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Rustic Mountain Wedding in Tennessee // Caroline & Alex

The drive up to Caroline & Alex’s rustic mountain wedding in Tennesee was one of the most beautiful ones I’ve ever made. They married near one of my all-time favorite locations in the world, at the White Fence Farm in Trade, TN, which happens to be one of THE BEST locations I’ve ever had the pleasure of shooting at. And I’ve been to some cool places, ya’ll.

Rustic Mountain Wedding

I loved Caroline & Alex pretty much immediately, and they’re my kind of people up and down. They’re so laid-back and fun and goofy! And, they were sincerely up for whatever ridiculousness I threw at them {which, with this location, was a lot}. The weather was cold and a little rainy, which ended up being perfect for the two of them. They later told me, because their trip to Ireland together early on in their relationship was such a huge part of building who they are together, they felt it was a perfect day. Their entire rustic mountain wedding day just reminded them of that trip.

There were so many great things to explore with this wedding. The groom’s custom suit built by a guy in New Orleans, the TONS of lavender dumped on the couple after the ceremony, the adorably energetic dancing during the reception, the emotion-filled moments of the ceremony, and the heartfelt toasts and tributes at dinner.

Thank you so much, Caroline & Alex. You guys were a blast and a half and so was your rustic mountain wedding!!

Most memorable moment from your wedding day?

That’s a tough one, so many!! For me, I think the ultimate was walking up to Alex for our “first look.” I had felt excited and a little nervous in the days leading up to our wedding but seeing Alex from behind and how sharp he looked in his suit as he looked off into the mountains was when the full weight of my feelings hit me. I remember thinking as I walked up to him that I should laugh or say hi so he knew how close I was getting but I was so overcome that I literally couldn’t make a sound until I had his hand. I’m really glad we decided to have that moment and I highly recommend it for other couples. It was incredibly special for me.

Funniest moment from your wedding day?

One of the best men getting hit in the face with a roman candle and scorching his mustache?… Our puppy Mae catching a duck on the last day and being chased by hungover guests for several minutes around the farm until she let go (the duck survived…at least it was alive and nesting with its duck buddies when we left)…. When my one of my pals from home made a big deal about us getting married in the beautiful mountains of North Carolina and offered the NC state toast at the reception only to later realize the ceremony was actually in TN…. When everyone didn’t realize that the toss cones of lavender were for our exit and so we had to stage a toss and about a pound of lavender was thrown down my dress only to be shaken out late that night after the party…..

What were you most anxious/nervous about regarding your wedding day and how did it turn out?

I don’t know that we were anxious about any one thing but more that the coming together of all the elements would work out smoothly. We were so pleased with the way everything turned out. It was far more perfect than either of us had imagined and I think that’s because we trusted our friends and family to work together. Everyone had a part. Some folks decorated, some baked, some arranged the meals or worked sound equipment or guided the scheduling. It really was a community effort and I think that’s why everyone felt so connected.

What advice would you give to other couples planning their wedding?

Keep it simple and ask for help. And, above all else, limit the amount of time you spend browsing the internet for ideas. The options are limitless and you will quickly waste all of your time! Just go with what you have easy access to and what works for you. Our friends and family were kind enough to offer their talents and that gave them a real sense of involvement and ownership in the event.The result was a celebration with a very strong sense of community.

It’s about the love you share and not the decorations or the clothes or the food. There is a lot of pressure out there for weddings to look a certain way or go a certain way and I encourage every couple out there planning a ceremony to ONLY do the things that truly resonate with you. A wedding can be anything you want it to be. Think outside the box and make it truly your own.

If you could do it all over, would you change anything?

We would rent another couple of standing heaters! Brrrrr….

Any tips for future couples on how to prepare for the wedding photos?

We got to Skype with Raven which was really helpful. We liked her demeanor and felt very comfortable with her at the wedding. I think “meeting” each other beforehand really helped with that. I would also spend the extra bucks for a photographer whose work you really like and who you feel good about working with. Raven’s attitude and values resonated with us and her work is beautiful so we both felt comfortable trusting her and completely let go of “expectations” for the pictures. I just knew she’d get the good stuff so I didn’t worry about it. Although we were really intentional about taking time to slow things down and appreciate the day as it moved along, it really did fly by so having quality pictures to hang in our house and share with our family will mean a lot to us.

Vendors

  • Florist – friends who work a flower farm from our church in Efland, NC and dried lavender and wheat from several sellers on Etsy
  • Caterer – Neomande in Raleigh, NC
  • Cakes/Desserts – pies and cookies by family and friends, wedding cake by our Aunt PeggyVenues: White Fence Farm in Trade, TN
  • Venues – White Fence Farm in Trade, TN
  • DJ – our dear friend Michael Norris lent his sound equipment and we collaborated on a killer playlist
  • Hair Stylist/Makeup Artist – Sierra from HairStudio101 in downtown Boone, NC
  • Wedding Planner – the bride and groom with help from our family and friends, and the lovely Raven!
  • Dress/Clothing – Gown from BHLDN and suit from a custom tailor in New Orleans, LA
  • Accessories/Jewelry – Flower crown by PaulaJeansGarden on Etsy, jewelry from the Nasher Art Museum at Duke University
  • Rings – bride’s rings by custom jeweler Mitzy Jhonkeer in Wilmington, NC, groom’s ring is a family piece (my mom’s dad’s originally, and also worn by my dad for nearly 30 years)

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