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.

33 comments posted +add a comment SEE MORE: Real Weddings
  1. Ms. Wife of the Year

    Very different. Very sweet! I love it all.

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  2. Aleah + Nick Valley

    This is incredibly charming! Her dresss + the peacock accents = so unique!

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  3. Emily

    This is SO sweet, and very inspiring. I got engaged in October, then immediately found an amazing job out of state, and now after 3 months, my job is moving me to San Fran! At this point I am done with planning and plotting, I just want a sweet, no-fuss affair just like this one! Congrats y'all!

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  4. ThiliBlooms

    they look SO in love :)beautiful wedding!have a wonderful weekend :)

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  5. Aevan Arts

    gorgeous! love the colour scheme and the bride's dress.

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  6. Transatlanticism

    I am from MS originally but married an Englishman :), we went back to MS for our wedding though and incorporated a few British aspects into the day, We tended to get a similar response to our ideas, of 'oh that's different!' too, but different is good! different means you've made the effort to make it your own! so well done! it looks like a lovely day! and I love what ya'all did with the Red Barn! It is a great blank canvas, and good for budget weddings too!!

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  7. Transatlanticism

    P.S. I really love their song choices!

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  8. Susan

    i love her dress!

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  9. Rachel E.

    You gotta love how happy they look. :-)

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  10. chelsea

    what an adorable couple! i love her attitude!! so great and so refreshing to hear.

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  11. christa elyce

    EEKS! I love the photos! I'm doing something different to my may wedding. Carnvial theme!!! of course everything is DIY and special projects and ordering! i know how tough putting together a wedding in 3 months is, but it's coming along great!!! but if you are a bride that is looking for something different you'll definately want to win MY GIVEAWAY that i have going on right now! For a gorgeous olive feathered veil! ENTER NOW!http://www.jemappelles-christa.com/2010/02/je-mappelles-christa-giveaway.html

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  12. Melia

    Anna and Walter, you are an inspiration — not only because you are perfect for each other, but also because you did your wedding exactly the way you wanted it, on a modest budget. Your photos are absolutely gorgeous and capture the color and originality of the wedding day — and the fun that everyone was having. I will be taking a cue from you when planning my own Jackson wedding!

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  13. Jean Kallina

    I really enjoyed this post! Great looking couple, and I loved everything about it. The venue, the napkins, the photos… it is all great!

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  14. Meg Fickling Pearson

    So sweet

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  15. Miss B

    This wedding was adorable + original. They seem genuinely in love and happy.

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  16. Mariam

    You were right – love it! :)

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  17. Anonymous

    Wow! The happiness of this couple just radiates throughout these photos. Thanks for the smile!

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  18. Secret Leaves

    How much fun! I love the colors and the location. Everything here is pretty nearly perfect. Congratulations to the happy couple!Sharon

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  19. Sarah

    i loved your comment on how people would always says "oh, that's different!" and you're like, "so, who cares??" ! i totally feel like "that's different" is like the P.C. phrase for "ew, you're weird" or something like that. i recently encountered this in a similar life situation, and you know what, people just need to learn that everyone is has different wants & desires, and traditional ones are no more right than non-traditional ones. get over it, people!!! :)

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  20. handmade romance

    so adorable and charming. i had a tear in my eye after pic 4 and i hadnt even read a word. love this xx

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  21. GritsAndSoul

    Thanks for the lovely comments everyone! I'm glad you had a good time looking through the pictures. We had such a fun, wonderful, blissful wedding day. The best part was there was so much laughter throughout the day – that's what it was all about. Enjoying the moment. And however you choose to do it is Ok! You can see our engagement shots on my blog if you want: http://www.gritsandsoul.comSarah – You're right. When people would say "that's different," it wasn't meant as a compliment. But the entire day was 100% US and you do just have to let those comments roll off your back.Snippet and Ink – Thanks again! And you are the best :)

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  22. Kathryn

    Yay! Thank you Anna – it's always so nice when I get to feature a wedding with fun details and so much obvious love in the photos!

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  23. Christina

    This is a fabulous wedding! Omgoodness, this is just a beautiful wedding! And that dress… Swoon!: )

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  24. Aliza Werner

    How gorgeous and original! Love the brown and pops of blue and burnt orange. Truly a new take on fall colors. No matter the colors, their excitement and happiness radiate through all of the photos. Beautiful!

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  25. jessica lynn

    every bit of this wedding is so gorgeous and sweet! i love that they couldnt wait to tie the knot!

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  26. Kristen

    Thank you for featuring such a stylish, awesome, plus size bride! It's wonderful inspiration. :)

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  27. Emily

    I hardly ever comment but I just wanted to say that I ADORE her bouquet, especially next to her brown gown. Lovely!!

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  28. Starry Night Design Studio

    This wedding is so sweet and charming. The couple is obviously in love and having a very good time – what the day is all about!Thanks for sharing!

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  29. Anna Rapp

    What a beautiful story!!!I LOVE IT!!!http://frandsenexpansion.blogspot.com/

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  30. Amanda

    Definitely one of the top real weddings I've seen! I love fall/winter weddings, esp. ones that have some unique colors. The venue is amazing! That's so the kind of place I would love. I love the dress and the fall colors with the jewel colors. Beautiful!

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  31. Whitney

    The third picture made me tear up. This wedding is absolutely beautiful and sweet. You can really tell how much the couple love each other, and that just makes everything so vibrant and fun! I love everything about all of this!

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  33. GiantInvitations

    Aww… the groom was in tears when he saw his bride! What an emotional moment! Nicely captured! :)

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