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Planning a wedding at a private residence can be quite stressful (thanks to the whole “starting from scratch” thing!), but boy, can they result in some of the prettiest and most personal wedding days. For Amy and Mike, there was no question of where they were going to tie the knot–the side yard of Amy’s childhood home, next to a beautiful lake. Through DIY decor, the help of Amy’s parents, and some good ol’ Southern traditions, they created a mint and gold wedding that felt intimate and personal, even with a guest list of over 200. Amy’s father had two large doors cemented into the yard to make her ceremony entrance even more special!

We’re so glad Amalie Orrange shared this pretty day with us!

Tell us all about the proposal! We had always wanted to do the swan paddle boats on Lake Eola Park in downtown Orlando, where we live. He planned a simple morning of going to the farmer’s market, followed by a quick swan boat ride, because in three years, we had still never done it. I thought nothing of it–I was just so excited he was actually making plans! In the middle of Lake Eola, he proposed. The best part was that once he paddled my blubbering self back to shore, both of our families and closest friends were all there to celebrate. It was incredible!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We were married at my childhood home in the side yard on the lake. I had lived in this home since I was born, and it is on the largest lake in Clermont, Florida. There was no question about where our wedding would be!

I walked down the aisle to the Vitamin String Quartet version of “Secrets” by One Republic. It is such a moving song, and our trio string band, The Holcomb Brothers, nailed it. My father had 10-foot doors cemented into the middle of the yard, and we waited for an entire verse of this song before they opened, building up the suspense for everyone.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? When you plan a wedding outside in Florida, you have to expect the worst: hot, humid, bugs, rain, rain, and more rain. When we planned for November, the “driest” month of the year, we still knew we wouldn’t be safe. So, a month before the wedding, we had a bourbon burying party! We buried a bottle of bourbon from Clermont, Kentucky upside down at the site of the ceremony in my parent’s yard (my mother also buried TWO more bottles later, just to be safe). Needless to say, the moment after we said “I do” on the most perfect Saturday, we opened all three bottles and passed them around to all the guests! It rained every other Saturday in November but our wedding day.

I love tulips, but tulips do not like November and they are very expensive! My florist was amazing, so she brought together all of the colors that went with our mint and gold color scheme and made an incredible bouquet full of ranunculus, dusty miller (in honor of our new last name), Queen Anne’s lace, wax flowers, and tons of greenery. To top it off, she found tulips, and it was perfection!

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: I designed the entire cake table myself. It was made from an old dresser I picked up from a consignment shop for $30. We had it stripped down, painted white with mint trim, and had a huge mirror attached that was painted sparkly gold. The entire table probably cost $60, but with cheap antique vases, candles, knick knacks from around my parents’ house, our initials on the mirror, and the sparkliest runner, it was a sight in itself. Neither of us are cake people, but we had to have a pretty one for pictures! We did white cake with raspberry filling and buttercream frosting. The cake toppers were the best–they were two little swans.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Our families were friends and business partners long before we knew the other existed. I became close friends with Mike’s sister and cousins, and even backpacked through Europe with his cousin! When Mike moved home from school, he pursued me for a few weeks, and I finally gave in. We dated for three years and were engaged for one!
When did y’all get married? November 15, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 230
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? No, we did not–I am very traditional when it comes to weddings. The build-up of not even speaking to each other for the entire wedding day made that moment when I first saw him even more “HOLY COW” than I ever could have expected. Who would have ever thought it would be him who started crying at that moment? It is something I would not trade for my life.
Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We had all of the plans to do so, but we are both so terrible about public speaking, we decided not to add one more thing to stress about that day!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! Of course! I borrowed my mom’s pearls. Mu something blue was my initials and our wedding date embroidered into my dress. My mother gave me my grandmother’s diamond ring on my wedding day as my something old. My something new was my dress!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Getting so many people into one yard and making sure it was the best wedding we could throw. My parents took the majority of that burden, so I won’t even try to take any credit!
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We made all of the decorations (except the flowers) ourselves. My father found the doors and trellis, I made the cake table and bought all of the lanterns at a resell store, and my aunt made all of our cocktail decorations from old, spray-painted wine barrels.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? I do have to say that the best money I personally spent was on my photographer and videographer. The day is over and it honestly went by so fast. The only way we keep getting to relive it and see the moments we missed are with our photos and video. I don’t care how much it costs, do not skimp on this part! I am beyond thankful for these two vendors, as they exceeded expectations beyond words!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are just starting a renovation on the house I bought before we were married. We cannot wait to be in our “new house!” It’s been 2+ months since our wedding and we still think about that day all the time. :)

Photographer: Amalie Orrange Photography / Videographer: Seltzer Films / Planner: Bonnie Dutka of Mobella Events / Venue: Private residence / Florist: Atmospheres Floral and Decor / Cake: Cut the Cake / Caterer: Arthur’s Catering / Rentals: Chair Affair / Linens: Over the Top / Dance Floor: Letz Dance Floor / Lighting: Get Lit Productions / Band: The Leonard Brothers / Ceremony Musicians: The Holcomb Brothers / Bride’s Gown: “LZ3258” by Lazaro / Hair and Makeup: Jasmine Doublette of Brides Be Beautiful / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Wedding Dress Bee / Menswear: Absolutely Fitting

marissa Written with love by Marissa
10 Comments
  1. avatar Amalie Orrange reply

    We cannot thank you enough for featuring Amy and Mike’s wedding! Such a kind and amazing couple, we were thrilled to be a part of their big day. XO~Amalie

  2. avatar Kyla Fetzner reply

    Mint is such a lovely color to include in a wedding palette! Amy and Mike did a wonderful job incorporating it in with their neutrals (the suspenders and bowtie are my favorite pops of color!).

  3. avatar Amalie Orrange reply

    Also a big thank you to my amazing associate shooter Ashley McCormick!! And Amy’s dress was from The Collection in Winter Park Florida.

  4. avatar Amy & Mike’s Orlando Wedding | Southern Weddings featured photographer » Amalie Orrange Photography Blog reply

    […] the feature on Southern Weddings |  Check out their wedding post here | See their engagement session […]

  5. avatar Emily reply

    Y’all’s ceremony spot is pretty epic, especially with those doors and that light! Just beautiful!

  6. avatar Stephanie reply

    Such a beautiful, soft, joyful wedding! The ceremony location is especially meaningful and gorgeous, and I’m obsessed with the string lights hanging over the reception!!

  7. avatar Friday Fresh Squeeze #180 – Floridian Social reply

    […] up at a lakefront home on a property as gorgeous as this one, it's only proper that you host your big Southern wedding there and treat your guests to minty […]

  8. avatar Amber Bako reply

    I absolutely love this wedding. This location is perfect. I am planning to get married in November of 2016 in Florida. I was wondering if anyone had venues similar to this in Florida? I am looking for low cost, beautiful scenery.

  9. avatar 43 Best Outdoor Wedding Entrance Ideas I love Pink reply

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  10. avatar Private Residence: A Mint and Gold Wedding – A Chair Affair, Inc. reply

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Confession: I have been wanting to see Katie and Josh’s wedding ever since I caught a sneak peek of it on Instagram, so you can imagine how excited I was when I found out that they had graciously shared their big day with Southern Weddings! There are few things more lovely than spring in North Carolina, and I love how these two embraced the natural beauty of their venue (an SW favorite, Fearrington!), while also incorporating a healthy dose of glamour and gold. While their reception was exquisite, they clearly put so much love and thought into planning their ceremony as well, and it shows in these beautiful pictures by Callie Davis of Nancy Ray Photography!

I found my wedding dress at Alexia’s Bridal in Raleigh, and it happened to be my first time shopping for a gown. I had always dreamed of wearing a Monique Lhuillier gown, and to my surprise, Alexia’s was holding a trunk show sale on the same day as my bridal appointment! The first time I tried on THE gown, I immediately fell in love with the light organza fabric and detailed rose pattern on the skirt. Finding my dress was actually the first thing checked off of my wedding to-do list!

Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! YES! The most special was my something blue: my grandmother’s sapphire diamond bracelet, gifted to her by my grandfather. All of my girl cousins have worn it on their wedding days, and it has become a family tradition. It’s our way of remembering our dear grandfather, who loved all of us unconditionally.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? We chose Fearrington because of its rustic, yet elegant, charm. I knew that the gardens would be blooming with spring flowers in May, and I had heard that Chef Bedford’s cooking was exquisite. I am originally from Northern Virginia and Josh is from Michigan, so we wanted to give our guests a little taste of classic Southern comfort.

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Make your ceremony special. Oftentimes, couples overlook planning special things for the ceremony because they figure they will only be there for 30-60 minutes. I love looking back at the pictures of our beautiful pews, chandelier, and bureau table. After all, the ceremony is the most important and intimate part of your whole wedding!

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? For the ceremony, we decided to rent old doors and white distressed pews to make the ceremony feel more church-like. I think the Fearrington Barn’s tree branch chandeliers were the icing on the cake.

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Choosing a color palette and theme. It started out rustic, but we slowly incorporated more gold tones and spring flowers. Eventually, everything came together, but for a few months, I was having a difficult time envisioning the look of the wedding. Kaitlin Holland helped us pull it all together.

Music can make or break the party–it’s worth it to splurge on a wedding band. Our guests, young and old, are still raving about how much they enjoyed a night filled with dancing!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met through mutual friends while I was a senior at East Carolina University. One of my girlfriends convinced me to go out with her to hang out with a guy she was interested in. Josh had already graduated from ECU, but was working in Greenville and happened to live at the house we were going to. Josh and I hit it off immediately–his friends always tell me that the day after Josh met me, he admitted, “I love her, I love her, and I don’t care who knows it!” We were inseparable for two weeks after meeting, until he found out that he had landed a job in San Diego. I figured we would attempt the long distance, but just assumed it wouldn’t work. The next thing I knew, we were flying out to see each other almost every other month! Josh left his job as soon as I graduated and moved back to Northern Virginia with me, even though we had only been dating for eight months.
Tell us all about the proposal! Josh planned a trip to California for us to visit his brother, who lives in Laguna Hills, and we also planned to spend a night in San Diego. Josh and I decided to go to our favorite restaurant in Ocean Beach to indulge in some of the best fish tacos we’d ever eaten. Before going into the restaurant, we took a quick walk out onto the pier nearby to take a couple of pictures, and before I knew it, Josh was on one knee and asked me to be his wife. I’m usually a difficult person to surprise, but Josh really got me, considering we didn’t even go ring shopping together. We headed into the restaurant, where I planned on calling my family to tell them the good news, but then I saw them all waiting for us inside! There wasn’t a dry eye in the house. Huge props to Josh on this one!
When did y’all get married? May 17, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 165
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? No, we decided to go the traditional route. My favorite part of any wedding is seeing the groom’s reaction the first time he sees his bride.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $75,000-$100,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We saved a lot of money when it came to the tiny details. My family is full with DIY-ers who went out of their way to help. My future sister-in-law and her mom made and canned all of the peach preserves that were given as favors, along with all of the wooden ceremony signs and chalkboard signs. My dad built the mailboxes that were used to hold the programs. Luckily, my parents own a security printing company, so any of the tags/card stock that we used for escort cards, party favors, and programs came from their printing plant!
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? The owner of Simply Put Vintage, Kaitlin Holland! My mom and I originally did not think we would need a wedding planner, but then we both started getting tied up with school and work. Kaitlin was our saving grace. My mom met her at the SPV warehouse to check out the old doors we wanted for our ceremony, and was so impressed with the collection that she asked Kaitlin to style the wedding. I was so overwhelmed with emotion when I saw the set-up of the ceremony for the first time–it was simply perfect.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? I will be graduating from UNCG with my second degree in Nutrition and Dietetics in Spring 2015 and hope to pursue a career as a registered dietitian. Josh is currently working for a start-up company as a business development manager. Kids are definitely next for us! Josh and I adore our nieces and nephews. We have been living together for almost three years now and just purchased our first home in May 2013, so we are ready to expand our family in the near future.

Photographer: Callie Davis of Nancy Ray Photography / Videographer: Innerloupe / Planner: Kaitlin Holland Creative / Venue and Catering: The Fearrington / Florist: Mary Stevens of Fearrington / Wedding Cake: Maxie B’s / Rentals: Simply Put Vintage Rentals and CE Rentals / Band: Elegance / Bride’s Gown: “1206” by Bliss by Monique Lhuillier / Paper Products: The Dandelion Patch / Bride’s Veil: Jennifer Leigh / Bride’s Crystal Sash: Monique Lhuillier / Hair and Makeup: Makeup For Your Day / Bride’s Shoes: Ann Taylor Bridal Collection / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Bella Bridesmaids / Groom’s Attire: Baroni Prive / Groomsmen Attire: Gordon’s Menswear Rentals / Pews: Carolina Rustic Rentals / Strings: Arioso Strings

Nancy Ray Photography, Simply Put Vintage Rentals, and The Dandelion Patch are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

lisa Written with love by Lisa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Loverly reply

    Every part of this wedding is absolutely stunning! We are swooning over the bride’s gown and loving the different colors and styles of the bridesmaids dresses!

  2. avatar Featured! | Nancy Ray Photography reply

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  3. avatar gorgeous ceremony set-up | Nancy Ray Photography #wedding… – Best Home Decorating Ideas reply

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  4. avatar Celebrating Southern Weddings | Nancy Ray Photography reply

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This morning I came into the office and a copy of The DIY Bride, An Affair to Remember (from the creator of the DIY Bride blog, y’all!) was on my desk! You bet I spent some time flipping through it.

It was great timing, then, to write this post! Sydney + Lucas went homemade all the way with their Front Porch Farms wedding. With family and friends surrounding and supporting them, they unleashed their creativity on the Southern details. The result is a warm gathering with the rustic details we adore. Big thanks to Cali Ashton Photography for sharing!

Can you believe that the bright flowers placed in mason jars around the wedding site were ordered from Sam’s Wholesale? They arrived fresh, pretty and ready for presentation! Though I’m always a fan of mason jars full of flowers, my favorite part of the wedding comes during the ceremony, when Sydney + Lucas made an impromptu dance floor. Read on for details!

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. Our familes’ relationship precedes ours. Our sweet grandparents have been best of friends for years and together they led the youth group and youth camps at our church when they were young parents. Fast forward many years later when I was youth pastor at our church. I needed some male volunteers for an event and I remembered Lucas and asked him if he would like to help. He accepted and we soon became good friends and bonded over our mutual love of the TV show “The Office.” Love shortly followed! Hooray!
Three adjectives that describe the day are: Joyful, breathtaking and spirit-filled!
In what month did you get married? The beautiful autumn month of October
How many guests attended your wedding? 150
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Our personalities were weaved in and out of everything. I loved toasting with the Mason Jar Wine Glasses I made.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Sweet tea, BBQ and a handmade quilt Lucas’ grandmother made for our special day that lay on a porch swing – how much more Southern can you get?
Describe your wedding flowers: We wanted simple yet beautiful flower arrangements. We ordered through Sam’s Wholesale website and were pleasantly surprised at how fresh and gorgeous they were. We threw them in mason jars, antique vases and milk jugs. Southern perfection!
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? My husband and I are very creative people and so it was a challenge harnessing that creativity and making decisions. With the help of our loved ones, we were able to unleash our creativity and showcase who we are through all of the décor and details!
What range did your wedding budget fall into? Less than $10,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? The Venue. Kathy Best at Front Porch Farms did an excellent job providing the most beautiful setting and professionalism when it came to accommodating our needs.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? During our ceremony, we had just finished the love letter portion where we put letters in a box to each other to be opened on our 25 wedding anniversary. Our acoustic musicians were playing background music during this time so instead of awkwardly waiting for them to finish, we ended up slow dancing. It was such a spontaneous moment that was so meaningful, so “us” and so special.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Unleash your creativity! Do not be afraid to be creative in how you spend your money – be thrifty and learn how to use local thrift stores for décor and details! Also, Pinterest is a wonderful place to gather your inspiration and ideas.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We LOVE creating a home and making it our sanctuary. Lucas just made me a complete bed from reclaimed barn wood – talk about how to make a Southern woman swoon! We hope to continue to grow our handmade home décor business and enjoy each other before we decide to have little ones for a few years.

Photographer: Cali Ashton Photography // Planner: Kathy Best of Front Porch Farms // Venue: Front Porch Farms // Wedding Cake Baker: Publix Bakery // Caterer: Jim N Nicks BBQ // Linens: handmade burlap table runners // Hair stylist and Makeup Artist: Amanda Morgan (615.812.7452) // Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Target // Accessories: Not Too Shabby Designs

Love this wedding? You might like these, too!
Miranda + Blake’s Front Porch Farm Engagement Party here and here
Melissa + Eric’s peach, green and gray wedding here and here.

nicoleyang Written with love by Nicole
9 Comments
  1. avatar Desiree reply

    Well, first off, I wanted to comment on the super (ha) boutonnieres ~ I have so many grooms who could just care less about them. It’s nice to give a manly punch to traditional flowers. Then, I wanted to comment on how adorable the bridesmaids wheat bouquets were & how simply and lovely the table-scapes were.

    Then…my mouth dropped when I read “less than $10,000”. From now on, in my professional career as a wedding planner, I will be referring this wedding to all my brides who complain about low budgets. I always say, “anything can be done with enough creative imagination & inventiveness”. This bride proves this point…and then some. Major kudos to her & I wish the couple many years of happy marriage!!

    ugh. Im obsessed.

  2. avatar Linda at Cedarwood Weddings reply

    We love this wedding! The bridal party attire is so unique. Great job – congrats to everyone involved.

  3. avatar Southern Weddings Magazine | Featured « Cali Ashton Photography reply

    […] Magazine for featuring Sydney & Lucas’ wedding from this past October!  Check it out here.  We love when our brides are rewarded for their […]

  4. avatar Katie reply

    LOVE the dress! Anyone know the designer?

    • avatar Sydney Hutson reply

      Katie: I’m the bride featured. My dress is Allure Bridals design # 8634 in Champagne. :)

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  6. avatar Southern Weddings Magazine | Featured » nykandcaliweddingphotography.com reply

    […] Magazine for featuring Sydney & Lucas’ wedding from this past October!  Check it out here.  We love when our brides are rewarded for their […]

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