I always say that if I’d gotten married during warmer months, I would have had a picnic wedding – they’re just so perfectly laid back and charming! Promise, once you see Jen and Jesse’s wedding you’ll start dreaming of a picnic celebration, too.

SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR ALL THE IMAGES FROM THIS DIY PICNIC WEDDING IN RHODE ISLAND.

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The Ceremony

“Our marriage counselors helped a lot with outlining our ceremony and deciding what and who to include,” says Jen. “Jesse and I then spent hours writing the actual script of the ceremony including our own custom vows and declarations. We were inspired by the wedding ceremonies of family members and friends as well as the values and ideas we learned from the Bible through our counseling. It was important to us to have a simple ceremony: one that conveyed the seriousness of the promise being made, while still being filled with joy.”

 

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Your ceremony in three words.  Relaxed. Thoughtful. Personal.

What was your favorite thing about your wedding ceremony?  Jesse and I picked two readings from the Bible that represented our values when it comes to marriage. Our favorite part of the ceremony was having our moms do those readings. For a moment, it allowed us to relax and focus on something other than ourselves.

Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  We finished the ceremony with a unity tree planting. We planted a tree together with soil from the home I grew up in and water from the house Jesse grew up in.

Anything else?  Jesse’s brother played acoustic guitar for the ceremony music. // The backdrop to the wedding ceremony was magical. It was set inside of an ivy-covered cedar grove that was made even more green by the brief rain that fell just before the ceremony.

 

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The Reception

“As Jesse and I arrived at the Eliot Hotel in Boston on our wedding night, we could not think of a single thing we would change about the day. And a month later we still feel the same way. As we planned our tiny wedding over the span of nine months, we knew we wanted to stray away from a lot of wedding traditions that people seem to do simply because tradition compels them. We didn’t have a giant wedding party, dancing, a DJ, or a bar. Instead we modeled our wedding after our first date: a picnic with sandwiches, cheeses, fruit salad, lawn games, and chatting on a blanket for hours. We really did not discuss any other options when it came to the theme of our wedding; it was such an obvious decision for us. ”

 

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Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  From the time we got engaged, we had planned on having our wedding at Jesse’s family home. But 6 weeks before the wedding those plans fell through and we had to scramble to find a new venue. We were blessed to have Jesse’s family friends offer their beautiful property to us. We were able to pick up our wedding plans and move them to the King’s Cottage with almost no changes. Jesse and I always pictured having a backyard wedding and the King’s Cottage gave us just that: the backyard of all backyards. The result was even better than we’d planned.

Tell us about your reception!  We invited our 60 guests to be adventurous and picnic with us. We all sat on blankets or picnic tables while munching on sandwiches from our favorite bakery, Flour. Afterwards we broke open a piñata and played lawn games together – Jesse and I have always enjoyed playing lawn games at events in the past, so we asked a few friends to bring their favorite games with them, like croquet, bocce, and kubb. The soundtrack of the day was a giant playlist created by Jesse and me with a lot of our favorite artists like Iron & Wine, Matt Pond PA, Fleet Foxes, and Elijah Wyman. For our guest book we set out an iPad and asked everyone the take videos of themselves for us, the end result was amazing and hilarious. As it got cooler later in the day, everyone was able to sit by the fire and roast marshmallows for s’mores, ending our wedding on a low-key note.

Are there any other special details we should know about?  One of my favorite details from the wedding were the plants; the florals were one thing I knew I wanted to do myself. I planted tons of succulents in pots that my mother and I painted. I made the bouquets myself with flowers from Trader Joe’s and Whole Foods. // My other favorite detail was the weather — as New Englanders we were so thankful for 60/70 degree weather. There was a light drizzle just before I finished getting ready and it poured as we drove into Boston at the end of the day, but otherwise the weather was absolutely perfect.

Menu:  Sandwiches (Herbed Tuna, Grilled Chicken, Hummus & Veggie) // Chips, Fruit Salad // Watermelon, Earl Grey Cookies, Almond Cake with Vanilla Buttercream

 

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Firm Anchor | Snippet & Ink Firm Anchor | Snippet & Ink

 

What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  Our favorite moment was getting to smash the piñata with the rest of our wedding party.

What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Some of the best advice that I received from my mom while planning (and feeling stressed) was that we are just planning a party, to celebrate love with people we love, and that no one is coming to our wedding to point out imperfections.

What advice do you have for other couples in the midst of planning a wedding?  I think something that we can’t mention too many times to couples planning a wedding is that it’s okay to take a break from planning. Have a date night where you don’t talk about the wedding. Jesse and I also recommend pre-marital counseling to any couple planning to get married. For us counseling brought us closer together and allowed us to talk about difficult topics in the right environment.

Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  Use your skills and the skills and generosity of your family and friends. Some examples: Jesse’s brother played acoustic guitar for our ceremony music; our venue is the home of a family friend; our marriage counselor coordinated our reception; I did all of the florals and decorations myself; and Jesse did all of the music preparation and vendor coordinating. We felt that we should only pay for things that we couldn’t do ourselves or with the help of family and friends. Jesse and I spent countless hours designing, making and setting up everything, but it all came together with the help and support of our friends and family — I could write a novel about all of the people who helped with absolutely everything.

 

Firm Anchor | Snippet & Ink Firm Anchor | Snippet & Ink
Firm Anchor | Snippet & Ink Firm Anchor | Snippet & Ink
Photography: Firm Anchor / Venue: private residence in Providence, Rhode Island / Bride’s Dress: Beatriz, J.Crew / Shoes: Latigo via Anthropologie / Cuff: Alkemie / Earrings: Fossil / Headpiece: Whichgoose / Groom’s Suit: Proper Suit / Shirt: Proper Cloth / Shoes: Allen Edmonds / Calligraphy: Cindy Pendergast / Rentals: Sunshine Tent Rentals / Catering: Flour Bakery / Cake: Cake Monstah / Hair: Maddie Harkins, The Beauty Lounge at Magnolia
SEE THE FULL GALLERY
  • DIY Picnic Wedding from Firm Anchor

    13 August 2014
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    Ellen and Patrick’s wedding was a beautiful blend of urban industrial and feminine romance, inspired by their unique venue, the Grand Rapids Downtown Market. Also, you will never believe it but the bride’s gorgeous dress only cost $300! Read on for all the details from this gorgeous celebration.

    SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS MODERN ROMANTIC WEDDING IN GRAND RAPIDS.

    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink

     

    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  The Market was a convenient location for both our ceremony and reception. We love the clean, industrial feel, not to mention we love to eat and shop at our local market so it was a perfect fit. We also liked the idea of an urban wedding. We were so inspired by our wedding planner, Rhiannon from Hey Gorgeous Events. She is so talented and she truly helped us find inspiration in the Market and brought our wedding dreams to life.

     

    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
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    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Yes! We had a Scottish bagpiper play for our recessional. He played and walked us from the altar to the reception which is a tradition in Pat’s family.

     

    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
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    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  There were so many special details, it’s hard to choose! But our guests really enjoyed the two signature drinks: mint infused non-alcoholic iced tea and rosemary infused lemonade with vodka. We also chose a Michigan-themed coffee table book as our guest book which was both meaningful and original.

     

    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink

     

    What was your favorite moment or part of the day?  Our first dance! We danced to “Love on Top” by Beyonce and it was SO MUCH FUN! It marked the true beginning of our wedding celebration.

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The best advice I received was that as soon as the rehearsal dinner starts you are not allowed to stress or worry because the party has officially started.

    What advice do you have for other brides?  Try bridesmaid dresses on that you like and see if they carry them in white/ivory. It may not sound very special but it’s a huge cost savings and there’s much more variety of dress styles and designs to choose from. // Hire a wedding planner. As a major stress reducer and a true quality-of-life boost, it’s well worth the price. Plus they can help you maximize your budget and alleviate a lot of the financial uncertainty.

    Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  As a bride without a mother, I was very emotional about celebrating my wedding without her. I can honestly say it was the best day of my life and I know she would have wanted me to enjoy it. For those out there who are missing loved ones, know that you will survive and you must make the most of the situation. Have fun and enjoy every moment in honor of those you have lost.

     

    Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink Bradley James, Hey Gorgeous Events | Snippet & Ink
    Photography: Bradley James / Event Planning & Design, Floral Design: Hey Gorgeous Events / Venue: Grand Rapids Downtown Market in Grand Rapids, Michigan / Officiant: Gust Bassianotis / Dress: Badgley Mischka / Shoes: Stuart Weitzman via Zappos / Earrings: Kate Spade / Suits: Jos A Bank / Shirt: Kenneth Cole / Tie: Skinny Tie / Stationery: Val Marie Paper / Rentals: Cascade Rental Center, Refunction Junktion Vintage Rentals / Music: Adrian Butler / Catering, Cake: Amway Hotel
    SEE THE FULL GALLERY
  • Modern Michigan Wedding from Bradley James

    11 August 2014
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    Cara and Matt’s wedding epitomizes the impact of choosing a spectacular venue – what could possibly match the drama and beauty of dogwood tress in full bloom?! And of course it never hurts to hire a photographer like Marta Locklear, who can preserve those memories in beautiful images like these…

    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink
    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink
    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink

    “My favorite part of the day,” says Cara, “was the moment when I was walking down the aisle with my Dad, I looked up and saw everyone that Matt and I love looking right back at me. All of the people who have shaped our lives for so many years had all gathered there on that day to celebrate us and our love for each other.”

    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink

    “Matt and I focused a lot on the feeling and the content of the wedding ceremony. We wanted everyone there to feel love – for their spouses, their families, and the friends in their life. We hand picked readings, songs, and specific parts of the ceremony that meant something to us. I wanted all of our family members to play a role. Matt and I had our brothers escort our mothers during the ceremony and helped them to light the unity candles. The readings were done by my brother, sister, and Matt’s brother. My sister-in-law sang ‘All of Me’ and ‘Simple Gifts’ during the ceremony.”

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    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink
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    “Matt rented a 1960 Rolls Royce to take us around town after the ceremony in order to get some pictures and just have a moment to ourselves. I have always loved classic cars and felt like royalty riding in it!”

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    “Our fathers used their handiwork to help with our wedding decor,” says Cara. Her father made table number posts, and Matt’s father made the large M & C initials.

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    Other DIY elements included table assignments painted on window frames, centerpiece doilies crocheted by the bride’s mother, and mason jars “punch glasses” decorated by the bride and her sister. The couple had two signature drinks: an Old Fashioned (Maker’s Mark Whiskey, bitters, orange zest, and a sugar cube) and “The Attention Seeker” (vodka, rosé, lemon juice, honey, rosemary sprigs).

    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink
    Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink Marta Locklear | Snippet & Ink

    SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS TIMELESS VIRGINIA WEDDING.

     

    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  The Virginia Center for Architecture is in a building also known as the Branch House. It is a beautiful mansion formerly owned by a prestigious couple in Richmond, turned into a museum in the heart of the Monument Avenue Historic District. We picked the venue because of the historic nature of it, along with the beautiful courtyard in the back lawn. The windows and hardwood floors inside just spoke of long-standing romance.

    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  I grew up in Western Pennsylvania where it was a tradition to have a cookie table for dessert and a take-home treat for your guests. Family members and friends of the bride and groom will get together and make a variety of cookies to bring to the wedding. It is a common occurrence to see guests heading to the cookie table before dinner is even served!

    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  One of my favorite parts of the decor for the wedding was the family photo table. Matt and I gathered photos of our parents and grandparents from their weddings, put them in frames, and labeled them along with their anniversary dates. We chose the date of our wedding because it was Matt’s parents 38th wedding anniversary.

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  The night before the wedding, I received a note from my sister. Part of it said, “At some point during the wedding and reception, stop and take a minute for yourself. Just look around and take it all in. The music, the laughter, the room, and all of the people that are surrounding you guys on your first day of marriage. Enjoy your guests, but make sure that you and Matt steal little moments away and for each other during the evening.” This advice resonated with me, and I made sure that I did just that. Just stop, look around, and enjoy every minute of it.

    What advice do you have for other brides?  Make your wedding day fit your personality. There are so many dresses, vendors, decorations out there to choose from. You can easily get lost in ideas and second guess your choices. Go with the first one that “fits” and that makes you smile. Be happy and confident about your decisions because they were inspired by you. Also, I have to say that the best money that I spent on the wedding day was for my day-of wedding coordinator. She allowed me to relax and just enjoy the day.

    Is there anything else that helps tell the story of the day?  The guest of honor at our wedding was our brand new niece, Joy. She was born exactly one week before the wedding! She was all dressed up in her satin pink dress and was on the dance floor all night long!

    Photography: Marta Locklear / Event Planning: Christine Rice, RSVP Consultants / Venue: Virginia Center for Architecture in Richmond, Virginia / Officiant: Carol Ogburn, Joseph Dalla Valle / Dress: Bella Rosa Bridal / Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Veil: Sibo Designs / Brides Accessories: Tiffany / Shirt, Suit: Hugo Boss / Tie, Shoes: Franco’s Fine Clothier / Stationery: Minted / Floral Design: Green Flamingo / Rentals: The Prop Shop / Music: Rich Barry, Choice Entertainment / Catering: White House Catering / Cake: The Buttercream Bee / Hair: 1213 Salon

    Minted is a sponsor of Snippet & Ink.

    SEE THE FULL GALLERY
  • Virginia Dogwood Wedding from Marta Locklear

    22 July 2014
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    Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink

    Garden setting, lush greenery, beautiful spring day… Emily and Mike were wed at the Inn at Park Winters in Northern California, and photographer Laura Nelson was there to capture the day with these timeless images…

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    Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink

    Greenery and foliage played a central role in the wedding decor, starting with the watercolor invitations by Kae & Ales.

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    Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink

    Bridesmaids wore gray, sage, and emerald green chiffon dresses, perfectly complementing the shades of gray and green in their bouquets.

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    The bride’s favorite part of the day? “I can truly say that I loved every moment of my wedding; it really was my favorite day! But if I had to be specific, I really enjoyed being surrounded by my family and friends, all of who were genuinely excited to share in our joy. Another favorite little moment was when we were pronounced husband and wife. My husband and I waited to have our first kiss on our wedding day and it was so special for us!”

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    Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink Laura Nelson | Snippet & Ink

    SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS CALIFORNIA WEDDING AT THE INN AT PARK WINTERS.

     

    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  When we began the planning process, we wanted a venue that would be the perfect backdrop for our wedding festivities. We chose words like lush, clean, and natural to describe our dream venue and when we found Park Winters, we knew it would be the perfect fit. We believed that investing into a gorgeous venue meant we would have to bring in fewer outside elements to complete the overall look.

    What inspired you when you were planning your wedding?  We really liked the idea of a simple and neutral wedding, with an emphasis on lush greenery. We wanted minimal details that were thoughtful and intentional.

    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Overall, our wedding was quite traditional, but it was also very genuine and heartfelt.

    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  Our love for coffee prompted us to set up a coffee bar complete with custom hand-stamped cups and bags of coffee beans for guests to take home and enjoy. We also foraged for all of the greenery for our wedding. All of the greenery came from the yard of a family member or dear friend.

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  Don’t let anything ruin your joy. No matter what may go wrong, or maybe if things just don’t go exactly as planned, remove yourself and just enjoy the day.

    What advice do you have for other brides?  Absolutely hire a wedding planner and a stylist. Having someone who knows the ins and outs of the industry and whose style and decision making skills you trust and admire will prove invaluable throughout the planning process.

    Do you have any budget tips for other brides?  Decide ahead of time what elements are important to you. Invest your money on things that will last instead of little details that will likely be forgotten by you and your guests.

    Photography: Laura Nelson / Venue: Inn at Park Winters in Winters, California / Planning, Styling, Stationery, Floral Design: Kae & Ales / Dress: La Sposa / Shoes: J. Crew / Hair Piece: Twigs and Honey / Suit: J. Crew  / Bridesmaid Dresses: J. Crew / Groomsmen Suits: H&M / Band: The Suspenders 
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  • Inn at Park Winters Wedding from Laura Nelson

    16 July 2014
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    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink

    Always a treat to feature a wedding from our friends at A Bryan Photo, and these images really capture the energy of the couple and the day. Not to mention, when the bride is a planner for boutique planning studio, Mariée Ami, you know it’s going to be a gorgeous, glamorous celebration!

    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink
    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink

    Louise wore a stunning gown by Lela Rose, accented with a chapel length veil and phalaenopsis orchids in her hair. Bridesmaids wore a mix of gray and navy chiffon gowns by Amsale.

    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink
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    The bride shares about the decision to get married at Mobile’s Christ Church Cathedral: “There was no question as to where we were getting married. I love my hometown and my parents would not have had it any other way. Billy and I were married in my childhood church were I was baptized and confirmed.”

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    As a planner, Louise had a very clear vision for the design of the wedding: “We always dreamed of being married in a large tent over looking the water. While an outdoor wedding in August was out of the question, a tent was still something I wanted, so we created that feel inside. I new I wanted navy as the basis of the wedding. I also love a mix of garden-like design and straight line modern pieces. I love the crispness of true white and the preppy touch of boxwoods and ribbon.”

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    “Our friends and family love good food, but they also love to talk and drink. We had three huge square tables in the middle of the reception that allowed for guests to pick and eat directly from the tables. Oyster, shrimp, tuna, hot sausage with melted cheese, a variety of salads and antipasti presentations, and we couldn’t end the night without the groom’s favorite thing: mini fried chicken pieces on Sister Schubert rolls and beignets covered in powdered sugar!”

    Signature drinks were an Arnold Palmer for the groom and vodka milkshakes for the bride.

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    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink
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    Doesn’t this photo look like it could have come from the 1950s?! I love it! The classic wedding cake was decorated with a lattice pattern and sugar calla lilies. Says Louise, “Both the wedding cake and groom’s cake were served on large silver trays that have been in my family for years. The tablecloths for the cakes were also meaningful family heirlooms. I was also given a toasting cup from my grandmother that both she and my mother used at their wedding receptions.”

    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink
    A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink A Bryan Photo | Snippet & Ink
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    SEE THE FULL GALLERY FOR MORE IMAGES FROM THIS GLAMOROUS ALABAMA WEDDING FROM A BRYAN PHOTO AND MARIEE AMI.

     

    Why did you choose this location for your wedding?  We chose to get married in August for a few reasons. We didn’t want a long engagement, a wedding during football season was out of the question, and, as a wedding planner, it was the only open weekend I had. I was worried about the heat in Mobile in August, so we choose an indoor venue rather than the outdoor bay wedding I had always dreamed of. Fort Whiting was the largest indoor venue we could find and I knew we could accomplish exactly what we wanted in the big open space.

    Did you include any traditions in your wedding?  Billy and I decided not to see each other before the ceremony and wait for that moment of walking down the aisle to see each other.

    Please tell us about any special details from your wedding.  When it came to the details my mind was going 100 miles a minute. My favorite detail of the wedding was actually all the little gifts and favors we had. Hypercolor cups and linen cocktail napkins were two of my favorite reception details. The hotel gifts really came together well. I wanted to incorporate my dog into the details so we had a local artist do a sketch. We used this sketch on canvas bags for the hotel guests, frisbees that could be taken home by other fellow dog lovers, and koozies. The monogramed playing cards were a favorite find in the hotel bags. // I also loved the paintings that hung above the bars. They were painted by one of my best friends and bridesmaids, Liz Legg (Liz Legg Designs), and are now hanging in my home. I also gave my bridesmaids earrings from Liz’s jewelry collection that they wore on the wedding day! She is so talented! [Check out these great details in the gallery!]

    What was the best advice you received as a bride?  At the end of the day the most important thing is you will be married…. Don’t sweat the small things and enjoy every moment!

    What advice do you have for other brides?  Hire a wedding planner and do things differently from what you see all the time. Being a wedding planner by day, I did not do one thing from Wednesday on. With my team doing what they do every weekend, it was so nice to be the bride and let someone else handle the details!

     

    Louise and Billy’s wedding also appears in the current issue of Southern Weddings, which you can order right here!

    Photography: A Bryan Photo / Event Planning & Design: Mariée Ami / Venue: Fort Whiting in Mobile, Alabama / Church: Christ Church Cathedral / Officiant: Johnny Cook / Dress: Lela Rose, Spring from Ivory & White /  Shoes: Jimmy Choo / Veil: Ivory & White / Bridesmaid Dresses: Amsale / Ceremony Floral Design: Homer McClure, Ron Barrett / Reception and Personal Flower Floral Design: Buffy J. Hargett / Rentals: Event Rentals Unlimited / Music: Atlanta Showstoppers / Lighting: AG lighting / Catering: Morrissette & Company / Cake: Barb Sullivan / Hair: Greg Andrews / Makeup: Ashley Mitchell

    A Bryan Photo is a Snippet & Ink Select vendor. 

    SEE THE FULL GALLERY
  • Alabama Wedding from A Bryan Photo

    7 July 2014
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