A Real Wedding, III
March 10, 2008
Fall Weddings

IF you are just checking in, we are talking to Danielle...an SMP reader who sent us the gorgeous details from her own real wedding!

From Danielle...

I knew the most important things to me when looking at my budget were location, pictures and food. I spent the majority of my money there and then really budgeted the rest. I knew I could have the wedding of my dreams if I just really put my mind to it and chose the right elements. I also wanted a wedding that was not the regular cookie cutter wedding – a wedding that exuded our love and our story. Very personal and fun!


All photos by Ray and Erica Tisdale at 35 Atlanta

I found my Maggie Sottero dress here at a local store in Atlanta and used Ann Taylor for the bridesmaid dresses. Ialso bought a gold cocktail dress to change into during the reception since we love to dance and I knew I could not move around in my princess dress! One of my bridesmaids made my chocolate brown programs and I worked with a local stationery shop for my save the dates and invitations. I knew I wanted to add small elements and details because to me that is what makes the difference but I knew with my budget I would have to get creative. I chose not to do favors and instead did inexpensive things like...

-HandPainted Signs leading guests to the ceremony site

-GuestTowels in all the bathrooms printed with a great quote

-SilverLunch Pails filled with guest necessities (Advil, Breath Mints, Band Aids, Hair Spray, Gum, etc) in all the bathrooms

-Chocolate brown bar napkins with our monogram

-Candle Monogram “C” on the dock

-Sparklers as we were leaving

I also knew that I could save money on my flowers since FWF offered such a beautiful, natural setting. My dream was to have peonies in my bouquet but they were out of season and it would have been excessively expensive to ship them in. Instead, I asked my florist to take carnations (I know, I know) and wire 3 or 4 of them together to make it look like a full, lush peony. It worked! We added hydrangea, roses and magnolia leaves to complete the look. I found some discarded burlap that we wrapped them in and I added beaded trim (that you use for pillows) around the burlap. It was the perfect mix of Montana Rustic and Southern Chic!

For the ceremony, I chose to use the backdrop of the oak tree and lake instead of overloading the area with flowers. We did use two large urns filled with tons of baby’s breath – they were breathtaking! I had gotten the idea from Martha Stewart Weddings years ago and it was a huge cost saver! We decorated the reception tables with burlap tablecloths that had a white topper. We chose inexpensive table arrangements so that I could save money. I used simple flowers, assorted nuts, and tons of candles. Candles always make the space look elegant and romantic! I also hung mason jars throughout the trees and shepherd hooks along the reception area. They were magical!

We have a few more brilliant details coming, so check back in a bit!