Though one of the first inspiration boards I ever did had a lily-of-the-valley theme, I figure that was long enough ago that I could revisit it (and hopefully improve it) without boring too many folks. It’s a classic choice for weddings – it looks like teeny wedding bells, and is such a charming harbinger of Spring. It’s not the cheapest flower out there (um, at all), and it takes a ton of them to get any sort of volume, but just a few pips in your bouquet, sugar versions on your cake, or vintage millinery flowers on your ring pillow adds a touch of the classic and timeless.

Mood: traditional spring wedding
Palette: classic green and white

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Top row from left: bud vases with lily-of-the-valley from Rebecca Thuss, individual lily-of-the-valley favors from Martha Stewart, lily-of-the-valley boutonniere by Flowerwild
Row 2: ivy garland photo by Elizabeth Messina, cake decorated with sugar flowers via The Bride’s Guide
Row 3: flower girl and seating cards both from Martha Stewart Weddings, Jacqueline Bouvier
Row 4: ring pillow with vintage millinery lily-of-the-valley from Rebecca Thuss, lily-of-the-valley bouquet photo by Aaron Delesie, calligraphy on green envelope by Tara Jones

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Doesn’t this green remind you of the tiny leaf buds that start popping out in early spring? Inspired by this stunning photo of Vera Wang‘s green dress, I thought black slate (a sort of chalkboard gray) and leaf bud green would be a lovely and unexpected Spring palette, and a nice choice for the first inspiration board of March. It has a slightly modern feel that balances sweetly romantic details like bows and springerle cookies and vines, and I think it could work in a wide range of venues from an historic estate to an industrial loft.

Mood: romance with a modern twist
Palette: black slate, pastel spring green, cream white

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Top row from left: pale green Vera Wang dress from Charleston Weddings, centerpiece in zinc container by Dandelion Ranch, chalkboard in ornate frame from Blue Bell Bazaar
Row 2: gray bow corsage by A Alicia, veil from Charleston Weddings, springerle cake from Martha Stewart
Row 3: Amy Butler Design via The City Sage, customized gift bags by Laura Hooper*, bouquet by Ariella Chezar, photo with green grapes by Meg Matyia

*Snippet & Ink sidebar sponsor

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When Anna first got in touch with me, I loved being able to chat with her a bit about Mississippi (some of you who have been reading forever might remember that I taught kindergarten there for two years). She and Walter had such a charming wedding, planned in only three months. They got engaged in May 2009, and set a date for May 2010, but, Anna says:

As the summer wore on, we both got rather impatient. All the anticipation and planning was driving me bonkers. I was so over wedding planning – as much fun as planning can be, all of that lost importance compared to the simple fact that I wanted to share this important moment with him. We were so excited to make this commitment to each other – felt so fortunate that we found this kind of love – and decided that waiting was for the birds. Our families were going to officially meet each other over the Thanksgiving holiday, so we thought, “Why not go ahead and get married?!” So, we announced to everyone at the end of August that we had decided to move the date up. . . and had only three months to plan. . .

This was Anna’s second wedding, and she wanted something a bit different for her wedding dress, so she opted for a brown dress which fit perfectly with the autumn date. Her shoes brought in the jewel tones present throughout the wedding.

We wanted the ceremony site to have a “certain something” so we considered the Mississippi Agricultural and Forestry Museum. It is a fantastic location with several museums. It has lots of character designed to look like a late 19th century, early 20th century rural Mississippi town, recreated with authentic buildings like a General Store (complete with Moon Pies, Cheese Straws and Co-Colas), gas station, Masonic Lodge, Doctor’s office, a cotton gin, old tractors, a school room – and also a small Chapel. The chapel was just the right size for us, fitting 80-100 comfortably. The rich, dark wood on the interior was already so beautiful it really didn’t need much more decoration.

You’ll probably hear this a million times, but it’s true: make it your own. What shines through is who you are as a couple. The bridesmaids walked in to Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah,” I walked down the aisle to Rufus Wainwright’s song “Danny Boy” and we walked out as a married couple to the Peanuts “Linus and Lucy” theme. Everyone enjoyed it. So many times I heard, “Well, that’s different,” meaning untraditional. Too bad! That’s who we are.

Anna shares a bit about how they kept their food and drink within budget: The menu for our reception was Tex Mex – Walter is from Dallas and we wanted to incorporate a little Texas into our Deep South Mississippi affair – besides, we thought having tacos would be a great change of pace for everyone who had overdosed on Turkey and dressing! Our cocktail hour had roasted corn salsa and a savory Mexican cheesecake. Upstairs lunch was a taco bar and also quesadillas made right there. We had cupcakes in our favorite flavors, red velvet with cream cheese icing and German chocolate. They were divine! The only alcohol we had was a champagne toast. Walter and I didn’t want to break the bank with alcohol but I also don’t like the idea of a cash bar, so we invited our friends to bring wine or any sort of alcohol of their choosing if they decided they might want more to drink than a glass or two of champagne. Our friends were fine with it – and it turns out we had a lot of champagne left over, too.

Our DJ is a friend of ours named Daniel Guaqueta – he DJ’d a brunch for the film festival one year and it was so much fun. I’m a Classic Soul music fanatic – I’m from Memphis, home of Stax and Hi Records and worked for four years at Malaco Records here in Jackson. We compiled all our favorite soul songs – from Motown to Stax to Malaco, added some funk and others of our favorites from other genres, gave them to Daniel and he put together a great playlist. Everyone loved the music and danced for hours.

Photographer: Erin Fults

Custom napkins: Jean M

Ceremony venue: Mississippi Agriculture & Forestry Museum, Jackson, Mississippi

Reception venue: Northpointe Red Barn, (601) 991-9461

Bride’s dress / shoes:
Bari Jay / Sofft

Bride’s birdcage veil / fabric flower: Tessa Kim / Miss Ruby Sue

Groom’s suit / tie: Men’s Wearhouse / Belk

Bouquets / boutonnieres: Tulip Design Studio

Ceremony, reception decor: DIY

Catering: Catering by Debbie, 601-937-0630

Cupcakes: Viva La Cupcake, 601-278-1742

Happy, happy wishes to you Anna and Walter! Thank you so much for sharing your wedding with us, and for sharing so many great details about the day. And thank you to photographer Erin Fults for kindly sending over all of these great shots. You can also read tons more and find a link to a slideshow of even more photos from Anna and Walter’s wedding over on the Jackson Free Press site.

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Yesterday, one of my very dearest friends and I did a little cupcake taste test (which really just means we bought cupcakes from two places and ate them), so I’m not quite sure how the weekend could live up to that, except that I’ll be spending it with my honey, which is always a treat. I’ll also be keeping my fingers crossed for nice weather, because I’d love nothing more than to read one of my new book purchases out of doors. What are you up to this weekend? If you happen to be somewhere in New England, this pic for you. (Isn’t it just the cutest? Jeff Newsom takes amazing photos, and he shoots weddings, too…)

{by Jeff Newsom}

A touch of spring.

Send a garden through the mail, via Oh So Beautiful Paper.

Totally digging these engagement photos.

Happy blog birthday to 100 Layer Cake!

Lovely lips.

Pothole gardens, via Oh Joy!

50 steps to simple happiness, via A Cup of Jo.

Piano love.

John and Jackie.

I remembered this article, and now I’m dying to make some perfect chocolate chip cookies.

Have a happy weekend!

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