After spotting that cake, the modern, contemporary, delicious looking cake from For Goodness Cakes, I needed more of this Charlotte wedding. And after checking out the traditional with a fun, clean twist affair, filled to the brim with love, style, and some of the most non-DIY looking DIY floral centerpieces, I needed more of this charming couple. And finally after spending some time on the couple’s wedding website, I totally fell in love with their seemingly effortless charm. Captured by The Beautiful Mess, the wedding is one I know none of us, even if we don’t personally know the happy couple, will soon forget. Click here for more!

After being able to travel extensively over the years, I slowly began to realize my hometown Charlotte is very unique. It still has the appeal of Southern charm, but with a lot of the perks of a bigger city, including great venues for weddings.  My husband and I knew we wanted an outdoor wedding, and after browsing online for possibilities, Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden seemed like the perfect place. As soon as we saw it in person, we knew that this was the venue for us. The White Garden was large enough for all of our guests, but the fact it was enclosed gave the space a very intimate air.

Most of the inspiration came from the venue itself. Being designers, my mother and I found great joy throughout the planning process, setting out to create that perfect balance of décor- giving a subtle nod to times past, without over-doing it and forcing a theme. Images of 19th century English conservatories, vintage botanical illustrations, and apothecary label typographies constantly drove our decisions.

For the ceremony, we used mainly white hydrangeas and lilies. The whole garden was white and green- and we introduced color through the bridesmaids’ dresses, the men’s suits, and the bouquets. When it came to wedding gowns, I was originally interested in Jenny Packham’s signature sheath dresses, reminiscent of bygone eras with her intricate beading. After trying some on, I felt they were more fit for the red carpet than the aisle. My mother-in-law suggested I try on Jenny Packham’s Minerva gown, which had layer upon layer of ivory silk tulle- so light and comfortable! It was perfect for the garden, and I finally felt like a bride.

For the centerpieces we bought large apothecary glass jars and planted silk lady slipper and cymbidium orchids with moss. We chose a navy blue satin for the table linens, and placed the jars on a moss mats in the center of each table. We ordered Jaguar Pink Mokara Orchids from Thailand, and floated each stem in glass cylinders to add some color to the centerpieces. We also decided to give our guests a taste of the South with spiked Arnold Palmers for cocktail hour, and Deep Fried Peanuts for favors.

My favorite part of the planning process though, was collaborating with my husband to design our invitations and programs. We looked to old pharmacy and apothecary labels for guidance, and a friend letterpressed them with his old Vandercook Press.

It is so satisfying to look back and consider how each detail combined to perfectly reflect our desires for this special day. I only wish it could have lasted longer!

Venue: Daniel Stowe Botanical Garden / Wedding Website: Designed by the bride & groom, Courtney and Kyle / Reception Flowers & Centerpieces: Jeannie Heth, mother of the bride / Ceremony Flowers & Bouquets: Place for Flowers / Decor: Creative Solutions / Photography: The Beautiful Mess / Cake: For Goodness Cakes / Hair & Make-up: Lindsey Regan Thorne / Gown and Headpiece Designer: Jenny Packham / Shoes: Jessica Simpson / Caterers: Best Impressions / Mens Suits: Banana Republic / Ties: Indochino / Officiant: Didi Wong, Church of the Good Shepherd / Wedding Coordinator: Connie Miller, friend of bride’s family / Invitations & Stationery: Designed by the bride & groom, Printed by Ryan Cook of Something Pressed / Favors: Mr. B’s Fun Foods Deep Fried Peanuts / DJ: Brian Keelan, Z Brothers DJs / String Quartet: Carolina Classic Strings

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