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Rustic Outdoor Georgia Wedding

We’ve seen our fair share of weddings, but an “I do” that takes place literally right on the river? That’s an unbelievably cool first. It’s just one of the many noteworthy moments of this intimate, rustic affair (planned in 8 weeks!), and the flowers by Lindsay Coletta add the perfect balance of texture and style. Read on for the story that brought these two adorables together, and see the whole day through the lens of Laura Gordon.

Colors
Seasons
Fall
Settings
Woods
Styles
Rustic

From The Bride… When I was 7 years old and lugging my softball gear around the rec fields near my house, I never dreamed that my groom- to-be was the lanky little boy with dark hair play-wrestling with my brother on the side lines in the grass. And thats how our story began – we spent our whole entire childhood visiting the same athletic fields, restaurants, banks, and grocery stores but always just barely missing one another. Fast forward to October of 2007, Will was a freshman in college at SPSU and came back to his Alma Mater for the homecoming football game. I had just transfered to Landmark and his best friend Sam “introduced” us. In the words of Will, he was smitten. Shortly thereafter he sent me this little snippet in a love note, “I don’t know your favorite color or favorite ice cream flavor or favorite song, but I do know that those ocean blue eyes dance when you smile at me and that is enough to completely capture me.” SWOOONNNN.

I wasn’t even allowed to date though and knew my parents would never go for me dating a boy in college. So, we kept in touch every once in a while, but the flame burned out. Fast forward to to March of 2011, I was going with my brother to a college orientation at ABAC in Tifton. I mistakenly thought this was the school Will now attended and sent him a text telling him I was visiting his school that day. He responded and said ” You’re coming to SPSU?” Whoops, I didn’t even know where he went to college. (Face to palm!) We shared a laugh and a good conversation and I decided to look him up on Facebook afterwards. I couldn’t help but noticing how handsome he was. Handsome + sweet + he loves the Lord? Score. I told my mom that night I was going to get that boy to take me on a date ;)

Anyone who knows me knows that I’m not a fan of ladies pursuing men, I genuinely believe that this is the man’s responsibility. Well, I here I was pining for this man and reminiscing over how sweet he had been in days past, but I had no way of “being pursued” by him. He was clueless that I was interested, we never saw each other. He lived an hour and a half away, and to make matters worse when he had liked me years ago I just brushed it off and quit talking to him. I obviously had nothing going for me here. So what did I do? I kinda broke my rule and decided I would text him once a week and if he was interested and it was meant to be he would get the hint…my gosh that took forever! This one text a week went on for a solid month. I would text him, we would have these awesome conversations, he would be so sweet & fun and then…crickets. I wouldn’t hear from him until the following week! Finally after four weeks of this I was about to say, ” Oh well!” on the whole idea when Will asked me if I would like to spend a Saturday with him! YAY! Finally!

The following week he came and picked me up and I hopped up in his truck and we rode country roads and went fishing at Lake Raymond. The whole day was just fun and easy. I never was nervous or worried what he thought. It was just easy like two old friends just having the best day. That is until he suggested we watch the sunset from the bed of his truck while we slow danced and he sang to me. DOUBLE SWOON. My heart was totally gone. I came home that night and told my mom that I was going to marry that boy, I was sure of it. From that night on we have been pretty much inseparable. There have been ups and downs and we have faced many trials, but through it all we have grown closer and our love for one another has grown deeper. I couldn’t ask for a more kind, caring, loving or Godly example to lead me. Isn’t it so amazing how God works things out if we just trust in His Sovereign plan!

As wedding photographers we see how easily couples can become consumed in the wedding planning process and as a bride I knew I didn’t want all that that encompassed. We talked about eloping in the mountains, but after we bought our new home, Simply Sarah Farms, we knew it was the perfect place for a small intimate wedding. Will proposed and we planned the whole affair in exactly 8 weeks. My vision for the wedding was simple elegance. Our farm has a cabin in the woods so I wanted to play off of the natural elements that was offered there and lots of elegant organic touches.

For starters, I had this picture in my head of all 100 of our guests eating off of one big long farm table under the trees. So off to work my dad and his friends went making 12 ten foot long wooden farm tables. Our amazing florist, Lindsay Coletta decorated these tables with greenery garland that she foraged the morning of the wedding, pomegranates, figs, and then she added in pops of bold red and white floral buds. These florals paired with tall taper candles on bronze candlesticks and pillar candles made for a table scape prettier than I ever imagined.

The second thing I knew I wanted but was a little difficult to make happen was getting married in the river. Since we bought the farm we spend nearly every weekend out on the river kayaking, tubing and fishing. Everyone thought I was crazy when they heard my plan but I knew we could make it happen. We started going down to the river weeks ahead of time and making a flat path for guest to stand and walk, changing the course of water up stream, and cleaning up tree limbs and debris. My talented dad handmade a beautiful arbor for us to get married under and we used ferns as aisle markers down into the shallow banks. We used a canoe for the getaway from the ceremony. It was perfect! I am so pleased with how everything turned out and so very thankful for all of our friends, family, and amazing team of vendors who made our day a possible!

Photography: Laura Gordon | Event Design: The Bride | Floral Design: Lindsay Coletta | Wedding Dress: Grace Loves Lace | Ceremony Venue: Flint River- Thomaston, Georgia | Reception Venue: Private Residence | Bride's Shoes: Hunter Boots | Bride's Shoes: Antonio Melani | Hair & Makeup: Jennifer C Nieman | Groom's Attire: Jos. A. Bank | Car Rental: Blue Eyed Yonder | Reception Dress: JS Collections

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
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These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
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Jekyll Island Club Hotel

With the holidays just behind us, and engagement season in full force, there are lots of sparkly new rings upon fingers! Now that you and your honey have decided on forever, the wedding planning can begin. First up? A gorgeous venue. Lucky for you, I’ve got just the place — the historic Jekyll Island Club Hotel.

This incredible venue located on Jekyll Island, Georgia, is as gorgeous as they come. Offering couples a huge variety of settings where they can tie the knot — garden, beachfront, ballroom, cottage lawn + chapel to name a few — the breathtaking grounds of the Jekyll Island Club Hotel will have you and your guests head-over-heels. To help you navigate the planning process, the hotel has a top-notch sales + catering department that will walk you through everything from package options, room blocks, booking vendors, day-of coordination and so much more.

I don’t know about you all, but I’m seriously smitten with this stunning locale. It’s not too late to book your 2015 big day at the Jekyll Island Club Hotel — there are even a handful of discounted weekends available! To learn more about the venue and to get started planning, call 912.635.5170, email sales{at}jekyllclub.com or head over to their website. Happy planning, my dears!

Sponsored-Post

Cozy Winter Feast Inspiration

Melissa Schollaert has captured pure winter loveliness. Tailor & Table Design Studio crafted an elegant feast complete with cocktails while the channeling the romance of an English countryside whilst embracing the calming quiet of a Georgian winter. A dreamy Bel Fiore Bridal gown, richly hued florals, and an intimate fireside celebration have left me embracing the cooler months ahead… and you can see it all right here.

Colors
Seasons
Winter
Settings
Manor
Styles
Elegant

From Melissa Schollaert Photography… Our storyline is based on a wedding in the English Countryside at an old, abandoned manor. The look of it is very masculine, dark, moody and winter-focused, and is set at Barnsley Gardens in Georgia, a decaying renaissance home built in the 1840s. We envision a lively, turn of the century affair with an entire weekend of events ranging from pheasant hunts for the gentlemen to afternoon tea for the ladies. We also incorporated a traditional wintertime, English Cocktail called Wassail, which was drank on the Epiphany celebration on January 6th. The history of wassail is that groups would go out into the apple orchards on the feast of the Epiphany and sing songs to the trees in order to promote an abundant apple harvest the next year. We had an entire cocktail station with mulled cider, bourbon, apples and all of the spices necessary to make the beverage. We also had a traditional English feast of abundance with candied fruit, roasted vegetables and a whole chicken roasted over a fire created by the chef at Barnsley. Our models donned winter attire provided by London Trading Company in Atlanta – complete with authentic English hunting gear for the groom, as well as a shawl/cape and accessories for the bride in addition to her traditional wedding gown. We even included an authentic hunting hound to the shoot as well.

Photography: Melissa Schollaert Photography | Event Design: Tailor & Table Design Studio | Catering: Barnsley Gardens Resort | Makeup Artist: Andrea Carter Artistry | China Rental: Vintage English Teacup | Decor: Tailor & Table Design Studio | Gowns: Bel Fiore Bridal | Hairstylist: Robn Johnsen | Male Attire: London Trading Company | Rentals: Miss Milly's | Venue: Barnsley Gardens Resort

These Vendors are members of our Little Black Book.
For membership information, click here