Just up the road from Charleston, on the South Carolina coast, there’s a little gem of town called Pawleys Island. It’s the epitome of a Lowcountry lifestyle…fresh seafood, laidback locals, Southern charm and the perfect mix of the ocean and marsh. It’s those qualites that Northeastern natives Samantha + Scott wanted to share with their wedding guests. The couple had recently relocated to Myrtle Beach and wanted their wedding to reflect their love for their new Lowcountry home. Samantha looked like the perfect Southern bride thanks to her gorgeous strapless gown from The Little White Dress and her fabulous up-do from R. Lozier Signature Salon. They selected the Reserve Harbor Yacht Club to host their ceremony and reception and this new wedding venue did not disappoint. One of our favorite photographers, Carolina Studios by Gillian Reinhardt, did her usual fabulous job capturing the Lowcountry entire affair. Their elegant poolside reception looked stunning with the help of a talented team of vendors, Greenskeeper Florist and The Trestle while Steve & Company kept the guests up and moving all night long!
Natalie + David translated their love for vintage European and Southern tradition into a beautiful Lowcountry wedding at the romantic Roseville Plantation in Florence, South Carolina. The couple enlisted a team of talented vendors to create their special day including the sought after duo of MCG Photography. Our blushing bride, Natalie, gave us an inside look into her once-in-a-lifetime afternoon…
Tell us about the proposal…
We both specialized in post-1660 British literature and enjoy old-fashioned charm and beautiful settings. Thus we love Jane Austen novels, and we’re members of the Middleton Place Foundation which helps to support the Middleton Place Plantation in Charleston. At Middleton Place we have an oak tree where we like to sit and spend time on the plantation grounds. We consider it “our tree,” if you will. It was while we were sitting under this tree that David proposed to me. He was actually so thoughtful about it that he proposed in both a traditional American way and in a nineteenth-century British way. He asked “Will you marry me,” and “Would you do me the honor of making me the happiest of men” while on bended knee. I was absolutely ecstatic and exclaimed, in between light yet passionate kisses, “Yes, yes, always, and forever and ever yes”!! We were engaged for exactly one year and celebrated our engagement anniversary and first day as spouses the day after our wedding under “our tree” at Middleton Place Plantation.
Out of the entire day, what was the most memorable moment?
It might sound trite, but in all honesty, the most memorable moment of the day was when we exchanged vows. We both kept crying tears of the deepest kind of joy.
What’s your favorite picture from your wedding?
Corrie and James of MCG Photography are such amazing photographers, it’s difficult to choose just one favorite. One that certainly is at the very top of our list, however, is the one of our first kiss as wife and husband. It really was such a magical moment.
Why did you choose to have A Lowcountry Wedding?
Since I grew up in the South, it’s easy to consider me a “southern belle,” and even though David is from Portland, Oregon, we both cherish the elegant, traditional, hospitable charm that the south has to offer.
How did you choose your venue?
We wanted to get married outside at a place that feels like it has southern and old-fashioned British charm, along with a sense of timelessness. We were thrilled when we found a plantation that met all criteria and even helped us to feel like we had stepped into the setting of nineteenth-century novel.
Tell us a little bit about your menu. Did you add any Lowcountry elements?
Since our wedding was in the afternoon, we just had heavy hors d’oeuvres in addition to the wedding cake, which had lace details and yellow roses, my favorite flower, to match my bouquet. Since I’m a vegetarian, and some of our friends are too, we served a variety of meat and vegetarian options. Favorites among the guests included the bacon-wrapped scallops and tea cookies cut in the shape of our initials, which both have Lowcountry flair. Seafood is popular in the Lowcountry, and tea cookies reflect the way that the south, especially areas like Charleston, continue to incorporate our British heritage while also celebrating particularly American twists. In the South, for instance, we drink a lot of tea, but instead of often serving it hot like the British, we usually serve it iced instead. Not surprisingly, we had plenty of both sweet and unsweet iced tea for guests to enjoy at the reception.
Your wedding was filled with gorgeous details. Did any have special meaning? What was your favorite?
Since we both specialized in post-1660 British literature, we wanted elements that reminded us of both the Romantic and Victorian Periods. Because of this we incorporated details such as cap sleeves and lace. My dress was mostly lace instead of satin and had cap sleeves. The Maids of Honor, too, had dresses with these elements. We also used lace to drape many of the tables, embellish the guest book, flower girl baskets, and ring bearer pillows, and wrap around the birdseed that guests tossed at us during our “grand exit.” Incorporating these kinds of details made the wedding excitingly feel “very us,” and carefully cutting piece after piece of lace with my mom is a part of the planning that I’ll always fondly remember.
Looking back on your engagement and wedding, is there any advice you would give to brides in the planning process?
Absolutely- It’s so easy to get caught up in what can seem like the million and a half details. With so many elements to choose and try to perfect, it’s really no wonder that there are countless programs, books, and magazines dedicated to planning a wedding. When planning gets stressful, it’s important to remind yourself what the day is really about. It’s not details like your shoes, the table drapes, and the design on the napkins that matter most, but the love that you and your fiancé share and are there to celebrate. The day is about that celebration and your devotion to one another, not how elaborately you can throw a party to please the guests. What you, and even your guests, will remember most are the moments that help express just how much you and your fiancé love each other. Keeping these thoughts in mind can help immensely when you and your fiancé are working your way through the stress of planning and after the wedding as well. No one, I imagine, wants to look back on her wedding day and remember it as the most stressful day of her life, but instead one of the happiest. Keep your focus on the love and happiness you and your fiancé share, and your wedding day will be one of the happiest days of your life, regardless of how any of the details unfold.
Beautiful bride Maggie tied the knot to her handsome husband, Mike, this past summer in an intimate ceremony on the grounds of North Carolina’s Burke Manor Inn where Faces in Focus Photography was on hand to capture the entire day. Maggie was kind enough to fill us in on all the details of her darling Southern Wedding!
Tell us a little bit about how you met your husband… My husband and I met on Match.Com…. Yup it really does work. I feel in love with a picture where the sun was in his eyes. That bald head of his was really the magic ticket. Honestly it does help that he is a sexy man, but his words in the profile he wrote went straight to my heart.
How did he propose? How long were you engaged for?
Mike proposed to me at Winter Green Ski Resort this past January. Martin Luther’s King’s birthday. A year prior he took me there as my first time ever to ski. I broke my ring finger. This January as we started to get all of our gear on he told me to wait a minute.. He walked into the bedroom came around the corner bent down on one knee and asked me to marry him. And I quote this is his proposal “even know that you are a pain in my ass, I love you more than life itself and cannot imagine my life without by my side” Will you marry me? AS I stand there in my ski wear with face and head gear on and he could not see my face. Only my eyes I was floored. Yeah we spoke of rings etc…. but never did I expect that. We were engaged for 7 months before we said our dos. And keep in mind that on our wedding day of August 27th we had a hurricane, Days prior a heart quake and one week to the day my father had a heart attack where he got two stints but in, but was still there to give me away and we had our very first dance EVER.
Your wedding was filled with gorgeous details. Did any have special meaning? What was your favorite? The flowers had special meaning. The girl who did them lived outside the box as I asked her to do. I gave her a clear canvas to show her talents but at the same time my touch. The flowers were done in Japanese lettering to match my shoulder tattoo. It means double happiness and love. And those are what we stood on when we said our own vows to each other. We did a sand ceremony as well that I wrote myself and the class that we poured our sand in matched the flowers and my tattoo.
How did you choose your venue? We choose the B&B to be sure that all of our family was together and not spread apart. As they come from far and in between we wanted our family close and to share memories and to make new ones.
Tell us a little bit about your menu… Well I am a very picky eater. And our family and friends all love meat and potatoes. So we had prime rib, salad, mixed garden veggies and a potato bar with all the fixings. It was delicious. There are still people talking about the food and it as over three months ago. We had wine imported in from our engagement night that we later found out that is not easy to find. We had NY wine sent to us as well. Each had a meaning and those were shared with everybody.
What’s your favorite picture from your wedding? My favorite pic is where my father and I are dancing. As I said that was the very first time I ever danced with him and considering he had a heart attack one week prior to that. Well I just about didn’t get that chance of a life time. My father raised me from 15 years old until the time I was 17 by himself. Until I gave him a shot of courage to ask someone out who now is my step mother. Yes, I hooked my dad up…
Out of the entire day, what was the most memorable moment? Out of the entire day… sitting here with tears in my eyes as I type this is that I shared special, priceless moments with my father. We danced to Britney Spears all the way to Pit Pull. His hands in the air and feet off the ground he never skipped a beat and told me that it was the best day of his life. My dreams weren’t just answered or my blessings didn’t stop when god gave me a guardian angel with Mike…. They continued when he spared my dad’s life to give me memories that only very few of us ever get a chance to have with their fathers. If you knew more about me you would clearly understand why my dad is my world. And the best memorable moment with Mike was when cake went down the front of my halter wedding dress between my cleavage and he went right in after it in front of god and everybody. That was a memory that I don’t just have it is also on DVD…..
Looking back on your engagement and wedding, is there any advice you would give to brides in the planning process?
Take one day at a time. Don’t let anybody talk you into something that you or your soon to be husband doesn’t want. And enjoy it. It goes by way to fast. Remember it is about both of you and nobody else. So do what makes you happy and what is meaningful to the both of you. After all this is the first party as husband and wife that you are giving so make a hell of day.
So, our talented photographer friend Mrs. Kelly Sauer just launched The Girl in the White Dress and to celebrate this more personal, wedding-specific branch of Kelly Sauer Ltd, she has decide to bless Lowcountry brides with not one, but TWO free weddings! Kelly has a knack for catching the perfect light and if you’re hoping for some truly romantic images on your Charleston wedding day then she’s your girl! Check out the guidelines below and don’t forget to visit Kelly’s post for additional details.
Each wedding will include an engagement session, 6-8 hours of wedding coverage, 300-350 images, a one-of-a-kind proof book, a web album, and a DVD with the digital proofs. ($3600 value)
A Few Portfolio-Wedding Rules – So You Know EXACTLY What I’m Looking For:
• You must be planning an outdoor wedding or a beach wedding. I will be giving away one of each. • Your desired photography coverage must be between the hours of 7:00 a.m. and 8:30 p.m. • You must be willing/able to allot at least an hour on your wedding day for photos of the couple and the full wedding party. (If we do this pre-ceremony, we will walk you down an aisle to your groom for an uber-romantic, utterly tender first look at one another.) • I must be available on your wedding date.
1. What is the Groom’s Name/Bride’s Name? 2. What is your wedding date? 3. What is your venue/location? 4. What priority do you place on photography for your wedding day? 5. What feeling are you trying to create for your day? 6. Where are you drawing inspiration for your wedding? 7. How do you feel my work would help you capture that feeling? 8. Do you have a proposed ceremony start time? 9. What is your planned reception end time? 10. How many guests are you expecting? 11. What is your wedding budget? 12. What is your photography budget? 13. What cake flavor are you having? 14. Tell me about your wedding. What makes your wedding different from every other wedding? What details are you incorporating to tell your love story? What is your very favorite thing about the wedding? Be creative. I want to know you. I want to know your story. 15. What is your favorite image from The Girl in the White Dress slideshow, and why? 16. How did you hear about Kelly Sauer, Ltd. Co. and The Girl in the White Dress?
Valla + David’s Charleston wedding took place this past November overlooking the water at the stunning Renaissance on Charleston Harbor. This venue is every Lowcountry bride’s dream. Not only are you surrounded by the relaxing atmosphere of the marsh, a perfect coastal breeze and unmatched sunsets, but you’ll also get amazing views of the statuesque Cooper River Bridge. Not bad, eh? Valla donned a beautiful Alfred Angelo gown that she accessorized with a rustic bouquet from the talented team at Horst Wholesale as she walked down the aisle. Surrounded by their closest friends and family, the couple’s ‘I do’s’ took place just steps from David’s childhood home. After the ceremony, the newlyweds and their photographer, Mikkel Paige, captured some frame-able shots out by the docks. They continued their celebration at the Renaissance on Charleston Harbor where guests were treated to Lowcountry cuisine from Cafe Catering and a fabulous Publix that matched Valla’s gown.
Our friend Brittani, of Britt Croft Photography, is in the midst of a huge wedding photography giveaway, and boy do I mean huge! (First place wins 8 hours of wedding day coverage, DVD, an online gallery AND an engagement session…yes,please!) Entering is simple, just send Brittani an email telling her a little bit about yourself (see complete details here) and a sweet story about why you two deserve to win. Myself and Sarah of Dodeline Design have been dealt the challenging task of helping Brittani determine the winner (and we couldn’t be more excited)…so show us what you’ve got!
So here’s the nitty gritty:
To enter: Between December 19th and January 5th, send an email to email@example.com with the subject: 2012 Wedding Giveaway and include the following information…
- You and your fiance’s name (or a friend and his/her fiance’s name! You can absolutely enter on a friend’s behalf so long as they are getting married in 2012!
- A short but sweet story about you two as a couple, something that makes you unique, something funny or special, or just flat out why you deserve to win
- Up to 3 photos of the two of you together
- Wedding date & venue/location(s)
- Just for fun: Your favorite way to spend your time together on the weekends?
- Contact information (email and phone)
How it works: Up to five finalists may be chosen by Brittani, Erin from A Lowcountry Wedding, and Sarah from Dodeline Design based off of their story submitted. A blurb from each story accompanied by an image will be put into The 2012 Wedding Giveaway album on the Britt Croft Photography Facebook page, and you send your friends to “like” your image between January 10th and January 24th. Remember they must first “like” the Britt Croft Photography page! The picture with the most likes by 6 p.m. on January 24th wins, the picture with the second-most likes wins 25% savings, and the following morning, one finalist couple will be chosen for a free engagement session!
What you could win:
1. First Place: 8 hours of wedding day coverage with Brittani, an online gallery for sharing with friends and family, a DVD of all final high-res images (500-800) with a personal print release, a complimentary engagement session
2. Second Place: 25% savings on wedding day coverage and add on’s if booked within 3 months
3. All finalists: 10% savings on wedding day coverage if booked within 3 months and one free engagement session given away to a randomly chosen (using random.org) finalist couple
We’ve been loving how our Charleston brides are pairing their swanky designer dresses with fabulous statement necklaces. Our Lowcountry ladies have been incorporating these bold pieces into their Southern wedding day attire and their personalities have really been shining through! Whether it’s a little touch of vintage, a colorful chunky geometric piece, a fantastic strand of pearls or some serious bling, you’ll be sure to be the belle of the ball!