Crafted by Jacin Fitzgerald, this Pippin Hill wedding has way too many pretty details to gush over in one little intro. Let’s start with the “Trade Your Tie for a Bowtie” bar (cute!!) or the personalized macarons by Laura Hooper Calligraphy and finish with those sweeping Virginia landscapes. But that’s only the beginning of this French country inspired celebration. Jump into all the stunning imagery captured by Ryan Ray. And if you missed it, take a peak at this couple’s seriously pretty engagement and pre-wedding festivities that include a good ol’ southern clam bake.
From the Bride… From the minute we got engaged, we knew we wanted to get married at Pippin Hill. We felt it was a perfect representation of the beauty of this special spot in the country where most of our guests had never been before. Fall is our favorite time in Charlottesville, so a September wedding was a no brainer for us. We wanted our wedding décor to have the same feel as the French countryside, with lush, overflowing flowers, woven baskets filled with lavender and herbs, and a rustic yet refined feel.
Working with Jacin was a true dream come true. She completely understood our vision for the wedding, and perfectly transformed the ideas in our head into reality. Working with her on the flowers was one of my favorite experiences from wedding planning, as flowers played such a big part in the décor for the day. I wanted a lush and loose bouquet, and the centerpieces to be low and overflowing flowers as well. We chose lots of champagne, cream, and blush-colored flowers, and the bridesmaids had pops of color in their bouquets. Jacin traveled to Nashville, TN to meet one weekend and pulled together the entire tablescape and flowers that we were going to use at my wedding. It was amazing to be able to see it all together in person and work with her on what I liked, and what I hoped to change. I loved watching her swap flowers in and out right in front of me. It was such an incredible interactive experience that I will never forget.
It was so fun to be able to get ready at Pippin Hill on the morning of our wedding, as we were able to watch Jacin and her team pull together the entire décor for the day. We could see all of the details that we had talked about and planned for the past year and a half come together, which was truly special. My bridesmaids and I had mimosas and were in a fun, celebratory mood all day long. It was a perfect getting-ready day!
We had absolutely stunning overflowing baskets of flowers that were at the entrance to the aisle for our ceremony. As for the ceremony, we wanted to stand at an altar, but did not want to block the incredible views of the mountains behind us—one of the main reasons why we chose to get married at Pippin Hill. Jacin found vintage screen doors that she then draped in flowers and greenery, which blended in beautifully with the natural beauty of our backdrop and made for an absolutely breathtaking altar.
Our wedding ceremony was both my and Ryan’s favorite time from the day. My dad walked me down the aisle to a string version of All I Want Is You by U2, his favorite band. Our dear friend from college officiated wonderfully, and he chose some very special poems and quotes to incorporate that resonated deeply with us. We had a ring warming ceremony, where we passed around our wedding bands through the guests for them to send their love and well wishes into. We also had one of the bridesmaids sing the song Halo with our string trio. It was so special to have her sing during our ceremony. While she was singing, we invited our immediate families to join us in lighting a unity candle, to symbolize the blending of our two families. Another one of my favorite parts of the ceremony was that two of my little nieces walked down the aisle as flower girls. They got a little diverted during their walk, which made everyone laugh, but they eventually made it down the aisle, cuter than ever. We wrote our own vows, and didn’t share them with each other beforehand, making it truly special hearing them for the first time at the ceremony. We followed the same pattern, so our vows would have a similar feel to them. We each said “I am here because…,” “I love you because…,” and “I promise to…” with three reasons for each. Ryan was pretty emotional during his vows, which ensured there was not a dry eye in the crowd.
Ryan loves wearing bowties, so we thought it would be fun to have a “trade your tie for a bow tie” bar at our cocktail hour. My mom worked for months on sewing bowties for every male at our wedding, and created lavender sachets for all of the women. They turned out so gorgeous (I still think she should open an Etsy shop!), and it was so fun seeing guests helping each other tie bowties at our cocktail hour. Jacin hung the bowties from vintage shutters, and placed bunches of lavender and other herbs in little vintage boxes and baskets all around them. She also lined the bars with beautiful hops, which added to the lush, green feeling of the day. We had a bluegrass band start the fun and merriment at our cocktail hour, and our signature cocktails were a hit. Everyone was able to watch the sun set behind the mountains during our cocktail hour—we couldn’t have timed it more perfectly.
Our centerpieces and tablescapes turned out perfectly. Jacin created the most gorgeous low and overflowing centerpieces with all of my favorite flowers, and surrounded them with tall candles, votive candles, little vases holding single stems of flowers, and herb pots. We chose vintage plates that had a variety of blue patterns on them to serve as charger plates, topped them with our hand torn menus and lavender sprigs, and used vintage silverware alongside them. We also had macarons serve as escort cards, with each guest’s name written on an individual macaron and placed in mini cake holders at each seat. The entire tablescape and place setting truly felt like we were back in France—I couldn’t have dreamed up something more gorgeous!
Our band, A Town A List, made sure our wedding reception was incredibly fun. Ryan and I danced to Zac Brown Band’s Loving You Easy, and I still get a rush of emotion every time I hear the song. Ryan and his mother invited all other mothers and sons to join them on the dance floor partway through their dance, which was so heartwarming to watch. Our band made sure no one left the dance floor all night, and we had an absolute blast. We ended the night with a sparkler sendoff while our band played The Saints Go Marching In. It was such a perfect day and night, we both wish we could relive it again.
We are so thankful for all of our vendors, who played such special roles in our planning and big day. I’ve already talked how much we appreciated Jacin and her whole team for planning the weekend of our dreams (which involved essentially two weddings!). She was such a joy to work with and has become a dear friend. She and her team made the whole weekend move seamlessly and perfectly, even playing the dual role of planner and florist. Our photographer, Ryan Ray, has provided us with some of the best memories of our special day, as our pictures are absolutely stunning and perfectly capture the feel from our special day (and Welcome Dinner). He was even right in the middle of the dance floor all night, missing nothing. Chelsea Petaja took our vision for paper goods and absolutely nailed it. I still cannot get over how beautiful our initiation packets were. Our videographer provided us with such a special video of our wedding, weaving in vintage film for parts of our day, that makes us cry every time we watch it. We cannot thank them enough!
Photographer: Ryan Ray Photography | Videographer:: Shaking Hands Productions | Wedding Cake: Sweethaus | Bride’s Shoes: Badgley Mischka | Band: The Adrian Duke Project | Transportation: Albemarle And Ambassador Limo | Additional Bridesmaids Hair: Mariam Muhammad | Additional Bridesmaids Makeup: Tinsley Onuegbu | Bluegrass Band: Early Grove String Trio | Bow ties & Suspenders: High Cotton Ties | Bridal Gown: Vera Wang | Bride and Bridesmaids Hair & Makeup: Amanda Dang | Bride’s Earrings: David Yurman | Bridesmaids Monogrammed Bow Tie Tank Tops: LPE Designs on Etsy | Ceremony Musicians: Linden Trio | Ceremony Singer: Ashley Hogan | Cocktail Table Linens: Nuage Designs | Cork Board, Save the Dates, Seating Chart Design & Napkins: Southern Fried Paper | Flower Girl Dresses: Bella Bridesmaid | Groom & Groomsmen’s Attire: Kenneth Cole Reaction | Hand-made Bow Ties & Lavender Sachets: Beverley Venables, Mother of the Bride | Ice Cream Sandwiches: It’s-It | Invitations and Day-of Paper Goods Design & Calligraphy: Oh My Deer Handmades | Lighting, Sound & Stage: Blue Ridge AV & Lighting | Linens: La Tavola Fine Linen Rental | Macaron Hand Lettering: Laura Hooper Calligraphy | Macarons: Buttercream Bakeshop | Martini Glasses, Easels & Trays: Festive Fare | Mother of the Bride Gown: Badgley Mischka | Mother of the Groom Gown: Monique Lhuillier | Place Settings, Glassware, Ceremony “Altar” Production & Vin: Southern Vintage | Ring Dish: Paloma’s Nest | Seating Chart Production: I Do Linens | Wedding Planning, Design & Florals: Jacin Fitzgerald Events
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