I have a soft spot for Texas weddings, and when the bride and groom are fellow University of Texas alumni, I can’t resist calling dibs on writing their wedding post! Brianna and Jim met at the Forty Acres, and after years of long-distance, they chose two very special venues in Brianna’s hometown for their winter wedding. Their celebration was classic, lovely, stylish (especially Brianna’s “Carrie Bradshaw-esque” dress!), and Southern–the focus on hospitality was undeniable, and I guarantee you that every SW gal is currently wishing we could’ve helped ourselves to their biscuit bar!
Thank you so much to Elisabeth Carol for sharing Brianna and Jim’s lovely day with us!
I borrowed my Granny Pehl’s wedding ring, just as my cousins before me have. I wore it on my right hand, and it was so special to have a piece of family history so close to me on the big day. My something old was my mother’s ring bearer pillow with a piece of my Meme’s lace sewn onto it. My something blue was my new monogram that we tied on my bouquet. I love how it pops in pictures, and it was fun getting to incorporate my new monogram into the wedding! My new was a pair of gold Manolo Blahnik pumps. To go with my Carrie Bradshaw-esque dress, I needed some dream shoes. I was under budget with my dress, so I was able to splurge on these beauties!
Tell us about finding your wedding dress. Two weekends after the engagement, my mom, sister, and I headed to San Antonio to shop! I was about to start nursing school and wasn’t sure how much time I was going to have to get wedding items taken care of. I had always wanted to be married in Vera Wang and knew that her White collection at David’s Bridal was going to help make that dream a reality. I tried on almost all of her gowns, and when I put the last one on, I just knew this was the dress that I was going to marry Jim in. The dress was a little classic, a little couture, and a little Carrie Bradshaw.
One of my fondest childhood memories is being a train bearer in my cousin’s wedding, waiting in the entry with her before she walked down the aisle. She was nervous and excited, and there was an energy in the room that I will never forget. I knew that I wanted that moment with Jim. I wanted to see him for the first time when the church doors opened.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: There are so many! We enjoyed every moment and detail of our day. I will say that the “The Washecheks” sign that hung above the sweetheart table made my heart skip a beat every time that I looked at it. It was such a sweet reminder of the new family that Jim and I were starting, and my new last name!
When I first met with my florist, I told her that I wanted Southern elegance with a feel of the Texas Hill Country, and I think that she nailed it. We went with classic white blooms, greenery, and mixed metals, from mercury glass to julep cups. There were three different centerpieces for the guest tables and a gorgeous garland swag that framed the sweetheart table. For the bouquets, I knew that I wanted something timeless, and Sprout gave me just that. She mixed white ranunculus, peonies, and roses with small punctuations of greens. It was heavenly!
Jim and I chose to dance to “I Won’t Give Up” by Jason Mraz. Throughout our relationship, this song would play on the radio in times that we needed a small reminder about our love and commitment, and it highlights the ideals that Jim and I have for our marriage. That night, the lyrics served as a promise to one another that no matter what, we won’t give up on each other–our marriage will be for a lifetime.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Jim and I stressed the importance of Southern hospitality. My parents were amazing hosts and welcomed all of our friends and out-of-town guests with open arms, driving them around to see the sights, setting up tours of local attractions, and making dinner recommendations. We incorporated Southern spirits (Southern Comfort and Maker’s Mark bourbon) and used mint julep cups for florals and bar accoutrement. We served shrimp and grits, fried quail and waffles, and a biscuit bar, among other Southern favorites, and we highlighted the importance of family tradition. Jim and I are both lucky to come from a background of strong, lifelong marriages, so we displayed pictures from our parents and grandparents’ weddings, along with the date that they were married. 2014 was a special year, with my parents married 30 years and my grandparents 60 years, so it was important for us to celebrate that!
How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Jim and I met my first week of college at The University of Texas at Austin when he was a senior and I was a freshman. I saw him from across the room talking to a mutual friend and knew that I had to meet him! The friend introduced us and we spent the night sitting on a couch in the middle of the room, dressed in neon rave gear, talking about everything under the sun. Jim moved to the Dallas/Fort Worth area after he graduated and we began our four-year long distance relationship. Let’s just say, we know all of the best stops between Austin and Dallas! (We recommend the Czech Stop for kolaches during any road trip!)
Tell us all about the proposal! It was Easter weekend during my senior year at UT. Jim had explained that he couldn’t come to Fredericksburg (my hometown) for Easter and that he had a special gift for me instead. That Friday, my brother, mom, and I drove out to our family ranch to get extra chairs and tables for Easter. I saw my sister as we drove up to the ranch and was immediately confused that she was home from college and didn’t go home first! I walked inside and found a beautiful Easter basket and flowers with a card that read “Bri.” I immediately thought, “Oh! He sent a gift with Baleigh!” I opened the card and found out that my real surprise was waiting outside. As I walked down the steps, Jim walked up the hill toward me. Shocked, I froze, while Jim walked up, got on one knee, and asked me to be his wife! I had to ask him afterwards what he said exactly, because I was shocked, crying, and overwhelmed with joy.
When did y’all get married? December 13, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 150
What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? Jim and I were married in the church that I have attended my entire life. I was baptized there, went to school there, performed almost every part in the Christmas pageant (from baby Jesus to Mary) there, and attended Sunday mass regularly with my family. The reception was held at the Nimitz Naval History Museum. This museum meant the world to my late grandfather, Ollie, a former Navy sailor. He was on the board that commissioned the museum, was present at the opening ceremony, and is now honored on a plaque inside. Being from a small town, every place holds a memory and strong meaning. I love that I was able to honor my family and our history in the town of Fredericksburg during our wedding.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? Jim and I were married in the Catholic Church, although Jim is not a Catholic. Throughout the process of preparing to be married in the Church, we had many opportunities to talk about our ideals, dreams, and hopes for our marriage. Our favorite prep activity was an engagement retreat that we went on. We spent the weekend focusing on laying the foundation for our marriage and making our relationship stronger. We left the weekend feeling strong in our relationship and confident in starting our marriage.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We decided early on that the cakes that I dreamed of were not in our budget. Our baker actually made our wedding cakes out of styrofoam for display, and then had cut sheet cakes in every flavor that were served as we “cut” the cake! It was the perfect way to cut cost!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Jim, Praline, and I are currently living in Fort Worth! We just moved into a new house, I just started a job as a neonatal intensive care nurse, and Jim is a senior engineer at a power marketing firm. We are looking forward to our life settling down, having visits from our family and friends, and going on frequent movie dates at our favorite theater!
Photographer: Elisabeth Carol Photography / Videographer: Southern Charm Films / Ceremony Venue: St. Mary’s Catholic Church / Reception Venue: The Nimitz / Florist: Sprout Floral and Event Design / Cake Baker: Sophie’s Choice Bakery / Caterer: Cartewheels Catering / Rentals: Hill Country Event Rentals / DJ: Altared Weddings / Die-Cut Details: NarWall / Invitations: Veronica Foley / Envelope Calligraphy: Design Roots / Detail Calligraphy: Charlie Whiskey / Napkins and Stir Sticks: For Your Party / Bride’s Gown: White by Vera Wang / Bridal Salon and Veil: David’s Bridal / Hair Stylist: Jamie Laratta / Makeup Artist: Ginny Smith / Bride’s Shoes: Manolo Blahnik / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Amsale in Mallard / Bridesmaid Dress Salon: Bella Bridesmaids Dallas / Bridesmaid Earrings: “Carmella Stud” in Pearl by Kendra Scott / Menswear: Black by Vera Wang / Coordinator: Jasper Eisenberg
Elisabeth Carol is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!