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With cooler weather and changing leaves knocking at the door, if you weren’t already craving pumpkin everything and snuggling up for movie nights, Katherine and Weston’s Tennessee wedding will push you right over the edge! Their florist, The Enchanted Florist, brought Katherine’s vision of fall colors mixed with pinks, blush, and cream to life with stunning blooms that only made our Blue Ribbon Vendor venue, CJ’s Off the Square, even more lovely. And, those gold pumpkins at each place setting? I think I need a few for my own dining table!

We’re so happy Amy Nicole was on hand to capture this cozy fall celebration!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I imagined dress shopping would be much more difficult than it was. I found my dress during my first appointment, and it was the last dress I tried on. I had tried on about nine dresses and none really felt like “the one,” when y mother and maid of honor pulled out one more. When I tried it on, I felt like a bride, and everyone started crying!

I only had one meeting with my florist, and she brought exactly what I had shown her to life–the fall colors, the greenery, everything was perfect! I still wanted pinks, green, blush, and cream incorporated, even though it was November, and she was able to make it work.

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? At first, we did not want to do a first look, but due to the time of the ceremony, we changed our minds and did one so that there would still be light when we took pictures. I am so glad we decided to do a first look! It got out all of the nerves, and I love the pictures! Amy did such a great job capturing the emotions of the day.

I loved getting ready to walk down the aisle. There were about five minutes when it was just my dad and I, and I was able to reflect on the day and on our relationship.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? We set up corn hole for the guests and were able to have an outdoor wedding in November!

Describe your wedding cake. I wanted something simple and classic. I found a cake that I loved on Pinterest, and changed a few things to my liking. We didn’t do a grooms cake, so we made the cake four tiers, each tier in a different flavor.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. He worked at a movie theater and I worked at the Starbucks down the way. I was friends with his boss, and they would come over and get free coffee in exchange for free movie tickets :) We started hanging out more and more that summer, usually grabbing dinner or going to parties together. He finally asked me to be his girlfriend on July 1, 2009!
Tell us all about the proposal! He proposed at the same movie theater we met at! After our movie got out, we were sitting in the lobby just chatting, and I was starting to wonder why we hadn’t left yet. He then said he thought he had seen something in the hallway. When I looked down the hall, all of the movie marquees were lit up and said “Katherine, will you marry me?” I turned around and he was on one knee! It was absolutely perfect and so unexpected.
When did y’all get married? November 8, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 120
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? I lived in Memphis for about four months of our engagement and then moved to Franklin. Weston didn’t move until three months later. Planning from another city was difficult, and then planning without the groom present was difficult. We had to schedule meetings around his visits, which was tricky, but it wasn’t anything we couldn’t handle! Wedding planning went pretty smoothy overall.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We are enjoying being married. We definitely are going to start a family, but also want to take a year or two to spend time together and travel.

Photographer: Amy Nicole Photography / Planner, Venue, and Lighting: CJ’s Off the Square / Florist: The Enchanted Florist / Cake Baker and Caterer: Main Event Productions / Rentals: Southern Events Party Rentals / DJ: Jason Middleton of Premier DJs / Paper Products: Minted / Bride’s Gown: “Paz” by Augusta Jones / Bride’s Jewelry: BHLDN / Veil: Toni Federici / Hair Stylist: Leah Blanco / Makeup Artist: Lisa Johnson / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “165” by Bill Levkoff / Groom’s Attire: Black by Vera Wang

CJ’s Off the Square is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
5 Comments
  1. avatar Amy Nicole Cherry reply

    Today is SUCH a joy! I’m SO thankful for this beautiful couple to be featured!!! Thank you, thank you, thank you!!!

  2. avatar Kelsey reply

    That color scheme is to die for! Perfect for fall.

  3. avatar Tricia reply

    What a gorgeous wedding! I love all the colors and florals. Amy Nicole’s images are always so rich and vibrant! Well done!

  4. avatar Occasions In Print reply

    Love the colors used for this fall wedding! Beautiful flowers too!

  5. avatar lisa johnson reply

    i just love the vibrant colors and details of this wedding! such a lovely sweet bride and family!

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It’s always such a joy to see our Southern Bride Bloggers tie the knot, and I have to confess, I was stalking Callie‘s Instagram a little bit on Melissa and Will’s wedding day in the hopes of getting a peek at this sweet celebration! Not surprisingly, Melissa was as lovely and gracious as Southern brides come, and after reading the interview she and Will filled out together, it’s so evident that they were completely present on their wedding day. That’s our biggest hope for all of you brides–that you plan well, choose your vendors carefully, and then sit back and soak in every second of getting married! We love that that’s exactly what Melissa and Will did, and they now have so many special memories to carry with them into newlywed life and the many years to follow.

Thanks so much to our Blue Ribbon Vendor, Callie of Nancy Ray Photography, for sharing Melissa and Will’s beautiful day with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I had always dreamed about the kind of dress I would get married in. I knew I wanted lace, and something that was lightweight and very feminine. As soon as I got engaged, I started talking to a few gals who had recently gotten married and made a list of stores they recommended, one of which was Lana Addison Bridal in Cary, North Carolina. I decided to start with Lana Addison because it was a smaller boutique and would help me ease into “the search,” but it actually ended up being the first and only place my mom, mother-in-law, and I ventured to! After looking at my inspiration, we headed to a dressing room and were given two dresses to start with. After trying both on, I knew neither was for me and mentioned the idea of trying on a dress with a “Great Gatsby” feel. Our consultant said she knew just the dress! I was brought a beautiful lace number that had cap sleeves, an alluring V-neckline, and a vintage-inspired silver and gold brooch that I just adored. I put it on and didn’t want to take it off. That’s when I knew it was the one.

Will has been one of the strongest Christian influences in my life and prays with and for me every single day, ever since the very beginning of our relationship. For whatever reason, I’ve never felt as comfortable praying out loud like he does. This is something I’ve struggled with for years and knew I wanted to change, so on our wedding day, I did just that! Instead of Will and I doing a first look, we decided to pray together behind a tree, and I opened us up in prayer. I was nervous, and didn’t know if I would be able to get any words out, but as we held hands, the excitement started to heighten and I was able to enjoy those brief moments that we got to spend together with God as our focus. I was proud of myself and knew this was the perfect way for us to spend our last few moments together before becoming husband and wife.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did a mix of both. For the ceremony, we went with more traditional vows, but added our own words to make them more “us.” My favorite phrase from our vows was “through tears and laughter, sickness and health, hardship and plenty, I will love you faithfully, constantly, and prayerfully”.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? Scripture is important to Will and I and we wanted to find something that did a good job showcasing God’s intent for what a strong Christian marriage should look like. After narrowing down our choices, we selected Mark 10:6-9 and Colossians 3:12-17 to be read by one of our bridesmaids and groomsmen during our ceremony. For our homily, we asked our officiant to focus on Ephesians 5:21-33.

We held our ceremony at Dinwiddie Chapel on the Peace College campus, where I attended college when it was an all-girls school. One of our school’s requirements was to attend chapel every week, so I grew very fond of its charm, and have so many memories that were created there. It didn’t hurt that it was also bright and airy inside, which was something I definitely wanted. For our reception venue, we knew that we wanted to find a space that had a rustic feel, exposed brick, floor-to-ceiling windows, and an open floor plan that we could customize. The Cotton Room had all of the above and more. It was just what we had dreamed of!

Being born and raised in the South, I knew I wanted to have a wedding with lots of Southern details–insert mason jars, Cheerwine bottles, and plenty of wooden accents. It was important to us that all of our family and friends felt comfortable throughout the day, so we decided against having “sides” at our ceremony and asked all of our guests to sit wherever they wanted, allowing them to mingle and meet one another as soon as the festivities began. The friendly and inviting tone of the day gave it a great Southern feel. We also put a lot of thought into the menu options offered at the reception. To our surprise, the most talked-about items at our wedding were the the pimento cheese sliders with fried green tomatoes, the BBQ pork puppies, and the goat cheese smashed potatoes.

What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? We loved every vendor we had the pleasure of working with, but there are a few that specifically went above and beyond in meeting our expectations. The first was Nancy Ray Photography. Photos capture moments you want to cherish forever and Callie and her team did just that. The second is, without a doubt, my wedding coordinator, Emily King of Whiskey and White Events, combined with the whole staff at The Cotton Room. Without Emily’s help, our wedding day wouldn’t have run as smoothly as it did. The staff at The Cotton Room also blew us away with the display and setup of everything used at the reception. It was magical. They even surprised us with “a pizza pie to say goodbye” that we enjoyed after the reception!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. From Will: At the end of January 2010, I was introduced to Melissa by some mutual friends. I knew pretty quickly after talking to her that she was something special, but after spending some time getting to know each other that night, we went our separate ways. A few days later, Melissa reached out to me over Facebook, invited me to a party her friends were hosting, and the rest, as they say, is history!
Tell us all about the proposal! It was a July weekend, and we headed to the mall so Will could pick up some clothes for work. While we were at the mall, Will randomly said “Let’s go to Anthropologie so you can find a dress to wear tonight for the double date we’re going on. My treat!” After stopping at Anthro, we were headed home when Will got a “phone call” and told me he had to go into the office before our double date. About 20 minutes after Will left, one of my closest friends, Emily, arrived at my house and explained that Will had asked her to keep me company because he felt bad that he had to go into work on our date day. A few hours later, Will texted me ask if Emily could drop me off at the place where we were going to meet the other couple. We were almost at our destination when Emily pulled into a parking lot right beside Marshall Park, and in the far distance, I saw my parents and my uncle. This is the moment that I knew something was going on! My parents led me over a bridge and slowly backed away to leave me standing by myself in front of a large fountain. That’s when I spotted Will walking down a hill, looking as handsome as ever. When he finally approached me, I gave him a big hug and got a few awkward laughs out (I was nervous!), and from that point on, all I remember is Will grabbing my hands and asking me if I knew how much he loved me. All I could think about was how amazing he was for thinking through everything in great detail, and the fact he included my family meant so much to me. I said YES once he popped the question and the rest of the night was spent celebrating with our families!
When did y’all get married? June 13, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 175
Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? We actually decided against doing a first look for a few reasons, mainly because I wanted to do one with my dad instead. I’m an only child and “daddy’s little girl” so I knew it would be special and mean a lot to him to be able to spend a few moments together before the ceremony. Will also felt strongly about seeing me for the first time walking down the aisle, and we wanted to experience the anticipation and excitement of seeing each other for the first time at the altar.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Will and I invested a great deal of time and energy into staying focused on the fact that a wedding lasts just ONE day. A marriage is what lasts a lifetime. Before we were engaged, we went to premarital counseling at Forest Hill Church in Charlotte, where we learned the best ways to communicate with one another and were able to put that into practice. After we got engaged, we did counseling with Tyler Jones of Vintage Church and were able to discover each other’s top love language, had regular conversations about the things we valued, and had open discussions about the concerns, fears, and things that we were excited about when it came to being married and growing spiritually with someone.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? My mom and mother-in-law are DIY-ers through and through, and went out of their way to help Will and I cut costs on our wedding. These busy bees helped make all the signs used at the ceremony and reception, helped paint mason jars and all the items that were used as centerpieces for reception tables, and helped print and prepare our wedding programs. We were also able to save money by providing our own vases for the flowers, and we reused the altar flowers and aisle markers from our ceremony on the bridal party and cocktail tables.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? Will and I are renting a townhouse in one of our favorite neighborhoods in Charlotte. We’ve made friends with our neighbors and have enjoyed many nights walking to get ice cream and exploring the Queen City as much as possible. Recently, we’ve been brainstorming ideas of what we want to see and do during our trip to New York this November (I’ve never been!), and have started talking about celebrating our first anniversary overseas in Hong Kong. Will’s mom just moved there and we can’t wait to explore another part of the world together in 2016.

Photographer: Callie Davis of Nancy Ray Photography / Videographer: Good Earth Films / Planner: Emily King of Whiskey & White Events / Ceremony Venue: Dinwiddie Chapel / Reception Venue: The Cotton Room / Florist: MEWS Designs / Dessert Baker: The Cupcake Shoppe / Caterer: Triangle Catering / Band: The Troupers / Paper Products: Minted / Bride’s Gown: “Rita” by Amy Kuschel / Bridal Salon: Lana Addison Bridal / Bride’s Earrings: “Rennie” by Nina from Nordstrom / Hair and Makeup: Makeup by Ashley Mooney / Bride’s Shoes: “Forbes” by Nina from Nordstrom / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Style JH5307” by Jim Hjelm Occasions / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: New York Bride and Groom / Menswear: Jos A. Bank / Ties: The Tie Bar / Cake Topper: Emily Steffen Shop / Chair Signs: The Apothecary Bee / Party Favors: Rook Design Co. / Transportation: White Horse Transportation

Nancy Ray and Good Earth Films are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
8 Comments
  1. avatar Kelly reply

    So lovely! I’ve been following Melissa’s blog for a while and was so excited to finally see the pictures. I’ve heard the proposal story before but absolutely teared up again while reading it.

  2. avatar Melissa reply

    You ladies have wrecked my heart and made my morning….my week if i’m being honest! Thank you for featuring Will and I’s special day. I can’t help but smile looking back at these photos….just amazing.

  3. avatar Stephanie Scholl reply

    This entire wedding is simply stunning! I love all of the personal, meaningful, and Southern details, and you can tell just how much thought and attention to detail went into it. The florals are amazing, and I’m always a huge fan of the Cotton Room!!

  4. avatar Mary-Katherine reply

    The most beautiful wedding of a dear friend with an even more beautiful heart! I loved all the special details that they made sure to include, it all came together perfectly!

  5. avatar Melissa and Will Durham, NC Film Wedding | Nancy Ray Photography reply

    […] thanks to Southern Weddings for featuring this lovely wedding! Click here to see the full […]

  6. avatar Emily King reply

    Melissa and Will, thank you for such kind words. It was a true pleasure to work with you both. Wishing you every happiness in your life ahead.

  7. avatar Henry Gray reply

    Nice wedding party the bide look so pretty Love the colour scheme and the beautiful photographs. Gorgeous photos.

  8. avatar Celebrating Southern Weddings | Nancy Ray Photography reply

    […] and Jamie’s Real Wedding featured in the Pages of Southern Weddings Magazine and on the blog Melissa and Will’s Wedding on the SW Blog Southern Newlywed: Planning a […]

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I can’t think of a better way to unofficially kick off fall than with the gorgeous colors, cozy details, and of course, the sweet love story behind today’s wedding! After a group dinner serendipitously turned into an impromptu first date, Pamela and Greg grew inseparable. When it came time to start planning their wedding two years later, they were committed to planning first and foremost for their marriage–they attended premarital counseling, poured their hearts into writing their own vows (be sure to read about them below!), and made sure that each detail of their wedding truly reflected their relationship. I loved reading Pamela’s answers to our interview questions just as much as I enjoyed admiring their gorgeous Texas celebration!

Thank you so much to our Blue Ribbon Vendor Feather & Twine for sharing this gorgeous day with us!

The first day I went wedding dress shopping was actually super stressful. I brought six people with me, and as much as I loved having everyone there, shopping with that many people was overwhelming, to say the least. We went to three dress shops, and by the end of the day, I couldn’t even remember what I had tried on. Needless to say, I went home empty-handed and a little disappointed. I thank my lucky stars that my sister was in town for the whole weekend and wanted to go antique shopping the next day…but neither of us had realized that our favorite antique shops were closed on Sundays. All dolled up and in the mood to shop, we decided we would stop by a local bridal salon we had not been to yet, just the two of us. This pit stop led to the dress of my dreams!

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? Knowing the pros and cons of both sides, Greg and I decided to go for it and do a first look so that we could get all of the pictures we were dreaming of! My biggest fear about not doing a first look was that we wouldn’t have time to get all of the photos that we had envisioned without keeping our guests waiting too long (every host and hostess knows to keep their sweet guests in mind). Looking back, I am so thankful that we chose to do our first look! It allowed us to get all of our cherished photos without having to rush, and both our first look and our ceremony were so sweet and romantic. Greg cried tears of joy during both, which made me so happy!

Writing our own vows was something that was so special to us. In a day when so many people get married without considering that it is for life, and not just with the mindset that if it doesn’t work, they can get divorced, we wanted the beginning of our marriage and the words that we said to each other on our wedding day to be truly genuine. My favorite line of Greg’s vows was when he vowed to “be the best man he could be” for me, because I love that we help to make each other better people than who we were before we met.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We did a very simple, ivory, four-tiered cake with a pearl trim on each tier and an “M” on the center tier. The cake was surrounded by greenery on the base and bright blooms as the topper. As an additional dessert, we put mini pies at each place setting as the place cards, alternating peach pie for Greg since he is from Georgia and pecan pie for me since I am from Texas. These pies were one of our favorite details!

The moment we walked into the Milestone, we knew it was the perfect Southern venue for us! I have always dreamed of getting married at an old plantation, and the Milestone had all of the gorgeous details of a Southern plantation, combined with modern, new amenities. Before I even walked out of the building, I remember turning to Greg and saying, “This is the perfect place!”

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Be patient and plan your marriage together while planning your wedding. After the celebration and party is over, you are committed to each other forever, and that should be the most joyous part of your wedding! Make sure to talk about your goals and expectations before your wedding so that you can make sure your ideals line up.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. After being friends for almost a year, we had plans to go out to dinner with a group of mutual friends. At the last minute, everyone canceled except for Greg and I, so we had an impromptu first date. From then on, we were inseparable! We dated for two years before getting engaged, and we got married a year and a half later.
Tell us all about the proposal! After Greg took me back to the restaurant where we had our first date for a wonderful dinner, we took a stroll down the Woodlands Waterway. We were looking at the Christmas lights as they were going up and singing and dancing to the Waterway tunes. Greg twirled me, and when I turned around, he was down on one knee!
When did y’all get married? March 15, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 95
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. One of my movies of all time is P.S. I Love You–I love the story line and the way their love almost makes time stop. The music is something that has always made me swoon, and when I thought of music for our ceremony, we could not think of anything better than music from that soundtrack. As for our first dance, we choose Ed Sheeran’s “Thinking Out Loud.” Even though it is a newer, trendy song, we actually changed the song we had already picked for it–we were so in love with the song and how perfectly it reflected how we felt, we had to use it!
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our favorite detail of our wedding would have to be the garden games we set up on the back lawn. Custom corn hole boards, croquet, and bocce ball were the perfect addition to our big day. Greg and I are not particularly big dancers, so we wanted to have a fun activity set up that was more us.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? It was very important to us to have a marriage more beautiful than our wedding. We went through marriage counseling with our officiant and talked about our current and future goals for ourselves, both personally and as a couple. Learning patience and compromise, as well as learning that God would need to be the focal point of our marriage, we strengthened our love for each other.
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? Since our ceremony and reception were in the same place, we decided to save money on our floral budget by using our bridesmaid bouquets as half of our reception centerpieces. As soon as the bridesmaids walked out of the ceremony, our wedding coordinator seamlessly slipped five of their bouquets into empty vases before our guests ever entered the reception. We used the the sixth bouquet as my toss bouquet. This easy repurposing saved us over $500.
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? The next step in our marriage is to continue merging our lives and families together while focusing on our careers and keeping God at the center of our marriage. In a few years, we would like to start our family and buy our first house together.

Photographer and Videographer: Feather & Twine Photography / Venue and Caterer: The Milestone / Florals: The Southern Table / Wedding Cake: Candy Haven Cakes / Pie Baker: Mighty Sweet Mini Pies / Linens: House of Hough / DJ: Melodies & Memories / Paper Products: Love Vs. Design / Minted / Paper Source / Bridal Salon: Brickhouse Bridal / Jewelry: Sam Moon / Hair and Makeup: Natalia Issa / Bride’s Shoes: Anne Klein / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Blouson Dress” in Taupe Pink by Adrianna Papell / Menswear: “Black” by Vera Wang at Men’s Wearhouse / Officiant: David Williams

Feather & Twine is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
3 Comments
  1. avatar Alexandra Gipson reply

    I feel so incredibly blessed to of had the opportunity to be apart of the most amazing day in one of my very, very best friends lives! I can’t wait to be there to make many more memories with both her and Greg!

  2. avatar Maxine reply

    Thank you for featuring, SW! Great couple and a great day!

  3. avatar Dana reply

    love the floral centerpieces!

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