From the bride’s gorgeous lace gown to the elegantly rustic ceremony backdrop, this Nashville wedding is beyond beautiful and romantic – not to mention the whole thing was captured by Elizabeth Messina, my dear friend (and wedding photographer!). Breathtaking is really the only word. There are literally hundreds of jaw dropping photos of this wedding; do yourself a favor and check them out in the gallery…
The bride’s bouquet incorporated peonies, garden roses, ranunculus, anemones, and jasmine. I love the way the deep burgundy ranunculus and black anemone centers add depth to the pale pink and white blooms.
Says the on-site planner: “Romantic blossoms in pastel pinks and ivory were displayed in our collection of pink depression glass, medicine bottles and milk glass, for simple yet magically romantic decor. Heather added additional texture to the tabletops with pale pink tulle overlays and slate heart table numbers [from BHLDN].” A garland of cascading ribbons adorned the back of the bride’s chair.
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? John and I love to travel and on one of our trips we fell in love with the city of Nashville. We decided it would be the perfect destination for our wedding. We wanted our wedding weekend to reflect us as a couple, letting our guests experience the city as we would, exploring the local sights and culinary scenes in the days leading up to the wedding. We fell in love with the simple charm and beauty of Cedarwood. Their all inclusiveness allowed us to plan the wedding from afar, focusing on the details that mattered most to us – photography, food and the overall comfort of our guests, letting the rest fall into place.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?We envisioned an intimate outdoor wedding surrounded by the beautiful Southern landscape and antebellum charm of Cedarwood. Rustic Southern elegance was our vision, balancing the femininity of blush and lace with slate. Fall being our favorite season, we incorporated mercury glass pumpkins in the decor and had tiny pies in mason jars for favors.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? We were engaged for four years before saying I do and everything about that day was so memorable, from the first looks to saying our vows with only our closest family and friends as witnesses. I had an overwhelming joy and childlike giddiness that come over me the whole day. I was just so happy to be marrying my one and only love and best friend.
Says the bride: “Andrew and I met through Teach for America. We were both assigned to teach in Kansas City and actually met while doing our training in Los Angeles. We both ended up teaching 5th grade and got to know each other throughout our teaching.”
The bride’s mom took on lots of DIY projects for the wedding, including custom cornhole boards, flower arrangements, and homemade jam favors in strawberry and apricot. A friend of the couple created all of the wedding day signage.
Why did you choose this location for your wedding?We wanted to choose a location that our family and friends could spend the weekend relaxing and celebrating together. We also loved the beautiful barn and outdoor setting.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? We focused on bringing together our family and friends. The bride’s mom Nancy served as the creative force being all of the thoughtful details for our wedding day.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? Spending the evening celebrating and dancing with our family and friends!
What advice do you have for other brides? To utilize the amazing talents of your family and friends to help make your day special. From jam making to flower arranging, our family and friends played a huge part in making every part of our wedding amazing!
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? Our wedding was on the Sunday of Labor day weekend and out of town for most of our guests. Our rehearsal dinner included most of our guests, which turned our wedding day into more of a weekend. We loved being able to spend so much time celebrating with those we love!
Wanting a small, intimate wedding, Sam and Reid headed to Wales, where they were wed under a canopy of umbrellas in a sweet little garden, surrounded by their closest friends and family. The bride wore her mother’s dress and a ring of flowers in her hair; the groom wore a key on his lapel. Select vendor Kate Murphy was there to photograph everything, from the big moments to the little details.
Says the bride: “Although we wanted a relaxed and low-key wedding, the small details were important to me, and I took extra care with them. There was a hint of a “Secret Garden” theme, as this story was very special to me and my mother who passed away 5 years ago. My sister-in-law made my beautiful bridal headpiece with tiny keys woven into it, and the men’s boutonnieres were keys as well (alluding to finding the key to the secret garden).”
“The flowers for the table and my bouquet were gathered on the morning of the wedding from the nearby fields and arranged by my good friend Rachel, who also set the table with beautiful books, tea cups and doilies that belonged to my grandmother. Our family style dinner was made that day by our parents and friends. It was all a labor of love that we are so incredibly grateful for. The efforts of our loved ones resulted in a day that was deeply personal.”
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? “Why Wales?” We got that question so many times I started betting people I could guess what their first question would be after I told them where Reid and I had decided to get married. We chose Wales for a few reasons: 1. We wanted a very small, intimate wedding; 2. We figured the best way to do this was to have a wedding very far away; and 3. We know people in Wales and believed their beautiful home, garden and village would be the perfect setting. Dwygyfylchi (prounced Dew-guh-vul-key) is a little village in North Wales tucked into the mountains near the sea. It has a charm, a rugged beauty and a family that I adore dearly…and I knew all of those components would magically meld to create the wedding of our dreams.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day?It is so hard to choose one moment, as they were all so dear to us. I think my favorite part of the day was dinner. Originally we had planned to eat outside on the terrace overlooking the garden, but because of the rain we relocated to the dining room. We cobbled together two long tables into one giant square table we all sat around. It was a family style dinner, with delicious homemade food that had been lovingly prepared that morning. We were able to relax, laugh, talk and eat with everyone since we were all so close together around the table. It was intimate and lovely.
Did you include any traditions in your wedding? We did things a little differently for most of our wedding decisions, from having a destination wedding to making all our own food to gathering our own flowers. But I did wear my mother’s wedding dress, which was one of the most special aspects of the wedding to me, as she couldn’t be there with us.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? Be in the moment. Don’t get sucked into all of the details that can take time and attention away from just being present. And don’t get upset over the things that happen that you didn’t count on and can’t change. It’s better to laugh and move on than get upset on what’s supposed to be one of the happiest days of your lives.
What advice do you have for other brides? Stick up for what you really want. It was very difficult to tell our extended families that we were getting married overseas and only inviting our parents as family. But because of certain family dynamics, it was what was going to be best and least stressful for us as a couple. As a bride, you get advice coming at you from all directions, but you really have to be true to yourself and not be bowled over by everyone else’s opinions of what your wedding should be. Make it what you want.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides?Spend your money on what’s important to you. Being photographers ourselves, photos were the most important investment to us, so we put most of our budget there and then had our close friends and family help with everything else. But DEFINITELY invest in a wonderful photographer.
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? Being photographers ourselves, our photographer choice was of utmost importance to us, so we asked the incomparable Kate Murphy, who captured the moments, big and small, with such grace and perfection. And our dear friends Jeremiah and Rachel Spray (the same Rachel who styled everything!) created a beautiful video for us that transports us back to the day immediately.
The groom’s jacket was lined with a blue paisley pattern, and embroidered with his monogram. His shirt cuffs were also monogrammed. The bride carried her something blue with her bouquet: “My grandmother gave me a blue handkerchief that belonged to my great grandmother,” says the bride. ”Coming from a long line of incredibly strong, compassionate and beautiful women, this was an important tradition to include in our ceremony. I wrapped the handkerchief around my bouquet and smiled every time that I looked at it knowing that my great grandmother was a part of our ceremony.”
Some advice from the bride: “Right before our outdoor ceremony, a terrible storm passed through. Despite the perceived misfortune, it allowed all of our guests some extra time to spend with each other and enjoy a drink, it afforded me some extra time with my best friends in the entire world, and it gave Greg some extra time with his brother and friends. What seemed like an absolute disaster turned into a true blessing. So, no matter what comes your way at your wedding, just remember that you get to marry your best friend. And everyone will always find a way to have a great time!”
A few fun details from the reception: Mad-Lib inspired cards took the place of a guest book; guests enjoyed cigars hand-rolled on site; favors were jars of homemade dilly beans (spicy pickled green beans).
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? Greg and I really wanted a location where our friends and family could enjoy exclusive use of the property and unwind for the weekend, sort of like a mini vacation. The Clifton Inn provided the perfect combination of a picturesque landscape, excellent service and accommodations, and superb food. Greg and I spent our first weekend at The Clifton Inn in April and we fell in love with everything about it.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? Greg and I realized the weddings we’d attended that were designed for everyone to spend time together were those that we most enjoyed. Since our wedding was over Labor Day weekend, we tried to plan events that everyone could enjoy. Greg’s parents hosted welcome cocktails for all of our guests on Friday evening, our friends spent time at the pool on Saturday during the day, and we encouraged all of our guests to check out everything else that Charlottesville had to offer, from the shops downtown to the local wineries. Looking back, it was perfect. Even if Greg and I didn’t get a chance to spend a lot of time with each guest on our wedding night, we were able to spend quality time with them at other times throughout the weekend.
What was your favorite moment or part of the day? It is hard to pick a favorite moment or part of the day from such a wonderful weekend, but Greg and I both loved the half hour we got to spend alone on the morning of our wedding. We each woke up early and played a friendly game of cornhole on the front lawn of the Inn. It was the only part of the day before we were married where it was just the two of us and it was the perfect moment together before the craziness of the day began.
What was the best advice you received as a bride? The best advice I received came from one of my best friends that had just gotten married the prior year. She told me to make a point of spending a few moments alone during the reception. Shortly after the dancing started, we grabbed hands and a plate of mini desserts and snuck into the backyard for a few moments together. From where we stood, we could watch everyone dancing under the lights. It was such a treat to enjoy that romantic moment alone with my new husband in the midst of so many people that loved us. I will always cherish this advice because you really do spend so little time alone on your wedding day. That moment for us will last a lifetime.
What advice do you have for other brides? It might sound cliché, but really, whatever happens, go with the flow and stay calm. Also, hire a wedding planner! I could not have survived the wedding planning process without our amazing planner.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? You have to sit down and give serious thought to what is most important to you. If you splurge on everything, you will far exceed your budget. So pick out the one, two, or three most important aspects of the wedding to you and your husband-to-be and splurge on those areas. If it does not make the list, then you have to be flexible. For example, I always thought that I wanted a band at my wedding. We have been to many weddings where the band really made the reception. But, when Greg and I assessed what was most important to us, a band did not make the list. We decided to go with a DJ and it could not have been a better decision. We were able to stay closer within our budget, and most importantly, our DJ was fantastic!
Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day? After our reception, we hosted a late night celebration at the pool with drinks and snacks. Greg and I didn’t hesitate to swap out our wedding gear for bathing suits so that we could spend a little more time with our guests. For me, this really symbolizes the entire weekend for us. We had such a great time celebrating this incredibly momentous occasion with everyone that had helped us to become the people that we were, individually, and together. We soaked up every moment of it!
Emily and Andy’s wedding is so totally timeless – classic wedding style at it’s loveliest! And with a gorgeous indoor venue, the rainy day couldn’t put a damper on their celebration. Beautiful photos by Nancy Ray, and planning and design by Rebecca Rose Events.
“If I had to choose a favorite moment, I would say our first look,” says the bride. “It seemed magical! Our wedding day was gray and rainy, but when it was time for our first look, the rain stopped and we were able to have it outside. It was such a special and intimate moment for the two of us. I replay it often in my mind. Not to mention, these are by far my favorite pictures of the day.”
The best advice Emily received? “To stay present on the big day. I really tried to remember this because I’ve heard so many brides remark on how their day was such a blur. I have so many vivid snapshots of the day as I was able to stop and really take in moments like how I felt when I put my dress on, seeing the beautiful ballroom for the first time, how my dad smiled at me right before he walked me down the aisle, and how Andy tore up the dance floor!”
Why did you choose this location for your wedding? Andy and I are not from Winston-Salem, but it’s where we met and fell in love so we thought it was appropriate to get married here as well! We both pictured ourselves getting married in a church and when we stumbled upon Highland Presbyterian Church we thought it was perfect — traditional, simple, and it has a center aisle! We decided on Old Town Club as the venue for the reception because it is such an elegant, yet still functional venue.
What inspired you when you were planning your wedding? Honestly, there were a few adjectives I kept repeating to myself and to my fabulous wedding planner throughout the whole planning process which described how I wanted our wedding to look and feel: twinkly, soft, and romantic.
What advice do you have for other brides? Hire a wedding planner! It will make the big day that much more enjoyable because you and your family won’t have to worry about all of the moving parts that wedding planners are so good at taking care of.
Do you have any budget tips for other brides? It was really helpful for me to prioritize a few big ticket items which were important to me, like my dress, the band, and the photographer. After that, it makes all of the expenses less overwhelming because you know you have ensured things which are most important to you and it will be easier to compromise on the rest.