Destination I Do
Friday, May 22, 2015

Quaint North Carolina Nuptials

Words by Courtney Kellar
Photos courtesy of Revival Photography

For Jessica and Alex, there was never any doubt they would opt for a destination wedding, it was just a matter of the “where.” The bride is a traveling nurse, so the couple is always on the move and knew there was no such thing as a “hometown” wedding. Since Jessica is originally from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania and Alex is from Charleston, South Carolina, they decided to find a wedding location somewhere in the middle.

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“In between assignments, I researched wedding venues in North Carolina and The Mast Farm Inn popped up in my search,” says the bride. “So, one weekend we made the trip to the Inn…and spent the day/night. Being that our families are from Pittsburgh and Charleston – The Mast Farm Inn was an equal distance for both families.”

While it was love at first sight for the couple and their venue, their families took a little convincing. “Most of Alex’s family were shocked that we didn’t decide to do a beach wedding considering he is a surfer and has always lived at the beach,” recalls Jessica. “My mom wanted us to consider a Pittsburgh wedding, but in my mind…it just wasn’t for me.”

The couple’s loved ones eventually came around to a wedding in Valle Crucis, North Carolina, but the couple knew immediately it was the place for them. “The day we went and stayed at the Inn it was snowing…as we drove up the winding mountain roads and approached the Inn – were were in love! The whole experience at The Mast Farm Inn is immaculate. You walk into a home, they treat you like old friends/family, the fragrance of the kitchen fills the air…it is just perfect.”

The bride admits planning isn’t her strong suit, so she relied on the women in her life and the venue owner to help her hash-out all the details. “I am not a planner, naturally that gene skipped me,” says Jessica. “Luckily, my mom had handled events/vendors prior and she knew what ask and what to look for.” Come wedding weekend, the couple rented out the B&B for their guests and got a private wedding experience.

In terms of décor, the bride relied heavily on her mom, sister and mother-in-law to help her execute her ideas. “Pinterest helped with ideas, but I liked everything…putting it all together so it made sense was hilarious.” One detail the bride is most proud of were the welcome bags. Her sister carved a stamp featuring the couple’s initials which they used to decorate the outside of the bags.

“In [the welcome bags] we included a welcome letter and itinerary/time of events, two beers (one from Charleston and one from Pittsburgh), my Grandma Utzigs’ homemade cookies, snacks and maps of the area…” Another personal touch the couple introduced was in the form of their guest book. “My mom collected flat rocks to write on, so during our cocktail hour our guests could write on them with white or silver markers with their best wishes,” says the bride.

The couple also got DIY when it came to their favors. Since the reception was going to include multiple fire pits, they assembled s’mores kits for their guests to make themselves a treat during the reception. The personalized touches were a perfect addition to the down-home feel of this couple’s wedding and the historic charm of their venue.

During the planning process, the couple did run into some miscommunication issues with a few of their vendors, but thankfully Jessica got everything in writing. This is one of her main tips for others couples planning a destination wedding. “Keep every email, text, letter, etc. until “I do” for reference and unnecessary charges. Do not stress, the day will be perfect regardless of the things that may or may not happen. The man or woman standing next to you will be the only thing you care about.

“Keep in contact with your wedding planner, he/she should be in your best interest, not in your pocket. [Also,} invest in an awesome photographer. They can be spendy, yes, but there are so many things you will miss and when you see the pictures you will be happy you did so…I can’t express how awesome it is to see your husband dancing with both your grandmothers.”

Vendors: Photographer: Revival Photography, Wedding Planner: Danielle Deschamps with The Mast Farm Inn, Ceremony/Reception Site: The Mast Farm Inn, Destination: Valle Crucis, North Carolina, Florist: Peggy Mendel with Pearl’s Garden, Stationery: Wedding Paper Divas, Cake: Simplicity at The Mast Farm Inn, Hair: Shear Shakti, Makeup: Beautiful Bride on Location, Gown Designer: David’s Bridal, Groom’s Clothing Designer: J. Ferrar, Bridesmaids/Groomsmens’ Clothing Designer: David’s Bridal/J. Ferrar, Catering: Simplicity at The Mast Farm Inn, DJ: DJ Dail Holderness, Officiant: Rev. Richard Tidyman

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