This sweet North Carolina wedding is set on a charming christmas tree farm in Cashiers, North Carolina. Britney + Justin went beyond cowboy boots and opted to have the wedding party driven to the ceremony site by a tractor. After, guests enjoyed a lovely mix of rustic fun and mountain elegance at the couple's enchanting wedding reception.
Britney + Justin
Wedding day weather: Clear skies, very warm and beautiful.
Number of guests: 96
Your budget: $20,000-$30,000
Biggest splurge: The food and drink. We both love food and love to eat and also love a good bourbon. We refused to settle for mediocre and so we splurged on beef tenderloin and fresh, wild-caught mountain trout. The bourbon selection, Woodford Reserve. Yum!
Biggest savings: The decorations. The venue had many decorations to choose from and we loved what they had. We did not have to spend much to make the place look gorgeous.
Why did you choose the Mountains for your wedding?
Justin and I both love the outdoors. We moved to Charlotte, NC from Ohio and have enjoyed taking frequent weekend trips to areas like Boone, Asheville, Brevard and the Highlands. The Blue Ridge mountains are breathtaking, we love to hike and see as many waterfalls as possible! Aside from the beauty of the area, we love the abundance of craft breweries, good food and friendly people. When we got engaged around Christmas 2014 we both knew that we wanted to plan a mountain destination wedding. I began looking in the Blue Ridge area for venues and quickly stumbled upon Sawyer Family Farmstead. It was the perfect place for us.
Wedding day theme:
I don't really like the idea of “themes” for a wedding, or “colors” for that matter. We chose things that appealed to us, that made us happy.
Where did you find your inspiration?
My inspiration was the venue itself. The venue and the view are stunning all on their own. We simply added some flowers and called it a day.
How did you choose to personalize your wedding?
Justin and I chose every song that played that day from start to finish. We both love music and did not want our wedding to be like every other wedding you go to where the playlist is predictable. When we got engaged we started a list of songs we liked and thought would be fun for the wedding. Over the next 9 months we continued to add to the list. My biggest “bridezilla moment” was probably when I handed over the list songs to our DJ. I had the list broken down into sections for cocktail hour, dinner, dances and reception and even asked that the songs be played in a certain order! We also asked that no song requests be played unless approved by the bride or groom. Our DJ was great about it and it was definitely worth all the time and effort. Everyone talked about how fun and authentic our playlist was.
My best friend and MOH is a fabulous singer and we asked her to sing our first dance “Amazed” my Paul McCartney while her very talented step-father played the guitar. It was so heartfelt and beautiful.
What was your favorite part of the reception?
Dancing with my grandfather during the father-daughter dance. My own dad passed away when I was young and so my “Papa” has always been a father to me. My Papa recently lost a long fight with kidney failure and so I feel very fortunate to have had that time with him.
What are three things you're super glad you did?
- Keeping the guest list to a minimum. Justin and I decided that we did not want to invite anyone that neither of us had not met several times. It was important to us that everyone that was there was invested in our relationship and marriage. It was difficult planning the guest list when family members had their own ideas about who should be invited!
- Paid for superior food. As I mentioned, we love food and so do our family and friends. We've all been to weddings where the food leaves something to be desired, we did not want one of those weddings. Also, I love to cook (and am pretty damn good at it) and wanted to serve something that was similar to a meal I'd prepare at home. The price was worth it because everyone still raves about how our food was the best they've ever had at a wedding, and we agree!
- Renting out an entire motel for Justin, myself and our friends. It was hectic to plan and get everyone to book early but it was worth it. The 18 room motel was completely rented out by our friends from Ohio and Charlotte, which turned into a wild and crazy time had by all.
What was the biggest challenge in planning your mountain wedding and how did you overcome it?
The accommodations in the area are minimal due to the size of the town. Another wedding was also scheduled for the same weekend at the same venue, so rooms were especially limited, it was almost a disaster. I spent a lot of time finding nearby rental homes for our families to rent and organizing all of our friends to stay in the same motel. It turned out great because our “Welcome Party” was thrown at Justin's families rental home, which was a gorgeous home with spectacular views. His family prepared a casual and yummy meal at their home and invited all guests to attend. We saved money in having to plan and pay for a rehearsal dinner at a restaurant. My side of the family also rented homes nearby, so everyone was close and was able to visit each other easily.
How did you find and choose your vendors?
Our venue provided a list of vendor options in the area, and we went with many of their suggestions due to the area being so remote and having to pay extra to have vendors travel. Any other vendors I found on a bride's best friend- The Knot.
What is your best piece of advice to other mountain brides?
Go with your heart and don't sweat the small stuff. You'll find yourself caught up in details and worries that you'd never thought you'd be concerned about. You'll find yourself trying to squeeze in vendors and details that don't fit in your budget because “everyone's doing it”. Don't worry about what everyone else is doing, worry about what makes you happy. At the end of the day, this is about you and your partner. No one is going to remember what color your table cloths were, they will only remember how it felt to be in the presence of two insanely happy and in love people. Enjoy!
Cashiers NC Wedding Vendors
Wedding Photographer: Rob + Kristen Photography | Cinema and Video: Beautiful Life Films | Event Venue: Sawyer Family Farmstead | Floral Designer: The Blossom Jar | Catering: Rosewood Market Catering | DJ: AAA Entertainment | Accommodations: Mountain Laurel Inn | Transportation: Sapphire Valley | Rentals: Mountain Party Tents and Events | Ceremony Musicians: Trio 864 | Wedding Gown: J Majors Bridal | Menswear: Jos A Bank