I am loving the southern charm that has been popping up on my desk lately. Weddings like this one where you can practically see the smiles, feel the warmth and laughter, and feel the sweet Southern sun. Mira Photographs captured it all, from the beautiful cotton-filled bouquets to the sunset kisses, and it’s all sitting pretty right here.
Though we met in New York City, Carter and I were both born and raised in coastal towns in the South–he hails from Virginia Tidewater area and I grew up in the South Carolina Lowcountry–and we knew we wanted our wedding to feel like a wonderful party that could have been thrown in either of our childhood backyards. The venue also needed to be close to the water, to have at least one grand oak tree on the property, and to have catering options that reflected our favorite foods from growing up. Oldfield in Okatie — just 15 minutes from where I grew up — filled every one of our must-need requirements and surpassed our expectations as a venue. It is both stunningly beautiful and, like us, can either be dressed up or dressed down. We chose to dress it down a bit to match the relaxed feel of our relationship, and let the location’s natural beauty take center stage. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t comment on how amazing the staff there is. By the end of our wedding weekend they all felt like family, especially the Events Director, Dani.
Family is extremely important to both of us, and we were sure to include them and our memories with them in as many aspects of the day as we could. The inspiration for the decor and details at came from those important family memories. We chose to use cotton as one of our main floral elements because my family’s farm grows cotton in the Fall and I spent many weekends driving through cotton fields, admiring how beautiful they were. Each of the stems was hand-picked by my family, including my 85-year-old grandmother. We wanted the floral arrangements to feel natural, so we stuck to a green and white color scheme with a few pops of yellow. My aunt graciously took on all of the floral duties, from the bouquets to the centerpieces and even the escort card display, which included rosemary picked from her garden.
Choosing our menu was definitely the easiest part of the planning process for us. We knew we wanted to serve southern staples such as pulled pork and collard greens, but we also chose to set up tables with a lowcountry boil — shrimp, sausage, corn and potatoes boiled with Old Bay seasoning — like my dad made for family events growing up. In addition to picking all that cotton, my grandmother also made her famous 6-layer chocolate cake and miniature key lime and pecan pies for the dessert table.
Carter and his groomsmen all grew up playing in the Colonial Williamsburg Fife & Drum Corps, and we chose to forgo some of the more traditional wedding elements like a cake cutting and garter toss so they could play a few tunes to open the reception and introduce our guests to Carter’s second greatest love, fife and drum. Our cake topper was also inspired by one of Carter’s passions: the Virginia Tech Hokies.
Every bride should be able to have a wedding that they can truly describe as one of the best days of her life and our celebration at Oldfield was definitely the best day of my life so far. The intimacy of the small guest list meant everyone who was there felt like a member of our extended family and having our family members contribute so much to our wedding made it feel as though it was a true family celebration. It’s hard not to look at the pictures and relive how amazing it was every single day.
Photography: Mira Photographs | Floral Design: The Bride's Aunt | Wedding Dress: Theia At Lovely Bride In New York City | Invitations: Delphine Press | Ceremony Venue: The River Club At Oldfield | Reception Venue: The Outfitters Center At Oldfield | Bride's Shoes: Michael Kors | Bridesmaids Dresses: Bill Levkoff | Catering: Oldfield | Make-up: Jessica Shefsick At Skinzin | Hair & Makeup: Christine Stephens & Annie Emison At Karisma Salon | Bride's Necklace: Catbird | Cake Topper: The Pink Koala | Dessert: The Bride's Aunt & Grandmother | Groom & Groomsmen Attire: DKNY | Rentals: Amazing Event Rentals | Signage: The Paper Walrus