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Emily said I was going to love this wedding, and boy was she right! Lauren + Justin’s Texas celebration makes my preppy, fashion-y, Southern heart skip a few beats! First, the color palette is ballet pink and navy. Score! There’s a big ol’ monogram. Double score! And last, but most certainly not least, there is Lauren’s incredible style! Yes, it’s all encompassing. From the fab-u-lous blush pink fascinator she rocked, to the navy + white striped ribbon tied in a perfect bow around her bouquet to her adorable getaway dress. Absolute home run! Oh yeah, and there are mini pecan pies!

I simply cannot forget to send big SW hugs to Brett Heidbrecht who captured their big day, and to Grit+Gold for creating such a beautiful event.

Oh Lauren, I must admit I am a bit jealous of that fascinator!

Oh man. I felt like I tried on and looked at so many wedding dresses. Everyone kept telling me that I’d have some magical feeling when I tried on “the one” and I just wasn’t getting it. Finally, I was just about to buy a “just okay” dress mostly because I was sick of trying them on. My mom pleaded with me to come to Dallas and try some on for her before I made any decisions, so I did. Mother’s intuition was right because I found THE dress at the first store we went to in Dallas! I love the elegance and the Southern feel to it! I also love the blush pink sash. I wish I could wear it again! I also purchased a short white Nicole Miller departure dress. Justin’s parents held us a second reception in Kansas City in August where I got to where the Nicole Miller dress again!

One of our favorite details was the venue. The Hall of State is a stunning museum of Texas history located on the State Fairgrounds in Dallas. I have never missed a fair ever since I was born and so I have been into the Hall of State many times. When my mom and dad would take me there to see the exhibits, they would always tell me that they could see me getting married there, even when I was a little girl! I wasn’t even sure if they did weddings, but as soon as I got engaged it was one of the first venues that I wanted to check out. It was just perfect! Justin loved it because it is directly located behind the original Cotton Bowl where he had attended many Kansas State football games as a kid. The Hall of State was and is such a special place to us and our family. Another special detail was our getaway car! That truck belonged to my great grandfather and is actually the truck that my dad was taken home from the hospital in! A couple of years ago, my dad tracked it down and restored it. I was glad he let us use it for the big day.

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We decided not to do a first look and I am so glad we didn’t! If you ask Justin what his favorite part of the wedding day was, it was when the curtain opened and we saw each other as I walked down the aisle to a violin version of, “Come Thou Fount.” His face was unforgettable, he was close to crying and I just couldn’t stop giggling I was so excited and nervous!
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? 2 Corinthians 5:14-21. The message was very special, it talked about how we no longer live for ourselves but for Jesus Christ because he died for our sins and that sacrificial love is what compels our marriage and every aspect of our lives. Jesus is what holds us and everything together.

Y’all know I about leapt right out of my chair when I saw their “guest book”! Oh my heavens, this is pure perfection in my book! And can Lauren be any cuter in that image above? Her smile is contagious!

Now let’s pause and acknowledge this amazing cake! Navy blue stripes + a ballet pink bow? Yes, please!

Southern touches could be seen throughout, from the pecan pies to the silver sets we used as centerpieces and in one very cool Southern vintage Chevy! Also, our signature drink was an Arnold Palmer. The whole wedding had a Southern preppy feel. I love stripes and they were everywhere! My dress also had a Southern belle feel to it, and instead of a traditional veil, I wore a blush pink fascinator. It was quite a statement!

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. We met when I was a junior at the University of Arkansas. Justin had just graduated from Kansas State University and moved to Arkansas to be on staff with a campus ministry I was involved with as a student. Our first meeting seemed pretty typical, except for the fact that we both walked away with secret crushes on each other! We would see each other and talk at ministry events and we always just seemed to click. I respected and looked up to Justin so much that I thought he was way out of my league. I would even suggest to my older girl friends that they should get to know him because I just never thought he’d be interested in me! I guess I was very wrong because in the fall of my senior year, Justin called me and asked if he could come by my sorority house where I lived to ask me a question. I was praying he would ask me on a date! When he showed on my front door step he just said, “I’m just gonna cut to the chase. I want to take you on a date.” All I could say was, “Okay.” He then asked if I would go on a date with him that Friday and I of course answered YES! It turns out, he had wanted to ask me out for the past six months but had to wait because I had gone out of the country to India that summer! After two dates, we both had to go home for winter break, me to Dallas and he to Kansas City. I didn’t really know when I’d see him next or where we were at but I knew I really liked him. My dad told me when I got home I had to go to a friend of the family’s Christmas cocktail party. My little sister and I were getting ready together and she was taking way too long. I kept badgering her and finally she just said, “Instead of bugging me about being late, how about you go get me a glass of water from the kitchen?” When I went to the kitchen, all dressed up for the party, Justin was standing there waiting for me! I was shocked! He told me there was no Christmas party and that he had planned it all out so that he could take me out that night and surprise me! That night, he asked me to be his girlfriend and then a week later he asked me to come to Kansas City to meet his family. I guess you could say things moved pretty fast, because we got engaged only three months after our first date!
Describe the proposal. It was the Friday before we were about to leave on a Spring Break trip with four of our best friends. We were planning on driving all the way to New York City. Justin asked me if he and I could go out to dinner together that night, but I just thought it was a normal date. We went out to dinner and in the middle of it, his phone rang… and he answered it! Honestly, I was kind of annoyed, he usually never answers his phone during dinner! When he hung up, he said that it was his friend Bo and that he had accidentally left his condo unlocked and had already left for Spring Break. He asked if we could go lock it for him, to which I said, “Sure.” Justin then paid the check and went to the bathroom for like ten minutes! Then I was really confused. I thought he was sick, but actually he was in the bathroom practicing what he was going to say! When we got to the condo, Justin played it cool and told me we should check out the balcony. When he opened the door, there was a beautiful view of the entire city and when I looked down at my feet, there were pink flowers and candles everywhere! All I could say was, “What?” Justin tried to guide me along the path and I just started shaking. At the end of the path there were pictures of us and a bench and more flowers — it was breath-taking. We sat down on the bench and Justin talked to me for a while (because I was speechless). He then told me he loved me for the first time and got down on one knee and proposed. Then we shared our first kiss! When we back to his house, there was big surprise party of all of our friends and family! Best day ever.
In what month did you get married? July
How many guests attended your wedding? 215
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. My favorite song we used was when we exited the ceremony to “Love On Top” by Beyonce! I LOVE Beyonce and was so excited to incorporate a little sass into the ceremony! I also loved when all of my Pi Beta Phi sisters got in a circle and sang the “Pi Phi Miss” song to me!
Describe your wedding flowers: All pale pink! I don’t know much about flowers so I just had to trust my florist and she did GREAT! They were very beautiful!
Describe your wedding cake or dessert: The cake was great and looked so cute, but the real crowd pleaser was the pecan pies as the groom’s cake! The funny thing is, I am actually allergic to pecans but pecan pie is Justin’s favorite. That was one dessert we weren’t feeding each other on the wedding day.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Probably time. We only had a four month engagement, which sometimes means compromising. But it is completely doable! I had everything I wanted and, for the most part, it was a stress-free process! Mostly because my mom and my coordinator were so awesome.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-50,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? A planner. I couldn’t have done it without Lottie!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? I loved our exit! My mom made these really cool ribbon wands for everyone to wave and it just looked awesome! Running through them to the truck holding Justin’s hand was so fun, I was on cloud nine! Starting that old truck was also pretty memorable. I think we almost ran over our photographer. (Sorry Brett!)
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Just take it one thing at a time and don’t be afraid to ask for help!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? We are currently working for a student ministry at the University of Arkansas for the next year and then we will be moving to the East Coast where Justin will be working for a financial sales firm. We are both excited and maybe even a little scared about this huge next step, but are so happy to be doing it together!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
40 Comments
  1. avatar Lisa reply

    I am not even going to try to pick a favorite detail to comment about–I love everything!!

  2. avatar AshleyHH reply

    Are the bridesmaids dresses anthro or just the accessories? I love those dresses!

  3. avatar Corinna Hoffman reply

    Wowww, the venue is beautiful, and I’m loving the bride’s wedding dress! Her bridesmaids dresses are awesome too! :)

  4. avatar Reggie Campbell reply

    Brett, you killed this one dude… and that venue is really, really sick! Good stuff man!

  5. avatar Caitlin {Bayside bride} reply

    The venue is stunning! The cake looks so delicious too!

  6. avatar Marcelle reply

    Where did you get the monogram for your guestbook??

  7. avatar Dress Envy – reply

    […] This gorgeous shot is by Brett Heidebrecht Photography, and you can find lots more from the wedding on Southern Weddings! […]

  8. avatar Brittany Kelland reply

    I LOVE the navy blue stripes mixed with the light pink. It’s such a pretty combination!

  9. avatar B. Garcia reply

    Could you please let me know where you ordered this unique guest book? Or where i can find something similar?

  10. avatar Lottie Fowler reply

    Thanks for the love! We had a blast with this couple! Sweetest ever!!

  11. avatar Hawaii Wedding Planner reply

    Absolutely gorgeous wedding!! The monogram guestbook is a fabulous idea! A definite must share with my Hawaii brides.

  12. avatar Gail from OliverINK Etsy reply

    Love the navy with the pink. A nice way to mix masculine with feminine.

  13. avatar 2013 Wedding Trends: Prints reply

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  14. avatar Wedding Veil Inspiration | From Madi to M.R.S. reply

    […] that fascinators are stinkin’ awesome (like the AMAZING one shown below that was worn in a recent Southern Weddings post)….but I have to say, sometimes it just doesn’t get prettier than a bride in a gorgeous […]

  15. avatar jenny reply

    LOVE this wedding post! every detail was absolutely perfect! I only wish I had done the MONOGRAM :) what a GREAT idea to use it as a guest book! I will have to start telling my customers about your wedding and how you incorporated the monogram into the wedding :)

  16. avatar Decorazioni per sedie reply

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  17. avatar Wedding and Event News…. the blog » Real Wedding Wednesday { Texas Hall of State } reply

    […] I am in complete awe at the grandeur of this venue! But they do say that everything’s bigger in Texas This gorgeous navy blue and pink inspired event was held at the Texas Hall of State and featured all sorts of southern inspiration {check out their mini pecan pies}! […]

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    […] Photo by: Brett Heidebrecht Photography on Southern Weddings via Lover.ly […]

  20. avatar Alyssa reply

    The Texas hall wedding with the carved guestbook was awesome. How do I go about doing that?

  21. avatar Allison reply

    Where is this stunning fascinator from?

  22. avatar Wedding Inspirations: Beachy + Nautical – From This Day Forward Weddings reply

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  27. avatar Color Series #7 : Navy + Blush + White | Cherryblossoms and Faeriewings reply

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  28. avatar Color Series #7 : Navy + Blush + White | crazyforus reply

    […] photo source (from top left) : Wedding bouquet, Gold blue sapphire earrings, Bridesmaids in navy blue,Navy ribbon on wedding dress, Wedding cake, Nautical tablescape […]

  29. avatar Darkest Blues & Shades Of Pink | Wedding Inspiration – Wedding Inspiration & Ideas | UK Wedding Blog: Want That Wedding – Wedding Inspiration & Ideas | UK Wedding Blog: Want That Wedding reply

    […] credits | navy, pink and gold wedding stationery: photography by jessica burke photography | navy, pink and gold table setting, photography by brett heidebrecht | navy, pink and gold floral bouquet, photography by brett […]

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  32. avatar Sarah Beth reply

    I love the color scheme! I’m planning my own wedding using the same colors. I’ve been looking for navy striped table runner that don’t look nautical…. In love with these! Can you give me any tips?

  33. avatar Bruiloft Inspiratie | Bruidsjurk inspiratie reply

    […] Fotograaf: Brett Heidebrecht via Southern Weddings […]

  34. avatar Nautical Wedding Inspiration reply

    […] Whether you are getting married on the beach or a seaside venue, here are some ideas on how to create a beautiful, nautical-themed atmosphere for your wedding ceremony and reception! […]

  35. avatar Joyce Sampson reply

    I fell in love with the couples initials where the guests sign as a guest book. My grandson’s wedding is in July. Where can I purchase? Love this idea. Please advise. Thank you so much.

  36. avatar EWI 2017 Trendy New Grey Wedding Invitations with Matched Color Ideas – Elegantweddinginvites.com Blog reply

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When I took my first peak at Nicole + Rob’s wedding images, I was completly taken with Nicole’s gor-geous Olia Zavozina deep scoop-back gown. For a self-proclaimed tom boy, this girl sure cleans up nicely! Beyond the stunning gown, Nicole + Rob’s big day was full of lovely Southern details. My favorite has to be the old refurbished church pews at the ceremony – y’all know I’m a sucker for outdoor Cathedrals, and adding in the Tennessee rolling hills. I think I might need to rework my renewal plans!

The dress was my first purchase. Two of my sorority sisters were visiting and wanted to go dress shopping. It was only a few weeks after we got engaged, so the thought of trying on wedding dresses felt slightly overwhelming. After two appointments, I didn’t really like anything and disliked the process even more. It just felt kind of fake and forced (I should note I’m a self-proclaimed tom boy so this didn’t surprise me). While heading to dinner, we passed a new bridal store, and the light was still on. My friends flocked to the window to peak inside and the door opened. It was the designer, Olia Zavozina. She told us her store was set to open the following month, but if I wanted, she would allow me to come in the next day. I did and fell in love with the first dress I tried on. Talk about fate!

Tom boy? Um, I’d have to go with complete knockout! Nicole sure knows how to rock the glam look!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? I went back and forth on this. I think every girl (or most girls) wants to see her husband-to-be’s expression as she walks down the aisle. Ultimately, we both decided to do a first look. It was great because this moment was not only a special moment we shared together, privately, but we were able to take all of our pictures before the wedding to maximize time with our out of town guests post-ceremony. It was perfect.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? My longtime friend Melissa read from The Equality of Woman and Man. “The Lord made woman and man to abide with each other in the closest companionship, and to be even as a single soul. They are two helpmates, two intimate friends, who should be concerned about the welfare of each other. If they live thus, they will pass through this world with perfect contentment, bliss, and peace of heart, and become the object of divine grace and favor in the Kingdom of heaven. Strive, then, to abide, heart and soul, with each other as two doves in the nest, for this is to be blessed in both worlds.”

It was important to us to have vows that sounded like us. I’m a bit of a research geek, so I had a ton of fun pulling verses and copy from varying sources. My favorite part of our vows was actually a line towards the end that was something I told the pastor when he asked me what my vision was for our marriage. I told him, “As I look to the life that we will build together, I hope that we will continue to push each other towards the best versions of ourselves.” It was a nice touch to our vows that he took from our one-on-one conversations.

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? That’s tough, as you would imagine. The more sentimental memory would be Rob and I walking down the hill after the ceremony. We were both so relieved for it to be over (it was kind of stressful!) and just take in the scenery of the Tennessee rolling hills. The more fun memory was a dance off between Rob and me to Salt n Pepa’s “Push It.” That happened unplanned, and it was fantastic. Rob did his classic butter churn dance move, sans his shirt.

My bouquet was a mix of white peonies, white cushions, orchids and green hypericum berries throughout. The bridesmaids bouquets had white hydrangeas with green hypericum berries, Robert had a green mini cym with an orchid and white status boutonnieres and the groomsmen had green berries. Our tables had spyders, cushion berries, million star and Queen Anne’s and our outside ceremony alter had white hydrangeas at the top.

We saw the style of our wedding as being crisp, clean and classic with a little rustic feel (after all, it was on a farm). Our color palette was white, navy and Kelly green. We had old refurbished church pews at the ceremony site with the Tennessee rolling hills overlooking the farm; there were two barns with bars alongside a gorgeous backyard setting where guests were seated. Our specialty drinks were Jack Daniel whiskey and coke and vodka and tea. Guests enjoyed family-style BBQ that included pulled chicken, beef brisket, mac-n-cheese, squash casserole, green beans and corn bread and honey butter. We also had old quilts that adorned the seats in one of the barns and a classically chic chandelier.

Describe your wedding cake or dessert: We had a two-layer buttermilk cake with chocolate filling and white icing on the outside, and cupcakes in triple chocolate, coconut cream, red velvet, vanilla and white chocolate.

How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. Rob and I were introduced through our mutual friend, Jennifer. Jen and I work together, and she had mentioned that she thought her neighbor and I would hit it off. She described Rob as tall, handsome, athletic and polite. He had a good job in investment management and was from Oxford, Mississippi. Who could turn that down?! Our first date was during restaurant week on a snowy night in January. Oddly enough, we didn’t initially hit it off as one might think! Looking back, I think it was first date nerves and the restaurant wasn’t really our scene. After some encouragement from Jen, we both agreed to give it another shot. Fast forward a few days to our second date. Rob took me to a local sports bar to watch the NFL playoffs. We were able to relax, banter and watch some good ole’ fashion football. Suffice to say we hit it off immediately. We realized we had a lot in common: An affinity for SEC sports (Go Gators), the Giants (he likes Eli, I love NYC), a Christian upbringing, running, dogs, music and a sarcastic sense of humor. Not to mention I found Rob incredibly good looking. After what was an infinitely more successful date, we were inseparable.
Describe the proposal. We decided to take a trip to Rosemary Beach in the Spring. It was our first night there and Rob planned a dinner at a swanky restaurant. We biked around most of the day and as we headed back to our condo, Rob suggested going for a walk on the beach before dinner. We showered and got dressed, and as we stepped out on the beach it started to torrentially downpour. We went back inside and our electricity went out! I laughed and suggested we just head to the restaurant early for a drink. Rob sat down on the couch and motioned for me to join him. He pulled out a four-page letter and started to read it to me. What he was reading aloud didn’t really sink at first, but I quickly realized it was a letter he wrote to my mother. He went into detail about how he felt about me; that even after only four months, he knew that that I was what he had waited his whole life for; that I was the love of his life and that he would call her on Saturday to talk through his intentions and address any questions or concerns she had. My father passed away from cancer in 2004, so Rob knew that my mother’s blessing meant everything to me. The thought to write her a letter and give her time to process everything before he called was something you just didn’t hear about much. It was unique…but perhaps that’s just how they do it here in the South. He called my mother that Saturday and after some assurances Rob gave her, she wholeheartedly gave her blessing. Before she hung up, she just said, “Nikki’s father would have wanted me to say this; but please just please take care of our baby girl.” Rob went on to tell me that the day my engagement ring arrived, my mother called him and asked if the ring came in. It caught Rob off guard, since the ring had arrived a couple days before it was expected. When Rob told my mom that the ring arrived that morning, she simply replied, “I knew it. Today is the day that Nikki’s dad and I got married!” At this point, tears were streaming down my face. Rob got down on one knee and asked me to spend the rest of my life with him — to which I more than happily obliged.
In what month did you get married? April 2012
How many guests attended your wedding? About 90 guests total
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. We had a string trio play during the ceremony. During the wedding party processional, they played U2’s “Beautiful Day” and Coldplay’s “The Scientist.” As I walked down the aisle, they played the more traditional Canon in D. During the recessional, the played Muse’s “Starlight.” We took dance lessons for 10 weeks to prepare for our first dance. We learned the rumba to Ray Lamontagne’s “You are the Best Thing.” No one knew we had a choreographed first dance, so it was a fun surprise for everyone and we looked great. It was a blast.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The chic chandelier over the bar in the barn behind an old mirror that listed our specialty drinks.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Being patient. I’m a perfectionist and planner by trade (I work in advertising), so it was tough for me to let go and trust that my wedding coordinator and venue would take care of everything. It was a lesson in patience, for sure.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Hands down my photographer. Being in advertising, I know what good photography can do for the end product. It was important to me that our photographer embodied a photo-documentary style. I really disliked wedding photos that looked overly staged. Without question, I knew I wanted Leslee Mitchell.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Have faith that everything will work out, and even if something happens unexpected on your wedding day – the guests likely won’t even know. So enjoy it and take it all in, because the day itself goes by in a blink.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? House hunting, travel and beginning talks of children. More planning!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
3 Comments
  1. avatar Andre Blais reply

    What a beautiful wedding! Gorgeous photography also! Thanks for sharing!

  2. avatar Iceni reply

    Fabulous article. Love the rustic looks the bride & groom chose, and Nicole looked amazing in her gown. Fab sparklers to finish of the night.

  3. avatar kaitlyn t pham reply

    Hi! Nicole I was wondering what the name of your dress is from – I just recently got one from Olia and it looks like that as well but can’t seem to find the name. thanks

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