Brittani is friend of A Lowcountry Wedding and we’re so excited to have her gues! Today, she’s filling us in on how she selected her perfect Lowcountry Wedding Venue. Sidenote: Brittani is also an extremely talented photographer. Currently, she is giving away free wedding photography. So, for all you newly engaged brides, check out Britt Croft Photography for all the exciting details!
Hey ALW! It’s so good to be back and I’m excited to use this second post in my guest blogging series to talk a lot more about Dustin and I’s actual wedding. In case you missed the first post about us and our story, you can find it here.
After we got engaged and I moved south, my mom came to visit and I knew it would be the perfect time to start the venue search. To me, the venue and the photographer were two of the most important parts of the wedding (besides saying “I Do” to the man of my dreams of course!).
In the months between our engagement (March) and when my mom came to visit (August), I’d been scouring wedding blogs and using Pinterest to put together lots of inspiration boards that gave a good feel for the colors, vibe, and “look” we wanted, and how we could use décor to really make our Charleston wedding feel like us. I knew it was really important to have a general theme decided on, and based off of who we are and what we like to do together we knew a “rustic lowcountry” wedding would suit us perfectly.
It was important to nail down a way to describe our wedding before looking at venues because it’s key to make sure that the venue you choose will accommodate that style. For us, a church wedding and ballroom reception just wouldn’t fit. People would show up and say, “I thought we were coming to Dustin and Britt’s wedding?!” because that’s how not “us” that would be. When it really came down to what we couldn’t live without, this was our list: to get married outside, to have a semi-outdoors reception, to have the ceremony and reception at the same location, preferably to marry in the fall, and to have a lot of coastal and rustic South Carolina charm naturally at the venue location.
After tons of research, two days of my mom and I driving around the lowcountry, and a Twitpic of each stop, the top venues were: Boone Hall Cotton Dock in Charleston, The Pavilion at Pepper Plantation in Charleston, and Honey Horn Plantation on Hilton Head Island. Before long Dustin and I had narrowed it down to Honey Horn and Pepper Plantation and I just knew we couldn’t go wrong either way. They are both such amazing locations that offered exactly what we wanted, but on a whim I decided to take Dustin and his mom to see the Pavilion at Pepper Plantation because I just had a feeling he would love how masculine and rustic the Pavilion is. To see how excited he was about it – that was it! He’d had the “you handle it honey, I’ll love whatever you love” approach to the wedding so far, so to see how much he loved this location, I knew that was the one. We are so excited about how PERFECT this location is for us! We’ll get married on the back side of the pavilion by the small lake, and our reception will be in the Pavilion, but guests will easily be able to spend tons of time outside on the lawn, in the gazebo on the lake, on the amazing deep lowcountry porches, or in front of one of the giant rustic fireplaces! It’s going to be beautiful!
When it was time to nail down a date, the Pavilion was already mostly booked up for fall 2012, but we had about three openings to choose from – one in late August, one in September, and one in November. When choosing a date, there’s many other important factors to consider, such as what is going on in town that time of the year, what will the weather be like (especially important for us getting married outside!), and if other vendors that you really want will be available for that date. The weather was a big concern for us, but after doing checking out trusty Weather.com, we saw that the average temperature in Charleston in September is 82 degrees…which is perfect! Of course I still fear it will be scorching hot or raining that day, but that’s what tents are for and there’s really only but so much we can control – so it will be what it will be!
Along with the weather, another concern was the photographer – obviously since photography is what I do, this was one of the most important, if not the most important decision for us, and a great photographer will often book more than a year out! We were pretty sure which date we wanted at Pepper Plantation, but…you’ll have to wait until my next post to find out which date it is and what photographer sealed the deal for us!