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Danielle and Richard wanted their wedding to feel like they were throwing it in their dream fancy backyard, and when it came time to choosing a location for their pending nuptials, New Orleans turned out to be the perfect place! It’s a city they both love, and to Danielle and Richard, it symbolizes “warmth, festivity, and fun”–all fabulous attributes of a Southern wedding, y’all! After checking out 10 venues in 36 hours (woah!), they said an “instantaneous and unanimous” yes to The Terrell House. Of course, when you top off a beautiful ceremony with a surprise second line, it’s a given that your celebration was a blast!

Big hugs to Blue Ribbon Vendor, Maile Lani, for sharing!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I had an image in my head of the style of dress that I wanted and did a lot of research online to try and find it. I came across a boutique in Soho called Saja that seemed to have the type of soft, unstructured, simple, yet elegant dresses that I liked. My sister and I went together, and the very first dress I tried on, I loved. I tried on a few more there, and then a few at BHLDN, but soon, I went back to Saja with my mom. When I put that first dress back on, there was no question. I love my dress and I love that I didn’t stress about it.

We did do a first look. We wanted to take all our formal pictures before the ceremony so that our guests wouldn’t have to wait for us (and so we wouldn’t miss any of the party). I was really worried that the first look and our portraits would be awkward., but somehow, our photographer, Maile, made them not LOOK awkward. We were laughing and goofing around the whole time, so it ended up being really enjoyable.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? Our first step was choosing New Orleans. We knew we didn’t want to get married in NYC or where either of us grew up (Boston and El Paso). New Orleans is a city that we both love and have visited frequently. It’s also a place that symbolizes warmth, festivity, and fun. On a short trip there, we checked out 10 venues in 36 hours, but our love for The Terrell House was instantaneous and unanimous. We wanted to get married somewhere that would feel like we were throwing a ceremony in our backyard (albeit a backyard nicer than one we’ll ever own!). Since we were going to have to plan everything from afar, it also helped that they do the planning, decorating, and catering themselves.

Describe your wedding flowers. Our flowers were all shades of pink with silver and turquoise accents. We wanted a unstructured, mismatched look with different shaped and sized vases, and no two bouquets looking exactly the same.

What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? It’s just one day and it goes by so fast. Enjoy the planning, because if you are not having fun, it’s not worth it. When decisions come up, make them and move on. There is no right answer, so stressing over the decisions will only make you miserable. Your guests will not judge you on the details (and if they do, they are missing the point), and when you are actually living in the moment, even the things that didn’t turn out perfectly will become endearing. A lot of my guests commented on how relaxed I was as a bride, and I really was. All I saw around me were my friends and family from all around the WORLD, and Rick’s smiling face. It was such a happy day and I’m so appreciative that the whole process leading up to it was an adventure, rather than something stressful.

We don’t feel particularly drawn to multi-tiered, white wedding cakes, and find that guests don’t often eat them, but Rick LOVES cake. We decided to go with the New Orleans theme and get three doberge cakes in three different flavors. They were a big hit!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Walking the second line, I was already having so much fun, but at one point, I remembered to turn around and look at my guests. We hadn’t told anyone about the second line, so it was a huge surprise. Seeing their gaping mouths and the thrill in their eyes as we danced through the street, chaperoned by the police, with revelers from the neighborhood coming out of their homes to wave at us…it was the most special moment of my day.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. Rick and I are both television producers and we met when working on an MTV show. The first place we traveled together was Ohio State, and as we interviewed kids about their personal lives, a spark quickly grew between us. Once we returned home to NYC, we started dating, and it made the rest of our work travel a whole lot more fun. Almost exactly three years later, we were married.
Tell us all about the proposal! We had been talking about our future for a while and knew we wanted to make that commitment, but then I got a job working on a show where I would have to live in Chattanooga, Tennessee for three weeks a month for five months, so we put our plans on the back burner for a little while. Since both of us travel for work, we try to take advantage and visit each other when one of us is out of town at an interesting location. Rick came to visit me for a few days and we got to explore the city. One day, we went to a rock climbing haven at a golf course, and at one point, when we were resting on the top of a boulder, Rick proposed to me with my great-grandmother’s ring that he had gotten from my mother. It certainly wasn’t where I had expected to get engaged (I was wearing sweatpants and no make up!), but there was romance to the randomness of it. It symbolizes to me that no matter where life takes us, we can find a way to make any place we land special.
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 85
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? My 86-year-old grandmother traveled from Toronto to New Orleans–a very long trip. It was important to me to honor her by having her read at our ceremony, so she read “Blessing for Marriage” by James Dillet Freeman.
Our favorite detail of the wedding was: Having the love and laughter from our friends and family all around us. When all is said and done, that is 100 percent what we remember most.
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? The Terrell House has a deal with a liquor distributor, so we were able to order bottles at wholesale cost and then return the unopened bottles. Our liquor costs were way lower than any quotes we received from caterers. Also, I taught myself photoshop so that all the programs, welcome letters, etc., were handmade.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We just returned from our honeymoon–a safari in Tanzania, Africa–and now, it’s time to enjoy our lives together. I would be lying if I said we haven’t both talked about being sad that our wedding is all over, but it’s nice to have the time together where we don’t feel like there is something we have to plan.

Photographer: Maile Lani / Venue, Flowers, and Caterer: The Terrell House / Cake Baker: Debbie Does Doberge / Band: 504eva Band / Bride’s Gown: “HB6633” by Saja / Hair and Makeup: Kiss and Make Up / Bride’s Shoes: Kate Spade / Groom’s Attire: Loro Piana

Maile Lani is a delightful member of our Blue Ribbon Vendor Directory!

marissa Written with love by Marissa
1 Comment
  1. avatar Charleston Wedding Videographer reply

    Absolutely love browsing through the photos of this wedding! Gorgeous greenery, floral arrangements and New Orleans theme. Simply stunning.

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Amy and Joseph’s wedding blended both of their families’ traditions to give their nearly 400 guests an experience filled with sweet Southern hospitality and a heap of joy! Just one of the many reasons I love reading Real Wedding interviews is finding out gems about why a couple chose a certain detail. In this case, I love how Amy’s cascading bouquet was inspired by an old portrait of her great grandmother that her mother had seen. Amy had also dreamed of having a Southern gospel choir at her wedding–I know that our own Editor in Chief would have been singing away with them!

Big SW hugs to Elisabeth Millay for sharing this lovely day with us!

Tell us about finding your wedding dress. This was actually very easy for me! My mom and aunt saw my Monique Lhuillier dress in a magazine and sent me a picture text that said “This is your dress!” I love bows, and I also knew I didn’t want anything strapless. We went to Joan Pillow in Atlanta specifically to try it on and our consultant, Susan, was wonderful. She made me try on two other dresses before my dress to ensure I had seen others. As soon as I put it on, we knew it was the one.

We can see why Amy knew this was her dress right off the bat! You may recognize this sparkly Monique Lhuiller stunner from our V6 Cover Shoot! What a gorgeous dress (and bride, of course!).

The only real vision I had for the flowers was a neutral palette and lots of them! My mom also had a wonderful vision of a cascading bouquet–an idea she got from an old portrait of my great grandmother. Other than our initial vision, we entrusted the details to Heather and Kristin and they did a fabulous job. I was so happy with how everything turned out.

What made you choose your ceremony and reception venues? Did they have any special significance to you? The ceremony was held at our temple in Charleston, which is the oldest reform temple in the country. It has a lot of special significance to my family, who have been members for several generations and are actively involved in the congregation. I was actually a flower girl in my aunt and uncle’s wedding there! We knew we wanted to be inside and downtown, so we didn’t have very many options that fit our guest count. The Charleston Marriott was a perfect choice, and it exceeded our expectations. The service and staff were exceptional.

What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? We really wanted people to feel the Southern hospitality in Charleston. Our graphic designer created an image of a plantation oak tree that we used on several of our printed materials, including our save the dates. Charleston is known for its sweetgrass baskets, so my mom had the idea to have sweetgrass napkin rings made for our table settings at the wedding. We got 400 made by a local Charleston basket maker, Nakia Wigfall, and it was such a special touch for the tables. We also had a Southern gospel choir singing outside the temple as people exited–I had been envisioning that for a while, and I think our guests really enjoyed it! We also were fortunate to be able to include all of our out-of-town guests in our rehearsal dinner, which I think was a great way to welcome people to Charleston. It was held at Lowndes Grove Plantation and was a Southern dinner, complete with a Lowcountry boil, fried chicken, and boiled peanuts!

What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? We were really fortunate and had a very easy wedding planning process because we surrounded ourselves with a fabulous team. I think the biggest challenge for me was putting the wedding out of my mind and making myself focus on studying and passing the bar exam. I graduated from law school in May and sat for the bar in July, so I had periods when I couldn’t do any wedding stuff, even though it was all I wanted to do.
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? We were so fortunate to have Kristin and her team, who made everything so seamless and beautiful. Not a beat was missed!

What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? This sounds so cheesy, but the whole weekend was just incredible. If I had to describe the weekend in one word, it would be humbling. Having all of our family and so many of our close friends come from so far to be with us was such a special feeling, and Joseph and I will never forget it.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? When you get overwhelmed, take a break, because everything all works out. It is sometimes easy to loose sight of the end result, which is that you get to get married. Be sure to take the whole weekend in and celebrate each other.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We were both living in Washington, DC and met at a mutual friend’s house. We had actually lived in the same apartment building for about a year, but didn’t meet until after Joseph had moved out. We ended up having a great conversation the day we met and Joseph called me the next week to ask me out to dinner.
Tell us all about the proposal! It was the 4th of July. We had been out on the boat with some of our friends during the day and had plans to go to my aunt and uncle’s house that night to celebrate with family and fireworks. I was sitting on the sofa trying to motivate myself to get ready when Joseph just came over and asked me to marry him. It was a really special moment, and I was happy that it was just the two of us there for the proposal. Our families and friends knew it was going to happen, so they were all waiting to celebrate with us, which was so great!
When did y’all get married? November 2, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 380
Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did, for a couple reasons. We are an interfaith couple but had a Jewish wedding. In the Jewish religion, you sign a ketubah before the marriage ceremony, so once we decided to have a Jewish wedding, we knew we would be seeing each other beforehand. Our wedding was also in November, so we wouldn’t have gotten daylight pictures if we hadn’t seen each other before. Truly, seeing each other before turned out to be a real blessing. I was so much more relaxed because we got to ride a trolley to the temple together with our families and wedding party and hang out together before the ceremony. I completely understand why people choose not to, and it’s a personal choice, but for us, it worked out perfectly!
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. I have a very close friend from law school who is a classically trained singer. I wanted to walk down the aisle to something different, and I have always loved Alison Krauss’ song “When you Say Nothing at All.” Kaitlyn said she would sing it for me accompanied by the temple’s organ and a guitar player. I thought it sounded beautiful and was really unique. For our first dance, we danced to Stevie Wonder’s “Signed, Sealed, Delivered.”
Describe your wedding cake or dessert. We actually had a cake bar! My mom had seen a picture in a wedding magazine and got the vision for not just one, but five cakes, and Jim Smeal executed it perfectly.
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I did! My something borrowed was my earrings. My something blue was a sapphire stone on the pearl bracelet I wore. My something old was an old family Bible that is covered in white lace. Every woman in my family has signed it on their wedding day, so it was really special to put our names in it. My something new was my dress!
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? Married life is great! Joseph and I are getting settled in our new home, and we are really enjoying life being able to spend more time together now that I’m done with law school.

Photographer: Elisabeth Millay / Videographer: Hart to Heart Media / Planner: Kristin Newman Designs / Ceremony Venue: Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim / Reception Venue and Catering: The Charleston Marriott / Florist: Gathering Floral and Event Design / Cake Bar Baker: Jim Smeal / Rentals: Synder Events / Band: Simply Irresistible / Bride’s Gown: “Champagne” by Monique Lhuillier / Paper Products: Oscar & Emma Designs / Calligraphy: Elizabeth Porcher Jones / Hair Stylist: Stuart Laurence / Makeup Artist: Anne Lauren Jolly / Bride’s Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Pronovias / Men’s Attire: Grady Ervin

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

    This is such a big wedding! Congratulations!

  2. avatar Olivia Fischer reply

    Lovely and Gorgeous glittering wedding dress !! AWESOME Photography !!

  3. avatar Lisa reply

    This dress never gets old! Amy looks stunning in it!

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I am especially delighted to share today’s wedding, because Riley and Bryant just so happen to represent the two states closest to my heart! Planning a Texas wedding while living in Bryant’s home state of North Carolina presented its challenges, but with the help of Riley’s mother and the event planning team at Grit & Gold, the intimate ceremony and charming reception came together so beautifully. If there’s one thing we love more than anything else here at Southern Weddings, it’s a wedding centered on the marriage rather than the details. Riley and Bryant never lost sight of the true meaning of their wedding day, and their joy is so evident in all of their beautiful pictures!

A big thank you to Kassie Moore for sharing Riley and Bryant’s big day with us!

Tell us all about the proposal! We were in Miami for the Bama national championship game to watch my brother play. He surprised me the night after Bama won at dinner while sitting in a cabana in the rain. He presented me with a box that he made himself out of olive wood from Bethlehem with the most beautiful ring inside!

Did you decide to do a “first look”? Why or why not? We did not do a first look. We had waited for a lot of things in our relationship and decided to wait to see each other as well. It was so special for me to walk into the chapel and see him for the first time.
What was your most memorable moment about your wedding day? Walking into the church, no question. I was so overwhelmed by how much I love Bryant. I was so happy to see him and to be marrying him!

My heart skipped a beat seeing their expressions in this picture. He looks so proud, and she looks so happy!

Our flowers were gorgeous!! We used pops of coral with blush undertones. Our florist, we plus you, included succulents, which was my favorite touch!

Our favorite detail of the wedding was: The deer sheds that were included in the decor. Bryant is a hunter, so we incorporated the theme “the hunt is over” as a tribute to him.

We had several different layer cakes. My favorite was salted caramel, but we also had traditional white, chocolate, and white cake with chocolate icing. They were the most delicious cakes I’ve ever tasted in my life. They were iced very simply with vintage cake toppers.

How did y’all meet? Tell us your love story. We met at UNC. We were both athletes and got to know each other through Bible study. I liked him for a couple of months before he asked me on a first date to go to Cookout for a milkshake. From there we went fishing and the rest was history.
When did y’all get married? July 6, 2013
How many friends, family members, and loved ones attended your wedding? 80 to the ceremony and 180 to the reception. We kept the ceremony small because it was so sacred to us.
Tell us about finding your wedding dress. I went to Bliss in Fort Worth. I knew I wanted something simple so that I could dance it in. I went with a strapless column style dress with a blush bow detail. I wore a birdcage veil that finished the outfit perfectly!
What readings, if any, did you have at your ceremony? We used Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 as the central piece for our ceremony.
Tell us about some of the songs you used throughout your wedding and why you chose them. During the unity candle lighting, we chose “In Your Presence” by Elevation Worship. After we were married, we walked back down the aisle to “O Happy Day.”
Did you have something borrowed, blue, old, and new? If so, do tell! I borrowed my mom’s beautiful gold earrings that had a tiny blue gem in the middle. They were given to her by her friends.
What Southern details or traditions did you include in your celebration? What was Southern about your wedding? Bryant is from Charlotte and I’m from Texas, so it was a great melding of the best of each state! At the rehearsal dinner, his family included Cheerwine with dinner, which was such a fun touch for my family and friends who had never heard of it.
What was the biggest challenge you had to overcome while planning your wedding? They biggest challenge was planning the wedding in Texas while living in North Carolina. My mom thought of everything to make the day so special, but it meant that I had to give her free reign on design since I couldn’t see everything. She made it more special that I ever dreamed it would be!!
What range did your wedding budget fall into? $25,000-$50,000
What is the one detail or vendor that you were so happy to have as a part of your wedding? The florist did an incredible arrangement on the altar for the ceremony. It was in a turquoise McCoy pot that my mom had collected. It was absolutely stunning.
What advice do you have for folks currently planning a wedding? Don’t sweat the small stuff. At the end of the day, the two of you will be married. Remember to make it about the marriage, not the wedding.
What’s next for you as a couple? What are you most looking forward to about married life? We waited to live together until we got married, so I am looking forward to waking up to my sweet husband in the morning!

Photographer: Kassie Moore | Planner: Grit + Gold | Ceremony Venue: Whites Chapel | Reception Venue: Joe T. Garcias | Florist: Amanda Ferguson | Cake Baker: The Cake Guys | DJ: Jeff Hornok | Special Details: BHLDN | Bride’s Gown: Bliss Bridal, Pronovias Ucayal Style | Paper Products: AMG Design Co | Bride’s Veil: Sara Gabriel, Collette Style | Hair Stylist: Christine Larsen Legacy Salon and Spa | Makeup Artist: Bobbi Brown Makeup Artist | Bride’s Shoes: J.Crew | Bridesmaids’ Dresses: Anthropologie | Groom’s Attire: Jos. A. Bank Suit, J.Crew Tie | Groomsmen Attire: Jos. A Bank Suit, Tie from The Tie Bar

lisa Written with love by Lisa
9 Comments
  1. avatar Devid Clark reply

    I’d Like the white Wedding Dress, Absolutely stunning.

  2. avatar Kelly Foster reply

    So excited to see Riley and Bryant’s wedding on your website !! The only magazine I bought after Riley got engaged was Southern Weddings ~ it was all the inspiration I needed !! What a joy it was creating this special wedding for them. I had so many amazing friends help me with collecting decor … the vintage books, the antlers, and the 200 antique china dessert plates for the cake table. Our family all loaded the UHaul on July 4th to take all the decor from our home to the reception. It was so reassuring that Riley trusted me with all the details of their special day. Our photographer, Kassie, did an incredible job of capturing all the emotions of the day ~ Amanda from We Plus You Florists designed the most amazing bouquets and flowers for the day, Grit and Gold was the “day of ” planner, The Cake Guys cakes were delicious, Emily Meyers and Courtney Binkle were so much help with signage and construction DIY, Founder’s Chapel was so intimate and Joe T Garcia’s was the perfect setting for the celebration !! It was just a magical day …
    Kelly ~ mother of the bride

  3. avatar Leila reply

    Riley looked stunning with her handsome groom! This was such a gorgeous wedding and couple! Every detail was lovingly planned by the MOB Kelly Foster. Kelly did such a wonderful job of personalizing the wedding and reception with vintage creative touches. Loved seeing this wedding on Southern Weddings!

  4. avatar Blair Erickson reply

    Love this wedding! SUPER cute and the picture of her walking in….I can’t even handle it. So adorable!

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  6. avatar Dana reply

    seriously love his boutonniere!

  7. avatar Lotus Eyes Photography reply

    Love all the light beautiful colors, and rustic look.

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