Rustic Elegance :: Heather & Lee

March 19, 2013  |  Inspiration

I saw on the news today that the average cost of the wedding has increased to $28k. I think that no matter how big or small your budget is and how many guests you have at your wedding, it’s so much more about the feel of your wedding that guests will appreciate and remember. In a sense, it’s your wedding’s “brand” (there’s the marketer in me!)

I’ve met with brides who want to make sure they keep their weddings small for various reasons, but I think it’s so easy to lose sight of this goal or be persuaded otherwise. So, I decided to ask my friend Heather for advice about how to stay focused on keeping your wedding small. Her “rustic elegance” themed wedding was successful in remaining small (and super charming).

Here’s what she had to say:

When you were planning your wedding, what did you want guests to feel and remember about your wedding?

In planning our wedding, I wanted our guests to feel (as cheesy as this sounds) loved.  Lee and I looked at our wedding day as the day that not only we would become one but also that our two families would become one as well. Our immediate family members were the only guests at our wedding because we wanted it to be an intimate setting. We wanted them to feel as if this wasn’t just a union between me and Lee but between our families as well. There is a saying when you marry a man/woman you also marry their family, which was the foundation for our wedding day. I wanted them to remember that without their love and support we would not be who we are. They each played such an integral part of our lives and our wedding day.

What was your favorite thing about the wedding?

The favorite thing about our wedding was the overall style and feel of our wedding day. I had a vision for our wedding, thanks to Pinterest, of exactly what I wanted for our wedding day. The style, rustic elegance, fits both me and Lee’s personal style. My husband is a sugar cane farmer, so incorporating rustic elements such as: sugar cane, burlap, and the antique pieces suited his style. The touches of elegance: mercury glass, floral arrangements, white decor, embellished napkin rings spoke to my personality and style. It was a great way to incorporate both of our personalities into our wedding day.

What was your favorite part of your wedding planning process?

My favorite part of the wedding process was incorporating our family members and friends into our wedding day. Even though our wedding was small and limited to immediate family members only, we had so many family members and friends come forward to help us make our day special. Some of the special touches were: an antique mantle piece, embellished napkin rings, pralines (made by a family friend), catering (done by my brother Charles and a friend), our flowers and floral arrangements (done by Lee’s sister Jeanne and Aunt Melanie) several mercury glass pieces, china settings and several other decor pieces that made our wedding day memorable and came from the kindness of our friends and family members. Without there selfless contributions our wedding day would not have been as perfect.

We were taken back at the outpouring of love and support that we received during our wedding planning process. And what shocked me the most was that they expected nothing in return, which really filled our hearts with love.

You wanted a small wedding and made it happen. What advice would you give other brides who are trying to plan a small wedding?

My advice for a bride that is planning a small wedding is to stay focused. We had several family members and friends try to convince us to have a larger wedding, but we stayed focused on what we wanted  and envisioned for our wedding day.

Discuss everything with your fiancé to make sure that you are both on the same page and have the same vision for your wedding day. If one of you is set on a small wedding and the other isn’t, it is easier to lose sight of your original plans and throw the wedding planning process into a frenzy.

Stay true to your couple style! If you aren’t an overly romantic bride don’t go with a romantic themed wedding day. It’s about you and your husband so enjoy yourself!

Here are some photos from their day!

white wedding bouquet
rustic elegance
rustic elegance
rustic elegance - mercury glass
rustic elegance, mercury glass
rustic elegance, vintage napkin rings
small wedding cake, simple wedding cake

vintage car

just married, vintage car

Here’s Heather’s favorite picture from the wedding!


My favorite picture from my wedding day is the picture of me and Lee kissing outside of the church near the vintage car. The vintage car was a wedding present from Lee’s godmother, Carolyn, and her family. This car was special in another aspect because it reminded me of my deceased father. He loved vintage cars, and I felt as if he sent this special present to us on our wedding day. It was just one of the ways that he was present with us that day.



Photos by: Sara Kelley

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