Monday, July 26, 2010

A Peacock-Inspired Wedding (on a hummingbird-sized budget)

My sister Mary Ruth is the youngest of us three girls (I am the, ahem, wisest), so like it or not, she will always be the baby. When she announced her engagement last summer, we were all thrilled for her. When she announced that she wanted to get married in eight weeks, we were surprised, but not much. She's always been a little impulsive. When she decided she still wanted a bit of a to-do for her wedding even though she was on a very tight budget, we sighed (but secretly began planning and charting and making a little folder of wedding goodness for her). I got to help her find the dress, order and arrange the flowers, make the programs and invitations and cupcake flags, and do all the centerpieces.

Somehow this girl got lucky enough to find not one, but TWO perfect locations that had openings. She chose Two Rivers Mansion, a beautiful antebellum home nestled between the Cumberland and Stones rivers, with a rich history. Two Rivers is owned by Nashville's parks system, and it's much more affordable than private mansions, if you are lucky enough to find an empty date (and Mary Ruth was!). She found herself drawn to peacock feathers, so we used those along with the mansion's history as inspiration for the wedding's subtle theme.
MR Wedding Board Updated

I designed the invitations in Publisher and the program in Word, using a homemade stencil and cardstock for the program's cover. Oh, if only I had known about Download and Print back then! They have a peacock feather invitation, just ready to print! That would have saved me hours of my life.

Programs before I tied silver ribbons through the holes.  
Me and my little guy.

The ceremony was a family affair. Laura and I were bridesmaids, and my husband's band provided the music. My mother and father walked Mary Ruth down the aisle; then, my father climbed the steps to officiate the wedding. My mother made the beautiful monogram arrangements on the front columns with some cardboard letters from JoAnn, some floral foam, and flowers and magnolia leaves from her own garden.

This was probably the best Graham behaved during the ceremony, the chance you take when your ring bearer is two.

After the ceremony, my father threw open the mansion's doors and invited everyone inside for the reception. The peacock motif coincidentally worked incredibly well with the mansion's decor. The "gift room," one of four parlors in the front of the mansion, actually had peacock-blue walls, and the foyer had a wallpaper mural that happened to feature a peacock.

We saved money by using vases, chargers, and candlesticks that we already had among family members, and we reused the bridesmaids' and mothers' bouquets in arrangements during the reception.

The mansion's two left parlors are rose-colored,which let us depart a little from the teal and metallics and introduce some pinks. We used some vintage pottery from the bride's and groom's families that coordinated with the rosy colors, and hydrangeas from our grandmother's garden.

Mary Ruth wanted a cupcake tower (from Nashville's incredible Cupcake Collection), and she made her own "giant cupcake," which we topped with a little wooden bride and groom.  I bought them unfinished from etsy seller goosegrease and painted them myself to save a little money.

It was a beautiful, fun day for everyone there. Mary Ruth looked beautiful, and we wanted the old mansion to reflect her own infectious charm and loveliness. 

Congratulations, Mary Ruth and Dave!

Photographs courtesy of the very talented Katherine Sloan, KRSloan Photography. Pin It


allofyou said...

Hello,first how can I send an wedding acceptance letter?What points shall we mention in that?

wedding acceptance letter

Anonymous said...

I LOVE the colors. and I love the use of "found" objects. So many times, we think we want perfect, and so many times it is the imperfections that make something so lovely. Not to mention the "green" aspect of using what you have instead of buying something new.

marissa said...

oh my everything is gorgeous, I love the peacock feather theme. YOur dress is fabulous too!