Oh this pretty little fête couldn't get more charming if it tried. Just when you think you've seen it all, another darling image from Half Orange Photography proves there is SO much charm to be seen in this southern, vintage soiree. With a pretty as can be pastel color palette, a groom in uniform and a bride that is the definition of charming herself - you can bet your bottom dollar we'll be spending some serious QT in the full gallery today!
From the Bride... Having a long engagement due to Brian being in Iraq, I had a lot of time to plan. We originally were set for an outdoor, rustic-type wedding on June 30th. I found all my vendors quickly, including my amazing photographers Stancy and Katie. My mother and father didn't have a wedding photographer to capture their day, so this was one of the most important factors to us. Then the Army decided to add a little excitement to our lives. We had to move the date up by four months and needed a new indoor location. There was no other place I would rather have held it than Astin Mansion. Of course the style changed, and I am thankful it did. The vintage southern feel of the mansion fit us perfectly. Luckily all of our vendors were able to accommodate our crazy life and had no problem switching dates.
Our main concern about our wedding was that we wanted it to be fun for everyone, a party our friends would remember forever. We aren't picky and are not hugely concerned with how everything should be run, which is why I am so grateful to the Astin Mansion staff, who planned and organized everything from the time I walked down the aisle to the moment we said goodbye. Without Kelly in particular, it would have been chaos! I'll be honest, I was a complete mess when I woke up day of our wedding and it was raining! Our ceremony was set for outside with the reception being inside. Kelly had a plan and reassured me it was nothing to stress about. Thirty minutes before the ceremony, the clouds parted and the sun came out. The Astin Mansion staff cleared all the water off and everything was a dream come true. My favorite moment from the wedding was the "first look" session we did before the ceremony. It was so calming to see my groom looking so handsome, and I was able to get the tears out before I walked down the aisle. I remember how sad I was because it was raining and Brian told me, "Remember, at the end of the day we are married, and that's all that matters." I would highly suggest doing the first look — it makes for amazing pictures and is a moment you will remember forever. However, don't let your friends watch. All of our friends stood around watching and it made it slightly uncomfortable for us to be as intimate as we wanted in front of everyone watching and listening.
Our reception had a vintage southern feel. We used my grandmother's milk glass, mason jars, books, trinkets and photos of the families for decor. We wanted to have items around that reminded us of those who were not able to be with us, and they made it feel as if they were right there with us. Both Brian and I graduated from Texas A&M and have a strong love of our alma mater, so we incorporated small pieces of A&M everywhere. One of my favorite items from the reception was the groom's cake shaped like the Dixie Chicken, a local bar we loved going to. I made the cake topper for the bride's cake along with the programs for the ceremony. We wanted to make sure our wedding was a party, and boy, did we have one! Our DJ was fantastic and kept the guest on their feet all night. I must say everything really came together thanks to Megan, my florist. My bouquet was the most extraordinary arrangement I have ever seen. All the flowers used for the reception fit so perfectly, but blended so well and every table was different. Brian really had no clue what everything would look like; he pretty much told me to do whatever would make me happy. But when he saw everything, he was taken back and so thankful to the Astin Mansion staff for making our day so wonderful. All the stress and last minute changes were beyond worth the beauty that happened that day. My suggestion to all brides out there is to just relax. Your day will be just as perfect as you imagined, and remember at the end of the day you are marrying your best friend — that is what the whole day is about!
Wedding Photography: Half Orange Photography / Wedding Venue + Catering: The Astin Mansion in Bryan, Texas / Wedding Planning + Styling: Kelly Lawrence of The Astin Mansion / Floral Design: Megan Rudloff of The Astin Mansion / Wedding Cakes: Cake Junkie / Wedding Invitations + Program Design: Love vs. Design (Owned by the Bride) / Violinist: BCS String Quartet / Guitarist: A Family Friend / DJ: Jeramiah Pittmon of Attic Productions / Wedding Dress: San Patrick / Shoes: Elle / Necklace: Anna & Ava / Bridesmaids' Dresses: J.Crew