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Have You Ever Considered Virginia for Your Big Day? This Fete Might Peak Your Interest.

You might not think of Virginia as a spot to add to your wedding wishlist, but darlings, it’s a underrated gem. One look at this tented fete—graced with a glowing sunset—and you’ll be looking into this state a little more. With planning by Just A Little Ditty and photography by Michael and Carina, you’ll soon realize that the local vendors are incredible to boot. Scroll below to see the day unfold and prepare yourself to fall in love with the mountains of Virginia!

From the Bride… Our wedding took place at Big Spring Farm in Lexington, Virginia – a place and a city very close to our hearts. Cole and I met at Big Spring when we were both undergraduates at Washington & Lee University. We would go on to get engaged there and, a year later, married under the weeping willow tree out on the peninsula at Big Spring.

One of our favorite parts about our time in Lexington was the beautiful outdoors, especially the Blue Ridge Mountains. This being said, what was most important to us was to bring our family and friends to this place and setting so close to our hearts. We wanted our wedding to be fun, joyful, and effortless, especially since so many of our guest travelled long distances to come to our out-of-town wedding.

Our vision was to let the Virginia mountains speak for themselves, which is why we chose a neutral color scheme and natural greenery for most of our flowers. We felt as though Michael and Carina’s film photography let that vision come to life in a way that was authentic and timeless. We hoped that all of our details and invitations echoed this theme as well. We wish we had known that all the little details will work out! It is so easy to get swept up in the planning and easily become overwhelmed. We would tell other couples to plan in advance, but most of all to take a deep breath, enjoy the process, have fun, and always keep the ultimate goal – your marriage – in perspective.

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Photography: Michael And Carina Photography | Floral Design: Southern Blooms by Pat's Floral Designs | Dress: Monique Lhuillier | Cake: Favorite Cakes | Catering: The Catering Outfit | Lighting: Blue Ridge AV & Lighting | Entertainment: Sam Hill Entertainment | Beauty: Avenue 42 | Cinema: The Herringtons | Event Venue: Big Spring Farm | Film Lab: Richard Photo Lab | Planning and Styling: Just A Little Ditty | Rentals: CE Rentals | Rentals: CE Rentals

These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
A Fall Southern Wedding With Muted Pastels

When it came time for Christine, stationery designer behind Typo Boutique to plan her wedding day, a few things were certain. She envisioned a laid-back southern farm wedding with deeply meaningful details and a completely custom paper suite, of course. But one of the most unexpected moments came when Christine’s mom handmade a wedding dress bodice using lace and buttons from both her grandmothers’ gowns. This entire day is an absolute treasure and we’re so thankful for the captures by Sawyer Baird.

From the Bride… When we first started dating, Matt took me on a trip to New York City and we’ve always said that’s where we fell in love. There’s just something magical about New York and it’s always held a special place in my heart. On the same weekend, exactly two years later, he surprised me with another trip. He set up the most thoughtful weekend, recreating all of our memories – we stayed at the same hotel, visited our favorite shops, and ate dinner at the same table we had two years earlier. It was the sweetest gesture and just when I thought it couldn’t get any more perfect, he ended the first night of our trip by proposing!

As we started planning our wedding, we knew a farm venue would be our first choice. We set up a trip to Lexington to visit Big Spring Farm and immediately knew it was the perfect place for us. The property is the most charming, picturesque setting and the Blue Ridge Mountain backdrop is absolutely breathtaking. We fell in love with the small southern town and even though neither of us had any ties to Lexington we knew it was meant to be.

As a stationery designer, the most exciting part of wedding planning was the paper! I knew I wanted everything to be completely custom and pull in pieces of our personal story throughout the wedding. Our invitations were backed with a historical map of Lexington and our envelopes were lined with a painting of the Blue Ridge Mountains from the 1800s. I carried our custom brand through each piece of our day – from menus to drink coasters to thank you notes, everything was meaningful and completely “us”. We even included our three dogs with a custom logo design on our favors.

Another incredibly special part of our day was the top to my wedding dress. My mom made it by hand, using vintage lace from my grandmother’s gown. She made functional buttonholes down the back using buttons from both of my grandmothers’ gowns, one from my aunt and one from her own wedding dress. On the inside of the top, she sewed a heart shape that was cut from one of my father’s shirts. She also updated a dress that I had worn as a flower girl when I was three years old and reworked it for our flower girl! It was so special, both to have her make these one-of-a-kind pieces, and to incorporate so much history.

We wanted to create a laid-back, southern gathering for our guests and we couldn’t be happier with the result. I’m so thankful for our amazing team of vendors and we’ll be forever grateful for how seamlessly they brought our vision to life.

Photography: Sawyer Baird | Floral Design: Mallory Joyce | Wedding Dress: Carol Hannah | Stationery: Typo Boutique | Rings: Tacori | Bridesmaids' Dresses: BHLDN | Catering: Southern Inn | Hair + Makeup: Avenue 42 | DJ: Jumpin Jack Chad | Groom's Attire: Fitzgeralds Mens Store | Venue: Big Spring Farm | Wedding Venue: Big Spring Farm | Graphic Design + Paper Goods: Typo Boutique | Rentals: MS Events | String Band: Plum Blossom String Quartet

Giveaway Wedding for One Deserving Couple

Not only is the wedding industry chock-full of incredible talent, it’s also a community bursting with heart. And today we’re seeing first-hand what can happen when a team of vendors (a.k.a. The Wedding Collective) gifts over $40,000 worth of services to make wedding dreams come true. The recipients? Alex and Laura, a beautiful couple who couldn’t be more deserving. Read on for their incredible story, and don’t miss all Katelyn James’ captures plus Shaina Koren’s film below.

From Katelyn James PhotographyHave you ever wondered what it would look like for over a dozen wedding professionals to come together and gift over $40,000 worth of services to one deserving couple?! This became a reality for us just recently. A few weekends ago, over a dozen vendors came together to not only bless one amazing couple with the wedding of their dreams, but they also had the chance to style a wedding to perfection.

Alex and Laura submitted to our Wedding Collective Giveaway contest back in January and shared their story. Their story is one of perseverance, pain and commitment. Laura lost her father to cancer only to later find that Alex, her soon-to-be husband was diagnosed with cancer as well. After months of treatment, Alex entered remission but their wedding funds were swallowed up by medical bills demanding to be paid.

To say it was an honor to be a part of this giveaway wedding would be an understatement. When you’re partnering together with some of the best vendors in the industry for an amazing cause, joy just radiates through you. So not only was this wedding styled and designed beautifully, it was executed with love and sacrifice from all of the vendors. 

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Photography: Katelyn James Photography | Cinematography: Shaina Koren | Event Planning + Design: Tart Event Co | Floral Design: Amanda Veronee | Cake: Sorby Sweets | Invitations: Jess Creates (The Bride) | Catering: Chef's Catering | Hair And Makeup: Emily Hudspeth | Calligraphy: The Weekend Type | Groomsmen Ties: High Cotton Ties | Venue: Big Spring Farm | Bridal Boutique: Tiffany's Bridal | DJ & Lighting: Shaner Sound | Furniture Rentals: Paisley & Jade | Photography Assistance: Jillian Michelle Photography

These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
Rustic Chic Outdoor Wedding in Virginia

Once in a while, we come across a wedding so audaciously beautiful we fall silent. At a loss for words due to the sheer amount of pretty we’ve procured . From their wildflower first look, to the regal reception that followed, this obviously alluring fete from Ashley Cox Photography has left us tongue-tied, but don’t worry because if a picture is worth a thousand words then THE VAULT says it all for us!

From Ashley Cox PhotographyMeredith and Stuart’s wedding took place in Lexington, Virginia at the Irvine Estate in early September. They were married on the back terrace with an absolutely stunning view of the Blue Ridge Mountains. Their reception took place in a room full of exposed wooden beams with linen and lights strung throughout, gold and rose accents, and an abundance of gorgeous flowers. From their first look that took place in a wildflower field to their ceremony and first dance, Meredith and Stuart’s day was full of deep emotion and true joy.

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See even more Virginia weddings in THE VAULT! 

Photography: Ashley Cox Photography | Cinematography: Stephen Stonestreet | Floral Design: A New Leaf Florist | Cake: Rockbridge Cake Shoppe | Invitations: Minted | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Impressions Bridal Boutique | Hair and Makeup: Cindy's Salon | DJ: Angel Verde | Groomsmen Attire: Men's Wearhouse | Transportation: Abbott Trailways | Venue: Teels Jewellery | Lighting and Drapery: MS Events

Equestrian Meets French Wedding Inspiration

A beautiful blend of themes, a stunning farm backdrop and a plethora of breathtaking images captured by Katelyn James Photography (at her very own workshop!)… This, my friends, is what I call perfection. From the French meets equestrian-inspired stylings of Kaitlin Holland to the chic rentals from Paisley And Jade to the lush florals crafted by Amanda Veronee.  Head to THE VAULT to soak it all in.

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From Katelyn James Photography… This shoot was inspired by equestrian details and French touches in the fabrics, colors, and some design elements. We wanted this to feel rich with history and beauty. The goal was to use the countryside to add effortless beauty, bringing in touches from the past, with great emphasis on community and togetherness. This styled shoot ended with a group dinner under the stars in the mock reception area. This shoot is a perfect blend of summery and early fall color tones! Ivory, antique gold (which ties in nicely with the coloring of the barn), rose, walnut, with a few additions of deep navy or olive.

This shoot took place in conjunction with Katelyn James’s Photography workshop for photographers from all over the country.

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See more Inspiration Shoots in THE VAULT!

Photography: Katelyn James Photography | Event Design & Styling: Kaitlin Holland School Of Styling | Floral Design: Amanda Veronee | Wedding Dress: JLM Couture, Inc | Calligraphy: Lydia Robins Hendrix Studio | Venue: Big Spring Farm | Furniture Rentals: Paisley & Jade | Model: Brittany Anderson Photography | Photography - Assistance: Jillian Michelle Photography | Ribbon: Adorn | Vintage Rentals: Southern Vintage Table

These Featured Designers are members of our Look Book.
For membership information, click here
Charming Southern Wedding on Virginia Horse Farm

There is nothing I love more than a good dose of Southern Charm. Especially when said charm involves a love story that originated on campus. Elizabeth Duncan Events planned a day imbued with significance as these Southern sweethearts wed at their college chapel. From the buried bottle of bourbon (to warn off rain!) to the Bride’s heirloom veilJodi Miller Photography snapped every whimsical moment, here!

From the beautiful Bride… Andrew and I both attended Washington & Lee University. We met at his fraternity party my sophomore year, when we both happened to be playing “wingman” for our respective friends. I thought he was cute, but wrote him off as just another football player who seemed like a bit of a jerk! Three years later, we ran into each other at a friend’s party in Washington, DC. We started dating soon after, and seven years, five jobs, a law degree (for me), and a CFA (for Andrew) later, we got engaged at Andrew’s family home in Hilton Head, South Carolina! My friends still love to tease me about my complete change of heart!

Having attended many weddings over the years, Andrew and I had grown to love the easy sense of intimacy and warmth that comes with a destination wedding. Something about gathering a group of friends and family in an unfamiliar place encourages everyone to really relax and enjoy themselves. We considered venues literally all over the U.S., but it was Andrew who suggested Lee Chapel, on our college campus, which dates back to 1868. I initially wrote off the idea as “cheesy,” but I am so glad Andrew prevailed! Lee Chapel’s history and simple, understated elegance made it the perfect place to exchange our vows.

I wore my mother’s cathedral length lace veil, which my wedding dress designer had made for her thirty years earlier. My older sister, Katherine, wore it for her wedding the year before, and my younger sister, Sophie, will wear it someday as well. The veil has a small tear in it from where my late grandfather stepped on it at my parents’ wedding day- such a small detail imbued with so much meaning.

Our ceremony music perfectly epitomizes our desired merger of the traditional and the whimsical. My father and I walked down the aisle to the very traditional Prince of Denmark’s March, played on the organ. After we were married, Andrew and I recessed down the aisle to The W&L Swing, our football fight song, sung by W&L’s male a Capella group, Southern Comfort. Almost immediately, our guests started clapping in time with the music. It was a complete surprise and ended up being the perfect transition from the solemnity of the ceremony to the lightheartedness of the reception! I think everyone walked out of the chapel with a smile on their face!

While our ceremony was timeless and traditional, the reception can best be described as a marriage of rustic and elegant, or as Andrew jokingly dubbed it, “Custom Suits and Cowboy Boots.” The idyllic landscape of Goose Creek Highlands, with its incredible views and traditional hunter green horse barn, made it an ideal setting for the reception.

Coming from Memphis, I fully embraced Southern tradition in many aspects of the wedding, such as the traditional Southern station-style dinner reception, our flower girls’ embroidered lace dresses and our ring bearer’s Eton suit. In keeping with southern tradition, to ward off rain on our wedding day, we buried a bottle of Andrew’s favorite bourbon upside down at Goose Creek Highlands exactly one month before the wedding day. It worked! We had absolutely beautiful weather, and Andrew dug up the bottle at the reception and all the groomsmen took a swig in celebration.

We ended the celebration with a “late night snack” of Grippo’s potato chips and chili dogs to represent Andrew’s hometown of Cincinnati, and everyone sporting our quirky monogrammed sweat bands as the band serenaded us with Proud Mary, our very favorite song!

Photography: Jodi & Kurt Photography | Event Planning and Design: Elizabeth Duncan Events | Floral Design: Blue Ridge Floral | Wedding Dress: Pat Kerr | Cake: Caroline Dix | Invitations: Just Paper and Tea | Ceremony Venue: Lee Chapel, Washington & Lee University | Reception Venue: Goose Creek Highlands | Shoes: Valentino | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Annie Griffin | Hair And Makeup: Serenity Spa | Band: The Adrian Duke Project | Groom's Attire: Hickey Freeman | Ceremony Music: Southern Comfort | Transportation: Lexington Limo Vans | Transportation: Quicks | Catering & Sweets Table: Full Circle Catering | Chalkboard Menu: Paper Tangent | Dessert: Sweet Things Ice Cream | Getaway Car: Private Owner | Groom's Attire Boutique: Everard's Clothing | Reception Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Rentals: Festive Fare | Rentals: Blue Ridge AV & Lighting | Veil: Pat Kerr