Rustic + Elegant Jacksonville Wedding
July 13, 2015
Classic WeddingsRusticPlantation
Maybe as a former ballet dancer myself I'm a little partial, but I knew this wedding would be making my favorites list upon first glance at these chic shoes. I didn't even need to see this stunning Bride's dress (the back details!), the elegant gold chargers or even this too-cute-for-words pup... but believe me, these all added up to one amazing affair, captured for our lucky eyes by Lauren Peele. See it all right this way!
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From Lauren Peele... Dallas Cowboys cheerleader, Jennifer (Efstathion) Colvin, made the most stunning bride. The bride and groom met through a bridesmaid and fellow cheerleader three years ago and have been living happily in Dallas since.

The two were wed in Jen's home town of Jacksonville, FL, at a venue her family built for her wedding. A majestic tree draped in flowers made for a romantic backdrop as they said their vows surrounded by family and friends.

Jen's love of dance shaped her wedding into an elegant affair in neutral shades of grey and pale blue. She wore a Hayley Paige dress that was made to move, complete with ballet flats. Her maids were dressed in perfectly mismatched dresses and all held natural cream bouquets.

A candlelit reception set the mood for a romantic evening filled with dancing. The tables were adorned in ivory linens surrounded by lots of greenery keeping with the elegant yet organic tone of the day.

From the Bride... What are the MOST important aspects of our wedding day… What are our make-it-or-break-it things? This was the first topic we tackled when we started our wedding planning journey, and it wasn’t a very long conversation before we came up with our answer. Wedding success equaled: 1) being surrounded by our family and friends + 2) FUN (which obviously involves a lengthy dance party) + 3) having an amazing photographer to capture every moment. Being on the same page about our wedding priorities made the rest of our decisions a piece of cake :)

The venue, Bowing Oaks Plantation, was simply breathtaking. It gave our wedding that laidback, celebratory vibe that makes everyone feel right at home. We had the ceremony under the shade of a beautiful, giant oak tree draped in flower garland. Our officiant, Ted, is an extra special guy because he was the best man in my mom and dad’s wedding (42 years ago and counting!) and also performed the ceremony for my sister’s wedding. Ted’s words definitely made our ceremony feel more personal. However… the BEST part of the ceremony was when Ryan got a little tongue-tied saying our vows! He was a little caught up in the moment and repeated that he would take me as his “waffle wedded wife.” We totally lost it laughing, and everyone joined right in with us! So funny and so adorable :)

Of course, for any Florida wedding… outside…. in the spring… weather is a concern. So we partook in a little tradition to ward off the rain! Southern folklore says that “burying an unopened bottle of bourbon one month before the wedding, at the exact time of the wedding, at the site of the wedding, ensures good weather on the day of the event.” I’m not particularly superstitious, but we did have pretty perfect weather! The second part of the tradition gets even better. After dinner, everyone went outside and circled around as we dug up the bottle and passed it around to kick off the reception!

One of my favorite moments of the night was the father-daughter dance. My super talented groom played guitar and sang “Brown Eyed Girl” while Dad and I showed off our dance moves. This was just the beginning of the dance party highlights - all made possible by my amazingly perfect wedding dress! I loved my Hayley Paige dress even more than I could have imagined. The bodice and delicate straps reminded me so much of the ballet costumes I grew up wearing, and I immediately knew it was the one. I was also confident that I would be able bust out any moves I wanted to in this gown (which came in handy when it was time to do the kickline with my fellow Dallas Cowboys Cheerleaders - a game day AND wedding reception tradition!) Likewise, I needed my feet feeling good too, so ballet shoes were an obvious fun and comfortable choice!

Our wedding day was everything we could have hoped for and more. The first morning we were back in Dallas, I made my HUSBAND breakfast-in-bed. Waffles, of course! With a little sticky note… “Love, your waffle wedded wife.”
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