposal! After a friend’s wedding in Washington, DC, we headed east to the Outer Banks to check out Jockey’s Ridge State Park. After a stroll on the coast and a strategically-timed bathroom stop allowing Jack to get the ring, he led me out onto the dunes. We took in the view for a few minutes, and then Jack sat me down and gave me a homemade photo book chronicling our 10+ years as a couple. That day was our “love anniversary”–10 years from the day when he first told me he loved me. At the end of the book, Jack asked me to stand up for a hug, after which he got down on his knee and forgot everything he had practiced, only managing to say, “Berkley McRay Webster, will you marry me?” After hugging and kissing and jumping and basking in our newly-engaged glow, Jack hurried me to the car for a three-hour drive to Chapel Hill and another massive surprise at Spanky’s Restaurant. I had no idea that there would be 40+ family members and friends (from as far as California and Wisconsin) awaiting us when we walked up the stairs. So much joy!
When did y’all get married? June 7, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 230
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our day was steeped in tradition, from me wearing my mom’s veil and the groomsmen wearing traditional tuxes, to Jack’s dad and brother as the best men, to getting married in the same church and by the same pastor who married my parents. Our reception site itself, an old cotton mill, paid tribute to the South’s history, and we had Southern details like monogrammed bar runners and framed silhouettes. Our food, catered by the Saxapahaw General Store (recently featured in Garden and Gun), was local, farm-to-fork, and distinctly Southern.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? My mom was our wedding planner extraordinaire, and she found a lot of the decorative elements (old chandeliers, menu board, mirrors, etc.) at consignment shops or yard sales. Also, to get an idea for our flowers, my mom and I went to Michaels to pull silk flowers that coordinated with the bridesmaids’ dresses and color scheme. A few of the flowers that matched the dresses (freesias and thistles) weren’t available in the right color and/or would have been very expensive to order fresh, so we bought the silk versions on sale at Michaels, and the florist mixed them in. You couldn’t even tell!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We love being married! Jack works in Elon and I work in Durham, so Saxapahaw is like our little oasis in the middle. It’s so much fun to come home to each other and do the most mundane things. We’re waiting a while for animals and kids, but we did just get a couple of house plants!

Photographer: Robyn Van Dyke Photography / Videographer: Steven Ebert / Ceremony Venue: St. Mark’s Church / Reception Venue: Haw River Ballroom / Florist: Custom Floral Creations / Wedding Cake: Maxie B’s Bakery & Dessert Cafe / Caterer: Saxapahaw General Store / Rentals: American Party Rentals / Band: Reality Show Band / Paper Products: Reaves Engraving / Bride’s Gown: “Emily” by Robert Bullock / Bridal Salon: Bellissima of Salisbury / Hair Stylist: Fire Salon and Spa / Makeup Artist: Makeup By B.B. / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Adrianna Papell / Men’s Attire: T.N. Boone Tuxedos / Wedding Party Transportation: A Formal Affair Limo / Guest Transportation: The Bridge Bus

Robyn Van Dyke is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
6 Comments
  1. avatar featured: southern weddings » Robyn Van Dyke Photography Blog reply

    […] We are so overjoyed to have one of our all-time favorite weddings & couples featured on Southern Weddings today!! Their love story is bound to warm your heart and make you smile too, so be sure to check […]

  2. avatar Leigh reply

    I love that monogrammed table runner–where did she get it?!

  3. avatar Dana reply

    the reception venue is awesome! I adore their love story!

  4. avatar Nicole reply

    Beautiful! Is there anyway I could find out where the bride got her earrings? They’re exactly what I’ve been searching for!

  5. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    Great love story and a beautiful wedding! I love their “alternative first look” photo!

  6. avatar Kim @ Hello Wedding reply

    Just beautiful and their story and the love of their family and friends makes it even more beautiful. I can’t imagine how meaningful that would be to be married in the same church that you grew up in. You are making me want to move to the South!

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Happy early Valentine’s Day, my dear friends!! We’re always full of love in the office, but today we’re especially excited since this wedding is a red, pink and purple beauty.

When I first saw Valerie + Kevin’s wedding, a few thoughts popped into my mind. First, Valerie is a beautiful bride (and I immediately started singing Amy Winehouse when I heard her name). Second, how gorgeous are those mixed hues of pink dresses? Third, string lights win. Every time. You’d be surprised to know that those lovely ladies flanking Valerie aren’t her bridesmaids. With such a huge group of close friends, the bride chose to keep the wedding party to just family, but invited her girlfriends to wear their choice of dress in any shade of pink. Genius!

Valerie + Kevin’s wedding was so full of great images that we couldn’t fit them all in this post! Be sure to check out their Real Wedding Gallery for all of them.

Valerie + Kevin’s wedding was chock full of handmade charm. Family and friends created all of the decor and centerpieces. The cake tablecloth and custom pillows were made by Valerie’s mom and the sand dollar favors were collected by the flower girls and ring bearer from a nearby beach! And see that driftwood cake stand? It’s actually a mirror that was made for the bride and groom as a wedding present and now hangs in their home. So sweet, right?

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. In April of 2009, we met through a mutual friend in Atlanta, where we were both living at the time.
Describe the proposal. On Sunday evening, November 28, while I was visiting Kevin and his family in Saint Simons Island and Sea Island in Georgia, we had plans to go to dinner at The Lodge with his brother and sister-in-law. On our way to dinner, Kevin turned to go to Sea Island and I quickly asked, “Where were we going?” Kevin said that since we hadn’t had a lot of alone time over the weekend or a chance to take our ritual walk on the beach in front of his mother’s home, he thought we’d go now before dinner and enjoy the sunset. I then realized he was playing our favorite tunes on the radio, he was wearing the tie I had given him on his birthday a few days before, and the fact that we never went for our ritual walk on the beach all dressed up! I did not want to get my hopes up in case this was not the moment, though. We parked the car and walked to the beach and within a few minutes of our walk, he kneeled on one knee and proposed. It was wonderful and a beautiful evening. We then called my family back in Louisiana with the exciting news and went to dinner where all of his family gathered to celebrate the special occasion with us.
Three adjectives that describe the day are: Fun, celebration and beautiful scenery.
In what month did you get married? June
How many guests attended your wedding? 140
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: the lights over the dance floor at the outdoor reception underneath the live oaks and Spanish moss
Describe your wedding flowers: Casablanca lilies, stargazing lilies, hydrangeas, roses, peonies and snapdragons where all used in arrangements. My bouquet contained Casablanca lilies, white hydrangeas and white roses. The overall color scheme was very natural with lots of white and pops of hot pink. We put the flowers in antique tin creamers purchased at Scott’s Antique Market in Atlanta, antique Mason jars from my mother’s collection and oversized silver mint julep cups. All the flowers were arranged by friends and family.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Our gift bags included local Georgia Peanuts and homemade oatmeal raisin cookies by my mom, mason jars served as glassware for cocktails, sweet tea and fresh squeezed pink lemonade. As per the wedding tradition, I wore a silver sixpence in my shoe for good luck. Our save the dates had a piece of loose burlap monogrammed with the date on it, which carried over to the wedding day where we used burlap in the boutonnieres and center pieces of the tables. A quilt made by my grandmother and great grandmother served as a table linen at the sign-in table and antique lace from my mom’s wedding gown was used to make the ring bearer pillow. Food was served on an antique wagon that was restored by the Kevin. Additionally, the entire wedding weekend took place at Southern locations. Thursday evening, we went on a shrimp boat cruise with family and out-of-town guests that arrived early. Friday evening, the rehearsal dinner was on the lawn of Kevin’s parent’s home on Sea Island and featured crawfish etouffee and jambalaya, native food from Louisiana where the my parents live, and local seafood from the coast of Georgia. The wedding reception site was on the same property, 10 acres covered in live oaks, Spanish moss, palmetto’s and Tabby Ruins.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Our photographer, Melissa Schollaert.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Arriving to the wedding reception site with my husband in an antique 1915 Model-T Ford that my uncle owned and was driving. Then, getting out of the car and walking to the dance floor with Kevin holding my hand the entire way. As we began our first dance, the sun was setting over the river and marsh. A little while later when the sun was almost completely set, the lead singer of the band called an impromptu toast and drew the guests’ attention to the sunset and said “this looks like something in a movie scene” The timing was impeccable and just as I had envisioned.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? Having a family, learning the ways of life in the low country and sharing that with friends, and traveling together.

Photography: Melissa Schollaert Photography // Ceremony Venue: Wesley United Methodist Church // Venue: Private River Property in St. Simons Island, Georgia // Dress: Melissa Sweet via Bleu Belle Bridal // Shoes: Badgley Mischka // Bridesmaids Dresses: J.Crew // Planner: Lindsay Pitt forTOAST of the COAST by Toast Events Atlanta // Catering: Sea Palms Resort // Stationery: Evince Design // Bride’s Engagement Ring: Harlin Diamonds // Groom’s Wedding Band: Claddagh Ring // Cake: Sea Palms Resort // Rentals: Beachview Tent Rentals // Band: Ocean Street // Transportation: Historic 1015 Model T Ford

Love this wedding? Well then we recommend:
This glam St. Simons Island wedding (in three parts – here, here, and here)
This chic beach wedding, also photographed by Melissa Schollaert (here + here)
This wedding, which also had a fabulous mix of bright bridesmaid dresses!

Melissa Schollaert Photography and Toast Events are fabulous members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

nicoleyang Written with love by Nicole
12 Comments
  1. avatar Elizabeth reply

    Every detail is just gorgeous! And I love the driftwood cake stand/mirror – brilliant and beautiful:)

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  3. avatar Tim Duncan reply

    The pinks here all go together so well! It’s definitely a good pick for Valentine’s Day! ;)

  4. avatar Lindsay reply

    It was so great to relive this wedding again, I had such a blast helping my great friend with her plans, but was also able to be a guest and enjoy this perfectly southern celebration I will forever cherish!

  5. avatar Ellen reply

    The wedding was amazing with the help of so many of the Valerie and Kevin’s friends. The wedding coordinator, Lindsay Pitt of Toast of The Coast, and Melissa Schollert Photography were outstanding and FUN!

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