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When the setting of your wedding day is as naturally gorgeous as Dunaway Gardens, it’s hard to go wrong with decor. Meredith and Tyler worked with the team at Tailor and Table to fill their wedding with lush, organic blooms that complemented the surrounding greenery perfectly! For these two, who love to go on walks and hikes, the outdoor amphitheater and gardens made their wedding day feel like “something out of a fairy tale.” Meredith’s words, not mine, but I’d have to agree with her! Top off the day with fun corn hole games, a sweet ceremony, and yummy Southern comfort food from Sun in My Belly, and you’ve got a wedding any guest would be thrilled to attend!

Big hugs to Amy Arrington Photography for sharing this pretty day with us!

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I was so lucky to get to go wedding dress shopping with my awesome mother, mother-in-law, and one of my best friends. We were the perfect team and ended up finding the dress pretty quickly, after I tried on just two other gowns. We had already chosen our gorgeous garden venue, so I when I tried on THE gown, I knew it would look perfectly in-place among the trees at Dunaway Gardens. I loved the interesting back detail, Queen Anne neckline, and, of course, the delicate Southern lace.

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Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? Tyler and I did decide to do a first look. We wanted to make sure we carved out a special time for us to see each other before the ceremony, and to step away from all of the chaos for a moment. The first look was one of our favorite moments of the day and resulted in some of our favorite photographs, too!

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We knew we wanted an outdoor ceremony and reception, and we wanted to hold the wedding a little further outside of Atlanta to make the weekend feel like a mini vacation for all of our guests. As soon as we saw Dunaway, we both fell in love with the property, its natural feel, lush trees, and outdoor amphitheater. It felt like something out of a fairy tale.

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Did you write your own vows? If so, what was your favorite phrase, verse or line? Tyler’s dear family friend married us, which was incredibly special. The ceremony was a combination of traditional vows, personal touches, and tributes to our relationship, written by our awesome officiant.
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We were honored to have to have two of our brothers read during the ceremony: my brother read Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 and Tyler’s brother read 1 Corinthians 13:1-13.

We wanted our wedding to be a fun, Southern celebration of the outdoors! For cocktail hour, we set up custom corn hole boards for our guests to play while sipping on wine and local Atlanta beer from Monday Night Brewery. We also had some Southern comfort food on our menu, courtesy of Sun in My Belly: buttermilk fried chicken skewers, meatloaf sliders with sun-dried tomato mayo, and a salad with fried Vidalia onions.

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Describe your wedding flowers. I knew I wanted to reflect the natural beauty of the garden by featuring heavy greenery, white anemones, and blue thistle. Luckily, I had the BEST design team to make it happen–Natalia Scott Perkins and Bart Scott of Tailor and Table. They created the most beautiful reception space, with a hanging statement at the head table, thick green garlands with soft white rose accents, and touches of blue from the anemones and thistle. The bouquets and boutonnieres also featured sprigs of rosemary, bay laurel, nigella, and chocolate cosmos.

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“Marry Me” (Train) is on my list of most fun songs of the night, because I got to sing it with my college a cappella group, UGA Noteworthy, as part of a deep-rooted Noteworthy wedding tradition of the bride singing her solo at the reception. That particular song, as cheesy as it was to sing at my own wedding, was my solo on our 2012 album, Ladies First (available on iTunes!), and is always a blast to sing with my closest friends beside me. At the last Noteworthy wedding, I caught the bouquet at the reception. At my wedding, the Noteworthy girl that caught my bouquet was proposed to the following weekend, and is getting married in April! We can’t wait to see who’s next!

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Tyler and I met on the school bus during our freshman year of high school. We became close friends, and since our families lived down the street from each other, we went on tons of walks and hikes together. At some point, these outdoor adventures started to feel more like fun dates, and we became inseparable. After high school, I went off to the University of Georgia and he left for Georgia State. We weren’t used to being so far from each other, but we definitely made it work! Needless to say, after our many years together and all we had been through, we (and our families) could not possibly have been more excited about our wedding!
Tell us all about the proposal! Tyler proposed at our favorite high school hiking spot at the Roswell Mill. It’s a beautiful place off of the Chattahoochee River where there are still remnants of an 1800 cotton mill and a still-functioning old dam. The evening of his proposal, I was feeling pretty down because my two best friends, with whom I was supposed to have dinner that night, had cancelled last minute. Tyler suggested a walk through the trails at Roswell Mill to cheer me up. At the top of the dam, he asked me to be his wife–I think I said yes at least 27 times! Still giddy with excitement, I rode with Tyler to a restaurant down the road, where he said he had made a reservation for the two of us. When we got through the door, I saw that my family, his family, and my two best friends were there to celebrate with us!
When did y’all get married? September 20, 2014
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 130
What was one way you saved money or cut costs at your wedding? We created a lot of the details ourselves–Tyler made the programs, and my mom and I made my veil and the basil seed favors.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? It is so hard to pick one! I’m going to have to go with the combination of Amy Arrington Photography and Tailor and Table Design Studio, without whom I would not have the gorgeous photos of our wedding, laden with the most beautiful flowers I have ever seen. I am beyond grateful to them for how perfectly everything turned out!
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Lean on your families and friends and delegate! Tyler and I definitely had a clear vision for our wedding, but we could not have done it (physically or emotionally) without the support of our awesome families and our close friends.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We are loving married life so far! We are currently most looking forward to bringing home a new puppy in a few months!

Photographer: Amy Arrington Photography / Venue: Dunaway Gardens / Florist: Tailor and Table / Wedding Cake: Publix / Caterer: Sun in My Belly / DJ: Spectrum Entertainment / Paper Products: Paper Snaps / Bride’s Gown: “Erin” by Watters / Hair Stylist: Lindsay at NV Hair Studio / Bride’s Shoes: BHLDN / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: “Kami” by J. Crew / Menswear: Men’s Wearhouse

Amy Arrington and Sun in My Belly are delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
13 Comments
  1. avatar liam smith reply

    stunning location, love the colour and clarity of the images

  2. avatar Emily reply

    I love all of the greenery at the reception, and Meredith’s lace dress is beautiful!

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  4. avatar Marilisa S. reply

    Bravo Natalia & Bart on the stunning florals! Congrats to the beautiful couple!

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  10. avatar Elizabeth reply

    Where was the adorable cornhole board purchased?!?

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  12. avatar Woodstock Corn Hole Games reply

    The Monogram corn hole set in article was custom made by Woodstock Corn Hole Games.

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Yippee!! Just a few more weeks until V5 arrives!

Erin + Brian might have shared their first kiss on a fifth grade class field trip to the planetarium, but they had no idea they would reconnect years later. Brian even brought Erin back to the same planetarium to get down on one knee and ask her to marry him. (Aww!) Though the two were so ready to get married that they considered tying the knot at city hall, they stuck it out and used their seven-month engagement to create a barn-side wedding full of DIY details and family heirlooms. We love the combination of soft cotton and succulent plants throughout their big day and the fun projection they played against their tent at the reception. Big thanks to Morgan Trinker for sharing this one with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. My mom and I planned an entire weekend in Birmingham to find my dress and had dress fittings scheduled at 3 different stores. I knew what type of dress I was looking for, so that helped as we walked into our first appointment at The White Room. We were both shocked when I picked the second dress I tried on. I put on a third dress, but I was dying to put the second one back on. That was the easiest part of planning our wedding!
Did you decide to do a “first look”? We did not do a first look. It was very important to Brian that we see each other for the first time as I was walking down the aisle. The expression on his face as I was walking toward him was so worth the wait.

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What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We had two groomsmen and two bridesmaids read a passage from “This Momentary Marriage” by John Piper as Brian and I “planted” a tree. They read pages 55-57. It was long, but filled with great words every new couple should hear!
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding. We had string instruments and a pianist playing for the ceremony. It was beautiful! I walked down the aisle to “A Thousand Years” by Christina Perri and walked back up the aisle to “Love Story” by Taylor Swift. Our first dance was to”You and I” by Michael Buble

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One of my favorite Southern details from the wedding was the actual venue! Hampstead Farms was the perfect location to celebrate our marriage. I loved how naturally beautiful the growing fruits, vegetables, and flowers looked around our tent, and the gorgeous red barn was the perfect background to every photo. I am also obsessed with crafting and creating, so I love that many Southern weddings now include DIY aspects, which helped me add personal details to our big day. I handmade our save-the-dates, invitations and RSVP cards using paper from Paper Source and custom made stamps from Antiquaria. I also put together the aisle markers using burlap bows and twig wreaths, made the ring bearer pillow, and put together the wedding favors with the help of incredible friends and family. My sweet groom and his brother also made the tree candle holders which were used on the reception tables. Throughout our engagement, I was collecting lanterns and cake plates. I also had many sentimental items used that day, like my baby bonnet which was wrapped around my bouquet, and my grandmother’s doilies, which were used on several different tables.

I am terrible when it comes to flower names, but that’s where pinterest and my incredible florist came in handy. I showed them several pictures of succulents, garden roses, and ranunculus, and asked them to make wild bouquets with similar flowers and add lots of greenery. I was blown away! We had a great mix of succulents, lambs ear (my favorite), branches, and several other flowers. They also built our centerpiece flower boxes for the reception, and they turned out even better than I imagined!

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Describe your wedding cake or dessert: We actually had five cakes and some Greek desserts. Peggy McKinney made our two-tiered white wedding cake with buttercream frosting, and our one-tiered cakes in peanut butter fudge, strawberry, and key lime. My Aunt Jeana made her homemade pineapple upside down cake (Brian’s favorite). Brian’s mother (who is Greek) and some of the Greek women from church made some other desserts like traditional wedding cookies and baklava.

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How did the two of you meet? Tell us your story. In the fifth grade, my family decided to send me to Forest Avenue Academic Magnet School. I was assigned to Mrs. Rodopoulos’ class which just so happens to be the same class Brian was in that year. I didn’t notice Brian right away — It wasn’t until a little friend of mine leaned over in math class one day and asked if I liked Brian as a boyfriend. I said no at first, but once I found out that Brian liked me, I quickly changed my mind! We became boyfriend/girlfriend that day and permanent four-square buddies. Later on that year, our class took a fieldtrip right down the street to the Gayle Planetarium. I was so excited to sit next to Brian and watch the show. Finally, right before the show was over, Brian planted a big kiss on my left temple, and HARD! It almost knocked me out of my seat! We walked around Oak Park after the show with the rest of the class, and I could not stop smiling. My first kiss! :) We lost touch after middle school, but we would run into each other occasionally throughout high school and college. In December of 2010, Brian texted me saying, “I had a dream that we went on a date last night.” I had no idea who it was because I didn’t have Brian’s number in my phone anymore. We talked back and forth for a while until I finally said yes to a date. A few nights later, Brian pulled up to my house having no idea what to expect of the night. I was shocked at how handsome Brian had become, and even more shocked at how perfectly that night went. We laughed a lot, talked about the past, and couldn’t believe that after all this time, we were hanging out again. We have been inseparable ever since then.
Describe the proposal. (From the groom) As Erin was getting ready for a “family photo shoot” with her grandmother, a vintage Studebaker pulled up at the front of the house. A chauffeur knocked on the door and whisked Erin away to the Gayle Planetarium, where I first kissed her 14 years ago. I heard the car door shut and my heart stopped. What were my lines? Where is the ring? She found her way to me and my heart began beating hard. “It’s for her, it’s always been for her,” I thought, “Every beat, every breath. I need this in my life forever.” I dropped to one knee and said, “Under these stars is where I first kissed you, and under these stars is where I want to start the rest of our lives.” It was as easy as that. We took our old seats and just stared at the stars reminiscing on things past and things to come.
In what month did you get married? September
How many guests attended your wedding? About 125
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? Patience! Brian and I were so ready to be married that our 7 month engagement felt more like 2 years. We mentioned city hall several times during our engagement, but we stuck it out and it was so worth the wait. Having our wonderful family and friends there to celebrate the beginning of our lives together was the best part of our wedding day.
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $10,000-$25,000
What is the one thing you are most happy you splurged on? Our photographer! Our wedding pictures are the only thing we get to physically keep from that day, and I couldn’t have asked for a better person to capture those sweet moments. Morgan Trinker is creative, talented, and just a genuinely happy person to be around. I highly recommend her to any bride!
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Walking down the aisle. The look on Brian’s face was more than words could ever describe. The love he feels for me and shows me every single day was displayed in front of all of our family and friends in that moment. It felt like we were the only two people there, and I couldn’t stop looking at him. All of time, money, planning and crafting. that went into the wedding doesn’t even compare to that one moment that we will remember for the rest of our lives.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Enjoy it. The planning process can be so tedious at times, but some of the sweetest moments come during your engagement. The bridal showers, engagement parties, and gifts from family and friends are such a fun part of planning a wedding. Live in the moment and celebrate this exciting time with the people who mean the most to you.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you looking forward to in the future? Buying a house! We are currently looking for our first home together, which is both exciting and exhausting at the same time. We are eager to find a place of our own and start our own little family down the road.

nicoleyang Written with love by Nicole
14 Comments
  1. avatar Ashleigh reply

    I love love love everything about your wedding, Erin! Just charming!

  2. avatar Kelly C. reply

    I love the details! Beautiful work as always, Morgan!

  3. avatar Lerissa reply

    Wow! This is such a beautiful wedding! & that proposal story was beautiful!

    Every other week my fiance and I talk seriously about pushing up our date. Why wait a year? We’ve been strong so far to keep with our October 2013 date!

  4. avatar kelly @ honor courage commitment reply

    Who are the bridesmaids dresses and bride’s dress by? Love them!

    -kelly

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