Anne and Frank

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Anne and Frank

The Place:

American Village, Montevallo, Alabama

This is a beautiful chapel with hardwood floor and great acoustics. The barn serves as a reception hall.

The theme:

Sweet daytime vintage


Bride: Mom’s wedding dress

Groom: Black suits, Ivory tie

Bridesmaids: Dresses from Nordstrom’s

Groomsmen: Black suits, Chocolate ties

Flower Girls: Ivory and Pink Silk Dresses from Strasburg’s


Lots of handmade. My sister is a fantastic seamstress. She made the ring pillow, tablecloths, etc. If my mom’s dress had not fit, she would have done everything to make exactly what I wanted. Elizabeth made everything paper: Save the Dates, invites, programs, silverware wraps, table cards, bridal shower invites, thank you cards, etc. Most of which was designed with Paper Source materials.

We had very simple flowers, done by two aunts. We used mason jars as candleholders. My mom snuck in a couple ferns. She also decorated the head table as a surprise and it was so beautiful. She took what I wanted, and enhanced it in just the right spots.


A close friend played guitar and sang the opening music. My brother sang “Your Love is Extravagant” by Casting Crowns. For our entrance, the friend played and sang “Divine Romance” by Phil Wickham. The music was picked by both of us, and fit the mood perfectly. It was the easiest and most meaningful part of the wedding planning. It perfectly set the mood for the ceremony. I could relive that moment hearing that music in the chapel seeing my almost husband for the rest of my life. The reception music was provided by Jason Bailey, a local Bluegrass musician. What more could you want? Bluegrass in a barn!


Well, how’s about you had barbecue to that? Bluegrass, in a barn, with barbecue! We had Jim and Nick’s for the reception, down home barbecue with comfort food sides. A friend made the cake. A close friend from work helped prepare and organize. My mom set up a table with peanuts and root beer barrels outside of the barn. While the guests were waiting on us, they ate peanuts while the children ran around under the huge oak tree in front of the barn.

Special Moments:

My brother was in Iraq and missed the wedding. He was able to call during the reception to wish me a happy marriage. It meant so much. During the ceremony blessing, my niece clasped her hands and squinted up at the ceiling in absolute concentration. My nephew followed my father down the aisle after my mother was seated to punch him. One of my brothers suggested it.


My dad is a former minister, so he married us with the help of my DH’s friend. We had two bridesmaids, three groomsmen, two flower girls and a ring bearer. Yes, it was lopsided, but there wasn’t a person up there that we “had” to have in the wedding. They were all people we loved and wanted with us.

If I had to do it over:

I would not stress about the location. There are a MILLION places to have a wedding if you just open up your eyes.

I would have given the photographer more concise direction. They did a great job on the informal candids, but had no experience with formals. So I don’t have as many of the shots that I didn’t even know I wanted.

I would have done whatever it took to get access to AV the day before the wedding. They should offer that as a mandatory service. At the very least, we should have had access to the barn. That would have reduced a lot of stress for my mom.

I wouldn’t have invited people I “had” to. Those who loved us, showed up. Those who didn’t? RSVPd yes and then didn’t show up.

I would have done whatever it took to relax. I was so wound up I didn’t truly enjoy myself.

It happened so fast! I wish the party could have gone on for a couple of days. I love the custom in other cultures of having a week of celebration.


Around $10,000. If we had waited, we would have spent more. My parents paid for a majority. Elizabeth did all the paper at no cost to us. The photographers were friends just starting a business. We had a lot of connections and everyone pulled together for a great party. I could not have done it without the people who love us.

What about the marriage?

Oh wow. I love being married. I really do. The wedding was nothing compared to being married to DH. I love our life together.