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Soft Outdoor Wedding with Southern Charm

When it gets right down to it, I’m a neutrals girl. Gray, taupe and a soft dusty blue are a few of my best friends and this Georgia affair ties them all in perfect form. Think “Southern elegance” without any of the stuffiness, and organic design moments brought together by Molly McKinley and Acorn Garden & Home. More in the gallery from Julie Cate Photography!


From The Bride… Thomas and I knew each other’s names and faces years before we actually met, thanks to our two college friends that thought the both of us were destined for each other. After 3 years joking about the other person, we realized our friends were right: we met, began to exchange phone calls, made visits to each other’s schools, went on adventures, and fell in love.Thomas swept me off my stubborn feet and showed me excitement and depth that I didn’t know I could experience. I am so humbled that the Lord has given us each other to do life with!

Our wedding was beautiful! I knew I wanted to marry where I grew up and love that both our church and reception venue were historic properties in Marietta, places I’ve driven by my whole life. I wanted the event to feel whimsical, yet classic and southern—very natural, not stuffy. Molly McKinley, our planner, nailed my vision on the head. I gave up reception decor decisions to my mom and Molly, trusting their style and opinions. I walked in to the tent that night amazed. It was perfect! I loved the whimsical florals, twinkling cafe lights, the farm table for our wedding party and boxwood wreaths my mom created as centerpieces. People kept coming up to me saying, “This looks so much like you, Amanda Claire.” That made me so happy! Oh and people DANCED. The band took a break, but no one followed them. It was the most fun day!

I think what I loved most about our wedding day was watching so many people from our different walks of life celebrate together. It was so special to have them surround us, reminding us how loved we truly are. I also loved seeing a ring on my husband’s finger and the flowers in my hair… :)

Photography: Julie Cate Photography | Floral Design: Acorn Garden & Home | Wedding Gown: Monique Lhuillier | Cake: Eileen Carter Creations | Ceremony Venue: Marietta First Baptist Church | Reception Venue: Hilton Garden Inn - Brumby Hall And Gardens | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Yoo | Hair & Makeup: Mirror Mirror Makeup | Lighting: Magnum Lighting | Band: Emerald Empire Band | Bowties: Robintreelane On Etsy | Drapery: Event Drapery | Film Lab: Richard Photo Lab | Groom And Groomsmen: Jos A Bank | Linens: I Do Linens | Paper Goods: Studio R Design - Amanda Claire Rives (Bride) | Rentals: Classic Party Rentals | Vintage Rentals: DIY Decor | Wedding Planning & Design: Molly McKinley

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Greek Orthodox Northern California Wedding

Don’t get me wrong, the rest of this wedding is hold-the-phone gorgeous, but even getting past this first bouquet image? Well, it’s easier said than done. The prettiest mix of peonies, garden roses and ranunculus by Mandolin Floral, it’s a Pinterest sensation just waiting to happen and we certainly wouldn’t blame you if stopped to stare All. Day. Long. More wedding goodness from DeFiore Photography in the gallery right here.


From DeFiore PhotographySandra and Chris traveled 3,000 miles to exchange vows and celebrate their wedding in the heart of wine county in Northern California- the very same place they got engaged! Sandra’s family choose the ascension cathedral to pay homage to Sandra’s greek upbringing. Their Greek orthodox wedding ceremony took my breath away. The fact that Sandra and Chris choose an area so rich with culture and tradition while incorporating so many of their personal touches is a testament to their deep connection to family and desire to blend their distinct personalities into the wedding day. Shades of pinks, blushes, ivories and gold complimented their day and it all came together like an excellent, balanced glass of Pinot Noir. I have a special place in my heart for eucalyptus, Peonies and letter press so the natural Mandolin flowers and Postscript paired together perfectly on the invitation suite.

Sandra wore a delicate strapless modern lace Vera Wang and Chris’s black tux with pink bow tie matched the featured wedding color. Their look was simple, classic and elegant. 

The wedding and reception took place at the Auberge De Soleil, one of the most beautiful venues I’ve ever had the pleasure to photograph. There’s something alluring about Northern California, the lush, rich feel of the ocean air that’s so enticing, and a nice change of pace from mountains of Northern Colorado.

I’ve been coming to Northern California on and off for years, but Sandra and Chris’s wedding was the first time I’ve had the opportunity to take in the richness of the landscape while documenting such a beautiful affair. Just a few of the things I love about “Wine Country” ; the wild rosemary and olive trees, mixed with a hint of ocean air from the bay. The turning of the grape leaves and the quiet stillness just after the harvest. The valley was still bustling, but over all, it held a quite space. The grapes had been pulled from the vines, which means it’s time for people to quietly retreat and close things up for the winter.

This energy was perfect for Sandra and Chris’s intimate wedding cerebration. The warm, golden light of October in wine county was the perfect shade for all the outdoor photographs and really helped to set the mood for the whole event. A rainbow means something different in each culture, but to me it’s a symbol of promise and connection. This is what I see in store for Chris and Sandra. Their connection is undeniable – and made this wedding celebration was a perfect kick-off to a new life together.

Photography: DeFiore Photography | Flowers: Mandolin Floral | Invitations: Postscript Paper | Ceremony: Ascension Cathedral | Reception: Auberge Du Soleil | Band: Shake | Film Lab: The Find Lab | Jewelry- Wedding Bands, Engagement: Fuenfer Jewelers | Rehearsal Dinner: Silverado Vineyards | Venue: Auberge Du Soleil | Wedding Attire: Vera's House Of Bridal

DIY Fluttering Heart Sign

Do you hear that? That m’dears is the sound of our heart strings going pitter patter. Why you might ask? Because today is the day we get to share our newest DIY from the lens of Ruth Eileen Photography. A sweet little signage that is pure ombre goodness, guaranteed to set your hearts aflutter. Scroll below for every pastel petal detail!

MaterialsCanvas in size of your choice, we used 24”x36”
10-15 sheets white cardstock paper
RIT fabric dye
Heart hole punchers in two sizes, we used this one and this one
Hot glue gun
Hot glue sticks
Bone folder


step-1Fill a large mixing bowl with hot water and slowly stir in a pinch of dye. Test the color with a scrap of paper towel and continue adding dye until you reach the lightest color you’d like for your ombre.

step-2Lay down a trash bag or piece of cardboard on the floor to keep your workspace clean. Lay out several sheets of paper towel to cover the cardboard or trash bag, it will help the paper dry.

step-3Cut the cardstock sheets in half. Dip in a piece of paper until as submerged as possible (you may want to put on some latex gloves for this part), then remove after a minute or so and lay on the paper towels. Repeat until about ⅓ of the cardstock is dyed.

step-4Add more dye to the mixing bowl to create a darker shade. Repeat step 3 to dye another ⅓ of the cardstock.

step-5Add even more dye to create your darkest shade and repeat step 3 to dye the remaining cardstock. Let the cardstock air dry for several hours.

step-6Use the heart punches to cut out heart shapes in two sizes. You need about twice as many small hearts as big hearts. Keep the cut hearts separated by size and shade in six different bowls.

step-7Use the bone folder to draw a line down the center of each heart, then fold in half with your fingers.

step-8Use a ruler to evenly draw out the monogram letters. We made two evenly spaced boxes about 6” away from the edge of the canvas. Then we drew the letters inside the boxes, and added a plus sign in between the letters. You could also use a large stencil or print out large letters in a font you like, then cut them out to trace onto the canvas.

step-9Lay the canvas on a flat surface like a table. Lay out the big hearts over the letters, with the darkest shade at the top and the lightest at the bottom. Leave an inch or so between each big heart, then fill in with the little hearts. Place the hearts haphazardly in every direction and fill in as much negative space as possible.

step-10Once you are satisfied with your placement, hot glue the hearts in place by picking up and gluing one heart at a time. Use an eraser to get rid of any stray pencil marks, then hang the sign on the wall or prop on an easel.

Photography: Ruth Eileen Photography | Design & Styling: SMP Living

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Romantic Botanical Garden Wedding

It’s official. I’ve fallen head over heels in love with the gardens in St. Louis, and this this darling fete is the reason why. From the personalized parasols, to the brass band parade, to the sentimental ceremony, every detail Jordan Brittley captured is pure loveliness. Scroll below for a first glimpse at the pretty, and don’t miss the gallery all waiting right here.


From Jordan BrittleyThis darling wedding is going to have you falling head over heels in love with the gardens in St Louis. And don’t miss the beautiful cake & parasols that the bride had specifically made for each of her maids!

From the beautiful Bride… We chose to get married in the STL Botanical Gardens because our first date was to art exhibit of Monet Nympheas. (Also a wedding present to ourselves – large copy of the piece) Although its no Giverny, A garden only seemed right. We were hopeful that the reflecting pond would have blooming water lilies (bit too early). We also fell in love with New Orleans (We were long distance while Chris worked hard at Tulane’s Medicine Internship) therefore we wanted to do a second line. It’s a tradition in brass band parades in New Orleans, Louisiana. We marched to the Dixieland tune of “When the saints come marching in’ to celebrate our entrance to the reception as Husband and wife. The St louis Big Band was great enough to play.

As for the ceremony we had Sanskrit (Hindu), His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama, and Christian reading John 17: 20-23. We wanted our readings to represent our varied background (my Nepali Tibetan background) and his Christian background.

Photography: Jordan Brittley | Videography: Jordan Brittley | Floral Design: Walter Knoll | Dress: Simply Elegant Bridal | Cake: Cravings | Ceremony Venue: St Cecilias | Reception Venue: Botanical Gardens | Shoes: Jimmy Choo | Bridesmaids' Dresses: Jenny Yoo | Catering: St Louis Catering | Ceremony Quartette: Quartette Accord | Earrings: Nadri | Limo: JED Limo | Parasols: Heart And Soul Wedding | Reception Band: St Louis Big Band | Veil: Simply Elegant Bridal