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Hallie (who is an actual cowgirl, y’all!) always knew she wanted to get married at her family’s farm, but after saying “yes” to Griffin’s heartfelt proposal came all of the logistics! They quickly realized that their goal of having the whole wedding at this meaningful property was not in the cards. As a compromise, they gathered their closest loved ones there for the ceremony and a cake and champagne toast, then headed to The Haw River Ballroom for their reception. Hallie’s parents have been regulars at the Saxapahaw General Store restaurant since they opened, so even though it wasn’t home, the ballroom already held plenty of family memories. This self-proclaimed sentimental couple loved celebrating in both locations with all their loved ones, at a wedding that not only nodded to their own love story, but also their families and their Southern heritage.

We’re so happy our friend and Blue Ribbon Vendor Graham Terhune was on hand to capture this beautiful day!

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? Yes, we did a first look, primarily to knock out as many photos as possible before our reception. After talking over our thoughts with our photographer, Graham, he created an amazing moment for our first look at the ceremony site. Griff stood with his back to me among the antique pews, and I came out of my grandmother’s front door and walked up behind him. It was an incredibly powerful moment and we were both so thrilled to finally see each other. Immediately following our first look, our groomsmen walked from my parents’ home on the opposite end of the farm through the field to my grandmother’s house, on the same path that I used to take between the houses as a little girl. Griff and I stood by the fence and watched them traipse through the field, sunglasses on, in their tuxedos. It was such a fun moment!

I can’t say enough good things about our wedding flowers and our experience with the Flower Patch of Hillsborough. It’s a family-run business that our family has loved for almost three decades. I was a bit of an atypical bride and wanted pumpkins, gourds and other earthy details to be a major element in all of our decor. Dionne from the Flower Patch took my wild ideas and brought them to life in the most incredible ways. From the garlands decorating our ceremony, to our bouquets, to the breathtaking arrangements at our reception, she truly captured and executed my vision flawlessly.

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did not write our own vows–we borrowed traditional vows from the Presbyterian church. That said, since we were getting married in a nontraditional environment, we had the opportunity to write the rest of our ceremony with input from our officiant. Writing our ceremony together was one of the most fun and meaningful things we did together while wedding planning.

I borrowed the antique cameo necklace that my mother wore on her wedding day in 1980, as well as her antique diamond earrings from the 1920’s. My something old was the lace wrapped around my bouquet, which was taken from my mother’s wedding gown. My dress from Traditions by Anna in downtown Raleigh was new and my garter was Carolina blue–a nod to Griff’s alma mater.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Griffin and I are incredibly sentimental people. Our wedding celebrated us, but it also truly embraced both the autumn season and our Southern ancestry. Wherever we could, we sourced elements of the day from our families and their traditions. Speaking of small details, one of Griff’s and my father’s favorite moments was the burying of the bourbon to ensure fabulous weather. In late September, we buried a bottle of Jefferson’s bourbon upside down on the spot of our ceremony, and it worked! Our day was a perfectly cloudless, 72 degree fall day. Griff dug up the bourbon immediately after the ceremony to celebrate. It was a wonderfully impromptu moment.

I have known that I wanted to get married on my family’s farm since I was a little girl. As soon as Griffin and I got engaged, we talked with my family about how to make it work logistically and quickly realized that we likely needed an unconventional plan to pull it off. We ultimately decided to have a small gathering for the ceremony in my grandmother’s front yard, in front of a 200-year-old oak tree, followed by a reception at our beloved Haw River Ballroom in Saxapahaw. My parents have been regulars at the Saxapahaw General Store restaurant since they opened, so working with their team felt almost like we were having the reception at home. It’s funny–as soon as we made this plan, everything else simply fell into place without issue, and it truly felt meant to be.

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Beyond the incredible weather of that day, we both agree that our favorite detail was the very quick supper we enjoyed by ourselves at the Saxapahaw General Store while waiting to make our entrance. The buses dropped us off at the restaurant door adjacent to the Haw River Ballroom, and we got to sit down in one of the booths with all of the other diners, see our favorite folks on staff, and enjoy a few wonderful bites of our reception food. It was incredible to come in wearing our wedding attire and sit down just like any other Saturday date night!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Griffin and I met in 2008 while working at one of Chapel Hill, North Carolina’s most beloved watering holes. He was finishing up his degree at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and I had just returned home from Montana, where I had been working as a cowgirl. Griff was a lead server at Top of the Hill, and trained me on my very first day. We immediately became friends and, though we had both sworn that we’d never be in a relationship with another redhead, we started dating a little less than a year later.
Tell us all about the proposal! We were living near the Chapel Hill Botanical Gardens when we first adopted our dog, Bear. There are multiple trails leaving the botanical gardens, and our favorite was the one to Merritt’s Pasture–a beautiful, pastoral spot in the middle of Chapel Hill. On the day of the proposal, which was also our four-year anniversary of dating, Griff talked me into taking Bear for a walk there again, even though it was misting outside. He had a backpack, which I assumed held a towel and water for the pup, but once we got to a bench at the top of Merritt’s Pasture, looking down over the creek and trees, he whipped out champagne and glasses. That was when I knew something was up! He proposed with his grandmother’s diamond, which was special in that it was from his father’s side of the family, and his father had passed away unexpectedly a few years before. Unfortunately, I never got to meet his father, so to have this connection meant the world to me. We had the diamond set by the incredible team at Wade’s Jewelers of Gibsonville to match my great-grandmother’s wedding band from 1913, which is now my wedding band.
When did y’all get married? October 25, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? We had 75 at the ceremony and 220 at the reception.
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. Immediately following our small ceremony, we held a cake and champagne cocktail hour with that intimate group at the farm before heading to the Haw River Ballroom for the larger reception. My incredibly talented sister made the wedding cake we enjoyed at that time from devil’s food cake and buttercream icing recipes that have been in our family since the 1800s. The recipes were my great-grandmother’s, and I am named for her husband, my great-grandfather Hallie, so it felt like a wonderful tribute. We opted to not have a second cake at our reception. Instead, I wanted to celebrate and embrace autumn with an array of seasonal pies and desserts so that everyone could find something to enjoy. The team at the Saxapahaw General Store pulled that vision off to perfection.
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? In the year leading up to our wedding, we worked hard to understand one others’ communication styles better, especially as they applied to finances. We also made sure to take time away from planning to talk about our future beyond the big day–especially about our goals and dreams, both short and long term. Those times kept us grounded and focused on what was important, and I believe it started us off on the best foot possible once we were married.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? The biggest challenge for us came early on–accepting that our initial vision for both a ceremony and reception on the farm wasn’t going to work. At first, it was frustrating for a time, because we wanted to share the place we loved with all of the people we love, but the logistics for our vision continued to be prohibitive in so many ways. When we realized how much stress holding both events at home would add, and therefore possibly detract from our families’ enjoyment of the day, we pivoted and got the best of both worlds. We were married on the farm, but enjoyed the reception in a place where every detail was handled for us.
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? We purchased a 1930’s bungalow in downtown Durham shortly after our wedding and we are so looking forward to putting some time and love into it in the coming months and years. We’re also tentatively planning a trip abroad sometime in 2016–likely to Ireland!

Photographer: Graham Terhune / Planner: Carly Abernathy of La Fête / Ceremony Venue: Private Residence / Reception Venue: Haw River Ballroom / Florist: The Flower Patch / Wedding Cake: Sarah Sessoms / Caterer and Dessert Baker: The Saxapahaw General Store / Rentals: American Party Rentals / Band: The Troupers / Paper Products: Ply / Veil: Bespoke by Olga’s Bridal & Formal Couture / Hair and Makeup: Lanee Brooks Salon / Bridesmaids’ Dresses and Bride’s Shoes: J. Crew / Bridesmaids Robes: Belles of Cotton / Groom’s Attire: Brooks Brothers / Groomsmen Attire: Julian’s of Chapel Hill / Jewelry: Wade’s Jewelers / Ceremony Strings: Elegant Ensembles / Officiant: Ed Sansbury / Quaker Wedding Certificate: Emily Brooks Designs

Graham Terhune and Ply are delightful members of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

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

    Still one of our favorite weddings ever! Such a fabulous couple!! Thank you for sharing their day!

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While they might have hit a little bump in the road when they first met (be sure to read their interview to get my silly pun!), Monica and Jerrod’s wedding day was as sweet as their amaretto cake. Together with their planner, Meagan Warren, and the talented team at Fern, Monica and Jerrod took the blank space of 701 Whaley and turned it into a pretty, preppy celebration full of pink dogwoods and puffy peonies. I love the juxtaposition of the renovated industrial building and the feminine details!

Thanks to Joshua Aaron for sending this striped day our way!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met on St. Patrick’s Day in Five Points (a local festival in Columbia, South Carolina) through mutual friends. After chatting that evening, Jerrod offered to drive me home. We were sitting at a traffic light talking when Jerrod leaned over to give me a kiss–just as he accidentally took his foot off the brake and bumped into the car in front of us!! After that, we did not see each other for several years, and one night, Jerrod liked a photo I put up on Facebook. I had not seen or spoken to him in so long, so I sent him a message asking him how he was doing. We ended up going out and catching up, and from that night on, we have been together, having fun and creating memories. And there have not been any more fender benders! :)

I went dress shopping in Charleston, South Carolina at a place called Maddison Row. After a couple of dresses, I tried on “THE” dress, and I loved it immediately. I loved the buttons that went down the back of the dress. The fact that my father loved the dress as well sealed the deal!

Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. We had a bagpiper play “Ode to Joy” by Beethoven when I walked down the aisle with my dad. When Jerrod and I walked back up the aisle, he played “Highland Cathedral” by Roever and Korb along with the organ.

We were married at Mt. Horeb United Methodist, which is the church that Jerrod’s mother’s side of the family attends. Our reception venue was 701 Whaley–I really liked the open floor plan and the uniqueness of the renovated building. We could really make it our own.

Describe your wedding flowers. My wedding flowers were beautiful and colorful. There were pink dogwoods in large vases on the tables at the venue. I love peonies, and had the most beautiful peonies at the wedding. I wanted a colorful palette, and it was beyond what I could have imagined.

Describe your wedding cake. The wedding cake was four tiers in amaretto and lemon flavors, and it had real flowers cascading down the side. It was so good, we only had a few pieces left to take home.

Tell us all about the proposal! I am a nurse and I was coming home from a day shift at the hospital. I usually talk to Jerrod on the way home from work to let him know I’m on the way home. When I pull up to the house, he is usually sitting out on our front porch with my dog, a french bulldog named Bella. Bella always runs to greet me when I am getting out of the car. Just like every other day, Jerrod and Bella were outside and Bella ran to greet me. Jerrod was standing on the porch and came walking towards me. We hugged each other and he said “Say hey to Bella.” As I turned around to look at Bella, the sun hit something on her collar. I then realized what it was and turned around to see Jerrod on one knee. He asked me if I would marry him, and I, of course, said yes!!
When did y’all get married? April 18, 2015
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? A little more than 200
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! My old and blue item is very special to me. My Aunt Tina made a garter belt for me out of an old blue tie of my Opa’s (which means grandpa in German). He passed away a few years ago and he was definitely there in spirit at my wedding. I borrowed my mom’s diamond tennis bracelet and I had new earrings that were made especially for me.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? We had koozies made for our guests. We served fried green tomatoes and corn dip, which was amazing. We all sang along to “Family Tradition” by Hank Williams, Jr.–I don’t know if it gets more Southern than that!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? I would suggest hiring a wedding planner if you are able. This takes so much stress off of you and lets you enjoy the wedding planning experience!
What’s next for you as a couple? What memories are you looking forward to making together? Our home is being built and we will be moving at the end of summer 2015. We are also looking forward to expanding our family and having children.

Photographer: Joshua Aaron / Planner: Meagan Warren / Ceremony Venue: Mt. Horeb United Methodist Church / Reception Venue: 701 Whaley / Florist: Fern / Cake Baker: Parkland Cakes / Caterer: Southern Way / Rentals: Party Reflections / Lighting: Ambient Media / DJ: Jason Book with Party Time DJs / Paper Products: Byfarr / Bridal Salon: Maddison Row / Hair Stylist: Keri Bailes / Makeup Artist: Daniel Price / Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka / Menswear: Men’s Wearhouse

marissa Written with love by Marissa
4 Comments
  1. avatar Sarah Svendsen reply

    What vibrant colors! I’m in love with the teal blue bridesmaid dresses and how the bride mixes in the coral flowers. I also love the asymmetrical dresses, though I’m partial (I had similar bridesmaid dresses but in nude at my own wedding) :) Great work, SW!

  2. avatar Meagan Warren reply

    Thank you for showcasing one of my FAVORITE weddings we have planned! Loved working with Monica and Jerrod… dream couple to work with. Thank you Southern Weddings and Joshua Aaron Photography! xoxo, Meagan Warren
    Meagan Warren Weddings

  3. avatar Monica reply

    Hi! Was this just submitted online or in one of your actual magazines?

    • avatar Emily reply

      Hi Monica! This wedding was featured online, not in the magazine! :)

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Katie is a girl after my own heart! She’s a bit addicted to monograms, believes pockets in a dress make everything better, and wanted to create a wedding full of love and sweet Southern hospitality. Katie and David were married at the beautiful Governor Thomas Bennett House in front of 225 of their very favorite people in the world! I must admit I am completely smitten with their pretty preppy day, including fun pops of color, gold pineapples (and a pineapple bow tie!), and monograms galore! But, the very best part, in my opinion, is how many of the details were made my Katie’s mama, godmother, and aunt — it makes them just that much more special.

We’re so delighted Blue Ribbon Vendor Dana Cubbage was on hand to capture their sweet celebration!

Since I worked for Lilly Pulitzer for years, I am accustomed to LOTS of bright colors! We went for bright pink peonies, yellow ranunculus, light pink sweet peas, garden roses, pink astilbe, and dusty miller. We also had pineapples spray painted gold to use as candlesticks and mini pineapples added into the florals on the tables!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. We went EVERYWHERE! We shopped in Charleston twice and all over Charlotte and the surrounding area. Finally, we went to J.Majors, the bridal salon less than a mile from my house. There was one dress that I tried on and everyone said I was smiling from ear to ear when I walked out of the fitting room. It was so simple, classic, and HAD POCKETS! (Pockets in a dress just make everything better!) After swishing around for a bit, we were told it was called the “Mimi” dress. Cue the tears! My grandmother, Mimi, who had passed away 15 years before, loved wedding planning and it was the sign we all needed to stop looking.

Did you decide to do a first look? Why or why not? Yes! And it was the best decision we made! It took a little convincing for David, the traditionalist, but I was totally on board from the beginning! With a little help from our photographer and a friend of David’s, we finally convinced him. We didn’t feel rushed and actually got to spend some time together during the day. We couldn’t stop smiling and laughing the whole time!

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? We definitely wanted to have a Southern-style Charleston Wedding, so we looked at just about every venue in Charleston. We finally had it narrowed down to the last few when one of my maids of honor, Kacie, mentioned the Governor Thomas Bennett House. It had everything: a beautiful semi-circle garden, a large covered porch (with a blue ceiling, of course), ivy-covered arches, spiral staircases, a large oak tree with Spanish moss (a MUST for me!), a secret garden, and more!

Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? We did not write our own vows, but took our favorite lines and verbiage from different traditional religious vows and combined them in our own way. David was very adamant on not saying the word “death” on our wedding day, so at the conclusion of our vows we made sure to use “as long as we both shall live.”
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? 1 Corinthians. We both know that it is used all the time, but it made us feel like we were REALLY getting married! (Plus, it reminds us of our wedding when we hear it!)
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. The bridal party walked down to Vitamin String Quartet’s version of “Ho Hey” by the Lumineers, followed by a guitar and string version of “Here Comes the Bride.” Once we were announced as husband and wife, we walked up the aisle to “This will be (an Everlasting Love).”

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? So many, including pineapples (a sign of welcome and hospitality), monograms (we own a family monogram business, after all)!, and Southern cooking (including fried green tomatoes with pimento cheese, a mac and cheese bar, shrimp and grits, and late-night chicken and waffle sliders with french fries!).

What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? Dana Cubbage is the BEST! She was able to capture every moment and every detail of the wedding. She was so relaxed the entire day, which made me extremely relaxed, too! She was always an arms distance away to grab a photo and was all over the dance floor snapping away. The next day, our family and friends couldn’t stop talking about how amazing she was! We cannot wait to find another excuse for more pictures! Also, Meredith and her team were behind the scenes the entire day. I know I only know a small percentage of everything they went through, which means a ton! She would sneak in at the last second to save the day by taking David’s sunglasses out of his pocket before our first dance, making sure we had a fresh glass of champagne for toasts, offering dryer sheets for when the bugs came out at night, and putting my getaway tote in the getaway rickshaw!

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? I would make a list of the things that are truly important to you and your fiance. If it’s food and band, that is great. If it’s open bar and a DJ, that is great, too! Definitely learn where you want to make cuts and which things you have your heart set on! Also, there are so many ways that you can get the look but at a fraction of the cost! We made our own table runners for less than 1/3 of the original cost. We also reused the bridesmaid bouquets at the reception and aisle markers on cocktail tables!

Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We had a three-tiered red velvet cake with buttercream icing as our main cake. The aqua bow had our married monogram! We also had two mini cakes that were white chocolate with buttercream icing and a groom’s cake with a VT logo on top and vintage camo sides – a great surprise!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. One of my co-workers went on a blind date with David and texted me at the end of the date saying that I needed to meet this guy. So the next few times they hung out, I was invited to tag along, as well. After a few weeks went by, I was encouraged to reach out to David, so I did! (VERY unlike me!)
Tell us all about the proposal! On December 24th, David woke me up super early! He convinced me to go on a walk with our Golden Retriever, Shelby, in the park across from our house. Begrudgingly, in sweats, Uggs, no makeup (and friends joke – no monograms) we went on our early morning walk. I knew something was up, but I had expected something to happen later on in the day when our two families would all be together. Almost all the way around the lake, he talked about the first time he knew he fell in love with me, caught in a rainstorm, hanging out underneath a tree, walking Shelby. At that, he was down on his knee! (Shelby was pawing at the ring, too!) I freaked out and apparently never actually said yes!
When did y’all get married? March 14, 2015 (3.14.15!)
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 225 of our favorite people in the world!
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! YES! Borrowed: my gold Claddagh Ring borrowed from my sister. I also borrowed a pearl necklace from my mom. Blue: I wore aqua Jack Rogers to match the bridesmaids and not sink into the grass! Old: The monogram on my sash (my maiden monogram) was my something old. It was also the last time I would be able to wear my maiden monogram! New: my new dress, earrings, and shoes!
How did you plan for your marriage while planning your wedding? While planning for our wedding, we definitely had opportunities to talk about our faith, our beliefs, and our family values. We also had challenges and were able to work through our wedding budget together, as well. Also, halfway through the wedding planning process, we got a puppy! (While it might not seem like the best idea, it was great to “practice” our paternal roles, as well!)
If you are comfortable responding, what range did your wedding budget fall into? $50,000-$75,000
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? I would have to say the ceremony. We were so relaxed going into our ceremony (where I thought I would be stressed and nervous) because we had a “dance party” with the entire bridal party and then the music went off and we were sent down the aisle! Once we made it down the aisle (which is a bit of a blur) I don’t know if I have ever laughed so hard in my life! David’s cousin was our minister and was able to tell our story in a way that had everyone laughing.
Is there anything else you’d like to share about your wedding? My uncle Dom made us a Beautiful Bench,made from the wood of my grandfathers work bench, for us to use as our “guest book!” Mom & Aunt Mo painted a monogram on it & the guest were able to sign it in gold & navy sharpies! We cannot wait to find a special place in our house to display it!

Photographer: Dana Cubbage | Planner: Meredith Tanton from Sweetgrass Social | Venue: The Governor Thomas Bennett House | Florist: Branch Design Studio | Wedding Cake or Dessert Baker: Ashley Bakery | Caterer: Cru Catering | Rentals: Snyder Events and Event Works | Lighting: Technical Event Company | Band or DJ: Jim Bowers | Monogrammed items: It’s a Girl Thing | Invitations: Blue Glass Design | Signage: Bride’s Godmother | Bride’s Gown: “Mimi” by Wtoo | Bridal Salon, Veil, and Earrigns: J.Majors Bridal Boutique | Bracelet: Beads Inc. | Hair Stylist and Makeup Artist: Shayla with Paper Dolls | Bride’s Shoes: Jack Rogers | Bridesmaid Dresses: Coren Moore from Bella Bridesmaids Charlotte | Groom’s Attire: Nordstrom | Groomsmen Attire: Jos. A Bank | Bow Ties: High Cotton

Dana Cubbage is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
5 Comments
  1. avatar Zookbinders Wedding Albums reply

    Wow! This is a beautiful wedding! Love the color

  2. avatar Kirsti reply

    I LOVE LOVE LOVE everything about this wedding!! I love the southern prep theme and of course, the pineapples!!

  3. avatar Real Wedding: Katie + David | Sweetgrass Social reply

    […] To see more of Katie and David’s wedding, check out their feature on Southern Weddings! […]

  4. avatar Real Wedding at Thomas Bennett House in Charleston, SC – Sweetgrass Social reply

    […] To see more of Katie and David’s wedding, check out their feature on Southern Weddings! […]

  5. avatar Kat reply

    SO much color! Gold, fuchsia, prints…what a fun day. I think my favorite thing is you can tell how authentic the couple stayed to themselves throughout every aspect of their wedding.

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